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Architosh Staff (info@architosh.com)
29 August 2001

 

RenderMan for Mac OS X? A Petition Warranted?

Over the years Architosh has received a notable amount of email regarding Pixar's RenderMan software and its conspicuous absence from the Macintosh platform. Why conspicuous, you ask?

Because, Pixar is Steve Jobs' other company and that makes Mac users quite aware of what this other company is, does, and how it does it. The fact is, while Macs play a pivotal part in the production of Pixar's famous movies, they do not run Pixar's highly acclaimed RenderMan software—despite the fact that at one time RenderMan did run on the Mac.

RenderMan for Mac OS X?

Many have asked, speculated and expressed frustration about RenderMan and the Macintosh. We continue to hear from time to time request for info on RenderMan on the Mac OS X platform. And with Apple making a big hoopla about Maya on the Mac and OS X as a platform for advanced 3D visualization, one has to seriously wonder. The question still remains, will Pixar ever port RenderMan back to the Macintosh? We've asked this question before, last winter, and did not like the answer. It was very direct and very much a no.

However a recent, new email from a reader suggest that Pixar may now have an open mind to RenderMan on Mac OS X and may indeed be watching the new platform's penetration in the high-end 3D market:

Greetings. I was wondering... Since Apple Computer has released their new UNIX-based OS X, can we expect a RenderMan/PR-RenderMan anytime soon? A simple "yes" or "no" in your reply will suffice. - Ed M.

And here is Pixar's simple and "not so simple" answer:

No.

Now, for a not so "simple" answer. We are obviously aware of OS X, and are investigating whether or not it makes sense to bring out a Macintosh product at this time. Our final decision will be based upon many factors, including customer demand, performance figures, ease of porting, available resources etc. At this point in time, we have not made any formal decision regarding a Macintosh product. - RenderMan Support, Pixar

RenderMan Platforms

RenderMan currently runs on a number of Unix's, but not the dominant Unix that will be Apple's OS X. Apple has made note of the fact that they are now the biggest supplier of a Unix operating system with OS X.

It stands to reason that the key basis for supporting a particular platform is all economics, especially for a company that has no emotional legacy with any particular platform. This must be the principal reason for Pixar's lack of interest in OS X, and despite that company's relationship to Apple, via Steve Jobs, emotional ties are a weak factor at best.

Regardless, most of us know that Steve Jobs would love for Pixar to produce its movies using Apple gear. That much is obvious. Think of the marketing opportunities, as you can do with the collaborated efforts between Apple and Alias/Wavefront.

If Pixar's decision is principally tied to economics, and if Apple is indeed the largest supplier of a Unix operating system, then eventually the economic issue could warrant attention: there will [eventually] be enough potential buyers. After all, isn't this the same market as Alias/Wavefront's Maya? Surely if Alias believes the Mac OS X market warrants a port then does this same crowd not interest the Pixar folks?

We believe it does. And Pixar's RenderMan and Maya are working more together all the time. So surely it must be just a matter of time then, no?

RenderMan is a Killer App

RenderMan is a killer app. Besides Pixar many 3D studios use it for all kinds of 3D purposes. If you want to see and connect up with some RenderMan users we know of a new site which features some of the power of RenderMan and many user gallery/examples images. And the next version of RenderMan, ironically or not, is going to be called PR RenderMan 10.

Helping to Determine Interest in RenderMan for OS X

We have run petitions for some time, helping to stir up interest in various software and to gauge demand. If you would like Architosh to put together a petition for RenderMan please send us an email. Hopefully we can help Pixar determine their course of action. Thanks.


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Mac3D: Reader Q: More help on Medical 3D on Mac - [Sep 4] New!

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Reader Q: is there a list of Mac 3D firms that support your site? - [Sep 4] New!

Mac3D Science Q: Mac medical scientist needs your 3D help! - [Aug 29]

Mac3D news: Illumenal.com is new multiplatform 3D website - [Aug 29]

Apple Conferences: QuickTime Live Conference - [Aug 29]

RenderMan for Mac OS X? A Petition Warranted? - [Aug 29]

Pixar's 3D software upgrade renamed PR RenderMan 10 - [Aug 29]

Strata 3Dpro training during Seybold, with free software offer - [Aug 24]

Mac3D & Film News: Mac user wins Adobe 'Digi' award - [Aug 24]

Mac3D news: A New LightWave 7 Book! - [Aug 24]

BPT-Pro & EXDFX-Pro, new CAD tools for Illustrator - [Aug 22]

Apple fixes QuickTime issue with Windows IE 5.5... - [Aug 22]

AppleSeminars: Managing your digital content - [Aug 22]

VectorWorks instructor needed at Endicott College - [Aug 22]

Strata and Electric Rain form Partnership - [Aug 21]

Mac3D: Quesa releases latest version 1.6d14 - [Aug 20]

FaceStation Heading to Maya for OS X - [Aug 20]

64-bit vs 32-bit processors, and other items on the Web - [Aug 20]

Siggraph Coverage & Latest News

Strata DVplus 5.0 released for the Mac - [Aug 17]

Siggraph: OpenWorlds demos X3D open standards technology - [Aug 17]

Siggraph: LightWorks previews sketch rendering technology - [Aug 17]

Siggraph: Notes from the show floor p3. - [Aug 17]

