Author Topic: High ongoing cost, relatively low "improvements".  (Read 2829 times)

Offline jwiede

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High ongoing cost, relatively low "improvements".
« on: July 24, 2018, 10:22:28 PM »
Long-time lurker customer, just going to say my piece and leave it at that... 

I think the price charged for maintenance on top of fairly expensive upgrade pricing (as percentage of full-buy cost) is asking too much.  I just haven't seen enough improvements (esp. outside rendering) to justify both upgrade costs and annual maintenance on top of that.  That the 4.2 release occurred shortly after maintenance expiration for those of us who pre-ordered V4 when offered also feels a bit craven, frankly.  I do not feel the level of improvements overall between V3->V4 and V4.0->V4.2 even comes close to justifying both upgrade pricing as well as an additional year of maintenance on top of that (as in, >$500 total, for a product whose new license is $700). 

I still continually encounter UI/UX issues with navigation and object manipulation, the "population" support is still direly lacking, content import/export is still very limited, content management is basic at best, and though atmospheric rendering is great, atmospheric generation is very limited in areas like "hero cloud" creation/editing, and so forth.  I see the renderer getting improvements, but it feels like much of the rest of the program lags significantly behind other packages like Vue, Houdini's CloudFx, and so forth -- especially in terms of control/editing UI/UX.  The situation with documentation and example content has been and remains seriously deficient.  If I'd been seeing continuous and significant improvements across those areas, I might feel differently, but that's not what has happened.

I really think you need to rethink your pricing and maintenance structure, or else significantly improve the pace of development across the entire program.  Focusing all improvements into fairly confined areas of the program just isn't yielding broad and/or deep enough improvements across Terragen as a whole (IMO) to justify the relative ongoing costs.  As it stands, I haven't renewed my maintenance, and will definitely be exploring alternatives (of which there are increasing numbers these days).

Just one (reasonably long-time) customer's feelings.
 
« Last Edit: July 24, 2018, 10:43:49 PM by jwiede »

Offline Prometheus

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Re: High ongoing cost, relatively low "improvements".
« Reply #1 on: July 25, 2018, 03:17:47 PM »
Hi..

I agree with the parts regarding object navigation manipulation ...that alone may be the biggest factor now for me not to consider a purchase, I am used to Lightwave3d and we have a lot of folks over at the newtek forums..and many of them chime in with regards to their feelings about navigation and moving, or trying to rotate clouds...which options are quite poor in comparison to how lightwave or the competing product vue does it.

The UI needs a serious overhaul as well, I may be able to workout a mockup on how much more graphicly pleasing it could look, apart from adding obvious x-y-z markers within the object/cloud manipulation value sliders, like the RTP buttons for activating or deactivating shaders, atmosphere etc, they are very hard to see wether or not they have been activated or not..a better color scheme that highlights this better is needed.

For some positive records..previously I just couldnīt stand the previewer and how slow it was when having atmosphere on...it is now much much better, could still use some more speedups ..but it is now at a point that I find it acceptable as for a purchase, which it previously not was...but then again as mentioned, there is still the matter of object manipulation and navigation.

Cloud noise and lighting for clouds and skies are Top notch, far better than vue..but despite this, the UI and object, cloud navigation is still not good enough...I actually would still prefer
Vue despite of the Great quality Terragen can produce.

The camera navigation could also need some more love and attention,  with options to adapt to more traditional move, rotate controls and a four view viewport.

Hope to see some more attention to this, and I would most likely get me a license for terragen.


Offline WASasquatch

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Re: High ongoing cost, relatively low "improvements".
« Reply #2 on: July 25, 2018, 05:22:40 PM »
I'll just add my two cents. I've been using Terragen for over a decade off and on. I haven't been as focused as I have been in the last two years, but I have always loved the program, and the community.

The inherent structure of cloud generation in TG is based on a planet, much like geometry outside of Heightmaps. This makes cloud navigation impractical I'd imagine if I am thinking of what you're thinking like other software's meta clouds. However, a four point viewing mechanic built into the camera system would be beneficial. Maybe a dropdown menu to select viewport, default, of course being the "Camera Eye" itself.

