I shopped around a lot in the past 5 months as I've wanted to get back into 3D modelling for quite some time. Given my day to day life is Microsoft, I needed a non-Microsoft hobby - mainly to keep me partially sane.
I began to research what software out there can cater to my needs, in that i have a few years of old skool 3D modelling behind me, but didn't want to drink from the firehose again. In the end, I settled on Maya simply due to the communities and massive amount of supporting learning information centred around it.
That and there is a XAML Plugin for Maya - who knows, this may come in handy down the track.
One thing also occurred to me was that I didn't really care about Platform choice. In that I own both a PC and Mac but in the end, platform wasn't a high priority for me. I often wonder at how the new generation of designers of tomorrow shop around for their software or technology to adopt.
Does platform play a significant role? If so why?
Learning is also going to be a challenge, I've decided to head down the 3D Cartoon path as for me this is where the most fun surely is to be had, but it's also the easiest path to choose. Making 3D models realistic is extremly hard, and not for novice modellers.
How did I come to this conclusion? research and advice and it's interesting to see how people like myself chose learning paths like "Cartoon or Realism".
It's all interesting as you see, I look at this entire experience and think to myself - what do our customers face when adopting Silverlight or WPF. How could I improve this experience?
I'm in the right team now to make an impact on that question, just know that being a designer is many things and the hardest challenge we all face isn't about which platform the nominated software exists on, but how do i learn it and how many will support me in such a quest.
All I want is to be one day scouted by Pixar and I first need to execute on creative vision, technology philosophy be damned.