The Open Web

Though, through the use of cool javascript stuff, from AJAX to three.js, and a ubiquitous rendering technology known as OpenGL, a great deal is possible. All without the use of plugins.

Ever since I first heard about “the internet”, I was fascinated. A giant worldwide computer network for everybody? Wow. The implications were staggering, even at first blush. And still, 20 years later, what it has become goes way beyond what could ever have been imagined.

One of the key words in the paragraph above is “everybody”. And that is the subject of this post – the part of the web that is for Everybody. The Open Web.

Take this site, for example. If you can see anything on the web – you can see this site. You require no logins, no apps, nothing. If you have a browser, and know how to operate it – you’re good to go. That’s the open web. To me, that’s always been where the fascination lies.

For many years, one of the problems with the web was that you needed “plugins” to view certain types of dynamic or interactive content. Java and Flash have been two of the biggies, and I’ve spent many years in each of those technologies. I also dabbled in a plugin called Cosmo Player that showed 3D worlds that were “marked up” with VRML. (VRML means Virtual Reality Modeling Language – the “M” and the “L” are just like the ones in HTML)

Because these plugins were not standard components of a web browser, they were not part of the “open web” – and they were vulnerable to the whims of the browsers that were. It is a fairly commonly held belief that Microsoft vexed Java as a browser feature by creating its own version around the turn of the Century – and it is pretty well accepted that Flash was ultimately killed off when Steve Jobs officially ruled out allowing it on iPhones.

The miracle cure for all this was known as “HTML5”. It was supposed to allow us to do all this stuff, but without plugins. As one who has used Flash for some pretty intricate interactive multimedia stuff, I can say for sure that HTML5 hasn’t quite done all that. Though, through the use of cool javascript stuff, from AJAX to three.js, and a ubiquitous rendering technology known as OpenGL, a great deal is possible. All without the use of plugins.

And what does all this have to do with 3dspace, or the 3D web? Well, the point is that now the technology does exist, to have 3D content on the open web.

Here’s an interesting article my darling wife sent me the other day about the open web. It doesn’t speak of 3D content or plugins. But it does speak to a number of the ideas that stem from my original fascination with “the internet” 20 years ago – it’s for Everyone. That’s one of the most exciting, and amazing, things about it.

http://scripting.com/liveblog/users/davewiner/2016/01/07/0801.html

 

 

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on LinkedInShare on FacebookEmail this to someone

Author: Pete

Editor-in-Chief, Lead Software Developer and Artistic Director @ 3dspace.com