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I could have sworn that Maya was power animator first and LW was still LW at the time... color me wrong then! =]
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the technical history is a little, well confusing.
As you may have noticed, Maya has no 1.0 or 2.0 designations. The first version of the software to get numbered was 3.
Historically speaking you have Alias/1 and Alias/2 from Alias, and PowerAnimator from Wavefront.
When Alias|Wavefront merged to create Maya, both technologies were used, but the User-Interface was inherited from Alias.
Technically speaking the first release of Maya was Alias/3, given the project was started before the merger. [img]/images/graemlins/smile.gif[/img]
you know what gets me is how long Siggraph has been doing, just astounding.