Apple buyout of Alias|Wavefront

Discussion in 'Apple, Inc. Rumors' started by Scottgfx, Mar 11, 2002.

  1. Scottgfx macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2002
    Location:
    Fort Myers, FL
    #1
    There is some talk out there of Apple buying Alias|Waveront, the makers of Maya.

    www.cgchannel.com had a link to this rumor on another site, but they have since taken that down. (Only after a few hours I might add, Currently they have ads for Maya! Hmmm.)

    After racking my brain for a few minutes, I finally remembered the link location. (I was at work when I read it so I couldn't check the history)

    http://www.zoorender.com/html/news1.htm

    So, what of this? Should Apple buy Alias|Wavefront? It appears that the company is hurting. It might be a good deal. What would become of Lightwave? (My 3D app of choice for 10 years!)

    Wow, my brain actually hurts after my effort to remember an obscure web link from five hours ago! Ouch.
     
  2. OSeXy! macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2002
    Location:
    London (or virtually here)
    #2
    That's funny...

    That article is ripped-off verbatim from AtAT:

    http://www.appleturns.com/scene/?id=3618

    Oops! No credit given to Jack Miller... Can anyone spell plagiarism?

    On subject: seems a fairly reasonable rumour, given Apple's other recent acquisitions. I really wish Apple would buy out Bentley so I could use MicroStation on the mac again... been floating in PeeCee wilderness at the office too long now... Don't forget about us architects, Apple!
     
  3. mymemory macrumors 68020

    mymemory

    Joined:
    May 9, 2001
    Location:
    Miami
    #3
    I think would be good for Apple to buy Alias, but Apple should face something...

    APPLE COMPUTERS ARE THE WORST SISTEMS IN THE MARKET FOR 3D!!!

    There are custom made PC's that perform way too better than the best Mac, specially for the capacity of using normal ram as video ram for render.

    I have been working in 3D enviroments for 5 years now, and Mac are behind everyone.
     
  4. Scottgfx thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2002
    Location:
    Fort Myers, FL
    #4
    The one day I don't look at AtaT! Funny.

    Well, I don't think Apples are THAT bad. I've been using Lightwave on the Mac ever since 5 first came out. Much faster than the Amiga system I was using before. :)

    Where I work, I'm using LW7 under MacOS 9.2. At home I have it running under OS-X. X makes a big difference in OpenGL performance. While still not as zippy as my Athlon 1800+, I still choose to use the mac. It's getting better and I'm sure there is a reason why companies are choosing to port their products to the Mac. There must be a market there, or they wouldn't bother. Or perhaps they know something we don't.
     
  5. crassusad44 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2001
    Location:
    Scandinavia
    #5
    not anymore!

    If you use Mac OS 9 I would agree, but OS X could bring the Mac to the forefront of 3D technology. it's a reson why we see Maya on OS X, among others...
     
  6. chrixxa macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2002
    Location:
    orlando florida
    #6
    apple 3d

    i hate to say this, but regardless of whether crassusad44 has worked in 3d for 5 years or not, he/she doesn't know what they're talking about. apple isn't behind anyone in 3d, because apple doesn't make 3d software. and software is the key word here. you're right about there not being much to offer in the way of 3d when mac comes to mind, but that's not because the hardware isn't capable of supporting it, in fact i'll bet you that if we had any equal comparison for the mac side as far as software applications are concerned, the mac would outperform any PC--but we don't have any equal comparison, because there is no software package (besides lightwave) that has an equal version counterpart on the mac side. sure there's a maya for mac, but it's version is behind its windows counterpart, because it's fairly new. this has always been the argument for software as far as mac vs. pc, because software companies must worry about sales, and there just aren't as many mac users as there are PC users. Personally, my favorite 3d app is 3ds Max 4, and i would do backflips if there was a mac version--but there's not--everyone speaks all these rumours about this company or that porting to the mac side, but does it ever happen? very rarely. it's because of SALES that we don't have as many options for 3d software for our Macs--not because the hardware isn't capable. i'd be willing to bet my car that if we had a proper version of 3dsmax for mac that was written to take full advantage of the altivec engine in the g4 chips that it would noticeably outperform any pentium or amd--especially in rendering.
    and besides, crassusad44 should take note that nvidia, the company that currently sets the standards for video cards (especially 3d capable cards), released their geForce 3's and 4's on the mac first--before any PC heads got hold of it.
     
