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WHIM S2008. Web-Enhanced Information Virtualization. An Overview of Web-Based 3D Computer Graphics Standards. Why do we need it. Encapsulate computing resources from the user Provide a simplified interface to enhance usability. 2D vs. 3D. Decade-long debate

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Web enhanced information virtualization

WHIM

S2008

Web-EnhancedInformation Virtualization

An Overview of Web-Based

3D Computer Graphics Standards


Why do we need it
Why do we need it

  • Encapsulate computing resources from the user

  • Provide a simplified interface to enhance usability


2d vs 3d
2D vs. 3D

  • Decade-long debate

    2D: Takes less power to compute, easier to encode and transmit;

    But generally less expressive and compelling, viewer perspective limited by the dimension to the creators’ own

    3D: More difficult to model;

    But easier to manipulate from multiple perspectives and animate more realistic motions.


Standard artifact vrml
Standard Artifact: VRML

  • Virtual Reality Modeling Language, originally named as “VR Markup Language”

  • A standard for presenting 3D interactive vector graphics

  • Designed for WWW context


Format of vrml
Format of VRML

  • Uses text to describe vertices and edges of 3D polygons, along with the texture information (mapping, surface color, shininess, etc).

  • URL can be associated with any graphical component

  • Aspects of the virtual world (lighting, sounds, etc) can be included in the world file (.wrl) to interact with the user or external events

  • Support embedded Java or JavaScript code for event-handling.


Code segment of a vrml file
Code Segment of a VRML file

#VRML V2.0 utf8

WorldInfo {

title “Just a sample“

info [“ for Apr.29 WHIM presentation"“[email protected]"]

}

Transform {

translation 0 2.25 0

children [

Shape {

appearance Appearance {

texture ImageTexture { url "me.jpg" }

}

geometry Sphere { radius 0.75 }

}

]

}


History of vrml
History of VRML

Birth: First proposed in a paper submitted to the First International Conference on World Wide Web

Popularization: Revamped as VRML 97; established as an ISO standard; became widely used, particularly for education and research area.

CyberTown.com’s 3D chat application developped by Blaxxun Software in VRML97 standard


History of vrml1
History of VRML

Criticism:

“VRML was born dead. It never solved any real problems. Good riddance.”

--Clay Shirky, on the WWW Artist Consortium mailing list

“No integration with HTML, They were too busy getting the 3D to work.”

--Chris Phillips, director of business development and multimedia at Microsoft

Central idea of these criticism is: VRML gets the job done on 3D part, but its spec is locked, thus there is no easy way to integrate or extend it.


X3D

  • The successor of VRML, from Web3D Consortium

  • XML-Based

  • First approved by ISO in 2004

  • Defines several sets of extensions for different purposes

    • Core set

    • Interchange

    • CAD

    • Geospatial

    • Immersive

  • Browser makers can define their own extensions and submit to Web3DC for standardization


X3d s improvement over vrml
X3D’s Improvement over VRML

Multiple data encodings

New graphics features

New networking features

Improved APIs, more language/object model bindings

Modularity

MPEG-4 has streaming interactive 3D using VRML


Interaction model
Interaction Model

Add Your Text

Text

Text

Cycle name

Text

Text

Text


Data encoded in x3d
Data Encoded in X3D

  • Sample Java Applet 3D Model Viewer embedded in the html page


Development enviorment
Development Enviorment

  • Xj3D: a Java based developer X3D Toolkit and browser for data modelled in X3D


Conclusion
Conclusion

  • X3D is a relative junior standard

  • There are some other competing standards (e.g. COLLADA) alternative to X3D

  • X3D’s promising for 3D Web Publishing, durability and full potential yet to be seen


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