News Archives

The COLLADA RT Loader is a sample that was developed to load COLLADA document scene files, and render them using CG 1.5. It provides scene heirarchy, cameras, animation, and skinning support as well as basic COLLADA_FX rendering with the assistance of the COLLADA_FX lib.

The COLLADA FX Loader project is a sample that was developed to load a basic COLLADA FX document, and to make all of the calls to the Cg / CgGL runtime to create and initialize the materials and effects defined in COLLADA. It also provides an API to apply those effects through calls to set and reset the pass state of an effect.

The sample projects complement the open source COLLADA DOM, an API that provides a C++ object representation of a COLLADA XML instance document.

Three new streaming Flash videos of demos from GDC 2006 show interoperability of physical simulations using COLLADA 1.4.

  • Ragdoll simulation using Nima PhysX plug-in for Maya
  • Nima PhysX plug-in for Maya with support for COLLADA Physics
  • Exporting rigid body car crash scene from Maya to COLLADA

The Collada 1.4.0 Plug-in for Blender is a script to import from and export to the Collada 1.4 format in Blender, the open source software for 3D modeling, animation, rendering, post-production, interactive creation and playback . The plugin is a python script which runs through the Blender Python Interpretor and consists of two parts: The Collada 1.4.0 API is the converter between a Collada XML file (*.dae) and an object oriented representation of the Collada schema in Python. The Translator converts the Collada structure to Blender and vice versa. This early v0.1 release imports/exports geometry, lights, cameras, transformations and parent relationships.

Three new OpenMAX IL 1.0 technical whitepapers describe:

  • How OpenMAX IL can be used in the Linux GStreamer framework to enable access to multimedia components, including HW acceleration on platforms that provide it.
  • How the Microsoft DirectShow Filter interface may be translated to the OpenMAX IL base profile interface for integration with Windows Mobile Enabled devices with a pull and a push communication model.
  • How OpenMAX IL codecs can be used within the Symbian Media Device Framework to enable access to multimedia acceleration on Symbian OS Devices.

MobiX3D is a mobile player for X3D (the successor to VRML) and Humanoid-Animation content. The rendering engine of the MobiX3D player supports OpenGL ES and features transparency (alpha-blending), color and shading (wireframe, flat and gouraud shading supported), texturing, lighting, backface culling. The player makes use of the GLUT|ES toolkit. The v0.2 release binaries are available for PocketPC using OpenGL ES 1.1 (Hybrid's Rasteroid) and for Intel 2700G-based devices (e.g. Dell Axim X50V) using OpenGL ES 1.0.

Three video of demos from GDC 2006 show interoperability of game assets using COLLADA 1.4.

  • Workflows using NVIDIA's FX Composer 2 and common Digital Content Creation (DCC) tools like Maya, connected by the COLLADA interchange format.
  • Game pipeline interoperability using FX Composer 2, Softimage Maya, & Softimage XSI with COLLADA as the glue between the tools.
  • How 3ds Max can be inserted into a COLLADA workflow where FX Composer is used for the illumination and HLSL shaders.
If you were wondering how COLLADA actually facilitates workflows and maintains assets, these video demos will make thing clear. More video demos from GDC to come soon.

Blender Pocket is an open source, handheld devices port of Blender 3D open-source software for 3D modeling, animation, rendering and playback. It runs using the Rasteroid OpenGL ES implementation (using a wrapper for any missing desktop OpenGL functions). Support for the Vincent open source OpenGL ES implementation is also planned. Currently it runs on Pocket PC but the author is looking for other people to port to other other embedded devices supporting OpenGL ES. The latest version adds support for images with UV mapping. Blender Pocket forums provide support for development efforts.

