Love for McNeel

For whatever reason, I feel like I’ve been seeing a lot of negativity and incivility on this forum lately. I won’t name names, but it seems like many users come here to vent or yell at McNeel employees, demanding this or that feature, bug fix, or functionality change. I think valid issues, presented in a civil manner, are totally welcome here, but it seems like nothing is going to change the tone of the Discourse (pun intended).

I’m not proposing any fixes — the guidelines already cover how things should be, and of course if we all followed that it would be great (and most do!) — instead, I’d just like to take the time to say a great big thank you to the incredible team at McNeel. Maybe a little positivity and love will serve to balance out the occasional nastiness in some small way :slight_smile:

Rhino is an incredible piece of software. It’s easy to be precise, to be fast, to explore fluidly, to model complex objects, environments, and systems. Basically everything you can do exists in parity across buttons, menus, command-line options, and API access (with few exceptions) — this means it’s easy to explore and discover new features, and it’s also easy to become fast and fluid with the tools. Immense customizability with aliases, workspace preferences, and so on, means you can really shape Rhino into the creative tool you need as a designer.

Critical business decisions — like remaining a private company rather than being beholden to shareholders, commitment to public WIPs, releasing software when it’s ready rather than on some arbitrary deadline, deep and consistent engagement with users through personal messages, events, and visits — are also a big part of why Rhino is such a great product. Sure, nobody’s more excited for GH2 to come out than me (seriously, nobody) but I’m willing to wait because I know it’s gonna be great.

Speaking of Grasshopper… man, now that’s a genius piece of software. I could write a whole book about why it’s brilliant. It opened up a whole generation of people to computational thinking, and I know my life and career would look pretty different today if Grasshopper hadn’t totally re-configured my brain. I know of no better environment — even today, 12 years after its first release! — for the translation of architectural and geometric logic into code. The UI is so thoughtfully constructed and clever (ok, the learning curve might be a little steep) that it has continued to impress, surprise, and delight me for the decade I’ve been using it. It remains an essential tool for my professional work as well as my creative practice.

I’m also really pleased by some of the newer developments in the Rhino ecosystem — things like Rhino for Mac, Yak, RhinoCompute, and Rhino.Inside open up new frontiers and make me excited for the future.

I could go on gushing, but let’s leave it at this: I have so much love and esteem for the folks at McNeel for the work they do building amazing software and fostering such a great community. Over my career I’ve talked to so many people working in and around design and computation… and I hear genuine love for Rhino and GH more than any other product or tool. So keep up the good work, and if the haters are ever getting you down, don’t lose sight of the rest of us out here who truly, genuinely, love what you’re building. :heart:


I don’t think so :upside_down_face:

All the love for McNeel, keep going up.


:heart: :heart: :heart:

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Hi Andrew,

Well said, thanks for sharing your thoughts and feelings.

I’ve always felt privileged being able to almost exclusively use Rhino to earn a living. It’s a joy to be part of this community of positive human beings trying to make a better world and help each-other out.

Over the almost 2 decades that I’ve spend here the negativity has come and gone, I guess much like in all communities. Never was it much but at times it was very prominent and hard to dismiss.

With the explosion of new visitors and members the past years, it’s not unexpected to get more negativity. It’s part of human nature and culture to have frictions like this.

As long as the community keeps a balance by being able to help new members find their way in how to participate, it won’t likely get much worse. However it should always be an option to express whatever thoughts and feelings arise from using Rhino, this should not become a place of fan-boys and fan-girls only. Because as much as I love Rhino, there is still a whole lot of things that are annoying as **** if you don’t know how to work around it. This community is one of the pillars that Rhino is build on, not so much because of the praises but more so because of the questioning, wondering and occasional rants.

Thanks again for sharing!



Let’s be realistic here, instead of basting in fanboy-ism!
Rhino is a software product, McNeel the developer, and most of us paying customers. As it is a product in the free market, McNeel should be able to deal with a couple of dissatisfied customers - entitled or not -, and I’m sure they are.

Rhino is overall a great piece of software in its niche and not too expensive, but not perfect at all. I’m speaking from the perspective of a Mac user, and feel like it is still not that great of an experience (and I’m using it a lot). There are lots of improvements that could be made. The overall performance is not on par with other software that does similar things, the UI is not bad, but it looks kind of dated, overall version 6 is not a well rounded experience.

The truly great and powerful thing about Rhino is the active community! This sure is a great place to seek out help about all kinds of CG-related things, even beyond the McNeel software, but it’s also not immaculate.
All the people that don’t collect a salary from McNeel and offer advice, help and share ideas, I raise a toast to you guys!!!


I believe it’s totally possible to be realistic and critical while remaining civil and friendly. The proof is that I have been around this community for more than 20 years, and it has always been so (with some relatively rare exceptions).

If you look at the way our national leaders have begun to behave in public - especially since 2016 - with epic name-calling, insults and personal attacks, it’s easy to think that this is now the norm and that it’s acceptable in here like everywhere else. It’s not. I will continue to try to contribute to keeping this place as one of the most civil, friendly and helpful places on the 'net.

