Khronos Blog

Announcements, articles, and blurbs from Khronos and Khronos members about Khronos tech, conformant products, and more. If you are a interested in submitting a blog post, please check out our Blog Guidlines.


Vulkan 1.2 Deepens HLSL Support HLSL support in Vulkan has come a long way since its introduction. Over the past couple of years HLSL in Vulkan has made amazing strides to hit a critical maturation point and earned the coveted label of production ready. HLSL in Vulkan has been achieved through integrating a SPIR-V backend into DXC, Microsoft’s open source HLSL compiler (the encircled section in Figure 1 below), and Khronos’ glslang. I

The original Vulkan synchronization APIs relied on two separate coarse-grained primitives: VkSemaphore and VkFence. Both of these were reusable binary-state objects with slightly different purposes and behavior. VkSemaphore allowed applications to synchronize operations across device queues. VkFence facilitated device to host synchronization. Together, they enabled applications to observe and control the execution of command buffers and other queue commands, but they inherited various limitations of the underlying OS and device mechanisms at the time which made them somewhat difficult to use.

As the “JPEG of 3D,” glTF™ from Khronos® has made a big impact in the world of 3D, enabling the efficient transmission and loading of 3D scenes and models by applications. Cesium, a platform for creating 3D applications that are fast, flexible, and based on real-world geospatial data, has used glTF extensively to further its mission of empowering developers and data providers to build web-based 3D map experiences, and now Cesium has teamed with Uber to continue expanding its 3D Tiles ecosystem, built on glTF.

Last month I wrote about a new book on Data science and visual computing. The book tells us, as we already well know, we are awash in data. It's like the weather, we know it, we can't manage it. We are struggling to get a grip on it, understand it, use it and exploit it, but it is being generated faster than we can harness it. What's more, there are a dozen or more ways to funnel that data to a display with multiple pipelines and APIs. It is a hodgepodge of software that has evolved from the early 1980s (I know because I contributed to the mess we have today). Here comes Khronos to save the day with an exploratory committee to discuss the standardization of an analytic rendering API for data visualization. Khronos is inviting all interested parties to participate. There is no cost or IP obligations to share perspectives, requirements, and use-cases to help determine whether there is an industry need for such an API and to help set the direction for any standardization activities.

Today, The Khronos® Group releases the Vulkan® Unified Samples Repository, a new central location where anyone can access Khronos-reviewed, high-quality Vulkan code samples in order to make development easier and more streamlined for all abilities. Khronos and its members, in collaboration with external contributors, created the Vulkan Unified Samples Project in response to user demand for more accessible resources and best practices for developing with Vulkan.

On September 19 at AutoSens Brussels, Stephane Strahm of Kalray will be joining other attendees to discuss options for addressing the increasingly complex challenges facing automotive vision system engineers. Pushed by developments in markets such as Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) and autonomous vehicles, maintaining component interoperability in increasingly complex vehicle subsystems is proving to be a big obstacle.

Big news! 3D software developer, Autodesk has joined The Khronos Group. Autodesk is an industry-leading provider of 3D design, engineering and entertainment software, that joined the 3D Formats Working Group to support the Khronos glTF file format and the 3D Commerce Exploratory Group, a group of companies exploring standards and guidelines for the production and distribution of real-time 3D representations of products.

In 2016, the Uber Visualization team released an open source version of deck.gl and luma.gl, two Khronos Group WebGL™-powered frameworks for visualizing and exploring huge geospatial data sets on maps. Since then, the technology has flourished into a full-fledged suite of over a dozen open source WebGL and GPGPU data visualization libraries and tools, known collectively as vis.gl. loaders.gl, the newest addition to the vis.gl family, adds support for loading and rendering glTF™ assets across the tech stack. This unlocks the ability to include rich 3D content within data visualization applications built using luma.gl and deck.gl, enabling a variety of interesting new use cases. In this post, we’ll show some applications and walk through how you can use deck.gl and glTF, Khronos’ open standard 3D file format, to quickly create a geospatial data visualization that renders tens of thousands of 3D models.

Earlier today, Google and Binomial announced that they have partnered to open source a sophisticated texture compressor and a high-performance transcoder for Binomial’s cross-platform Basis Universal texture format. This format can help solve a long-standing problem in the 3D ecosystem: how can 3D textures assets be efficiently packaged or transmitted for an application in a way that is both compact AND can be efficiently processed by the wide diversity of GPU hardware texture engines - each of which has a preferred native format?
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