Feeds

Google ratchets interweb 3D on Windows

Open browser bling for the Microsoft set

Remote control for virtualized desktops

Google has announced a new open source project designed to facilitate the use of WebGL, the browser-based 3D graphics standard floated by Mozilla and the Khronos Group.

Known as the Almost Native Graphics Layer Engine - ANGLE, for short - the project will allow the still-gestating WebGL to work in tandem with Microsoft's DirectX APIs, bringing WebGL to Windows machines otherwise unequipped for it.

WebGL - a means to providing hardware-accelerated 3D inside the browser - is designed to make graphics calls via the OpenGL desktop graphics interface. But as Google product manager Henry Bridge points out in a blog post, Windows machines aren't all that likely to include OpenGL graphics cards. "On Windows," he says, "most graphics-intensive apps use Microsoft Direct3D APIs instead of OpenGL, so OpenGL drivers are not always available.

"Unfortunately, this situation means that even if they have powerful graphics hardware, many Windows machines can't render WebGL content because they don't have the necessary OpenGL drivers installed."

ANGLE will allow Windows users to run WebGL without installing OpenGL drivers. It's meant to layer WebGL's portion of the OpenGL ES 2.0 API over DirectX 9.0c API calls. ANGLE has been released under the BSD license "as an early work in progress," and you can visit the code here.

According to Bridge, the project will implement almost the entire Open ES 2.0 API - not just the WebGL subset - so it may also be a handy tool for developers looking to build mobile and embedded applications. "ANGLE should make it simpler to prototype these applications on Windows," he says, "and also gives developers new options for deploying production versions of their code to the desktop."

WebGL is the brainchild of Mozilla and open standards consortium the Khronos Group, the organization that standardized OpenGL. A WebGL draft was released late last year.

As it champions WebGL, Google is also developing its own hardware-accelerated web 3D setup known as O3D. Whereas WebGL exposes OpenGL calls to JavaScript, O3D operates as a plug-in. Google despises browser plug-ins except when it doesn't. ®

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

More from The Register

next story
Download alert: Nearly ALL top 100 Android, iOS paid apps hacked
Attack of the Clones? Yeah, but much, much scarier – report
NSA SOURCE CODE LEAK: Information slurp tools to appear online
Now you can run your own intelligence agency
Whistling Google: PLEASE! Brussels can only hurt Europe, not us
And Commish is VERY pro-Google. Why should we worry?
Microsoft: Your Linux Docker containers are now OURS to command
New tool lets admins wrangle Linux apps from Windows
Soz, web devs: Google snatches its Wallet off the table
Killing off web service in 3 months... but app-happy bonkers are fine
First in line to order a Nexus 6? AT&T has a BRICK for you
Black Screen of Death plagues early Google-mobe batch
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing and building an open ITOA architecture
Learn about a new IT data taxonomy defined by the four data sources of IT visibility: wire, machine, agent, and synthetic data sets.
5 critical considerations for enterprise cloud backup
Key considerations when evaluating cloud backup solutions to ensure adequate protection security and availability of enterprise data.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Protecting against web application threats using SSL
SSL encryption can protect server‐to‐server communications, client devices, cloud resources, and other endpoints in order to help prevent the risk of data loss and losing customer trust.