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shindig

WebGL...

7 posts in this topic

What's your guys' take on it? I've been playing around with it and am pretty impressed.

 

These are some scenes I exported out of Unity and rendered in canvas with J3D.js 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UZK1-ZwvEsw

 

Bluesky1.jpg

Bluesky2.jpg

 

Here's a live example: http://leefromseattle.com/jsonB/page.html

 

 

redsky1.jpg

redsky2.jpg

islands.png

desert1.jpg

 

And I found this plugin for webGL in IE but haven't implemented it yet: http://www.iewebgl.com/Default.aspx

 

 

The skyboxes were free on the unity asset store heh. 

 

 

 

 

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WebGL is great.... for high-spec machines running a subset of browsers.

It looks like a fun thing to play with.

Perhaps in a few years it may become mainstream, but right now high-end machines struggle to get double-digit framerates on anything but the most trivial of scenes. The fact that it is built atop JavaScript, which itself has basically flatlined in terms of performance and is still going asymptotically north when it comes to memory consumption, does not help.
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Perhaps in a few years it may become mainstream, but right now high-end machines struggle to get double-digit framerates on anything but the most trivial of scenes. The fact that it is built atop JavaScript, which itself has basically flatlined in terms of performance and is still going asymptotically north when it comes to memory consumption, does not help.


This is pretty much my 'problem' with it - everyone is getting super excited that they can run games from the 90s in the browser now (the BananaBread example even looks like Quake3) but no one has remotely shown me that you can get something which uses any CPU resources going.

People yammer on about it being 'the future' but it smells a lot like the past to me... and the past taking a lot more power to run it at that... (both in terms of cpu power to execute AND wall-socket power to run!).

(Although I stopped taking anything JavaScript based serious the day I heard it referred to as 'to the metal programming'.. I facepalm'd so hard I nearly knocked myself out... dry.png)
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When compiled using Emscripten / C++ the output software runs noticeably faster than hand written Javascript but I am still finding it hard to get anywhere near the performance of a native desktop OpenGL application.

 

On my Android test device, a spinning cube will run fine when compiled using Java (SDK) or C++(NDK) however when running the same project via a web browser, it is extremely slow and gets very hot.

 

Since the rotating cube doesn't really have much code executing per frame, I don't think it is a Javascript speed thing, it must be how the browser vendors have implemented OpenGL ES 2. This should get better over time.

Edited by Karsten_
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WebGL is great.... for high-spec machines running a subset of browsers.

It looks like a fun thing to play with.

Perhaps in a few years it may become mainstream, but right now high-end machines struggle to get double-digit framerates on anything but the most trivial of scenes. The fact that it is built atop JavaScript, which itself has basically flatlined in terms of performance and is still going asymptotically north when it comes to memory consumption, does not help.

 

Javascript speed is not what's holding back game development in browsers. Javascript (V8) is much, much faster than Python often with similar memory usage depending on the scenario yet people are out there making games in Python.  The problems are the availability and quality of libraries with which to build games. Canvas and WebGL have radically different performance characteristics depending on the browser you use and until fairly recently Javascript's only home was the browser. Now there are more options, so I would be interested in seeing if anything comes out of projects like node-sdl or node-opengl.

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I read a few articles in my random web searching about how to do browser based media right and they really hated on JS and WebGL and such.

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WebGL is great.... for high-spec machines running a subset of browsers.

It looks like a fun thing to play with.

Perhaps in a few years it may become mainstream, but right now high-end machines struggle to get double-digit framerates on anything but the most trivial of scenes. The fact that it is built atop JavaScript, which itself has basically flatlined in terms of performance and is still going asymptotically north when it comes to memory consumption, does not help.

 

You seem to be suggesting that WebGL is slow in addition to the problems innate to JavaScript and associated libraries, but why? I haven't found that to be the case (except maybe on mobile platforms*), and indeed I'm not sure why WebGL specifically would be much worse than OpenGL natively, since I'd expect most of the work to be done on the GPU.

*and my guess had been that the performance on mobile would be more to do with hardware-specific optimizations for native apps, but I could be very wrong about that

 


This is pretty much my 'problem' with it - everyone is getting super excited that they can run games from the 90s in the browser now (the BananaBread example even looks like Quake3) but no one has remotely shown me that you can get something which uses any CPU resources going.

People yammer on about it being 'the future' but it smells a lot like the past to me... and the past taking a lot more power to run it at that... (both in terms of cpu power to execute AND wall-socket power to run!).

 

Are you referring to graphical fidelity, or CPU resources? It seems like you're almost using the two interchangeably, but I'm not really sure how they're related.

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