What holds yourself/studio from adopting Houdini more?

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180 posts
Joined: March 2013
The title has nothing to do with Marketing guys, you're missing the whole point.
A huge percentage of the online noise about why people find houdini hard to use comes down to their way of thinking.

Every time one of these threads pops up, you are guaranteed to get houdini peeps literally telling you about nodes that do
what you say is missing, because you haven't bothered to read to Docs/Release notes. Or it's complaints about the
HDA/OTL/it should have this, only to again be shown how easy it is to wrap up something and explaining that is where the
power comes from. Being able to take low level nodes and build tools that would require C++ and pyQT knowledge in Maya, etc,
all with a drag and drop UI and zero coding.

This is what is meant by that tongue in cheek HIVE title.
It is not saying you are stupid, but that the approach you are using to interact with Houdini can be stupid.
I don't think sesi needs to make any apologies for making an app that is this flexible needing to have a certain
"mindset" in order to use it without frustration.

Are there things that could be better? Absolutely. No question.
But what I routinely see in these conversations is the Artist's frustrations/observations can be largely driven from
simply using houdini the wrong way. Yes it's a hard program, and there are six ways to do everything, but it's not
like there isn't a wealth of free masterclasses and presentations to help guide you to using it in a better way.

Matt Ebb's presentation from a couple years ago is a perfect example. He covers often overlooked things like
simply having your network constructed in a way that it isn't cooking data more than once for example.
That one alone is something I have helped many newer users deal with. It perfectly highlights the "stupid" in that it's
not houdini that is making something run slow, it's how you built your network. I totally get that it's part of the
learning curve as to what is the best way to construct something, seeing as you are able to construct it any way you want.
The answer to that is, to take some time to read and think about how the program works, check out those masterclasses and
presentations, and over time you will adopt workflows that don't frustrate the heck out of you.

I'm not lying, I'm writing fiction with my mouth.
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151 posts
Joined: May 2017
i do not personally care what the title says, because i know perfectly well that i myself am not stupid

i am pointing out that the title is obnoxious, and if nothing else hurts the image of Houdini community
https://twitter.com/oossoonngg [twitter.com]
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Joined: April 2022
What holds back artists, decision-makers, tools from using Houdini?
Comfort? Complexity? Price? No Adoption runway? Stubbornness?


An artist/manager who built their career by being hot-shit with Maya will avoid going way-hay back to being a nub with another program, especially if its fundamentally different.
In the case of managers, you can demonstrate how much money Houdini will save, but the pitch will come undone with one question: "who will manage it?". Personally seen this many times over the years, always frustrating.
The real enemy in the above case is the (stupid) use of incumbency as an artist-retention device, so not much Sidefx can do about this... besides flinging FX licenses and talented students and independents; hopefully trigger a future wave of adoption. We've seen this already with Apprentice, but Blender is now surging where Sidefx needs to be.

Another thing that might help is focusing development on actual artist tools instead of big-studio workflow fluff. We've witnessed the horror of TOPs and LOPs being laid with much fanfare while we still can't model without manual cleanup, can't save a fuckton of time with lapped mapping, can't preview shaders properly, can't do roto reliably, can't do 2d tracking... list goes on and on. This is very concerning as it seems like Sidefx have retired/pigfarmed their engineers and are now just focusing on sales.
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