This sample chapter on Gamasutra from COLLADA: Sailing the Gulf of 3D Digital Content Creation” explains why the COLLADA technology has been developed. It provides a global view, defines the problems addressed by the technology, the main actors, and the goals and perspectives for this new technology. It provides an historic overview and information on how COLLADA is being designed and adopted. The goal is to give the reader an insight into how the design choices are made and how this technology might evolve. Also see the COLLADA Scenes sample chapter.
“Recently, we’ve had the opportunity to play around with Papervision3D - a full blown open-source 3D engine for Flash. The simplicity and power of the engine are amazing (especially in AS3), but what really explains its recent popularity is the ability to parse COLLADA data. In other words, Papervision3D allows Flash Developers to work closely with 3D artists that could export low-poly models and environments directly from Max and Maya.” Also see the Papervision 3D blog for more COLLADA details.
COLLADA and X3D are two royalty-free open standards that use XML schema technology to represent 3D content. This whitepaper will assist developers in understanding the similarities and differences between COLLADA and X3D, the design goals that informed their development, and how and where the two standards can be used together as a powerful tool set for developing Web and enterprise applications.
Adobe announced Photoshop CS3 Extended which will allow designers to leverage the Photoshop image editing toolset and paint engine when editing 3D content including COLLADA format models. This means that artists can can perform 3D model visualization and texture editing and see the result on the 3D model all within Photoshop and then update the 3D models using the edited textures (that are saved back to disk). This also offers a new tool for Google Earth users, since they can now take their 3D model from Sketchup, and paint on it using Photoshop, before uploading it to Google Earth, all in the same COLLADA format.
DeleD is a 3D modeler and level-editor combined into one and is specifically designed to create static objects/worlds. The DeleD 3D Editor Lite COLLADA Exporter Plug-in enables exporting to the COLLADA (.DAE) file format from within DeleD. The new exporter v2.0 works with DeleD 1.6 and above.
Qtopia Core is the leading application framework for single-application devices powered by embedded Linux and forms the foundation for the Qtopia Phone Edition and Platform Edition. The new Qtopia Core 4.3 beta adds support for OpenGL ES for accelerated graphics. Beta is available for download under a preview evaluation license.
Videos: The Softimage|XSI Crosswalk video describes how to create a Half-Life 2 character out of mulitiple COLLADA assets coming from many different softwares, integrating and refining them in XSI, and then exporting for use in a game. The Feeling Software videos show short demos of the features of Feeling’s COLLADA Tools for Max and Maya.
Panel Discussion: Notes from the COLLADA panel discussion summarizes the thoughts of professional developers talking about using COLLADA in real world production
Presentations: Pixelbox Academy presentations cover “COLLADA 101 - Fast Track to Getting Started” and “Everything you ever wanted to know about COLLADA”. GDC Mobile presentations include: “Mobile 3D Hardware: They’re Not Little PCs!”, “Premium Phone Graphics: The New Generation of Mobile 3D Gaming” and “3D Convergence: Crossing Language and Platform Boundaries”.
AmanithVG is a commercial cross-platform solution for accelerated vector graphics. It is entirely built on top of OpenGL or OpenGL ES APIs. This video shows real-time vector graphics using AmanithVG 1.0 engine running on a Nokia N93 using the built-in OpenGL ES hardware support.
HUONE will show AlexVG engine, AlexVG m-player, AlexVG t-player and the new AlexVG onGLES at CTIA Wireless 2007 (Mar 27-29). AlexVG onGLES is a new product which can accelerate OpenVGV and SVG vector graphics rendering using 3D graphic chips based on OpenGL ES. HUONE will pre-demonstrate AlexVG onGLES in their CTIA Wireless booth #4443-1 in the Korea Pavilion. Official product launch is scheduled for April.
The Embedded Systems 3D Game SDK (ES 3D Game SDK )is an Open Source 3D Game Engine / SDK for embedded devices. The new v0.4 adds support for OpenKODE and enhances terrain and texture rendering. The SDK is tested against the OpenGL ES library from Hybrid Graphics (Rasteroid 3.1), Imagination Technologies (PowerVR) and Nokia (OpenGL ES 1.1 Plugin). For OpenKODE, the Acrodea SDK is used and tested.
The intent GamePlayer Application Development Kit (ADK) offers an implementation of OpenKODE with OpenGL ES 1.1 and EGL 1.3. It enables game developers rapid development of their code and deployment across all of the industry’s major CPU architectures and devices including X86 and ARM and peripheral silicon support such as graphics acceleration. Using the ADK, you can deliver a single binary ubiquitously across the industry’s architectures enabling game applications to run at native speed across different platforms, irrespective of the hardware and across both open and closed operating systems. It also supports over-the-air deployment, even on “closed” platforms that are not normally capable of over-the-air deployment of native content. This initial launch of the ADK is a BETA version. An upgrade, ADK 1.0 is expected to replace this by the end of March. The download is available at no charge.
Many of the presentation from GDC are now available as PDF. Presentations cover OpenGL (2.1 and beyond), COLLADA, OpenKODE, OpenMAX, OpenVG, OpenSL ES, OpenGL ES 2.0, as well as news and announcements about the new glFX and Composition Working Groups.
COLLADA used to bring interactive 3D assets to the web - new online PaperVision3D fighter game and Web3D GDC presentation
Interactive 3D on the Web (i.e. Web3D) is becoming a reality with COLLADA as the enabling intermediate format. The first PaperVision3D game Xwing Obstacle Course lets you control a simple fighter in real-time 3D over the web using Flash. The posting describes the workflow using COLLADA models. The COLLADA for the Web presentation from GDC explains how COLLADA, Ajax and X3D are used within Flux to enable real-time streaming 3D virtual worlds and games over the web.
Bullet is a state-of-the-art 3D Collision Detection and Rigid Body Dynamics Library for games with support for COLLADA 1.4 physics. It is released under a ZLib license, free for commercial use, including Playstation 3. The new v2.45 improves COLLADA import and enhances performance for convex polyhedral shapes.