A farewell to jdhill, (the man who makes maxwell and rhino friends)



Looking at the Maxwell forums today (unable to sign in) I saw that the great @jdhill is moving on from making the plugin that made me fall in love with Rhino and Rendering.

I just thought I would express some appreciation for what I have consistently thought of as the best material controller inside of rhino. The previews, real scale, the tight integration with relatable terminology has consistently made rendering a pleasure.

Thanks JD!

Here is a classic rendering from when I was at my deepest in Maxwell.

(Wim Dekeyser) #2

Thanks for that, Aaron. I often find myself thinking of the times when JD was a regular on the old newsgroup. @jdhill, thanks for those many years with terrific support!


Thanks much for the kind words guys, they mean a lot to me. Having been a Rhino person even before becoming a Maxwell one, I’ll surely still be around here… and likely quite a bit more than before, as I have had a few Rhino-based ideas knocking around in my head for quite some time, now.


I would also like to thank Jeremy. Until the middle of the twenty-tens serious rendering was an extremely complex artform, it generally meant fiddling with countless esoteric settings with no real world equivalents. What worked on one scene or camera angle likely failed in closely related scenarios. Computer power was a limiting factor, one needed to cheat and cut corners practically everywhere. CAD users couldn’t create their images inside their Nurbs modeller, one needed to export meshes to 3DSMax, Maya and such, to at all get access to the good stuff.

Maxwell, which appeared in Beta in 2004 worked like a physical camera. The first published test images blew me a away and best of all: One could recreate them – the engine worked reliably for anyone with a basic understanding of photography. And for more than a decade it was JD who made this Tech accessible directly inside Rhino.

The quality of Plug-Ins is often measured by its fit to the concepts of the host-application: The closer, the better. I applaud Jeremy for not even trying to take this route – the Rhino eco-system at that time clearly wasn’t – and I have to say – still isn’t quite there. JD’s Maxwell Plug-In was a complete new development and it had things to offer which simply weren’t doable with native means. Maxwell ran in a separate process from the beginning – rendering therefore never blocked further editing. All Maxwell Editors were non modal and drag and drop-aware a decade ago. Changing the tiling of maps in a dozen slots in four different layers in one go? No problem at all. Slick, time saving features of this kind made his tool a joy to use.

Thank you + All the best Jeremy – we are already curious what you have got under your sleeve for Rhino :o)



desk #861 no longer occupied… that’s very sad to hear : (

One of the most helpful and friendly people on Maxwell forums. Would be interesting to learn which other render company snapped him up…

After initially purchasing Maxwell during its beta so many years ago now, and having had it come to occupy the center of my life ever since, the time has finally come for me to move on to other things, and let others take over where I am leaving off; NL will provide information on the road ahead in due course.

For my part, I will always feel privileged to have had the opportunity of working with such a bright and passionate group of people, and fortunate to have made some of the best friends I will ever have, while doing so.

Lastly, and most importantly, I wish to offer my sincerest thanks to those who have taken the time to post bugs and suggestions in these forums over the years, patiently helping me to improve my plugins; my admittedly idealistic hope is that they have been able to contribute in their small way to making your lives easier, and your work more enjoyable.


(Gustavo Fontana) #7

He says it right here what’s he’s up too: https://www.simplesoftwaresystems.com/. It sounds pretty cool. I wish you the best JD!

I’d love to see this evolve into a scripts/macro manager where you can share/deploy scripts, tools and toolbars to multiple users across a team. Right now the way Rhino is [not] handling this is really limiting and makes sharing of tools/assets near impossible. Except for all of us who are super Ned’s and find the current system bearable and somehow useable.

I wonder what’s up without Next Limit’s Maxwell development. I always liked the render quality and the integration seemed pretty good (still for nerds only, so not scalable to mass adoption) but the render times and licensing approach were unacceptable. So I can’t imagine they are doing well in the market with this product, so maybe they are sun-setting it?



Thanks for the input Gustavo, I can definitely see where you are coming from. This plugin has some little hint of what you suggest, with its global macro facility; for simplicity, that uses a directory in the user profile, but it would be possible to make it point to a user-defined location, like perhaps somewhere on your office network (though that does not touch on everything you suggest). Anyway, sometime soon I was going to make a thread about it here, so let’s pick up this conversation at that time, and see what can be done.

And Holger, many thanks for your kind words my friend, and many more, for the invaluable feedback and assistance you have always given me, over the years.