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OpenGL Spec Now Controlled by Khronos Group

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 7 years ago | from the passing-the-torch dept.

245

99BottlesOfBeerInMyF writes "According to a recent press release, the OpenGL Architecture Review Board has voted to transfer control of the OpenGL API standard to the Khronos Group, an industry working group that seems mostly known for its focus on mobile applications. Apple Computer has also just joined the group, presumably because of their interest in OpenGL for the OS X platform. I wonder what affect, if any, this will have upon the future development of the OpenGL standard."

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Ha. (0, Flamebait)

Visceral Monkey (583103) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827565)

Well, I'm sure it will benefit Apple a lot and hardly anyone else at all. (See KHMTL and Safari and Konqueror)

Re:Ha. (1)

outZider (165286) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827620)

It almost sounds like you believe Apple doesn't generally give anything back.

Re:Ha. (1, Informative)

portmapper (991533) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827678)

Apple is not exactly known for beeing open, except as a markteing stunt.
Dunno why Drawin decided to call quits ;-)

Re:Ha. (1, Offtopic)

outZider (165286) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827749)

Darwin's still active. The outside project, OpenDarwin, called it quits for a variety of reasons. The only thing in question is the ability to build an X86 kernel, which was rumored to have been killed off, but isn't necessarily the case -- they're just trying to figure out where that middle ground is to avoid pirating of the Intel version of OS X.

That whole thing is really dumb, IMHO.

But with regard to the KonquerorWebKit issue, that was a big deal long ago, but with the cross patches and open subversion repository, a lot of that rift has been taken care of. Apple could always be more open, but they aren't doing a terrible job.

CAN WE PLEASE NOT HAVE THIS DISCUSSION?! (4, Insightful)

mrchaotica (681592) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827671)

Whether Apple contributes back to Free Software isn't really relevant here, and it's been beaten to death in other threads already. Could we please save it for the next KHTML article, at least?!

Besides, the more relevant thing regarding Apple is their behavior regarding other standards (as opposed to software implementations), such as USB, WebDAV, ZeroConf (aka Rendesvous, Bonjour), etc.

Re:CAN WE PLEASE NOT HAVE THIS DISCUSSION?! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15827961)

You really need to get laid

(offtopic) (1)

mrchaotica (681592) | more than 7 years ago | (#15828049)

I agree -- four days is a long time! Luckily, my girlfriend will be back from out-of-town thursday...

/posted without karma or subscriber bonus

Re:(offtopic) (-1, Offtopic)

orasio (188021) | more than 7 years ago | (#15828185)

Great, you have a girlfriend!! Admirable.
And you got some last week!!
She is probably getting a lot more than you are, even as we speak, so don't brag about it.

Re:(offtopic) (0, Offtopic)

mrchaotica (681592) | more than 7 years ago | (#15828233)

Hey, I wasn't bragging to you -- I made every effort to make it inconspicuous, so that only the AC I was replying to (who apparently did care) would read it.

Re:Ha. (0, Offtopic)

0racle (667029) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827672)

Ya, it sucks that Apple never gave anything back. Oh wait, yes they did.

Re:Ha. (0, Offtopic)

aristotle-dude (626586) | more than 7 years ago | (#15828301)

Apple worked with KHTML developers to merge in some changes from Webkit back into KHTML and they released Webkit as open source which Nokia picked up and implemented into their products.

ITM effects. (0, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15827575)

Jesus fucking GOD how hard is it?

Affect == verb. "I am affecting you with my fist in your fat fucking face".

Effect == noun "Blood and broken bones were amongst the effects of my fist in your fat fucking face."

EXCEPT WHERE

Affect == Noun meaning EMOTION.

Re:ITM effects. (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15827586)

+1 - spelling and grammar count...

Re:ITM effects. (0)

JebusIsLord (566856) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827686)

Actually, that is pretty complicated...

Re:ITM effects. (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15827702)

yeah. English is one of the stupidest, hardest to understand, 2 exceptions to every rule, illogical language there is. And some people pride themselves on mastering it.

Being good at english is the equivalent of memorizing a random number as far as im concerned, worthless.

Re:ITM effects. (1)

EvanED (569694) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827835)

Except almost no one uses 'affect' as a noun (and those that do are not likely to mess it up), so even if you always go with affect=verb, effect=noun, you'll still do a lot better than if you just randomly pick on.

(Effect as a verb is a bit more common, but I still hold to what I see above. And when used as a verb, effect is almost always followed by "change".)

Re:ITM effects. (1)

EvanED (569694) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827891)

D'oh...

s/pick on/pick one and /I see above/I say above.

I guess I'm a bit more tired than I thought...

Re:ITM effects. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15827848)

All languages have their quirks and silly rules. English is hardly unique in that respect. As a writer, I've found English to be a fascinating language, largely because of its many oddities. It allows for a degree of flexibility not found in some languages. It also entails a steeper learning curve.

That said, there's nothing to be gained by beating people over the head with the more arcane rules or confusing aspects of the language or vocabulary. If your grasp of the language is developed enough for clear communication, that should be good enough. Time is money.

Re:ITM effects. (1)

PitaBred (632671) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827877)

It's also one of the most powerfully descriptive languages there is. There is no way to show the nuances in most other languages that is possible in english (when the speaker has an adequate command of the language).

Re:ITM effects. (1)

WhiteWolf666 (145211) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827984)

Why would you say that?

