|What is Flash 3D?|
|Friday, 14 May 2010 00:00|
First off we should probably ask: what is Flash? In true professional fashion I asked Wikipedia and it told me: "Adobe Flash (formerly Macromedia Flash) is a multimedia platform used to add animation, video, and interactivity to Web pages". You should be familiar with Flash content as it has become commonplace across the web. It is most often used for animated banner ads, games and occasionally full websites. If you can spin around the 3D camera on our homepage or have a play with Norbert the sheep then you will already have the Flash player installed on your machine. Up until relatively recently Flash content has been limited to the 2D domain, but then a group of clever people realised that following the complete overhaul of Flash's programming language and the ever-increasingly impressive array of creations made in Flash that it would be possible to use Flash to display 3D graphics. A team outside Adobe developed libraries of code that could be freely used by Flash programmers to start creating 3D content with Flash.
Because of the nature of the Flash 3D project (it is an open-source project) it is always evolving and improving. We at Web 3D Studio have been helping to develop the Flash 3D project and come up with efficient ways to improve the speed and the quality of Flash 3D.
All of our Web 3D projects are either created with Java or with Flash. As it stands, Java is ideal for generating high quality 3D visuals, but may run into memory issues when attempting larger, more dynamic software projects. Flash is the opposite -with Flash 3D we can still achieve high quality visuals, though they may lack the visual edge of their Java counterparts. For this reason we continue to use Java for projects where top-notch visual quality is paramount, but where advanced interactivity isn't needed. For more dynamic projects, Flash comes into its own: because we have the full power of the Flash programming language, which can easily talk to many other web-languages, it is extremely well-suited to making online 3D applications. A prime example of such an application is Norbert the sheep, which can be seen on the website.
It is important to us that the user's online experience is not interrupted by annoying pop-ups and requests to download special 3D viewers or software, which is why we currently develop all of our Web 3D work in Java and Flash, as they are already installed on around 98% of internet-enabled computers.