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snow

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  1. Like
    snow got a reaction from archigraphica in New update 9.0.6   
    It's nice that formZ is NOT on the bottom of this list when searching "the best 3d modeling programs" on G2. https://www.g2.com/categories/3d-modeling
    It's also nice that there are a number of pretty current reviews of the software.  Perhaps word of mouth is working a little bit.  But there's still a severe lack of exposure of the software.  ADS could use a social media manager of sorts and maybe commission it's end users to create "how-to" videos for their YouTube page.  
  2. Like
    snow got a reaction from archigraphica in New update 9.0.6   
    It's nice that formZ is NOT on the bottom of this list when searching "the best 3d modeling programs" on G2. https://www.g2.com/categories/3d-modeling
    It's also nice that there are a number of pretty current reviews of the software.  Perhaps word of mouth is working a little bit.  But there's still a severe lack of exposure of the software.  ADS could use a social media manager of sorts and maybe commission it's end users to create "how-to" videos for their YouTube page.  
  3. Like
    snow reacted to AsOne in Importing 3rd party models   
    I am an architect.  I use FormZ as my primary 3D modeler on every project.  I transfer that information to Vectorworks for construction drawings or anything involving notes, text, formatting on a sheet.  I have built a system for the two to "talk" and it's an ok system.  It could be a lot better if FormZ had the basic capability to reference other file types (DWG in my case).  I would LOVE to see Referenced files that are always placed at the same world coordinates (relative to a 0,0,0, point).  That way if I need to import consultant data, another 3D model, or my own 2D work from Vectorworks I can do it ONE TIME and then every time the referenced file is updated I won't have to re import.  This would allow fluid and fast communication between two programs.  Essentially extending the new Reference file capability to file types beyond .fmz.  I know the current Reference file capability leaves a lot to be desired, but at least it is a start.
    I agree 100% with the need to clean up the UI, fix the bugs, and improve import export.  I would rather ditch some of the customization of the UI for stability.   Occasionally I have to reset the Workspace and I don't mess around with the palettes anymore now I have them where I want them.  For a new user the UI would be difficult.  Palettes still can get completely lost and the scrolling speed through the dock is very slow.  Even the fact that I have to hold Option to scroll the Dock is unintuitive.  Who would know this if you just started in the program?  I really miss having a scroll bar in the dock.
    However I believe the desire to have a "one stop shop" is unrealistic in todays marketplace IMHO.  Sure it might work out for one person, but is there a program that does it all - for everyone?  There isn't really.  Sure some do people find one program that works, but for many a hybrid approach is the best way to go.  There are too many diverse needs and workflows out there.  I could care less about FormZ adding tools to add notes, dimensions, text.  Useless for me.  I would rather do that in a program already well suited for that task.  There would need to be such a quantum leap in FormZ's ability there to get me to use it given how far advanced Vectorworks is in this regard.  There are other priorities in my opinion for FormZ.  I understand why they came out with Layout (I presume to compete with SketchUp) and I use Layout to export my information (plans, sections, elevations) to Vectorworks, but I don't need them to spend time trying to make it a full fledged production program.  
    For some the modeling in SketchUp is just enough and so is their layout program.  For me it isn't nearly robust enough in either department.  Does Rhino, Modo, Cinema have a way to create construction documents, full of notes, dimensions, and specifications?  REVIT may be amazing at production work, but it sucks at fast fluid modeling.  Is there a program that models fast, also has amazing rendering capabilities, AND produces construction documents?  And that works equally well for a one man shop, a small firm, a big firm, product design, architecture, visualization specialists?   
    I hear the complaints about 2D work.  Seems legit and it would help my workflow.   I guess I don't care that much as I can do that work in Vectorworks.  However, until we get referenced DWG files it still takes way too much time to keep reimporting information from outside the program.
    I would rather FormZ concentrate on its strength - fast fluid solid modeling and quick texturing/rendering.  At the same time the weaknesses need to be fixed:  bugs, UI issues, and then there needs to be some sort of marketing to expand the user base and outreach of the program.
    If anything I would rather it become or specialized not more general.  Of course I'm biased so I want that to be in architecture.  Trying to be a program that solves everyones problems is not possible.
