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On 11/2/2023 at 9:32 PM, Thomahawk said:

So the one thing that is sure is that Affinity MUST include AI tools or otherwise it will be doomed. Who would still buy a car without power steering? 

Maybe an easy fix could be to include a plugin like Alpaca AI https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f4O07Zuy3uc

That is more of an argument to not include such plugin in Affinity. The video is even making the argument the plugin is better than Adobe's generative fill.

Instead, we just need the scripting/plugins API for Affinity. That is how Alpaca was made available for Photoshop and Stable diffusion for Krita etc. No company can keep up with the pace of AI development. Whatever they include will be obsolete almost by the time they ship it.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I didn't read the full discussion (16 pages is a bit much), but here's three points to consider:

1) Looking away (or making fun of the technology) does not help at all. People WANT it. And even Skylum (Luminar) already jumped, better: stumbled on the train.

2) Everybody who ever did some more complex image corrections will LOVE this new tool.

3) Serif will lose a major part of their customer base to PS and LM if they keep on ignoring reality.

Now for a possible solution ...

I read things like "Cloud" and "legal" ... Sounds like a real wrong approach. It's the approach PS and LM chose, but there's another solution, maybe better: local install.

If Serif provides a local installation of "Stable Diffusion" (most flexible AI solution today, also free to use) combined with a "safe" pre-installed model/checkpoint, disallowing nudity, also celebrity and artist fakes, they should be on the safe side: Images will be generated by the user's computer, not by a cloud service owned by Affinity. However, users could use other models/checkpoints different from the "safe" one (like URPM) at their very own discretion.

That way, there wouldn't be any cloud costs to be covered by Serif, also Serif would not be liable for naughty things users might do if they dare to download and install other models/checkpoints than the preinstalled and highly recommended one.

There's several more benefits, but I wish to keep this short.

Drawback: Users need a modern GPU, starting from RTX 2070 with 8 GB of VRAM and more, and about 30 GB free disk space. That's what I would call minimum requirements.

 

Think about it, correct me if I am wrong.

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Hey @Jörn Reppenhagen check out this interview with @Ash from september

Interview with Serif CEO Ashley Hewson _ Tidy (1).pdf

Tzvi 9_9

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16GB RAM (15.3 usable) 

Acer KB202 27in 1080p monitor

Affinity Photo 1.10.6

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Beta builds as they come out.

canon 80d| sigma 18-200mm F3.5-6.3 DC MACRO OS HSM | Tamron SP AF 28-75mm f/2.8 XR Di LD | Canon EF-S 10-18mm f/4.5-5.6 IS STM Autofocus APS-C Lens, Black

 

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I'm genuinely puzzled why all those smart folks who argue that "if Serif doesn't implement [insert your wet dream feature here] then they will go out of business in three, two, one" simply don't start their own company and make the big bucks themselves…? :D 

MacBookAir 15": MacOS Ventura > Affinity v1, v2, v2 beta // MacBookPro 15" mid-2012: MacOS El Capitan > Affinity v1 / MacOS Catalina > Affinity v1, v2, v2 beta // iPad 8th: iPadOS 16 > Affinity v2

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1 hour ago, LondonSquirrel said:

Only if the extra cost is worth it. In any comparison with Photoshop, price MUST be considered.

Yes, their major advantage is already lost. There are already free versions. No need to switch and pay for it. MS just now added it even to MS Paint in windows 11.

If you want selections combined with generative fill, then Krita has it for free. The reason Krita has it is because they have good plugin/extensions. Which continues to be my argument for Affinity. They are already working on it. It is the best path forward in this crazy rapidly changing landscape to simply allow integration with whatever will be coming.

