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Blender Releases Linux 3D Web Plugin 166

Qbertino writes: "Not a Number, producer of Blender, the Linux community's favorite professional 3D Package (get it for free) has released the beta of their 3D Web Plugin for Netscape 6.1 / Mozilla on Linux/Unix. It offers full integration of Blender's realtime 3D enviroment based applications into the browser's enviroment. Including OpenGL acceleration and all. Check out the Demos. Feedback on the beta-release is welcome and kindly requested on the Blender Community Discussion Board."
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Blender Releases Linux 3D Web Plugin

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  • I know for most of us Internet Explorer support is rather unimportant... But it will make a difference in whether or not this plugin will gain wide support. The more Blender support you can get, the merrier.
  • VRML? (Score:2, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward
    When has 3d environments *ever* been something useful on the web?
    • Re:VRML? (Score:2, Insightful)

      by .sig ( 180877 )
      Well, in a few dozen years, we might have the technology to make it practical. Might as well get started now...

      Seriously, though, how much of the web is practical anyway? A good bit of it is solely for entertainment or amusement, and better graphics is usually preferred, especially over text.

      • The real problem right now is that we are using two dimensional tools. Our monitor, while it can give the illusion of 3d is still 2d. Our mouse is 2d, with the exception of using the scroll button in 3d games. Information itself is 2d (not talking about the collection/architecture of information but the information itself).

        The other problem is that the web is not 2d or 3d. It is more like n dimensional. So to represent it in 3d versus 2d is really not solving any problem.

        In the end, this is just another fluffy tool that can be used to make neat 3d online games.
        • Information itself is 2d (not talking about the collection/architecture of information but the information itself).


          What's that supposed to mean? AFAIK, any discrete information can be stored as a single (huge) integer. Your computer's RAM can be viewed as one long 128mb (or whatever) integer. There's nothing fundamentally special about 2 dimensions.

          • I actually was going to change that to 1 dimensional but I was afraid it would cause more of a stir than saying 2 dimensional. Information is 1 dimensional, the presentation of informational is 2 dimensional (on a written page or website) and the organization/architecture of information is n dimensional.
    • When has 3d environments *ever* been something useful on the web?

      Well one example is the NASA ISS VRML page [nasa.gov]. If you've ever wanted to see what the station was like from all angles it can show you this. Sure it's not as good as games but it's the best you'll get with limited bandwidth. Does anybody have any better ideas or ways to send 3D models over the net?

    • when they tried it with vrml it was poorly thought out, poorly executed, and way ahead of the hardware technology currently available.

      now with 3d accelerated graphics cards far more commonplace in the desktop world, there actually is a serious chance this type of thing could be the next face of the "web".

      don't you think that in it's early stages the current iteration of the web must have seemed useless? imagine... the year is 1994...

      "plain text served over modem connections? why would anyone want to bother when you could just
      mail them a printed flyer"

      .... and now the web is a mainstay of corporate advertising. virtual 3d environments for it are simply the next step in a logical progression.
      • behold for the future

        soon there will be more and more 3d on the net,
        educational, promotional, and just for fun

        online gaming, online sales, online product
        presentations, you name it
        at our company we use blender for all our 3d!
        animations and a few games we are working on now!

        blender is the fastest modeller available!
        blender renders faster than any other highend 3d
        application!

        blender, once you get addicted...
        you will never let go

        peter (dotblend)
        http://www.alatis.com
  • Cross-platform (Score:5, Informative)

    by maggard ( 5579 ) <michael@michaelmaggard.com> on Wednesday January 30, 2002 @01:39PM (#2925969) Homepage Journal
    What didn't get noted is that one can go to the same demos running Wintel and IE and get a working plugin automagically installed. This isn't just Linux/Mozilla but reasonably cross-platform. Next gotta check with MacOS & MacOS X.
    • Re:Cross-platform (Score:1, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Cowards filtered. If their words aren't worth so much as a nom de plume why should I value them any more?

      Quite a few of the most interesting slashdot posts are made as Anonymous Cowards. Often, this is done due to potential legal/illegal/problematic nature of the posts. Yes, you can use an alias - but if you want to be really, really, secure you need to use an anynomous web proxy. And you cant login from them.

      Oh sh*t. Jus realised you aint gonna be reading this anyhow.........