  7. Scottgfx thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2002
    Location:
    Fort Myers, FL
    #7
    I have a friend in Orlando who is a heavy user of (and I believe, a beta tester of) 3D StudioMAX. I got the impression from him that the developers were serious fans of WinNT and that they built the app from the ground-up to take advantage of everything it had. This was 4 or 5 years ago when Microsoft was making a strong push into content creation with NT. Today, feelings may have changed

    I assumed that the developers probably just didn't want to bother with OSX, because they liked NT so much. Or how about this... Autodesk-Discreet has a port made of MAX to the Mac, and decides to shelve it... not because it sucks, but because they fear it's too good and will just tick off the NT users and developers. Just my own conspiracy theory. :)

    I can see the higher-ups in the company looking at NewTek and wishing that they had a product that could go into the Mac marketplace. For a few years NewTek practicaly had the Mac 3D market to themselves.

    Infini-D, RayDream both went away. Electric Image went cross-patform and sort of dissapeared. Strata has always been a strange bunch, and sort of ticked off their user base to the point they stopped coming back. I for a few years kept using my Amiga for Lightwave, because I didn't like anything I saw on the Mac. Back then, Electric Image was about the ony serious Mac 3D app, but it was over $3000.

    In 1994, a product manager from NewTek was at the BDA-Promax convention in New Orleans. I went up to him after whatever session he was a speaker at, and told him that we needed Lightwave on the Mac. I would like to think that I was at least partially responsible for it happening. :) Well, perhaps not, but my arguement to him was that many TV stations had art departments based around Macs and we needed something better than Infini-D.
     
  8. mozez macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2001
    #8
    ok, first things first, alias is owned by sgi, so if they get bought by apple, apple pays sgi, not alias. second, sgi has dropped badly, why, cause of nt, it eventually turned out that you could build the same box sgi was selling but for 10 times less, so sgi stock dropped like hell, the only thing they have left for hardware is their supercomputers, onyx. the people who would like to buy them out for their hardware is sun microsystems. alias, however is doing great, beyond great. maya unlimited sells for 17,000 and more if you have multiple computers, tech supposrt as well costs thousands and you know what, nobody is complaining, they all pay, like my company, with no ill will at alias. now, it was said that if you optimized maya and max and all that on the mac to use the altivec and the g4s power it might be faster, wrong. flat out wrong actually. you'd have to program for vector based math and guess what, 3d doesn't use it much, not in the programming part. maya on the mac lacks tons of features, even the basic multiprocessing, go check alias's website, mac can't use dual processing with maya, not because of hardware, but the os, osx is like a hacked unix, so standard code doesn't work, why bad porting, cause it'd take a while, not to mention a ton of money to get programmers to convert the code and get everything working on a young and untested os. not being mean, just realistic. it wouldn't piss people off if mac went faster, companies would switch and move if it really could. but if you want to test after optimizers are set, well then they have to optimmize for p4s and amds cause maya isn't optimized for those either. max is built around the kernal of nt, you'd have to restructure the whole program, and to do that costs money, and for what? they wouldn't make enough money and it would not go faster. and for the person who said nvidia chips were out on the mac first is dead wrong, apple got in big trouble from nvidia for even trying to claim it, truth is apple claimed they had it before they really did, and had to take it off their site until feb5th, the pc release date, apple didn't have the geforce 4 untill end feb, sure, you could order it in jan, but you wouldn't get it till at lease end feb, early march, preorders don't count ok, if i had a pc, i could have had the geforce 4 in my hands almost a month before any mac user ever could. the second trick apple used was the geforce 4 mx in their boxes, it's actually, and you can look this up, a geforce 3 mx, not 4, the core is a 3 and ramdac is also 3, but they didn't want to realease old hardware so they called it a 4, if you buy a geforce 4 mx retail box, it knocks the pants off the one installed in the apple. so, to finish up, maya on the mac was made for design puposes, they only released the basic maya because it keeps it at a 7,000 dollar price range, high but affordable for design houses. it was never meant to be the full 3d package. hey man, i love maya on my powerbook, and i'd love it to be more optimized, but it's wishful thinking, apple will not buy alias, simple as that.
     
  9. cb911 macrumors 601

    cb911

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2002
    Location:
    BrisVegas, Australia
    #9
    it would be good for Apple to buy Alias|Waveront, then they could develop Maya to take full advantage of the G4 processor and OS X. that would have to make apple alot more competitive with PC's.
     
