Computer Graphics World

April 2011

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Intel Introduces Xeon E3 Family Intel has optimized the second-genera- tion Intel Core processor family to create the Intel Xeon processor E3-1200 prod- uct family for professional performance on workstations. When combined with the Intel C206 chipset, these processors power entry- level workstations that merge the tradi- tional strengths of the professional work- station with a new processor-based Intel HD graphics technology to tackle entry- level data analysis, CAD, digital anima- tion, and 3D imaging challenges. The workstation platform features Intel’s fi rst micro-architecture that combines visual and 3D graphics technology with performance-leading microprocessors on a single chip. This is the fi rst entry-level workstation platform to integrate profes- sional-level graphics technology, Intel HD Graphics P3000, onto the processor, enabling visual and 3D graphics capabili- ties previously only available to entry-level workstation users with a separate graph- ics card. Intel is also extending support for its vPro technology to these workstations, offering a broad set of security features that makes it easier for IT to manage work- stations both physically and remotely. The Intel Xeon E3-1200 processor family also supports Error Correcting Code (ECC) memory, which is typi- cally only found on high-end systems. ECC memory automatically detects and corrects up to 99.9998 percent of memory errors to improve data integrity and system uptime. Since the probability of data errors increases with an increase in the amount of memory, this feature is useful for content creators working with large and complex designs. In addition to workstations and servers, Intel vPro Technology can be found in a variety of innovative applications beyond PCs, such as retail, digital signage, and banking devices. PRODUCT: PROCESSORS Khronos Readies Final WebGL 1.0 Spec The Khronos Group used the setting of the 2011 Game Developers Conference to launch its fi nal WebGL 1.0 specifi cation for enabling hard- ware-accelerated 3D graphics in HTML5 Web browsers without the need for plug-ins. WebGL defi nes a JavaScript binding to OpenGL ES 2.0, allowing rich 3D graphics within a browser on any platform supporting the industry-standard OpenGL or OpenGL ES graphics APIs. WebGL has the support of major silicon and browser vendors, including Apple, Google, Mozilla, and Opera, with multiple browsers already ship- ping with WebGL implementations, including the beta releases for Mozilla Firefox 4.0, all channels of Google Chrome 9.0, an Opera preview build, and Apple Mac OS Safari builds. Tim Johansson, lead graphics developer at Opera Software, says “Once WebGL becomes pervasive, we can look forward to a new era in creativity on the Web.” WebGL leverages the pervasive availability of OpenGL ES 2.0 graphics on almost all browser-capable desktop, mobile, and embedded platforms, as well as the recent developments in Web technology, including the massive increases in JavaScript performance. The ability for Web develop- ers to directly access OpenGL-class graphics directly from JavaScript and freely mix 3D with other HTML content will enable a new wave of innova- tion in Web gaming, educational and training applications, and graphically rich user interfaces to make the Web more enjoyable, productive, and intui- tive (see “Universal Appeal,” pg. 18). There is already a thriving middleware ecosystem around WebGL to provide a wide diversity of Web developers with the ability to easily create compelling 3D content for WebGL-enabled browsers. These tools include: C3DL, CopperLicht, EnergizeGL, GammaJS, GLGE, GTW, O3D, OSG. JS, SceneJS, SpiderGL, TDL, Three.js, and X3DOM. In addition to the WebGL specifi cation, Khronos has created a compre- hensive WebGL test suite that can be downloaded free of charge at Implementers of WebGL-capable browsers can run the test suite and upload their passing test results in order to designate their implementations as conforming to the WebGL specifi cation. “WebGL enables an entire new class of applications on the Web. Being able to take advantage of fi rst-class 3D hardware acceleration in a browser on both desktop and mobile [platforms] allows Web developers to create compelling and immersive experiences for their users,” says Vlad Vukicevic of Mozilla and chair of the WebGL working group. In addition, Khronos also announced the formation of the WebCL work- ing group to explore the possibility of defi ning a JavaScript binding to the Khronos OpenCL standard for heterogeneous parallel computing. WebCL creates the potential to harness GPU and multi-core CPU paral- lel processing from a Web browser, enabling signifi cant acceleration of applications, such as image and video processing and advanced physics for WebGL games. Companies interested in participating in the defi nition of WebCL should contact Khronos at The Khronos Group is an industry consortium creating open standards to enable the authoring and acceleration of parallel computing, graphics, and dynamic media on a wide variety of platforms and devices. Khronos standards include OpenGL, OpenGL ES, WebGL, OpenCL, OpenMAX, OpenVG, OpenSL ES, OpenKODE, and Collada. ` ` NEWS: STANDARDS April 2011 5

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