The Web3D Consortium has announced the public availability of the draft X3D ('Extensible 3D') royalty-free standard which will be submitted to the International Standards Organization (ISO) in August 2002. The normative Annex A of 'Part 3: Data encodings' presents the Extensible Markup Language (XML) encoding in the form of a DTD; there is also a draft XML Schema for the Extensible 3D (X3D) tagset, representing the draft Virtual Reality Modeling Language (VRML) 200x. The X3D standard "enables new opportunities for the creation and deployment of state-of-the-art 3D graphics on small, lightweight web clients, and the integration of high-performance 3D into broadcast and embedded devices." Web3D also announced that the X3D Interactive profile "has been accepted by the Motion Picture Experts Group (MPEG) as the basis for lightweight, interactive 3D graphics in the MPEG-4 multimedia standard; this profile defines a small footprint subset of X3D that enables interactive 3D functionality for MPEG-4 Systems."
X3D specification parts description: 'Part 1: Architecture and base components' contains the abstract functional specification for the X3D framework, and definitions of the standardized components and profiles. 'Part 2: Application programmer interfaces' contains the abstract functional specification for Application Programmer Interfaces (APIs) to the X3D runtime system, and bindings to various programming languages and component object models. 'Part 3: Data encodings' contains the abstract data encoding specification for X3D, and bindings to various encoding formats such as XML and VRML97 UTF-8.
From the 2002-02-26 announcement:
The Web3D Consortium, as an active member of the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), is tightly integrating X3D with other W3C standards, including the Extensible Markup Language (XML), the Document Object Model (DOM) and Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG). Tight integration of these standards will allow developers to combine text, audiovisual content, graphics, animations and data to deliver a seamless and compelling end user experience.
X3D enables new opportunities for the creation and deployment of state-of-the-art 3D graphics on small, lightweight web clients, and the integration of high-performance 3D into broadcast and embedded devices. X3D satisfies these demanding requirements with an advanced componentized architecture that enables compact client players with add-on components, as well as a set of profiles designed to meet the demands of sophisticated applications, including: an Interchange Profile for exchanging X3D content among authoring and publishing systems; an Interactive Profile to support delivery of lightweight interactive animations; an Extensibility Profile to enable the development of add-on components and robust applications; and a VRML97 Profile to ensure interoperability between X3D and VRML97 legacy content.
In related news, the Web3D Consortium announced today that the X3D Interactive profile has been accepted by the Motion Picture Experts Group (MPEG) as the basis for lightweight, interactive 3D graphics in the MPEG-4 multimedia standard. The X3D Interactive Profile defines a small footprint subset of X3D that enables interactive 3D functionality for MPEG-4 Systems. By enabling interactive 3D for devices with limited processing power, the X3D Interactive Profile defines a standard for 3D destined for low-power computers, set-top boxes, mobile phones, and personal digital assistants as well as more capable devices such a desktop devices and gaming consoles. The Interactive Profile will enable interoperability between X3D and MPEG-4 content, providing a consistent platform for 3D graphics and application development across Web and broadcast environments.
- Announcement 2002-02-26: "X3D Open Web3D Standard Now Available. Adoption by MPEG-4 Group, Cooperation With World Wide Web Consortium, and Open Source Implementation to Propel Commercial Adoption of Royalty-Free Standard."
- Web3D Specifications
- Information technology -- Computer graphics and image processing -- X3D. Draft February 24, 2002 or later. Reference: ISO/IEC xxxxx:200x, X3D.
- Part 3: Data encodings. Annex A: (normative) Extensible Markup Language (XML) encoding
- Draft XML DTD [cache]
- XML Schema X3D tagset [cache]
- "VRML (Virtual Reality Modeling Language) and X3D" - Main reference page.