  10. Scottgfx thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2002
    Location:
    Fort Myers, FL
    #10
    Hmmm, from what I have read, the core of the GeForce 4MX cards (PC and Mac) are all based on what was going to be released as the GeForce 3MX. Because of the timing of the new GeForce 4 core, they canged the name of the 3MX to a 4MX. It's just a marketing thing. Now, if you go out a buy a GeForce 4TI, then you will have something faster than the GeForce 3TI, as the 4MX is actually slower. Anyone who cares to, you can go to a PC website like Anandtech.com or Tomshardware.com and read up on things like these.

    Just to make my point more clear...

    nVidia never released a chipset called a GeForce 3MX, so Apple could never have offered it in their machines. :p
     
  11. Scottgfx thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2002
    Location:
    Fort Myers, FL
    #11
    Also... I don't think anyone here ever said that Alias|Wavefront was not owned by SGI. I said that they were hurting in my first post. Alias|Wavefront just closed two offices. Yeah, they "are doing great".

    Finally... You called OSX a "hacked" UNIX. any more hacked than Irix? I'm no OS expert, but everyone's been talking about how great OSX is and how it's POSIX complient. If NewTek could bring out a port of their 3D software last year, and support MP, then I don't believe that there should be too much trouble for any other developer.

    I will mention this though. NewTek rebuilt the app from the ground up for v6. Alias|Wavefront has been around a lot longer than Lightwave and probably has a lot more legacy code. The lineage of Wavefront alone goes back over 20 years to the production of TRON and a company called Robert Abel and Associates.
     
  12. beigemac macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2002
    #12
    I guess basically OS X is basically bringing in the 3D applications. Maya was'nt the only debut! High-end market stuff like Kydera's Tool box (i think thats the name) and French 3d landscape software Vue despirit (whatever, Frogs!) was ported. Yeah every new software and OS is gonna have the inital teething problems which will show in terms of speed (its pretty crappy actually). On the Mac hardware side in terms of 3Deeds performance, better memory technology such as DDR or RD and also ATA 100 or higher would tremendously boost performance .

    On the rumors side of things the MAX port is classic but the new rumor on forums such as postforum is that 3d giant Softimage is crashing in on the OSX party! Its pretty suspect, but those bastards do have a tendency to copy Maya so who Know! Softimage XSI experience, my A**!!!!!
     
  13. Moe42 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2002
    #13
    Beigemac >>

    Are u nuts? I always find it funny when Mac users bash Softimage. I've been working in 3D for years, using both Maya and Softimage, and aside from some issues with XSI v.1.0, Soft has always been miles ahead of Maya. I equate XSI/Maya with Mac/PC. Softimage is the Mac of the 3D world. Even though it's a much more robust program (and a much better interface), most people use Maya. Believe me, anyone who has tried XSI 2.0 would be hard pressed to find a reason to go back to maya. It's a shame Softimage hasn't yet produced a Mac version, but I'd rather have stability and a rich feature set (even if it means using it on a pc -ack- for now) over the travesty that is Maya for Mac OSX.

    As for Softimage 'copying' AW with the Softimage Experience CD, didn't they come out less than a week apart?? So you're saying soft developed a demo cd with full docs AND a full video training CD in ONE WEEK?

    My hat's off to Softimage if you're right! :)

    Actually, alongside my Taste of Maya CD that I received last year, is my Softimage|XSI v.1.5 Demo CD, which came out a little bit earlier....


    I'm ranting...I'll stop...they're both good progs and the competition between them is good for all of us in the industry.



    -Moe
     
  14. beigemac macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2002
    #14
    Hey Moe42!

    Don't get all worked up man! Just putting in my two cents. Yes XSI Experience was launched about a week after Maya PLE, but Aliaswavefront had intially announced Maya PLE more than a month prior to the launch. So i am not saying one week, i am saying one and a half months, which is sufficent time to deploy copycat tactics! Its like Coke vs Pepsi!
    I don't hate Softimage XSI, hey i think they got the coolest packaging for any 3d app (EI has the worst)! Their GUI is so groovy, I even have a demo reel of the stuff made on XSI, though i have'nt really tried XSI! I personally rank XSI number 2 in 3d apps:

    For your intrest here's my ranking list according to industry usage in Europe and the Sates:

    1 Maya
    2 Softimage XSI
    3 3D MAX
    4 Lightwave
    5 Cinema4d
    6 EI

    And please don't say MAc users bash Softimage! Yor argument is just not valid cause bascally Macusers don't know Softimage XSI exists! Hardcore Mac fans only know software that exists on the Mac platform cause their a) too ignorant or B) too arrogant! I fall into the later ha ha ha! Now if i swore by the MAc i would only think XSI was cool if it was on the MAC, basically were hipocrits!

