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General => Terragen Discussion => Topic started by: cajomi on May 26, 2007, 03:47:31 am

Title: Waiting...................
Post by: cajomi on May 26, 2007, 03:47:31 am
I am waiting...........
and waiting...............

I had paided for a tech preview, expecting, that the software will be developed.
I can not see this at the moment. The small list of changes for the last update, a longer time ago, was absolutly not impressive.

Where are the improvements for the usability?
May be here are mostly TG fans, because I did not find much critic about the developement steps, but if you are not blind and look for example at the rero gallerie, you will find many users, that switch back to TG 0.9. That cannot be because it has more power. So, what do you think, what is the reason?
They have problems, because it is new, has changed, and users to not like such changes. They want, what they were used to. Hm, that is right. I have read this here in the forum, similar.
And so, it looks like the leader (Matt) is thinking, that it is only a question of documentation, and he has not to improve the usability.
Please tell me, if it is so.

Johannes Rosenberg
-cajomi-
developer of GeoControl
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: peejay on May 26, 2007, 04:25:46 am
Please see the thread titled 'Oshyan I have a nagging feeling..'

I too feel impatient, but Planetside have given many assurances that the full version of TG2 will be released this year. Granted that could mean December 31, but if that is what it is, then that is what it is.

I have seen too many software companies rush products into use before they were properly tested to start nagging Plantside to hurry up. ( I am talking about commercial business software as well, not just hobby software). It NEVER works properly, it ALWAYS causes chaos and sometimes misery. I work in the Civil Service in the UK, and I wish I was allowed to give you examples of the kind of problems that are caused  when software is rushed into use before it is ready. My own Department has been virtually crippled by damn near useless IT systems.

Please believe me when I say, late and right is far far better than early and wrong.

I want to be using TG2 (and maybe TG3 & 4) for a good while to come in the future, for me to be able to that, it has to succeed. If it is to succeed, it has to be a winner right off the bat. A flurry of early complaints and bug reports would kill the commercial viability of the project. I believe Planetside are right to be patient and to wait until they know they have got it right. I do not know what kind of problems they face, but I can already see a product which, though unfinished, knocks the spots off it's nearest competitors. That is enough to give me confidence that they will overcome whatever difficulties they face, and deliver what they have promised.

They have said 2007 is the year. I am willing to take them at their word. If come 2008, they have not delivered, that will be a different story, but until then my feeling is that we all back off a little. This kind of pressure from User groups forced Curious Labs into releasing Poser 5 too early a few years back, and it was a disaster.

Please do not make that happen with TG2?
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: cajomi on May 26, 2007, 05:11:11 am
Please, open your eyes. In 5 months one update.

And if you are talking about going to early into the market: The tech preview is in the market. And I am one of those, who do not believe in freeware. So I have given my money to ensure, that the developement will go on. And of course, I expected, that as a licence owner, I will take part at all updates, what means like a beta tester.
So, if this is the cycle of developement, one update in 5 months, that looks, like TG2 is a free time project.
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: ProjectX on May 26, 2007, 05:21:52 am
To be entirely honest with you I don't have many problems with the current tech preview. Absence of sub-surface scattering, and proper water are pretty much all that truly bug me. Oh, and the occasional crash on a highly-detailed scene, but since I work in an industry where repetitive saving is essential, it rarely affects me at all.

As for render times, I barely notice them, since I have a seperate computer used for rendering. What exactly are the problems you are having with it?

I agree that only one update in 5 months is not a great sign of progress, but you must remember that they wouldn't want to dump untested code on people who have paid for the privilege. It's a lose-lose situation. They test everything - and people complain - they release quickly - and people complain.
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: Harvey Birdman on May 26, 2007, 05:30:44 am
I too paid for a technology preview, and I feel I'm getting my money's worth. I went into this with my eyes open, with the understanding that this was not a complete product, and that substantial development remained.

I have had my doubts from early on that a final product would be released this year. When I look at all the features yet to be implemented/completed/debugged, I just don't see that happening. And I can live with that.

I am concerned that Planetside is setting themselves up for failure by insisting that a completed product will be released by a specific deadline. (Given their track record, it seems that more discipline has possibly been needed in terms of setting deadlines, but I wonder if there isn't too much rigidity about this particular date.) I would be pleased by more frequent updates, but I understand that this can slow the development process as a whole.

On the whole, I look at what I've already gotten vs. what I've paid, and I'm not too displeased. I hope for/expect more in the future, but I'm not going to freak out if 31 December rolls around and I don't have every bell and whistle working. I'd rather give the guys the time to get it RIGHT than pressure them into a premature release.
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: reck on May 26, 2007, 05:50:02 am
Hi Harvey,


Quote from: Harvey Birdman on May 26, 2007, 05:30:44 am
I have had my doubts from early on that a final product would be released this year. When I look at all the features yet to be implemented/completed/debugged, I just don't see that happening. And I can live with that.


Just read through your post. Is there a list somewhere that lists all the features that are going into Terragen2? I've never seen a list so I always assumed we would know what's in it when it gets released. So to me I can never understand when people say "oh I don't think Planetside are going to make their deadline and get Terragen out on time". Without an official list of features what's to stop Planetside from releasing at any point in time once the product has become more stable? At the minimum all they have to do is get the things working that are not at the moment, add multicore support, with maybe water transparency.

So to me I don't think people have to worry about Terragen2 coming out by the end of the year, it's just what exactly is going to be in that product at the end of the year.

Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: cajomi on May 26, 2007, 05:57:47 am
I am not missing features.
I am missing improvements in the usuage. Simply take a look at the developement in the terragen rero gallerie and you can see, that it is going down with TG. Many users swichted back to version TG 0.9 and the quality of the posted images was better before TG2. The reason for this can not be, that there are not enough features.

If basic functions like using an imported mask for shading need own tutorials, then the usability is very bad and must be improved. And of course, when you need a lot of action for such a simple task, how much time do you want to spend, before you get an image ready to render?
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: Harvey Birdman on May 26, 2007, 06:00:55 am
Reck - Good point. No, I don't have a list of features, I just seem to run into the 'oh, that feature will be implemented/debugged/improved later' quite a bit - translucency, smoothing, correct reflective surface behavior, etc, etc. I'm left with the feeling that there are probably a lot of others that haven't come up in coversation yet. The impression I'm left with is a lengthy list of non-trivial features. I have some small experience with software development and scheduling. I'm just saying that my personal experience, coupled with the impression I get regarding the state of product development and the complexity of the product, leaves me a little dubious as to 31 December 2007.

cajomi - I admit I've been tempted to revert to .9 for some skybox work.
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: DeathTwister on May 26, 2007, 10:34:01 am
Hay Cajomi, birdman, reck and the rest,

  Humm, first off this tg2 preview is free and why anyone would buy it before it is done is beyond me.  We have so much to learn in this program that it can make your head spin as it is, so getting more features before you have all the rest down is kinda well you know /winks.....

   I am betting the reason why allot of people have gone back to TG is because they do not have the skills to really work with a very hi end piece of software as let me tell you guys, this TGD2 separates the men from the boys and girls as it were and we all know it.
  Meaning most people cannot figure this stuff out, period dudes, so I can see why people have gone back to tg v09.  But only the dumb ones or the ones to impatient to learn or to wait for updates as we all know there are always workarounds for us, so I for one am never going to complain about tgd2 in any way shape or form and feel it a huge honor as they gave it to us as a freebie, WTG guys, so quit bitting the hand that is feeding us /smiles respectfully I say that /bows.  But is wasn't because they wanted more features but maybe some needed less to work this program, it is all relative at the end of the day aye Mates? I have at least 5 friends that went back to TG just because of that fact, not the other way around, they cannot get it, is all guys.  This is high end shit and we should all know it.

  TG is a very simple program and very easy to use, and I like the hard ones myself that make me think and expand my mind, maybe other don't like to think, but I do.
  I will buy the full version when it is done, not before as I see no point in it ATM, but when it is done? I will have it pure and simple.

  The only reason I use TG at all now is for little contests, making sky boxes, making textures for video game engines, and sometimes a bit of rocky textures to my L3DT terrains I make using Aaron's wonderful Terrain program, and you can find a free fun version at: http://www.bundysoft.com/L3DT/ (http://www.bundysoft.com/L3DT/) it is for making huge terrains up to I think 400-550 miles square, and has amazing control for the terrains, much more then terragen ever did.  But hand in hand, OMG WOW what a hoot working with the 2.

  Anyway give the dudes a chance they are working hard for us weather we see it or not and they full well know what is and what is not working right so chill, it will all be done, and maybe even by the end of the year.
  We waited for Constructor at garage games for what over 2 years and when they did release? it was free, and they are still working on it, and don't ya know? even when it is free people will bitch about stuff, so take that all into account when we have a feeling maybe it is time to complain.

WHAT 2 DO:  Make lots of bug reports and feature requests and leave it at that, maybe if they like your input enough, they may ask you to join the beta team, but if we complain? I bet we never see that lofty place at all /winks........

Personally I am having a gas with my free copy and cannot understand why anyone would want to complain about such awesome software.  Unless of course you have something better we can play with?  if not? you know the drill /bows.

  OK I said my piece have fun guys and check my renders on renderosity if you feel we are getting the shaft.  It's the artists stupid, not the software that creates the great works of artOnly those that cannot create will complain about everything about the tools they use, at least that is what I have found.  I hope none of you wonderful artist brothers fall into that category, as I am sure none of you do /winks.
I have been winning awards using this software so it can't be all bad /winks

Maylock  aka DeathTwister
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: cajomi on May 26, 2007, 02:07:36 pm
QuoteHumm, first off this tg2 preview is free and why anyone would buy it before it is done is beyond me.


Yes, there are much to lot terragen users thinking like you. Far to simple for you to understand, that money can help developĂ­ng, by given the developer more time. So buying can push the developement cycles. Hope you are not one of those stupid people that think, the less something costs, the better and most best is for free.

QuoteI am betting the reason why allot of people have gone back to TG is because they do not have the skills to really work with a very hi end piece of software as let me tell you guys, this TGD2 separates the men from the boys and girls as it were and we all know it.


QuoteIt's the artists stupid, not the software that creates the great works of art.  Only those that cannot create will complain about everything about the tools they use, at least that is what I have found.  I hope none of you wonderful artist brothers fall into that category, as I am sure none of you do /winks.


May be you take a look at the galleries of the artists, who used terragen 0.9,  those who got 20 and more comments or ratings for every render the posted at rero. There you will see, what an artist is able to you with a small feature list but a good usability. And when you get around 20 comments average for an render, you can yourself count to the artists.
After looking at your images, I have got the impression, that you think, you know how to use TG2.
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: Sethren on May 26, 2007, 06:15:29 pm
Personally i am taking a break from Terragen 2 because i feel that the UI is a bit over whelming at the moment. Trying to take what i do in GeoControl Alpha and place image masks and color overlays over the terrain still gives me alignment and size issues. Perhaps i am just brain dead just not seeing the obvious, i don't know.     ???      I guess i am just waiting for speed improvements (not enough time in the day and my PC overheats easily) and they will come.    ;D    Some type of easy way to create advanced shader materials with a preview window that had a shaded object to see what the material looks like. I want to able to plant a camera and move it around in the 3d preview window by just grabbing it with my mouse controls like in Vue or Carrara.

More thoughts...

Preview window with the option of seeing presets in 3D by terrain, flat plain, cylinder, box, triangle and sphere. ?

Needs a navigation window near the preview window to move the camera around freely with navigation like a trackball feature with roll, pitch, yaw, and a arrow navigation button with zoom, up and down.

Procedural Erosion: Fluvial, Glacial, Alluvial, Thermal, Wind, Talus Biuld up - Hard to achieve, i know.     :-[

Global River Network System - Hard to achieve.

Overhang/Displacement presets with a preview window seeing what they look like at a side view.

Displacements that can fake Tectonics. It is possible as i had done this in World Machine but not a real issue sense i can import heightfields anyways.

Global Mountain Ranges: Small clusters, Long chains, Range/Basin range and Shorter chains. Need a tutorial or some way to get this down.

Procedural Terrain Paint Brush: With 16bit image imports to shape the brush. Also would use procedurals to paint.  ?

Object Painter: Paint 3D Imported objects, Procedural Stones and Clouds.
Can work over a map in orthographic view and can be zoomed in and out to easily
see where the objects are being painted and a overall idea on what scale the user
wants the objects painted on.
Objects can be limited by Elevation, Slope, Mask, Amount, Scattering Size, Overall
Size per object selected.         I WISH!

Soft Shadows.

Island Generator: Clusters, Size, Scatter, Chains etc. Wild Idea!

Presets for Stones like Boulders, Smaller Rocks, Beach Pebbels, River Bed 
Pebbels, Flaky Stones, Lava Rocks, Rigid Stones, Cracked Stones and Smooth     
with some kind of stone shaper editor in a preview window.


Water Shader: Full transparency: Being worked on.
                    Fresnel: ?
                    Foam, Spray and Cresting Waves: The foam we know is possible via TG09
                    Caustics: ?

Global Lake Shader: May just correspond to the River Network System as rivers fill into lakes and also drain into the ocean. Wild Idea!

Improved Crater Shader: Planetary scale, Ejecta size, Overall size, Scattering, Jittering size and     
                                  Scatter, Depth, Height.

Waterfalls: Mentioned in the FAQ.

Additional Fractal Shaders: Like Chipped Slate, Unique Dune Patterns...

Atmosphere:
Global Weather System types: Presets, Global Cloud Coverage, Hurricane addition with storm 
                                              strength settings (See LunarCell) Tropical Storm addition (See 
                                              LunarCell), Jet Stream addition, Weather systems can be set up by 
                                              use of a flat map representing the planet and drawn by use of 
                                              splines representing global wind patterns in straight direction and
                                              drawn circles representing rotating storm systems: circles can be
                                              moved about the map, multiplied, scattered and resized.
                                              It's like using vector drawing to set up 
                                              weather patterns: I talked to Matt about this back in 2004 i
                                              think and nvseal has got something real nice going with this.

Rainbows: ?
Sun Dogs: ?
Halos: ?

Lighting:
Add new light types: Spot Light, Light Gel, Area Light, Local Volumetric Light, Make object into Light.
Simple Lens Flair System: Nothing over the top like Knoll Light Factory.
Sun: Aura, Color Ramp, Solar Flairs (See Flaming Pear Filter: SolarCell)

Clouds:
Presets representing all of the cloud types known: ?
Cirrus needs to be worked on to look more like the real thing: ?
Cumulonimbus: Needs thunderheads with flattening on tops that turns to Cirrus: Possible with
                     collision detection at a certain altitude.  Wild Idea!

Camera:
           Spherical
           Isometric
           Wide Angle
           Macro
           Orthographic
           Panoramic

Well, this turned into a wish list i guess. I'll shut up now.       ::)      ;D



Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: old_blaggard on May 26, 2007, 06:21:28 pm
Quote from: Sethren on May 26, 2007, 06:15:29 pm
Personally i am taking a break from Terragen 2 because i feel that the UI is a bit over whelming at the moment.

