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Dauntless

OpenGL OpenGL 2.0?

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Has anyone heard any word of what will be of 3dLabs proprosal for OpenGL 2.0? I''m brand spankin new to OpenGL programming, and I kind of worry about the ARB''s lack of progress in putting in new features. What 3dLabs proposed seems pretty cool, but I''ve yet to hear any mention of whether it will be improved or not. Somehow, having proprietary extensions seems to be anti-thetical to the whole notion of the Open part of OpenGL. I hope the proposal goes through....

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the arb are actively working on opengl2.0 at the moment, we will have to wait + see if its exactly like the 3dlabs proposal

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quote:
Original post by Dauntless
Somehow, having proprietary extensions seems to be anti-thetical to the whole notion of the Open part of OpenGL. I hope the proposal goes through....

I disagree. It makes it more open by allowing vendors to improve the API independent of any central group. The central group (the ARB) will later be able to standardize the extensions. This whole process allows vendors to add and test their features from the beginning.

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In my (personal) opinion ... as much as i love OpenGL compared to D3D ... D3D will win unless the ARB becomes FAR more proatice with regard to the extension problem. It''s very easy to promote such extensions, but unless every card manufacture adheres to the basic structure, this thing is for nothing. It''s about time that card manufacturers got together and decided upon a common policy which sidelined the ARB and produced a single interface to sell OpenGL. Otherwise, like I said, OpenGL will become defunct.

I never thought I''d say this, but I''m now looking at D3D as a viable alternative - and D3D has so many problems it isn''t true - but it''s still more viable at the moment.

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OpenGL does have a "single interface," that''s why all the extensions have the same ''style''. However, their potential uniqueness is the whole reason behind them! You can get more out of an NVidia or ATI or whatever video card through extensions than you can through DirectX (by the word of both NVidia and ATI). If you''re worried about programmable shaders, those should be standardize in the near future, since ATI and NVidia are finally agreeing with each other about them (read the ARB notes).

OpenGL 1.3 does have a lot of the extensions turned into standard functions, but Windows doesn''t support OpenGL 1.3. Almost every other OS does. Microsoft is simply trying to suppress OpenGL.

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N and V ...

Actually you''re kinda wrong and right at the same time - OpenGL (and extensions) have been around for a while now, and no one has aggreed to agree! It''s up to the ARB to force this kind of common policy, but I don''t see it happening for at least 2 years, maybe more. I wish that wasn''t the case ... but I fear it is. The ARB is a VERY slow acting organisation, whereas at least D3D is owned by one company and developed for it''s own purposes - I wish this wasn''t the case, but I fear it''s true.

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quote:
Original post by Shag
N and V ...

Actually you''re kinda wrong and right at the same time - OpenGL (and extensions) have been around for a while now, and no one has aggreed to agree! It''s up to the ARB to force this kind of common policy, but I don''t see it happening for at least 2 years, maybe more. I wish that wasn''t the case ... but I fear it is. The ARB is a VERY slow acting organisation, whereas at least D3D is owned by one company and developed for it''s own purposes - I wish this wasn''t the case, but I fear it''s true.


In that case, why don''t you just use D3D instead of arguing about OGL''s future?

I don''t mean to be harsh or anything but if you don''t see a future for OGL, why in heck do you use it?





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Why the heck do I use it?

Because it''s wonderful to use, and i care about it''s future. I just don''t won''t OpenGL to end up on the scrap pile because it couldn''t compete. That would be the biggest shame ever! Can you imagine Microsoft seeing off another BETTER technology?

Rest my case ...

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Mostly the so called shader technologies which nvidia and ati use. The trouble is they both seem to be diverging, rather than converging!

This is where D3D wins ... cards support a unified methodolgy in this field ... whereas OpenGL does not. Don''t get me wrong, OpenGL (in my opinion) is a much better API to use, but the ARB could, ironically, be the death of it!

It''s about time the card manufacturers got together to at least use the same interfaces to do a given job - even though the drivers would be left to optimise a given task.

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No. D3D never wins. The only thing that makes it good is that there are more books on it so even people who have no brains and truly never plan on programming with it can learn how.

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Drizzt, be quite, you aren''t being constructive. Shag, that''s a major worry of the ARB too. Do you read the ARB meeting notes? You''ll see that they are discussing plans to have a unified interface to programable shaders. The OpenGL 2.0 spec. also deals a lot with shaders.

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Just a little side note ...

Why are Microsoft still members of the ARB? when they actively discourage the use of OpenGL? mmm... no need to answer - it's called politics!

And, yes I do read the meeting notes! Whe they finally appear! lol. I just believe that the more presure that can be put on the ARB and the card manufacturers the better things will be for everyone!

Edited by - Shag on November 18, 2001 8:24:50 PM

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But back to an earlier question ... what extensions would I like to see unified?

Look at the NV_VERTEX blah ... These should have been part of the official extension mechanism from early days. Using AGP mem for such tasks is blatantly obvious in many ways - nVidia and ATI should be co-operating on such things! Lets face it, from a programmers point of view, there''s nothing worse than having to re-write code for different cards - that is definately a backward step! Remember the days of writing for DOS? Having to cater for different (sound and graphics) cards ... Not a good idea at all!