Siggraph: Notes from the show floor p.2 - [Aug 17]

Siggraph: Notes from the show floor p1. - [Aug 17]

Siggraph 2001 Exhibition, Notes and the Mac - [Aug 14]


Macworld Expo New York 2001

2001 Macworld NY Expo show reports - an index - [17 Aug] New!


Ultimate Apple Cinema Display now supported on PC's - [Aug 14]

Nemetschek delivers new VectorWorks Viewer App - [Aug 14]

Exclusive interview on VectorWorks for Mac OS X - [Aug 13]

Architosh Review: MacDraft 5 by Microspot - [Aug 8]

What you didn't know about GHz processors, and more...- [Aug 3]

Around the Web: New design Web site, G4, et al. - [Aug 3]

Coming Up! Review of MacDraft 5 and Special Interview - [Aug 3]

MacCAD: BOA to be OS X only in version 3.0 - [Aug 3]

MacCAD: HP Delivers OS X drivers for DesignJet's - [Aug 3]

MacCAD: BOA publishes first BOA Plane Talk newsletter - [Aug 1]

Acne's: Kirksey moves up to ArchiCAD 7.0 - [Aug 1]

Mac3D: VectorWorks SPOTLIGHT 9.0.1 ships - [Aug 1]

A reader comments on MO drives by Fujitsu - [Aug 1]

Shootout: G4 tower stacks up well against PC's - [Aug 1]

Nemetschek N.A. updates products, other news - [jul 31]

Keynote Predictions: Crystal Ball 2001 New York - [jul 18]

Architosh Firm Profile: Interview with Luminetik, 3D Macintosh Studio - [jul 17]

Architosh to Cover Macworld Expo - Notes - [jul 17]

Pre-New York Meditations on the Possible - [jul 17]

Architosh Feature Interview: Microspot Ltd talks Technical CAD on the Mac - [jul 12] New!

MacCAD news: Nemetschek initiates 2001-2002 Learning Tour - [jul 12]

ArchiCAD used for design of tallest residential skyscraper - [jul 12]

Mac3DNY.org renames and sponsors Teapot Awards - [jul 9]

Mac3D: Mac Cinema4D user creates masterful short film - [jul 9]

MacCAD: Free SPOTLIGHT Training by Nemetschek - [jul 9]

Quesa Group has QuickDraw 3D API on Mac OS X - [jul 6]

OpenDWG Alliance has Mac OS X code libraries available - [jul 6]

Microspot Sponsors Architosh Forum Prize Contest! - [jun 29]

MacCAD news: VectorWorks for Mac OS X news - [jun 29]

Tomorrow last day to get Electric Image (3D Toolkit) for $99 - [jun 29]

Architosh.com - What's Coming Up in the Near Future - [jun 29]

Architosh - Status Reports: Autocad, G4's and Other Info - [jun 29]

Mac3D market needs new Wildcat II graphics card - [jun 28]

MacCAD: Nemetschek NA finalizes VectorWorks 9.0.1 update - [Jun 28]

AEC Newsletter CAD/3D platform poll, go show Mac support! - [jun 26]

OS X news: Autodesk seems to have taken a fancy to dock... - [jun 22]

Mac3D news: Japanese 3D tool, HexaSuper 2 for Mac - [jun 22]

VersaCAD 2001 Mac shown at AEC Systems - [jun 22]

Apple not at AEC Show, inexplicable or not? - [jun 20]

MacCAD news: VectorWorks LANDMARK is now officially shipping - [Jun 20]

MacCAD news: ArchiCAD to implement National CAD Standards - [Jun 20]

Mac3D news: 3D Nature intros Z-Buffer Compositor for LightWave 6.5 - [jun 19]

MacCAD news: Cigraph ships two new ArchiCAD plugins - [jun 19]

Graphisoft intros ArchiFM 7 WebServer in Europe - [Jun 19]

ArchiFM WebServer to be announced by Graphisoft - [jun 15]

Online Design Tools site counting Mac visitors - [Jun 15]

MacCAD news: EON to work with ArchiCAD/GDL - [Jun 15]

MacCAD news: new interactive 3D technology headed for OS X - [Jun 15]

Mac3D news: Get ElectricImage 2.9 for just $198 now - [jun 13]

Mac3D news: Hot new tools from Japan need US attention - [Jun 13]

Mac3D news: TGS/Eovia offer Amapi 3D v4.15 for free - [Jun 13]

Mac3D news: dvGarage intros new 3D Training Kit - [Jun 13]

Dr. Bott's DVIator for ADC-displays now shipping - [Jun 13]

Mac3D news: POV-Ray for Mac OS and OS X - [jun 12]

Macs ousted for CAD Lab at Sacramento High School - [jun 8]

Revit attacks Autocad market, actually good for Mac users? - [jun 8]

Q: Need for Macintosh CNC Milling Software - [jun 8]

MacCAD news: Interstudio announces DigiCAD 3D 6.0 - [jun 6]

Macintosh Facilities Management software options - [jun 6]

MacCAD news: Apple seminar on new ArchiCAD 7.0 - [jun 5]

Map Resources updates site with new map finding facilities - [Jun 1]

Microspot ships new MacDraft 5.0 CAD program - [Jun 1]

Q: Need for Mac Facility Management software - [Jun 1]


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