Two surprising bits of news recently about Blender, the free and open source 3D creation suite as they've managed to secure some extra funding from two big names.
Firstly, it was announced on July 15th that Epic Games awarded them $1.2 million from Epic's MegaGrants program. Quite an impressive number and good to see a company such as Epic support open source software in such a way. They don't get it all at once though, it will trickle in over the next three years, to help with Blender's "Professionalizing Blender Development Initiative".
"Open tools, libraries and platforms are critical to the future of the digital content ecosystem," said Tim Sweeney, founder and CEO of Epic Games. "Blender is an enduring resource within the artistic community, and we aim to ensure its advancement to the benefit of all creators."
Additionally and also quite a surprise, is that Ubisoft have also joined in which was announced only today. Ubisoft has now become a "corporate Gold member" of the "Blender Foundation’s Development Fund" which will further help support Blender developers. On top of that, Ubisoft Animation Studio will be moving over to primarily using Blender as its main digital content creation tool and have developers contribute too. If you want to know more about all that, there's an interview on Ubisoft's website.
"Good news keeps coming" says Blender founder and chairman Ton Roosendaal, "it’s such a miracle to witness the industry jumping on board with us! I’ve always admired Ubisoft, as one of the leading games and media producers in the world. I look forward to work with them and help them finding their ways as a contributor to our open source projects on blender.org."
This is fantastic. Having open source software like this, that runs on Linux and is properly funded will only strengthen their position to providing awesome tools for everyone for free.