With all this HTML5 talk, we are watching the internet turn 3D. Awesome! I like it, but with all the focus on WebGL specifically, most people simply count out Flash all together. But we have to be very careful now. Flash has dominated in web animation since the Macromedia days, back in 1996! That’s a full 15 years it’s been out. Now owned by Adobe, there is a lot of reason to also enter the 3D browser market-place. They did the same thing with Video, using FLV. Who’s to say that Adobe won’t step up to the challenge for 3D inside browsers?
Well, they have been working on their version of 3D browser technology via Flash, code-named Molehill, and now Flash Stage3D API. Many companies, like Scribd, after already investing years into Flash, have made a full turn to HTML5. YouTube, as of Jan 2010, is fully HTML5 compliant.
But being fully HTML5 compliant does not mean you can run WebGL. WebGL is an extension of HTML5. Very different from the WebGL vs Stage3D battle. Many of these fully HTML5 compliant sites have zero WebGL implemented at all. So, the jury is still out to see who takes the 3D stage. With Apple deciding to go completely HTML5/WebGL, and Microsoft holding off and not even releasing WebGL in Internet Explorer 10, we could see two fronts again be drawn, where WebGL takes the hit due to the lack of Internet Explorer support.
It’s fun to sit on the bleeding edge, watching these technologies be developed. Take a look at some Stage3D videos below: