I am not a diplomat, and I will happily delete this public post if asked by the developers as I dislike being a part of controversy like this. It may come off as sour grapes to some but I'm trying to look at this objectively as a customer to avoid that tone. As a paying customer who has gotten to participate in using not so perfect evolving software, it is my right to chime in. This has after-all become about $$$$$ and an emotional response due to encouragement from Lumion developers for excited customers to help Lumion become a better program for the end-users. This can easily blur into a false illusion. Companies are about $$$$ after all.
That's a pretty cynical way to look at things. I don't think the Lumion team is all about the $$$$. I recognize that there are many more ways the devs could take advantage of us if they wanted to. The fact is that as Lumion users, we have it pretty good. Whomever thought they were never going to have to pay for additional content has been using too much Sketchup. There is no false illusion here. As an early adopter I knew I was buying into an incredibly cheap program for what I was given. I knew it was a developing program and at some point there would be an upgrade that would cost money. The devs never hinted otherwise.
Lumion wants users help, to make the program better and customers have to pay said company $$$$ to freely give the company tips on how to make the software better. I had felt what was cool about Lumion so far is the response one gets back from the development team on how to improve the software for end users. I know I have thrown out a couple of no-brainers on how to improve the software and they have shown up in updates. Borrowing from the tactics used by the company on customers I should have demanded 1000 credits for each suggestion (of course the whole credits thing did not exist when I got in so how would I know of the evolving scheme). Scaling of trees and objects - numerical sliders..... Just a couple of things I have suggested that are necessary to make the software useable. (Who has not benifited from these suggestions? - they were universal in need) You can look at my past posts to see these as factual statements.
Wow... Take a look at any other software forum out there. People get on forums to exchange ideas on how to improve their use of the program, usually with other users. I would be very impressed if you could find another piece of software whose developers are as active on thier forums as the Lumion team is on this one. As for being paid for tips, I see it as me telling the Lumion team what I want to see in the program and they give it to me (how cool is that?!), then I use those new features to make money. Since the release of Lumion, there have been several major and minor updates all in the span of 6 months, like a bunch of monkeys chugging away at typewriters working to pump out the perfect copy of Dickens. But why should we pay them? After all, they're just monkeys. By the way, thanks for your no-brainer suggestions. None of the other users ever mentioned any of those things. You can check everybody's past posts.
I have read practically every post in this forum.
Welcome to the club.
I will go out on a limb here and speak for many that have bought the program. If you disagree with this statement and you don't feel this does not speak for you then I understand and welcome the rebuttals. Every person that has bought this software is MOST interested in improving it and those who post in the forums want to help the developers get this software RIGHT. That is the number 1 item in everyone's book. Get the software right. Beyond all the cool additional effects, etc....get the base software right. If you get it right and listen to the users in the real world - everything will fall into place. The money will come. The software will dominate.
I am most interested in selling a product to my clients. Aside from a few bugs, the software was right from the beginning. It immediately allowed me to produce high quality animations at incredible speed with little to no learning curve. I was about to go crazy trying to get that out of Revit. Since I first purchased Lumion, the software has only improved. The Lumion team is listening to the users and everything is falling into place. The money = SP2 and V2 (monkeys at typewriters).
It appears there is a feeling of disingenuity/confusion from Lumion that is swelling with this latest software release.
I get the confusion part, but when has the Lumion team ever lied to us?
You pay to play! We all know that. Just how it goes right....Right? I know I mentioned a few months ago about being worried about keeping up with the pay to play scheme that software companies use to maximize profits when they are taking off from the ground and those who are in early either are appreciated by the software company or are discarded along the internet highway as they are priced out. I think people feel like they might already be getting thrown under the bus in purchasing software that is evolving and not quite right yet as it moves ahead onto bigger and better things - essentially leaving users who are trying to contribute in the dust (who have not even owned the software for a year - and it has changed all over the place in that year). Don't know that it is coming from people who always post in here or assist with the developers - they only know who speaks to them and helps them out.
How are you getting priced out? Has Lumion not paid for itself already? It has in my firm. And how are you getting left in the dust? The devs have incorporated your suggestions and in the 6 or so months the software has been public, it's basic operation has gone unchanged. Everyone who makes an informed decision about whether to buy Lumion should be aware that the software is undergoing constant development. Every piece of software is always undergoing constant development.
I was one of many who got duped by the VUE franchise boondoggle. Was exciting at first - but ended for me in total dissatisfaction and a feeling that ultimately I got ripped-off. I used it to some success but what a nightmare. I have had no hesitation in praising the Lumion team and thanking them and telling them how awesome everything is. But why should I - I paid for the software.
Looks like you're 0 for 2. Good thing Lumion doesn't charge a maintenance fee for extra support (VUE), then you'd be 0 for 3.
So as a paying customer - who understands how software companies build up a product and a consumer of these products - I had the feeling that there was something special about being a part of this development of the software and something a little bit different in the approach from the Lumion team. I had no problems throwing out advice to the Lumion development team about how to improve the software for end-users. As a practiced Landscape Architect and now back in school working on my Masters of Building Architecture, with over 15 years of computer modeling experience, I am Lumion's expressed main audience. Over the next 3 years I will be touching all the newest architectural software in existence and will throw it into Lumion for my visual outputs. I will be cranking out many many computer models over the next 3 years and 100's of students will lay their eyes on them. A lot of young designers will get to see the strengths and weaknesses of Lumion and will have the opportunity to be critical of it's flaws. But will I share with them what program it is? Or will I keep it to myself and tell them it is something else. Why should I spread the word?
I guess I just don't understand why you feel so burned, but you'll share because you want to be that guy.
So I got in pretty early of this Lumion experiment (it is exciting right) - feel like I have contributed to improvements from an end-user stand point (maybe the developers feel differently) - watched the product go on sale after I purchased it - watched my suggestions be added to the software - watched myself get priced out of some new features (which maybe I could help them improve some things in those also if I could afford them as a student now) - realize the reality that I won't get to have my work displayed on a Lumion highlight reel because I don't have all the cool new features - using a SP2 that is indeed a heavier program due to all the stuff I can't access as I dance on the boundaries of my current hardware configurations and can no longer open up previous models - damn.
Lumion didn't make you go back to school. You chose to make a change in your life at the same time this cool program came out, but don't worry, there is talk of an educational version. Congrats btw, it's a very hard sacrifice to make, speaking as a non-traditional (older) student. You probably realize all to well that the computer game (hardware/software tug of war) will never change so no point in complaining.
Don't get me wrong. I am happy that I have the software - it is cool.
But, now I have a clear picture and I can see myself as viewed from the company as purely $$$$. I suspected it - now its just a clear reality. Why should I help improve this software from a user stand point? it works for me - I can always figure out work arounds - stay away from glass reflections of 20' tall people in them (things like that). Other gaming engines will be around the corner. Why should I be loyal? Why not wait till LumionV3 when all the upgrades become standard? Each time I find a bug give me a 1000 credits. Each time I suggest something that would improve the software give me a 1000 credits. Each time it goes on sale and I didn't get in on a sale price give me a 1000 credits. Or rather I just won't participate and let others give away their time for free to a company that charges them to use it to improve it, that ultimately sees them as $$$$, and is not coming off as caring about customer loyalty as those who gambled with the company's product get tossed to the side as quickly as they jumped in. Who cares right? It is such a great program that everyone will use it.
It's just so cynical. I feel sorry for you and all the other pessimists out there.
Maybe this is harsh - but that is the gut punch I got from this.
I am not meant to be attacking anyone or any company - other than VUE
I want to see nothing but success for the Lumion Team.
Not intending to add to the piling on - expressing myself as a paid customer.
If I was rolling in the $$$$ I probably would not post as I would just buy the software and move on.
I still love the program. Best thing since sliced bread.
You don't act like it. I bought Lumion the first day it was released and since then I have been able to produce high quality animations in short time periods. Then I got the 64bit version for free. Then I got all my updates for free. Did you know that VUE charges for updates? From VUE 9 to 9.5 all you really get is some rolling clouds. I got rolling clouds, smoke, fog, water fountains, improved tonemapping, better translation controls, better color controls, faster framerates, better movie controls, etc. all for free. Now I want some extra trees, so I guess I'll realize how good I've got it and give the monkeys a treat.
Guess my reputation will go into the toilet after this post.
Not that I have one anyway.
Just speaking my mind - which people often don't like.
No, I'm not going to decrease your reputation.