Also, I'm unsure what you mean by more traditional controls? Terragen seems to be using traditional directional oriented buttons for camera panning, tilting, angle, etc. Do you mean quick-access macros like mouse clicks and such? A lot of 3D software has dropped conventional, and traditional buttons for cameras for a long time in place of mouse manipulation.

The UI imo also shouldn't change. The worth of the program, in this field, is not defined by a flashy UI. The way it's designed is pretty straight forward in a defined grid frame layout with everything clearly labeled in text, if not a preview related button or basic file handling quick-access buttons. Lot of newer programs I don't even like to use because they use their UI as a form of artistic expression. Just use basic GUI frameworks. They're speedy and straightforward. :P

For example, I want TG ported over to another GUI which is very similar to what is used now, which would allow Linux compatibility in the future out of box.

Art can be a window into the soul

Offline WASasquatch

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Re: High ongoing cost, relatively low "improvements".
« Reply #3 on: July 25, 2018, 05:41:25 PM »
However, I do agree to some degree about pricing. I feel the program would receive a lot more attention in discussion around the net about options with some adjustments. I've wanted TG for a long time, but with the way Poverty has hit the US, there is not way I could justify the price of this program just to continue learning from. And it'd likely put me further on the street. I already live in a RV driving between parks. It's not like something you can pickup with tons of professional documentation that you than learn and go profit from. It really takes years with emphasis on the S, of practice and effort and attention to TG's quirks. I've used just about every learning resource for TG available free and while it helped me a lot with the basics, a lot of it is really complex with no step by step breakdown of what is actually happening. It took me a couple years really to get by being overwhelmed...

That alone doesn't make TG a good option to begin with when you're a casual customer looking over your options to learn the program for your profession. Luckily I have no profession (anymore, it's a oversaturated market with little interest over the do it yourself options) yet and just want to create worlds in TG and discover ways to do things, so that doesn't bother me. But it's immediately a thought when I think about average people thinking about their options in software when they're already active in the field and wanting to branch out for themselves or firm.

I literally dream in Terragen though (sometimes it's hard to sleep), so I'll always support the program, and if I could afford it, I would throw the money at it. But I do wish it was more... available for everyone. It's price suggests you could become a professional on the same pace as other programs which just simply isn't the case at all. And those other programs prices are justifiable because there simply is enough documentation, and community tutorials to literally become a professional on without schooling. And kids are really showing that up these days with Indie work.

This is a production program, that means the average professional should be able to make back the interest they put into the program in a relatively short time. I don't see that happening with Terragen for the everyday user at all. It's more a donation to a on-going project. A ritzy one at that.
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Offline jwiede

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Re: High ongoing cost, relatively low "improvements".
« Reply #4 on: July 25, 2018, 10:04:33 PM »
It's more a donation to a on-going project. A ritzy one at that.

I'll respond to some of the other comments in a follow-up, but your quote nicely sums up my feelings as well.  Viewed in the context of the larger software market, charging so much for upgrades and maintenance for such a project and rate of improvement just isn't reasonable (IMO). 

I was a full+anim customer for V3, and am a "Terragen 4 Pro" customer for V4, and am (and have been) quite satisfied to pay for ongoing improvements.  I am not satisfied paying such relatively high maintenance and upgrade costs, though, given the ongoing, slow rate of Terragen's development, and particularly in light of the significant (and growing) deficits in important areas like documentation, examples/presets, and similar usability-critical resources.

