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Alan Cooper

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  1. Like
    Alan Cooper reacted to santa in A way to make formZ more popular (but you won't like it...)   
    Unfortunately, this conversation has been on an endless repeating loop for quite some time now. It's high time something was done about it.
     
  2. Like
    Alan Cooper reacted to Simbio3D in Left field, far out suggestion   
    What about an update post every month of what's cooking from AutoDesSys in regards to Formz in terms of bugs and improvements.
  3. Like
    Alan Cooper reacted to UVWXYZ in Why form•z is not popular any more:   
    In other news, but fitting right into this discussion:
    Affinity Designer, on sale 50% off: 27,99 €
    Affinity Photo, on sale 50% off: 27,99 €
    Affinity Publisher, on sale 50% off: 27,99 €
    Fast, stable and easy software, with Apple Silicon support results in a forum with 600.000 postings, and being a serious rival for adobe, finally.
    I seriously suggest, Serif should buy AutoDesSys. Or at least team up.
    Serif would enter the windows world and 3D, also get hold onto dwg, AutoDesSys would gain insight to a modern interface, programming style and integrate extended 2d layout capabilities.
    Serif form•z 2023 would cost 99 € / $ and blow sketchup into insignificance.
     
    btw, this is serif's mission statement:
     
    We started out in 1987 developing creative software for Windows and built up a decent suite of apps over a 20-year period. But there were problems. Apart from these legacy apps being locked into Windows, they were becoming bloated, hard to maintain and the core foundation of them was not built with consideration of the latest developments in hardware.
    So, we decided to start again. We threw all that old code away and began development of the Affinity range from scratch. It was a big gamble and turned into a massive project - it took the best part of 5 years from writing the first line of code to releasing Affinity Designer, our first Affinity app, in October 2014.
    Since then we’ve not looked back. We’ve now got a full creative suite of applications covering photo editing, desktop publishing and graphic design which have won the biggest awards available in the industry and have been adopted by over a million customers worldwide.
    This success has been great, but our main focus remains on pushing the boundaries of what is possible with creative apps. We love doing what we do, and we are just getting started.
     
  4. Like
    Alan Cooper reacted to Hugo in Why form•z is not popular any more:   
    How interesting, this is my suggestion, more or less,  in the recent past... In posts I commented I suggested to work together with Affinity, because their software/development/concept is an answer in many ways. Good to know more people know about the Affinity suite.
  5. Like
    Alan Cooper reacted to AHDD Designer in Why form•z is not popular any more:   
    Hello Tech
    Will there actually be another statement from you on this topic at some point?
    I mean by that:
    What is the future of Form.Z?
    What are the strategies?
    I would still be very interested in this!
  6. Like
    Alan Cooper reacted to AHDD Designer in A way to make formZ more popular (but you won't like it...)   
    Hello Tech
    Will there actually be another statement from you on this topic at some point?
    I mean by that:
    What is the future of Form.Z?
    What are the strategies?
    I would still be very interested in this!
  7. Like
    Alan Cooper reacted to Tech in A way to make formZ more popular (but you won't like it...)   
    This assumption is simply not true. Over 95% of the form•Z code base is platform independent and we develop and test on all platforms simultaneously (i.e. not “ported”). The platform dependent code is nearly all related to interface. The file translators are over 99% platform independent. Developing for multiple platforms actually makes the code better as the various development and testing tools can identify different areas for improvement in efficiency and stability. 
    We have no plans to drop macOS (or Windows).
    CUDA and RTX are great technologies for rendering performance, but offer no improvement to the linear double precision nature of modeling operations. We are also disappointed that Nvida is no longer supported on macOS, however the CPU rendering on macOS with V-Ray is very good and handles large models with ease. Performance alone is not the only reason to choose V-Ray as it offers excellent rendering features as well (not all of which are available in RTX rendering).

