Product Manager Steve Forde shares his thoughts on After Effects and the motion graphics/visual effects market.
SUPER excited to announce that I get to share a stage with Steve Wozniak, Rob Legato and Vince Brisebois at NAB this year.
I think we are going to have some real fun talking about the future of technology and creativity with two of the most brilliant minds in their respective fields. In case you have been living under a rock – Steve Wozniak helped create something called the personal computer when he co-founded a little company called Apple. Steve is now the Chief Scientist at Fusion-io, and will be talking about a huge advance in technology that will impact our entire industry.
Rob Legato just won his second Academy Award for Visual effects this year for the fantastic Martin Scorsese film – Hugo. Rob will be discussing how he feels these types of advances in technology will fuel the next generation of film and creativity.
Vince Brisebois and myself will be talking specifically about those advances and how you can use them. I’m also killer excited because it will be the first time in public that I get to explain what I believe to be one of the biggest advances to Adobe After Effects in over a decade.
If you are going to NAB – you will NOT want to miss this.
Here’s the link to check it out:
Before I have an ‘Occupy After Effects’ movement on my front lawn – I wanted to provide some clarity on the decision we made, and why we made it. For reference:
First off – this decision was not made while we chomp our cigars with feet on desk counting cash. It was a legal requirement that came in at the 11th hour of CS 5.5 for which we had no capability to rectify in the timeframe (and still have reliable / stable software). It’s that simple. No conspiracy. No cash grab. Simply making sure we are playing by the rules and not breaking the law.
Did we like it? – hell no. Are we doing something about it? – hell yes. Can I tell you what that is? – unfortunately – not at this time. (isn’t this fun?)
We cannot disclose what we are doing about it as we would also be breaking another set of financial and legal rules that every public company in existence MUST follow – not just Adobe.
Again – it is not the answer I would like to give – but it’s the truth.
What I am really happy about through all this though are 2 things:
1. People care enough to let us know when they think we are doing something wrong.
2. The render engine sure gets a LOT of use!
Therefore – please understand the current licensing issue for the render engine is not what we want, and is not some conspiracy to make a few more bucks. That we are exploring ways to get to a viable solution sometime in the near future that gets back to an easy way to deploy the render engine – while still meeting those pesky legal obligations.
Wanted to do a shout out to 2 companies that have really been going all out in terms of their workflows with AE. In September, Autodesk released a new compositor link feature for AE that works with 3ds Max. What blew me away was it can create a link between the two applications, so if you make a change in one application, you can see the change in the other. Check out:
A few weeks ago, Maxon, the makers of Cinema 4D came out with an update to their plugin for AE which allows you to literally create a .c4d file from within AE. Combined with the ability to make a .aep within Cinema 4D – you have great interop when jumping back and forth between the applications.
What this means? Any method that can streamline the process of going from an idea to what you see on the screen, irrespective of tools is paramount in my book. Both companies produce GREAT products. Check it out.
Adobe’s Todd Kopriva jotted this down before he heads out for a much deserved break. He mentions the top feature requests we receive and some thoughts on what we are doing / have done with them.
We have put together an EXTREMELY short survey (2 questions!) to get your feedback on the value of AE CS 5.5. This is a really important tool for us to measure your opinion on the value of After Effects.
We will draw for 2 free copies of CS 5.5 Production Premium – so be sure to leave your name and email if you want to get in the draw.
Thanks from the entire AE team!
First – I am definitely not trying to pass the buck here. This decision rests purely with us, and I want to make it clear as to why.
If you are unknown to the problem, AE CS 5.5 introduced the requirement for adding your serial number if you wish to use the AE render engine that is included with every install of After Effects. With previous versions, you could install that render engine on as many workstations as you wish, just as long as you had purchased 1 copy of the full version of AE.
Here’s the rub. As of CS 5.5, we are now required to pay a royalty on every install of After Effects – ANY version (that is not a trial) that can render out any of these licensed formats. Now you can see the dilemma.
As an aside – this is why most other tools must charge for their accompanying render engine.
Therefore, a legal obligation is just that – an obligation. To correct this, we must restrict the render engine to the license agreement of full AE. This means you can install a single license on 2 workstations – render engine OR full. I know this is not necessarily what you want to hear, yet we will commit to investigating alternative solutions for a future release.
[ Update: Instead of responding to all your comments individually - please check out part 2 of this blog post. -S ]