Feeds

NTT preps 3D web browser

Not quite cyberspace

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

Japanese software company NTT will release its three-dimensional web browser in October, the company revealed last week.

The ¥30,000 ($275) SpaceBrowser package works with Internet Explorer to render information in a 3D space. The example NTT uses is a wine store where the prices of the various cuvées on offer are arranged as items floating in space, the cheapest bottles closest to the viewer and the most expensive further away, and spread from left to right by type.

NTT Software's SpaceBrowser

The idea is that, like a chart, SpaceBrowser makes it easier to navigate information in a database. Instead of flipping between a stack of 2D pages, you can see all the items at once, as it were, and select the one you're interested in more quickly.

SpaceBrowser does the same thing with multiple web pages from different sites, as a 3D alternative to tabbed browsing.

The effect is not unlike Mac OS X's Exposé feature, which creates a mosaic of all open windows at the push of a button, allowing you to spot and select the one you want more quickly.

NTT Software's SpaceBrowser

Indeed, SpaceBrowser's 3D view is reminiscent of an Apple research project made public in the mid-1990s, which visualised the web as a fly-through 3D space. Connected websites were represented by linked page icons stacked into the screen, as it were. The code, separately dubbed Project X and HotSauce, was released in 1996 as a plug-in for a existing Mac and PC browsers. The shot comes from Niels Olof Bouvin's Spatial Hypermedia website.

It relied on an Apple-developed data format called MCF (Meta-Content Format), a forerunner to XML. "As HTML is to the displayed page, MCF is to structured content," Apple's then AppleNet division president, Larry Tesler, said at the time.

Apple's HotSauce

Sun's more recent Looking Glass project takes a similar approach and applies it to the desktop, and Microsoft has also tinkered with this kind of thing. Others have too.

Sun's Looking Glass

SpaceBrowser appears to be the first product of its kind to be launched as a commercial product, with NTT claiming it hopes to achieve sales totaling ¥300m ($2.75m) in the first year - or 10,000 copies. ®

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
Google+ goes TITSUP. But WHO knew? How long? Anyone ... Hello ...
Wobbly Gmail, Contacts, Calendar on the other hand ...
UNIX greybeards threaten Debian fork over systemd plan
'Veteran Unix Admins' fear desktop emphasis is betraying open source
Preview redux: Microsoft ships new Windows 10 build with 7,000 changes
Latest bleeding-edge bits borrow Action Center from Windows Phone
Microsoft promises Windows 10 will mean two-factor auth for all
Sneak peek at security features Redmond's baking into new OS
Netscape Navigator - the browser that started it all - turns 20
It was 20 years ago today, Marc Andreeesen taught the band to play
DEATH by PowerPoint: Microsoft warns of 0-day attack hidden in slides
Might put out patch in update, might chuck it out sooner
Redmond top man Satya Nadella: 'Microsoft LOVES Linux'
Open-source 'love' fairly runneth over at cloud event
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.