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12 August 2008, 11:12

OpenGL 3.0 specifications released to disquiet

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The specifications for OpenGL 3.0 have been released by OpenGL ARB, part of the Khronos group, which manages the specification for the 2D and 3D graphics platform. The release came a year after Khronos showed a preview of what they were working on. Some community reaction has been hostile; the released 3.0 specifications were not the major rewrite they were expecting from the previews.

OpenGL 3.0 was released simultaneously with a set of extensions to OpenGL 2.1 for older hardware and a plan to define a set of OpenGL 3.0 extensions to expose the capabilities of newer programmable graphics hardware. Some developers have suggested that this release put its emphasis on backwards compatibility over moving new graphics capabilities into the OpenGL core.

OpenGL attempts to address two audiences, the CAD/visualisation developers and games developers. The CAD/Visualisation group are fairly well catered for in OpenGL 3.0 with its evolutionary development. Games developer are looking to exploit GPU cards much more aggressively and, for some of them the lack of state-of-the-art gaming features in OpenGL 3.0 lead one to refer to it as "state of the ark". OpenGL competes in the games development arena with Microsoft's DirectX technology.


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