RE: You call that a standard?
An MPEG representative sits on the Board of Directors of the Web3DC. Since the announcement of X3D (the new draft standard with both Classic VRML and XML-encodings), there is a lot of interest in it. http://www.web3d.org Translators from common formats are appearing. Several new browsers are out there including Octaga with support for MPEG, Flux, Jinx, FreeWRL, and the Xj3D open source. The work on the binary encoding and conformance tests are coming soon. A programmable shaders working group showed some early work at the Monterey symposium. The Archaeology Technologies Laboratory (ATL) is participating in the development of an open-source X3D import/export plug-in for Alias Maya 3D authoring software, and this is critical for getting more high quality professional models and modellers. A medical viewer has been announced. The new Avalon development system is particularly interesting and also includes a Maya exporter plugin and a Plugin for 3ds max / character studio to export models as X3D (VRML encoded) with H|Anim (skins & bones) plus extensions. http://www.zgdv.de/avalon/ A keynote speaker for the Monterey symposium was the head of Sun's game development group, Doug Twilleager. With renewed interest in the standard for real time 3D, we may even get an IETM WG started to work with the CAD WG. A subject of some interest has been the addition of a 2D vector layer to X3D. I'd personally like that to be SVG or a subset of it. len From: Stephen D. Williams [mailto:sdw@l...] You might not realize it, but VRML lives on, with Java-enablement and extensions, in MPEG4 in the higher level profiles. I wondered where it 'went' for a while and then read all of the MPEG4 standards, and implemented the file format and scene description, while working for an MPEG4 video encoding company a couple years ago. VRML is the basis for the generalized scene description language which is encoded as a hand-packed bit encoded (a la Huffman) specific-schema. As long as you never extend it, that's somewhat ok, although you end up with a lot of specific parser code corresponding to everything. That's not to say that anyone has really tried yet to create a complete MPEG4 player. MPEG4 is truly the kitchen sink of "standards", er specfications. I like it and am horrified by it at the same time. That it includes VRML, Java, and a file format based on Quicktime is very interesting I thought.
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