This post is a call for feedback, about Syntensity's engine (the Intensity Engine) being used on the web. The basic idea is that we - people on the web - should avoid what happened with Flash, a single vendor controlling a closed technology, which became the de facto standard for video and interactive content for many years. Instead, we need an open source solution, not controlled by any one corporation. I think the Intensity Engine is close to being suitable for that, and am looking for feedback on this idea, and help in achieving it.
A big part of the success of the web is its openness: We can run websites on any of several webservers, some of them open source (Apache, lighttpd, nginx, etc.), and visit those websites using likewise open source web browsers (Firefox, Chromium, etc.). That's an amazing achievement. And let's not forget that just a few years ago Internet Explorer was dangerously close to a choke hold on the web browser side.
Video, these days, is often in the tech news: Specifically, using open, standardized technologies to play video on the web, using HTML5. There are some problems along the way, but overall we might be close to getting past video on the web being entirely reliant on Flash - a closed-source product controlled by a single company, and one that doesn't necessarily perform as well or the same on all platforms.
Here I'd like to talk about the "3D Web". The term was overhyped in the past, but really all I mean here is 3D content, mainly games and virtual worlds, that are accessible on the web. This is currently a smaller area than the web in general, or even video on the web, but it is growing in importance. My concern is that the open web should avoid 'Flashification' of 3D content, where a single closed-source product becomes the de-facto standard in the area, like Flash had (and mostly still has) in video, 2D gaming and interactive content. If we want to avoid that, the time is now.
One concrete idea among others is to port the Intensity Engine's rendering system to O3D, and build a browser plugin of the result. The benefit being O3D is already set up as a browser plugin, while the Intensity Engine provides all the other game engine stuff. Alternatively, we can just port the Intensity Engine as-is to be a web browser plugin, assuming that would work with SDL (if not, would need to work on replacing that).
So, I'm looking for feedback about this topic, and ideas and help for how to move it forward. I really feel it isn't just us over here (in 3D gaming) that care about this stuff - lots of people want the web to remain open, and that should include 3D content and games.
Thanks for your responses!
Edit: I posted on relevant mailing lists about this,