I speak three languages, and was raised biligually. I would say that English is (barely) my native tongue, but I don't see any particular reason why English is an order of magnitude more nuanced than other languages.

As far as I know, its more accurate to define languages as particularly good or particularly poor at expressing details on a certain topic.

Tea, for example, is best discussed in Japanese, Science is primarily English, while Latin would be the appropriate language for Western Morality/Christanity.

Obviously, Arabic is the primary language for discussion of the Koran, and I hear that Inuit is superbly constructed for discussion of the weather.

Of course, maybe you were sarcastic, in which case I have been trolled.

Re:ITM effects. (1)

Durandal64 (658649) | more than 7 years ago | (#15828130)

Well, I'm no authority on the issue, but from what I understand, English is incredibly versatile in terms of its vocabulary. For example, English is the only language that lets you splice a word into a another word and still have it make sense, like "abso-fucking-lutely". As far as I know, no other language has this capability.

Re:ITM effects. (1)

Bogtha (906264) | more than 7 years ago | (#15828265)

You're wrong about that - Infix [wikipedia.org] :

An infix is an affix inserted inside another morpheme. This is not uncommon in Austronesian and Austroasiatic languages. For example, the Tagalog language has borrowed the English word graduate as a verb. In this language, a grammatical form similar to the active voice is formed by adding the infix -um- to the first syllable of a verb, so a speaker saying "I graduated" uses the derived form grumaduate. The Semitic languages have a form of ablaut (changing the vowels within words, as in English sing, sang, sung, song) which is sometimes called infixation, but there is often no identifiable infix common across the vocabulary.

English has very few infixes, and those it does have are marginal. A few are heard in colloquial speech, and a couple more are found in technical terminology.

Re:ITM effects. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15828304)

This is just a shot in the dark. I'm guessing that English is more widespread, has been so for a longer time, and has as a foundation a wider base of ancestral languages than most other languages.

It is the combination of these three factors that gives English a greater breadth of possible vocabulary and subtle nuances when compared in an overall fashion. There are certainly exceptions when a language has a very developed set of 'jargon' regarding a certain topic, as with your tea example, but if you were looking for generic adjectives etc to describe the tea, English could provide many options, even without standardized terms for a certain type of tea.

Re:ITM effects. (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 7 years ago | (#15828054)

Being good at english is the equivalent of memorizing a random number as far as im concerned, worthless.

Okay, I agree that English is a big piece of shit, and it's literally the only human language I speak. (computer languages don't count) But... it's highly useful. How long that will last is a great question; Once upon a time the whole fucking world spoke Greek, well into Roman civilization, because it was the language of the learned. Later, it was French; later, science went somewhat German. Now, it's all English whether it's science or engineering or even just commerce in a lot of places (although commerce is covered by many different languages depending on region.) Just about anywhere you go in Europe, for example, you can find someone who speaks English.

Re:ITM effects. (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15828243)

dinkypoo, you seem to have forgotten Asia. China at no time spoke Greek.

Effect as verb (3, Insightful)

WilliamSChips (793741) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827706)

can also mean to bring into existence.

Re:Effect as verb (1)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 7 years ago | (#15828062)

can also mean to bring into existence.
Yep. As in "Linus Torvalds effected change in the open source development process."

Pretty hard, I guess.... (3, Funny)

Dcnjoe60 (682885) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827980)

Jesus fucking GOD how hard is it?

It amazes me that you have such a grasp of the use of "affect" and "effect" but don't seem to grasp that the word "fucking" should only be used as a verb or adverb and not an adjective. Unless your really meant to express that Jesus is copulating with God, which to answer your question, would seem to be pretty hard to do.

Re:Pretty hard, I guess.... (0, Offtopic)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 7 years ago | (#15828075)

Unless your really meant to express that Jesus is copulating with God, which to answer your question, would seem to be pretty hard to do.

Psst, "you"!

On the serious tip, though, one of the things that was hammered out by council during the holy roman empire of Constantine II was the nature of God. It was decided at the council of Nicea that God was a holy trinity, he was at once the father, the son, and the holy ghost. They also decided (I think at a separate, slightly later council) that Jesus is both fully human and fully divine. That's right, he's 100% this, and 100% that, which means he's 200% Jesus. Anyway, I digress... the point is that since he is both three and one, he can have a threesome with himself if he can find a way to fuck a spirit.

Oh and "fucking" is very commonly used as an adjective, and although "fucked" might be more appropriate it is definitely a permanent part of the English language at this point. If you go far enough back in time to where the authorities on language would agree with you, they'd probably also want to stone you to death for egregious use of the word while you tried to discuss it with them.

In the interest of meta-meta-nitpicking... (2, Informative)

Alef (605149) | more than 7 years ago | (#15828099)

From here [reference.com] :


fucking Pronunciation Key (fkng) Vulgar Slang
adv. & adj.
Used as an intensive.

Re:In the interest of meta-meta-nitpicking... (2, Informative)

hackstraw (262471) | more than 7 years ago | (#15828288)


Too bad there is no Top Web results for "fucking" [reference.com] .

What is this world coming to?

Re:Pretty hard, I guess.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15828198)

the word "fucking" should only be used as a verb or adverb and not an adjective.

Firstly, according to whom? Secondly, it's not being used as an adjective in this case, it's being used as an infix.

Re:ITM effects. (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 7 years ago | (#15828020)

An english rule with an exception? say it isn't so!

What is the emotional affect this sentence will affect on the way you affect your affection for the slashdot affect.

