Nvidia joined the Blender Foundation Development program

Nvidia became the last major technology company to support the development of de the open source 3D application "Blender", becoming a Corporate Patron from the Blender Development Fund. The Corporate Patron award, which represents a contribution of at least € 120,000 per year, will allow to hire other developers who will work full time for the development of Blender.

The exact amount of the donation is not reported, but according to the statement of the representatives, the funds will be spent on the remuneration of additional developers. New hires will be involved in working on core Blender components and maintaining quality support for NVIDIA GPUs in Blender.

In a tweet, Blender said that

“NVIDIA has joined the Blender Foundation development fund at the Boss level. This will allow two other developers to work on core development for Blender and keep NVIDIA's GPU technology well supported by our users. Thanks to NVIDIA for the confidence in our work! «

As a reminder, In mid-July, Epic Games also joined the Blender Foundation, donating $ 1.2 million (through a three-year extended payment) as part of your MegaGrants program. Endowed with a $ 100 million envelope, it aims to support game developers, business professionals, media and entertainment creators, students, teachers, and tool developers using its Unreal engine. Engine or enhance the capabilities of open source tools.

"Having Epic Games on board is a big step for Blender," said Ton Roosendaal, founder and president of the Blender Foundation. “With this grant, we will invest heavily in our project organization to improve code quality integration, coordination and best practices. As a result, we expect more taxpayers from the industry to join our projects. "

Before the grant, the Blender Development Fund was € 37.538 / month, almost doubled by the contribution from Epic.

A week later, Ubisoft joined the Blender Foundation Development Fund as a Gold member. (€ 30,000 per year). The studio has published an interview with Pierrot Jacquet (Head of Production at Ubisoft Animation Studio) to explain why:

“Blender was, for us, an obvious choice given our strategy: it is backed by a strong and committed community, and it is associated with the vision conveyed by the Blender Foundation, making it one of the most scalable DCCs on the market.

Besides that, it is an open source project. This allows us to contribute to its development by joining as corporate members and sharing with the community some of the tools that our dedicated Blender team will develop. We like the idea that this mutual exchange between the foundation, the community and our studio benefits everyone in the end.

Other corporate sponsors contributing the least to the Blender Development Fund include Intel, developers Ubicalu and Canonical. The fund also has more than 3.000 individual donors.

Nvidia's contribution to the fund (The Blender Foundation tweet does not give an exact figure, but at this level the company must give at least € 120,000 per year, which brings the total to more than € 82,000 / month) According to the Blender Foundation, this extra money

"It will allow other developers to work on core Blender development and keep Nvidia's GPU technology well supported by our users."

Ton Roosendaal, President of the Blender Foundation, said:

“We have been working very well with the Nvidia staff… for many years. I am very happy to see this consolidated by an affiliation to the Development Fund «.

Nvidia also contributes to the development of Blender in a practical way, after writing the Optix backend for Cycles, Blender's graphics rendering engine, which will be integrated into the next version of Blender 2.81.

The backend enables hardware-accelerated raytracing on Nvidia's RTX graphics cards, Blender's benchmark scenes offer 30-100% faster rendering on a GeForce RTX 2080 Ti compared to the older CUDA API. Nvidia.

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