    XSI is owned by Avid who are gonna release Avid DV express on the mac cause they see a rise in digital video edditing on the Mac platform. Yeah they want to challenge FCP and have already mocked FCP in various exhibition shows. An insider from Avid has also hinted on XSI being ported on the Mac! And i have to admit that mac is a **** platform for 3d which i hope OSX and new hardware will change!

    You know that the final fronteer for the MAC is 3d ands thats the next thing that JOBS will have to pull out of his HAt!!!!
     
  15. mymemory macrumors 68020

    mymemory

    Joined:
    May 9, 2001
    Location:
    Miami
    #15
    If Apple got Alias...... man, that means that Apple will develop some very serious computers in the near future.

    I mean, the Silicon Graphics where away of time with the OS, networking and speed. Even the O2 was a nice computer (and it looks a bit like the cube).

    To run Alias softwares as good as they run in the SGIs takes something.

    Apple won't be a computer for "graphic designers" any more. I'm telling you this because Apples computers where always last in the 3D development.
     
  16. Scottgfx thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2002
    Location:
    Fort Myers, FL
    #16
    I always thought the O2 looked like a bread maker.

    I just installed my Radeon 8500. Much faster OpenGL in Lightwave 7 than the nVidia GeForce3 I had. Just my O2 cents. :)

    I wouldn't see XSI being ported to the Mac as a bad thing, I just seriously doubt that it will ever happen. Everything I hear from my insiders tells me that Avid is seriously pi**ed-off at Apple over Final Cut Pro. While there are those Mac based Media Composer users out there, Avid continues to push the NT based systems and has converted over some major clients completely away from the Mac for video editing. But while Avid has the mindshare and the higher end of offline editing, the low-end (Read FCP) slowly becomes the high-end. :)

    Not only is it money taken away from Avid, it's the more important mindshare. Well, I guess the money is pretty important too, but in the post industry, buzzwords are everything! :)
     
  17. me hate windows macrumors 6502

    me hate windows

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2002
    #17
    they shouldnt buy alias/wavefront, there is no point
     
  18. thedude macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2001
    #18
    Please, no software snobbery here...
    Softimage is a cool program, so is maya, so are lightwave, max and the like. Each has their strongpoints and weaknesses. It isn't the software that makes the art its the artists that use them. A computer is a glorified pencil, no more no less.

    As for the whole Apple buyout, I can see how it would provide AW with some stability. The only thing that worries me about it is that apple needs to avoid the same problems that SGI has now. With pre-built NT machine prices at rock bottom, it would be hard for apple to compete if their price scheme is too high. (much like sgi now) The one thing that most people I talk to is that NT just isn't UNIX IRIX. I get an average of 2-4 crashes a day running maya on my 2000 pro machine. Whenever I use an IRIX box, that number goes to 1-2 every couple of WEEKS. As far as productivity goes, there's a trade off there. The older SGI machines crawl, but the NT's fly. Now wouldn't it be great if you could get the best of both worlds...A fast machine (g5) AND stability? (not to mention a computer that likes to play with others on a network).

    If apple can makes this work, there will be a revolution in the 3d arena. Now all we need is more software. (Renderman?) There's always something missing!
     
  19. Mr. Anderson Moderator emeritus

    Mr. Anderson

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2001
    Location:
    VA
    #19
    Some one dug this thread up from the grave. The whole rumor was based on Alias/Wavefront having a big, industry shaking announcement. Which they did, way back a couple of weeks, when they dropped the price of a seat to Maya at $1999. No one posted anything after the announcement because there was no reason to, the rumor turned out false.
     
  20. Geert macrumors 6502a

    Geert

    Joined:
    May 28, 2001
    Location:
    .be
    #20
    That is why Apple ran that Survey in Holywood industry...
    to check the needs, and I'm pretty sure that Steve will meet them in their request;)
    (quad G4, that graphics card we discussed lately...)
     
  21. eirik macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2002
    Location:
    Leesburg, VA
    #21
    3D not suitable for vector graphics????

