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LabVIEW subscription model for 2022

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@alexis1245 wrote:

Hi,

I was reading this forum and a question came to mind.

 

First of all, I would like you to know my situation. I'm currently working at a company where about 80% of the projects are done in LabVIEW. I've been working here under a practice contract for a year. This company taught me everything I know about LabVIEW. I enjoy developing projects with LabVIEW, but I don't see myself staying at the company I'm currently working for. I finished my studies a few months ago (I was studying and working at the same time). I've just read the first 10 pages of this post, so I haven't reached the end and don't know if NI has made any changes regarding the subscription model or what their future plans are.

 

What I'm wondering is, as a really new programmer, is it worth it for me to keep learning LabVIEW, or should I move on to another company and continue programming and improving in what I learned (JS, Node, PHP, web stuff) ?

 

 

 


Just to show another path which was done: I left academy in 2018 (it was a research institute where I built experiments mainly with NI HW and developed SW in LV, plus performing experiments, then reporting to the project financiers). I think I started to learn LV in 2006 when i started my PhD studies, so lets say beside some little C language, I was using LV for about 12 years.

Then I have changed work place in 2018, and started to learn C#/.NET. I find it very powerful as a general language, and we manage very complex projects with this tool (UIs with WPF and Winforms). Also, lots of Python, our data scientists mainly use Python (we integrate Python via scripting or recently moving toward gRPC to handle cross-language/-SW communications).

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@Blokk wrote:

@alexis1245 wrote:

...

 

 


...

Then I have changed work place in 2018, and started to learn C#/.NET. I find it very powerful as a general language, and we manage very complex projects with this tool (UIs with WPF and Winforms).....


If you aren't using measurmeent studio (maybe you are?) What do you use for all your widgets/controls?


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Please join the conversation to keep LabVIEW relevant for future engineers. Price hikes plus SaaS model has many current engineers seriously concerned...

Read the Conversation Here, LabVIEW-subscription-model-for-2022
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@WavePacket wrote:

@Blokk wrote:

@alexis1245 wrote:

...

 

 


...

Then I have changed work place in 2018, and started to learn C#/.NET. I find it very powerful as a general language, and we manage very complex projects with this tool (UIs with WPF and Winforms).....


If you aren't using measurmeent studio (maybe you are?) What do you use for all your widgets/controls?


I do not use Measurement Studio, neither NI hardware. What do you mean about "widgets/controls"? 

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Like nice graphs, numeric controls, listboxes etc. 


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Please join the conversation to keep LabVIEW relevant for future engineers. Price hikes plus SaaS model has many current engineers seriously concerned...

Read the Conversation Here, LabVIEW-subscription-model-for-2022
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@WavePacket wrote:

Like nice graphs, numeric controls, listboxes etc. 


Ah, i see. Well, you have obviously much more options compared to LV. Using either Winforms, or WPF, etc., you have numerous UI options for graphs, controls, etc. We also develop own "User controls" to better suit our needs, but there are lots of MIT licensed nuget packages which are capable to do much more than LabVIEW and much faster, and with better looking. 

I really like for example the ScottPlot nuget (very cool progress recently, the new version moved to SkiaSharp from System.Drawing.Common which is a huge improvement in performance too; https://github.com/ScottPlot/ScottPlot ). I once developed a live video viewer with it 🙂 Uncompressed raw bitmap stream via Ethernet, coming in from HW at 24 FPS, Bitmap size: 1626 x 1232. Scottplot can render update the Bitmaps with an FPS around 130-140 FPS! 🙂 Full zooming and dynamic menu compatibility. If someone is interested, i linked my test video, it is an optical camera view over an AFM cantilever chip, and I show features like moving the sample stage under the camera via mouse clicks.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aMeiItafg3k 

For 3D plotting things I like to use https://github.com/helix-toolkit/helix-toolkit nuget, very nice and easy to use, under WPF. 

For simple listboxes, numeric controls, etc, there are much more options, and via data binding you are much more flexible in programming, compared to LV...
 

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But to clarify what i think, LV as a product has the use cases where it can really shine. When it is about designing flexible UIs, then your pick is definitely not LV, but i think like 90% of the project cases, it is totally enough what UI capabilities LV can offer. 

 

To be more accurate, even programming nice UIs using WPF, Winforms or other desktop based tools are getting more and more outdated nowadays. Modern applications often get web based UI front ends. Ok the reason is also that, it is really difficult to find programmers with good WPF or Winforms skills nowadays, and much easier to find web developers...

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And apologies, in my previous posts i went a bit offtopic 🙂

In 2018, when I started a side project beside my main job, with a small family based business, we reviewed the cost of LabVIEW licence including AppBuilder option. I would have been the single developer. The price was just so high for this small family based business, it was just not an option. Ok, the HW side was custom made microcontrollers, and lots of ethernet and serial devices (so not specific NI HW things). Since I was a CLD that time, I would have been happy to continue to develop in LV, but it was just not economical. So I jumped to the "dark side" (a fellow forum member used these words that time 😄 ), and started to develop in C#/.NET. 

I am not familiar with business and licencing matters too much, but I feel a "tiered pricing" would make LV more competitive. So the license price would be based on the buyer's yearly revenue, or other metrics. Rich players would pay more, smaller, like family based businesses would pay much less. The recent cost of the SW just does not make it competitive to use it instead of other languages, especially if the project does not include or not many NI HW products (so no need for DAQmx things, etc.)...

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@Blokk wrote:

And apologies, in my previous posts i went a bit offtopic


Thanks for that 🙂 And thanks for the clarification.

 

I hope Emerson will pick this little rant up. It shows that people really like to use LV. But especially for smaller companies, pricing is a huge hurdle.

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25+ years long fan of LabVIEW. Move to Emerson looks to be for the better! See the last posts in subscription model thread.
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@Blokk wrote:


I am not familiar with business and licencing matters too much, but I feel a "tiered pricing" would make LV more competitive. So the license price would be based on the buyer's yearly revenue, or other metrics. Rich players would pay more, smaller, like family based businesses would pay much less. The recent cost of the SW just does not make it competitive to use it instead of other languages, especially if the project does not include or not many NI HW products (so no need for DAQmx things, etc.)...


Even if you use NI hardware, adding DAQmx (or NI-VISA) to a .Net application is not that difficult. Sure if you insist on .Net Core (aka .Net 6 or newer) you currently have to do a bit more than just installing the drivers, as you need to do your own Interop interface, but it is about as complex as interfacing any binary DLL to .Net with Interop or Python with ctypes or LabVIEW with the Call Library Node. Some basic understanding of how data is transferred in memory is needed but the rest is simply lots of tedious work. Especially the DAQmx API is huge so if you want to interface the whole lot you are in for a lot of work.

In reality however, if you only want to use one type of DAQ hardware, the number of APIs you need to interface with is usually pretty small and the job to interface to them is hardly a lot of work.

Rolf Kalbermatter
My Blog
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@beuvink wrote:

@Blokk wrote:

And apologies, in my previous posts i went a bit offtopic


Thanks for that 🙂 And thanks for the clarification.

 

I hope Emerson will pick this little rant up. It shows that people really like to use LV. But especially for smaller companies, pricing is a huge hurdle.


I hope too.

Actually offering significantly cheaper LV licenses to small businesses could be future "gateway drug" for these entrepreneurs: if they grow, they might start to buy more NI hardware if the project justifies it. Moreover, why not change the policy even for HW products? Giving significant HW discounts for small businesses help them adapt to NI hardware and grow faster. Then if they get bigger, they will be happy to pay the full price...

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