     
  8. Like
    Alan Cooper reacted to Hugo in A way to make formZ more popular (but you won't like it...)   
    I really like the comment Tech gave to explain about development. There are just too many people around who KNOW better and how it should be.
    My compliments to TECH...
  9. Like
    Alan Cooper got a reaction from ZTEK in Why isn't formz more popular?   
    Form Z pro is brilliant for woodworkers. It covers a very wide spectrum, so there are some special tools we appreciate and others we never use. Marketing to specific audiences, pointing out features of specific advantage is key. A few years ago there was a big push for V-Ray, yet not everyone needs that, I don't need realism, just a good impression is enough. The features I as a woodworker really appreciate are the extremely fast basic modelling with good viewing controls, excellent object and group management, information management, renamer extension, and I just feel very at home and productive with it. Form Z is still very relevant today and probably always will be, it just lacks the marketing to do it justice. I can't speak for V9 but as far as V8.6 is concerned, it is a reliable essential tool for me, (you get to know what might cause a crash or hang, and it is much improved as far as that is concerned.) I see no good reason to look elsewhere and would never go back to Sketchup. I expect that part of the reason why there is so little activity on the forum is that many users just get on with their working routine, most problems have already been covered and rectified. Lack of activity doesn't attract new users though, better marketing and especially You Tube, as well as social media is essential to getting that valuable stream of new users. I doubt it has to be any more expensive than employing someone who can both use the program and do social media. I expect that investment would pay dividends. I hope so because I would love to see FormZ to take a higher profile and become useful to more users. Definately underrated.
  10. Like
    Alan Cooper reacted to CJTFORM-Z in Why isn't formz more popular?   
    Hi Mattedmonds & all,
    I guess I'm a FORM-Z lurka, interested in the product, but never quite got around to making that purchase. Even as far back as bonZai3d, but went the SketchUP route instead. I was on the verge for sure of purchasing at one point, but when Matthew Holewinski left, it seemed FZ-HQ enthusiasm declined as well in my opinion. I lost confidence in their business model.....if one existed. Architecturally speaking, FZ has good parametric construction tools, doors, windows stairs & roofs etc, so this alone should've had more architectural users over from the SU camp. So what went wrong ? well, my case in point, it was product confidence, no real marketing & new release versions taking forever doesn't help.

    Looking back at MH's videos is shear joy, but I'm now on a different path as not going down the SU subscription direction, strange how things have turned out. 

    I'd also like to note, I've never been brain washed into purchasing AutoDesk products, so overpiced for what they offer. I've used DataCAD & SketchUP for years now & currently learning ArchLine-XP, a BIM capable product with an enthusiastic company one can talk to with lots of YOUTUBE video tutorials.
  11. Like
    Alan Cooper reacted to mattedmonds in Why isn't formz more popular?   
    As I mentioned, Autodesk is an extremely frustrating developer to work with. There have been VERY simple feature requests that have stuck around for 10 years without resolution. There has been ZERO development in their site tools for 10+ years.... all because they see other programs in their suite as better suited (Infraworks and Civil 3D). But to get the best out of all these programs requires yet another cloud subscription that costs $1000 PER USER/PER YEAR. For large companies like mine, its easier to absorb software costs, for small shops, not so easy.
    At this point, it is what it is. For medium to large AEC firms, Autodesk owns the market in most big cities in the US, while all others are scrapping for a percentage. ArchiCAD has disappeared almost entirely in many cities because they refused to offer cross-grade pricing discounts to lure Autodesk owners over to their platform. Bentley is in similar shape but survived thanks to their Army Core of Engineers foothold. Vectorworks appeals to the small-firm sector and will likely survive. Sketchup is a toy software people make work on small projects. You can fight it or you can re-think your position in the market. 
  12. Like
    Alan Cooper reacted to rickdm in Why isn't formz more popular?   
    I am another 25+ year user. Had Chris Yessios as a Professor in school (way before from.z), and started on the first Windows version in 94 (?). Yes, there are things that could be done to improve this program, but the first thing you need to do is let people know you are NOT DEAD! Last time you came to the AIA convention (2015 maybe?) I talked to several folks who were surprised you were still around. But you stopped coming. Get out there. Post articles and case studies on your web site and link it to Facebook and linkedin. Get your users to send you cool images and post them several times a week on Instagram. I know money must be tight, but you are going to have to spend some money on marketing staff to get you out there. Don't die a slow death, take a risk, get out there while you still can.
    I am getting close to retiring, you've got to get some new folks in here!
    rickdm
     
  13. Like
    Alan Cooper reacted to Andrew West in Why isn't formz more popular?   
    Over the years I have made many comments about where I think Form.z should focus their attention.  The one thing I never mentioned was social media  marketing since that is beyond my level of expertise (which shows in my shrinking client list).  All I hear lately is how social media is the only thing people use to discover new products. I am not sure if that applies to technical software but it certainly wouldn't hurt to try.  How to create "buzz" about your product in the media world seems to be done by specialists now.  While I am not one, I would be more than happy to get paid to be a social media  influencer or a Youtube star. That kind of shallow meaningless existence is something I just haven't tried yet.   On the other hand, I still believe that having a stellar reputation for support and  rock solid software are indispensable to old timers like me.  Those are the areas that I feel have been the most challenging over the last decade.  However, every once and a while, they introduce something that I think will really help expand their base.  The two that come to mind immediately are V-ray and TwinMotion/ Unreal.  I just hope that they can  aggressively promote these new features to people outside this forum.  Furthermore, adding more direct integration with other third party software will be the key to survival for any 3d software. Unfortunately, that is probably  going to be expensive.
  14. Like
    Alan Cooper reacted to setz in Happy Holidays…   
    I was saddened because I thought we weren’t going to see one this year and was happily surprised Christmas morning. Cheers and Merry Christmas Bernd!
  15. Like
    Alan Cooper reacted to bmeissner in Happy Holidays…   
    … and all the best to you all!

