Just back from the hilltop city of Perugia, where the Web3D 2007 Symposium was held, Web3D Executive Director Rita Turkowski announced that this year was a great success. Highlights from the symposium included X3D tutorials, and an inspiring keynote by Kari Pulli, Khronos Member and Research Fellow at Nokia, giving insight into where 3D on mobile is going. Also at the Symposium we heard an excellent COLLADA tutorial by Khronos Member Rémi Arnaud of SONY SCEA and Bruno Patatas, CEO of Pixelbox Academy. Web3D will be at Siggraph 2007 with a presence in the Khronos booth.
Feeling Software has just released version 3.03 of its Feeling Viewer. Designed explicitly to support everything in the COLLADA 3D file format, the Feeling Viewer has advanced shading effects, complex character animations (e.g. skinning and morphing) and physics. If you're an artist looking for a good viewer to display your complex animated scenes, look no further: this is the most advanced 3D viewer available commercially. Your animated models will look just as good or better in the Feeling Viewer than in the original CAD or DCC application. The Feeling Viewer is not just for playback: the underlying Feeling 3D Engine is extensible and has been integrated in several 3rd party applications to enhance them with fast, top-notch 3D graphics with relatively little programming effort. The Feeling Viewer now runs on Linux, Mac OS X, Internet Explorer, Powerpoint and many more applications. This is accompanied by many new features including complex particle systems, trimmed NURBS surfaces and environment mapping.
The OpenGL ES working group is pleased to announce the release of the OpenGL ES 1.1 Full Specification
The OpenGL ES working group is pleased to announce the release of the OpenGL ES 1.1 Full Specification. Previously, OpenGL ES 1.1 was defined by a "difference specification", which was an annotated list of differences between it and desktop OpenGL 1.5. To understand the API, programmers new to OpenGL had to read the 300+ page OpenGL 1.5 specification, cross-referencing against the difference specification to see which features were supported. The new document is entirely self-contained, so no cross-referencing is required. And, as it is only about half as long as the desktop specification, it is much easier for OpenGL beginners to read. The API itself is of course unchanged, and the working group will continue to maintain and publish the older difference specification for those who prefer it. Both versions of the specification are available at the Khronos OpenGL ES specification download page
‘Mobile 3D Graphics: Learning 3D Graphics with the Java Micro Edition’ Covers Java Programming on Mobile Devices
The book introduces you to the world of 3D graphics with the Mobile 3D Graphics API (JSR 184). It covers the basics of 3D programming, but also advanced topics such as quaternion math, environment mapping, and creating articulated characters. You will also learn how to create 3D content in in the open-source tool Blender, import the artwork into your application, and then tailor the export to meet your needs. The skills learnt in the book will easily extend to other APIs, including OpenGL ES with JSR 239 and the MascotCapsule V3 API, which are both featured in the appendix. Check out the free sample chapter and more information on the author's Web site
From 3GSM to GDC to Mobile Entertainment World… Khronos members weigh in on the latest in mobile and graphic technology 3GSM and GDC: Kathleen Maher of Jon Peddie Research has worked with Khronos to produce an excellent series of nine new podcasts. This is best listened to as a two part series. First, Kathleen interviews Khronos members at 3GSM to find out what was the buzz in Barcelona. Khronos members are the experts behind the tremendously successful Khronos standards for 3D, 2D, video and audio for mobile devices. Kathleen talks with Members about how the new technologies can be used to create applications for mobile phones.
LightWave Rendition for Adobe Photoshop will ship with its own 3D model art library and works with models from other sources, such as COLLADA. LightWave Rendition allows each format to be fully rendered in high-resolution with all of their properties.
Khronos Contributing Member Ikivo AB announced a collaboration with Advanced Micro Devices to demonstrate accelerated vector graphics for rich media a
The Ikivo application running on AMD's hardware leverages Ikivo's portfolio of Enrich Tools and Clients based on Mobile SVG (Scalable Vector Graphics), and the AMD Imageon™ media processor solution for OpenVG 1.0. The stunning performance improvements achieved by hardware accelerated OpenVG is expected to stimulate wider use of rich media in mobile services and improve the user experience in applications such as Mobile TV, 2D games, media players and On-Device portals.
"Ikivo is excited to work with AMD on demonstrating these new opportunities to the mobile industry and content developers. SVG is proving to be the ideal basis from which to build these new, high-performance rich media solutions. To date, 225 million SVG-enabled devices have been shipped globally. With the introduction of Ikivo Enrich, Ikivo continues its commitment to bring powerful tools and client solutions to the market", said Håkan Engman, vice president at Ikivo.
Ikivo (formerly ZOOMON) is a leading provider of software solutions based on SVG, designed to enhance and expand the range of services and opportunities for mobile phone users. Ikivo believes that OpenVG will enable the mobile industry to develop more compelling rich content services on lower priced handsets. For more information, please visit the Ikivo site for the official press release.
Agreement between groups will accelerate the architectural evolution of cell phones and the web and they both use 3D graphics. It’s ironic that over the past decade, two not-for-profit groups have been working diligently behind the scenes to lay the cornerstones of what is now becoming a white-hot, multi-billion dollar market. Many years ago, the founders of these organizations envisioned a whole new way of communicating and sharing data. Since then, the Khronos Group has successfully set the foundation for mobile 3D, TV and video; and the Web3D Consortium has made significant progress in introducing and commercializing real-time, connected 3D into the medical imaging, military simulation, geospatial, CAD, and web-based visualization markets.
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.