Down jackets: Argentinean animated film made with Blender

The history of Blender, the software used to create Down jackets, flying adventures already has a place in the history of computing. Not only because of his extraordinary abilities, but, above all, because of the way he survived certain death.

Blender is a program to create scenes and animations in 3D, that is, the type of film we know from Toy Story o Finding Nemo (although other tools were used for these titles), and was born in 1995 as an internal application of the Dutch design studio NeoGeo. Its author, Ton Roosendaal, chose in 1998 to distribute the program free of charge, as NeoGeo had no intention of selling it, and established the NaN company to advance its development. Then, in 2002, NaN went bankrupt. The thousands of people who used Blender saw how the bankruptcy had left the source code (the recipe) of the software, which was for version 1.8, among the assets seized from NaN.

Faced with the catastrophe, Roosendaal asked the user community if they would be willing to pay for the source code, so that Blender would not die. The answer was a resounding "yes." The price imposed by the creditors was 100.000 euros.

When Roosendaal began his online fundraising campaign, now common on sites like Wikipedia, many laughed at his naivety. However, it took Free Blender only seven weeks to raise the money. Far from what some cynics pointed out, Ton did not run away with the check, but took it to the creditors, rescued the Blender and signed it under the GPL license, making it free software and returning it to his user community. Since then, Blender has not stopped improving and today it is going for version 2.49 ( ).

La peli Down jackets It was created with a modified version of Blender, adapted to the peculiarities of the project. Now, how is it that the Argentine studio Manos Digitales was able to change the program? Did they also have that legendary source code? Exact. Not the same, given the passage of time, but the current Blender recipe. This is how free software works: programs are distributed, sometimes even sold, with the recipe included. This kind of license is the same that gave rise to the now well known Linux ( and .( ). It's called the General Public License (GPL), it was created by Richard Stallman in 1989 and has changed the landscape of the software industry in the last two decades.

Seen in | La Nación

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