Um... and you think it won't be overwhelming with all of those extra features :P?
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: Sethren on May 26, 2007, 06:35:49 pm
Of course it would be. Most of this stuff won't make it in TG2 i would imagine and other factors apply like technically how hard is some of this is to program and it's up to the developers to decide what goes in and what is not currently possible. Just my random thoughts out of control.     ;D   

I know the UI will be cleaned up in the end to a certain degree.     :)

Also there can be more added as long as the UI is done in a intelligent manner like having Drop-down menus, Scroll-down menus and Pop-Up Windows. I am sure there are other ways as well.
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: Will on May 26, 2007, 08:24:30 pm
I'm coming in a bit late to this disscusion but I would like to give my two cents. Yes the UI right now is not very user friendly but it has to be understood that Tereragen 2 is currently in its alpha state, this isn't even beta testing. We will get what we wnat in time to come it you would like an alternitive to terragen I recomend Vue. Its can't do planets and its not as powerful (in my opinion) but its much more user friendly and it might be what you are looking for.

Regards,

Will
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: bvcastilho on May 26, 2007, 08:25:37 pm
Hi all,

Not entering in the update time line matter I'm writing because I
agree with those who think the usability of TG2 is where it needs
most work on....

TG2 is very powerful and when you get used to the nodes network
you fell the improvement it is, but...

TG1 is much more user friendly. No questions about.

Things I miss in TG2:
- Better camera location/position panel. We move the camera but are never sure
from where to where. And is very difficult to come back to a previous position.
I would like to see were my camera is pointing to and have some easy way to come back.
- Same thing for the terrain browser. It is very small and is difficult to choose a good
location to render. In TG1 of course just uses height fields but at least you see what
you want to see.
- Water control of course, but it is planned to improve.
- The sun positioner in TG1 is much more intuitive. Now you must move the sun and render to
see if it is is the correct place.
- With the current render rate is very difficult to have a proper preview of the scene.
Sometimes (especially in atmospheres) you see something in the fast low quality
render and what you get after 11hs render on the full is different.

there is more but I dont want to bore you all.

cheers.
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: Sethren on May 26, 2007, 08:36:49 pm
Quote from: Will on May 26, 2007, 08:24:30 pm
I'm coming in a bit late to this disscusion but I would like to give my two cents. Yes the UI right now is not very user friendly but it has to be understood that Tereragen 2 is currently in its alpha state, this isn't even beta testing. We will get what we wnat in time to come it you would like an alternitive to terragen I recomend Vue. Its can't do planets and its not as powerful (in my opinion) but its much more user friendly and it might be what you are looking for.

Regards,

Will


Right! That i understand.       ;D     Using Vue 6, don't really like it. Crashes ALOT!, buggy overall, very slow outdated renderer, displacement is a serious memory hog, skies are not nearly as nice as Terragen 2s as we all know.  What i do like is the lights, object placement, eco-system painting, material nodes, plant-editor, camera navigation and the nice preview window in the right.

I still think TG2 is still more powerful then Vue 6 in terms of it's renderer, lighting, atmosphere, clouds, planet-based procedural terrains, good on memory instancing overall and nodal system.

For kicks i did something like a planet in Vue but what i did is raise the camera outside the sky dome out into space. Kind if a nifty effect but still not a planet.      ;D

http://img152.imageshack.us/img152/656/entireplanet3rz2.jpg
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: DeathTwister on May 26, 2007, 11:43:28 pm
Hay all again,

All those posts above are awesome guys and yes yes we need all those features worked on, and I have my list as well, that is part of the fun of Beta/Alpha's we get to put our 2 cents in /smiles....Very good points made by Will, bvcastilho, Sethren, old_blaggard, ProjectX, Harvey Birdman, and peejay and reck.  You all have very right on thoughts on this all, well done my brothers and good ideas to get to Planetside I think, yes yes lots of thoughtful ideas in the wind.

  Yep yep you guys are all right on the issues, I was just trying to say that the free preview is awesome and they are working on stuff asap.  My comments were more to Brother Cajomi (/hugs) and his frustration with his full version. hahah was not trying to get a shooting gallery going hahahahaha /winks.

QuoteYes, there are much to lot terragen users thinking like you. Far to simple for you to understand, that money can help developing, by given the developer more time. So buying can push the development cycles. Hope you are not one of those stupid people that think, the less something costs, the better and most best is for free.


Actually while I could buy the full version right now, by the time it is done I would rather buy it because as far as I know right now, the only feature a full version has over the free one is the animation area, or am I wrong about that?  I do plan to buy the full version when it is just about done.  In the mean time we all have allot to learn and every day is a great learning experience for me anyway, and I love it.  Hahaha hay brother Cajomi I have a IQ of over 200 so I am pretty sure I can figure this all out hahaha ROTFL /winks and gives Cajomi a huge hug..../smiles.  But this program ain't that simple as we all know hahahaha. Opps was not trying to tut horns, just wanted you to know none of us here are smart enough to understand.  You must have had a very bad week or something /smiles, have a drink or smoke a doobie and relax it is vacation time for a few days /smiles.

QuoteQuote
I am betting the reason why allot of people have gone back to TG is because they do not have the skills to really work with a very hi end piece of software as let me tell you guys, this TGD2 separates the men from the boys and girls as it were and we all know it.

Quote
It's the artists stupid, not the software that creates the great works of art.  Only those that cannot create will complain about everything about the tools they use, at least that is what I have found.  I hope none of you wonderful artist brothers fall into that category, as I am sure none of you do /winks.

May be you take a look at the galleries of the artists, who used terragen 0.9,  those who got 20 and more comments or ratings for every render the posted at rero. There you will see, what an artist is able to you with a small feature list but a good usability. And when you get around 20 comments average for an render, you can yourself count to the artists.


I Was joking about the Crack, "it's the artists stupid" part, I thought you would laugh at that, not get upset, looks like most people understood I was not trying to bash anyone, but make an old art quot about art in general was all.  Sorry if any misunderstood that faze.  as for how many people post on my stuff? maybe not 20 all the time but I get my share, and I have allot of friends, so I am good and I do win awards for my craft here and there I think like 12 awards for various software packages in the last 6 months or so, so no biggie and I was not trying to compete with you or anyone, I was just saying we all are doing OK in learning the software.

  I just hate to see people bitch about something that is free and they are trying to share with us artists is all my brother.  Sorry you are having a bad experience with the full version Cajomi, maybe you should have done like the rest or most of us and are learning the free version while we wait for them to get all the goodies in the final version aye? /winks much better then getting upset I would think, don't you?


QuoteAfter looking at your images, I have got the impression, that you think, you know how to use
TG2.

Hahahaha no I never said that, in fact my last post of art I posted said I had been having trouble and found some tuts on fake rock shaders that has helped me allot actually so no I am not a master at tgd2 yet, but I will be one day soon, and I do not think one of us here are? do you?  As I said I am not trying to pump myself, but was just using examples of people doing OK with this.  Actually this I think is the first post I have seen when someone was bashing the tgd2 people for not having shit together, when in fact I think they are very together and support them in any way I can. We make our bug reports or want features and let it be, we find workarounds until they have it done, then relearn it if we have to, no biggie, welcome to bleeding edge alpha, and beta testing of software, I love it.  I use XSI, Blender, photoshop, Bryce, to Max, to L3DT, to many other programs I have learned over the years as well as work in the Ogre Engine and Garage games engines both TGE and TGEA, so while I do work on the cheep? I happen to be a poor disabled artist trying to get ahead in life by using tools one can afford when I can, just like the rest of us here I am betting. It is getting to where the good programs are free now for us artists, or very cheep, which I like, and why should good software be expensive anyway?

  It must be nice to be able to go out and buy what ever you want or need brother, but not all of us can do that, and that does not make us stupid, or lame, just poor independents in art is all. Actually it makes us very smart to find tools we can afford that are as good as the hi end expensive ones that cost thousands of bucks, and video game engines that can cost a million per seat, so maybe you just bought tgd2 a bit early?  It will catch up to your needs soon, we hope by the end of the year, but for me? that is not so important as what they do do and how well they do make the product that gets my money in the end.

One last question Cajomi? I would like to see some of your awesome work as I am thinking we all would, as it sounds like your way better then any of us, so lets send us a link or 2 for us? to go check out some of your magical art work, I want to see it /smiles.... It must be awesome they way you are talking, OMG I can't wait to see your wonders /drools. I love learnin from people better then me, that is how I or anybody gets better at there craft, so anti up my man and show us your magic /smiles please.

DeathTwister
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: cajomi on May 27, 2007, 12:57:42 am
Hi Deathtwister,

would it not be sensful to use your intelligence to get informations about me?
And how about getting adult?

QuoteAll those posts above are awesome guys and yes yes we need all those features worked on, and I have my list as well, that is part of the fun of Beta/Alpha's we get to put our 2 cents in /smiles....Very good points made by Will, bvcastilho, Sethren, old_blaggard, ProjectX, Harvey Birdman, and peejay and reck.  You all have very right on thoughts on this all, well done my brothers and good ideas to get to Planetside I think, yes yes lots of thoughtful ideas in the wind.

You should be careful when walking else you may slip.

Mostly we need no new features, but to get the actual features work and a GUI which allows a fast workflow.
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: Sethren on May 27, 2007, 02:30:01 am
Additional features can always come later, personally i have no issues with this. I was just sharing my thoughts of what could be in the future but yes, the GUI and current feature fixes should come first of course before gobs of additional add-ons but rest assured we all know these things will be fixed and optimized for final release time but as to how well the work flow will be is purely guesswork at this point. So we shall see i suppose. I can't imagine Matt jipping us with a crap software. Honestly each developer has there own pace to which they write and fix software code, some are just faster then others as each circumstance is unique. I can't begin to understand software coding but i do know there are hiccups along the way and sometimes even breaks are needed from long nights of writing code.     ;D

I can say this for sure that the work flow could not be any worse then Blender. Some get it and others say "What the frack?".
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: Cyber-Angel on May 27, 2007, 03:36:01 am
Um mm here we go...again

What we have here it seems to me is yet another charge of the "Lets bash good folks, while they are venerable" brigade which is starting to get real old real quick. To be honest I think that up to know Planetside have done a bang up job with putting together TG2, yes it needs refining but at least its accessible to the community now is that really such a bad thing?

Once again it seems to be the case that perceived inaction should be reason enough to scream loudly enough until it gets you what you want. Well this was seen in evidence last year at the end of January when our now beloved Tech Preview was delayed, and there was endless mouths on the Yahoo Terragen Group of general bitching, moaning people been told to shut up and so on which only ended with the release of the Tech Preview that was the beginning and end of the "First Great Terragen Flame War AKA the TG2TP Troll War" I really hope that this not the beginning of the next one?

Apparent Slowness between updates is a good thing in my book as it means that that developers are making those updates worth while and are not in a mad panic like some other larger software vendors seem to be.

TG2 is software not an intelligence test but more than that it is meant to be fun. TG2 is like fine food not some frozen stuff you have done in five minutes in the microwave oven; we may live in a world of fast paced instant gratification, but some things like TG2 do not work that way and require time, Patience and persistence in order to master there full potential.

___________________

Beget not the world of men, whose charms would beguile and draw you forth, A myriad ways to entice the soul and forget your responsibilities to your fellow men.
O torrid age of wow and strife of rushed meetings and not enough time,
Even to say good buy is often now a brief parting glance farewell, O how
Indignant we have become.

In our rushed lives when indeed did we last stand and stop to look,
at a rose covered by early morning dew, or at grass blown by the wind or many
of the simple things of life for the here and now just pass us by?

When last did you stop and talk a while to a fellow countrymen, or yet-
A stranger and some distant land afar?
I would say not often enough do we mind to care of the world around or within,
Not often enough do we share what's on our minds, lest it be for ill.

Regards to you.

Cyber-Angel
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: Will on May 27, 2007, 07:50:00 am
Cajomi I'm going to bite the bullet and say it. Honestly since you have paid your money there isn't much more you can do to push the dev cycle. All we can have is faith also, like Oshyan said, this is going to be the big year for Planetside and if they miss there 2007 release date then they don't blaim you for leaving. I really wish I could give you a more pleasing awnser but I can't. All the advice I can give is to have faith the Planetside will come though.

Regards,

Will
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: DeathTwister on May 27, 2007, 08:41:26 am
Haha pretty much what Cyber-Angel and Will and Sethren said goes with me. /smiles...and I loved the poem Cyber, great touch and very well said.
DT
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: DeathTwister on May 27, 2007, 09:07:01 am
Sorry all I just could not resist,

Hay Cajomi,

I went to Geo-Control website and found some of your art.  What I saw was pretty nice work, So I take it your on the team at Geo-Control?  Humm, I saw your stuff and it is nice I give you that, but I didn't see anything but landscapes and that was a bummer as I thought you were a master artist and created more then just landscapes for some reason, maybe it was the way you talked, I dunno, but when using Carrara I would have at least added a spaceship or 2 or some buildings you designed? something more then what I saw for all your wonderful input /winks, or do you know how to model? Hahaha (just kidding)  I would have thought you could at least do that the way you talk.

  Anyway lots of my friends on that site so I am a bit surprised you giving tgd2 such a hard tome, or is it because you guys are in direct competition with Planetside and you trying to figure out what they are doing before you guys release Geo-Control 2?  I use L3DT myself and while I have Geo-Control, I prefer to use L3DT allot like my brother Monks does most times, but this is good info to have about you /winks.
  Any more links to some Art that has more then landscapes in it? what I saw was pretty skimpy to me.  I actually really would like to see more of your work besides what is at GC.  And I could not find any.  anyway nice Tg stuff that you did but I would like to see more of your real masterpieces if we may? you must have some really good stuff stashed somewhere /winks.  Just give us all a link and no games about finding you hahahahahahaha, or was that all you had? I find that hard to believe.

I also noticed that you had NO tgd2 stuff anyware that I could find, What up with that? just tg v09 and Carrara, which is nice, but............
Sure would like to see more of your work and I am sure we all would here on this post to see your craft, really /smiles.
  What other apps you work in? Max? XSI? LW? what? besides terra forming software and Carrara?

check out: http://designpaths.com (http://designpaths.com)  Melting Ice is a cool dude and great site if anyone has not been there yet.

Cajomi Links now
Cajomi Links now
Cajomi Links now
Cajomi Links now
show us your magic more my brother....

anyway other then checking out your other links (When I find them) I am done with this post I think /smiles and hope ya'll have a good memorial day if you live in the US, the rest? just have a hell of a good time /smiles......

DeathTwisters Alley
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: Buzzzzz on May 27, 2007, 09:19:08 am
@ DeathTwister- You said: Actually while I could buy the full version right now, by the time it is done I would rather buy it because as far as I know right now, the only feature a full version has over the free one is the animation area, or am I wrong about that?

The Hundred Bucks I spent for the Deep Version got me, larger than 800x600 renders, more than 3 populations and the right to sell my creations for profit. But most importantly the full version and all updates when they become available.

Also want to add that it's hard to tell if one is getting proficient with TG2 at this time with all it's inconsistencies. Although it is fun to play with.  Death- would you please give us the Links to all your Awards as I would love to see them, Please.