      J. Random AC
    • What didn't get noted is that one can go to the same demos running Wintel and IE and get a working plugin automagically installed. This isn't just Linux/Mozilla but reasonably cross-platform.

      This auto-installing MSIE plug-in did work on my box with the slightly jacked-up AMD K6-2/366MHz CPU (overclocked to 400MHz), 256M SDRAM and generic Trident 4M AGP video card, but it was agonizingly slow. They're not kidding about needing at least a 450MHz CPU (something) and a modern TNT AGP video card. I'd suggest an Athlon 800MHz CPU for bearable performance.

  • by tshak ( 173364 ) on Wednesday January 30, 2002 @01:42PM (#2925977) Homepage
    This sounds great, but are there any "real world" sites using or planning on using this plugin? Or is it just another VRML experiment?
    • Its a bit more than a simplistic "3d content" plugin. It supports full-plown python scripting in its game engine, which basically allows one to embed 3d games and a better breed of 3d visualization apps in a web page. Plans to use it involve that "real world" sites are aware that something like this exists.
      • Plans to use it involve that "real world" sites are aware that something like this exists.


        They are, and they are using Wild Tangent [wildtangent.com]. I don't know if that's a fair comparison, but it seems like WT already has a lot of momentum behind id.
    • This is not VRML. Few sites use it for anything professional at this stage, because the plugin is only a few months old. It's still being tested for Linux/Netscape. It will do much if you actually give it a try instead of bashing it the second it comes out.
  • This could be just what I'm looking for. My University honours project [honoursproject.co.uk] includes doing some 3D models in a web browser and at the moment I'm looking at SVG and javascript to fake the 3D. I'm now requiring something a bit more advance and this may be just what I'm looking for to avoid ActiveX :-)
  • by mycr0ft ( 207814 )
    It's not completely free. You can't get the source.
    Read http://freshmeat.net/projects/blender/ [freshmeat.net]

    --mycr0ft
    • It may not be open source but it is free.

      There is a big difference.
    • Come on, that link is almost 4 years old. Go to the official site [blender3d.com] and download the latest version for free. It is not open source but lack of that does not make it non free. It is a good product. I have used the Linux and the Windows versions and it is capable of amazing things.

      Alias|wavefront [aliaswavefront.com] is supposed to be releasing a free (for non commercial use) version of Maya [aliaswavefront.com] soon. I heard it will embed a watermark in your work. But still, having access and getting exposure to software that costs thousands of dollars is well worth it.
  • Blender is a win32 package too, the gui is horrible, but ok, that seems common with 3D packages. What seems to be so odd is the Unix only releases of plugins for the web.

    How many users do they think there are with Unix browsers? So how many people will produce 3D content for their format? If there isn't a market, there are not suppliers. It's a simple as that.
  • Haven't we tried this before?
  • It is a very powerful 3D editor, from what I have seen, but I'll be damned if I can get it to do anything! lol I just hope that the plugin isn't as impossible to use as the editor. I'm glad to hear that they have Linux in mind though.
    • I've tried to get something useful out of Blender on a couple of occasions, but the interface is just too obtuse.

      I've been able to figure out Sculpt 3D, Turbo Silver, Imagine, Lightwave, and VariCAD without too much drama, but Blender defeats me.

      I really, really miss Lightwave. It had the perfect mix of power and ease-of-use.

      DG
      • Re:I have to agree (Score:4, Interesting)

        by nhavar ( 115351 ) on Wednesday January 30, 2002 @02:30PM (#2926205) Homepage
        That's wild, i've never used any of those products and I mastered Blender enough to build - this - [gargoyle-design.com] after about three days of running through the tuts and messing around with it.
      • > I've tried to get something useful out of Blender on a couple of occasions, but the interface is just too obtuse. Why do everybody complain about the UI ? Once you get used to it, you will find it so fast to use you will never want switch to anything else
        • The program I really cut my 3D teeth on was a program called Imagine. Imagine was Blender-like, in so far that it had an interface and a bunch of concepts that you really had to know before you could make good use of it; stuff that wasn't immediately obvious.

          I did up a fully-detailed, to-scale Klingon D7 battlecruiser using it that was indistinguisable from the "real thing". It took about 3 months of after-work work. (Why is it that newbie 3D modelers always do Star Trek models? :)

          Then, on the advice of a friend of mine, I got ahold of Lightwave.

