COLLADA 3D Asset Intermediate Standard Accelerates Adoption and is to be Extended for 2D Vector Graphics

Many leading authoring packages add support for COLLADA; Specification to be extended to add support for vector graphics assets such as fonts; Documentation update released; Conformance Tests nearing fourth quarter release; COLLADA Contest Details Announced

7th August, 2007 – SIGGRAPH - San Diego, CA – The Khronos™ Group is pleased to announce that industry momentum of the COLLADA™ standard for 3D asset interchange format continues to grow rapidly with significant standardization activity and widening industry adoption.  Many authoring packages have now added support for importing and exporting COLLADA assets including: Adobe Photoshop CS3 Extended, Agency9 MADLIX, Anark Core Platform, Caligari trueSpace 7.5, DAZ Productions DAZ|Studio 1.7, E Frontier Poser 7, Google Sketchup 6, NVIDIA FX Composer 2, Omegame Menus Master, Remograph Remo3D 1.3.1, Terathon C4 Game Engine and Wordweaver DX Studio 2.0.4.  In addition the Khronos COLLADA working group has initiated extending COLLADA to include 2D vector graphics assets, such as high quality fonts, enabling authoring of user interfaces and scenes that seamlessly mix 2D and 3D assets in a unified geometry and effects environment.

“COLLADA answers a tremendous industry need,” said Stephen Collins, CEO of Anark Corporation. “The challenge of maintaining an industry-wide standard is enormous in light of the growing number of users and the complexity of the data they are exchanging. At Anark we have experienced this problem first hand as our clients struggle to exchange mission critical product design data and other 3D graphics assets. We developed the Anark Core platform to enhance design, collaboration and communication applications, and we chose COLLADA as a key ingredient in our product strategy. This provides our customers with a dependable exchange format that they can count on.”

“COLLADA has been instrumental in making FX Composer 2 the power house shader tool it is today. By enabling a tight coupling of 3D scenes, materials and shader effects, graphics developers and technical artists can create complex surface and full-scene renderings that can be interchanged with game engines and other digital content creation applications,” said Sebastien Domine, director of developer technology tools at NVIDIA.

2D Vector Graphics Assets in COLLADA
The COLLADA UI initiative within the COLLADA working group is extending the COLLADA standard to support high-quality, Bezier-based vector graphics, such as fonts, on an equal basis to 3D geometry. This will enable the seamless authoring of scenes and user interfaces that mix 2D and 3D assets with all the power of the COLLADA format, including animation, skinning, inverse kinematics and programmable shaders.  Khronos invites any company interested in this initiative to consider joining Khronos to participate in this and any other Khronos working group.

“Omegame has joined Khronos to help bring enhanced 2D vector assets to COLLADA, leveraging more than ten years of UI design experience,” said Nicolas Perret, associate managing director and Technical Director of Omegame. “COLLADA UI will create the foundation for authoring mixed 2D and 3D assets in flexible and powerful ways that have not been possible before.  For example, being able to import a high quality font and use it with advanced geometry and shader effects will open up many new application and user interface opportunities.”

COLLADA Conformance Tests and Documentation
The COLLADA working group is planning a fourth quarter release of the Conformance Test Suite for COLLADA 1.4.1.  The COLLADA Conformance Test Suite is a complete GUI and scripting framework that integrates testing methodology with authoring tools and rendering applications and contains up to 500 COLLADA BASIC test cases.

At Siggraph, the Khronos Group also announced the availability of the updated Release Notes Revision B for COLLADA 1.4.1.  The new release notes include highlighted corrections and additions to the current release note for COLLADA. The topics covered include transparency, animation, lighting, splines, and skinning.

“As COLLADA continues to evolve and include more features such as physics and complex shading effects, it is critical that applications keep up and be tested accordingly,” says Christian Laforte, President of Feeling Software.  “For that reason,” he adds, “Feeling Software has collaborated with Khronos to develop the COLLADA Conformance Test Suite. The CTS will ensure that COLLADA-compliant tools are tested rigorously and objectively. Already, more than 300 test scenes have been developed and verified across popular COLLADA-compatible tools like ColladaMaya, ColladaMax and the Feeling Viewer.

COLLADA Contest
Khronos today also announced details of the COLLADA Contest that will enable and encourage open source COLLADA conditioning programs to be written to interface with the COLLADA Refinery and uploaded onto Sourceforge.  The contest is intended to encourage a growing body of open source conditioners to enable any developer to construct sophisticated processing pipelines to condition content for diverse platforms.  The COLLADA working group will select outstanding uploads to be awarded prizes on a regular basis.  Further details are at www.ColladaContest.com.

