It's never too late to graduate — Hey I'm a poet, and I don't know it.
As I mentioned in a previous blog posting on Labs retirements versus graduations, technology previews are not intended for production use. After all, they're still in the early preview stage. They are in their infancy and are not fully baked. We are realists and recognize that some customers use them at their own risk. Technology previews are like taste tests at malls. We let people take a sip of Pepsi and a sip of Coke and tell us which one they like better. Regardless of which one they prefer, we are not promising to deliver a lifetime supply of soda. Sometimes people hate the taste of both!
We make technology previews available via Autodesk Labs so people can give us feedback. Most customers try them on test projects. If the technology preview works for them - great. If it does not work for them, no harm/no foul, since the customers are only playing with the technology on test projects. Since technology previews have an end date that is published at the onset of the technology preview, customers try them on projects that end before the technology preview ends. Technology previews have a specific end date so no one confuses them with perpetual functionality that is associated with a product offering or subscription service. In fact, technology previews are offered for free to Subscription customers, non-Subscription customers, and educational users alike.
When the previews end, Labs has no way to re-activate them. The code has a hard-coded time-bomb in it that causes the tech preview to stop working on the prescribed technology preview end date. So even if users got their hands on the original installer, the code would not work. As such reactivation or extension is not part of the Labs process.
In the case of Project Basejump for AutoCAD Map 3D / AutoCAD Civil 3D, that technology has graduated to the Geolocation functionality that is available in the AutoCAD 2014 family of products. Check out this video:
Like other features of our production applications, that functionality will improve over time (e.g., ability to print the maps) — most notably thanks to the feedback we garnered from the Project Basejump technology preview. And one of the main things we learned from Project Basejump was that it wasn't scalable to enough users the way we had built it and licensed it. We are grateful to all who participated.
Graduation ceremonies are alive in the lab.