@ cajomi- I agree, I would also like to see things move along a little faster, however "Impatience" is one of my many "Defects of Character".  ;) I mean, how much frustration do you expect for $100 or $200 bucks?  ;)

Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: DeathTwister on May 27, 2007, 09:44:06 am
Hay Buzzzzz,

  Hay brother, how u know I have awards /smiles???/winks

OK for a few so far, I have awards on http://designpaths.com/ (http://designpaths.com/)
also have won some at: http://www.bundysoft.com/L3DT/ (http://www.bundysoft.com/L3DT/) in the award section, that not to big a deal really other then image of the year last year.
Also I have been winning awards on http://eyefetch.com (http://eyefetch.com) and my user name there is Maylock like my real name hahahaha. I think you have to register to get in but my last win of first place is let me see...
if I can find it easy...http://www.eyefetch.com/image.aspx?ID=286042 (http://www.eyefetch.com/image.aspx?ID=286042) for my space station design "Good Hope" I created it in 3D max by the way.  Some of the art that I have been doing that been going into tgd2? was created in XSI SoftImage.  But I have won now 5 awards on eyefetch so find my main page at: http://www.eyefetch.com/profile.aspx?user=Maylock (http://www.eyefetch.com/profile.aspx?user=Maylock) That is my main page there.  I am missing one or 2, but I win allot of awards and get lost sometimes trying to remember them all.  My company does though, so I normally do not worry about it /chuckles....

As for the buying the full version your right of course, just have not had the duckets to spend right now until we get our first virtual world out and on the internet in the next few weeks we hope.  But we are a 2 man team, so it can be slow at times, one programmer, one artist, wearing 10 hats a piece as you know it has to be that way if we are to get there.  And it would be nice to pump that anti-aliesing up some besides the painting sizes, but your right.  The point was more about having a calm attitude about it was more my thought, but I really am enjoying this FREE preview and it's OK ATM that I have the free version.  But I plan to buy it soon, just finishing other stuff that our company needs to buy first, like good Photogrametry software with a good SDK and so on.  Then I get my toys after my programmer gets his needs met on this next round of software buying /winks.  Hay thanks for the info by the way on all the extra goodies we get /smiles....No I did not know we get the extra populations also, KEWL /smiles....

And I do agree it would be nicer to get updates faster, but I have found that when you bitch or complain in this industry, it gets you no where but ire of other people for making cracks about software that is in Dev. hahahahahaha I think it is called bitting the hand that feeds you.

By the way good to see ya again my brother and how have you been these days?  haven't seen many posts by you latley so you must be doing great /winks

PS: Time to go get my first cup of Java, need it bad /yawns...

DeathTwister
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: Buzzzzz on May 27, 2007, 11:00:40 am
Hay Buzzzzz, Back at Ya,

  Hay brother, how u know I have awards /smiles???/winks Because I thought you said so in this Thread? Maybe I'm seeing things?

OK for a few so far, I have awards on http://designpaths.com/
also have won some at: http://www.bundysoft.com/L3DT/ in the award section, that not to big a deal really other then image of the year last year.
Also I have been winning awards on http://eyefetch.com and my user name there is Maylock like my real name hahahaha. I think you have to register to get in but my last win of first place is let me see...
if I can find it easy...http://www.eyefetch.com/image.aspx?ID=286042 for my space station design "Good Hope" I created it in 3D max by the way.  Some of the art that I have been doing that been going into tgd2? was created in XSI SoftImage.  But I have won now 5 awards on eyefetch so find my main page at: http://www.eyefetch.com/profile.aspx?user=Maylock That is my main page there.  I am missing one or 2, but I win allot of awards and get lost sometimes trying to remember them all.  My company does though, so I normally do not worry about it /chuckles....   Thanks for the Links, I really like the Space Station one.

As for the buying the full version your right of course, just have not had the duckets to spend right now until we get our first virtual world out and on the internet in the next few weeks we hope.  But we are a 2 man team, so it can be slow at times, one programmer, one artist, wearing 10 hats a piece as you know it has to be that way if we are to get there.  And it would be nice to pump that anti-aliesing up some besides the painting sizes, but your right.  The point was more about having a calm attitude about it was more my thought, but I really am enjoying this FREE preview and it's OK ATM that I have the free version.  But I plan to buy it soon, just finishing other stuff that our company needs to buy first, like good Photogrametry software with a good SDK and so on.  Then I get my toys after my programmer gets his needs met on this next round of software buying /winks.  Hay thanks for the info by the way on all the extra goodies we get /smiles....No I did not know we get the extra populations also, KEWL /smiles....No problem, thought it was common knowledge? Sounds like you are a busy, busy man with all you dabble in. Wish I had that much ambition.  ;)

And I do agree it would be nicer to get updates faster, but I have found that when you bitch or complain in this industry, it gets you no where but ire of other people for making cracks about software that is in Dev. hahahahahaha I think it is called bitting the hand that feeds you. I don't know if I would call it bitching or cracks? I do know if you want something you need to ask for it most times, because people aren't mind readers.

By the way good to see ya again my brother and how have you been these days?  haven't seen many posts by you latley so you must be doing great /winks  As happy as a Puppy with Seven Peckers!  :D  No I 'd don't post as much as I use to, however I do post at DA http://buzzzzz.deviantart.com/ (http://buzzzzz.deviantart.com/)and my site http://buzzzzzart.com/ (http://buzzzzzart.com/) Probably won't impress you much for there's only nature landscapes and no Modeling really involved. Simply because I enjoy trying to recreate what God has created and not Man. Not a slam be any means, just my preference.

PS: Time to go get my first cup of Java, need it bad /yawns... On my 5th Cup here so no problem being AWAKE!  ;)

DeathTwister
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: DeathTwister on May 27, 2007, 12:52:35 pm
Hahahahahaha, /winks.

/smiles...
QuoteBecause I thought you said so in this Thread? Maybe I'm seeing things?

HAha I was just being funny bro /winks.  I guess it was to early for me to Joke hahaha, now I have 3 cups in me, I thinking a tast faster haha.

QuoteThanks for the Links, I really like the Space Station one.


Thank you very much brother. Yes I actually won first place for both Wayfarer and Good Hope Space stations in the same week, just different websites.  Kinda cool and it tells me alot of people want off planet these days hahaha.

QuoteNo problem, thought it was common knowledge? Sounds like you are a busy, busy man with all you dabble in. Wish I had that much ambition.


yes, but that means I miss stuff here and there at times and is hard to stay up on all the things one needs to do to keep pace with eryone else hahaha.  But as a Sag, and a multi-level thinker/creator I do have my fingures in many pies at once hahaha. I would have more posts on my art, if I had and took the time to go and coment more on other peoples art, which I have been trying to do as there are so many very good artists out there in the world right now, more artists then I think in Human history then has ever been before, but hay who cares about the artists aye? /smiles and laughs......

QuoteAs happy as a Puppy with Seven Peckers!  Cheesy  No I 'd don't post as much as I use to, however I do post at DA http://buzzzzz.deviantart.com/and my site http://buzzzzzart.com/ Probably won't impress you much for there's only nature landscapes and no Modeling really involved. Simply because I enjoy trying to recreate what God has created and not Man. Not a slam be any means, just my preference.


Haha last first none taken my brother /winks and bows....I didn't mean to imply that if you didn't model mesh that you are not one killer artist by any means. So no slam by any means to anyone here or anywhere else. /bows....

WOO HOO glad to see you doing good brother, was wondering what happened to you. I will go see ya there on deviant and I am there as well, but hardly go there as I am so busy most times, but I have gotten really into tgd2 and think it is the wave of the future in many ways for artists and mesh builders.

Long time ago I started off by being a 2D artist who won awards here in California, but then I got disabled with Back and ankle injuries and painting started to really hurt my back bigtime with the mussles you use with a brush, so I went 3D after I layed around feeling sorry for myself for over 3 years, and then I woke up, got into Max, and photoshop, I have and been jamming ever since /smiles.....I have a moto I use every day, it is simply, there is no I can't in the ATOMIX Dictionary, just anything but that, I do not want to, I have not learned yet, I am working on it, and so on, but no I can't ever again.  There is always a solution if you look hard enough I feel. /winks.

QuoteOn my 5th Cup here so no problem being AWAKE!

Ouch I can't drink that much, it will kill my Kidnies : (. 3 is more then I should drink, but dang do I love a freshly ground pot of Java /winks....Mmmm I smell it now hahaha.

OK have fun guys I have to do my "Universal life church of the Open Mind" Sermun at the Beach in the bit, so I am mountain biking there to give it and a walk in the forest with people after words, so you all have fun, and remember to be good to each other when posible...../smirks & /winks yup yup I am Rev. maylock locally here hahahaha.  Need to get married? come to Calif. I will give free ones if you play in 3D hahahaha, in the redwood forests.  Now that I have taken this post totally off topic I am getting off before someone shoots me ROTFL, hay all have a good one.

DeathTwister
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: cajomi on May 27, 2007, 01:16:54 pm
Hi Deathwister,

looks like you are a bit slow in understanding:
I do not post my critic to the TG2 developement as artist, but as developer. To get GeoControl fitting to the upcoming release of TG2, I need a usable version.
I code normally 10-12 hours a day, and so I have not much time to play around with TG2. But it would be really nice, to have a version, with the simplest features implemented for easy use. That is what I am missing and that means for me, that I will have to make an update, after TG2 was released.
At time I am developing the river and lake tool, and it would be nice to see the result in TG2, but this version is to time intensive.

As developer a good usability is for me a very important part of the software. So of course, GC is nothing for you, you can not say, your are a man, because you can use it. The results will only show if you are an landscape artists. That is the reason, why even my alphas are easy to use. Only if it is easy to use, the testers are really able to work with it, and so to get results, where it is clear to see, what must be improved. If one user says, it is not easy to use, his problem, but if it is at least nearly the half of the community that switch back to old version or simply stop producing anything, then a developer really should wake up.

It is pitty, that you use discussions about softeware, to push yourself in the foreground. And it looks, like you are wishing, that TG2 will stay bad usable, because you then can get the feeling, your are more than others, because you use it. It looks, like all your talking is not about the content but about yourself and how great you are. Hope, you will find some day enough selfconfidence to simply take part and say your opinion without provocations, without saying how great you are, or how great and small others are, without this hahas and with really interest.

I am sure, I am not the only one, who misses informations about the developement, updates of the tech preview (it must not be the final release) and improved usabiltiy. But guys like you make many of them keep quiet, mostly if they are not sure, whether it is their problem, because they are a bit stupid, or whether TG2 is really bad to use. And if they read this thread, they make think, that they are right not to say it here.
To say it now clear: TG2 is not so difficult to use, because of its unbelievable power, but because the developer Matt has not spend enough time in creating a good and understandable workflow. That is a real hard critic to a software. But the success of TG 0.9 was based on the ease of use in combination with the incredible realism of the renders.
Matt said, that the first tech preview will not be easy to use, because of the node interface. That is not correct. That are not the nodes, nodes can be very usable. The problem is another. The logic is to far away from any conventions, the naming is not clear. Some functions should be separated and optimized.
At all, as developer I would say, such improvements can be done in four weeks for the complete Gui (full time developer) and would make TG 2 usable for the greatest part of the community. And I am missing exact such an update.
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: EdBardet on May 27, 2007, 01:52:57 pm
I too have paid and am frustrated. The tech preview disappointed me in that the Sculpting tools available in the earlier versions are basically ignored. I don't use it for scenery, I want it for site specific topography. At this time I am still getting my non TG modeling done, but soon I will have to start on the TG work and if things continue, I'll just have to drop back to an earlier version. Some correspondense has assured me the sculpting tools will be better than earlier---------------------BUT
Knotian
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: Will on May 27, 2007, 02:40:28 pm
Hi knotian, hey might be a good alternitive: http://www.daylongraphics.com/products/leveller/

Regards,

Will
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: moodflow on May 27, 2007, 06:16:13 pm
What TG2 has is amazing POTENTIAL.  Honestly, it has the chance of being the most amazing landscape generating apps ever.  I believe this is the frustrating part for all of us, since the bugs and lack of some key features are holding us back from making the breath-taking artwork this app is capable of generating. 

Granted, we were told from the beginning this is a tech preview, and accepted this.  However, most of us were not expecting to wait THIS long for some key features (or atleast bug fixes) to be implemented.

With this in mind, I think the best thing Planetside should do RIGHT NOW, is to start releasing smaller incremental updates/patches as created, instead of waiting to finish one big one.  People want to work RIGHT NOW with the most effective version, especially the paying ones like myself.   The odds are high they have already fixed alot of the issues that plague the current version of TG2.  If this is true, they should realease them, even if it pushes back the release date.   Releasing tiny updates or patches frequently would keep our morale up.  We'd know progress is being made, and TG2 IS on the way, if even its taking alot of time.

As such, we can only speculate as to what is going on behind the scenes:  Maybe there is a huge unsurmountable problem Planetside can't overcome in the code?  Maybe they are short on staff?  Maybe there is lack of funding?  Maybe Planetside's moral is a bit low.  If so, guys, this application is amazing!  Keep up the great work! 
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: DeathTwister on May 27, 2007, 07:11:22 pm
First off before I forget, right on Moodflow brother I agree, now lets get this post to matt so he can check this all out /smiles.

Brother Cojami,

  I am not going to keep this going as I have way to much to do, but I saw some stuff you posted so decided to respond. First off I never disagreed with you about wanting stuff done, I as well would dearly love to see this all done ands looking and working great. It was the way you made your post that got me going. Having said that.......

Quotelooks like you are a bit slow in understanding:
I do not post my critic to the TG2 development as artist, but as developer. To get GeoControl fitting to the upcoming release of TG2, I need a usable version.
I code normally 10-12 hours a day, and so I have not much time to play around with TG2. But it would be really nice, to have a version, with the simplest features implemented for easy use. That is what I am missing and that means for me, that I will have to make an update, after TG2 was released.
At time I am developing the river and lake tool, and it would be nice to see the result in TG2, but this version is to time intensive.


Wow if you had just brought your concerns like you just did without the Arian attitude the first time, this would never have happened. Minus the put down crap, you could go far oh grasshopper.
  I kinda figured you were either trying to get people ready for GC2 and have them come over the way you were talking or was trying to make desention among us, or like me sometimes we just get off on the wrong foot, and never stop until our feet are all the way in our mouth.
  Actually how can you code well if you never take the time to play my good man? that is part of beta testing, maybe you should spend more time creating art.  Work 10-12 hours on coding, another 4 on art.   So since you cannot get the code updated until they do finish, why stress and complain?  Don't you have a pipeline to Matt? or is this the way you get his attention? also I am still waiting for you to toot your horn with some awards and more art that you have done besides the few pictures I saw on your website?

QuoteAs developer a good usability is for me a very important part of the software. So of course, GC is nothing for you, you can not say, your are a man, because you can use it. The results will only show if you are an landscape artists. That is the reason, why even my alphas are easy to use. Only if it is easy to use, the testers are really able to work with it, and so to get results, where it is clear to see, what must be improved. If one user says, it is not easy to use, his problem, but if it is at least nearly the half of the community that switch back to old version or simply stop producing anything, then a developer really should wake up.


