Blender gets even better with release 2.81
Following the fairly recent, epic 2.80 update, Blender has received another outstanding bump to version 2.81 adding more goodness to an already great list of improvements. There's a more intuitive outliner and pop-up file browser, a slew of new sculpting tools and much more. The update largely includes features planned for 2.80 but the extra time has allowed for more refinement and other helpful fixes as well.
- Greatly improved outliner with conventional selection features that are now synced with the viewport.
- File browser is now in a floating window with a more conventional layout and updated icons.
- Files deleted in the file browser are now moved to system trash.
- Powerful batch renaming feature with regular expression support.
- Complete sculpting overhaul with adaptive cursor, advanced masking and new brushes including pose, elastic deform and draw sharp brush as well as transform and mesh filter tools.
- Two new ways to remesh models: OpenVDB Voxel and QuadriFlow.
- NVIDIA RTX support has been added for real-time raytracing in Cycles renderer.
- Sophisticated Intel® Open Image Denoise based filter node added to compositor.
Those are just a few highlights, there's much, much more to this update. The breadth of these recent enhancements may leave the future looking a bit dull in comparison but they'll certainly make the wait for new features highly fruitful and enjoyable. The official release post covers the update in significant detail but there's also CG Cookie's review which delves into a lot of specifics from a pro user perspective that can really help those who found Blender cumbersome in the past.