NaN update, april 18 2002.

(ton) #1

Dear Blender users,

Since the closing of the company, we’ve been working on finding solutions for continuation of the Blender projects. Although there’s still no final decision to mention, I realize there’s an urgent need for news on what’s going on!

Last month, the NaN Technologies company was closed down. This has resulted in a tragic lost of jobs for our employees, and caused a major disruption of our website services.
Blender, and all its related IP (Intellectual Property) and copyrights, is still owned by the NaN Holding company, from which a few people - including myself - are working on scenarios for continuation.
An analysis of the current and past situation has learnt us a few things;

  • Blender Publisher
    This project has proven to be far too large and ambitious to continue with a small team. Reactions from our customers and from the media markets in general were positive, but it looks like it needs more years of development and marketing to become profitable.

  • Blender Creator
    This is in fact the ‘old’ Blender, with 3D stills and animation as output. The majority of the Blender user community is interested in that part of Blender, preferably as freeware or accessible for a very low price.
    It is possible to disconnect Creator from Publisher completely, by removing interactive 3D and the game-engine from it, and market it as separate products.

  • Blender website, e-shop and community
    The website and community is one of NaN’s biggest assets, but unfortunately it is hard to make substantial revenues with it.
    Supporting the community is essential for the total Blender picture to survive. It could be a preference to organize the community as a self-supporting (self-financing) entity.
    The community demands an active ongoing support of the Creator product as a matter of course.

  • The Blender Mobile initiative, based on server-side generation of 3D content, is still viable and worth pursuing. This project is entirely aimed at mobile content companies, and hasn’t been communicated to the outside world yet. We are establishing a separate company which will continue with it.

The scenarios for continuation of Blender are numerous; from splitting in pieces to selling everything to another company. Preference is, especially when a mobile company can be set up, to keep the IP within the Holding.
A small team of 4-5 people potentially could manage the Creator and website projects. There is interest from some companies to look at this, we also need more insight if and how we could establish this ourselves.

As an alternative and/or backup, I am working on a new community plan:

  • independently organized in a Dutch ‘foundation’ (US: nonprofit public benefit corporation ).
  • includes all content, demos, tutorials, knowledge base, etc from the old site
  • an hierarchical ‘operator’ based system, where users can add new groups, articles and discussion forums.
  • aim to become financially independent, by introducing a small membership fee which gives access to specific areas.
  • Blender sources will be opened for members.
  • New ‘official’ Creator versions will be developed within this system, with a virtual team. I will personally manage this, for at least during the startup phase.

I am in close contact with several Blender users on this topic, if (when?) it becomes realistic, more information will be available immediately.

We expect that decisions on Blenders future will be made soon, hopefully in weeks.
Whatever the outcome will be, it will include continuation of Blender and the user community.

Thanks everyone for the positive feedback the past month, hopefully you can practice some more patience…


-Ton Roosendaal-

(CurtisS) #2

Thanks for the Update, Ton. It is very comforting to know that you have not given up on your “baby”. You have my complete support!

(system) #3

Nice to see an official posting! Hope you can find a solution to keep up Blender. The community at least will last forever!


(LethalSideP) #4

Hot damn, it’s nice to finally hear some news from you guys, Ton. Nice to see that Blender’s spirit lives on, even if its body has passed on.

It sounds like a pretty solid plan you’ve got there. Well, whatever happens, the community’s behind you all the way. BTW that opensource idea is a VERY good one indeed - there’s a hotbed of talent in the Blender community just waiting to be tapped, and you’ve just started the flow.

With you all the way,

“If I ever lose my faith in you, there’ll be nothing left for me to do.” --Sting

(xype) #5

At least SkyWriter can have his SGI version then. :slight_smile:

(Zsolt) #6

It’s very good to hear from you, Ton. I hope your plans work out! Blender can’t and won’t disappear.
The community idea is good, I’m sure the large user base will make a lot of content for Blender. We support you all the way!


(Green) #7

Great to hear more info.
I wonder if there are any projects on the net today that implement this type of pay for the source model.
At first look it doesnt appear to fit the meaning of the word opensource, offcourse I cannot be sure since I havent seen the actual license.

Im just wondering if anyone have some thoughts on how this type of development would work in reality.

(Timothy) #8


A few days ago I posted a question about this at a forum,… it has 2 replies (though not very interesting replies)


(kos) #9

great to hear you Ton…my best wishes are with you.but can you afford to publish the blender-creator(v-2.24 or 2.25) just for the shake of the free blender users? virtually the days of the publisher is over i why not publish the free blender-2.25.we really need that.and about the will-be blender updates please pay attention to a raytracer and ofcourse softbody dynamics.

(overextrude) #10


Thank you for taking the time to let us know what’s going on. I hope a solution can be found that will allow Creator users to pursue their interests at a raasonable cost, and to hopefully, continue its improvement.

(A2597) #11

Great to hear that Blender isn’t dead!
Keep up the good work ton, and I second the opensource idea. it would cut the production cost to almost nil, and at the same time, allow you to continue selling the manuals, etc.

(ScottishPig) #12

Hooray! This is very good news. I am pleased.

(Goo) #13

We’re all glad to hear from you Ton, and I’m sure evey single Blender Head out there sends you his or her best wishes. Blender was your dream and I’m sorry that it’s come to this, but it seems like you’ve got a good plan worked out. As for the web page, why not let Elysiun fill that role. I don’t think Kib would mind, and he’s done a great job for the month or so the Blender page has been down. Of course, he may want to get his life back, but it can’t hurt to ask. :wink: Anyways, best of wishes to you all.


(SkyWriter) #14

yeah, and my dials+buttons version,
and motion tracking version, and stereo HMD version, and irisgl version. everything i couldn’t get because little peecee’s didn’t have it too.

(Pablosbrain) #15

Very good to get some “Real” news on NaNs current state. I was just thinking “I wish we’d get some news from NaN.” And behold, here it is. Thank you very much for the update. We will wait on the edge of our seats during the next couple weeks to hear more!

(Goofster) #16

Whatever the outcome will be, it will include continuation of Blender and the user community

glad to hear it. this community is great, and we proved that we can survive anything. This alos takes away some doubt about NaN (holding) not taking into account the community. Thanks alot Ton for these promising words


(theeth) #17

yeah, and my dials+buttons version[/quote]

Would you make a punch card version for me pleeeze :wink:

Glad to hear news from you, Ton. :slight_smile:


(SkyWriter) #18

D+B is a sophisticated input device without a cheap implementation in the peecee world. to imply that it’s obsolete only because it’s old suggests a marginal familiarity with the history of the computer industry. (insert obligitory smiley face here)

(Briggs) #19

D+B is a sophisticated input device without a cheap implementation in the peecee world. to imply that it’s obsolete only because it’s old suggests a marginal familiarity with the history of the computer industry. (insert obligitory smiley face here)

Somone just got the smack put down on em!

BTW, isn’t irisGL depreceated? what advantages/disadvantages does it have over OpenGL?

(dreamsgate) #20

I am so happy to hear from you. You will never have any idea how much blender has meant and continues to mean to me. It has opened a whole new world of creativity for me and I love you and NaN for giving me this wonderful program.

P.S. I’m even using blender to model the image for my wedding invitations.