My comments on Google converting O3D to WebGL

Posted on:May 10 2010

As Google just announced, they are basically stopping development of the O3D plugin and rewriting it for WebGL. I received a few mails [ok, there were only two ;)] trying to bring this to my attention and asking me about a comment on this. So here you go:

When I started developing CopperCube and its WebGL 3d engine CopperLicht, choosing WebGL (and Flash 3D) as 3d rendering technology, some people commented that I should instead go with the then newly announced O3D plugin instead. I didn't do this, believing no new browser plugin would ever have a real chance unless it is named 'Flash', and it seems as this was a good decision. The result was that CopperCube was the first sophisticated tool for creating WebGL content and a lot of people are happy it exists.

And as it appears, now also the Google Team behind O3D realized that plugins is not the way to go and that WebGL is the future. Admittedly some people seem to be quite angry that they abadoned the O3D-plugin project suddenly and started to reimplement it. Of course the first WebGL version of O3D is still slow, but as you can see for example at the Demos of CopperLicht, 3d engines using JavaScript and WebGL can be really fast if optimized a bit. I bet the O3D team at google will achieve better performance as well in the near future.

So I think this is a great and important step for WebGL and they the O3D team did the right thing. WebGL is getting more attention this way, it gets more popular and it gets more support, resulting in more developers starting to use it. And this is a great thing.


When will it be available in browsers?
2010-05-10 17:59:00

nobody knows..
2010-05-11 05:28:00

I also prefer open standards to plugins. Maybe I should really give it a try, but Irrlicht still uses most of my free time ;)
2010-05-11 07:29:00

firefox 4 just got announced and it seems like it will be the first version with official webgl support. firefox 3.7 will be skipped and firefox 4 will be released later this year.

i don't know when chrome will officially support it.

i am really looking forward to doing projects with webgl. :) i just can't imagine how to do audio effects like pitch shifting and how a javascript 3d physics engine is supposed to be fast enough. :s
2010-05-11 12:58:00

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