Report on SIGGRAPH 2012August 23, 2012 by admin
Written by Cameron Kiddle, Senior Technical Product Manager
This month, I was one of 21,000 attendees at SIGGRAPH 2012, the premiere conference and exhibition on computer graphics and interactive techniques, in Los Angeles. Exhibitors had the latest and greatest software and hardware technologies on display in the areas of rendering, animation, design, special effects, 3D visualization, motion capture and much more. My task, in attending, was to gauge interest and use of graphics-intensive applications on the Web, on mobile devices and in the cloud.
SIGGRAPH 2012 did feature a dedicated speaker track on mobile graphics and a variety of sessions on standards for 3D visualization on the Web, such as X3D, X3DOM, REST-3D and WebGL. Most of the applications built using these standards were still prototypes, however there was strong evidence that the standards have significantly matured and are getting closer to being ready for widespread adoption.
At the exhibition, most of the software applications on display were still stand alone desktop/workstation applications. There were several exhibitors displaying applications accessible on the Web and/or mobile devices, but most of these were for viewing 3D models and not creating them. Esri demonstrated a new WebGL-based client, which can be used to allow the public to view and provide feedback on city architectural plans created with their CityEngine software. TechViz demonstrated how their 3D immersive visualization software could be used in a collaborative mode between remote sites.
Cloud services for offline rendering and asset management were prevalent, but there was only one cloud service that I came across for real-time rendering — LuSt, by Luxion and Sabertooth. LuSt is a real-time 3D rendering Web service that allows for designers and marketers to show all possible configurations/views of a model, such as a car, to clients without having to pre-render all possible views beforehand. An HTML5 client allows the service to be accessed from the Web or mobile devices. LuSt also provides a collaborative viewing option for multiple parties in different locations.
PureWeb has the capability to go beyond what the solutions mentioned above have to offer by allowing an existing application to be Web, mobile or cloud enabled not only for viewing purposes, but also for model design/creation purposes. PureWeb also allows for UI customization for different devices and has powerful collaborative capabilities that let multiple users simultaneously interact with the same application.
In asking software vendors about customer demand for Web, mobile or cloud based access to their applications, most indicated that the biggest barrier for customers was concern over privacy and data security. PureWeb provides a solution to this barrier by keeping the application data on the server, behind the corporate firewall, and only pushing rendered images to the mobile device or browser. This eliminates the worry of sensitive data being exposed should a user’s device become compromised.
Overall, I had a great time at the tradeshow and was able to learn how the industry’s state of art graphics applications are progressing towards Web, mobile and cloud capabilities. For those of you seeking help in migrating a graphics-intensive application to the Web, cloud or mobile devices, we’d love to show you how PureWeb may be able to help.