          In some ways it was more primitive than Imagine. No procedural textures to speak of, and no free-form bitmap textures (so "decals" were a serious PITA) But Oh-My-Lord it was SO SIMPLE to both make models and stage scenes.

          Lightwave uses film paradigms for a lot of its user interface. It stops being a "3D tool" and starts being something more like an interactive film studio. With Imagine, 3D work was like being a cross between a computer programmer and an engineer. With Lightwave, it was more like being a film director.

          Both my throughput and my quality went way, WAY up when I switched to Lightwave.

          Imagine was capable of generating prettier stills (the renderer was more powerful) but Lightwave made better MOVIES - because the interface was more conducive to the real task at hand.

          I don't doubt that people can do good work with Blender, and that with time, one can become proficiant in its use. But with Lightwave, that proficiancy step wasn't needed. The interface was transparent.

          I guess you really have to try it and see for yourself.

          DG
    • by brondsem ( 553348 ) on Wednesday January 30, 2002 @02:16PM (#2926142) Homepage
      Take a look at the learning path [blender3d.com]. It helped me get a good grasp on the interface. I haven't used other editors, so I can't say it's better or worse than any.
    • Blender's UI is...rather unfortunate.

      However, what really kills it for me is the extremely limited ability to Undo actions. In this day and age, we've all been pampered by essentially unlimited undo in all useful applications; including most (admittedly, much more costly) 3D modelling packages...Even after learning the Blender UI, I couldn't deal with the lack of proper Undo and eventually abandoned it. I may take another look if they fix this issue.

    • It's quite powerful. It has some interface annoyances (despite what the Blender groupies say), but if you're willing to put up with it, you CAN produce some kick-a** stuff. Get out your wallet though, if you want the latest release of Blender Creator (the plugin, of course, is free).
      • by Qbertino ( 265505 )
        Blender in general still is free ('beer'). For everything classical 3D packages are actually used (stills, videos, sfx, etc.).
        Only if you want to produce stand alone realtime 3D applications or web content without the blender logo displayed in a corner at the bottem do you have to buy a license.
        Which is, on top of that, somewhat resonable in pricing (around 300$, single license) for such a package.

        Notice that the other thing in this game is NeMo/Virtools for something like 5000$. And that's a windows-only gadget.

        Oh, and btw, just for the book :-) , Blender's most outstanding feature is - believe it or not - it's user interface and workspace management. Unmatched speed, usability, versatility and customizability. No shit. The first two weeks I thought their GUI designers had smoked some really bad stuff (everybody does!) - then I caught on.
        Once you've grasped what they were up to when they programed this, you'll NEVER ever touch any other 3D Modeller again. I actually consider Blenders interface on of the most remarkable feats in interface design in general.
        I honestly thought cinema4d was king in this area. It actually is just another also-ran.
        • Only if you want to produce stand alone realtime 3D applications or web content without the blender logo displayed in a corner at the bottem do you have to buy a license.

          OR if you want the most current release of Blender Creator OR Blender Publisher.

          Which is, on top of that, somewhat resonable in pricing (around 300$, single license) for such a package.

          Personally, I'd like to see my $300 buy more modeling-related tools, interface polish, and reliability, than the ability to create and distribute 3D web content. But, as long as users know that their $300 is for the purchase of a Publisher license (which may include functionality they simply don't need or want), the price is fine.
  • Oh, wait, it said "plugin"... damn. Gotta get these eyes fixed.
  • Market (Score:4, Informative)

    by peterdaly ( 123554 ) <`petedaly' `at' `ix.netcom.com'> on Wednesday January 30, 2002 @02:28PM (#2926198)
    Seeing how the site is slashdotted, I might as well reply.

    I see the market for this not being "VRML" like things, like someone said, but remote viewing of blender files (and other supported formats?) without having to have blender installed. The same reason many companies use PDF for "print" documents. You don't have to have the DTP tool used to create the document, you just have to have a common web based viewer (Acrobat.)

    I know companies charge thousands for web plug-ins that let people view ProE models and the like without having ProE installed. Is this much different?

