The 1984 Super Bowl AD, in which Apple portrayed itself as the renegades breaking big Brother’s rule with a single hammer, was a huge success. Big Brother at the time was IBM.

In 2018, Apple is no longer an insurgent. It has become conservative, closed and insular. It is Big Brother.

Big Brother is everywhere at this WWDC launch, and I’ll just mention two graphic news items:

  • Apple likes to raise USDZ
  • Apple ditches OpenGL

Apple has released a 3D format USDZ for augmented reality

USDZ is a joint venture between Apple and Pixar. The USD format is common in the film special effects industry and was invented by Pixar. As for USDZ, it is essentially a ZIP of the USD file. .

The problem is that there are already enough 3D formats in the world. Take assimP, the most popular format import library in the open source world, for example, which supports up to 50 3D formats.

To solve the problem of 3D formats in AR and VR applications, an industry standard called glTF was proposed several years ago and has been endorsed and supported by the entire industry (apple excepted).

Let’s take a look at the list of companies that support glTF.

Do you see Microsoft on the list? Microsoft has made a real move to support glTF. Office supports glTF natively, such as this powerpoint illustration from @pissang1.

Going back to Apple, what does the launch of USDZ do for developers other than add trouble?

MacOS 10.14 Mojave will ditch OpenGL and OpenCL

First the official transcript

Deprecation of OpenGL and OpenCL Apps built using OpenGL and OpenCL will continue to run in macOS 10.14, But these Legacy Technologies are deprecated in macOS 10.14. Games and graphics-intensive apps that use OpenGL should now adopt Metal. Similarly, apps that use OpenCL for computational tasks should now adopt Metal and Metal Performance Shaders. Metal is designed from the ground up to provide the best access to the modern GPUs on iOS, macOS, and tvOS devices. Metal avoids the overhead inherent in legacy technologies and exposes the latest graphics processing functionality. Unified support for graphics and compute in Metal lets your apps efficiently utilize the latest rendering  techniques.Copy the code

What is a surprise

We got rid of OpenGL and OpenCL and the old apps still worked on macOS 10.14, which won't last a few days. Please surrender and change to Metal as soon as possible. By the way, the OpenCL app next door is also moving to Metal and Metal Performance Shaders. Metal is the best, best, best, best. The old API was bad. Metal is the best, best, best, best.Copy the code

Are OpenGL and OpenCL obsolete? Yes, they are flawed and should be phased out.

In fact, to address these flaws, an industry standard called Vulkan was proposed in 2016 and has been endorsed and supported by the entire industry (again, apple excluded).

But what did Apple do? OpenGL games will not run on future macOS without Metal overrides.

Next door, Microsoft, which has been lambasted for pushing DirectX 12 for Windows 10, has been honest enough to support games from the past, such as DirectX 8.1-based Warcraft 3.

It’s not just games that are affected. Blender, the open source 3d modeling software, uses both OpenGL and OpenCL. How much of the code had to be rewritten because of Apple’s decision?

Processing, openFrameworks, some of the most popular creative coding tools for digital artists, use OpenGL at the base, and the developer community is built around OpenGL. Are they forced to defect to Windows because of Apple’s decision?

Today, isn’t it ironic when we compare jobs’ famous quote with his?

Related Technical articles

  • glTF
  • Vulkan
  • OpenGL
  • Processing
  • openFrameworks – Democratizing Visual Computing