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 Guidelines.

In early 2018 the Vulkan Working Group at Khronos started to explore how to seamlessly integrate hardware accelerated video compression and decompression into the Vulkan API. Today, Khronos is releasing a set of Provisional Vulkan Video acceleration extensions : ‘Vulkan Video’. This blog will give you an overview of Vulkan’s new video processing capabilities and we welcome feedback before the extensions are finalized so that the

Synchronization is a critical but often misunderstood part of the Vulkan API. The new VK_KHR_synchronization2 extension includes several improvements to make Vulkan Synchronization easier to use, without major changes to the fundamental concepts described below. We’ll highlight key differences introduced with Synchronization2 throughout the blog.

The newly released VK_KHR_synchronization2 extension brings extensive improvements to Vulkan queue submission, events, and pipeline barriers resulting in API significant usability enhancements for developers. Synchronization2 highlights include: Data for semaphores and command buffers is passed in arrays of structures, rather than in separate arrays spread across multiple structures, to streamline queue submissions. Barrier pipeline stage masks

Today, Khronos released a major update to SYCL with the final SYCL 2020 specification, marking years of specification development, industry feedback, and evolution of the standard to bring valuable new features and greater alignment with ISO C++. As part of the announcement, we are also sharing the increased adoption and expansion of SYCL implementations that have been released in the past year. SYCL 2020 adds significantly more features and fixe

Today, the functionality of the Vulkan SDK gets a major upgrade for Vulkan developers targeting Apple platforms. LunarG is now shipping Device Simulation (DevSim) and Validation layers for the Vulkan SDK on macOS in addition to Linux and Windows. DevSim layers enable Vulkan application development on a highly-capable development system by "simulating" a less-capable target Vulkan implementation through constraining the reported features and resources on the more-capable platform. Validation layers verify that applications are correctly using the reported Vulkan functionality. The validation layers and associated Vulkan loader on macOS also now support Apple Silicon via Universal Binaries.

On November 18, 2020, WebGL held an engaging and informative virtual WebGL Meetup. Co-organizer of the event, Damon Hernandez, led the discussion and kicked off the meeting by having the Chair of WebGL, Ken Russell, giving an update on the latest WebGL progress along with some “Cool WebGL Stuff.” After the update, the guest speakers addressed several topics.

For the past two years, Holochip has been working on light field technology for the US Navy’s Aegis program. The program calls for a table top light field display that can accommodate horizontal and vertical real-time parallax. In October 2020, the team working on OpenXR™ at Holochip released an open source Vulkan® example project and started work with light field display technology using the OpenXR API. As a result of both efforts, Holochip has discovered a method of light field real-time rendering that is built upon the Khronos Group’s Vulkan Ray Tracing extensions.

The Khronos Vulkan Ray Tracing Task Sub Group (TSG) has developed and released a set of extensions that seamlessly integrate ray tracing functionality into the existing Vulkan framework. This blog summarizes how the Vulkan Ray Tracing extensions were developed, and illustrates how they can be used by developers to bring ray tracing functionality to their applications.

Recently, the Khronos 3D Commerce Working Group hosted a webinar to discuss its activities, including why industry alignment on the glTF file format (the “JPEG for 3D”) is crucial, and how standardization will bring new opportunities to any designer, retailer, manufacturer or technology company developing 3D experiences. At the end of the webinar, the audience submitted questions for panelists. As this dialogue benefits the whole community, we’re sharing the answers as a Q&A. You can watch the complete webinar recording, but this is not a verbatim transcription: The questions have been reordered for a logical flow, and additional data released since the webinar has been added. If you have questions of your own, comment below and we’ll be sure to get back to you!

Today, the Khronos Vulkan Working Group has released the final Vulkan Ray Tracing extensions that seamlessly integrate ray tracing functionality alongside Vulkan’s rasterization framework, making Vulkan the industry’s first open, cross-vendor, cross-platform standard for ray tracing acceleration. The final ray tracing functionality is defined by a set of 5 extensions, namely VK_KHR_acceleration_structure, VK_KHR_ray_tracing_pipeline, VK_KHR_ray_query, VK_KHR_pipeline_library, and VK_KHR_deferred_host_operations. ISVs played a pivotal role in shaping the extension to enable hybrid rendering—where rasterization and ray tracing are used in tandem to achieve compelling levels of visual fidelity and interactivity.

Today, Khronos has released the final versions of the set of Vulkan, GLSL and SPIR-V extension specifications that seamlessly integrate ray tracing into the existing Vulkan framework. This is a significant milestone as it is the industry’s first open, cross-vendor, cross-platform standard for ray tracing acceleration - and can be deployed either using existing GPU compute or dedicated ray tracing cores. Vulkan Ray Tracing will be familiar to anyone who has used DirectX Raytracing (DXR) in DirectX 12, but also introduces advanced functionality such as the ability to load balance ray tracing setup operations onto the host CPU. Although ray tracing will be first deployed on desktop systems, these Vulkan extensions have been designed to enable and encourage ray tracing to also be deployed on mobile.

In the world of e-commerce, many products come in different options, or variants. When shopping online, for example, colors and materials of a brand of shoe might have an image representing each option. And now, in addition to using 2D images, more and more retailers are starting to use 3D and AR to merchandise products in online channels to enable customers to more fully experience products or view items in their environment in rich 3D. Each time a customer views a different colored shoe, there’s a good chance that another complete 3D model is being loaded just to display that color variant. This leads to increased download times and wasted bandwidth as the files contain a lot of redundant data, including downloading exactly the same geometry multiple times. In turn this causes increased memory usage on the device, and slower interactivity, resulting in a poor customer experience. Learn how the Khronos Group and the 3D Commerce working group is improving this.

The Vulkan Working Group has just released the VK_KHR_fragment_shading_rate extension, which provides a new, flexible technique to control the fragment shading rate, enabling developers to perform shading at a lower resolution than the render targets. This fine level of control allows developers to focus shading resources where they are needed, which ultimately increases rendering performance and quality.

The Khronos 3D Commerce™ Working Group was established with the goal of spearheading industry alignment on the creation, management and display of 3D content for e-commerce—and since its formation, the use cases for 3D assets in e-commerce have rapidly expanded. In response, the 3D Commerce Working Group has today released V1.0 of its Realtime Asset Creation Guidelines for use by 3D artists who are familiar with 3D workflows, but new to creating e-commerce 3D assets for cross-platform delivery.