  4. Like
    snow reacted to FZnoob in New update 9.0.6   
    I don't see FZ as ever being more than a niche company. They just don't have the developmental or marketing dollars to compete with the big boys, and I don't think they have anything special a larger company might consider buying out. My employer dictates that I use it, and I am ok with that. It's a decent software and for the most part I can do my work. However, If I had my choice I would not be using it. I'm not being harsh it's just my honest opinion. Since I started using FZ with V7 it seems to follow the same pattern that it takes a while for them to get it sorted out. With that being said everyone stay safe and happy holidays.
  5. Like
    snow reacted to Justin Montoya in Importing 3rd party models   
    I love FormZ for it's general solid modeling quickness.  Especially, tools like the 3D Wall tool, Hole Tool, and Reshape are incredibly fast and powerful due to their visual interactivity.  The same goes for the basic texture mapping and it's great visual interactivity.  But recent changes to the UI (Stupidly separate and BUGGY Inspector Palette, Tool Options palette that won't stay still, Missing and ghosting palettes, cut off text, etc) have made even modeling quickly in it an annoyance that it doesn't need to be.  FormZ's UI is now so oddly put together that it looks like pieces from completely different puzzles.  It's entirely fixable, but we are rarely seeing these updates despite many requests from all sorts of users.  This worries me because UI changes should be some of the easiest to rectify. 
    Then there's this importing 3rd party models problem.  It's interesting to see how many other people are starting to really struggle with this in FormZ.  There's many things that import better into FormZ 6,7,8 than 9, and many things that just never imported well to begin with.  Given the likely future of 3D work requiring collaborating with all sorts of 3D assets, this should be of particular focus on any future formZ update, as without it, there may be no future for FormZ outside of basic modeling and texturing.  Sad but true.
    You will laugh at how easily Rhino imports outside file types compared to FormZ.  Even basic things like floorplan DWGs come in to Rhino perfectly just like they would in AutoCAD, with all the Blocks, Text, Hatch, Colors, etc, and you can easily have multiple, complex plans visible in the modeling window without it slowing to a crawl like the same file does in FormZ.  Why does FormZ slow down with just imported lines from a DWG?
    Mesh 3D files like the furniture models we commonly need, come in great to Rhino and don't choke up the program at all like they do in FormZ.  This whole issue has become the achilles heel of FormZ.  It's an amazingly fast and fluid modeler, but it's inability to play nice with outside geometry is really hurting its capabilities now.  Like Andrew said, I believe this is due to the 'solids' nature of FormZ and most other popular modeling applications are surface modelers.  Still, formZ will need to fix this quick to stay remotely relevant.  
    Santa-  Architectural modeling is OK in Rhino, but it sometimes requires a slightly different approach than super speedy FormZ.  It's a Surface modeler originally, but has a solid ... solid toolset too.   Many of the solid tools we use are in there, with different names.  But some will require an extra step or two to first draw the 2D shape you will turn into 3D.  Take the Slab tool in Rhino for instance.  This is most similar to FormZ's 3D Wall tool, but first requires you to draw your line, polylines, curves, before you can then start the Slab tool to make it an extruded 3D wall with both height and thickness.  Whereas FormZ can often do that on the fly in a single tool depending on the shape. 
    BUT, anything you want to learn is easy to find because of the incredible online documentation in Rhino.  Videos GALORE detailing anything you could possibly want to learn in Rhino means becoming self taught is a real possibility.  Lynda.com (free with local Library card) has a nice selection of courses from Dave Schultze on Rhino and VRay for Rhino.  This sort of accessibility is really intriguing when it can be very difficult to figure out how to use a new software.  Just Google "Rhino ______"  and you'll find whatever you need.  Rhino also has a huge library of plugins and a very active and vibrant community.  I wish the modeling and basic texturing was a bit easier, but it's not bad once you get into it after a week or so.
    I've taken tutorials on many other 3D programs and understand the basics in them.  After 15 years of professional work with FormZ, no other 3D software offers the combination of speed and truly accurate and visual modeling that FormZ does.  Rhino comes the closest, but needs a little more input to do the same thing.  SketchUp comes close but is a purely surface modeler and a very basic one at that.  So, I'd ask you how much time do you spend on modeling vs the rest of the process?  At some point, the time saved modeling gets easily wasted on these other FormZ problems.  
