Re: PHIL: Meeting People in VRML space
Thu, 16 Jun 1994 11:54:59 -0700

Justin writes:
> True, but I think it's a misuse of the technology. Http is fast, but
> it's not *really* designed for real-time, particularly the level of
> real-time that would be desired for this application. (Ultimately,
> we're talking about teleconferencing, needing *huge* bandwidth and
> very fast response.)

Well, video isnt actually needed for interactivity. The issue is in
positional updates et al, and whether animation over a live connection
eats up too much bandwidth (more than say current MUDs with large
amounts of text being transmitted, although people have argued about
that being too much as well.) If the client/browser handles all of the
rendering/animation and is fast enough, then all that needs be sent is
the update info and behavioral info, which as far less than realtime

Tony Parisi writes:

> I reiterate, the first version of VRML should stay *far* clear of
> specifying any behavior at all, other than attaching a URL to an
> object. Otherwise we won't be building worlds for the Web until
> 1997.

Specifying intention and behavior are different things :) By your
response I'll assume your for the latter of my alternatives,
non-interactive. I think the intent is key in the design, as an
interactive environment would require different things than a
non-interactive one. (real-time rendering, object animation, the
proper structure so as to make this possible with as little bandwidth
as necessary). I'm new to this list, which is why I asked the
question. Either alternative is viable, but i think they are distinct.

Justin again:

> No, I think the best thing to do is accept that VRML browsers will
> serve multiple purposes, and let other tools fill this need. You
> could certainly combine VRML with a multi-media MUD, for instance.
> The browser (which would need to support both) would log into the
> MUD, and keep it informed about which VRML "room" you are in. If
> other users of the MUD were in the same room, it would set up a
> video link so that you would see the other users there -- each user
> would appear in the room at the location of their avatar.

This to some degree serves to illustrate my point. If we're dealing
with a non-interactive situation, what is described here becomes, as
Justin says earlier, a major bandwidth hog. If the design is
interactive, well the hybrid really isnt needed, the mud is just in
how you define object interaction.