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Editorial 8.7.00

by Timothy Martin, CEO and Editor-in-Chief

Greetings 3D Web Aficionados!

Welcome to the VirtuWorlds 3DEZine, the place to find the best 3D Web content and everything you need to know about the 3D Web industry. Well, not quite everything yet- but we're getting there. We're still catching our breath from the whirlwind that was SIGGRAPH 2000 in New Orleans. What an amazing conglomeration of computer graphics technology and outlandish partying (the Web3D Roundup was a blast indeed, with Timothy Childs proving himself to be a bigger rockstar than I had even imagined.) SIGGRAPH proved to be every bit as spectacular as it was hyped to be, not to mention that it was a major watershed event for the 3D Web industry.

The evolution demonstrated by 3D Web companies at SIGGRAPH was quite inspiring. For the most part, significant progress was made in three important categories: 1) Hot Applications, 2) Interoperability with high-end 3D Graphics software, and 3) Open Source initiatives. As far as hot applications goes, the newly merged Eyematic/Shout powerhouse clearly led the way with its impressive video-scanning technology enabling the user to simply sit at his computer in front of a video-camera while it converts real-time video of the user into a high-quality 3D bust which actually renders facial emotion extremely realistically. Other apps from such companies as Virtus (http://www.3dvillage.com seems poised to rock the Online Travel industry), and Cycore (their recently acquired PuppetTime affords 3D programmers an invaluable tool in character-animation for short movies on the web), clearly demonstrate that the DEMAND for 3D Web technology will very shortly skyrocket. We were also very pleased to see the increase in interoperability between 'high-end' 3D graphics software and the 'low-end' 3D Web. Discreet certainly wins the prize in this regard, pairing itself with at least eight 3D Web companies such as Macromedia, Pulse, Brilliant Digital Entertainment, and Shout!!! For more on the latest Web 3D news, be sure to check out our news section powered by SPECTRUM NEWS and the omniscient Dave Duberman.

Finally, the quest towards making a viable universal standard in 3D Web delivery is alive and kicking as evidenced by the invigorated activities of the Web 3D Consortium and it's newly elected Board of Directors. Although the spec for the much anticipated X3D open standard was not complete in time for SIGGRAPH as originally planned, the consortium demonstrated significant inroads towards completion of the spec by this Fall. As well, it was refreshing to see a rejuvenated effort by the new BOD to envelope the many 3D Web companies which have to this date not participated in the development of X3D. Their involvement is absolutely crucial to X3D acceptance and Web 3D ubiquity. We will certainly be watching to see how the Consortium fares in its outreach. Be sure to check out our forthcoming Web3D Consortium report by Nick Polys.

As we work towards taking this fast-growing community of 3D Webbers to the next level of content evolution, we are committed more than ever to delivering you the latest info and news relating to our blooming industry. Featured in the 3Dezine is some superb technical analysis by Nick Polys focusing on Shout Interactive's wonderful Shout 3D technology, as well as the slick Spazz 3D authoring tools. Also be sure to check out Steve "that Mac guy" Guynup's article on VRML gaming. If you're itchin' to get down and dirty with code, these articles will turn you on. Look for features on Parallel Graphics and Draw Computing in the near future. Check out some preliminary research in our market study based on a survey that the 3DEZine conducted at the Web3D/VRML 2000 Symposium in Monterey, CA. There will certainly be more extensive surveys and research where that came from, as it is ultimately your voice that is most important in achieving 3D Web for the masses.

A couple of months ago, we opened up our 3D Web job board and have been getting an overwhelmingly positive response. Whether you represent a 3D Web company or are an individual hacker, this will be the place to find anyone offering or seeking a job in the 3D Web community. We are very excited about this service as a functional 3D Web job board can really help to heal the fragmentation of the 3D Web community due to our industry's rocky past. Be sure to e-mail your postings to npolys@virtuworlds.com

Till next time,

Tim Martin

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