See COLLADA at SIGGRAPH 2007, San Diego; August 7-9 2007
Developers and members of the press are invited to visit the Khronos Booth #227 to see COLLADA demonstrations by Khronos Group members and to attend COLLADA events:

  • COLLADA BOF & Party:- August 8th; 2:00-4:45PM Room 2
  • COLLADA Crawl Contest: August 7-9; SIGGRAPH Show floor

More details at http://www.khronos.org/news/events/detail/san_diego_siggraph_2007/

About COLLADA
COLLADA is an XML-based asset interchange format that enables the use of diverse digital content creation tools to author sophisticated assets for use by 3D applications, including animation, shaders and physics effects.  COLLADA represents authored data in multiple forms, enabling the transformation of assets as they journey from content tools that use high-level descriptions to run-time applications that require optimized, platform-specific representations.  The COLLADA specification, documentation, and sample code is available on the Khronos.org website at http://www.khronos.org/collada

About The Khronos Group
The Khronos Group is a member-funded industry consortium focused on the creation of open standards such as OpenGL®, OpenKODE™, OpenGL® ES, OpenMAX™, OpenVG™, OpenSL ES™, OpenML™ and COLLADA™ to enable the authoring and acceleration of dynamic media on a wide variety of platforms and devices.  All Khronos members are able to contribute to the development of Khronos specifications, are empowered to vote at various stages before public deployment, and are able to accelerate the delivery of their cutting-edge media platforms and applications through early access to specification drafts and conformance tests.  More information is available at www.khronos.org.

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Khronos, OpenKODE, OpenVG, OpenMAX and OpenSL ES are trademarks of the Khronos Group Inc. Web3D and X3D are trademarks of the Web3D Consortium. COLLADA is a trademark of Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. used by permission by Khronos. OpenGL and OpenML are registered trademarks and the OpenGL ES logo is a trademark of Silicon Graphics Inc. used by permission by Khronos. All other product names, trademarks, and/or company names are used solely for identification and belong to their respective owners.

Khronos Group Gains Diverse New Members

A rich variety of companies join Khronos to drive opportunities for accelerated graphics and media in worldwide markets; Standards-based ecosystem strengthened by member companies providing consultancy services around Khronos APIs

7th August, 2007 – SIGGRAPH - San Diego, CA – The Khronos™ Group is delighted to announce that Anark, Antix, ArcSoft, GraphTech, Mentor Graphics, SoftBank Mobile and SRS Labs have joined the existing Khronos membership to help define open standards for the authoring and acceleration of dynamic media on platforms ranging from embedded systems such as mobile phones to high-performance desktop and workstation systems.  All Khronos members are able to join any working group to contribute to the development of Khronos specifications and conformance tests - further details are at www.khronos.org/members/.  Additionally, member-company Ardites announced a consultancy service offered to any company interested to accelerate the development of products using mobile Khronos APIs.

“At SIGGRAPH 2007, Ardites Ltd announced a software consultancy and service model to support hardware vendors, device manufacturers and application developers to effectively utilize the Khronos APIs. With profound experience in key technologies and mobile multimedia ecosystem challenges, Ardites is capable of reducing the time-to-market, support multiple operating systems and improve the performance and security of the end product. By providing training, designing, integration, implementation and testing services, Ardites complements and strengthens the Khronos ecosystem,” said Jarkko Kemppainen, business and competence unit manager at Ardites.

“Khronos is a forum for industry-leading companies to cooperate and create open standards that drive commercial opportunities for our members and the wider industry, and we welcome our new members that bring expertise and key market insights to help ensure Khronos standards continue to evolve to meet market needs,” said Neil Trevett, president of the Khronos Group and vice president of embedded content at NVIDIA. “Our new members include mobile carriers and vendors for 3D authoring tools, mobile middleware and operating systems from all around the world; illustrating how rich-media authoring and acceleration is becoming vital to multiple industries.  Also, an increasing number of member companies such as Ardites and Futuremark are offering consultancy, development and benchmarking services for Khronos APIs – all very vital in encouraging a broad range of products to rapidly and effectively use Khronos open standards.”
“OpenKODE has been developed to provide an essential consistency of service across an increasingly diverse range of mobile and other connected digital devices. We look forward to our highly experienced team at Antix taking an active part in the further development of this important standard,” said Tim Renouf of Antix Labs and the specification editor for OpenKODE.

“We have seen tremendous growth of Multimedia applications on the mobile handset in the past few years. With the introduction of standards like OpenMAX and OpenKODE and their gradual adoption by mobile chip and hardware companies, software companies are liberated to focus energy on product innovation and creativity rather than on lengthy integration with different multimedia hardware,” said David Cao, ArcSoft Vice President of Mobile Business. “The work of the Khronos Group helps to streamline mobile phone development so that different well-segmented software expert companies can work seamlessly together and time-to-market can be significantly reduced. We look forward to seeing an industry-wise adoption of these standards.”