    Mozez wrote that 3D is not suitable for vector [I presume this implies matrix... as well] mathematics. Well, I can't say I'm an advanced programmer that has written 3D apps. However, I can say that I have an extreme background in mathematics.

    Well, matrix mathematics is possibly the single most poorly understood yet most valuable tool that exists in real world applications of mathematics in general. For the life of me, I cannot imagine how 3D graphics would not be suitable for matrix operations. Quite the contrary, I should think that 3D graphics would best be handled by matrix operations!!!

    Maybe there's somethiing about the way that objects are defined in 3D applications, I don't know. But, yikes, this just screams for matrix operations.

    For those of you that do not know, AltiVec loves matrix operations more than anything else period. The more algorithms employ matrix operations the greater the benefit from AltiVec.

    Possibly, in reading Mozez's post, I missed some explanation about why 3D is not suitable for matrix operations. It would be understandable. His post is one incredibly long paragraph. I should think a proficient programmer would tend to write in a more structured manner. Is Mozez a programmer by trade?

    Well, while I am questioning Mozez's statement about vector [matrix] operations in 3D applications, I very much enjoy reading his posts. He's a valued contributor in this forum. However, I wish Mozez would write his posts in structured paragraphs: one or two grammatical subjects per paragraph with topic sentences each.

    Eirik
     
  22. eirik macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2002
    Location:
    Leesburg, VA
    #22
    no high-end 3D cards for Mac???

    In the thread regarding the rumor of Apple developing a dual-engine graphics processing unit, several posters stated that specialized high-end graphics cards costing thousands of dollars are not available for the Mac. I don't know if this is true or not.

    If so, is this not one of the reasons that the Mac is arguably a weak player in the 3D market, with or without 3D software?

    Eirik
     
  23. Scottgfx thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2002
    Location:
    Fort Myers, FL
    #23
    I would say that yes, the lack of good 3D display hardware has been a big problem for the Mac. Rendering speeds on the other hand have been quite good. My brother uses Lightwave on NT and we compare notes when we get new hardware. Usually whomever has the newest hardware wins the benchmark test. For awhile, I was the faster with my G3-733... That was last July.

    For about five years I've been chasing the fastest 3D display hardware for the Mac. Back in `97 I pre-ordered the iXmicro 3D card. When I finally got the card (many months late) It had fantastic 2D performance but worse 3D performance than software rendering. It's kind of sickening when the video card you paid $500 for, is selling for $79 just a few months later. iXmicro thankfully is out of business now.

    I also bought a 3dfx Voodoo 5 5500 for my B/W G3. At least that card played a mean game of Unreal Tournament. Sadly, the drivers were never finished and Lightwave never worked very well with it. Bye-bye 3dfx.

    Now I have a Radeon 8500 Mac. So-far, so-good. I just hoped I haven't jinxed ATI. :)
     
  24. Mr. Anderson Moderator emeritus

    Mr. Anderson

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2001
    Location:
    VA
    #24
    Re: 3D not suitable for vector graphics????

    While in school, I had an opportunity to create from scratch on Unix and programming in C, a 3D model viewer. I can say for a fact that it would not have been possible without Matrix Algebra. All the vector transformations are done with 4x4 matrices. Finding normals to a plane of 3 points, and vector calculations for raytracing all use it to.

    I would imagine all major packages use it, its just too fundamental.
     
  25. wchamlet macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 9, 2002
    Location:
    The hills...
    #25
    I've noticed that this post has remained dead for a few weeks, but I want to ask a few questions. Oh yeah, by the way, Hi. :D

    I've heard many rumors of Apple supposedly purchasing A|W. So many rumors infact, I am actually starting to believe them. But what really concerns me, is Apple computers are not really up to the standards of the Highend workstations that Maya use to be run on. So that got me to thinking. What do you think Apple is up to lately? I mean in regards to the Highend markets. Obviously there is a rack mount server coming out, so there is the answer to rendering farms, but what about the actual workstation machines? When compared to the PC Highend workstations, the G4's cannot compete with their speed. A quad processor P4 with a faster bus speed, runs much faster than the DP G4. Not to mention DDR ram, and better suited graphics cards for 3D.

    I'm of the mind that Apple has got something in the works for the Highend workstation. I don't know if it's a G5, bus speed increase, or quad processor motherboard, but I do know that I cannot wait until July to find out. :D
     

Share This Page