With the massive recent releases of Blender 2.8x it is time to start looking towards the future and that is exactly what the Blender Foundation have been done. With a pair of posts to their developer blog addressing the upcoming future of Blender.
First is the announcement of LTS versions and with Blender 3, adopting a more standard numbering convention:
The first proposal is to do one Long Term Support (LTS) release every year. This release would be supported for two years with important bug fixes and updates for new hardware, while strictly maintaining compatibility.
A good reason to do an LTS now is the focus on fixes and patches of the past months. The next release (2.83) although big, will be relatively less experimental, thus a good candidate to keep supporting for a while.
LTS versions also will help to ensure that a project that started with an LTS version can be completed with the same version in a reasonable amount of time. Nice for studios with large projects, but also for add-on maintenance.
As well as details on the new versioning:
Along with this, I also propose to accelerate a bit our release numbers this decade.
This summer we’ll do Blender 2.90 (new particle nodes), and in summer 2021 the Blender 3.0 series begins! By then we will implement a more conventional release numbering.
I suggest to do minor releases (3.0, 3.1, 3.2, … 3.7) for two-year periods, and then move to a new major release. Blender 4.0 could be there in 2023 already!
Additionally there was some discussion on the “biggest projects” over the next year, the type of features you can expect to see in the next few releases of Blender. There was also some tentative discussions on upcoming User Interface changes from their User Interface Workshop.
Finally there is some unfortunate news about Blender founder Ton Roosendaal who is taking a bit of a break due to help issues:
Last week Monday night I was hospitalized with an acute immune system failure. It was critical and severe but quickly fixed up and diagnosed to be excellently treatable with common medicines. Because of my weak immune system I’m confined to a special over pressured area in the hospital, to prevent germs or viruses from reaching me. Basically it’s the safest place in Amsterdam now!
Last week I migrated all Blender Foundation/Institute operational tasks to Francesco Siddi. He will take over ongoing projects and communication for me until I’m back in April. I would appreciate it if everyone would respect my rest for this month. I can’t handle thousands of good health mails or personal messages now! Social media will do fine 🙂 I know you care!
Wishing you a quick recovery Ton! To learn more about all of the above be sure to check out the video below.