Humm, well lets see, OK well I use L3DT and I think it is hands to shoulders above GC myself, no that is not a put down, just a preference on software I like to use.  I found GC a bit to simple and didn't have the tools I wanted to use for projects so I went back to L3DT and never came back.  I do or did use it once in a while to move file names around some, but that was boring and found better solutions to my delemas. Yes you can get results, but for me, not the ones I thought that this artist needed for the projects I have been working on.

QuoteIt is pity, that you use discussions about software, to push yourself in the foreground. And it looks, like you are wishing, that TG2 will stay bad usable, because you then can get the feeling, your are more than others, because you use it. It looks, like all your talking is not about the content but about yourself and how great you are. Hope, you will find some day enough self confidence to simply take part and say your opinion without provocations, without saying how great you are, or how great and small others are, without this hahas and with really interest.


ROTFL ROTFL hahaha lolol I am sorry Cajomi but you a funny man.  None of that is true and your arian attitude is showing through.  I was using my art as an example only that things are working and not my ego.  Oh by the way where are the links to your masterpiece art I thought you said you did?  I am happy to bow to your mightiness if you show us all the light. In fact I have been getting private emails that show I was not the only one not happy with what was said, but those are private like I said.  I have many friends here, so was not surprising.  When one comes to the table to share and help it is always best weather your a developer or an artist to come hat in hand, instead of a German tank breaking down walls trying to be heard, which you have oh mighty one you have /bows.  But what you just said is Bull plucky......

QuoteI am sure, I am not the only one, who misses informations about the development, updates of the tech preview (it must not be the final release) and improved usability. But guys like you make many of them keep quiet, mostly if they are not sure, whether it is their problem, because they are a bit stupid, or whether TG2 is really bad to use. And if they read this thread, they make think, that they are right not to say it here.
To say it now clear: TG2 is not so difficult to use, because of its unbelievable power, but because the developer Matt has not spend enough time in creating a good and understandable work flow. That is a real hard critic to a software. But the success of TG 0.9 was based on the ease of use in combination with the incredible realism of the renders.


Well that is total and utter bullchit, I see good discussions all the time on the websites and forums, what the hell are you talking about dude?  You know there is a way to do it right, or do they ignore you there so you thought to try this? this is Not even worth responding to.

QuoteMatt said, that the first tech preview will not be easy to use, because of the node interface. That is not correct. That are not the nodes, nodes can be very usable. The problem is another. The logic is to far away from any conventions, the naming is not clear. Some functions should be separated and optimized.
At all, as developer I would say, such improvements can be done in four weeks for the complete Gui (full time developer) and would make TG 2 usable for the greatest part of the community. And I am missing exact such an update.


Sounds to me like you and Matt do not get along?, and I wonder why? hummmmm Oh I see it may be your Arian attitude dude?, maybe tone it down some?  So when is your preview coming out? I want to see this and see how much better you do then this has produced, with your attitude it must be perfect with no flaws, and no bugs right?  I know that is why 3DWS went belly up because of the way they tried to deal with GG as they had ego issues as well with each others developers and 3dws lost, be careful that does not happen to you my friend.

OK I am done this as this a waist of my time and this should go to Matt really so I think I will send him a link so he can address this poor man and maybe give him a helping hand as it seems he needs one badly.
As for the rest of you guys? your all right and awesome on the money and thanks for the emails I have gotten and the support I have received from many of you in private.  I will not tell you what they think of all this, it was not flattering at all ROTFL rotfl /smiles.

  We would all like to see things get better ASAP, but good programing takes time, I have one of the best in the world working for me and my company and I know what it takes to code good, and speed only makes mistakes as any good craft person would know, so I have my doubts about Cajomi in many ways, and I still have not seen one other link to any of his work, or not one Award that he has won as an artist for all his put down of others, so he kinda blows out the side of his mouth I think.  At least with the Arian attitude which I hate in white people, and yes I am white, as Arian Hitler got us in trouble and as Arian Bush is doing now so I call this "the Arian bullshit effect", and Cajomi seems to fit the bill in this way. Now this all makes me no better then him, so I am shutting up at the end of this email and apologize to all but Cajomi. Peoples tudes can really tick me off sometimes, and as an artist not a programmer I love this software. Cajomi just hit my anger sweet spot I guess /chuckles.....

  I think TGD2 rocks and anyone who don't ain't to bright. No one said theres not allot of work to be done on it, but please keep in mind we do have a chance to play with this now which is better then if they had not released it until the end of this year or the beginning of the next, don't you think? OK I am done have fun guys, and I am outa here /winks /smiles/ laughs /bows and gone.

DT
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: Oshyan on May 27, 2007, 09:56:35 pm
Fellows, this is a good and important discussion to have, and we'll respond in an official capacity soon. For now I just want to ask that the politics and personal attacks cease. This is not the place for it, and I'm speaking of the entire forum. Cajomi is an accomplished and well respected developer of a successful terrain generator and editor. Maylock is a skilled, knowledgeable, enthusiastic artist. Please respect each other and always assume that comments are meant with respect, especially when there are language barriers (as there are here).

If more personal comments are made or there is more baiting I will have to lock this thread and I'd really rather not - as I said I think these are important things to discuss.

Thank you all for understanding.

- Oshyan
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: DeathTwister on May 27, 2007, 10:32:58 pm
Brother Oshyan I agree and as I said I did get out of control a bit in my last email,

So I do humbly apollagize at least for my actions and actually have no idea why I did get into it so heavy, but I did, and as I said I have said my piece in all this. I guess I hate it when people put this program down and started defending tgd2, but that was no excuse for me to fly off the handle with my Arian cracks bull pucky. I am a bit sensitive that way I guess,  But that was what it sounded like at the time to me and I should have just kept my mouth shut, like I will from now on /bows....One thing I have learned over the years is you sure cannot hurry up programmers and developers in any way, it will get done when it gets done and not before, so I try and be mellow and waight and give feedback when and whare possible.  This post sure was not that one for me anyway.

And yes Cajomi is a very good developer and does make a good product, but was just very surprised about all the rest was all coming from such as he is.
I truly am sorry things got so out of control between us. I never should post before i have at least one cup of java in the morning, I guess I get a bit cranky sometimes, maybe the same for brother Cajomi.

  I take my hand out to shake in friendship as this is what it is all about and your right, I forgot we are from differnet countries and have different values sometimes, and I need to remember that fact more.  as do we all.  How bout you Cajomi let sleeping dogs lie and go out and have a beer? /smiles.....I'm game /winks. I actually just about never have posted such a post before except for on 3dws long time ago, and I plan to keep it down to a minimum for sure that way.
It really is about us all working together growing and learning together and sharing and yes, what I was doing in return was not it on this post exactly, to Quote Homer Simson
Quote/DER.....
hahaha but not really that funny. 

DT
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: Oshyan on May 27, 2007, 11:27:48 pm
Thanks DT. I'm sure we can all be friendly. :)

- Oshyan
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: cajomi on May 27, 2007, 11:56:24 pm
Well, may be my critic was a bit to general.

I think, everyone who is posting should have the chance to be heard, no matter whether he is a top artist or a newbie, whether he is developer or not. Because of this, I will not post a link to more artwork.

That angry arian part, well I think enthusiastic people are sometimes very fast, when they are writing, so I am. It looks, like this part of our persons, I mean you DeathTwister and me, leeds sometimes to more sharp or hard words, than they are really meant. But on the other hand, I like discussions more that are hot than the boring ones. Often there things are said , that elsewhere would only be thought but never telled.
So, when I critize so hard, that is because I love TG2, not the opposite. Else I would put my attention to other places.

For me the worst point in the TG2 tech preview is, how imported terrains are handled. I think it is easy understandble, why this is a very important point to me.
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: Oshyan on May 28, 2007, 12:03:28 am
Cajomi, can you give some more specific thoughts on the issues you see with imported terrains? Of all the issues you've raised (most of which I agree with), this is one I am not sure I fully understand. Certainly I see some issues, but they don't seem major at the moment. But as the developer of a terrain modeler I'm sure you see things that I don't.

- Oshyan
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: Cyber-Angel on May 28, 2007, 12:12:39 am
I think what is needed is for one of the staff here at Planetside to post and sticky the forum rules, as I don't see them any where on the site that might help a bit. Back to the topic at hand it is only natural that people will defend some thing if they see it been attacked, that is par for the course of human nature and this applies as much to software as it dose with any thing else, the nature of forums such as these means that as in the real offline world people will defend them selves and friends if they are been attacked.

Software is a classical example of "You can't please all of the people all of the time" no matter what features you have no matter how good they are, some one some where is going to be disappointed; then you (As a developer and vendor) never here the end of it until said feature/s are included.

This is hard enough if you happen to be a multinational like say Newtek or Autodesk it's even harder for a relatively small entity like Planetside with much smaller human capital bases.

There are two kinds of argument, augment of the first kind is the negative, destructive kind that leads nations to war and families to break apart and generally leads to distrust and loathing of ones fellow man generally unpleasant yet occurs all to often in human nature.

Argument of the second type (Called rhetoric by the Greeks and consider by Aristotle to be a critical part of a mans education) but which we will call debate here, is necessary and positive and leads to progress and the betterment of both the self and mankind; without which there is only stagnation and likely regression.

Regards to you.

Cyber-Angel      
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: cajomi on May 28, 2007, 12:31:09 am
Okay:

The imported terrain are lying flat on the curved surface of the planet.

After import you first have to add two operators: one for the height adjusting, one for the sizing, and set the values.

To use a mask, you have to do many things, to get it working. Fitting is not easy, because the preview does not show the fine details you need for example for flowmaps (left corner, center?). After changing the size of a imported terrain, you have to readjust all masks.
I am missing there an alphachannel that is separated from the fractal breakup and that has the option to fit simply to the heightfield. A slider, which produces a total overaly with the mask in the breakup, does not make much sense to me.
In GC2 there will a white/grey/black point setting, which makes much more sense and allows it, to use the same mask with very different results. At time, you have to change to photoshop, then back to tg, and that more than one time. To see the results, you must use the renderer, which at all costs very much time.

I am not sure, whether I am to stupid, but it did not find a "orbit" camera tracking, so that the camera moves around a selected object or heightfield. I really liked the old 2D preview of TG 0.9 and only missed there a zoom  function. For me it had shown, that it is in great landscapes the best way of camera moving.



Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: DeathTwister on May 28, 2007, 01:09:23 am
I'm headed to bed but Cajomi had a good point about....

Quotebut it did not find a "orbit" camera tracking, so that the camera moves around a selected object or heightfield. I really liked the old 2D preview of TG 0.9 and only missed there a zoom  function. For me it had shown, that it is in great landscapes the best way of camera moving.


yes very astute Cajomi and not only that but I find since we put a terrain on a planet that when we move the camera and after it goes off the actual square that it defaults on you can loose the camera completly and never see it again.  ROTFL.
That happened to me many times and could not figure out how to not only where I was really but could not get or set easiely any plants, mesh or just about any other import due to I could not see what I was doing.  It would be nice to have the terrain editor always follow the camera at least so we can always have a center to center on, and I could never get to do that.  But I am a dummy at times, and may have missed some button that automatically recenters the camera, but I never found it, and have so little time other then Tuts here and there I always like to just learn by playing like it is a video game and figure it out as I go. dum huh? but I get a kick out of it.  XCan we have multiple cameras in the free version? and in the full version? I just thought of that. Nope just checked at least not in the free version and that would be nice.  also would be nice to be able to actually see the mesh we import in as that would help a whole lot, but the cameras do not see the .obj very well, adnof course as Cajomi says the render time is a killer for sure, but not as bad as Bryce is for rendering hi quality, well mostly but I have tried some stuff that I had to give up on it was taking so long to render.
Another feature that would be nice as like in Bryce it would be sweet to be able to import what we want in where the camera can see it so we do not have to figure out where it is all the time.  Doing the Orbital render contest on design paths was not easy and I got lost a bunch before I started getting used to being in space hahahahaha, and got used to being upside down in my thinking, no siree not easy at all to do, but it was a fun fun contest for us all and I think we all learned allot. And I as well do like the way the camera worked in the old TG the way it was set up, but I do not think with tgd2 and working with a world  instead of dems or .ter files that that really would work for the new tgd2 now since we have to think in a circle, so there in lays the rub I bet. However the camera in the terrain window is a start, and it would be very nice if we could make that window bigger so we could see better what we are trying to do. hahaha Boy do I have my lists to put on planetside, my wish list is not small hahaha.

I always come at things from the dum artist point of view, meaning I know very little about programming and when it is simple in my workflow that is best, but guys, do I love the bells and whistles and layers of goodies that can be played with after the first simple GUI's. The nodes have there good points and there strange points to me so far, and yes I am getting used to them, such as they are atm, and I love the way tgd2 layers the shaders muchly.

DeathTwister
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: The Geostation on May 28, 2007, 04:33:49 am
Hi Cajomi,

I guess it's really "horses for courses" or personal preferences.   Different people get on with different software, probably because we think in different ways.   For me, after a few days of experimentation and study, I found TG2TP and World Machine very easy to get the effects I am looking for.   Conversely (and this is not an attack, but a personal preference) I have had difficulty with Geo-Control (in getting the fractal landscapes and embellishments I want) and with Vue 5 (in terms of its nodal networks).   For me (particularly with no 3DSMax experience, TG2TP's nodal network designer is for more intuitive than the one in Vue.

You mentioned that TG2TP seems to be a "spare time project".   In that past that is certainly true, and it may be so now.   However even if it is, I very much appreciate Matt's work and believe he is on the right lines.   I have a lot of faith in his output.   Also I've found that there is a massive scope for experimentation with what we have right now, so much so that I doubt I'll have tried everything before the next major update (but that's not to say I won't appreciate seeing an update soon).

All the best with your work on Geo-Control,

Andrew
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: cajomi on May 28, 2007, 05:20:18 am
Do I understand you right:
You think, there is no need for improvements in working with imported terrains?
And that you see the problems only in my own preferences?
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: The Geostation on May 28, 2007, 06:19:12 am
I haven't really had that much trouble with importing terrains (see here http://forums.planetside.co.uk/index.php?topic=1431.0), and heightfield functions can always be added to modify the scaling.   It's also possible to combine multiple heightfields - such as merging them or laying them side-by-side.

My observation is that if you think that Geo-Control represents your ideal interface (an interface which I couldn't get my head around), and TG2TP represents my ideal interface (which you are having difficulties with), then it kind of illustrates that different people like different ways of doing the same thing.

Andrew
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: Harvey Birdman on May 28, 2007, 06:59:29 am
The natives are restless...

It seems there are serious signs of discontent in the user base. We are promised an official response soon... . These descriptions of TG being a 'spare time project' are a bit disconcerting. As I said earlier I too paid for the preview and felt I received a fair value for the money. BUT!! it was also understood that I was helping to fund/spur development of the final completed product and I was under the impression that I was dealing with a serious entreprenurial venture.

I begin to doubt.

Oh, and DT? You seem to feel you have something important to say - at least the volume of your screed would so indicate. If you truly want people to read and pay attention to your thoughts, try dropping the juvenile Clockwork Orange crap.
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: cajomi on May 28, 2007, 07:25:15 am
@the geostation

In general:
I think, it is not so much a question, what way you are thinking, but what you want to realize. A software does not fit to persons, but the tools of a software fit to the goals, or not, of an artist. 
So, if you get a new idea for a landscape, it might happen, that exact the tool, you before see no great advantage in, is the tool you need now. It is not a philosophie or religion, but simply what functions do you need to realize your ideas. So it is also (for example) not a question of Vue or TG2, but for what do you want to use them.

And for version 2 of GeoControl the masking will be much more important. It will not only introduce really new selection methods, which TG2 is no capable of, but also deep improved flowmaps. It is not only the erosion, but even more the changes of materials (which is reflected in the flowmap) which is visible in nature. And to use this features of the upcoming GC2 in TG2 the workflow with masks is very important.
The sizing problem I mentioned above only appears, if you work with masks/image layers. Else, you can simply import the terrain and that is all. Working with masks was easy work in TG0.9, with a plugin, and it is really no improvement, if it is now a much more time eating work.

And yes, I am definitly tired of those post, saying, I have no problem, so TG2 is the best, it must be you who have problems. For havens sake, we are talking about improvements of a software, so why this permanent personal perspective?
Quoteand TG2TP represents my ideal interface (which you are having difficulties with),

This is a classical personal attack, comes friendly, but who says, that attacks can not be wrapped in a nice paper?
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: Drocket on May 28, 2007, 07:44:05 am
I wasn't going to post on this thread but what the heck :)

Like a lot of people I too paid for the deep + animation, the reason was two fold.
1. I want to see TG2 become something exceptional so I hope the money I spent helps, the developers do this.
2. I thought the price offered was exceptional and still see it as a good bargain, I bought the software for what it can do now, and it does some incredible things.

I have every faith in Planetside and that they will release TG2 when they said they will, if they don't then it is no big deal as long as they carry on fixing and updating it to get to the release stage.

Software takes time to develop, test and finally release and software as complicated as TG2 takes longer so I take it as a good thing that we don't hear from the developers very often. I don't know what Oshyans involvement is with Planetside but he is always on the forums and always willing to help out if people ask for the help (as do other users on the forums).

I know there are issues with TG2 in it's current state (I have a terrain I am trying to render now and it crashes when I try to render at 1920x1200) but what software hasn't got issues and TG2 is a tech preview. Sure, Planetside could probably release quicker updates but this takes time away from actually developing, every release has to be built, tested, web site updated and customers informed so this is no quick procedure.

Cajomi, I don't know what information you need but can't you email/PM Matt or someone directly at Planetside to get the information?

Anyway, back to the render :)

Drocket.
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: The Geostation on May 28, 2007, 02:05:55 pm
Quote from: cajomi on May 28, 2007, 07:25:15 am
And yes, I am definitly tired of those post, saying, I have no problem, so TG2 is the best, it must be you who have problems. For havens sake, we are talking about improvements of a software, so why this permanent personal perspective?


Hi Cajomi, my post was recognising the fact that we all have different preferences with regards to user interfaces.   I am sure you have your preference (as reflected in your own software), and I have mine (as coincidentally reflected in Matt's software).   I want to say "Matt, don't change the general principles of your user-interface, although I am sure it can evolve in a way that keeps these principles".

I have absolutely no problem with the Planetside's direction in their development of software.   In fact I APPLAUD IT.   OK it's not perfect, but I believe that Matt is doing a fantastic job and approaching the software in a wonderful, original and logical way.

Quote from: cajomi on May 28, 2007, 07:25:15 am
Quoteand TG2TP represents my ideal interface (which you are having difficulties with),

This is a classical personal attack, comes friendly, but who says, that attacks can not be wrapped in a nice paper?


How is it a personal attack?   If you printed out the whole sentence you would see that I ALSO observe my own difficulties and limitations with using Geo-Control and Vue 5.   See below:

"My observation is that if you think that Geo-Control represents your ideal interface (an interface which I couldn't get my head around), and TG2TP represents my ideal interface (which you are having difficulties with), then it kind of illustrates that different people like different ways of doing the same thing."

So if we include the first half of my sentence, are you are implying that I am personally attacking myself????(!!!!).   I would have given you the benefit of the doubt if you hadn't chopped my sentence, instead it now leads me to question your motive and whether you are trying to sideline me as a supporter of Planetside.   I hope that is not your motive and that you will be looking at ways in which Geo-Control can work with TG2 (i.e. plug-ins?).   If you want to find out more about how to interface with TG2, then why not send Matt an email and maybe discuss over the phone?

Please DO NOT misunderstand my motives.   My motives are to:
a) ensure that we have a diverse set of landscape tools, which will cater for different artists with different ways of working
b) ensure that Planetside (who I support as an artist) is given due respect for their efforts and business
c) to show honest respect and understanding in my postings - while reserving the right to communicate my preferences and observations.

Andrew
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: latego on May 28, 2007, 02:41:27 pm
I remember Dec 15th (wavy screen effect...).

I was eagerly waiting for the "thing", anxious also for the download size (as I was still on a 4KB/s modem and I was expecting a 20 to 40 MB download).

Then came the announce and I jumped to the download URL.

I clicked it, and was about to go make myself a coffee (it cannot be less than one and half hour, can it be?)... but, instead of the expected size, it was a 2.8MB setup... HOW DID they manage to do THAT? I know NO C++ GUI library which allows you to create complex programs of such a tiny size!

After having installed the "thing" I immediately took out my devel tools to fathom which GUI library "they" had used... and I got a most crushing shock: "they" had built their own GUI layer! (just have a look at the Terragen_2.ucr subdirectory inside TG2TP installation where you can find UI-related configuration files).

Haha!!! (Blues Brothers like light-from-the-sky effect...) THIS is THE reason why they are taking YEARS to build the program! Instead of leveraging a GUI toolkit like Qt http://www.trolltech.com/ (http://www.trolltech.com/) or wxWidgets http://www.trolltech.com/ (http://www.trolltech.com/) they are wasting their time in non-TG related coding!

I stress WASTING; I am a C++ developer since 1991 and, given the fact that there are POWERFUL, PROVEN, TESTED and PORTABLE GUI toolkits for C++ there is NO reason whatsoever to start you own one (I have used OWL, MFC, wxWidgets and Qt, so I know something about this subject..).

One does not buy TG2 for its GUI toolkit: one buys it for its functionality, quality, workflow and performace. Using wxWidgets or Qt one single programmer could write TG2 current interface better and in not more than 6 months, leaving all the remaining time for TG2 real functionality development and testing.

If money was a problem, wxWidgets is ABSOLUTELY free also for closed source apps (if you don't believe it, just read its license), if money was not a problem, download Qt and get out your credit card... it's just that easy.

Just have a look at Vue6 Personal Learning Edition. It is written with MFC (mfc71u.dll gives this fact away). It has an almost Windows-standard GUI, I started to use it immediately and in a couple of hours I was tweeking complex shaders... with nothing more than a couple of tutorials on my experience. By the way, some time ago, on Renderosity Vue forum one person gave the URL of a very old Vue demo. I downloaded it and having a look at its innards, I saw OWL dlls...

The moral: I am waiting for Intels E6700's to become a bit cheaper in order to build a new computer in order to run Vue6Infinite... (and also for work  ;)). Sorry, TG2 skies are still better than Vue6 ones, but everything else is a 1 minute point-and-click task (just compare a Vue ecosystem with TG2 populations). I estimate that Vue6 is 5/6 times faster for medium quality renders; I cannot assess the ratio for high quality ones because I did not end any of them (when, after 40 minutes, the startfield phase it not over, you can sense that something it not all right, don't you?).

One has to be realistic about development effort. If you are just two developers, you have four hand, 4 eyes and 4 brain hemispheres and NOTHING more: then you assess what you can do and decide what you can and CANNOT build. Dreams are beautiful, but then comes the sunrise and all that is left is the cold, merciless reality.

Sorry...

P.S.: Vue resource problems are almost all related to Poser imports: if you are not in the soft (or not so soft) porn business, you could not care less about Poser.
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: Will on May 28, 2007, 02:48:07 pm
Just a little sid enote for the above, for medium quality rendering the two are pretty much equal for each other (at least in my experence) though hight quality renders are faster in VUE 6 Infinite.

Regards,

Will
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: monks on May 28, 2007, 05:58:06 pm
QuoteTo use a mask, you have to do many things, to get it working. Fitting is not easy, because the preview does not show the fine details you need for example for flowmaps (left corner, center?).


I had a problem with this- it irritated me for a few hours, but once I worked it out (in this case that meant searching the forums), it seems like a reasonable start for a pre-beta software. These forums are a great resource already.

QuoteAfter changing the size of an imported terrain, you have to readjust all masks.


I agree, this is a problem (I currently have the task of changing about 15 of them to match terrain re-scaling:)) but one would think that Matt would give precedence to developing TG's native selection methods, rather than image map selections, because the firstthing you do is make sure that the app works within itself, then you concentrate on features that will make the app work better with other programs (ie imported image masks). If it's a choice between the two, you're gonna go with the former.

QuoteI am missing there an alphachannel that is separated from the fractal breakup and that has the option to fit simply to the heightfield. A slider, which produces a total overaly with the mask in the breakup, does not make much sense to me.


I found the notion of setting the fractal breakup coverage to 0.5 to use an image map unintuitive, but it makes sense in context- at least it remains consistent with the rest of the UI. Personally I would prefer it if it was simply an alpha channel input if only because I'm a newbie to the software. No doubt someone more versed in the possibilities of the current setup could convince me to the contrary.
I think my initial experiences with image map import probably has a lot in common with your own Cajomi. I found that the real complication of learning to use image masks was due to the fact that you have to set a few settings (which are not centralised to a single node/dialog say), scale, position, coverage. There's the minor detail that the fractal breakup input serves as the alpha mask, knowing that was a big help for me. That difficulty was compounded by the fact that TG (on one occasion that I know of) reset one of these key settings on reopening (can't remember which). But that falls under the category of a newbie using pre-beta software....you're gonna have problems right? :)


QuoteIt is not a philosophie or religion, but simply what functions do you need to realize your ideas. So it is also (for example) not a question of Vue or TG2, but for what do you want to use them.



I would argue that a lot of the functions are there but at the moment one needs a fair degree of competence to utilise them for certain things. Take BigBen's and Harvey's recent posts on selecting terrain by orientation. I would argue that these kinds of functions- specific to *terrain* as opposed to *rendering* should be encapsulated. OK, so that's where macros come in, but again one could argue that the problem falls into the category of pre-beta status of TG2. That's also where communities come in- it's often thanks to people that solutions are found.

QuoteIt is not only the erosion, but even more the changes of materials (which is reflected in the flowmap) which is visible in nature. And to use this features of the upcoming GC2 in TG2 the workflow with masks is very important.


Yes, this is basically the whole debate about giving more weight to terrain as a natural phenomenon as opposed to a terrain model. Give the user terrain specific functionality (as opposed to programmable functionality). I think this will become more the responsibility for the terrain modellers rather than the renderers because in order to advance, the two (terrain creation -> texture map generation) need to be more directly linked than they are at present. For that determinism to happen, you really need the same app creating the terrain AND the textures. Erosion is a classic example- you get your flow and deposition maps generated from terrain creation and export them to your renderer. Renderers don't build terrain and if you want your terrain to look that good (realistic) then you really shouldn't be relying on a renderer to do 'all of that' out of the box. I know that some do go some way: WCS and Vue. Of the two, WCS can do this with ease because most of its users work in the GIS industry and therefore have access to GIS data sets (basically selections from terrain), so it doesn't require that WCS built the terrain. Vue has its ecosystems but then Vue is further along in its development in such complimentary features- and I'd certainly hazard that they are no match for WCS in that regard.
However, I agree with you Cajome, that there are some basic things which could be implemented in the renderer here and now- such as selection by orientation- specifically terrain characteristics which are known to directly influence textures and object placement.


I think TG is a first class (if not world class) app and I fully expect it to go from strength to strength; I bought the Deep + animation version. No worries here,  ;D


monks 
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: DeathTwister on May 28, 2007, 06:39:58 pm
Hay brother Monks good to see you brother again,

  Hay you got me thinking and I have seen other posts here about the render engine problem that tgd2 has.  And I agree it is a huge issue in many ways.
I think the main problem is that it renders everything, even the terrain and more important the water that you do not see as well as what we can see in the final render window.  If the render engine would just render what is in front of the camera, nothing more, the render time would be less then half of the time it is taking now.
A render engine like 3D Max, XSI and other renderer's seem to while they use 2 sided mat, still only render in the full render what you can actually see with the cameras and not what is behind the next hill/mountain or the water under the mountains and under the ground that you cannot see. As it is it renders everything in the scene backs sides and all.  That sure would help speed up the pipeline very much just in that one area alone.
  So while I am not a programmer or elegant speaking like Monks just posted (good going by the way) I feel this sure would help all of us on our tgd2 road to success.
Bryce is another engine that renders like tgd2 now does, and that, was, and is, one of it's main failings in my opinion, even though you have to take the ray tracing into account and for some reason that is even worse when rendering using ray trace, but I have not used the ray trace funtion in tgd2 yet as I know how very pricy it is to use in any app when using renderer's. I really need to buy the full deep version soon, just to see how much slower when using anti-aliasing at 10 would be and the effect it could have on my images, for that alone I need to buy the deep version, even it it would take 4 times longer to render. And I am just using the free demo version atm. The water shaders seem to slow it down the most and fastest of them all in the render engine it seems to me.

DT
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: jo on May 28, 2007, 11:16:31 pm
Hi Harvey,

Quote from: Harvey Birdman on May 28, 2007, 06:59:29 am
It seems there are serious signs of discontent in the user base. We are promised an official response soon... . These descriptions of TG being a 'spare time project' are a bit disconcerting. As I said earlier I too paid for the preview and felt I received a fair value for the money. BUT!! it was also understood that I was helping to fund/spur development of the final completed product and I was under the impression that I was dealing with a serious entreprenurial venture.


We certainly don't describe TG as being a 'spare time project', it's a full time job and has been for a long time. It's what Matt and I do for a living, it is our job, it's what we do. It's only fairly recently compared to how long I've been involved with Planetside that I've had much spare time (like having weekends, for example) and I'm certainly not working on TG in that spare time ;-). Your registration certainly helped fund and spur the development because, speaking for myself, if nobody registered I would have to go and find a job somewhere else. All my income comes from your registrations, I don't have another job on the side which keeps body and soul together while I mess about with TG just for something to do with my spare time.

Regards,

Jo
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: sonshine777 on May 28, 2007, 11:41:44 pm
Bravo Jo,
   I don't think some people understand trying to make a quality product on a limited budget and manpower takes time. I am glad that you do take weekends off, it is good for mind and body to pause at least once a week. I for one am behind you all the way, and can wait until it is the way you want it (invisioned it)  to be. Keep up the great work. :)
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: Harvey Birdman on May 28, 2007, 11:58:49 pm
Quote from: jo on May 28, 2007, 11:16:31 pm
Hi Harvey ...

We certainly don't describe TG as being a 'spare time project', it's a full time job and has been for a long time. It's what Matt and I do for a living, it is our job, it's what we do. It's only fairly recently compared to how long I've been involved with Planetside that I've had much spare time (like having weekends, for example) and I'm certainly not working on TG in that spare time ;-). Your registration certainly helped fund and spur the development because, speaking for myself, if nobody registered I would have to go and find a job somewhere else. All my income comes from your registrations, I don't have another job on the side which keeps body and soul together while I mess about with TG just for something to do with my spare time.

Regards,

Jo


I am reassured. I know how hard it is to try to keep oneself fed with the proceeds of a software venture. I didn't mean to offend you or make you feel that your efforts were unappreciated.
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: jo on May 29, 2007, 12:21:39 am
Hi latego,

I'd just like to respond to what you're saying about C++ GUI toolkits. I'm the author of the one TG2 uses. We have good reasons for reinventing the wheel in this case. To my mind there are only two cross platform C++ GUI toolkits worth looking at, wxWidgets and Qt.

I worked on MojoWorld for about 7 or 8 months prior to its final release, back in 2001 I guess. My job was to get the Mac version working, when I started it was non-functional. MojoWorld uses wxWidgets, or wxWindows as it was then. The wxMac was very basic then, I'm not sure it was even completely Carbon compatible, but I had to spend a lot of time implementing new stuff and fixing other stuff, pretty much in parallel with Stefan Csomor who seemed to be about the only other person working on wxMac at the time. I had to spend an awful lot of time elbow deep in the framework, and that has put me off using it since. I also didn't like the general approach and API design much, it was very Win32 centric. I'm sure it has improved greatly since then and for a while I did follow it with interest, but my early experience with it put me off ever wanting to work with it again. I know I would very likely have to debug stuff inside the framework at the very least, and I didn't want to go through that again.

Qt is without a doubt a comprehensive cross platform framework. However, lets take the Mac for example. You use Qt to get an app which runs on the Mac, but you do not get a Mac app. I've seen a lot of stuff where people say "We used to Qt to port our app to the Mac and it works great", which is cool and all, but then you look at the screenshots and you see a very ugly and un-Mac-like app. For sure not all of this can be laid at the feet of Qt and a good part of it is no doubt due to the creators of the app not making any effort, but a lot of the Qt Mac controls just look wrong. Qt seems to draw its own controls, using native APIs for sure, and is not actually "native" like they suggest. Qt 4 may be different, but I downloaded the Qt 4 Mac evaluation and still was not impressed. Qt doesn't have a very good reputation amongst Mac developers. A particular sticking point I'm aware of is that the Qt OpenGL canvas was badly implemented on the Mac and it led to bad OpenGL performance. People had tried for a long time to get Trolltech to address it but without any luck. I would hope that was fixed in Qt 4. Qt definitely has a very professional presentation and effective marketing, but it seems like in the trenches it might sometimes be a different story.

I will certainly say that developing the GUI framework has been more work than I originally envisaged, not least because I've found that Win32 is much clunkier than I ever expected. For example I ended having to custom draw buttons because with Win32 you could have an image in a button, or text in a button, but not both at the same time. 32 bit icons with alpha in controls was another sticking point. If we'd started things later I probably would have used .NET underneath instead of Win32, but c'est la vie. I still would have run up against some dumb things though, I've sometimes looked at .NET to see if it's an improvement on the Win32 equivalent and found it was basically just an OO reimplementation of the Win32 API with the same sorts of limitations and restrictions.

You say something about things being a point and click in Vue and more work in TG2, populations were the example. I'm not surprised, Vue is considerably further along in its life. I think that you shouldn't confuse something like that with a GUI toolkit, because it isn't GUI toolkits that have anything to do with that. I hope you were just using it to illustrate a separate point.

What is kind of funny is that you point out Vue 6 is using MFC. Vue also runs on the Mac, and MFC doesn't, so in that case Vue must either have a platform abstraction layer somewhere (which is effectively all that the TG2 GUI framework is, in a lot of cases just a thin OO wrapper over the native APIs), or they have completely reimplemented the UI using different frameworks on the Mac and Windows. We could have done the latter, but that's what we had with TG v0.9 and it was a major drain on productivity. The bulk of the work I've been doing lately on TG2 has been some UI improvements and basically I just write it once, usually on the Mac, recompile it on the other platform and it just works.

One thing which has always put me off Vue is the fact that it's UI is not very Mac-like. It's file open and save dialogs used to annoy me particularly. I'll have to download the Vue 6 PLE to see what it's like.

Anyway,  I'd just like to say we didn't just decide to implement our own GUI framework for the hell of it. It's true that if we'd stuck with Qt we might have been further along by now, but on the other hand it probably wouldn't have been that much further and in the long run it may have meant that we couldn't deliver the user experience we wanted to.

Regards,

Jo
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: cajomi on May 29, 2007, 12:30:18 am
@Thank you Jo for this information!!


@The Geostation
Why do you mean you have to protect TG2 against my critic?
I definitly not want a GeoControl like TG2. I do like work with nodes. It is not the whole concept, the interface in general, but the weak points I mentionend, I would like to see improved.
Without that little "you have difficulties" I would not agree complete to what you wrote, but of course the personal way of thinking fits to some software better than to others. But using this small addition, you create the impression, that the weak points are not in the software, here TG2, but in my person and personal preferences. This is a typical and general way, to suppress critic.
In a standard situation: A says to B, that he do not like it, that B is making jokes about him. B answers, hey A, what are your problems? It is a simple rhethorical trick.
To avoid misunderstandings, I had first ask you very clear, what you mean.
You answered the first question with yes and the second also.  So, if you take the whole communication, it is clear, what you meant.

And do not forget: That you have no problems with imported terrains, must not mean, that there are no problems, but can also mean, that you do not stumple about them.
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: cajomi on May 29, 2007, 12:47:31 am
@Monks

first thank you for pointing the problems so clear.
And you are right, that was also I expected from an early build. And that is exact the point, why my starting post was about the update cycles, not the special problems.
These problems with the imported terrains were pointed out very early, discussed here, helps, about how to do it with the actual version were posted.
But of course I expect, that after that, the developers improve such things in the coming updates.

QuoteI agree, this is a problem (I currently have the task of changing about 15 of them to match terrain re-scaling:)) but one would think that Matt would give precedence to developing TG's native selection methods, rather than image map selections, because the firstthing you do is make sure that the app works within itself, then you concentrate on features that will make the app work better with other programs (ie imported image masks). If it's a choice between the two, you're gonna go with the former.


I did not want to say that, and I hope you are not right with that.

But if you are, here my message to Jo and Matt:
Please do not forget, that all those terraingenerators helped Terragen to get so successful. If you'll take a look in the rero galleries, you will find, that nearly all renders, which made it into the old top twenty, showed terrains, made outside of terragen.
In general I have the feeling, that TG2 is moving into the mojo world direction. This may cost all of those users, not working in a planetary way, like me for example, but in a "landscape" way. The break between TG 0.9 and TG2 is not only the interface.
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: DeathTwister on May 29, 2007, 01:01:22 am
Hay Jo and sonshine777,

QuoteBravo Jo,
   I don't think some people understand trying to make a quality product on a limited budget and manpower takes time. I am glad that you do take weekends off, it is good for mind and body to pause at least once a week. I for one am behind you all the way, and can wait until it is the way you want it (invisioned it)  to be. Keep up the great work.


I whole heartedly agree with that, in fact ASAP I will buy the deep version just to make sure I help and support tgd2 and the crew more, as I believe in you guys and think you all are Awesome.  as for all the rest? I'm staying out of it, I said my piece other then when I actually have something to say as an artist, and not a programmer.
  I actually am getting to really love the way tgd2 is layed out, and other then some issues I have stated here and there I know in time it will all be as we would all like It to be so I am content.

  This program for me right now is more of an art tool for me as opposed to a working tool right now I use every day for work. Oh I play in it every day, just not working it yet. The reason is I use Terragen to do some things as I am more into video game engine dev, so Use L3DT and Terragen together to get my Skies, terrain tweaks, and texture mapping done.  TGD2 at this time cannot offer me that area I need in video game dev, but I see a future where we will be able to I hope bring the shaders as imports into the game engines like we can game shaders, but that is another post for sure.
  I got into Animation just for anamay and film back in 99, and have been working on storyboards and have been writing the stories for a few films I have in mind to do and have been building mesh for them as I go along.

TGD2 is going to be my main form of planatary staging area building tool where it can all come together on a planatary scale, and animations that can go from the moon to the earth is ground breaking, when it is done for all that I have been working towards, so this for me is a god send brothers and sisters at Planetside and I for one thank you for that very much. By the time it is done I will be into full swing with what I have in mind using this wonderful tool, so you just keep on your course and do not let people rush you in any way, you have allot of people behind you Jo. 

DeathTwister   aka Maylock Aromy Stansbury
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: jo on May 29, 2007, 01:39:39 am
Hi Cajomi,

Quote from: cajomi on May 29, 2007, 12:47:31 am
Please do not forget, that all those terraingenerators helped Terragen to get so successful. If you'll take a look in the rero galleries, you will find, that nearly all renders, which made it into the old top twenty, showed terrains, made outside of terragen.


We don't have any particular interest in people only generating terrains with TG. I think you are reading far too much into the fact that some of the tools for dealing with imported terrains need improvement. In most cases we have simply implemented the basic level of functionality needed for the tool to work. I'm not sure we see any of the tools in TG2 as anything other than that at this stage. TG2 is still a Technology Preview, the idea is to show people what it can do in general and give them something to use even if it is basic, while in the meantime we continue to develop it and make improvements to specific things as we go.

Quote
In general I have the feeling, that TG2 is moving into the mojo world direction. This may cost all of those users, not working in a planetary way, like me for example, but in a "landscape" way. The break between TG 0.9 and TG2 is not only the interface.


You are wrong about that. TG2 has the ability to work with planets because that is the logical conclusion for a landscape app. We do not see that as the be all and end all of landscape visualisation however. We definitely see a place for smaller scale stuff as well. I'm personally not very interested in working with a planet as a whole, and would be more interested in visualising particular areas, and some small ones at that. Having a planet as the basis for a scene does not mean you have to do anything on a planetary basis. There are big advantages though, not the least is the elimination of problems with horizons and the ability to quickly have areas outside your main area of interest filled in by reasonable looking terrain.

MojoWorld was very much conceived as way to explore fractal space and the infinite variety of landscape type forms which can be generated. Ken Musgrave had some very high minded ideas about creating a metaverse and all that kind of stuff. I think I read somewhere that he thought MojoWorld would become a portal into an online universe where we all interact and voyage through infinite space etc. It just so happens that because TG2 has a procedural basis you can do a lot of the same sorts of things as MojoWorld, perhaps not quite to the same level of freakiness but once we've been able to implement more fractals and whatnot and we have a public API then I'm sure people will be able to make things as freaky as they like. However our emphasis is really realistic landscape visualisation. We think that if you come from the direction of realism then even the freaky stuff will end up looking more convincing and less like "freaky computer art". People have  done some nice stuff with MojoWorld, don't get me wrong.

Matt I'm sure is interested in making great tools for the CG industry. A lot of times that involves using handcrafted terrains, as well as convincing procedural terrains. I'm interesting in making TG2 useful for landscape visualisation more for the GIS/civil engineering/CAD side of things. That involves using real data. We're all interested in making tools for people who just like messing round with landscape images, like we do (just to add, TG2 as it is not really what we see for the more casual user), and that involves terrains from all sorts of sources. One thing we are not really interested in is being the next MojoWorld (especially seeing as they've both been developed about as long, with the difference TG2 was not publicly available for a lot of that time), even if, like I said, TG2 is versatile enough to do similar sorts of things.

Regards,

Jo
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: cajomi on May 29, 2007, 01:55:38 am
Thanks again Jo. That is good to here.

So at last, back to my early question and the start of this thread:

You know, some improvements are needed. Some of them are more work, some less.
So, what about an update?
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: The Geostation on May 29, 2007, 04:08:56 am
Quote from: cajomi on May 29, 2007, 12:30:18 am
@Thank you Jo for this information!!


@The Geostation
Why do you mean you have to protect TG2 against my critic?
I definitly not want a GeoControl like TG2.


And likewise I don't want TG2 like GeoControl.   A personal preference.   You stated yours at the beginning, and afterwards I stated mine - and by saying that different people (i.e. different areas of the market) thrive in different ways of doing things.

Quote from: cajomi on May 29, 2007, 12:30:18 am
I do like work with nodes. It is not the whole concept, the interface in general, but the weak points I mentionend, I would like to see improved.
Without that little "you have difficulties" I would not agree complete to what you wrote, but of course the personal way of thinking fits to some software better than to others. But using this small addition, you create the impression, that the weak points are not in the software, here TG2, but in my person and personal preferences. This is a typical and general way, to suppress critic.

You assume that your preference of one way of doing things over another is a weakness???   I disagree.   The comment was a contextual observation, not a means of putting down your opinion but supporting my opinion that we "don't all think the same" and different software with different approaches is the key to suiting different people.   Do you understand that now?

Quote from: cajomi on May 29, 2007, 12:30:18 am
In a standard situation: A says to B, that he do not like it, that B is making jokes about him. B answers, hey A, what are your problems? It is a simple rhethorical trick.
To avoid misunderstandings, I had first ask you very clear, what you mean.
You answered the first question with yes and the second also.  So, if you take the whole communication, it is clear, what you meant.


Jokes?   What jokes?   You think I was having a go at you?
a) I don't even know you or have any motive for approaching the subject in that way
b) See my answers above for the reasoning behind my words

I hope it's a misunderstanding, triggered by DT's earlier posts - causing you to think that I am approaching the matter in the same way as him (no nudging and winking going on here - although his underlying concerns are valid).

Quote from: cajomi on May 29, 2007, 12:30:18 am
And do not forget: That you have no problems with imported terrains, must not mean, that there are no problems, but can also mean, that you do not stumple about them.

Correct in that I haven't tried everything.   However it would help if you directly state the nature of your problem from the start of the thread.   That way, it may have added my immediate support, particularly with regards my own issues relating to the generation of fractal masks from within TG2 (derived from the landscape fractal itself).

Andrew

Andrew
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: cajomi on May 29, 2007, 06:03:05 am
Hi Andrew,

ups, I meant
"I definitly not want TG2 to be like GeoControl."

QuoteYou assume that your preference of one way of doing things over another is a weakness???

It is a weakness, if I would have difficulties, to follow other preferences. Then it is an exclusion, else it is a preference. If I prefer chocolate, does that mean I have difficulties with eating peanuts? No! If I prefer an interface like GeoControl has, does that mean, I have difficulties with the TG2 interface? In your interpretation yes, in mine no.
That is why only this small addition, this "you have difficulties" is not necessary.
It may be, that if you would try to realize the same with TG2, the thing with masking, you would have more difficulties than I - only a possibility of course, how can I know that - . So it must not be caused by my preferences.

QuoteHowever it would help if you directly state the nature of your problem from the start of the thread.   That way, it may have added my immediate support, particularly with regards my own issues relating to the generation of fractal masks from within TG2 (derived from the landscape fractal itself).


That was exact, what I had done, ok may be not so exact.
I had better simply said:
Why there are not updates?

This update policy makes me angry. I had not only paid to push the developement but also to get the benefits of the developement. I am missing those totally.
Someone here posted, that it take much time to produce an update. Well, I need about 2 hours for updating GeoControl. I can not believe, that I do that job (updating) better than Jo and Matt. So, that can not be the problem.
I really was unsure, whether the developement of TG2 still was a freetime project like TG 0.9. This point is clear now. It is not.

But if it is not, I really can not understand this update cycles.

Why have I not mentioned the special problems with masking before?

Because they know them. They were discussed. And they surely have them on the todo list. I am also sure, that they make a fantastic job on TG2 and that it will be a "beast" of power. But I have paid for this beast five months ago, and I think now it is time, to get a bit more for my money than I have at time.
That is exact the difference between freeware and commercial software. Most users here in the forum seem to have the TG2TP as freeware, and then it is right not to force something but to wait in patience.
And they should not attack those, who made the developement possbile by purchasing the TechPreview, if this people are not satisfied, because there are no informations about the developement steps, no updates, no official todo list, where you can see, what is done and what will be done.
If you are not willing to update, then you must inform your customers, what is going on. Else you need not to wonder, if they are getting in a bad temper.

I am in a bad temper, still, waiting for some concrete, information or update. And I am not bagging or suggesting, I am forcing, and that is my damn right as costumer.
It is also true, that I am as developer deeply disappointing about the communication. It was all times easyer for me to talk with Phelps (Vue), or other developers of Vue, or with the crew of Carrara, even though I am sometimes uncomfortable. But this TG developer silcence is really outstanding.
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: Will on May 29, 2007, 06:21:48 am
Hi, just anouther little side note (I'm trying to stay out of this before it turns violent) but Geocontrol seems pretty complete and thus updating does not take tha tlong but in TG2TP there is still a lot of unfinished code and major issues to be worked out which take much longer to deal with. I realize (and agree) that you have the right to be angry at the lack of communication but (and I mean no aggression in this) have you e-mailed Jo or Matt? they are generally pretty quick at responding to those.

Regards,

Will
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: The Geostation on May 29, 2007, 06:36:47 am
Many thanks for your clarification, Cajomi.   Looks like I made an assumption from the content of your messages about your regard for the TG2 interface.

It is my prediction that Matt and Jo will provide more than a glimpse of the "beast-to-come" in their next release ;D   The delays you note, may be related to issues to do with the forth-coming and intended multi-core capability - something that I believe is notoriously difficult to program at the moment.   While I don't think that it will be available during the next release, I have no doubt that Matt is attending to this right now.

I also get the impression that Matt is quite the perfectionist, with his attention fully focussed on the development of TG2.   Oshyan maybe the best route to gaining the answers you are looking for.

Andrew
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: cajomi on May 29, 2007, 06:52:24 am
@The GeoStation
Thanks for keeping the communication

@Will
Thanks for calming down.

GeoControl was complete, but now it is back in developement.
So, for example, I have disabled a main feature for while, because it is not working. That prevents not from updating. It is the users/testers choice, which build he takes for his work, yes and even the alpha builds of GeoControl are used in professional work.

Of course I see more problems with this great package than with GC. But the update cycle for GC is between 3 days and 3 weeks, in the average 2 weeks. The update cycle for Silo is/was about 4 weeks, and 4 weeks for Vue.
5 months with 1 update is outstanding.

I have emailed them.

I really can not understand this behavior. This thread now is really loud, and we have got the information, that it is no freetime project. It was hard work, to get this single information, a very important one. It is definitly no fun, to play here the angry customer/developer. But what to do?
And it is also no fun, to miss the works of so many outstanding artists at rero. And may be the reason is, that after the TG2 preview it is no more fun to work with TG 0.9. but on the other hand, TG2 is not far enough.
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: jo on May 29, 2007, 07:08:22 am
Hi Cajomi,

Quote from: cajomi on May 29, 2007, 06:03:05 am
This update policy makes me angry. I had not only paid to push the developement but also to get the benefits of the developement. I am missing those totally.
Someone here posted, that it take much time to produce an update. Well, I need about 2 hours for updating GeoControl. I can not believe, that I do that job (updating) better than Jo and Matt. So, that can not be the problem.


I'm sorry you feel that you are entitled to more TP updates than have been released. However we never said that registration of the Tech Preview gave access to all builds. It is not on the Pre-purchase information page :

<http://www.planetside.co.uk/terragen/tg2/prepurchase_tg2.shtml>

I don't know where you got the impression that things were different.

It is not our policy to release every build we make to the public. Our development process involves a team of private alpha testers who test builds in between the public releases. I've just released another Mac build to the alpha testers, for example. We aim for public releases to be reasonably stable, with any new features pretty well tested. TG2 is still in an alpha stage where we can be adding large chunks of new functionality, as well as making deep and wide ranging changes to existing code.  Alpha releases often include new features which have not been tested beyond what is possible by the developers, and it often needs alpha testers to be using things to turn up any bugs and such that we've missed. We do not want to release builds like that to the public. Tech Preview releases are made when we feel things have reached a reasonably solid state. Often when we are working on a particularly large chunk of code we cannot even release alpha builds incorporating other smaller changes as often as we'd like because things are not ready overall. As an example, the previous Windows alpha was released about a week ago but I had to delay the Mac version until today because I wanted to finish up some changes I had made.

I imagine that once we start to make changes involving multithreading the renderer etc. it is going to be some time before we can even make an alpha release.

For sure we can theoretically build a release build and put together a distro in a few hours just like you can (that is how it usually goes for alphas), but we try and accumulate a reasonable number of changes (which takes some time) or at least one major change (which often takes the same amount of time) before we do that. With both of us doing different things sometimes one has to wait for the other. For an actual public release things take a bit longer. We need to build release distros, we need to release a release candidate to alpha testers and make sure that enough try it out and make sure it's installing and working correctly, we need to make sure a reasonable number of mirrors have the new version before we release (which can take a day or so sometimes), we need to get the website updated etc. etc. It's not quite as simple as just chucking together a distro and uploading it.

Anyway, that's the last I'm going to add to this thread. I would guess, looking at where we are, that we are not too far having another TP release with a reasonable number of worthwhile changes ready, but I cannot give any sort of timeframe for that. I hope it's sooner rather than later, because I know there are some nasty Mac specific bugs fixed.

BTW, it's not really my job to be doing this sort of stuff anymore, I try to stay focussed on development these days. I think I'm all forum-ed out for now :-).

Regards,

Jo
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: jo on May 29, 2007, 07:31:25 am
Hi Cajomi,

Ok, really my last post on this thread...

Quote from: cajomi on May 29, 2007, 06:52:24 am
I really can not understand this behavior. This thread now is really loud, and we have got the information, that it is no freetime project. It was hard work, to get this single information, a very important one.


TG has not been a free time project for years and years and years and years. In fact basically it never has. I think it was only a free time project when Matt was at university, ever since then he's been working on it pretty much full time either as Planetside or when he was at DD. I worked on it for a long time without being paid because I was ill and needed something to do, but for many years it's been my job. Both of us have had brief times when we've been working on something else. I think possibly we haven't said anything about this because we didn't really think it needed to be said. To be honest, whenever I come across it I just think it's someone being a crank, and I can't waste my time on them. If anyone got in touch with me directly I would answer them. However, if we had to try and answer every angry person with the wrong idea about what we're doing or hit back at every rumor on a forum somewhere then we'd never get anything done, and in any case there is so much going on across the internet it's an impossible task. For sure we haven't done the greatest job over the years of communicating where things are at, but people just make stuff up without bothering to find out anything different. People tend to assume that when we're not in constant touch with the user community we're off doing something else rather than working. I only wish it were so :-). I certainly get more development work done now that I'm less involved with the user community directly than I was perhaps a year or so back, even though I do sometimes miss being in close contact with people. I find the forums much harder to monitor than where there was more happening with the email list, and I mainly rely on Oshyan to let me know if there's anything important I need to address and I swing an eye over the support forum periodically.

We've often taken steps to try and give a better appearance of being alive and kicking but I think often we're just so busy it's hard to keep that going. I wish it were different.

Regards,

Jo

Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: cajomi on May 29, 2007, 07:57:44 am
Thank you Jo for this reply.

It is a question of priorities.
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: Buzzzzz on May 29, 2007, 08:05:17 am
Jo you said: I'm sorry you feel that you are entitled to more TP updates than have been released. However we never said that registration of the Tech Preview gave access to all builds. It is not on the Pre-purchase information page.

However on the pre-purchase page is states:

You may purchase a commercial license for the Technology Preview which will remove these feature restrictions and allow you access to more frequent development releases of Terragen 2. You will also be entitled to a free upgrade to a final release of Terragen 2 when development is completed.

So my question is: What does more frequent releases mean? Does it mean we get the same updates that the  non-paying folks get?   I understand we don't get all alpha builds as you say. However,when I pre-purchased I was under the impression that we would receive more frequent updates than unregistered users. If that's not the case then this is a little deceiving in my eyes.
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: jo on May 29, 2007, 08:21:13 am
Hi Buzzzzz,

Quote from: Buzzzzz on May 29, 2007, 08:05:17 am
However on the pre-purchase page is states:

You may purchase a commercial license for the Technology Preview which will remove these feature restrictions and allow you access to more frequent development releases of Terragen 2. You will also be entitled to a free upgrade to a final release of Terragen 2 when development is completed.


Sorry, can you please post a link to which page says this? It's not on the one I linked to. I will have to bring this to the attention of the others so that web page can be updated. As far as I am aware the official statement of what the license entitles you to is on this page, which is the pre-purchase page :

<http://www.planetside.co.uk/terragen/tg2/prepurchase_tg2.shtml>

Regards,

Jo

Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: Buzzzzz on May 29, 2007, 08:28:33 am
Quote from: jo on May 29, 2007, 08:21:13 am
Hi Buzzzzz,

Quote from: Buzzzzz on May 29, 2007, 08:05:17 am
However on the pre-purchase page is states:

You may purchase a commercial license for the Technology Preview which will remove these feature restrictions and allow you access to more frequent development releases of Terragen 2. You will also be entitled to a free upgrade to a final release of Terragen 2 when development is completed.


Sorry, can you please post a link to which page says this? It's not on the one I linked to. I will have to bring this to the attention of the others so that web page can be updated. As far as I am aware the official statement of what the license entitles you to is on this page, which is the pre-purchase page :

<http://www.planetside.co.uk/terragen/tg2/prepurchase_tg2.shtml>

Regards,

Jo





Hi Jo,

Yes, it's right here:  http://www.planetside.co.uk/terragen/tg2/tech_preview.shtml (http://www.planetside.co.uk/terragen/tg2/tech_preview.shtml)  5th Paragraph
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: jo on May 29, 2007, 08:40:53 am
Hi Buzzzzz,

Quote from: Buzzzzz on May 29, 2007, 08:28:33 am
Yes, it's right here:  http://www.planetside.co.uk/terragen/tg2/tech_preview.shtml (http://www.planetside.co.uk/terragen/tg2/tech_preview.shtml)  5th Paragraph


Ah, I see. Thanks for pointing it out, I will let the others know about it. I apologise to Cajomi in regard to that, although as far as I am aware the official description of benefits to purchasing a commercial license is what is set out in the actual pre-purchase page.

Regards,

Jo
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: Harvey Birdman on May 29, 2007, 09:36:32 am
You know, Jo, this entire misunderstanding (if that's what it is) could have been prevented by more frequent communication with your user base. You've chosen a business model that has you accepting payments for an incomplete product with the understanding that this early purchase is going to entitle the users to updates. The frustration you've witnessed here stems, I think, not only from the fact that there haven't been updates with the frequency users would like, but also from the fact that inquiries here have met with absolute silence. You seemed upset about my questioning the number of hours per week dedicated to the project. What else was I to assume, when no activity is evident re: updates, and there is no communication on the subject? You may feel you don't owe the users explanations. I would argue that you do owe us explanations of these long delays - you placed yourself under that obligation when you accepted money under this 'technology preview pre-purchase' philosophy. Seems Buzzzzz has found this in writing. Perhaps you should consider a more accomodating attitude towards your paying users instead of running off to change the web page.
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: Buzzzzz on May 29, 2007, 09:47:01 am
Quote from: jo on May 29, 2007, 08:40:53 am
Hi Buzzzzz,

Quote from: Buzzzzz on May 29, 2007, 08:28:33 am
Yes, it's right here:  http://www.planetside.co.uk/terragen/tg2/tech_preview.shtml (http://www.planetside.co.uk/terragen/tg2/tech_preview.shtml)  5th Paragraph


Ah, I see. Thanks for pointing it out, I will let the others know about it. I apologize to Cajomi in regard to that, although as far as I am aware the official description of benefits to purchasing a commercial license is what is set out in the actual pre-purchase page.

Regards,

Jo



My Pleasure Jo, but I would think on a Business Site that all pages would be Actual and or Official. I read that 1st page and took it as Gospel so I didn't pay that much attention to the second page to notice that frequent updates weren't listed there. Oh well another lesson learned.  :( sigh..... And I think more than just Cajomi deserves apologies. How about all the pre-registered people that were expecting more updates than the unregistered? Well at least we now know not to expect anything to be frequent.

Looking forward to all Your's and Matt's hard work.

Regards

Jay
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: jo on May 29, 2007, 10:19:13 am
Hi Harvey,

Quote from: Harvey Birdman on May 29, 2007, 09:36:32 am
You know, Jo, this entire misunderstanding (if that's what it is) could have been prevented by more frequent communication with your user base. You've chosen a business model that has you accepting payments for an incomplete product with the understanding that this early purchase is going to entitle the users to updates. The frustration you've witnessed here stems, I think, not only from the fact that there haven't been updates with the frequency users would like, but also from the fact that inquiries here have met with absolute silence. You seemed upset about my questioning the number of hours per week dedicated to the project. What else was I to assume, when no activity is evident re: updates, and there is no communication on the subject? You may feel you don't owe the users explanations. I would argue that you do owe us explanations of these long delays - you placed yourself under that obligation when you accepted money under this 'technology preview pre-purchase' philosophy. Seems Buzzzzz has found this in writing. Perhaps you should consider a more accomodating attitude towards your paying users instead of running off to change the web page.


Please understand, I am just a developer these days. I have perhaps made a mistake in trying to correct misconceptions about what we are doing, but I thought I would jump in and say something because I thought things were getting out of hand. I certainly don't feel personally responsible for a lack of communication with users, because it's not my place to do that anymore, even though I do acknowledge it could be better. I also didn't mean to imply that I thought just changing the web page was a sufficient solution for those who feel they have been misled. I have let the others know about the situation, and that is as much I as personally can do.

