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Cineversity

CV: Boole Tools Plugin

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Hey Everyone,


We've just released a set of plugins called CV-Boole Tools that greatly simplify your workflow when working with Boolean, Spline Mask, and Connect objects - especially when working with more than two objects.


Adobe creative software users will find these tools instantly familiar. The interface is modeled after Adobe Illustrator's Pathfinder palette and its keyboard shortcuts are the same used for different selection modes in Photoshop.


CV-Boole Tools are exclusively available to premium Cineversity members.




The Cineversity Team

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Yeah, it's sweet... right up to the point where non-MSA / non-Cineversity members have to shell out $295 for the privilege (AFAICT -- someone correct me if I missed something).

 

Based on my limited Cineversity experience, and complaints by MSA users about the speed (which I think are long-running complaints but not sure)...... Cineversity is likely not spending a lot of money on the serving of tutorial videos. The fact that one can rent a powerful high bandwidth, dedicated server for $500+ per month from RackSpace and other companies like it, and the fact that the trainers probably get paid about $1000 per hour's worth of new video, tells you all you need to know about the $295. It's not about paying for the servers and trainers, it's about paying for the plugin IMO.

 

Which is pretty sad, when you think about how much money people spend every year on C4D itself. Not complaining personally -- I skipped the last couple upgrades prior to R15. But Maxon and its subsidiaries have lost touch with freelancers and non-studio-employed professionals when it comes to pricing tiers, subscriptions, etc. Really frustrating to see them do something like this. Smacks of nickel-and-diming people to death.

 

I don't carry much weight yet in the C4D community because I'm a new guy and still have a lot of work to do and put out there, but people who really have some sway need to speak up on this stuff IMHO. It could be a real help to the community as a whole -- all levels of user. Lean on Maxon a little bit to deal up some fair pricing, or... add some substantial new functionality at the same prices. Maybe spread some Studio love to the Broadcast and Visualize versions more often. (I own Studio R15 FWIW but if Broadcast didn't have some obvious feature omissions, I'd have gone Broadcast -- and that's what Maxon is counting on. Maybe the registered user base is a lot smaller than I think it is and pricing changes aren't possible, but I doubt it.)

 

In summation: these tools should be part of a free update for R15 users, Maxon... given that R15 itself was considered by many to be a mediocre upgrade in terms of the number of substantial feature enhancements. No doubt the new modeling tools are great and the new rendering options (other than team which I've heard is buggy and which I don't use anyway), but it was not exactly a blockbuster release. To limit who can use Boole Tools and charge for it... I don't agree with that.

Edited by Zmotive

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Thank you for your feedback. To answer some of your questions, Cineversity is produced by Maxon Computer, Inc.

Maxon Computer, Inc. is a subsidiary of Maxon Computer GmbH dedicated to the sales and support of CINEMA 4D in North and South America, it is not the direct manufacturer of the product and does not make decisions regarding what is included with CINEMA 4D or BodyPaint 3D. Maxon’s product management team in Germany makes all decisions regarding what content is included in CINEMA 4D and BodyPaint 3D. Although Maxon Computer Inc and several Cineversity instructors have provided training material in the past that was included with CINEMA 4D, the product management team has opted for a different tutorial production process that allows for faster translation and can be included in the online help. Cineversity tutorial production does not take away from resources product development for CINEMA 4D and BodyPaint 3D releases.

 

We endeavor to make roughly 25% of Cineversity’s catalog available at no charge, requiring only a simple login to view the content. We are constantly improving Cineversity and are resolving the streaming issues that users experience on our site. Currently you can choose between three different types of video streams. Some stream types work better than others depending on your hardware and network environment.

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Thank you for your feedback. To answer some of your questions, Cineversity is produced by Maxon Computer, Inc.

 

Maxon Computer, Inc. is a subsidiary of Maxon Computer GmbH dedicated to the sales and support of CINEMA 4D in North and South America, it is not the direct manufacturer of the product and does not make decisions regarding what is included with CINEMA 4D or BodyPaint 3D. Maxon’s product management team in Germany makes all decisions regarding what content is included in CINEMA 4D and BodyPaint 3D. Although Maxon Computer Inc and several Cineversity instructors have provided training material in the past that was included with CINEMA 4D, the product management team has opted for a different tutorial production process that allows for faster translation and can be included in the online help. Cineversity tutorial production does not take away from resources product development for CINEMA 4D and BodyPaint 3D releases.

 

We endeavor to make roughly 25% of Cineversity’s catalog available at no charge, requiring only a simple login to view the content. We are constantly improving Cineversity and are resolving the streaming issues that users experience on our site. Currently you can choose between three different types of video streams. Some stream types work better than others depending on your hardware and network environment.

 

I'm not trying to be a jerk here (really, I'm not -- I think C4D in general is great and I always appreciate seeing developer reps in forums like this), but much of your last post is hair-splitting, PR nonsense. You speak as if you're a completely different entity, unaffiliated in any way except ownership (like Universal Studios and Comcast). Do your two companies not collaborate heavily? Do your two companies not come up with game plans for providing various kinds of content and add-ons? Or do you operate in a vacuum, despite sharing a name and a focus on the same product? :ph34r:

 

But let me ask you this... who made the plugin (an employee of Maxon Computer Inc, or GmbH)? Or a third party hired by one of the two Maxon companies? If the latter, that's a different matter (any independent developer should be paid), but in that case the way the product is being sold is very shady. Otherwise those tools are owned by Maxon GmbH, right? Because if your company is owned by them, everything you make or acquire (videos, boolean tools, web sites...) is owned by them, ultimately. So seems like the power is definitely there to set this up in a more user-friendly way.

 

Here's the bottom line: as customers, we don't CARE who the subsidiary is and who the "big owner" is, we don't care who sets Cineversity policy or who decides which training content goes where (or which plugins "extras" get charged for). What we care about is the total package and the total experience of buying, learning and leveraging the tools MAXON et al provides. This aspect of the process, feels like adding more expense, to an already very expensive product, for a single upgraded tool, even though the product was upgraded only a few months ago. To us you ARE one company from that standpoint. When Maxon GmbH bundles Cinversity in with MSA, that tells me you're two closely linked entities. Or does Maxon GmbH have no control at all over things like MSA, either? Seems to me Maxon GmbH could've chosen NOT to charge for these Boolean tools, ultimately... even if someone at Maxon Computer, Inc thought it would be a good idea.

 

You can throw PR at us (so that you can justify charging more money for another tool), or you can address the problem by sending suggestions up the ladder. The problem is: non-MSA / non-Cineversity people who purchased a $3000+ license for R15 should get the Boolean add-ons for free. Period. For R14 and earlier, I get why you might charge those people (because they didn't pay for R15).

 

I also think the price of Cineversity for non-Prime license holders should be $99 max annually but that's another can of worms.

 

You can either choose to stuff like this seriously and pass the information forward to create a solution, or you can ignore me because I'm "just one customer". I get that I am... but seriously... Don't try to convince me you're helpless to change anything with this situation. You're not. :blink:

Edited by Zmotive

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I can't really get into the company structure, but each MAXON office operates fairly independently. I understand why customers see MAXON as one big conglomerate, but it simply doesn't work that way.

 

I'm pretty sure everyone with an active MSA this year received Cineversity Premium as a bonus benefit. Even if you don't have MSA, you can access over 600 free tutorials, including the 22-part Getting Started series we published in December, the 17-part Cineware in Production series published a couple of weeks ago, archives from presentations at the MAXON NAB and Siggraph booths, and my CV-ArtSmart plugin, which I think is pretty darn cool if I do say so myself.

 

I'm sorry you're disappointed in what Cineversity offers and how we offer it. We'll take your feedback under consideration.

 

 

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I can't really get into the company structure, but each MAXON office operates fairly independently. I understand why customers see MAXON as one big conglomerate, but it simply doesn't work that way.

 

I'm pretty sure everyone with an active MSA this year received Cineversity Premium as a bonus benefit. Even if you don't have MSA, you can access over 600 free tutorials, including the 22-part Getting Started series we published in December, the 17-part Cineware in Production series published a couple of weeks ago, archives from presentations at the MAXON NAB and Siggraph booths, and my CV-ArtSmart plugin, which I think is pretty darn cool if I do say so myself.

 

I'm sorry you're disappointed in what Cineversity offers and how we offer it. We'll take your feedback under consideration.

 

 

 

Thanks for taking the time to post, Rick. Again it's great to see this type of interaction between company and end-users.

 

Respectfully, this really doesn't have to do with Cineversity per se. I did mention the performance and speeds earlier but that is somewhat peripheral to the main issue in this particular case. It has more to do with creating new tools that improve C4D workflow, and charging $295 for them, even if one purchased R15 or the R15 upgrade recently. Plain and simple.

 

You can talk all you want about corporate structure and "fairly independent," but that's all another way of saying "fairly interconnected," too. Any Maxon entity, shouldn't use Boole Tools as a money maker WRT to people who just ponied up a lot of money for the latest upgrade. For users of older versions? OK I can see that. The bit about the free content, I get that and like it and appreciate it (to the extent I use them).

 

I also get that you want more people to use Cineversity and that this is a way to incentivise that (or am I off base?), but who the user is (in this case), matters. Doesn't it? Does it seem unreasonable to you (or Maxon GmbH) to include Boole Tools in an R15 updater (either direct via the Maxon updater server, or downloaded from Cineveristy) for licensed R15 users? Without paying for Cineversity if they don't have it already? If so, why?

 

[Again I get that if it's a 3rd party developer, they should be compensated -- maybe you purchased the rights to these plugins and that's fine, but my R15 argument still stands in that case. We're not the ones who should be charged in this case, IMHO.]

 

I assume since you claim some autonomy, that Maxon GmbH would not interfere if you decided to provide this plugin to a certain group of users free of charge?

 

[Edited for tone and clarity. Don't want to give the wrong impression here... not trying to be combative.]

Edited by Zmotive

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