A Year Ago: British VR firm releases 3D browser

Originally published Mon, 05 Oct 1998 14:54:54 GMT

British VR pioneer Superscape has released its latest 3D browser Viscape Universal.

In contrast with previous versions, Viscape Universal reads two previously incompatible file formats. Superscape's own SVR format and VRML 97.

SVR is a real time 3D modelling language with a heritage going back to DOS. Once seen as a serious contender in the now under-rated Virtual Reality market, SVR continues to be used in proprietary 3D applications and on Intel's PII showcase, MediaDome.

With SGI's withdrawal of funding for Cosmo -- the de-facto VRML 97 standard browser -- earlier this year, Viscape Universal becomes the only VRML97 browser in corporate development, providing a possible avenue for a re-emergence of SVR as a format with a large base of capable browsers.

VRML 97 is the open standards format for delivery of 3D content over the Web

Key features of Viscape Universal:

  • intuitive navigation system requiring no user set-up for ease of use

  • advanced graphics renderer that runs on all systems using Microsoft DirectX

  • enhances VRML content using Microsoft Directshow supports fully-spatialised sound

  • fast frame rates on standard hardware

  • uses fitted accelerator cards for optimum performance

  • compliance checking on VRML files for exploring more advanced applications with sophisticated behaviours.

  • supports Java and ECMAScript.