Offline Kadri

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Re: High ongoing cost, relatively low "improvements".
« Reply #5 on: July 25, 2018, 10:36:18 PM »

I hated the maintenance change since the beginning and was curious if anything would be different, more programmers etc.
Nothing changed much. I am not surprised (after years you kinda know how much new things will be in the newer versions) and won't pay for maintenance. Only when i see enough change for an update.
(jwiede and Prometheus you kinda brought a Lightwave forum feel here  ::)  :) )


« Last Edit: July 25, 2018, 11:01:39 PM by Kadri »

Offline WASasquatch

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Re: High ongoing cost, relatively low "improvements".
« Reply #6 on: July 25, 2018, 11:49:10 PM »
I just feel in a realistic market place to consumer relations, there is a large inequality. The price point seems too high for what is available to the customer without prior comprehensive experience. NO ONE will be able to come here familiar, or a professional, in other programs, and be able to go through documentation, and in a reasonable time make back that money. Products should be worth their face-value, not potential. There are very few professional terragen artists, and like I mentioned, what they discover for professional quality in scenes, they don't often share. I can easily see why, though. Being that person, with the level of quality in your work, and knowing how to do it, leaves you open in the market for prospective contractual work, like some undertake here. Or, from what I see in the industry, Matt himself does. While that's their right to their work, it leaves the community lacking.

Purchasable presets are very nice, but there needs to be more, and feel also encompass larger scale work. I mean, look at other companies and software, they'll provide even commercial assets for testing free of charge, especially for improvement in their software and future methods to improve render times. Disney/Pixar are really big in sharing certain high-stress and complicated scenes because understanding them, and mastering them, is key to improving the whole field.

Like I've mentioned, I've gone through everything that is free, and it's highly unconstructive content that doesn't offer much in the terms of education, but asset picking. For example, it's easy to spot here when other people reuse assets from previous projects over the years without much variation in settings. This isn't because it's fun to use, but because a lot of people, who have even admitted, are still simply confused by much of Terragen that is not even thoroughly explained, or even provide examples on. So when something works, or look good, they save it to clip file or whatever to reuse. This is intended behavior, but I don't think it was intended to be so heavily dependent on other peoples clips. I think this trend is heavy, even outside Planetside, because of lack of resources to properly learn from.

This is why with some of my work I provide a disclaimer for education use. I try to make sure the node tree is straight forward and shader names explain any complex work being done, or add notes. The ultimate goal is that by being able to "read" out the tree, and what's happening, it will stick in peoples minds and provide them a "method" to do something without much experimentation or trial and error.

While I do have these concerns though, like I said, if I had the money, I would gladly support Terragen and purchase a copy. I advocate for something I don't even own because the power and potential in Terragen in my eye is "astronomical". I routinely come up with ideas to push Terragen, and while a lot are not even worth a share, some stuff I have discovered is pretty cool, even if I found it was attempted before. Sometimes I achieve better! Which I feel proud about.

That being said, I strongly feel this potential is being hidden or overlooked when a prospective customer reviews the software and what it has to offer them as far actually learning and using the software. The price tag next to the desert that is the Planetside "University" is disconcerting. I feel that a lower end-price (and lower maintenance) together with the support of the community support, there would be a large flux of trials and purchases, which would subsequently translate over to community engagement, tutorials, etc. Maybe a open tutorial campaign? Or private (membership based until complete) wiki project for select members to start building a comprehensive documentation on? I'd definitely volunteer in areas I feel I can appropriate add too. If need be I'll volunteer web development time to develop necessary secure features needed for a public Planetside wiki if need be.

Maybe for the next milestone there could be a promotional period of highly discounted creative licenses to get people engaged with Terragen. I'd love for my friends that were overwhelmed to come back. Especially when their work in other software puts my entire artistic endeavors to shame.

I feel I should note that my opinions about the price of Terragen are based on Non-Commercial copies, for I hope apparent reasons. In-fact, I feel the commercial license is relative cheap, especially in contrast to some of the software. Last I checked one of the commercial licenses for a engine I wanted was 1,400 USD (annually).
« Last Edit: July 25, 2018, 11:54:31 PM by WASasquatch »
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Offline Prometheus

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Re: High ongoing cost, relatively low "improvements".
« Reply #7 on: July 26, 2018, 08:00:42 AM »

The inherent structure of cloud generation in TG is based on a planet, much like geometry outside of Heightmaps. This makes cloud navigation impractical I'd imagine if I am thinking of what you're thinking like other software's meta clouds.

