[X3D-Public] authoring environments and browsers: why both?

Don Brutzman brutzman at nps.edu
Tue Oct 13 11:54:33 PDT 2009

[sorry for the flurry of late email, my previous posts had been blocked.]

John Carlson wrote:
> Why are there both authoring environments and browers/players?  
> Shouldn't a browser be able to support/deliver an authoring application?
> I realize the same dichotomy has existed with HTML as well--but there 
> are HTML browsers which support editing, right?  Is there something 
> missing from VRML/X3D which only authoring environments provide?  
> Would providing these within the context of VRML/X3D make a better 
> standard?
> I can use vim to write vim, emacs to write emacs, eclipse to write 
> eclipse, netbeans to write netbeans.  Would the combination of 
> netbeans, Xj3D and X3D-Edit be considered the solution of choice?   
> What is the best way to author 3D authoring environments?  Is it just 
> that we aren't there yet?

apologies for late reply

we have improved the ability to edit live virtual environments by adding
DIS Player/Recorder to X3D-Edit.

still don't have satisfactory updating of embedded Xj3D viewer, but
launching external viewers is pretty simple now.

the ability to edit .php and .jsp is also pretty interesting.  will be
looking further at how to deploy scene updates to servers.  also already
have embedded XMPP chat plus version control.  can also run Ant build
scripts, which is a pretty portable way to deploy system-oriented tasks
across platforms.

recently i've been adding authoring capabilities from another direction:
making prototypes of broad use available on the node palette.  drag+drop
provides an ExternProtoDeclare/ProtoInstance combination.

so we are slowly but steadily proceeding to improve X3D-Edit in the
directions that you describe.  thanks for the continued insights.


p.s. Amaya is an excellent example of an HTML/SVG browser with both
authoring and viewing capabilities, it is designed with that range
of capabilities in mind.


all the best, Don
Don Brutzman  Naval Postgraduate School, Code USW/Br           brutzman at nps.edu
Watkins 270   MOVES Institute, Monterey CA 93943-5000 USA  work +1.831.656.2149
X3D, virtual worlds, underwater robots, XMSF  http://web.nps.navy.mil/~brutzman

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