    Hope this helps you all out there struggling with the same things.  I'd truly love for FormZ to be our 1 stop solution to all things 3D and Rendering, but until these problems get recognized and resolved, we all need to be more vocal about it. 
  6. Like
    snow reacted to allanjl in Phantom numbers   
    Yes! I thought maybe it was just my video card. But I see it happens to others. 
    Tech, you have to put yourself in our shoes. I have attended large meetings with our client and consultants, they show their models on the big screen, then we go over ours. When things like this show up, it makes everyone involved looked bad.
  7. Like
    snow reacted to SJD in what's new webinar   
    I think online tutorials are essential for the survival of any software package these days however 'amazing' the app may be. I learnt the old way, as many of you here I imagine, from reading through the manual, trial and error, experimentation etc. because online resources didn't exist for anyone back in the day. Expensive face to face training was the only option then.
    That's all changed and If potential buyers cannot quickly evaluate a packages potential by seeing evidence of what it's capable of and how to use it they will quickly move onto the competition. The fact most of FZ's tutorials are over 7 years old is laughable and would put me off straight away if I were starting out again. I was looking to expand my own knowledge of FZ and get into more asset based modelling and sub division surfaces but became increasing frustrated at the complete lack of any meaningful tutorials. I've since moved to Modo - sure, it's a bit of a learning curve but it's been made a heck of a lot easier by using the wealth of high quality teaching material out there. I've learnt more in 3 months than I ever did in 20 years of using FormZ.
  8. Like
    snow reacted to Justin Montoya in Mac OS BigSUR With Issues, Render Zone Not Working   
    RenderZone is a REALLY OLD rendering software at this point and it can no longer be easily updated.  I wonder what it's future really is here in 2020.  Combine that with the fact that Apple is constantly bullying developers and cutting off other important software (CUDA, OpenGL, etc), I think it should be phased out and replaced with a more modern, Open Source renderer like Cycles which is at least still being updated regularly.  
    Cycles is arguably a better choice for the default engine for future formZ.  The source code is available under the Apache License v2, and can be integrated in open source and commercial software. Cycles is natively integrated in Blender, Poser, and Rhino. The Cycles4D plugin for Cinema4D and a plugin for 3ds Max are available as well.  It's cross compatible for Mac, Windows, and Linux too.
    I've seen some work out of Cycles that gives even V-Ray or Maxwell a run for their money.  Check it out - https://www.cycles-renderer.org/
  9. Like
    snow got a reaction from Mike_Concentric in Exploded 3D Drawings   
    This would be great.  Or perhaps something along the lines of model configurations like in SolidWorks or Rhino would be really beneficial.  Duplicating a model to show an exploded version is not ideal in terms of data (or convenience).  If you could assign configurations (and name the configurations) it would save a lot of headaches and duplicate geometry. 
  10. Like
    snow got a reaction from vva in Deleting a custom palette   
    Yes.  But the issue with giving up formZ is the speed in which I work and the ability to share my files with SolidWorks users.  VectorWorks and Rhino come close to formZ in terms or how geometry is modeled and sharing with SolidWorks (Rhino is arguably better because .3dm files can be opened directly into SolidWorks), but if you look at the forums of each respective software you will find droves users posting about bugs, suggestions and other grievances. 
    I think the more you use a certain piece of software then the more aware you are of it's shortcomings which makes the OTHER software look so refined and polished, only to find out years later you're again aware of all it's shortcomings.  wash, rinse, repeat. 
  11. Like
    snow got a reaction from vva in Deleting a custom palette   
    Yes.  But the issue with giving up formZ is the speed in which I work and the ability to share my files with SolidWorks users.  VectorWorks and Rhino come close to formZ in terms or how geometry is modeled and sharing with SolidWorks (Rhino is arguably better because .3dm files can be opened directly into SolidWorks), but if you look at the forums of each respective software you will find droves users posting about bugs, suggestions and other grievances. 
    I think the more you use a certain piece of software then the more aware you are of it's shortcomings which makes the OTHER software look so refined and polished, only to find out years later you're again aware of all it's shortcomings.  wash, rinse, repeat. 