    Bernd
    (Note: 23 years of FormZ modeled Christmas cards :-))
  16. Like
    Alan Cooper reacted to Tech in New update 9.0.6   
    The cause of the hanging in Hugo's file was determined to be an excess of empty animation tracks. The development team is devising a better way to handle these in the future.
  17. Like
    Alan Cooper got a reaction from archigraphica in New update 9.0.6   
    The sad thing in my opinion is that FZ has never been good at marketing. I discovered FormZ far too late having come accross a mention of Bonzai 3d (the old name for Junior FormZ) on a Sketchup 8 Forum when Google ran Sketchup. Having used Turbocad pro for many many years, constantly looking for alternatives, eventually moving to Sketchup 8, struggled with that for a year, and when I eventually became aware of the existence of FormZ quickly realised how much more powerful and fast FZ was than Sketchup to model with (apart from some bugs which would crash my system from time to time) and came on board. But I should have become aware of FZ  several years earlier. Lack of marketing was the reason I didn't because I had be reading and searching and trying out other software. The way ahead is to minimise any risk of the program crashing, so bugs don't involve loss of any operations, then market effectively. I believe there is still time to make this work, although admittedly a lot of water has already passed under the bridge.
  18. Like
    Alan Cooper got a reaction from Mike_Concentric in New update 9.0.6   
    Thanks so much to all you guys who are effectively beta testers. I am watching from a distance because as far as I am concerned it is very clear that V9 continues to remain at the 'beta' stage. So pleased Autodessys is holding back on the publicity at the moment because it would have resulted in bad press. I do look forward to V9 maturing into a solid version eventually.
    Analogy: Super-car with faulty brakes.
  19. Like
    Alan Cooper got a reaction from Mike_Concentric in New update 9.0.6   
    Thanks so much to all you guys who are effectively beta testers. I am watching from a distance because as far as I am concerned it is very clear that V9 continues to remain at the 'beta' stage. So pleased Autodessys is holding back on the publicity at the moment because it would have resulted in bad press. I do look forward to V9 maturing into a solid version eventually.
    Analogy: Super-car with faulty brakes.
  20. Like
    Alan Cooper reacted to FZnoob in New update 9.0.6   
    When they get to V9.5 let me know. That seems to be when things are sorted.
    Until then I will stay with 8.5.6
  21. Like
    Alan Cooper got a reaction from ZTEK in what's new webinar   
    Another video showing organising a piece of furniture in FormZ for orderly construction. Plus some other tips.
     
  22. Like
    Alan Cooper reacted to setz in what's new webinar   
    Modo and FZ are great companions.  I use modo for complicated organic subdivision cage modeling (because it has really good soft selection tools) and then bring the object into FZ where I convert to subdivision and then convert into nurbs.  Works really well at creating super complicated organic nurbs shapes that can then be further worked on in FZ with booles etc.  Many parts of the mech were done this way (some are pure FZ hard surface modeling.)  The parts in this model ended up as separate nurbs solids exports for CNC machining.

  23. Like
    Alan Cooper got a reaction from ZTEK in what's new webinar   
    Another video showing organising a piece of furniture in FormZ for orderly construction. Plus some other tips.
     
  24. Like
    Alan Cooper got a reaction from ZTEK in what's new webinar   
    Another video showing organising a piece of furniture in FormZ for orderly construction. Plus some other tips.
     
  25. Like
    Alan Cooper reacted to ¢hris £und in what's new webinar   
    Doh!  Sorry for the misinterpretation!  Yes, I agree with the last sentiment!  Too, it has to do a lot with familiarity.  Some people are extremely capable and efficient with hard-side modeling in Modo because they never knew better.  And they will always beat somebody like me simply because I already knew formZ by 10 years roughly by the time I attempted Modo.
    Regardless, they are both great tools.  I just think each leans heavily in the direction they want to.  And justifyingly so.
     
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