And yes, huge thanks to McNeel for hosting this extraordinary community and their contribution no only to the software development, but also for going the extra mile/kilometer to help their users to the best of their ability - even if the users’ responses are not always so polite.





I never said we shouldn’t criticize the product, and I never said it was perfect. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with valid complaints/issues — even the occasional rant! This post is not to say “don’t do that!” (well, as long as “that” is civil) — it’s just to balance things out with some positivity, because to me personally, Rhino/GH/McNeel are more than just a software product/developer — they’re the artists of a whole ecosystem that has inspired me and shaped my career. I also find that the PEOPLE of McNeel are uncommonly kind, responsive, helpful, and passionate about the product, and it can be easy as a consumer to lose sight of the fact that people are actually behind the imperfect-but-good thing you hold in your hands. So I want to say thank you to those people. I’ll request new functionality and rant and complain in a different thread.


On a lighter note…

I heard a story about an older Scottish musician that was asked to give some general advice to younger musicians.

He said, “Dinna be a dick”.
Good advice.


Let’s keep civility up and fanboism down! :call_me_hand:


I just love that McNeel has refused to convert to a subscription model.

One of the many reasons I use Rhino, Grasshopper and RhinoCAM rather than competing Autodesk products is that I like being a customer better than being a hostage.


flagged! @Helvetosaur be consistent!


Word Andrew! All what you say is spot on.
Rhino is awesome, and the developers should just be very proud of themselves.
Just ignore the whining :thinking: I mean why whine at someone who is doing a good job, eh?
You also made some great plugin stuff Andrew, thanks!


Hi Andrew,

In one way GH was a total failure. It never achieved what it was originally intended to do which was to be a history editor, instead it became a tool for design by digital cookery. It’s really just a spread sheet executing command scripts. Just because you hook up with wires doesn’t mean it’s better. You can do quite a few things using command scripts and send keys from Excel some things you can’t do in GH.

And this is why McNeel although like a relative we still love them we can’t just let them go on failing because we can see their potential.

When people complain they have a real reason for that.

McNeel needs to realize that there is a major flaw in Rhino and they cannot keep building on that.
The flaw is that it takes too long to retool a design. History needs major work only by improving this can rhino become efficient for design change.

The best tools to work with are the ones that can be altered by history, revolve is a really good example, all other tools that build from curves need to have this level of interaction. Curves the way they are edited also need or should have an option for history.

Also the major flaw of not being able to move your history objects is a joke making this command useless what the hell were they thinking. This brings me to the point of where all these other areas are also never improved, or in my mind are pretty much half baked tools that don’t work well and thus make me annoyed with the lack of progress by the developers. In order of Importance…

Fillet surf (interface improvement that Jim mentioned should be implemented)
SDS modeling (McNeel can’t even achieve the level of a 100 dollar program like silo.)
Block manager
Material editor (which looking at the future can not be used correctly with cycles in it’s current implementation.)


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For me the computational difference between what you understand by history in Rhino and by digital cookery in Grasshopper is, ultimately, how the user interacts with the geometry. At some level they are equivalent, as any history system you imagine will need a graph of processes and connections between them using an input and outpus scheme, whether or not it is hidden to the user. All design in Rhino are also an algorithm, a topology of functions, but does not support well to implement a history manager because (I suppose) it forces a huge change in the old Rhino code (someone correct me if I’m wrong please). Why such a sacrifice if GH already does it? The problem is that GH needs to sacrifice the direct interaction (with the mouse) on the geometry to guarantee the immutability of the data*, but it allows concatenating editing processes in a stable way. So from my point of view, GH has not failed to be a history editor, but it changes the modeling logic, and consequently, its usefulness, that doesn’t have to be the same as in Rhino.

*Any data that goes from one component A to another component B is duplicated, it is a new instance, not a reference, so if component B modifies the data, component A preserves the previous state of the data.



You’re absolutely right. Rhino, with GH and all the different programming interfaces, makes for a very flexible and capable “lab desk”. I never thought I could produce so much crazy stuff as I can with this platform. And it keeps getting better.

And the community, and Discourse. What can I say? I have not seen anything like it before. Incredibly helpful and competent people. A complex tool needs a community like this.

The winers… hm. I didn’t see much wining in the last few weeks. But it use to be only a few individuals. Yeah. those few names.

But I really do agree. Thank you McNeel staff. All of you. And thank you @andheum, I use some of your plugins almost everyday.

Ignore those who think too much of themselves taking themselves too seriously. Reminding myself that… :

Proverbs 17:28: Even a fool, when he holdeth his peace, is counted wise; When he shutteth his lips, he is esteemed as prudent.

:zipper_mouth_face: :face_with_hand_over_mouth:

// Rolf


Hello -

Why do you think this?



It is not about the message itself but how the message is packaged. Sometimes the package is ugly and even empty.

And people should not be that shallow to look only at the package!

Something that has truly impressed me since I started visiting here is just how frequently devs (either from McNeel or a plugin) will quickly respond to questions by writing a script that solves the problem in a button click. That’s an unnecessary level of support that I haven’t seen in many other places. It isn’t, and will never be perfect, but the amount of time put into trying to understand the many weird things we do with Rhino and helping out is pretty amazing.