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At one point it seemed like the whole graphic design/digital art world was jumping on team Affinity right before PS got Ai generative fill and Affinity had all the momentum. BUT, now there’s been an exponential shift towards adding some kind of AI to software apps that it just simply cannot be ignored. (I believe Adobe was actually concerned about seeing their users dropping them for Affinity at one point and jumped into coming up with something to stop this momentum so they released the first gen of ai fill). Luminar marketing has always kept them afloat by repackaging their app and adding things like AI Enhance which is nothing more than an auto correct on steroids. Then they kept building on it and added more AI tools. So point is we have arrived in the AI era and implementing it is unavoidable to stay relevant. I’m actually okay with Affinity not having AI tools right now in 2023 but they could at least make it a mission to overhaul the app after almost 10 years of no true major enhancements to the tools already there? How about a better quick select tool (it’s okay but could be better- auto select foreground, body, subject comes to mind) better Raw development, adding the tools to Designer that it still needs to be competitive (blend tool, auto trace-even free and cheap apps now offer some sort of tracing), a complete overhaul of the brushes engine to import PS brushes with more their setting. Add more options to the FX panel with also more settings or most that matter, like the bevel settings, contour options for better text effects, pattern overlay for a strong complete package of  text effects, a better blend settings UI, and so much more. So DON’T add AI for now but please make the app better in areas that it could be improved upon.

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16 minutes ago, evtonic3 said:

... a complete overhaul of the brushes engine to import PS brushes with all the settings or most that matter, like the bevel settings, contour options for better text effects, pattern overlay for a strong complete package of  text effects, a better blend settings UI, and so much more. So DON’T add AI for now but please make the app better in areas that it could be improved upon.

I generally agree as Affinity can't work on everything and if I need AI gen fill I can find it for free just as I use InkScape for autotrace. I'm assuming that since Affinity is already doing extensions/scripting support then AI will indirectly become available from that effort.

I just wish Affinity could focus on the defect backlog. I would become so much more productive if my defects would ever be fixed. I'm happy to see it seems they are spending some quality time with Publisher based on the number of fixes I see, but a lot of old bugs everywhere else could really use some attention.

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People frequently complain that Serif never announces future directions for the Affinity Suite. This turns out not to always be the case.

Quoting from the interview mentioned above by @tzvi20 that was published on 9/30/2023 in "Real Sound"

Ashley: We plan to release 2.3 by the end of the year. We cannot tell you about the specific functions that will be implemented at this time, but we are planning to provide a "cloud service" as a function that will be implemented in the future, which will allow us to share tool assets, color palettes, etc. across devices. It will be.

Additionally, there is a function using AI that we plan to implement in the future. In fact, we've been working on this for the past two years with a team dedicated to AI, and we're starting to see some features that we're excited about. I'm sure it will be a great product that will surprise all users.

We believe that we will be able to make some kind of announcement about either feature in the next 3 to 6 months. please expect to have fun and wait.

Affinity Photo 2.4.2 (MSI) and 1.10.6; Affinity Publisher 2.4.2 (MSI) and 1.10.6. Windows 10 Home x64 version 22H2.
Dell XPS 8940, 16 GB Ram, Intel Core i7-11700K @ 3.60 GHz, NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060

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3 minutes ago, Granddaddy said:

People frequently complain that Serif never announces future directions for the Affinity Suite. This turns out not to always be the case.

...

They need to better interact with the community through social media. They could really create excitement about their products if they did so. Many creators on YT quit promoting Affinity over the last couple of years citing specifically the lack of communication from Affinity and no future vision.

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1 hour ago, CM0 said:

They need to better interact with the community through social media. They could really create excitement about their products if they did so. 

Yes, but they also could create disappointment dissatisfaction, & hostility toward the company if for one reason or another something they said they were working on was not implemented in in their products at all or as quickly as people hoped for.

They also should not reveal too much about their plans to their competitors for what should be obvious reasons.

This is something all software companies have to be careful about.

All 3 1.10.8, & all 3 V2.4.1 Mac apps; 2020 iMac 27"; 3.8GHz i7, Radeon Pro 5700, 32GB RAM; macOS 10.15.7
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1.10.8; Affinity Designer 1.108; & all 3 V2 apps for iPad; 6th Generation iPad 32 GB; Apple Pencil; iPadOS 15.7

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16 minutes ago, R C-R said:

Yes, but they also could create disappointment dissatisfaction, & hostility toward the company if for one reason or another something they said they were working on was not implemented in in their products at all or as quickly as people hoped for.

