Published: Wednesday, 21 February 2018 11:38
Darren Chilton is the current manager of Thea Render and Evolve products. Please find below some details about him along with some updates on the upcoming version.
Q. Please introduce yourself and your role for Thea Render.
I am Darren Chilton, Program Manager for Thea and Evolve products. All that really means is that I do my best to stay out of the way, and remove as many roadblocks as possible, so the rest of the team with the real talent can do what they need to do. My background is in Industrial Design. I graduated from the College of Creative Studies (CCS) in Detroit, MI with a major in Transportation Design. After working for a number of years in Altair’s design studio, I had the opportunity to transition into the software development side of the company. This began with the Evolve product and now includes Thea products as well.
Q. Thea Render has been a recent acquisition for Altair. How do you find working with the developer team?
One of the key aspects in any acquisition is the relationship between the two companies. Our relationship with the Thea team began well before the acquisition, and ultimately increased our interest in bringing the two companies together. The expertise, talent, and passion of the Thea team were obvious, and merging their team into Altair proved to be a natural fit. The addition of the entire Thea team has been fantastic, and I look forward to what we will be able to accomplish together in the future.
Q. What is the expected course of updates for Thea Render?
There is always a transition period to work through with any acquisition. We are now in a position where we are all working efficiently toward a major release of all Thea products. Moving forward we will settle into following Altair’s quarterly release cycle.
Q. More specifically, when can we expect the next major update of Thea Render?
We are working diligently on the balance of content, with the required development time. It is still too early to pinpoint an exact date, but we are pushing to try and have a release mid-summer this year. The plugin products are slightly ahead of this timeline with a release coming around April.
Q. What are the new features that we expect to see in the next update?
Updating the user interface is one major area of focus for all Thea products. We are working on making the UI scalable, to be more intuitive for new users, and more efficient for more experienced users. We are also adding new features such as OpenCL, interactive and object-based light positioning, denoising, tone mapping, support for file types such as STEP, IGES, X_T, 3ds, 3dm, etc... More details will be shared as development progresses.
Q. Are there any plans to support more integrations?
Initially, we had to make some tough decisions and scale back the number of products we were delivering to ensure an appropriate level of quality and support was being delivered. Once the dust settles and we get back into consistent release cycles we will certainly be looking to add more integrated products into our lineup.