This paper presents a bandwidth friendly approach to remote rendering of large 3D content (like cities), using Non-Photorealistic Rendering. The original textures of the facade are processed and the feature lines are extracted. The resulting data set (buildings with their characteristic lines) is optimized for remote visualization and stored on the server side. The city is then streamed on-demand on a remote client and rendered using OpenGL ES on handheld devices. This approach is useful for 3D content display on small screens where overly detailed textures can hide the salient characteristic features. It also greatly reduces the amount of data to transmit, making this solution well suited for limited-bandwidth networks like the ones used by mobile devices. Test were run on a DELL Axim X50V with a 624 MHz ARM processor, 64 MB of RAM memory and an Intel 2700G GPU andfull hardware acceleration using OpenGL-ES up to 640x480. Paper available as a PDF.

The m-LOMA(mobile LOcation-aware Messaging Application) application is the first true mobile 3D map program that renders 3D views in real-time, using easy-to-recognize high-quality 3D models, large view distance and free movement in the 3D world. Unlike a traditional map, with a 3D map application you always know your location on the map either by GPS tracking or by simply recognizing the buildings or other landmarks near you on the 3D map. m-LOMA uses the OpenGL ES API for rendering, and has a full optimization toolchain for the 3D models and textures, including visibility calculations, collision avoidance and pre-calculated visibility approximations for moving objects. Available for Symbian Series 60 and 80, Linux, Windows, WindowsCE (MobileWindows) and Mac OS X.

The Torus 3D Engine uses OpenGL ES hardware acceleration under BREW enabled mobile devices. The engine features 3DSMAX exporting scripts, quick and easy models loading, mesh sharing, skybox, hierarchical scenegraph, q3 compatible bsp with pvs and lightmapping, quick frustum culling, oriented bounding boxes, multipass environment/phong mapping and more. Full source code has been released (registration required for download).

The Tokyo Mobile Developer University focused on Gaming & Media, will be held April 28th, 2006. Presentations and demos cover OpenKODE (a native content platform providing source portability for games and media applications), OpenGL ES (3D for mobile), OpenSL ES (audio for mobile), OpenMAX (streaming media), OpenVG (accelerated Flash, PDF and SVG), and COLLADA (digital asset application interoperability). Sessions are free but space is limited.
(PDF news release in Japanese)

The presentations from the day-long tutorial on March 21st at Game Developers Conference 2006 are now online. These PowerPoint slides provide an in-depth look at the latest technologies in OpenGL ES and how they can be applied to cutting-edge game graphics, with special attention is given to the unique performance and design requirements of embedded applications. Topics include Advanced Rendering, ColladaFX, PlayStation GL, Portable Engine Developement, Performance Optimization and more.

Intel has joined the Khronos Group as a Promoter member and will also hold a seat on the Board of Directors to further advance the evolution of open standards that enable the authoring and acceleration of games and media on a wide variety of platforms and devices, such as mobile phones. Also announced in other Khronos news today, new members Emdigo, Feeling Software, Monotype Imaging, RadVision, Reigncomm, Scaleform, Softimage and TAT bring the total number of companies participating in the Khronos Group to over one hundred.

The COLLADA 1.4 data digital asset schema is the first cross-platform standard shader and effects definition written in XML and includes core features such as mesh geometry, skinning, morphing, animation and data validation. This new version of the digital asset schema will enable content creation pipelines that can automatically condition and scale 3D geometry and texture assets for real-time playback on a wide diversity of platforms including hand-held devices.

COLLADA FX is the industry's first cross-platform standard for defining visual effects that targets both high-end systems such as gaming consoles as well as embedded and hand-held systems. Effects may be authored to support many different profiles which may include the use of the OpenGL Shading Language, NVIDIA's Cg shading language, or OpenGL ES 1.1 state setting and texture combiners.

COLLADA Physics is the industry's first open standard data definition for physics effects including rigid body dynamics, rag dolls, constraints and collision volumes enabling data interchange between AGEIA (Novodex), Havok, Meqon, ODE and other game physics middle-ware.

Khronos and members of the COLLADA working group are developing open source example code for COLLADA and will release a COLLADA conformance test suite during 2006. There are already COLLADA 1.4 exporters for leading tools such as 3DStudio, Maya, Blender, SOFTIMAGE, and Lightwave.

New members Emdigo, Feeling Software and Softimage have joined Khronos in order to develop the COLLADA standard and integrate it with other Khronos APIs.