Hard or limb? (1)

Sigg3.net (886486) | more than 7 years ago | (#15828245)

Jesus fucking GOD how hard is it?

Depends on Jesus' relationship with His Father, I'd say.

Kronos? (4, Funny)

Eideewt (603267) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827576)

I can't believe I saw this and thought we were talking about Klingons until my brain caught up.

Re:Kronos? (0, Offtopic)

(TK2)Dessimat0r (669581) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827615)

Shut the fuck up you fat fucking piece of kike shit.

Re:Kronos? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15827755)

Idiot.

Re:Kronos? (5, Funny)

andphi (899406) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827801)

That would be the Q'onos group, you spineless p'taq!

BTW, I included the "spineless p'taq" comment in order to keep with the theme, not because I'm trying to be insulting. I think of it as an "insensitive clod" joke, only with more glory and honor. Qapla!

Joy, Sorrow? (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15827585)

I can't make up my mind what affect it will have ...

Re:Joy, Sorrow? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15827763)

the thoughts and effectations of apple aside... /me ducks and runs

Great! (3, Insightful)

Gr8Apes (679165) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827588)

Anything that helps OpenGL and provides drivers for it will be welcome. May it prod developers to write more OpenGL games (mainly) and thus make porting easier.

What "affect" ** (4, Insightful)

just_another_sean (919159) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827609)

I wonder what affect, if any, this will have upon the future development of the OpenGL standard.

Well reading TFA and not finding Microsoft on either their promoters [khronos.org] page or their contributors [khronos.org] page I'm cautiously optimistic.

** affect? effect? I can never keep this one straight either.

Re:What "affect" ** (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15827655)

Affect as a noun means "emotional bond" I think. As a verb it means "has effect on" sorta.

You can look it up here (cause I didn't): http://www.wsu.edu/~brians/errors/errors.html [wsu.edu] It's a list of common errors in English. Good stuff.

Re:What "affect" ** (1)

glwtta (532858) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827743)

It's a list of common errors in English.

Don't they just call that the Slashdot front page? (swish)

Seriously though, affect/effect is just about the best known common error - how hard is it to pay attention when you post? What's next, confusing then and than?

of course... (4, Informative)

everphilski (877346) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827704)

... Because this is a direct competitor to DirectX.

Although Microsoft has not been openly hostile. They distribute OpenGL with Windows. And although there are concerns that they are "crippling" the implementation they are shipping with Vista (of which I, personally, am skeptical), hardware vendors ATI and nVidia will be shipping the latest versions with their cards.

Re: Someone doesn't know OpenGL's history (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15827892)

http://www.vcnet.com/bms/features/3d.html [vcnet.com]

I haven't read it, but it looks basically the same as the stuff I've read before on how Microsoft crushed OpenGL, even though DirectX was much worse at the time.

Re:of course... (2, Informative)

ProfanityHead (198878) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827989)

They DO NOT distribute opengl with XP. They distributed a D3D wrapper that ran opengl apps crappily.
It was up to the user to download proprietary drivers for their brand of video card.

Re:of course... (1)

Assmasher (456699) | more than 7 years ago | (#15828085)

I'm sorry but the OpenGL model on Windows is an ICD. The default Windows XP for my system shipped with a WHQL nVidia driver (my machine had an nVidia card) that installed and I had OpenGL via the ICD immediately. I didn't have to go anywhere and download anything. This was an install right off the Microsoft CD. Microsoft provides a spec for D3D9 (for example) and hardware vendors implement that themselves, NOT Microsoft. Microsoft does NOT provide the spec for OpenGL, and hardware vendors implement that themselves, NOT Microsoft.

There's enough wrong with Microsoft to avoid FUD like that.

Re:of course... (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 7 years ago | (#15828097)

Uh, they distributed OpenGL with NT4 and Windows 2000, without any 3d acceleration. Microsoft provided a full and compliant (to whatever version) software implementation of OpenGL at least since NT 3.51, the first version I ever used. Actually, I think it was the last version worth a shit, too, but it doesn't support modern hardware so it wouldn't be an option even if you could get programs to run on it :/

It's total news to me that the OpenGL layer in XP even has acceleration, not that I don't believe you, I just don't see why they'd bother when anything with 3d acceleration comes with an OpenGL driver - at least, these days.

Re:of course... (1)

packeteer (566398) | more than 7 years ago | (#15828283)

OpenGL on vista will be running on TOP of DirectX. This means that DirectX will EMULATE opengl although this process in reverse is possible with very little efficiency lost. As an example check out the cedaga project that ports directx games to linux using opengl.

Re:What "affect" ** (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15827720)

affect = verb
effect = noun

I affected the research by changing the variables, then noted the effects in my scrapbook.

Re:What "affect" ** (1)

Abcd1234 (188840) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827770)

Alternatively, you effected a change in the research by modifying the variables.

For a complete treatment of the subject, read this [teachersfirst.com] .

Re:What "affect" ** (1)

nine-times (778537) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827780)

Actually "effect" and "affect" can both be either a verb or a noun. This is off-topic, of course, but these words are geniunely confusing. The way we use 'affect' as a verb sometimes seems to have more to with the noun 'effect' than either the verb 'effect' has to do with the noun 'effect' or the verb 'affect' has to do with the noun 'affect'. However, they aren't really connected linguistically (at least as far as I'm aware).

In fact, you can effect an effect, affect an affect, effect an affect, or affect and effect. It's all a bit strange, so I don't blame people for getting them mixed up.

