Tuesday, February 16, 2010

GPU-accelerated browser

It's inevitable (and Apple, Adobe, and Mozilla seem to be pushing hard here), but I found a fun twist on Google's part: pixel shaders for the web! I heard Adobe's pixel shader support (PixelBender) is iffy distribution-wise, but O3D (... and thus likely WebGL?) seem like a happier route. The downer is that this means HLSL is rearing its ugly head even further.

Fun implication on my browser-based browser hackery -- we can prototype naive hardware accelerated rendering within the browser!

A lot more fun on the Google gallery for O3D.


A. said...

Is your comment on HLSL directed at all real-time shading languages (GLSL, Cg...) or just HLSL? (Just being curious, it seemed cleaner and more convenient than GLSL when I last checked.)

Leo Meyerovich said...

Pretty much all. Vertigo might have had something nicer, but I don't remember all the parts it covered. There has also been some cool stuff focusing on the IDE side.. but all these shader languages feel like a subset of Pascal extended with float4s.

There have been some nicer GPGPU languages, however -- e.g., Copperhead is essentially an ML embedding within Python (though I don't think it does well with compiling down closures).