“Khronos is elevating the bar in how standards are defined and created by taking into consideration the entire developer ecosystem,” said Peter Ostrin, CEO, GraphTech Computer Systems.  “They’re enabling innovation through the economic support that comes from being able to deploy new technologies across the widest range of platforms, and we are excited to join the Khronos Group as a Contributing Member.”

“We have been impressed by the Khronos Group’s proven ability to define advanced standards for mobile media acceleration, deliver them quickly to meet emerging market needs – and to prevent fragmentation within its standards to provide a stable programming environment,” said Hiroshi Ohta, executive vice president, product and service development, SoftBank Mobile.  “We have confidence that Khronos will continue to provide the foundation specifications for advanced media acceleration that will enable us to create a thriving developer community for the POP-i platform - and we are pleased to announce that we are joining Khronos to support and encourage its ongoing activities and the OpenKODE standard.”

See Khronos at SIGGRAPH 2007, San Diego; August 7-9 2007
Any members of the press and industry are invited to visit the Khronos Booth #227 to see demonstrations by Khronos Group members and to attend these Khronos events:

SIGGRAPH Course “3D Ecosystem” Tuesday 8:30 AM – 5:00 PM – Conference room 4
Khronos Handheld API BOFs: Tuesday 10:00 AM – 6:00 PM – Conference room 2
Khronos “Kodebusters” Party: Tuesday 6:00 PM-8:00 PM – Conference room 2
Khronos Japanese BOF: Wednesday 11:30 AM - 1:00 PM – Conference room 2
COLLADA Toolchain BOF: Wednesday 2:00 PM - 3:45 PM - Conference room 2
COLLADA Demo Party: Wednesday 3:45 PM – 4:45 PM - Conference room 2
OpenGL BOF: Wednesday 5:15 PM – 7:15 PM – Conference room 2
OpenGL Party: Wednesday 7:15 PM – 8:30 PM – Conference room 2

More details at http://www.khronos.org/news/events/detail/san_diego_siggraph_2007/

About The Khronos Group
The Khronos Group is a member-funded industry consortium focused on the creation of open standards such as OpenGL®, OpenKODE™, OpenGL® ES, OpenMAX™, OpenVG™, OpenSL ES™, OpenML™ and COLLADA™ to enable the authoring and acceleration of dynamic media on a wide variety of platforms and devices.  All Khronos members are able to contribute to the development of Khronos specifications, are empowered to vote at various stages before public deployment, and are able to accelerate the delivery of their cutting-edge media platforms and applications through early access to specification drafts and conformance tests.  More information is available at www.khronos.org.

About ArcSoft
ArcSoft, Inc., founded in 1994 and headquartered in Fremont, California, is an industry leading software developer of multimedia technologies and applications across desktop, embedded, and mobile platforms. ArcSoft offers a full line of high-performance imaging, audio, and video solutions within an extremely small footprint, bringing an exhilarating rich media user experience to mobile phones. ArcSoft mobile multimedia solutions are developed to support the Khronos Group’s OpenMAX standards. For further details, please visit our corporate Web site: www.arcsoft.com

About Ardites
Ardites is a consultancy company focused towards mobile software development. Ardites is a privately owned company, based in Finland and among the fastest growing companies in its industry sector. Ardites was established in 2002 and joined with the Khronos consortium in 2007. Ardites is offering services to all levels of mobile software development, such as IP providers, Operating system providers, OEMs and operators. Ardites’ portfolio, consists of, training, design, implementation and testing services. Web site: www.ardites.com

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Khronos, OpenKODE, OpenVG, OpenMAX and OpenSL ES are trademarks of the Khronos Group Inc. Web3D and X3D are trademarks of the Web3D Consortium. COLLADA is a trademark of Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. used by permission by Khronos. OpenGL and OpenML are registered trademarks and the OpenGL ES logo is a trademark of Silicon Graphics Inc. used by permission by Khronos. All other product names, trademarks, and/or company names are used solely for identification and belong to their respective owners.

SoftBank Mobile Joins the Khronos Group

SoftBank Mobile enabled to influence and promote open media standards for mobile devices - including OpenKODE adopted as part of SoftBank Mobile’s new POP-i platform

7th August, 2007 – SIGGRAPH - San Diego, CA – The Khronos™ Group is pleased to announce that SoftBank Mobile Corporation of Japan has joined the Khronos Group as a Contributing member.  In May 2007 SoftBank Mobile announced their adoption of Khronos’ OpenKODE standard for advanced graphics and media processing in its new Portable Open Platform Initiative (POP-i) platform for mobile phones.  Now, as a member of Khronos, SoftBank Mobile will be able to contribute to and vote on the development of OpenKODE and any other Khronos specifications as they are being created and evolved.