  12. Like
    snow got a reaction from vva in Deleting a custom palette   
    Yes.  But the issue with giving up formZ is the speed in which I work and the ability to share my files with SolidWorks users.  VectorWorks and Rhino come close to formZ in terms or how geometry is modeled and sharing with SolidWorks (Rhino is arguably better because .3dm files can be opened directly into SolidWorks), but if you look at the forums of each respective software you will find droves users posting about bugs, suggestions and other grievances. 
    I think the more you use a certain piece of software then the more aware you are of it's shortcomings which makes the OTHER software look so refined and polished, only to find out years later you're again aware of all it's shortcomings.  wash, rinse, repeat. 
  13. Like
    snow got a reaction from vva in Deleting a custom palette   
    Yes.  But the issue with giving up formZ is the speed in which I work and the ability to share my files with SolidWorks users.  VectorWorks and Rhino come close to formZ in terms or how geometry is modeled and sharing with SolidWorks (Rhino is arguably better because .3dm files can be opened directly into SolidWorks), but if you look at the forums of each respective software you will find droves users posting about bugs, suggestions and other grievances. 
    I think the more you use a certain piece of software then the more aware you are of it's shortcomings which makes the OTHER software look so refined and polished, only to find out years later you're again aware of all it's shortcomings.  wash, rinse, repeat. 
  14. Like
    snow got a reaction from vva in Deleting a custom palette   
    Yes.  But the issue with giving up formZ is the speed in which I work and the ability to share my files with SolidWorks users.  VectorWorks and Rhino come close to formZ in terms or how geometry is modeled and sharing with SolidWorks (Rhino is arguably better because .3dm files can be opened directly into SolidWorks), but if you look at the forums of each respective software you will find droves users posting about bugs, suggestions and other grievances. 
    I think the more you use a certain piece of software then the more aware you are of it's shortcomings which makes the OTHER software look so refined and polished, only to find out years later you're again aware of all it's shortcomings.  wash, rinse, repeat. 
  15. Like
    snow reacted to Justin Montoya in vray image autosave   
    I agree it can save you time if setup correctly.  However, by DEFAULT it should not be turned ON to save files in a place I never go or look at.  So, I think it should be turned OFF by default, that way If a user wants to use this feature, they should need to turn it ON and then pick their desired location for saving.  
    It's kind of like applications automatically installing hideous desktop icons.  It's extremely inefficient to use and organize and quite frankly, just an ugly method of creating litter on the desktop, left over from failed computing ideas 20 years ago.
  16. Like
    snow reacted to santa in Cleanup Show Palettes command + Hide form•Z...   
    While we are in this jovial mood, I heard two lame (but don't tell them that) jokes from the kids:
    1. "Q: What did one wall say to the other? A: I'll meet you at the corner."
    2. "Q: What did one cannibal say to the other when he saw a tourist bus? A: Not tinned food again!"
    Boom, boom......
  17. Like
    snow reacted to bbuxton in How to export OBJ to Blender and Maya?   
    Try triangulating the model.
    It is easier to help if you attach a screenshot of your export settings along with the file.
    One problem with FormZ that has always been present is that the file dialogues allow you to enter settings that don't work.
    This results in a file without geometry or other problems. If possible reset FormZ preferences and try again. The default settings for file export work for almost every situation. 
    If you need to change something such as scale or orientation make sure you keep a reference to the default settings. Autodessys PLEASE add a reset to default option to the file dialogues. It would save users a lot of unnecessary grief.
  18. Haha
    snow got a reaction from ¢hris £und in form•Z 8.6 Update Released   
    hahaha lovely description.  
  19. Like
    snow reacted to ¢hris £und in form•Z 8.6 Update Released   
    Snow, 
    For roughly a 4 year period, I worked for a fruit stand computer company as a computer tech (AMCT was the official title, or more pompously called a “genius” (which none of us actually were.))
    turns out, though nobody else recommends it directly, that was a common technique I employed almost daily for pretty much any app and for the operating system itself.   There were many times where I would strip out the entire library folder and rebuild it manually, reboot, to force a new set, then rebuild the library using a divide and conquer technique. To both put back as much of the functionality as I could for the user, and to narrow down what the problem actually was.  It was a bit more complicated than what the above suggests, or could be any way.