Google also a member (4, Insightful)

Foofoobar (318279) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827632)

If you look at the list of Members you will also spot Panasonic, Toshiba, Softimage, NCSoft and alot of other heavy hitters.

The fact that Google and Apple are involved gives me hope that people will start making applications for Linux and Macs soon. Also, since DirectX 10 is only available for Vista, this may be the prime time for OpenGL to start stealing some market share.

Re:Google also a member (4, Insightful)

Quarters (18322) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827741)

Also, since DirectX 10 is only available for Vista, this may be the prime time for OpenGL to start stealing some market share.

What would be so different about the exclusivity of DX10 on Vista as opposed to the exclusivity of DXs 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, and 9 on Win 95, 98, NT (DX3 only), 2K, and XP that makes now the proper time for OpenGL to become dominant?

DX wins out in terms of "market share" (as if an API can be measured against something like that) becuase of two things...the dominance of Windows in the marketplace and the fact that DirectX has pretty much wiped the floor with OpenGL when it comes to support for contemporary rendering hardware features. Extensions be damned, the OpenGL ARB moves *way* to slowly to be competitive. Maybe the Khronos group will help with that...Lord knows they can't be any worse.

Will OpenGL have a ratified spec for equivilent DX10 features like geometry shaders by the time DX 10 comes out?

Re:Google also a member (1, Troll)

Foofoobar (318279) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827788)

What would be so different about the exclusivity of DX10 on Vista as opposed to the exclusivity of DXs 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, and 9 on Win 95, 98, NT (DX3 only), 2K, and XP that makes now the proper time for OpenGL to become dominant?

The difference would be that none of them REQUIRED you to update all your hardware in order to run it. DX10 requires it. Vista requires it. The Monitor DRM requires it.

As such, adoption of DirectX10 may be a long time coming. Sure hardcore gamers will probably get a new machine but most everyone else will wait until at least SP1. Until SP1 is released, alow of manufacturers won't put out games that support DX10 unless they also support DX9 as well. To do elsewise would be to limit their market.

Re:Google also a member (1)

Poltras (680608) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827862)

Backward compatibility kills a lot these days, don't you think? Time to move forward with OpenGL, and that's what they did mostly for 2.0. Hope it doesn't stop in mid-run as 1.x did before...

Re:Google also a member (4, Informative)

Quarters (18322) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827916)

The difference would be that none of them REQUIRED you to update all your hardware in order to run it. DX10 requires it. Vista requires it.

All of them required you to update if you wanted to use the features. You can't run a DX9 app on DX3 hardware and get the advantages of DX. The necessary transistors aren't on the DX3 board. There's nothing different on the OpenGL side. To run OpenGL 1.x along with you *need* given board. If you don't have it the extension won't work.

Vista does not require DX10. It runs just fine under DX9. It will ship with both DX9 and DX10. The UI rendering layer is not DX10 specific. I've run Vista on a two year old machine with integrated Intel graphics (pixel shader 2.x, vertex shaders handled by the CPU) and Vista worked 100%, including Aero Glass.

Re:Google also a member (1)

Quarters (18322) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827951)

Dang, lost formatting. Why doesn't Slashdot have post editing? Anyway, the line, "To run OpenGL 1.x along with you *need* given board. If you don't have it the extension won't work." should read:

To run OpenGL 1.x along with a given extension that exposes a feature on a given board you need that board installed. If you don't have it the extension won't work in hardware.

Re:Google also a member (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 7 years ago | (#15828114)

Dang, lost formatting. Why doesn't Slashdot have post editing?

Because it would break both the flow of conversations and the moderation system entirely?

This one should be intuitively obvious to pretty much anyone. Frankly, I don't think ANY message base systems should allow comment editing.

Re:Google also a member (1, Insightful)

Foofoobar (318279) | more than 7 years ago | (#15828048)

All of them required you to update if you wanted to use the features.


Funny. Didn't have to update my Win98 box to move to Win2k. Just needed more RAM.

Didn't have to update my Win2K to move to XP.

So by all of them... were you talking only Vista or were you merely talking outta your ass?

Re:Google also a member (1)

MendicantMonkey (649859) | more than 7 years ago | (#15828127)

The poster should have been more specific, but I understood him to mean the DirectX versions, not the Windows versions.

Not my fault! (2, Funny)

The-Bus (138060) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827638)

If this doesn't come out favorably, don't blame me!

I voted for Kodos.

Re:Not my fault! (1)

Midnight Thunder (17205) | more than 7 years ago | (#15828210)

I voted for Kodos.

Well, kudos to you :)

Good -- maybe now it will progress faster! (4, Insightful)

mrchaotica (681592) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827645)

Part of the reason Direct3D took off (aside from Microsoft's market influence) is that the ARB worked too damn slow and caused OpenGL to lag behind in terms of capability. If Khronos can make decisions faster such that OpenGL can keep feature parity with (or even get ahead of) Direct3D, it'll be great!

It would also probably help if they form close ties with the people making OpenAL, SDL, etc. so that there can be a big, open, complete solution to compete with the whole of DirectX.

They need to partner with video card companies (1)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827688)

That's another powerful force with DirectX is that MS goes and talks with people like nVidia and ATi and finds out what they want out of an API. So not only is DX updated frequently, but it gets the updates that the companies want generally.

Re:They need to partner with video card companies (2, Interesting)

earbenT (992594) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827742)

NVIDIA and ATI are both members of the ARB as well.

