23 November 2006

OpenGL - The Future Looks Rosey

In the recent past the perceived as slow-moving OpenGL ARB (Architecture Review Board) handed over the guidance of OpenGL to the Kronos Group. The Kronos Group were responsible for the very popular OpenGL ES standard for embedded devices.

Something that had completely bypassed me on the OpenGL website was a new Pipeline Newsletter for the latest goings on in OpenGL land. There are currently two volumes:In the first volume we are introduced to the OpenGL Ecosystem Working Group which was formed in March 2006. This group is going to do all the work as developers we will probably find most useful - examples, documentation, testing, etc. Most interesting though is the thought of the OpenGL SDK which I will come back to.

According to the second newsletter there will be two OpenGL specification releases in 2007, with a substantial restructuring of the object model. Also there is some information about the work for OpenGL on other platforms. Just the communication from these newsletters makes OpenGL seem much faster moving.

But back to the OpenGL SDK. As the Ecosystem Working Group put it, developers want a single SDK for OpenGL that is ratified by the ARB. This would also contain the documentation and examples and more. In the newsletter article "One SDK To Rule Them All" more detail is revealed. If all goes to plan then this should be a very impressive start. One part of particular interest is the suggestion there will be more to the SDK, with layers that abstract away platform specifics. THis can only be a good thing - no need to reinvent the wheel.