[NTG-context] U3D (embedded 3D objects)

Matthias Weber matweber at indiana.edu
Mon Jan 30 21:36:50 CET 2006

Hello Hans,

thanks for the information. Here is where I am:

I am using and talking about 3D objects all the time as part of my  
professional life,
and it would be nice to be able to include them as part of PDF files  
both for
presentations and class notes (which I do both in CoNTeXt). As with  
Acrobat 7, "one" can embed
such 3D graphics in a PDF, Acrobat then shows (very much like with a  
movie) a surrounding
box  within which one can rotate, move scale the 3D image. I f  
available, I would replace most of my
3D graphics with 3D objects ("surface"). This is of course a rather  
specialized desire, I suppose.

I can say that it does work, even on a Mac, I tried a LaTeX example.  
I don't know whether it works via a plug-in
or is coded directly in Acrobat, I only know it works with Acrobat 7  
without installing anything else.

There is one problem though: None of my software or own code  
currently exports into the required format U3D.
If support was already available within ConTeXt, I would be motivated  
to write some code so that I can export my
3D files to U3D. That not being the case, I think we let it rest here  
until we both have nothing better to do (...).


On Jan 30, 2006, at 7:02 AM, Hans Hagen wrote:

> Matthias Weber wrote:
>> Hello,
>> is there support for .u3d files in ConTeXt available or planned? This
>> would take advantage of Acrobat 7 support
>> for these 3D data  files. There is a LaTeX package (http://
>> www.tug.org/tex-archive/macros/latex/contrib/movie15/)
>> that does that, and it even works on my Mac.
>  (mime type controlled i assume that you refer to support for  
> graphic formats that depend on specific plug-ins; contrary to the  
> older support for movies, such features need a bit more, in  
> particular a relationship between the part of the screen where the  
> stuff is shown and the place where the resources are embedded and  
> refered to. the framework for that has been present for a while now  
> (was implemented right after 6 came out) but in practice only a  
> fraction of the plugins / graphic formats work ok (for instance,  
> smill based graphics/sequences are rather plug-in dependent and  
> buggy); the mediashow stuff on the site and in the distributions  
> implements this renderign)
> \definerenderingwindow
>   [example]
>   [width=320pt,height=150pt,frame=off,
>    background=color,backgroundcolor=gray,
>    openpageaction=StartCurrentRendering,
>    closepageaction=NextPage]% StopCurrentRendering]
> \useexternalrendering[example-1][audio/mpeg]                    
> [eldorado.mp3]
> \useexternalrendering[example-2][audio/mpeg]                    
> [myst-12.mp3]
>  \useexternalrendering[example-3][application/x-shockwave-flash] 
> [http://localhost/mb.swf] [auto]
>  \useexternalrendering[example-4][application/x-shockwave-flash] 
> [celebration.swf]
>  \useexternalrendering[example-5][video/quicktime]               
> [p1000726.mov]
>  \useexternalrendering[example-6][application/smil]              
> [quadratic_map.smi]
> \def\renderingmenu[#1]%
>   {\hbox
>      {\setupbuttons[width=2.5em]%
>       \button{\symbol[StartRendering]} [StartRendering{#1}]\enspace
>       \button{\symbol[StopRendering]}  [StopRendering{#1}]\enspace
>       \button{\symbol[PauseRendering]} [PauseRendering{#1}]\enspace
>       \button{\symbol[ResumeRendering]}[ResumeRendering{#1}]}}
> \renderingmenu[example-1]\blank
> \renderingmenu[example-2]\blank
> \renderingmenu[example-3]\blank
> \renderingmenu[example-4] \placefigure{A ShockWave} 
> {\placerenderingwindow[example][example-4]} \page
> \renderingmenu[example-5] \placefigure{A Movie} 
> {\placerenderingwindow[example][example-5]} \page
> \renderingmenu[example-6] \placefigure{A Smile} 
> {\placerenderingwindow[example][example-6]}
> etc etc
> (see x-res-50 for other examples)
> much of the plugin behaviou can be tuned with key/values in pdf,  
> but it is rather messy (kind of: the plugin provides this, so we  
> need these and those keys): no clear consistent model is present);
> in order for me to provide more detailed support, i first need to  
> cook up a more or less consistent control model (not too much pdf  
> dependent) since whenever possible, i keep context's interface  
> independent of the pdf way of doing things
> so, if you want more detailed support for this i need (1) proper  
> conforming resources, and (2) a description of what is needed  
> (which is not the same as a cut and paste from the pdf spec with  
> all possible features) and (3) time and (4) motivation (i.e. it  
> should be usable, used, etc etc;)
> implementing pdf related features just because it's in pdf is no  
> longer a good motive since pdf specs/functionality keeps changing,  
> esp in those areas it's rather instable
> -----------------------------------------------------------------
>                                           Hans Hagen | PRAGMA ADE
>               Ridderstraat 27 | 8061 GH Hasselt | The Netherlands
>      tel: 038 477 53 69 | fax: 038 477 53 74 | www.pragma-ade.com
>                                              | www.pragma-pod.nl
> -----------------------------------------------------------------
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