    While there were better people at fixing and diagnosing hardware issues, I was the best (at the time) at fixing software issues. The software issues were the tough ones.
    Regardless, the point is, yes it is fairly low level, but the most effective way to fix a host of software issues.  And bizarre issues too.  Something I called a “soft lobotomy”.
    €£
  20. Like
    snow got a reaction from David Lemelin in Rendering Time   
    Ahh yes, the ol' cheesegrater mac.  What a gem!  Hopefully we will see a preview of the 2019 Mac Pro at WWDC.  I'm hoping for a bigger jump in their entire pro lineup.  I'm still holding on to a Late 2013 MacBook Pro because I refuse to own one with a touch bar *eye roll*
     
  21. Like
    snow got a reaction from FZnoob in Why isn't formz more popular?   
    Honestly I have a hard time seriously recommending formZ to other designers.  Yes I am very fast in creating models but find a seasoned 3DS/C4D/Sketchup/Rhino user and they could likely build the same model within a comparable time frame. 
    Unfortunately speed isn't the only thing that matters.  3DS and C4D might lack a level of precision that formZ inherently has, but there's a level of parametric modeling that formZ doesn't have i.e. live booleans.  Couple this with NUMEROUS 3rd party plugins and rendering engines and you have a hard time trying to pry a visual artist from those programs.  Blender and Modo can be tossed in this mix too. 
    C4D also has one of the cleanest interfaces in the business, especially considering the scale of the program.  Blender and Modo both have VERY nice interfaces that are modern and sleek.  3DS is a little behind in this category but they have the backing of Autodesk so it plays well with everything else that is popular from Autodesk (Revit, Maya, Inventor...).
    Sketchup is extremely basic and intuitive right out of the box, which is very attractive, but the program has the ability to grow with the user because of the extension warehouse.  Don't want to manually fillet that edge?  Well there's a plugin for that.  It was also free for a very long time and was initially backed by Google.
    Rhino, IMHO is the most comparable program to formZ but I find it a bit more flexible.  The Rhino for Mac interface is super clean and the more I work with the program the more aware I've become of it's expansive tool set.  However it's not inherently a solid modeler so there always seems to be an extra step or to to get what I need to the engineers in my office.  It also has a LOT of 3rd party plugin/rendering engine support.  Oh, and Grasshopper is awesome.
    I feel like formZ is best with users who know it best.  I know that if I recommend it to someone they would undoubtedly come across one of the many "quirks" of formZ and I'd have to steer them away from certain tools or actions to prevent a crash (i.e. components).  Having known a number of people who work in these other programs and having worked in them myself I can see why they are so popular and why many never return back to a previous program.  
    The unpopularity of formZ isn't because it's a bad program.  It's not.  It's a very GOOD program..... BUT.... the many other 3D modelers/visuallizers that have a number of pros that outweigh the cons compared to formZ.
     
  22. Like
    snow reacted to AndyD in Can anyone convert this small Cinema 4D file in .fmz format?   
    Thanks a lot, snow, you saved me a lot of time!
    Andrea
     
  23. Like
    snow got a reaction from Justin Montoya in Tool Options bug   
    I found recently something really useful with InDesign:  Immediately after you lunch the app press "Ctrl + Alt + Shift". A dialogue will pop up asking if you want to reset preferences.
    formZ ABSOLUTELY NEEDS this.  resetting preferences isn't a fix... it's basically a workflow at this point and any and all workflow shortcuts are welcome
  24. Like
    snow reacted to ZTEK in New material naming   
    +1
    and...
    I really would like to see that FZ maintains the size of Materials, generics or textured, and not apply the default size when you copy and paste to a New Project or from one project to an other or when you import through Add To Project, etc...
    Thanks for listening!... and thank you ADS for this such great tool!
  25. Like
    snow reacted to Justin Montoya in Open GL Visuals - Deleted   
    Yes, we have very basic OpenGL based rendering, but it could be updated and greatly improved! 
    For Example...
    Emissive materials can work with OpenGL!
    Line Quality could be improved.
    Bump mapping quality could be improved.
    Shading Quality improved.
    Shadows Improved.
    Lighting types could be improved.
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