“We have been impressed by the Khronos Group’s proven ability to define advanced standards for mobile media acceleration, deliver them quickly to meet emerging market needs – and to prevent fragmentation within its standards to provide a stable programming environment,” said Hiroshi Ohta, executive vice president, product and service development, SoftBank Mobile.  “We have confidence that Khronos will continue to provide the foundation specifications for advanced media acceleration that will enable us to create a thriving developer community for the POP-i platform - and we are pleased to announce that we are joining Khronos to support and encourage its ongoing activities and the OpenKODE standard.”

“We are delighted that SoftBank Mobile has decided to join the Khronos Group to provide their support and insights into the evolution of OpenKODE and other Khronos standards,” said Neil Trevett, president of the Khronos Group and vice president of embedded content at NVIDIA.  “A deep understanding of operator requirements is vital to ensure that our specifications continue to meet real-world market needs.  Khronos is working hard to be an effective forum for the silicon, handset, software and operator communities to come together effectively to create open standards that generate market opportunities for the entire mobile industry.”

See Khronos at SIGGRAPH 2007, San Diego; August 7-9 2007
Any members of the press and industry are invited to visit the Khronos Booth #227 to see demonstrations by Khronos Group members and to attend these Khronos events:

SIGGRAPH Course “3D Ecosystem” Tuesday 8:30 AM – 5:00 PM – Conference room 4
Khronos Handheld API BOFs: Tuesday 10:00 AM – 6:00 PM – Conference room 2
Khronos “Kodebusters” Party: Tuesday 6:00 PM-8:00 PM – Conference room 2
Khronos Japanese BOF: Wednesday 11:30 AM - 1:00 PM – Conference room 2
COLLADA Toolchain BOF: Wednesday 2:00 PM - 3:45 PM - Conference room 2
COLLADA Demo Party: Wednesday 3:45 PM – 4:45 PM - Conference room 2
OpenGL BOF: Wednesday 5:15 PM – 7:15 PM – Conference room 2
OpenGL Party: Wednesday 7:15 PM – 8:30 PM – Conference room 2

More details at http://www.khronos.org/news/events/detail/san_diego_siggraph_2007/

About the POP-I Platform
The POP-i platform will enable native applications to access the full power of the OpenKODE media stack architecture which enables 2D graphics, 3D graphics, video and audio to be accelerated and flexibly combined to unlock the full potential of rich media silicon. The use of OpenKODE will encourage and protect the investment of software developers in the POP-i platform by ensuring application portability across multiple handsets – both now and into the future as new handsets are introduced.

About OpenKODE
OpenKODE is a royalty-free, cross-platform standard that combines a set of native APIs into a comprehensive media stack specification for accelerating rich media and graphics applications.  OpenKODE aims to make advanced media capabilities consistently available across multiple devices for increased native source portability and reduced mobile platform fragmentation. OpenKODE 1.0 brings together the OpenGL® ES and OpenVG™ Khronos media APIs to provide state-of-the-art acceleration for vector 2D and 3D graphics and provides the new OpenKODE Core API that abstracts operating system resources to minimize source changes when porting games and applications between Linux, Brew, Symbian, Windows Mobile, WIPI and RTOS-based platforms.  Subsequent versions of OpenKODE will add the OpenSL ES™ and OpenMAX™ media APIs to provide accelerated video and audio that is fully integrated with graphics processing.  More information in OpenKODE can be found at www.khronos.org/openkode/.

About The Khronos Group
The Khronos Group is a member-funded industry consortium focused on the creation of open standards such as OpenGL®, OpenKODE™, OpenGL® ES, OpenMAX™, OpenVG™, OpenSL ES™, OpenML™ and COLLADA™ to enable the authoring and acceleration of dynamic media on a wide variety of platforms and devices.  All Khronos members are able to contribute to the development of Khronos specifications, are empowered to vote at various stages before public deployment, and are able to accelerate the delivery of their cutting-edge media platforms and applications through early access to specification drafts and conformance tests.  More information is available at www.khronos.org.

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Khronos, OpenKODE, OpenVG, OpenMAX and OpenSL ES are trademarks of the Khronos Group Inc. Web3D and X3D are trademarks of the Web3D Consortium. COLLADA is a trademark of Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. used by permission by Khronos. OpenGL and OpenML are registered trademarks and the OpenGL ES logo is a trademark of Silicon Graphics Inc. used by permission by Khronos. All other product names, trademarks, and/or company names are used solely for identification and belong to their respective owners.

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