Re:They need to partner with video card companies (1)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827810)

Well that's good, provided people listen to them. Just "normal members with a vote like anyone else" doesn't really cut it. They start developing new graphics cards long before they ever hit the market, and as time goes on with a design, there's little they can change. So the ARB needs to be receptive to what they are rolling out. If they decide that a given new feature is the way to go, it needs to be implemented quickly. That's not to say the dialogue can't flow the other way as well, OS/game makers deciding on the kinds of interfaces they need which are added and nVidia and ATi figure out how to make their drivers work with those, but when it comes to new hardware capabilities, the API needs to support them.

Re:They need to partner with video card companies (1)

WhiteWolf666 (145211) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827943)

AFAIK, the vast majority of OpenGL development done recently has been extensions developed by ATI and Nvidia, and then eventually standarized.

Re:They need to partner with video card companies (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 7 years ago | (#15828227)

This is totally true but it's been going on longer than that. We got the multitexture extension from 3dfx, for example. SGI was actually working on it, but they were taking their sweet-ass time, so 3dfx went ahead and implemented as much of SGIS_multitexture as they could conveniently do, and as they needed, and it was used in glquake with the 3dfx minigl driver. Of course, they should have named it something else, since it wasn't the full function. MesaGL also calls it EXT_multitexture since only SGI should make extensions starting with SGIS_. Now there's an official ARB_multitexture...

Re:They need to partner with video card companies (1)

jsproul (4589) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827785)

This is an important point commercially, but it's not just NVIDIA and ATI. You have to think about the whole "ecosystem". The GPU vendors have an interest in driving people to buy the latest and greatest chips. Quality and speed only go so far with consumer applications; at some point you need to add features. Those features are only interesting if games developers can use them to create new titles that people will buy. Thus, the API vendor or standards body needs to work with both communities to develop and share new ideas for hardware features that can be applied as easily as possible into new games.

Of course, the workstation market - where OpenGL is still king - is a different beast. Stability, quality, and performance are critical, in that order, and new features are generally adopted quite slowly.

I'm not an expert on OpenGL and DirectX, so I'll leave it to others to dissect whether the same API can really serve both markets.

Maybe OpenGL and DirectX need to diverge (1)

alphabetsoup (953829) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827884)

OpenGL was traditionally aimed at enterprises and workstations. There you need a stable platform. So new features tend to get added slowly. On the other hand, DirectX is aimed towards the gaming market. Here the pace of development is hectic. The pace of development of DirectX also supports that. New features get added very fast. Microsoft being a single entity can also introduce changes much faster than a board controlled OpenGL can. The problem with OpenGL is that it is now trying to do what DirectX does. But it was never intended to be an API for games, or to be changed frequently. It is becoming something in the middle, neither here nor there,evolving too slowly for games and too fast for workstations. Maybe the two just need to diverge, with OpenGL returning to what it was intended for - enterprise apps, while leaving DirectX to cater to the games market.

Re:Maybe OpenGL and DirectX need to diverge (1)

Lehk228 (705449) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827941)

there is no reason openGL cannot be a two part API, very reliable and simpler interfaces for industrial use and less stable gaming focused interfaces for non critical things that need to be bleeding edge new

Re:Maybe OpenGL and DirectX need to diverge (4, Insightful)

mrchaotica (681592) | more than 7 years ago | (#15828106)

Maybe the two just need to diverge, with OpenGL returning to what it was intended for - enterprise apps, while leaving DirectX to cater to the games market.

The problem with that is that DirectX isn't a standard -- it's a proprietary Microsoft technology. We'd still need a standard to use for gaming on Mac, Linux, PS3, Wii, etc.

FYI (3, Interesting)

earbenT (992594) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827662)

Sony is also a member of the consortium, and is providing the API suite as part of the PS3 development kit.

Should assure future of OpenGL for a while (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15827677)

Khronos *already* handled most OpenGL related specs, like OpenGL ES.

On the negative side, this probably means that yes, SGI is going to be asset-stripped and wound up in short order. One must remember that the writing was on the wall a long time ago. Like CBM before them, Microsoft placed a "mole" in an executive position to wreak havoc, and SGI never really recovered from that period of moronic rebranding and windows NT workstations.

COLLADA (4, Informative)

99BottlesOfBeerInMyF (813746) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827683)

I did a little more looking after submitting this article and while I was not familiar with the Khronos group's work aside from mobile applications, it seems they are also responsible for the COLLADA standard Sony is promoting for open exchange of graphics/models primarily for video games. Perhaps with OpenGL, COLLADA, and some multimedia standards all under the same roof, we'll see development directed to be a better alternative to OpenGL aimed at multiple platforms (Windows, PS3, Mac, and Nintendo?) to offset the threat of MS's DirectX development aimed at Windows and Xbox simultaneously.

Hopefully this will be good for OpenGL (1)

Eravnrekaree (467752) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827707)

Hopefully this will mean there will be continued improvements to OpenGL, especially to keep up with competing microsoft products. OpenGL should provide cross platform compatability so these apps can run with few modifications on many platforms. Microsoft unfortunately, just cant have this and has been pushing its own technologies and neglecting OpenGL, which is a move designed to lock software onto the windows platform. Microsoft of course cannot tolerate competitition and cohabitating in the marketplace with others, it has to have it all for itself and will use anti-competitive tactics to prevent compatability between different OSs.