They also should not reveal too much about their plans to their competitors for what should be obvious reasons.

This is something all software companies have to be careful about.

We can assume some level of competence in how to approach information sharing. Many companies do this just fine.

I do believe the new shorter iterations are at least a positive improvement. It allows for more input from the community before features are finalized in the release and quicker turnaround for issues to be addressed. It feels like Affinity is more in touch with the users with this approach and hopefully will continue with such process improvements.

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4 minutes ago, CM0 said:

We can assume some level of competence in how to approach information sharing.

Assume what level of competency & by whom? Years ago Serif quit publishing 'road maps' for feature improvements to Affinity precisely because too many users interpreted them as promises that items they mentioned would be implemented quickly & exactly how various users wanted/expected them to be, even when there was no consensus about that.

All 3 1.10.8, & all 3 V2.4.1 Mac apps; 2020 iMac 27"; 3.8GHz i7, Radeon Pro 5700, 32GB RAM; macOS 10.15.7
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1.10.8; Affinity Designer 1.108; & all 3 V2 apps for iPad; 6th Generation iPad 32 GB; Apple Pencil; iPadOS 15.7

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13 minutes ago, R C-R said:

Assume what level of competency & by whom? Years ago Serif quit publishing 'road maps'  ...

And yet they have just revealed two major items. AI ,scripting and other small details mostly to the praise of everyone. No matter what your complaint is about a company, that complaint comes with the assumption they can improve. I've worked in the tech industry for decades and have seen many decisions by executive management that later were reverted because it didn't work out as intended. Options are not simply binary choices.

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1 minute ago, CM0 said:

And yet they have just revealed two major items. AI ,scripting and other small details mostly to the praise of everyone.

But what has Ash actually revealed about their AI plans, other than there should be some news about that & (maybe?) the cloud server thing in the next 3 to 6 months? They have said nothing one way or the other about whether this will include, be limited to, or otherwise feature anything using generative fill capabilities, or any of the many other possible uses of AI that users may want or expect that to include like 'smart' auto-tracing of bitmap images, AI assisted naming or identifying of objects, or who knows what else.

There is even less known about their plans for scripting or when we might expect to see it in a beta version.

All we really know is they are working on these things, but we have known that about many if not most of them for years.

All 3 1.10.8, & all 3 V2.4.1 Mac apps; 2020 iMac 27"; 3.8GHz i7, Radeon Pro 5700, 32GB RAM; macOS 10.15.7
Affinity Photo 
1.10.8; Affinity Designer 1.108; & all 3 V2 apps for iPad; 6th Generation iPad 32 GB; Apple Pencil; iPadOS 15.7

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10 minutes ago, R C-R said:

There is even less known about their plans for scripting

There is an entire thread on scripting with demos.

 

10 minutes ago, R C-R said:

we have known that about many if not most of them for years.

No we haven't

BTW, you were previously complaining about revealing too much and now complaining about too little. :)

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3 hours ago, Granddaddy said:

People frequently complain that Serif never announces future directions for the Affinity Suite. This turns out not to always be the case.

Quoting from the interview mentioned above by @tzvi20 that was published on 9/30/2023 in "Real Sound"

Ashley: We plan to release 2.3 by the end of the year. We cannot tell you about the specific functions that will be implemented at this time, but we are planning to provide a "cloud service" as a function that will be implemented in the future, which will allow us to share tool assets, color palettes, etc. across devices. It will be.

Additionally, there is a function using AI that we plan to implement in the future. In fact, we've been working on this for the past two years with a team dedicated to AI, and we're starting to see some features that we're excited about. I'm sure it will be a great product that will surprise all users.

We believe that we will be able to make some kind of announcement about either feature in the next 3 to 6 months. please expect to have fun and wait.

Got a link to the article? Interesting!

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4 minutes ago, CM0 said:

There is an entire thread on scripting with demos.

Do you have a link for that? I have not seen anything about it.

