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[Public WebGL] rejecting WEBGL_color_buffer_float and EXT_color_buffer_half_float



Overview

The proposal to reject WEBGL_color_buffer_float and EXT_color_buffer_half_float is pending: https://github.com/KhronosGroup/WebGL/pull/846

The task is to decide if These extensions should be rejected. This is not an easy decision because these extensions are community approved. However the approval is based on a technicality raised by Mozilla (see history).

Justification

Community approved extensions can be rejected as the extension development process states.

community approved extension can only be rejected in extraordinary circumstances.

An extension has to move through the extension process, as the extension development process states:

Every extension should advance to Khronos ratified.

 If an extension cannot advance it can be rejected, as the extension development process states:

If an extension cannot advance through the extension process it can be rejected.

It is customary not to propose ratification unless several vendors have exposed implementations (in fact this is a semi-formal standard for community approval as well). If there is no intent to implement these extensions, as is stated by Google (see history), then these extensions cannot move to ratified. If they cannot move to ratified, then they have to be rejected.

I posit that these community approved extensions are probably impossible to ratify, and that they should therefore be rejected.

History

These extensions where moved to community approved November 24th 2014 based on a pull request by Jeff Gilbert: https://www.khronos.org/webgl/public-mailing-list/archives/1411/msg00088.html

Previous discussion to move these extensions out of draft was initiated by Dan Glastonbury July 23rd 2014: https://www.khronos.org/webgl/public-mailing-list/archives/1407/msg00050.html

On July 23rd Kenneth Russel notes: https://www.khronos.org/webgl/public-mailing-list/archives/1407/msg00051.html

Unfortunately, both spec and implementation problems were encountered
while trying to implement WEBGL_color_buffer_float against OpenGL ES
2.0 (ANGLE, in particular).

On January 31st 2015 Kenneth Russel reaffirms that there is no intent by Google to implement these extensions: https://www.khronos.org/webgl/public-mailing-list/archives/1501/msg00136.html 

Mozilla has retracted their implementation of these extensions and as of January 2015, they where no longer available in Firefox.

Feedback from Apple, Microsoft and Mozilla on these extensions is outstanding. Calls for feedback where made:

- January 14th 2015: https://www.khronos.org/webgl/public-mailing-list/archives/1501/msg00050.html
- January 24th 2015: https://www.khronos.org/webgl/public-mailing-list/archives/1501/msg00068.html
- January 27th 2015: https://www.khronos.org/webgl/public-mailing-list/archives/1501/msg00124.html

Suggested course of action

I propose that objections to the proposal to reject these extensions is registered by February 20th 2015 latest (2 weeks from now), and that if no objections are raised these extensions are rejected fortwith.