This might be good (2, Interesting)

pestilence669 (823950) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827712)

OpenGL has been stagnate for quite some time. Most of the newer features of 3D cards have only been accessible with their horrible extensions interface. Well, it's not horrible, but it's not ideal either. At a minimum, better support for pixel shaders (nearly a decade old feature) is much desired. Better support for NURBS & subdivision surfaces (without using evaluators) would rock. I doubt that things like this are on the agenda.

OpenGL, IMHO, has no place on mobile phones... not yet anyway. Poor Java stacks, pathetic amounts of RAM, and CPU's slower than my TI-82 calculator make phones a questionable 3D platform. How on earth can OpenGL grow if it always has to support the lowest common denominator.

I'd hate to see the focus change toward embedded systems and not have enough energy dedicated toward advancing desktop development, where OpenGL has a very important role. Outside of DirectX, it's the only game in town... especially on the Mac & Linux.

I write all of my 3D apps on top of OpenGL, so this decision is very important to me. I like that OpenGL will finally get some much needed attention, I just hope it's the kind that benefits me... not just teenagers and their cell phones.

Re:This might be good (4, Interesting)

99BottlesOfBeerInMyF (813746) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827753)

OpenGL, IMHO, has no place on mobile phones... not yet anyway... How on earth can OpenGL grow if it always has to support the lowest common denominator.

I agree. Since Khronos already maintains OpenGL ES for phones, hopefully they will not unify them.

Re:This might be good (2, Informative)

modeless (978411) | more than 7 years ago | (#15828120)

In fact, OpenGL ES is also used in the PS3, which is hardly the lowest common denominator of graphics. Turns out that OpenGL ES mostly removes all the obsolete and irrelevant cruft that OpenGL has, while keeping the important modern stuff like shaders. It provides a simpler, more streamlined interface that is more appropriate for pushing polygons on modern hardware in both the low-end and the high-end.

Re:This might be good (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15827832)

OpenGL hasn't been stagnant - all the new hardware features are available in OpenGL 2.0. The problem is that 2.0 isn't supported very much yet, so people don't use it (I believe Windows is a big reason for that, but I'm not sure of the details).

Re:This might be good (2)

mrchaotica (681592) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827837)

CPU's slower than my TI-82 calculator

Unless your calculator is vastly different than the ones I'm familiar with, that's a bit of an exaggeration, don't you think?

Re:This might be good (2, Informative)

forkazoo (138186) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827852)

OpenGL has been stagnate for quite some time. Most of the newer features of 3D cards have only been accessible with their horrible extensions interface. Well, it's not horrible, but it's not ideal either. At a minimum, better support for pixel shaders (nearly a decade old feature) is much desired. Better support for NURBS & subdivision surfaces (without using evaluators) would rock. I doubt that things like this are on the agenda.


How much better support for pixel shaders do you want? glsl is a quite nice shading language. I agree that it would be nice to see direct support for curved surfaces. But, the hardware doesn't really support them either, so it's going to be hard to get NURBS supported directly by OpenGL any time soon...

As for the highest end features being accessible thorugh extensions... Isn't that better than them being completely unavailable until a new version comes out? How do your propose a vendor exposes some whizzy new functionality?

Re:This might be good (1)

pestilence669 (823950) | more than 7 years ago | (#15828014)

No, NURBS aren't supported in hardware, but bezier patches are. It would be great if OpenGL supported them as well as some chipsets do. You can't do everything with bezier curves that you can do with NURBS, but you can get pretty darn close.

Granted, OpenGL extensions aren't that bad, for the reasons you cited. I'm just tired of supporting ATI-specific *and* Nvidia-specific extensions. The vendor-specific junk has got to go.

Re:This might be good (2, Interesting)

forkazoo (138186) | more than 7 years ago | (#15828066)

No, NURBS aren't supported in hardware, but bezier patches are. It would be great if OpenGL supported them as well as some chipsets do. You can't do everything with bezier curves that you can do with NURBS, but you can get pretty darn close.

I've been reading about some of the proposals for "OpenGL 3.0." Apparently, there is talk of a "primitive shader." Haven't been able to find much information about it yet, but it may well allow arbitrary curved surfaces defined by shaders. I could also just be reading too much into what I've read...

Granted, OpenGL extensions aren't that bad, for the reasons you cited. I'm just tired of supporting ATI-specific *and* Nvidia-specific extensions. The vendor-specific junk has got to go.

I feel your pain. However, fortunately the vendor-specific-junk *does* go. Sometimes it takes a little while, but it all works pretty well. With Direct X, you don't get any access to new features until MS decides on a release. Then, they change a lot in the next release, etc. So, instead of having a way to do things for each vendor, you have a way to do things for each version. OpenGL takes the opposite route. Once it gets rolled into the standard, it will be quite stable. I don't think either solution is much worse than the other, but I do prefer the OpenGL way.

Anyhow, check this out and ponder OpenGL 3.0... ;)
http://www.gamedev.net/columns/events/gdc2006/arti cle.asp?id=233 [gamedev.net]

Re:This might be good (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15827933)

I'm not understanding how pixel shader support is lacking. GLSL is part of the OpenGL 2.0 Standard, which has been around for awhile. It's just as good as Cg, HLSL, or Renderman. If you haven't already, pick up the OpenGL Orange Book (on shaders/GLSL) by Randy Rost. It's a good walkthrough of GLSL.

looks like you can have some of your wish... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15827966)

...they've at least promoted programmable shaders to core features:

http://www.opengl.org/documentation/current_versio n/ [opengl.org]

Increased Costs (1)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827729)

Now you wil have to be a member to even see the standard. Even more $ to be certified.

