Thank you to a thank you

I received an email from a fella called Shawn Faherty the other day saying this:

Hey Gary,
Just wanted to say nice job on the tutorial in 3D World about the push pins.  I was really excited to read the pages but so very turned off by all the scripting it took.  I play around with Houdini and your example is something I’m working on right now and is so much more intuitive and straight forward building procedurally.  Does 422 every use Houdini?  Sadly, most studios don’t but I’m hoping that changes by the time I make a jump into a CG career.  Thanks for listening.
Shawn Faherty (Cambridge, MA)
Oddly enough, I can’t seen to get back to his return address, it not seeing to like being replied to, so if you are going to find this and read it, Shawn, I’ll put here what I sent out as my reply.
Hi there, Shawn, and thanks for liking the Q&A
Yup, Houdini is a far more organised system for completing something like the pin matrix, but I couldn’t find the button to build a box in Houdini, let alone set up what I did in Maya.  Scripting is the only way to do it without going into the API and wrtiing plug-ins and I can’t do that.  Give me time, and I’l get round to it, though.
We only use Maya here at 422 Manchester, coupled with afx and fusion for grading and compositing in our department.
But Houdini is used in more places than you think, especially in the US of A.  Rhytm and Hues are very big on it, as are The Orphanage and Asylum along with Sony Pictures too.  You could do very well if you keep at it.
Great to hear from you, and good luck for the future.
Well, I just thought I’d put that up, seeing as it is the only way I might get back in contact with him
You can find the Q&A of the pin matrix on my website now, if you’re interested.
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