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Exciting changes for Papervision3D

You’ve probably seen the official announcement on the Papervision3D blog already but I just wanted to summarise here and give my take on the situation.

Of course, Ralph has left, and i’ll miss him. But smart people like him need constant new challenges and I have no doubt that he will move on to bigger and better things! And I seem to be seeing him just as much as before!

Papervision3D 3.0
So we’re moving on with PV3.0, which will be our Flash Player 10 optimised version, rebuilt from scratch. Tim’s already making great headway with some of the core code such as how we handle rotations (with quaternions at the heart of every DO3D) and even some niceness with frustum clipping.

Openness
I think we’ve been guilty in the past of a lack of transparency in our process. When we all work hard for a living, it can be hard to make sure that we keep the community updated with what’s going on.

So we’ve decided this time to make the source code for 3.0 available on github as we’re working on it. If you have something to contribute, you can fork the code and have a go. If we like it, we’ll add it in!

New team members
Which brings us to the fact that we want new team members. If you do cool work with the code base we’ll most likely ask you to join us. Already we’ve enlisted Ben Hopkins who caught our attention with some crazy PixelBender experiments. Perhaps you could too?

Backwards compatibility
There are many things that need to be changed in the new version, so we’ve made a rule. That rule is that we’ll keep the API the same as PV2.0 unless there’s a very good reason to change it.

One of the more notable changes is that the axis system has changed, the z-axis now comes out of the screen rather than going into it. This is to bring PV3D in line with pretty much all the other serious 3D engines, and it should also make it easier to port code from OpenGL.

Papervision2.1 support
We realise there are some issues still to resolve in 2.1 and I for one, am going to continue using this branch for some time. So although there is a lot of energy and excitement around PV3, it doesn’t mean we’ve forgotten about the older code base.

I’m really really excited about these changes, and the renewed sense of energy that it brings. I believe the Papervision team members are among the best Flash programmers in the world, and it’s such a privilege to be a part of it.

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