SGI was considering it an asset to sell. (1)

PSargent (188923) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827786)

I saw a story recently that seemed like SGI was considering OpenGL to be one of it's few remaining pieces of IP that it could sell off. I'm not sure how true that was (centainly they own various patents which are licensed to OpenGL implementors), but I expect this is a move to try to get it out of the car wreck that is going to be SGI soon.

A shame it has to be done, but probably a good thing.

My money is on nVidia buying up the IP once SGI is gone (ala 3Dfx)

yuo FaiL It?! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15827860)

Some notes to people that may not know a whole lot (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15827912)

!. Direct3D vs OpenGL:

Doesn't realy matter, for a couple reasons:
Only games are written using Direct3D/DirectX. It is very rarely used for anything beyond that. If given a choice no developer would ever use Direct3d for anything.. but if your making games for technically challenged people and your target platform is Windows then writing it to use Direct3D/directX makes more sense since it's more likely to work well in Windows.

All the major gaming engines already run on Linux. They already run using either OpenGL or Direct3D.. All except HL2/Steam stuff.

The reason Linux doesn't have more games isn't because of DirectX. It's because of lack of ease of use for OpenGL acceleration and market share.

Also DirectX/Direct3d is tied directly to the hardware. If your card doesn't support DirectX 9 your not going to be able to run DirectX 9 application.

For OpenGL it doesn't work that way. It's a programming API that can be accelerated. If you have a card that was designed to accelerate OpenGL 1.x you can still run OpenGL 2.x. It just won't all be hardware accelerated.

If your programming a 3d application and it's not a game and your not Microsoft.. Then your using OpenGL or OpenGL-based system. Period, end of story.

2. OpenGL ARB is 'Advanced Review Board'. They create a set of extensions to the current OpenGL standard to create proven/established OpenGL-related stuff that they can then wrap up together and place into the next generation OpenGL standard.

This is were all that extra stuff goes that people say that OpenGL lacks and DirectX has. OpenGL has a much more formal review system then DirectX/3D has. It needs to be carefull as any standard they create will need to be replicated by multiple people on multiple platforms and be sustainable into the forseeable future.

Microsoft and Direct3D/DirectX doesn't have to deal with that. They can abtrarially make decisions becasue they only have to worry about one platform.

3. Kronos group is partially responsable for the OpenGL-EGL extensions which allow for easier OpenGL based displays for embedded devices.

This is required for a stand-alone XGL-based X Windows server. Current AIGLX (Redhat) and XGLX (Novel) require you to either run a OpenGL-based X server on top of a normal X server (XGLX) or run OpenGL extensions to a normal X server (AIGLX).

This approach has numerious issues. Instead of making a clean break and going with pure OpenGL system your dealing with multiple legacy drivers that can only do a fraction of what OpenGL can do in addition to OpenGL acceleration drivers.

To put it another way.. The current driver model for X is broken. Right now we have 2-3 drivers acting on the same video card at the same time and they need to share resources. These drivers come from different vendors. This is technically difficult and doesn't lead to good acceleration or performance.

Another point:
Legacy 2D X drivers (EXA, XAA) can only provide 2D acceleration.
OpenGL 3d drivers can provide 2D AND 3D acceleration.
OpenGL 3d drivers can provide faster 2D acceleration then what the legacy 2D drivers can do. (due to the nature of the hardware GPU, not so much the drivers)
Having 2D and 3D drivers at the same time makes things much more complecated then just having 3D that can do everything.
3D acceleration is a hard requirement for a modern desktop.

So obviously having OpenGL-based X server is the way to go. And stuff like GLITZ (Xrender replacement) and other things means we can move to a pure OpenGL X server and still keep binary compatability. It's quite a acheivement.

Now the reason we cna't have a pure OpenGL-based display yet is because OpenGL lacks the API hooks to allow you to control the display and other items like that. There is nothing in OpenGL that says "Set the monitor at this resolution". That has to be handled by other stuff.

Kronos had to solve this same exact problem for it's embedded OpenGL display stuff. So they created the OpenGL-EGL stuff that strips down OpenGL to fit embedded systems better, AND (the part that is relativent to X) they created API for doing display control.

So X developers want to take the parts that control the display and incorporate them into the OpenGL standard. That way we can get driver support for Xegl which is the current experimental stand-alone OpenGL X server from the X.org folks.

Kronos getting control of the ARB will hopefully be a big boon for standalone OpenGL-based X windows.

Re:Some notes to people that may not know a whole (1)

JustNiz (692889) | more than 7 years ago | (#15828123)

>> but if your making games
>> your not going to be able to run DirectX 9
>> If your programming a 3d

Dude, your is actually spelt you're.

Re:Some notes to people that may not know a whole (1)

Ash-Fox (726320) | more than 7 years ago | (#15828237)

All the major gaming engines already run on Linux. They already run using either OpenGL or Direct3D.. All except HL2/Steam stuff.
HL2/Steam does run under Wine just fine, however.
Also DirectX/Direct3d is tied directly to the hardware. If your card doesn't support DirectX 9 your not going to be able to run DirectX 9 application.
Wine certainly proved you wrong here, since it 'translates' DirectX stuff to OpenGL shaders etc.

Re:Some notes to people that may not know a whole (1)

SirTalon42 (751509) | more than 7 years ago | (#15828278)

HL2/Steam does run under Wine just fine, however.