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The reason to keep opengl around(IMO), is because its great to use, and cross platform. I write games on linux, then port to windows. If microsoft makes D3D for linux, send me an e-mail, but only if it is as easy to use and initialize as OpenGL. Even then, I would not really want to learn another 3d API.

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using the example of vertex programs how does this differ from d3d + opengl

--- d3d ---
if (caps_bit vertex program)
do ...
else
do software fallback

--- opengl ---
if (arb_vertex_program)
do ...
else if (nv_vertex_program)
do ...
else
do software fallback

// nv_vertex_program is prolly very similar to arb_vertex_program ie once youve understood one u should be able to pick up the other easily

doing extensions are very easy to learn compared to other pieces of an engine eg collision detection+response/AI.
granted d3d''s method is less work ie 2 options vs 3. but u can argue opengls is more powerful ie the ppl who know the card the best wrote the extension to fit the hardware instead of the extension being choosen by a 3rd party + then trying to make the hardware fit the extension.

name me one commerical game that uses vertex programs with d3d or opengl, nothing yet? why not? cause game publishers want the largest user base (weve only starting to see 3dhardware required games becoming commonplace) if youre maybe wanting to get a publisher for your game yould be better off sticking with opengl1.1.

but youre prolly only doing this for other reasons (eg hoping to get a job in the industry/ experimenting etc) if so write something that works on your card. does it have to work on all cards? even if u choose d3d u will find there will be cards that wont run your program. see a recent article on gamasutra ''startopia postmortem''

>>Why are Microsoft still members of the ARB?<<

part of the ARB charter saiz none are the founding members (which ms is one of them) can be kicked out.

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I was thinking vertex arrays rahther than programs ... sorry I confused!

There needn''t be seperate extensions for (nowadays) such a fundamental extension. The ARB should have covered this, and allowed seperate mechanisms to operate with one command structure, which would free programmers from writing seperate code for different cards!

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Since I''m new to OpenGL, how do the extensions work exactly? From what I can understand, they are specific to the hardware being utilized. So doesn''t that make it harder for the programmer?

Now the programmer will have to put in some kind of Switch case to test to see what kind of hardware is in the computer, and then initialize itself. Wouldn''t it be easier to just have a standardized set of capabilities? From what I saw of 3dLabs proposal, they are heading the way of D3d by making functionality of the video card exposed through a high level programming language (ala shaders). To me, this makes a lot more sense than having to come up with proprietary extensions all the time, and makes cross platform (and cross hardware) development more diffucult.

And btw, can anyone point out a RECENT book on OpenGL (one that covers OGL 1.3) that is not specific to Windows? I''ve seen a few, but they all seem to concentrate on M$ development. I''m starting to read Norman Lin''s Beginning 3d programming on Linux, and for a newcomer to 3d programming, the first 3 chapters have been excellent. I think I''ll have to get the Advanced book to learn more about Mesa/OpenGl though....has anyone read either book all the way through?

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quote:
Original post by Dauntless
Since I''m new to OpenGL, how do the extensions work exactly? From what I can understand, they are specific to the hardware being utilized. So doesn''t that make it harder for the programmer?


Extensions aren''t always specific to the hardware. They also allow backwards compatibility (in the case of Windows and its slow uptake of new versions, that''s very important ). The ARB ''standardizes'' extensions and makes them an optional part of the OpenGL spec. (as in: you don''t have to support this feature to be officially OpenGL compliant, but if you do, do it this way) after a while.

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Remember the good old days with DOS when you had to write an separate Interface to cater for sooo many different Video/Audio cards? Seriously... DirectX has made developers lazy. Writing two separate effects to cater for say nVidia and ATI OpenGL extensions is still infinitely less work than simple Super VGA 2D graphics and Audio were under DOS.

Be thankful and stop complaining!

I like both OpenGL and Direct3D (The current API anyway), I actually find them quite similar. But Microsoft insists on changing their 3D API with every new DX version. This alone will prevent anyone who doesn''t want to learn a new API every year from sticking exclusively to D3D. My opinion? Support both!

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theres more news about opengl2.0 at www.opengl.org out today.
definitly looks like its moving foward pretty quickly

>>I''d like to thank the 3Dlabs team for their hard work in producing the white papers on a very aggressive schedule, and reviewers from Alias| Wavefront, Apple, ATI, id Software, Nvidia, PTC, SGI, SoftImage, the Stanford Graphics Lab and others.<<

id software hehe

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Direct3D is garbage, PERIOD.
wannabe OpenGL.

peace.

To the vast majority of mankind, nothing is more agreeable than to escape the need for mental exertion... To most people, nothing is more troublesome than the effort of thinking.

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quote:
Original post by jenova
Direct3D is garbage, PERIOD.
wannabe OpenGL.


I love OpenGL; I hope I''ve made that clear. But posting stuff like this is kind of inflamitory and useless. Sure, you can give your reasons and discuss objectively, but otherwise you''re just going to get all the people that love DirectX in here yelling . DirectX obviously works; but, does it work better? That''s the thing we''re discussing.

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