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GDC: Khronos Reveals API Updates and New Working Group at Game Developers Conference

Consortium releases Vulkan features, WebGL 2.0 and new OpenXR working group; group hosts series of events for the developer community.

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Khronos has made significant announcements at the 2017 Game Developers Conference, including a call for a New 3D Portability Exploratory Group that would enable developers to better target their applications across all platforms regardless of which native low-level graphics APIs they use, such as Microsoft’s DX12 or Apple’s Metal.

The industry consortium behind OpenGL and WebGL, among many others, is continuing its strong commitments to creating a community for collaboration of open standards that are used extensively throughout the industry. The group works strongly in support of developing technologies that work across competing platforms, enabling software developers to reach more audiences and markets from their core code bases.

Khronos at GDC 2017: Announcements

Vulkan

The group has announced that Vulkan adoption grows. There are also new Vulkan graphics API features. In just its first year the Vulkan API has gained high fidelity among gaming. Vulkan is supported in leading game engines like Unity and Unreal. Vulkan drivers are also shipping from all the major GPU manufacturers, for both desktop and mobile.

03 - The working group participants include the biggest names in the computer industry—including Apple, ARM, AMD, Nvidia, Imagination and more. (image: courtesy Khronos Group. All rights reserved)

01 – The Khronos Group participants include the biggest names in the computer industry—including Apple, ARM, AMD, Nvidia, Imagination and more. (image: courtesy Khronos Group. All rights reserved)

At GDC Khronos announced the release of new Vulkan extensions for cross-platform access to Virtual Reality and multi-GPU functionality.

OpenXR™

The Khronos Virtual Reality Initiative announced in December is making rapid progress in designing an open standard for portable Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality apps and devices. At GDC 2017, Khronos releases the official name of the standard: OpenXR. The group is made up of a who’s-who of VR industry leaders working together to combat industry fragmentation in these markets. Any interested companies are invited to join Khronos to get involved and help steer the VR industry. Read more at: https://www.khronos.org/blog/the-openxr-working-group-is-here.

New Portability Standard

Khronos has announced a call for participation in a new Exploratory Group to create a native 3D Portability API to enable developers to write rendering code that can run efficiently on Vulkan, DX12 and Metal-based systems. This API could also be a solid foundation for the next generation WebGL that can bind to this portable API for use with JavaScript and WebAssembly. Interested companies are welcome to join Khronos for a voice and a vote in this initiative. Find out how to get involved at: khronos.org/3dportability.

WebGL 2.0 News

Already supported by production browsers from Google and Mozilla, the WebGL 2.0 standard is final and now ready for developers to create the next wave of 3D web applications and engines. WebGL 2.0 exposes OpenGL ES 3.0-class functionality, bringing desktop-OpenGL capabilities to web developers everywhere. Additionally, Khronos has now started work on the next generation of WebGL to bring the power of the new generation of explicit 3D APIs to the Web. More information on WebGL 2.0 is available at https://www.khronos.org/blog/webgl-2.0-arrives.

Final Call for Feedback on glTF™ 2.0

Khronos has released a developer preview version of glTF 2.0 that brings significant enhancements over glTF 1.0. For example, glTF 2.0 introduces physically-based rendering (PBR) for portable, high-quality materials – making glTF independent of the underlying 3D API. Khronos is seeking input and feedback from the industry via GitHub to help finalize glTF 2.0 in the next few weeks. Khronos has also this week released a request for quotations on a funded project to bring glTF 2.0 export capability to the open-source Blender 3D Authoring Tool. Find out how to share feedback and get more details here: https://www.khronos.org/blog/call-for-feedback-on-gltf-2.0.

More at GDC 2017 f0r Khronos Group

In addition to API updates, The Khronos Group is hosting educational sessions and networking events this week including a full-day developer conference and booth talks from various members. Below is a high-level look at Khronos talks and events taking place at GDC.

  • Khronos GDC Booth – Visit the Khronos booth for hourly presentations on Khronos APIs as well as opportunities to talk with Khronos members and standards experts. Booth 2419, South Hall.
  • Khronos discusses OpenXR at VRDC 2017: Monday and Tuesday, February 27 to 28 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., visit the Khronos table #TT06 in room 135 North Hall to talk to VR experts working on OpenXR and share feedback on this recently-announced initiative.
  • Khronos 3D Graphics Developer Day Sessions on Vulkan, OpenXR, WebGL, glTF and more: On Tuesday, February 28 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., room 3022 in West Hall, Khronos will host one-hour educational sessions for developers.
  • Khronos Meetup: To discuss WebGL, WebVR, glTF, mobile 3D and network with Khronos members and developers, join the group on Thursday, March 2 from 6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. at Galvanize, San Francisco.
  • Official GDC Sessions related to Khronos standards: Khronos members and developers will present on topics from Vulkan Lessons Learned to the Future of VR.

The full schedule of events is available at: https://www.khronos.org/news/events/gdc-2017.

About The Khronos Group

The Khronos Group is an industry consortium creating open standards to enable the authoring and acceleration of parallel computing, graphics, vision and neural nets on a wide variety of platforms and devices. Khronos standards include Vulkan®, OpenGL®, OpenGL® ES, OpenGL® SC, WebGL™, SPIR-V™, OpenCL™, SYCL™, OpenVX™, NNEF™, COLLADA™, OpenXR™ and glTF™. Khronos members are enabled to contribute to the development of Khronos specifications, are empowered to vote at various stages before public deployment, and are able to accelerate the delivery of their cutting-edge accelerated platforms and applications through early access to specification drafts and conformance tests.

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