[Bf-committers] Blender Proceedings, proposal

Paolo Ciccone phciccone at gmail.com
Thu Oct 28 06:45:05 CEST 2010

Hi Ton.

I think that the idea of a "Blender Magazine" is great. Blender has reached,
IMHO, critical mass and the public at large is constantly clamoring for more
content and information. Especially of the "accessible" kind
I think that the idea of providing a periodical with high polish is a good
Having said so, I have to say that I disagree with a few key points in the

- 19 Euro for a magazine is a high price. I'm not sure it will be easy to
find buyers. I myself hesitate to buy any magazine that costs $6.00 (USD) or
  This is for established, general-purpose 3D publications. I buy a few book
every now and then, and they have to be really worth the money. The asking
   price for a Blender manazine, should be, IMHO, quite a bit lower than
- The title "Procedings" is a bit obscure. To myself and other people I
asked it gave the idea of a report about the meeting minutes, or summaries
of public
  events. It can definitely work against the goal of the publication.
Selecting something with a bit more "sex appeal" would help the sales.
- Printed format is a risk and it limits the distribution worldwide. If I
were in charge of deciding the future of a magazine/publication starting
today I would
  not think of printing it at all. Especially for a technical publication.
PDF/ePub with publishing on Apple BookStore and Amazon/Nook would be the
only means
  that I would consider. Selling the printed version and delivering the
electronic format for free would be economically akin to suicide. On top of
that I find that if I
  have a choice between printed and ebook, I buy the ebook all the time. I
can search it, a feature fundamental for any technical paper, I can have the

  publication with me all the time, together with all the other
books/magazine, and it doesn't require additional physical space.

Putting an emphasis on the eBook can also help in providing a format that is
more pertinent to Blender, by adding embedded movies that can integrate the
explanation of articles
centered around the topics of animation and post-processing/compositing.

On the plus side, I agree that a magazine which is professionally formatted,
with high-quality content and published by the Blender Foundation/Institute
would definitely be well received.

All said in the spirit of helping and providing what I hope is seen as
constructive criticism.

All the best.

Paolo Ciccone

On Sun, Oct 24, 2010 at 7:35 AM, Ton Roosendaal <ton at blender.org> wrote:

> Hi all,
> This was mailed to the bf-docboard list as well, but it's a good
> topic to get feedback on here as well.
> Here's an idea I have to get public funding via our community to
> increase the quantity and quality of documentation projects.
> "Blender Proceedings"
> - Magazine style and size, full color
> - 80 pages, quality paper, 200 grs cover
> - Regular issues, like 4 x per year
> - Contents available in wiki.blender.org compatible formatting and
> license
> - Printed versions being sold online, pdf (ebook?) freely downloadable
> Topics for a Proceedings issue can depend on anything we consider
> worth investing time in. Especially it can become a means for our
> active documenters (and new writers) to spend considerable time on a
> documentation project while getting a fee paid for it. I also consider
> to invite developers to participate in this, to get good technical
> (but readable for users!) docs.
> In many cases a Proceedings can be filled by multiple authors, they
> then just share the fees. An editor (and reviewer) should be found as
> well, who can get a mentoring fee.
> The name "Proceedings" has been picked to not present this as manual
> or tutorials, but to always strive for reflecting current development,
> or important missing docs for Blender. Issues can also be a report on
> activities such as the Sintel Open Movie project, or the full report
> on all presentations at the Blender Conference.
> To make issues somewhat attractive, artwork or galleries can be
> included as well.
> Bizzplan:
> - printing costs 4000 euro (1000 copies)
> - writer fixed fee: 3000 euro
> - mentor fixed fee: 500 euro
> - DTP design: 2400 euro
> With a sales price of 19 euro, it will need to sell a little over 500
> to get return of costs. My estimate is we can sell maybe a 1000,
> provided it's well designed and attractive.
> Profits then goes to financing the next issue. The better it works,
> the more docs!
> After doing a first issue, we can also evaluate it, and offer a
> subscription model to pre-finance it all (4 issues for 60 euro or so).
> Start shooting crits! :)
> Thanks,
> -Ton-
> ------------------------------------------------------------------------
> Ton Roosendaal  Blender Foundation   ton at blender.org    www.blender.org
> Blender Institute   Entrepotdok 57A  1018AD Amsterdam   The Netherlands
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