2015 - The Year of Web3D & the 3D Web




I can say it with confidence in 2015,"The 3D Web is finally here!" I have been involved with and covered web3D tech for years but it has only been since last year's support of WebGL (a JavaScript API for rendering interactive 3D & 2D graphics) by all the major browser vendors that web3D is truly ubiquitous on all desktop, tablet, and mobile devices. Gone are the days of having to download and install a plugin or app to run interactive 3D content via the web.


The super exciting thing for me is that this web3d tech development has created a groundwork within HTML5 for the highly anticipated 3D Web. What is the difference between web3D and the 3D Web you may ask? I see web3D as all tech related to the delivery and rendering of static and interactive 3D content on the Internet. Google Earth, World Of Warcraft, 3D online gaming, virtual surgery, and military simulations are some examples of web3D applications. Unity3DFlashX3D-Edit, and Sublime Text are some examples of authoring tools developers use for creating web3D content. VRML/X3D, WebGL, X3DOM, GLAM, and three.js are examples of web3D languages. Even web-based virtual reality, or WebVR, that connects the web with head mounted displays and smartphone HMDs is. All of this is web3D.


The 3D Web is simply the 3D representation part of the Internet that like the 2D part is built on open source and open standards such as HTML5, CSS, JS, etc. The 3D Web breaks web3D free of traditionally walled technology garden experiences. Sure this is something that web3D standards achieved decades ago, but even the standards required a player for viewing content. As a web developer, building for the 3D Web provides me a certain level of comfort around my content's longevity and the freedom from being subject to the whims of proprietary web3D platforms.


I'm keeping this post short but expect to see more from me this year on various 3D web companies, websites, applications, and news. I am even putting together a video series about it all on my MetaverseOne Youtube Channel (mainly for my folks) as these are very exciting times for the Web and the open Metaverse. Happy 2015 all!

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