Also, I'm unsure what you mean by more traditional controls? Terragen seems to be using traditional directional oriented buttons for camera panning, tilting, angle, etc. Do you mean quick-access macros like mouse clicks and such? A lot of 3D software has dropped conventional, and traditional buttons for cameras for a long time in place of mouse manipulation.

The UI imo also shouldn't change. The worth of the program, in this field, is not defined by a flashy UI. The way it's designed is pretty straight forward in a defined grid frame layout with everything clearly labeled in text, if not a preview related button or basic file handling quick-access buttons. Lot of newer programs I don't even like to use because they use their UI as a form of artistic expression. Just use basic GUI frameworks. They're speedy and straightforward. :P



I disagree with a lot of what you say here..for these reasons.
No...vue has world global clouds which you can rotate..in Terragen you canīt ...at least not with easy clouds, maybe with some nodal work..but why making it so hard? so I am not talking about metaclouds in vue.

Besides..both vue and terragen offers radial or distance falloff for the global clouds to create a more hero clouds, the difference is that vue allows for rotation of such clouds and Terragen does not.
There was a volumetric plugin for lightwave called Ogo Taiki, could use full distance global clouds, and you simply entered lightwaveīs procedurals and rotated the clouds in any direction you wanted..fully planetary or smaller clouds with distance.

As for controls for cloud items, I am talking about simple y,x,z axis control values as well as being able to slide drag change the values..and these values should have corresponding marks of what axis it pertains, not as it is today with Terragen with no marks on what axis it pertains..leaving it up to the user to guess.

Same for camera, controls for y,x,z  simple navigation gizmo..as we have in vue and in lightwave, blender etc.

As for UI, you are just making excuses for the bad UI by refering to itīs greatness isnīt defined by flashy UI, ...if you make excuses like that, we will never see any improvments on it.
The UI simply Doesnīt look good and can be improved.

All these critical points aside..always have to mention that the quality and realism is outstanding for clouds.
If the developer listens to some of these UI desired enhancements..and do something about it..along with taking notes on the maintainance, then I think Terragen would take another boost in sales and market shareīs.

I do understand that Terragen developers may be shorthanded ..but if their gonna compete they need to adress that..and the proposed changes above.

Offline Marander

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Re: High ongoing cost, relatively low "improvements".
« Reply #8 on: July 26, 2018, 09:42:00 AM »
I agree to the sentiments of JWiede and Prometheus

The UI needs heavy rework* and the documentation** should be complete in a release 4 of the software. The fbx / obj import and export should be improved. Import of DAZ characters (including proper texture conversion) would be a great feature and could attract alot of new users.

*Having said that, another application that needs heavy UI rework / complete overhaul is in fact LightWave with its 1990 UI in 2018, LOL  :P. Talking of LightWave, Terragen only supports the LWO2 standard. LW 2018 uses the new format LWO3.

**The documentation is not that important for myself because I mostly learn with experimenting / self-learning. But for most and new users it's an important part of the software. For me one of the most important parts (beside its feature set and output quality of course) is the UI / UX and workflow.

Terragen can produce beautiful renders but it's not very artist friendly.

Currently I prefer using Vue (xStream because its integration in my host 3D applications, better import / export features and due to the nicer UI, terrain sculpting, eco systems and material editor) but Terragen has some nice features like enhancing imported height maps with it's own procedural displacements (in Vue you can only mix height maps and procedurals, not add its own fractals procedurally to it on the fly). Another thing I like in Terragen is the cloud shadow quality and lighting.

Note that I'm a hobbyist but I purchased Terragen Professional 4.1 a while ago (and overall I'm happy with Terragen).

If I will renew my maintanance depends much on what and how many new features will be available within this maintenance period.
« Last Edit: July 26, 2018, 10:24:23 AM by Marander »

Offline jwiede

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Re: High ongoing cost, relatively low "improvements".
« Reply #9 on: July 26, 2018, 05:08:59 PM »
Having problems replying to the thread, every time I press "Quote" to reply to a post, enter my reply, and either press "Post" or "Preview", either the forum kicks me to an (empty) "New Topic" form, or stops responding altogether. 

