3D and the WEB

A short story about 3D and the web. Will 3D finally conquer the WEB or will we have to wait another 15 yesr? You will definitely need a WebGL capable browser to view some parts of this page. Currently only Mozilla Firefox 4, Google Chrome and Safari (on Mac) will work.

So first a little history. 3D was first introduced to in 1994 to the WEB. One year later SGI / Silicon Graphics was promoting WebSpace Author and everybody was thinking that in few years we will be at least partially surfing in 3D. I even played around with WebSpace Author on an SGI and created a primitive VRML. However viewing even a primitive VRML was mission impossible on an ordinary PC. Rare people had Matrox Impression Plus and 3dfx Voodoo came out two years later. SGI Indigo² was alpha and omega at that time and SGI dominated the market.

But all that changed, computer ware getting cheaper and 3D graphics accelerators were introduced. Games started to take advantage of that but what happened to the web? You always needed a special viewer for 3D WEB and there were some technologies like VRML later suppressed by x3d and O3D and also Java3D. And now finally WEB browsers supports WebGL on its own and you do not need any pug-ins.

Behold the wonder:

Here you should see a fractal cube in 3D or Menger sponge.

Everybody can use WebGL and it is really easy. In next article we will see how to insert a x3d on a page using WebGL...