    -Pete
    • Blender has the ability to act as a game engine. There are Blender 3D games that you can run inside Blender. This plug in allows you to play these games in your browser. I haven't seen the plug in used to view models (like Volo View lets you view AutoCAD drawings). I think the Blender plugin is intended to be more like Flash and allow people to create interesting interactive content. When the Blender site comes back :) check it out. It's pretty cool.

      Blender is also based in Python so a user can write python scripts to export their Blender models into other formats, say Lightwave or Renderman for instance. For a free product its damned amazing.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Hi, I have used Blender for a couple of years, and I have some comments on the user interface that would probably shed some light here.

    The interface is not obvious at first, but it seems to follow a *nix like trend, in that it is:

    1) Confusing, and difficult to pick up.
    2) Way faster than the more widely known packages, once you get the hang of it.
    3) High degree of customizability in workflow and layout of the screen.

    It takes time to understand the interface (and the manual helps a lot), but it does boast a very direct feel in the workflow, there are few cumbersome elements in the interface.

    -Adrian
  • Okay guys, I think we've forgotten to use our friend the apostrophe a couple of times here:
    1. Community's (instead of communitys)
    2. Browser's (instead of browsers)
    Simple enough, we're talking possessive, not plural. Just doing the job the Grammar Nazi's not awake to do right now.... ;-)

    Tom.

  • When you go to the actual plugin download page it is currently only available for Wintel platforms.
    The linux one is a high priority they say and they hope to have it available for all platforms that Blender supports.

  • I believe both Maya and Softimage XSI are available for Linux. Much more feature rich than Blender, and I prefer them, as would any serious 3D artist. Still. for the price, Blender is pretty nifty. Perhaps you should say favorite free/cheap Linux 3D app...
    • Yes both Maya and Softimage XSI are on Linux. Houdini was actually first. There is also PRMan and the RAT tools, Rayz, Shake, rastrack, and few others here and there.

      Yes I guess it depends on the perspective about favorite 3D package. Even Michael Tiemann of RedHat said once that long ago he wanted Maya running on Linux after experiencing it some time ago. But Blender is good for it's target audience/niche.
      • That Houdini was first on Linux is a common misbelief strewn about by the Houdini people (can't grasp that name of theirs...?...)

        In fact, Blender was the first full range 3D Package for Linux. It's been around for quite a while now (+- 2 years). The plugin and their 'pay money for Logo-free Blender creator' is what's fairly new.
        • I was talking about commercial 3D packages, as that was the reference on the parent post. yes Blender has been a while, but as far as regular commercial 3D apps Houdini was first, maybe I should have made it clear. I thought Blender was longer than that. I remember seeing Houdini on Linux at SIGGRAPH 2000 (maybe the HP booth?) so Houdini has been ther for a while.

          From the little search I did, Houdini for Linux was announced on March of 99, and shown at SIGGRAPH 99 at the E&S booth (beta version I believe). Houdini 4 which became available for Linux was apparently released in January 2000:

          Houdini To Support Linux [vfxpro.com]
          Side Effects Shows Houdini for Linux [vfxpro.com]
          Side Effects Ships Houdini 4.0 [vfxpro.com]

          Nothing against Blender, sued it myself a little, but basicly they were giving it away. As far as a more established commercial entitity (along with the focus to use it for games) is a little more recent happening. We are just comparing different things ;-).

  • Site's seems to be slashdotted already. Does anyone know any mirrors?
  • Am I the only one who has trouble getting plugins to work under Linux/Mozilla? After months of trying things out I finally have the Java plugin working, but every other one I try (including this new Blender plugin I just downloaded) crashes Mozilla.

    That's the main reason I don't use more plugins.
  • by nhavar ( 115351 ) on Wednesday January 30, 2002 @02:46PM (#2926281) Homepage
    This plugin does not handle things in the same way that people think of VRML. Although Blender can work to create and read VRML the product and the plugin do much much more. 1) Blender is cross platform Win/Mac/*nix 2)You can create 3d objects to almost any level of realism that you want to (see the gallery on their site) 3) You can animate within the same package 4) You can create interactive content (i.e. games) in the same package. 5) the plugin/module architecture to create special effects is python driven. The web plugin allows for you to view a 3d object like maybe a product representation and then show it to your potential customer, or 3d games to run over the web, or interactive navigation for the website. There are tons of examples of what the plugin and application can do if one takes a little time to look through the web site. They even have an example of how to use the plugin to create interactive banner ads.