I can't comment on the lack of response to inquiries about updates, because it is not my place to do so. Like I said, I don't even really read the forums much myself.

For myself, the explanation for delays between updates is the same as it has always been. I don't even see it as delays, because we haven't made specific promises about releases. I think it's better to say that the interval between releases has been longer than desired. We are working as hard as we can to push things forward. That has never changed, and from my perspective I can't say anything more that. I did try and explain why updates are not so frequent as might be desired, and when I look at it there has even been a fair while between alpha releases up until recently.

This really is the last post on from me on this thread. I hope that I have been able to clear up least a few of the misconceptions about TG's development, and hope that I have not muddied anything else. I shall now go back to my usual habit of posting little and stick to the support forums. I only really posted in this thread in the first place because I was waiting for a build to finish :-).

Regards,

Jo
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: Matt on May 29, 2007, 10:35:00 am
Quote from: cajomi on May 29, 2007, 01:55:38 am
You know, some improvements are needed. Some of them are more work, some less.
So, what about an update?


Hi Cajomi,

I agree that the frequency of our updates has been very low, and I would sincerely like to improve that.

We have been working on quite a number of fixes over the last couple of months, some of which have involved some fundamental changes to code that could potentially cause lots of new unexpected bugs. It was important that we gave the alpha testers enough time discover these problems (of which there were some). The last thing we want to do is give our paying customers buggy software, and although we have fixed lots of bugs we have had to fix some new ones.

I do not believe that the current update delays are representative of how we will proceed over the coming months and years, although from time to time there may be periods where the particular focus of our development makes it more difficult to keep to a consistent update cycle.

Regarding the promise of more frequent development releases to pre-purchasers of the Deep version, I apologise for the embarrassing inconsistency between what we intended to do prior to the release of the Technology Preview and what we have been able to achieve so far. However, I believe we can improve that situation in the upcoming releases.

Thanks,

Matt
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: cajomi on May 29, 2007, 10:56:58 am
Sounds very fair. Thank you very much!

Looking forward to that beast of software...
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: DeathTwister on May 29, 2007, 11:06:54 am
I think you did and are doing just fine Jo. Your doing a great job. /bows don't let em get you down /winks. You did good.
DT
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: Matt on May 29, 2007, 11:32:36 am
Thanks for the support.

I do think Cajomi and others have raised some important concerns, however. It's not our intention to mislead people or deliberately conceal information, but I recognise that often we don't make it clear enough to our customers what we're working on and why there are delays. I must admit that on a personal level I like to just get down and code, and then just release stuff when it's ready, but as a team we are all making efforts to formalise the process and improve communication with the users.

Regarding the usability of TG2, we're always listening to requests for changes and improvements. Having worked with the alpha testers on TG2 since 2004 I know that there are lots of very different ideas about how the interface should be improved, and often these ideas seem to contradict each other. We have had to plot a course through those (apparently) conflicting directions to arrive where we are today. It is still developing and evolving.

Whenever possible, if a suggestion seems to fit well with the overall direction that the software is headed we will do our best to incorporate it, even if it is not practical to make those changes immediately.

Cajomi, your "four week" estimate for the changes required to dramatically improve the user experience is very attractive. I would like to hear more about exactly what changes you think should be made according to such a plan. I did see your list of problems earlier in this thread, and I agree that they are problems we should try to fix, but it is not always clear how best to solve those problems in the context of the rest of the application. I welcome any specific solutions that you can suggest.

Regards,

Matt
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: latego on May 29, 2007, 11:41:49 am
Quote from: jo on May 29, 2007, 12:21:39 am
You say something about things being a point and click in Vue and more work in TG2, populations were the example. I'm not surprised, Vue is considerably further along in its life. I think that you shouldn't confuse something like that with a GUI toolkit, because it isn't GUI toolkits that have anything to do with that. I hope you were just using it to illustrate a separate point.


Exact, I was meaning that when somebody else has done the grunt work, you can concentrate on app-related tasks.

Just to give you an example of how my mind works (or does not work... haven't decided yet...) in late 2005 it became clear that for future works for my customers (video surveillance companies) a scripting engine would be required. It spent 4 months searching for an appropriate tool. I did NEVER envision rolling out my own one... and on Christmas Eve 2005 I found http://www.lua.org/ (http://www.lua.org/) (Blues Brothers light from the sky effect this time for sure!). In a few days I had a prototipical C++ wrapper ready (Lua has no canonical C++ wrappers; the existing ones are either too thin or too heavy, requiring a preprocessing phase) and in less than one month I could store everything I had done relating to scripting in the "closed case files folder" (Indiana Jones Ark of Alliance been rolled into a non descript government warehouse effect...)

A longer selection phase (unproductive I admit) enabled me to reach faster to the end result (if my clients had been more computer savy, I would have quickly gone the Scheme way but, as you can read in Lua architectural documents, Lua is a Modula like syntax plugged on an almost Scheme like core, so it is almost perfect!).

Bye and sorry if I upset you.

P.S.: if you are planning scripting for TG2, PLEASE have a look at Lua... you won't regret it.
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: Matt on May 29, 2007, 11:54:13 am
Quote from: latego on May 29, 2007, 11:41:49 am
P.S.: if you are planning scripting for TG2, PLEASE have a look at Lua... you won't regret it.


We are planning scripting for TG2, yes. Lua was originally my first choice, but in the last 6 months I have been leaning towards Python due to its near ubiquity within the current crop of 3D applications. There is a huge potential to leverage existing scripts that are written for other 3D apps and adapt them to TG2.

Please, if anybody wants to continue a discussion of the merits of either Lua, Python or any other language for scripting in TG2, start another thread on the subject so that we don't dilute the current topic too much. Cheers!

Matt
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: cajomi on May 29, 2007, 12:15:52 pm
well,

I think, if the operators for height and size are added automatically, if a heighfield is imported, and if they would have standard values that match the way, the terrain is handled without them, it would make the whole process faster, without loosing any advantage of seperating them.

The alpha channel should be separated from the breakup, and be named "Alpha" or "Mask", and the this mask should have as standard size the size of the terrain and fit automatically. Changing the size of the terrain should be automatically change also the alpha. So, best way would be, to express the size a factors (10-0.1) of the original terrain.

I think, this should not make that much work.

The only thing, with my little expierence of TG2, is the camera. I understand, that is has its orientation to the univers, not to a planet. May be, it would simplify all, if you can choose at start up, or somewhere, to set the world as univers or a one planet world. In a one planet world, the old TG2 tracking should be possible. I did not like that camara tool at once, but the longer I used it, I found it more and more powerful compared to a 3D view.
If now placing of objects would be done in this preview (with a zoom please) it would be really simple work.

In general, it seems to me, that the naming could cause problems.
For creating a heightfield, why should I use shader, was the first I hought. Shader are for the terrain after it is created, for the rendering. And for what I need a "reflective shader" when I am creating a terrain?
On the other side, if now is time to shade, what does the alpine shader there, I found in it no colour or distribution.
So, I mean, if the functions appear only where they belong and are sensful and named the way they work, for example "layer", "map", "functions", "displacements" and are grouped, it would all be much easyer.
Four weeks sounds long for that, but that would be not so easy. I am sure, the naming is in your thinking exact how you want to name. And I am aware, that naming and expectations of naming depend on personal preferences and often also on the other softwares, which are used.

And that is all I meant. I have found with GeoControl, that sometimes simply changing the naming of a tool or control can enhace the acceptance dramatically and that every control should have a sensful start value.
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: Oshyan on May 29, 2007, 02:44:53 pm
Cajomi, these are potentially useful ideas. I think the biggest problem with what you suggest is that (sensibly, I think) masks and other image overlays operate in the Shaders group, coming after operations in the Terrain group, s surface shader nodes have no specific association with any terrain. I do think it would actually be very useful to be able to associate any given shader with a specific terrain or other shader so that you could potentially isolate its effect. Currently you have to use separate terrain paths and a merge shader to get this working and it's a bit clunky. I'm not sure of how easy that is to deal with "under the hood" as far as how TG2 handles displacement, etc. but I think it does make sense to aim for the possibility of assigning things per terrain or terrain shader. In any case I see that missing functionality as being the most difficult and time-consuming part of what you suggest. The rest seems fairly easy.

Additionally, as the most active representative of Planetside in the forums and fielding the majority of support through email as well, any issues with responsiveness and communication may rest in large part on me. However I feel like we have kept up well on issues and questions that are raised. We provide as much specific information as possible when for example questions regarding updates are raised.

You speak of your communications with the Vue or Carrara developers being more pleasant, but I've simply seen little or no attempts by you to communicate, at least to me, on the forums or otherwise (at least since some initial strong criticisms). It is our responsibility to keep our user base updated and we do that as best we can given the uncertanties of development. Given our past history of missed release dates I hope you will forgive us for being perhaps overly cautious in specifying release dates for updates now. But in any case if a user has a specific problem, question, or criticism it is up to them to express it so that we can respond. As much as we may be aware of many problems already and be working on fixes for them as time allows, it is also very helpful to hear from our users to know what *their* priorities are. So I encourage you to express your feelings more in the future, but before they get to the level of clearly deep frustration that set the original tone for this thread.

- Oshyan
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: rcallicotte on May 29, 2007, 09:17:47 pm
What I've noticed in this type of environment, where a programmer opens up his process to the end users, it's only the users who understand what is a priority to the programmer (in my actual work) who will have the greatest impact.  Criticism is rough and especially seems unreasonable when someone who has little to no understanding about my priorities gets my job confused with their priorities.

Starting with requirements, I don't change those until I have the base requirements completed and only then might I ask the end user's opinion. 

In Planetside's case, their requirements come from us (on this website) to some degree.  But, how Planetside prioritizes these seems to me to always be their call.  Always, in my opinion.  Otherwise, it's too many cooks in the kitchen.
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: cajomi on May 30, 2007, 12:16:51 am
@Oshyan

thank you for making the problem so much clearer (with the shader nodes). I hope, this changing will be possible.

You are right, I did not take much part here. I simply have not the time. Hope this will change in autumn this year.
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: Oshyan on May 30, 2007, 12:45:47 am
I know you're very busy with your own product and from the sound of it things are coming along very well. :) If you do ever have a question and no time or interest to post it here you are always welcome to email us either at support@planetside.co.uk or to one of our personal addresses. Your input is definitely valued.

- Oshyan
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: Matt on May 31, 2007, 12:16:20 am
Quote from: cajomi on May 29, 2007, 12:15:52 pm
well,

I think, if the operators for height and size are added automatically, if a heighfield is imported, and if they would have standard values that match the way, the terrain is handled without them, it would make the whole process faster, without loosing any advantage of seperating them.


Yes, I can see that would make things easier for those kinds of operations. I am hesitant to add too many heightfield operators every time a heightfield is loaded, because there is always the question of which operators should get preferential treatment. But maybe scaling and vertical adjustment are the most important.

Quote
The alpha channel should be separated from the breakup, and be named "Alpha" or "Mask", and the this mask should have as standard size the size of the terrain and fit automatically. Changing the size of the terrain should be automatically change also the alpha. So, best way would be, to express the size a factors (10-0.1) of the original terrain.


I agree 100% that the Surface Layers need a separate alpha/mask (like the "blend shader" on some other shaders in TG2). The Fractal Breakup input was designed to give results similar to v0.9 surfaces with fractal noise, and is not a substitute for a dedicated masking input. The fact that the Fractal Breakup input can be used for this purpose has unfortunately lowered the urgency for adding a proper masking input.

Aligning image maps with a heightfield is slightly less trivial because a terrain may contain an arbitrary number of heightfields (or none at all). Not all users work with a single heightfield setup. Perhaps the Image Map Shader needs a new option that allows linking with a particular heightfield. This could be done in such a way that the connection is hidden from the network view to avoid clutter (in the same way that populators need to be connected to a planet but that connection is not drawn in the network view. I have considered linking image maps with heightfields already, but I have been waiting to see if I could find a more elegant solution.

Quote
The only thing, with my little expierence of TG2, is the camera. I understand, that is has its orientation to the univers, not to a planet. May be, it would simplify all, if you can choose at start up, or somewhere, to set the world as univers or a one planet world. In a one planet world, the old TG2 tracking should be possible. I did not like that camara tool at once, but the longer I used it, I found it more and more powerful compared to a 3D view.
If now placing of objects would be done in this preview (with a zoom please) it would be really simple work.


Orthographic views are on our to-do list, along with placement of objects in these views. I look forward to having these features, but I think these features alone would take more than 4 weeks to complete to a sufficient standard. They will probably come after render optimisations and multithreading.

Quote
In general, it seems to me, that the naming could cause problems.
For creating a heightfield, why should I use shader, was the first I hought. Shader are for the terrain after it is created, for the rendering.


I agree that there are many confusing names in TG2 right now. However, TG2's entire approach to rendering terrain of any scale and configuration means that it needs to use displacement shaders to create the terrain. I agree that using the word "shader" for displacement is somewhat confusing, but it is the same in most renderers that use displacement. In TG2 displacement and colour are often combined into a single shader to make it easier to achieve certain effects. For example the Fake Stones Shader.

Quote
And for what I need a "reflective shader" when I am creating a terrain?


Do you mean "why is it possible to choose Reflective Shader from the "Add Terrain" button?" I agree that's unnecessary, and maybe it would help if shaders were grouped according to whether or not they provide displacement (as you suggest below).

Quote
On the other side, if now is time to shade, what does the alpine shader there, I found in it no colour or distribution.


The Alpine Shader is a displacement-only shader, but it is still a shader according to the way that TG2 allows shaders to choose which kinds of modifications they perform on a surface. I hope this will be less confusing when we have better categorisation of the shaders.

Quote
So, I mean, if the functions appear only where they belong and are sensful and named the way they work, for example "layer", "map", "functions", "displacements" and are grouped, it would all be much easyer.


Agreed. Perhaps we can make this a higher priority in the coming months.

Quote
Four weeks sounds long for that, but that would be not so easy. I am sure, the naming is in your thinking exact how you want to name. And I am aware, that naming and expectations of naming depend on personal preferences and often also on the other softwares, which are used.

And that is all I meant. I have found with GeoControl, that sometimes simply changing the naming of a tool or control can enhace the acceptance dramatically and that every control should have a sensful start value.


I've always held those views too. For much of TG2's development lifetime the priorities have been different from those of v0.x because it was important to provide a lot of essential tools as quickly as possible for use in production, especially for things that v0.9 was never capable of. Of course a better user interface helps in every way but not if the underlying features are not there. This year we have to spend more time thinking about the UI.

Thanks for your input.

Matt
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: cajomi on May 31, 2007, 12:41:52 am
Thank you for this detailed comment.
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: Marcos Silveira on May 31, 2007, 05:42:49 pm
Give us water transparency, please!!!!!  :'(
I've been avoiding to render "waterscapes" cause the lack of it!!!
Title: Re: Waiting...................
Post by: Adam Chrystie on June 01, 2007, 02:24:16 am
I'm willing to wait for their releases.

Many of us chose to buy a "preview tech version". There was no mention of
being automatically entitled to alpha releases or being a tester.

Planetside has offerred a free version as well.

--Adam