Anyone else encountering such issues?

Offline jwiede

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Re: High ongoing cost, relatively low "improvements".
« Reply #10 on: July 26, 2018, 05:12:29 PM »
(trying to use quoted reply in tiny segments instead...)

Also, I'm unsure what you mean by more traditional controls? Terragen seems to be using traditional directional oriented buttons for camera panning, tilting, angle, etc. Do you mean quick-access macros like mouse clicks and such? A lot of 3D software has dropped conventional, and traditional buttons for cameras for a long time in place of mouse manipulation.

Instead of (incorrectly) guessing what I meant, it probably would have made more sense to just ask.  I have as little interest in a "flashy UI" as you do.  I'm seeking more basic functionality.

Many of the UI issues I see stem from Terragen moving beyond being just strictly a procedural terrain engine, and into the realm of coordinating and integrating both procedurally-generated and externally-provided data sets and content.  Like it or not, when it comes to actions like constructing complex 2D and 3D masks/boundaries, including any sort of precision placement/location handling, being limited to a camera-focused perspective viewport becomes a serious impediment. 

Access to orthogonal multi-views, and easy means of setting/recalling 2D and 3D viewpoints (both by "flying navigation" and precise placement) makes working with large-scale "environmental datasets" vastly more efficient.  Likewise, in order to efficiently produce accurate boundaries and define regions for inclusive and exclusive applications of procedural operators (in both 2D and 3D), users need access to the same sorts of 2D and 3D regional selections, constraints/groupings, and transform/rotation operations as are needed in more "general-purpose" 3D applications, including options for precise absolute and relative definitions and dimensions.  Despite adding features which depend highly on these kinds of regional definitions and dimensions, Terragen's UI has evolved very, very little in terms of providing users with efficient means of creating and editing such regional definitions and dimensions.

(continued)


Offline WASasquatch

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Re: High ongoing cost, relatively low "improvements".
« Reply #11 on: July 26, 2018, 05:23:26 PM »
Having problems replying to the thread, every time I press "Quote" to reply to a post, enter my reply, and either press "Post" or "Preview", either the forum kicks me to an (empty) "New Topic" form, or stops responding altogether. 

Anyone else encountering such issues?

Yes.

As for controls for cloud items, I am talking about simple y,x,z axis control values as well as being able to slide drag change the values..and these values should have corresponding marks of what axis it pertains, not as it is today with Terragen with no marks on what axis it pertains..leaving it up to the user to guess.

Maybe I don't understand what you mean. In Terrgan clouds are made through noise, that noise is 3D, you can rotate anyway you want. The final result is a slice in the altitude defined by the cloud layer.

As for UI, you are just making excuses for the bad UI by refering to itīs greatness isnīt defined by flashy UI, ...if you make excuses like that, we will never see any improvments on it.
The UI simply Doesnīt look good and can be improved.

It's not an excuse. It's shared by most professional software outside the artistic realm where artistic liberties are taken with the GUI. The last thing a GUI needs to do is look nice. It should be function-able, and straight forward, like TG is. What is your actual complaint about the GUI? It's one of the most easy to understand software GUI's in the 3D rendering industry. If you need documentation for your UI, like a lot of software, you're failing UX, one of my main professions in development. It's the same concept in web development. If you need a site map for people to understand your layout, you failed UX. This, is failed, in almost every 3D software for a need to understand their software. Half the time everyone doesn't even use the GUIs because they're cluttered and slow and use macros. In fact I know no one that actually sits there using the UIs beyond value inputs and only use macros for Blender and Maya.

It's also fun to note that the learning curves with most professional software isn't actually manipulations of scenes, but the UI, and knowing where everything is through the clutter, and all the sub menus. It's in fact the biggest reason that hinders people picking up these software and learning it. The UI. Especially in the 3D competition where software layout becomes proprietary in nature and unique to their vision.
« Last Edit: July 26, 2018, 05:46:08 PM by WASasquatch »
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Offline WASasquatch

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Re: High ongoing cost, relatively low "improvements".
« Reply #12 on: July 26, 2018, 05:25:53 PM »
(trying to use quoted reply in tiny segments instead...)

