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Re: [Public WebGL] Volume Textures

On Mar 24, 2011, at 5:19 PM, Mo, Zhenyao wrote:

> On Thu, Mar 24, 2011 at 9:30 AM, Chris Marrin <cmarrin@apple.com> wrote:
>> On Mar 24, 2011, at 4:18 AM, John Davis wrote:
>>> In the meantime, is there any chance we could add an extension to WebGL and Angle to support volume textures for the rather large use case of Chrome and FireFox?  This is very low hanging fruit that will add considerable bang on the fragment shader side.
>> Let's be careful about what we call "low hanging fruit". WebGL attempts to allow content to be written across a wide range of hardware. That's why we based the spec on OpenGL ES 2.0 rather than desktop OpenGL. If you look at the WebGL extension registry (http://www.khronos.org/registry/webgl/extensions/), all of the extensions there are available on at least one OpenGL ES implementation on mobile devices (iPhone).
>> That doesn't mean we can't discuss other extensions (like this one). But I would be very against adding any and all extensions just because they exist on some driver in some version of OpenGL on some platform. I even agree that 3D textures are available in a majority of desktop OpenGL implementations. And GL_OES_texture_3D is defined for OpenGL ES. But I don't know of any current implementations of OpenGL ES that support it.
>> My concern is that WebGL will get fragmented and that authors will start using extensions that are available on a small number of implementations degrading the WebGL experience for everyone else. I don't think we want to go there at this early stage of development.
>> -----
>> ~Chris
>> cmarrin@apple.com
> I think you made a strong argument here, however, I always believe
> that the content authors should make the call, not WebGL.  If, for
> example, an author makes a game and he/she only cares about users with
> high-end graphics cards, I think WebGL should provide a way to make
> the game rock.
> That said, I agree that we might want to wait until the general public
> get to sample WebGL and form some fundamental opinion before we make
> it wild.  Otherwise, if a user wants to see how WebGL works, and half
> the contents doesn't work, that might damp the impression.

Remember that WebGL is a standard, not a product. One of the goals of the standard is "broad compatibility". Companies make products, and can add any special features to their WebGL implementation they feel their customers would find useful. We made the extension mechanism to give vendors the ability to extend WebGL in well defined and compatible ways. But I believe it is a mistake to add a wide range of not well supported extensions to the registry.


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