JavaTM Virtual Reality Applications and
Web-based Virtual Reality (VR)
Special Status Report
The Java3DTM Non-Decision
Practical widespread use of web-based Java3DTM applications such as the
3D scene browser require that web browsers be
enabled for operation with Java3D.
The need to manually enable browsers for Java3D operation precludes
widespread use of 3D applications such as CM Surveyor since many web users
do not have the expertise or inclination
to perform manual enabling. Nor will automatic download and installation
of packages such as Java Plug-inTM and
Java3D suffice because the majority of web users do not have high bandwidth
connections needed to support download of Java Plug-in or Java3D.
The only viable solution to enable widespread use of Java3D-based web
applications is to have Java Plug-in and Java3D preinstalled in
the browser out-of-the-box by the by the computer hardware vendors.
This will result in web browsers such as Internet Explorer being
Java3D-enabled with no action required on the part of web users.
Sun is in the
process of negotiating contracts with major computer hardware vendors
to have Java Plug-in (or its equivalent,
JavaSETM) preinstalled on future
systems, including in browsers
such as Internet Explorer. However, Sun has indicated they have
no plans, now or in the future, to include Java3D with Java Plug-in/JavaSE,
or otherwise have Java3D pre-installed as part of their contracts with
computer hardware system vendors.
Until Sun reverses this decision (or non-decision) to incorporate
Java3D in standard out-of-the-box Java web installations, 3D web browsing
will be delayed for many years until such time as the majority of web
users have high speed connections capable of supporting dynamic downloads
of large packages such as Java3D.
What Can I Do?
Aside from manual enabling of your browser
for Java3D operation, there
is one other thing you can do that might make a difference. Send a
short email to scott.mcnealy at sun.com requesting that Java3D be
included in the web browser Java enablement contracts being negotiated
with major computer hardware vendors. If Mr. McNealy (the CEO of Sun)
is made aware that significant public interest in Java3D on the web exists,
he can make it happen.