Also, I'm unsure what you mean by more traditional controls? Terragen seems to be using traditional directional oriented buttons for camera panning, tilting, angle, etc. Do you mean quick-access macros like mouse clicks and such? A lot of 3D software has dropped conventional, and traditional buttons for cameras for a long time in place of mouse manipulation.

Instead of (incorrectly) guessing what I meant, it probably would have made more sense to just ask.  I have as little interest in a "flashy UI" as you do.  I'm seeking more basic functionality.

Many of the UI issues I see stem from Terragen moving beyond being just strictly a procedural terrain engine, and into the realm of coordinating and integrating both procedurally-generated and externally-provided data sets and content.  Like it or not, when it comes to actions like constructing complex 2D and 3D masks/boundaries, including any sort of precision placement/location handling, being limited to a camera-focused perspective viewport becomes a serious impediment. 

Access to orthogonal multi-views, and easy means of setting/recalling 2D and 3D viewpoints (both by "flying navigation" and precise placement) makes working with large-scale "environmental datasets" vastly more efficient.  Likewise, in order to efficiently produce accurate boundaries and define regions for inclusive and exclusive applications of procedural operators (in both 2D and 3D), users need access to the same sorts of 2D and 3D regional selections, constraints/groupings, and transform/rotation operations as are needed in more "general-purpose" 3D applications, including options for precise absolute and relative definitions and dimensions.  Despite adding features which depend highly on these kinds of regional definitions and dimensions, Terragen's UI has evolved very, very little in terms of providing users with efficient means of creating and editing such regional definitions and dimensions.

(continued)

And because of the inherent dynamic and procedural nature of the planet, maps, locations, heightmaps, etc, etc, etc, how do you expect that to practically work for everyones scenes, and why we can place cameras anywhere? Not everyones masks will be same dimensions, locations, same for heightmaps and such. Do you want every one of these shaders to be redone to carry their own cameras that dynamics adjust to scales?
« Last Edit: July 26, 2018, 05:29:00 PM by WASasquatch »
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Offline Prometheus

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Re: High ongoing cost, relatively low "improvements".
« Reply #13 on: July 26, 2018, 06:31:09 PM »
As for controls for cloud items, I am talking about simple y,x,z axis control values as well as being able to slide drag change the values..and these values should have corresponding marks of what axis it pertains, not as it is today with Terragen with no marks on what axis it pertains..leaving it up to the user to guess.

Maybe I don't understand what you mean. In Terrgan clouds are made through noise, that noise is 3D, you can rotate anyway you want. The final result is a slice in the altitude defined by the cloud layer.

As for UI, you are just making excuses for the bad UI by refering to itīs greatness isnīt defined by flashy UI, ...if you make excuses like that, we will never see any improvments on it.
The UI simply Doesnīt look good and can be improved.

It's not an excuse. It's shared by most professional software outside the artistic realm where artistic liberties are taken with the GUI. The last thing a GUI needs to do is look nice. It should be function-able, and straight forward, like TG is. What is your actual complaint about the GUI? It's one of the most easy to understand software GUI's in the 3D rendering industry. If you need documentation for your UI, like a lot of software, you're failing UX, one of my main professions in development. It's the same concept in web development. If you need a site map for people to understand your layout, you failed UX. This, is failed, in almost every 3D software for a need to understand their software. Half the time everyone doesn't even use the GUIs because they're cluttered and slow and use macros. In fact I know no one that actually sits there using the UIs beyond value inputs and only use macros for Blender and Maya.

It's also fun to note that the learning curves with most professional software isn't actually manipulations of scenes, but the UI, and knowing where everything is through the clutter, and all the sub menus. It's in fact the biggest reason that hinders people picking up these software and learning it. The UI. Especially in the 3D competition where software layout becomes proprietary in nature and unique to their vision.
[/quote]


No you do not understand what I mean, and No..there is no rotational control as I am aware of in terragen direct accesable controls where you have position controls and altitude controls.