    The tool is different from just about everything out there and once you get used to the method of interaction is seems very easy to get things done. I'm sure that there are plenty of people out there that bitch about the Linux interfaces and how hard they are to use, while many more people find them quick and efficient... give blender a try and see if it falls into this same scenario.

    Stop griping about how it works/doesn't work or comparing it to other products like VRML until you've at least taken a look at what it can do. The user galleries and demos on the site are excellent examples of what can be done by an artist.

    • Blender has one of the most un-intuitive interfaces i have ever seen. I use maya, lightwave and a lot of other p3d products and have tried at least 3 or 4 times toto tackle blender with no result. Is frustrating when you try to use a program and they change the standars "just for fun". Also, when you use this kind of software you dont want to spend much time trying to decypher the workflow of the tools.
      • It appears to me that the problem is with people getting set in their ways. Almost every single person that I've heard chime in about the interface being difficult has been a person who has used multiple tools in the past. These people typically get used to "their" interface and don't like to step out of that "standard". Meanwhile all of the newbies and people just getting into digital art that don't have 500-5,000 to spend on a tool step in and learn Blender in a couple of days and seem to do very well with it's un-intuitive interface. I think it's easier to ditch the product when you already own one or more products that in essence do the same thing. When you don't have those products then you are really forced to take some time to learn how things work and to understand why they work that way.
    • The web plugin allows ... interactive navigation for the website.... They even have an example of how to use the plugin to create interactive banner ads.

      The horror! The horror!

      On this subject, another great example of a fine piece of technology completely misapplied: the page http://www.co.washtenaw.mi.us/DEPTS/ROAD/RDCindex. htm [washtenaw.mi.us] contains a single java applet, whose *only* purpose is to allow you to click on it so you can proceed to the "real" homepage that you came to find. Thus this applet (and, in fact, the whole page) serves no useful purpose other than to keep non-java users out of the website. Why? Why?....

      --Bruce Fields

      • I understand your point. But think of it as being useful to some game designer who decides to market the game and let people try peices on the web to really see what it looks like without needing to download 75 megs worth of demo just to get a general feel for the game. Any tech can be missused by the under educated.
    • The plugin isn't released to enable to view Blender 3D models. The plugin is released to enable games in web browsers. VRML has never been intended as a development platform for games.

      It's the next step in the strategy of Not a Number to develop Blender as game development platform. I think it has never been discussed an Slashot before but since a while game creation is an integral part of Blender. The "realtime" part of Blender gives the opportunity to add sensors, controllers and actuators to every object in a Blender scene. This way user toobject as well as object to object interaction is possible without the need to do any programming. Even for Blender haters, the realtime part is very simple, and in my opinion very intuitive.
      More on gameblender can be found in the onlione gameblender manual [blender.nl] [blender.nl]. Gameblender demo files can be found at the blender community website. The skategirl demo for example is very impressive, at least if you have 3D accelerator card (GF2).

      Now that game creation is possible the next step is the ability to publish the games. Games can always be published as a blender native file. This requires that the person who wants to play the game, has to install Blender and play the game within the Blender program. He can play the game and he can even modify the game.
      The Blender player and Blender plugin are ment for game developers who want to publish their games to people who aren't interested in the Blender program but only in the game. The player makes it possible to publish on CD-ROM, the plugin to publish on the web.

  • Here we go again. Let's release some real cool app, run only on netscape and preferably on linux.
    Willy Webmaster notices it, and wants to use it. He creates a real cool 3d web app and puts in front page on corporate web site. One week later, willy is sacked by management because 85% of the visitors were completely unable to view the site.
    So, the question is, will there be a COM wrapper to put it in IE??????? Or is it, as I suspect, not worth downloading?

    "Nice ap. yeah, reeeeeaaaaalll nice. Next!"
  • The biggest problem with VRML is there was never a full-featured authoring application (which offered access to the whole feature set) combined with a full-featured viewer (which offered access to the whole feature set).

