Summary: “Reprise presented a solution with support for all the platforms we required, and an SDK which gives us a lot of options. The latter factor is what we appreciate the most about RLM. It is very small and requires no external dependencies. It just works. And the SDK is very open, enabling our developers to customize the license manager exactly the way we want it.”
Increasing the productivity of professional animators
Craft Animations develops a suite of plug-ins called Craft Director Tools (for Autodesk 3ds max, Maya and Viz). Our software enables 3d-animators to record vehicle and camera animations in a very efficient way. Craft Director Tools is based on a new innovative approach for making 3d-animations. Instead of having an animator make all keyframes manually (a common approach which takes a lot of time and effort), the animator can simply steer the objects in real-time. The animation is automatically generated by an advanced simulator.
Our main customers are from the visualization and entertainment industry. Our products receive a lot of attention in Hollywood and many animation studios are currently using our tools in their workflow. But our products are also used widely by auto manufacturers and defense contractors, as we have very advanced tools for animating cars, helicopters and other vehicles. Generally, any company that uses visualization can benefit greatly from Craft Director Tools.
Craft Animations was founded in January, 2006 and the first modules of Craft Director Tools were released in March, 2006. But the technology had been in development for several years before and began as a master’s thesis by our founder Luigi Tramontana.
A competent professional animator can make approximately 8 seconds of animation per day. Craft Director Tools can produce the same result in a couple of seconds. This is possible because the animator no longer needs to animate each individual component (such as chassis, wheels, suspensions, flaps, rudders) making them all interact with each other, but only needs to steer the object manually. The details and behavior are then generated by the simulation.
Selecting a License Manager
We started out with another license manager which had support for only the Win32 platform.
We support two license types currently: full and demo licenses. The demo licenses are activated by an internal license key and communicate with our master server. Full licenses can either be activated by files or by activation keys. We also plan to support floating licenses in the near future.
When we came in contact with Reprise, we were already looking for a replacement for our license manager. We were planning to port our software to other platforms and our current license manager only supported the Win32 platform. There were also some internal limitations in that SDK which forced us to search for alternatives.
Reprise presented a solution with support for all the platforms we required, and an SDK which gives us a lot of options. The latter factor is what we appreciate the most about RLM. It is very small and requires no external dependencies. It just works. And the SDK is very open, enabling our developers to customize the license manager exactly the way we want it.
RLM appeared to be stable from day one. Due to the company’s fast pace of innovation and unusually receptive attitude toward suggestions from customers, Reprise Software offers us an the opportunity to contribute to and even take part in its product development.
RLM fulfilled all of our license manager requirements and we have received good support from both the sales and development departments at Reprise.