Ok, then a better way to word it would be: HL2/Steam stuff only runs on Win32 (Wine is a Win32/etc layer for linux).

Wine certainly proved you wrong here, since it 'translates' DirectX stuff to OpenGL shaders etc.

Microsoft's DirectX/Direct3d implementation (the official one) is tied directly to the hardware. He never said it would be impossible to make an implementation that wasn't.

Re:Some notes to people that may not know a whole (2, Insightful)

LionMage (318500) | more than 7 years ago | (#15828250)

A couple clarifications/corrections:

Also DirectX/Direct3d is tied directly to the hardware. If your card doesn't support DirectX 9 your [sic] not going to be able to run DirectX 9 application.
Besides the spelling gaffe (your is the possessive of you, you're is a contraction of "you are"), this statement is not 100% correct. DirectX/Direct3D developers can mandate that certain API features are handled in hardware in order for the application to run, but they can just as easily allow DirectX to emulate in software what is not implemented in hardware. It's just that, for performance and usability reasons, most game developers don't want to allow DirectX to let the CPU handle certain things. So really, the practical difference between DirectX and OpenGL here is nil.

Since OpenGL is used for much more than just games, and since it's not as tightly tied to hardware specifications, it is more likely that OpenGL applications will tolerate missing hardware acceleration for some features. Having said that, I know there's a mechanism for programmatically determining which extensions an OpenGL implementation supports; what I don't know is whether you can easily detect if a particular feature is hardware accelerated or not. (I suspect the answer is yes, since there are still game developers out there who write to OpenGL.)

OpenGL ARB is 'Advanced Review Board'. They create a set of extensions to the current OpenGL standard to create proven/established OpenGL-related stuff that they can then wrap up together and place into the next generation OpenGL standard.
Actually, ARB stands for "Architecture Review Board." But the rest of what you said about the ARB is pretty accurate.

Re:Some notes to people that may not know a whole (4, Informative)

Assmasher (456699) | more than 7 years ago | (#15828269)

(1)Ironically, you yourself appear to "not know a whole lot." There are several reasons that developers use D3D over OpenGL. Personally, if I need cross platform, for example Sense8's WorldToolKit back when I used to work there, I used OpenGL. If I need multi-monitor and/or multi-device hardware acceleration on anything other than an upper end SGI, like what I currently work on, I HAVE to use DirectX9/10 and Win32. There are other reasons to prefer D3D over OpenGL but they are somewhat subjective (i.e. some people absolutely detest the extensions mechanism in OpenGL for example while others don't really care.) Some people like to write simpler code to support multiple rendering paths, et cetera. There are subjective reasons to use OpenGL as well, but this is unimportant, what is important is pointing out that "If given a choice no developer would ever use Direct3d for anything" is a ridiculous and biased statement. Also, if your hardware doesn't support OpenGL 2.0, and your application uses OpenGL 2.0, your application isn't going to run either, so the statements:

"Also DirectX/Direct3d is tied directly to the hardware. If your card doesn't support DirectX 9 your not going to be able to run DirectX 9 application. For OpenGL it doesn't work that way. It's a programming API that can be accelerated. If you have a card that was designed to accelerate OpenGL 1.x you can still run OpenGL 2.x. It just won't all be hardware accelerated."

This is VERY misleading. Presuming scenario 1 where the developer (for either D3D or OpenGL) has coded a support for only a particular version of the API, neither API will run partially in software if the driver does not support that level of the API. D3D9 will not run in software unless you're going to use a debugging rasterizer (highly unlikely), and OpenGL 2.0 WILL NOT RUN on a card with a 1.0, 1.1, 1.2, 1.4 driver. Now, there are some 1.4 drivers which were written so that people like myself could write 2.0 code and execute before the hardware was available, in which case the 2.0 distinctions were supported via software emulation, but this was for developers. You're confusing the ability of a specific OpenGL implementation supporting a specification to the maximum of its ability. For example, if a I have an OpenGL 1.4 driver but the card I'm running on doesn't have Hardware T&L, OpenGL's pipeline is quite capable of transparently deciding whether or not it should offload the lighting to the card or doing it in software. This is not the same as some future version of OpenGL running on my old OpenGL card with an old driver.

"If your programming a 3d application and it's not a game and your not Microsoft.. Then your using OpenGL or OpenGL-based system. Period, end of story" - I certainly hope you're not in a decision making capacity at your job (or that your job is doing something other than writing rendering code) because you're screwing your company over. Right tool for the right job, every time. It's a toolbox not a religious jihad.

(2)"OpenGL has a much more formal review system then DirectX/3D has" - No it doesn't. Crimony. Do you know what the specification process for DirectX is? You can say they're different, but it certainly isn't less "formal." You could say it is less open, but that's because it isn't an open API.

Close ties to mobility affecting OpenGL? (2, Insightful)

QuantumFTL (197300) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827921)

I wonder how the growing pressures of the mobile market will be on the OpenGL framework, especially with Khronos at the reins. Perhaps there will be more emphasis on procedural methods (to deal with the small VRAM sizes of mobile chips), or better resource usage for power conservation?

Khronos Group? If this goes bad, don't blame me... (0, Offtopic)

B11 (894359) | more than 7 years ago | (#15827976)

I voted for Kang

The GL Dojo (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15828184)

I hear Zanshin is getting ready to release his Glide Wrapper for GlQuake
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