[x3d-public] Essential Characteristics of X3D

Leonard Daly Leonard.Daly at realism.com
Sun Nov 20 09:16:08 PST 2016

Thank you Doug, Yves, and Joe. They have been having an important 
conversation on the process of making changes to the X3D specification. 
This is a very important conversation to have; however, it is not the 
one on topic. I would like to steer the conversation of the essential 
characteristics of X3D. If people wish to continue the conversation on 
making changes, please change the email subject. [original post: 

I wish to summarize the positions that have been stated. I attempted to 
best understand and summarize, but I may have gotten it wrong -- please 

Doug Sanden's position is that if the Web3D Consortium calls it X3D, 
then it is X3D. To him it is mark of authenticity that is essential.

Yves Piguet is primarily concerned with the process of getting changes 
(new nodes, new profiles, corrections, etc.) into the standard and what 
that may force him to do. If he stated what is an essential 
characteristic of X3D, I did not catch it.

Joe did not state a position on the essential characteristics of X3D.

So to Doug's point. If Web3D Consortium labels something X3D, then that 
is pretty much all that matters. Pushing things a bit, if some reason 
(and I'm not implying this is or might going to happen) the Consortium 
calls an imperative library written in FORTRAN that only deals with 
volumes (no surfaces) X3D, then that would be X3D and the existing 
features and syntax that we all know would not.

For me, the minimal essential characteristics are:
1) Extensible
2) Support old content (this can be through an automatic conversion for 
most content)
3) Declarative
4) Displays same/similar on all capable displays

The above could easily define A-Frame or other declarative languages, so 
there must be something more. It's not the encoding because there are 3 
ISO standards plus 2 in development. It's not just interaction, because 
there is the Interchange profile that is X3D that does not have 
interaction. I know there must be more in the essential characteristics 
list, but at this time I am not sure what that might be.

*Leonard Daly*
3D Systems & Cloud Consultant
President, Daly Realism - /Creating the Future/
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