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  3D applets  (Read 1806 times)
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Offline erikd

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Medals: 16
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Maximumisness


« Posted 2007-09-05 12:40:44 »

I've been asked for a commercial (non-game) project which features a 3D applet, so I'm currently researching what would be the best/most reliable option.

So far I've been thinking about the following options:

LWJGL:
pros: small, I'm familiar with it, can use jME (?)
cons: doesn't seem reliable enough as an applet yet, crashing browsers and such (?)

JOGL:
pros: what would be the pros of JOGL applets compared to LWJGL? (are JOGL applets more reliable?)
cons: bigger than LWJGL

Java3D:
pros: D3D support on Windows (more reliable?), good scenegraph
cons: size. Is there a way to deploy J3D applets in a platform independend way, without relying on J3D being installed? I heard there are issues with this on Mac (having J3D installed by default).

jPCT:
pros: has both software rendering and LWJGL, nice and small, easy to use
cons: reliability when using LWJGL (does it support LWJGL applets?)

Preferrably, I'd like to be able to use some kind of scenegraph to do the difficult stuff for me, because the scenes can potentially get quite complex. Therefor, a reliable hardware accellerated option is preferred, but a sw renderer as fall-back would be a nice to have.

Any thoughts?

Offline SimonH
« Reply #1 - Posted 2007-09-05 19:59:27 »

I looked long and hard at this and plumped for jPCT in software only mode. My game has been played hundreds of times without a single 3D bug reported. Looking at the LWJGL, JOGL & Java3D forums seems to show serious reliability problems with all three...
Which is more important to you; looks or reliability? If the former I'd go for LWJGL, if the latter jPCT.

People make games and games make people
Offline erikd

JGO Ninja


Medals: 16
Projects: 4
Exp: 14 years


Maximumisness


« Reply #2 - Posted 2007-09-05 21:16:49 »

Thanks for your input  Smiley

Actually, reliability is about as important as looks (or rather, performance).
The thing is, if rendering is too slow, it will completely miss the point, and I'm afraid sw rendering only will be too slow since the applet has to be like 800x600 with potentially quite complex scenes. So, software rendering is a nice-to-have, but I'm afraid it will be not be enough by itself.
A pop-up saying "This applet doesn't run on Opera" or something would be better in this case than having a bad user experience. OTOH a browser crash for 20% of the users for example is big no-no. Webstart is also not an option, it really has to be an embedded applet.
So I think it has to be primarily a hardware accellerated applet, the most reliable option, which is not too big to download.
I know I'm kind of vague here, but I'm not at liberty to talk too much about it yet  Smiley

I'm currently leaning towards jPCT somewhat, but I haven't ruled out the other options just yet (maybe even a non-java solution).



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Offline SimonH
« Reply #3 - Posted 2007-09-06 02:57:44 »

(maybe even a non-java solution)
I thought this way also - there's Shockwave 3D eg http://www.maidmarian.com/Sherwood.htm/
Flash has some 3D stuff also eg http://www.glenrhodes.com/wolf/myRay.html
It's all down to the actual application and the budget...

People make games and games make people
Offline princec

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Medals: 342
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Eh? Who? What? ... Me?


« Reply #4 - Posted 2007-09-07 20:11:10 »

LWJGL applets seem to work ok in IE and FF, just not Opera usually. Might just be that we haven't figured out the correct magic runes yet. Why not just put up a Webstart link for Opera users (and an explanation?)

Cas Smiley

Offline erikd

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Medals: 16
Projects: 4
Exp: 14 years


Maximumisness


« Reply #5 - Posted 2007-09-08 01:13:59 »

LWJGL applets seem to work ok in IE and FF, just not Opera usually. Might just be that we haven't figured out the correct magic runes yet. Why not just put up a Webstart link for Opera users (and an explanation?)

Cas Smiley

The requirement was an applet, because there needs to be some kind of interaction with the webpage and I don't know if that's possible through webstart. Worth figuring out though, as a workaround... Another option might be (if I'll use jPCT) to use the software renderer when using Opera.
However, maybe IE and FF is good enough, I'll have to discuss that.

Offline EgonOlsen
« Reply #6 - Posted 2007-09-12 08:26:28 »

jPCT:
pros: has both software rendering and LWJGL, nice and small, easy to use
cons: reliability when using LWJGL (does it support LWJGL applets?)
It supports the AWTGLCanvas, so it supports LWJGL in an applet. But for loading the native libs and such, you are on your own. But there is this new applet loader in the latest distributions of LWJGL, that should make this task easier.

Offline DzzD
« Reply #7 - Posted 2007-09-22 10:07:12 »

did you think about 3DzzD ? it is software 1.1 and can switch hardware at runtime , it use 3DS files (also import hierarchy and local objet space + pivot) and can play 3DS animations, it also include a scenegraph disconnected from the renderer with simple and easy to use functionalities. it is specially designed for applet.

last but not least, i am open to answer/correct any questions/bugs you may find.

Offline erikd

JGO Ninja


Medals: 16
Projects: 4
Exp: 14 years


Maximumisness


« Reply #8 - Posted 2007-09-23 01:03:20 »

did you think about 3DzzD ? it is software 1.1 and can switch hardware at runtime , it use 3DS files (also import hierarchy and local objet space + pivot) and can play 3DS animations, it also include a scenegraph disconnected from the renderer with simple and easy to use functionalities. it is specially designed for applet.

last but not least, i am open to answer/correct any questions/bugs you may find.

Oh, I always thought 3DzzD was software only, so I didn't consider it yet but I'll definitely look into it.
It's still in design phase and the final rendering API for the client hasn't been decided on yet.

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