    Blender already has both, so it should prove interesting. Now if I could export some models to a ray-tracer... :)
    • Actually, there is a rudimentary python script available for Blender that exports .RIB files that are then renderable by BMRT (Blue Moon Rendering Tools), a RenderMan compliant ray-tracing renderer.
  • Web3D seems to be a potential big market, at least Macroemdia, Adobe, Intel, Curious Labs and some former MetaCreations guys named Viewpoint seem to think so:


    Adobe Atmosphere [adobe.com]

    Macromedia Shockwave3D, in cooperation with Intel [macromedia.com]

    Curious Labs Avatar Lab [curiouslabs.com]

    Viewpoint VET [viewpoint.com]


    This goes way beyond VRML, and there are some big clients using those technologies. E.g. AOL is using Viewpoint.

  • Does anyone have any insight into why Blender is not open-source? I'm wary about investing time in learning a 3D-modeling environment that is free today, but could easily cost more money than I can afford tomorrow. Does anyone know if NaN plans to truly open-source Blender at some point in the future? Also can anyone compare Blender to open-source programs like Panorama and K3D?
    • by Anonymous Coward
      I doubt about the Open Source part, specially because they aren't 100% Free as in Beer anymore. If you want to get the latest updates and features, like locking files to avoid others editing yours, you've to put $300 or more in their pockets. and they are targeting more the game and plugin part than the animation part.


      Just browse thier site (if it works now) and check the shop (Publisher product) or the forums (some unhappy members).

    • Some of it is. [blender.nl]

      I think this page [blender.nl] gives some good insight into their business model. Basically, Publisher (not free) pays for developement, and thus gets all the new features first. Once development is paid for the features get rolled into Creator (free). I think this sort of model is an excellent way to run a project like this, as long as no one gets greedy. The developers are paid, and therefore more motivated to do the "less sexy" jobs, and all the hardware and software necessary to develope a truely cross-platform package are acquired without relying on donations.

      • Why should NaN be willing to accept anything LESS profit than it can actually make? I think NaN should be able to profit as much as they can - obscenely, even - PROVIDED they produce a product that people want, and price at a point they're willing to pay. There has been a great deal of discussion in the chat forums on NaN's server regarding this topic.
  • by Animats ( 122034 ) on Wednesday January 30, 2002 @04:55PM (#2927115) Homepage
    The Blender player is free. Blender as a 3D package rendering videos is free. But the part of Blender that outputs to the player is not free.

    And the player file format is proprietary.

    There are other 3D players. Shockwave 3D, for example. VRML, despite lack of interest, actually works quite well now, if you have a 3D accelerator board and DSL or better. There's X3D, which is just VRML text expressed as XML, but nobody uses that.

    X3D would be a useful format if it was used, because it's one of the very few non-proprietary, documented 3D scene formats out there. Consider it if you're doing open-source 3D tools.

    I'd like to see X3D import and export for Blender. VRML 2 export has been done as a Python script, so it's possible. Blender itself only does VRML 1.

    • Sorry to rain on this, but Shockwave 3D is really no match for the Blender solution. First of all its limited to Windows and MacOS. And then it's basically a cut-down version of the more than 2 year old NeMo/Virtools (www.virtools.com) App'n'Web 3D package (which in itself is actually quite remarkable - despite the 5000$ a basic package costs).
      Intel and Macromedia 'joined' for Webbased 3D about a year ago to 'develop' a 'new technology' for this. What they actually did was just buy a propretary format - the only one that wasn't yet 'infected' by an 'open source'/'sdk for free' (as in genesis3d/wildtangent) or 'give away for free' (as in Blender) marketing policy.

      This could have turned out to be a major competitor to Blender on the Windoze platform if it weren't for Macromedia integrating the developement enviroment into one of the crappiest pieces of software under the sun - Director.
      Figure this: Shockwave 3D programming is done in Lingo! *gasp* Intercal aside, it's the most hilarious excuse of a PL. With a set of 300 new commands for 3D. This is actually true.

      NaN did it the right way by including Python as PL into Blender. Which also makes it a somewhat more complete solution than VRML.
    • Let me quickly give an update on that :-) Version 2.23 of Blender supports VRML2 import even in the free version (the Creator).