4 minutes ago, CM0 said:

No we haven't

What specifically have we not known about them working on for years? Scripting support was first mentioned at least 4 years ago when they mentioned that they had not at that time decided what scripting language it would be based on.

8 minutes ago, CM0 said:

BTW, you were previously complaining about revealing too much and now complaining about too little. :)

I am not complaining about anything, just reiterating what they have said in the past about the reasons they do not discuss any specifics about their plans for the future.

All 3 1.10.8, & all 3 V2.4.1 Mac apps; 2020 iMac 27"; 3.8GHz i7, Radeon Pro 5700, 32GB RAM; macOS 10.15.7
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1.10.8; Affinity Designer 1.108; & all 3 V2 apps for iPad; 6th Generation iPad 32 GB; Apple Pencil; iPadOS 15.7

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6 minutes ago, Frozen Death Knight said:

Got a link to the article? Interesting!

https://realsound.jp/tech/2023/09/post-1446012_2.html 

Note that it is in Japanese. Someone posted a translated PDF version but I can't find the link to the post that has it at the moment.

All 3 1.10.8, & all 3 V2.4.1 Mac apps; 2020 iMac 27"; 3.8GHz i7, Radeon Pro 5700, 32GB RAM; macOS 10.15.7
Affinity Photo 
1.10.8; Affinity Designer 1.108; & all 3 V2 apps for iPad; 6th Generation iPad 32 GB; Apple Pencil; iPadOS 15.7

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The way I see it, scripting is going to be the best solution for implementing AI features. It would open the door to a lot of new possibilities for 3rd parties to utilise the Affinity ecosystem. Still, AI features are something the devs should definitely consider adding in on their own as well, since there is going to be enough demand for it in the coming years. As of now it is not going to be a make or break deal, since there are a lot of alternatives out there that can be used over what the likes of Adobe have to offer while keeping Affinity as the main place for editing images. It's important to have a plan for the coming future.

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On 11/14/2023 at 7:13 PM, CM0 said:

And yet they have just revealed two major items. AI ,scripting and other small details mostly to the praise of everyone. No matter what your complaint is about a company, that complaint comes with the assumption they can improve. I've worked in the tech industry for decades and have seen many decisions by executive management that later were reverted because it didn't work out as intended. Options are not simply binary choices.

I think the argument about the old road maps is kind of redundant at this point, yes. Serif's approach to announcing features and changes in V2 are much different from when they decided to scrap the road maps. We may no longer have a road map, but the transparency around development is a night and day difference, and for the better I would say.

The only thing I do wish they could do better is announcements done through articles like the one linked by R-C-R. It's not the first time I have read interesting announcements they've done in some article that I had to search up myself through a search engine. Their X/Twitter and YouTube accounts also have made interesting announcements which at least have been a bit easier to find. I hope they keep improving their communication channels, since I think they've been moving in a good direction as of late.

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15 minutes ago, Frozen Death Knight said:

 ... but the transparency around development is a night and day difference, and for the better I would say. ...

Yes, that was exactly the point I made above in another post. The new smaller iterative development is a very welcomed change. More interactive with the community of users. And yes, my same observation on the announcements as well. Would be great if they would post on social media.

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The link about scripting support makes it very clear that the demo is not how the Affinity suite will run scripts and plugins; that it is "all VERY early, like pre-pre-pre-alpha," there is not even any timescale for its release, & so on.

So about the only thing newish that is revealed about it is that in its 'pre-alpha' state it can run Javascript code. Better than nothing I suppose but the demos don't reveal anything specific about what we will actually be able to do with scripting when it finally makes it into Affinity, or how long we will have to wait for that.

All 3 1.10.8, & all 3 V2.4.1 Mac apps; 2020 iMac 27"; 3.8GHz i7, Radeon Pro 5700, 32GB RAM; macOS 10.15.7
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1.10.8; Affinity Designer 1.108; & all 3 V2 apps for iPad; 6th Generation iPad 32 GB; Apple Pencil; iPadOS 15.7

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