With respect for your proffesion as UIX developer? I am not..I am a user and I am probably thinking quite differently..but I can tell you that I would pick the Vue line UI at any time over terragen, same with Lightwave3d, houdini etc, it could also be so that many UI designers at proffesion, isnīt the same user as more focused artists..thus they may fail to see the importance in certain UI aspects from that artists point of view.

The rotational controls you refer to?..where did you say that is available..I understand that you may be able to connect that within nodes, but that just shows how unfriendly the UI is when it comes to basic controls..it should be there next to position and altitude, but it isnīt.

And for more functional good UI, why o why doesnīt the position values have indicators of what axis it pertains in the value fields, Lightwave, vue has it..it is not good UI practice.
Colors do matter, for example..LIghtwave buttons VS modo buttons and text within that, If we exclude the discussion of icons vs text, both have text anyway..the text in modo is presented as black against slightly bluegrey, or orange and soft pastel green in some cases, where Lightwave has dark text against almost neutral grey, in my opinion that is not good, a slight hue variation make our eye distinguish text easier when it is darker text against a more hued grey nuance, that is why I prefer modo color scheme and not lightwave scheme, dark text against neutral lighter gray is more difficult to read.

And I really think you have a misperception of looks doesnīt mean anything for functionality..I assert that is wrong, look at how the rtp buttons is highlighted with slight blue on a dull grey background button..as I mentioned before, it can be hard sometimes to see if it is on or off, a clear darker background with a better ligh highlight would make that more clear to see.

As for another UI issue or greatness of Terragen functionality, you can not even copy and paste cloud layers, that you can do with vue, as well as in lightwave with certain plugins or itīs native layering system.

you can probably through an enquire, which UI is more functional attractive and easy to use, vue or terragen and look what the respons will be, I know there are some folks at newtek forums including the thread starter here, that agrees with me on the controls and UI.

Anyway..I hope I may be able to record some notes about this with Terragen and differences when you compare to vue or lightwave for instance, though Lightwave is not special dedicated as any of vue or terragen.

Apart from the obvious color scheme touch up for a more easier on the eye look, it Is the functionality that is lacking ..which you praise as it has functionality over Looks, when it really doesnīt shine in any apartment there, lack of copy and paste cloud layers, lack of controlling the cloud rotation directly, lack of indicating which value axis it pertains, lack of sliders for the values (having to enter numericly every time)  Lack of using commas which is easier to enter with numerical panel and most other software uses that.


https://www.youtube.com/user/PrometheusPhamarus/videos

« Last Edit: July 26, 2018, 06:45:23 PM by Prometheus »

Offline WASasquatch

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Re: High ongoing cost, relatively low "improvements".
« Reply #14 on: July 26, 2018, 06:55:13 PM »
My profession is specifically outlined by understanding the actual needs of the user beyond the bias in art, style, fashion, etc. The fundamentals. What you see with software like Vue is proprietary designs. They are in fact MEANT to make you favor them over another software. It just marketing, like Vue's rather large buttons with giant icons that plays Pictionary with you.

You're arguing against the UI of Windows when you argue with TG's UI, still in places in millions of applications, that no one actually complains about. You're just an artist, and as such, you have specific artistic tastes outside the average person. And again, it Terragen everything is very literally labeled and laid out in front of you. In fact you could very accurate compare TG's interface to professional CAD software, FLIR software, LIDAR software, etc, etc.

As for the clouds and such, I think you're misunderstanding Terragen's goal there. It's going for realistic Earth-type clouds, which follow certain laws. Using nodes to do something, which this software is almost entirely based on and the settings of each node, is not bad, or wrong, it's really inherent to TG's workflow when you get down to doing anything. Other software is in fact not "inherent" to Earth physics laws, and expect radical artistic expression from the get-go, and provide those tools in a easy method. Clouds in TG are primarily for filling out your scenes with procedural clouds. Cloud editing could be better, I am not arguing that, but with other software, the focus is on a artistic approach, not simulation.
« Last Edit: July 26, 2018, 06:59:45 PM by WASasquatch »
Art can be a window into the soul