      X3D is still future music...first, we'll probably implement VRML97 extensions for all non VRML-standard datatypes.

      cheers,

      - strubi // (strubi@blender.nl)

  • Ok, so where's the source so that this won't be just another proprietary standard that nobody uses?
  • This plugin might have had legs a year or so ago, when any new internet technology could garner support for no other reason than it was a new internet technology. Now that Macromedia's [macromedia.com] shockwave [shockwave.com] has a pretty impressive 3D engine [shockwave.com], with hardware acceleration, the Blender plugin might not see that much attention. Flash has the 2D animation market pretty much sewn up, and I'm expecting SW to do the same for 3D...
    • maya now has something called 'real time author' that lets you model all your 3d objects, then script behaviour and animations with the same object oriented interface (hypergraph) that you do everything else in.

      you can export all your models along with the behaviours in lingo (director's scripting lang) and tweak to your heart's content. It's all on alias' website.

      pretty cool considering the install base of maya on the creation side and shockwave on the user side.

      but don't forget the cardinal rule of the shockwave plugin: you never have the right version. ever.
  • Just tried it, but can't get it to go at all in Konqueror. In Mozilla I can't figure out how to load it, and netscape crashes my X server when I run the radiosity demo. Anyone else having problems? Thanks,

    David
  • Absolutely no way I'm installing any software on my computers that comes with the conditions below:

    2.2. Server Use. With respect to the Blender Stand Alone Player and Blender 3D Plug-in only, and subject to the terms of this Agreement, you may install one copy of such Software on a computer file server within your internal network for the sole and exclusive purpose of using such Software (from an unlimited number of client computers on your internal network) via (a) the Network File System (NFS) or (b) Windows Terminal Services. Unless otherwise expressly permitted hereunder, no other server or network use of the Software is permitted, including but not limited to using the Software (i) either directly or through commands, data or instructions from or to another computer or (ii) for internal network, internet or web hosting services.

    2.3 No Modification. You may not alter or modify the Software or create a new installer for the Software. The Software is licensed and distributed by NaN for viewing, distributing and sharing .blend files. You are not authorized to integrate or use the Software with any other software.

    3. Intellectual Property Rights. The Software and any copies that you are authorized by NaN to make are the intellectual property of and are owned by NaN and its suppliers. The structure, organization and code of the Software are the valuable trade secrets and confidential information of NaN and its suppliers. The Software is protected by copyright, including without limitation by Dutch Law, international treaty provisions and applicable laws in the country in which it is being used. You may not copy the Software, except as set forth in Section 2 ("Software License"). Any copies that you are permitted to make pursuant to this Agreement must contain the same copyright and other proprietary notices that appear on or in the Software. Unless specifically and expressly permitted by NaN, you agree not to modify, adapt or translate the Software. You also agree not to reverse engineer, decompile, disassemble or otherwise attempt to discover the source code of the Software. Except as expressly stated herein, this Agreement does not grant you any intellectual property rights in the Software and all rights not expressly granted herein are reserved by NaN.

  • The plug-in crashes my Netscape soon after it begins to download a demo.

    The only demo I got to work beyound the pink rabbit screen was "Clown", and it is terribly slow (less than one frame/update per second). Then it crashed on exit from the demo page.

    I run Netscape 4.7 for WinNT 4.0 on 300MHz P3 PC with 1GB RAM.

    Don't forget to turn the Smart Update back OFF...

  • behold for the future

    soon there will be more and more 3d on the net,
    educational, promotional, and just for fun

    online gaming, online sales, online product
    presentations, you name it!
    at our company we use blender for all our 3d!
    animations and a few games we are working on now!

    blender is the fastest modeller available!
    blender renders faster than any other highend 3d
    application!

    blender, once you get addicted...
    you will never let go!

    peter (dotblend)
    http://www.alatis.com
  • I dislike browser plugins for the following reasons:
    1. They make the already-memory-hog browser even more bloated.
    2. They account for 2/3 of crashes/lockups of the browser. Sometimes I'm visiting a really interesting and hard-to-find site (from result 73 of a google search) in another window, and cannot find the thing again after killing and restarting.
    3. Many of them are CPU hogs --- I don't want to waste my Valuable cpu time when I'm not looking at the browser window.
    4. Really interesting things that have to be viewed with a plug-in is generally Big, and not saving them would be a bad waste of bandwidth. If I save them, in most cases I can watch them in a stand-alone application, which is cleaner.
    5. Compatibility is a Big issue.

    Therefore, I think I won't like this plugin, although Blender itself is still quite good.

The price one pays for pursuing any profession, or calling, is an intimate knowledge of its ugly side. -- James Baldwin

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