Re: Open Inventor *as* VRML

Linas Vepstas (
Fri, 9 Sep 1994 18:41:58 -0500

> From: "Gavin Bell" <>
> Date: Fri, 9 Sep 1994 14:59:01 -0700
> To:
> Subject: Re: Open Inventor *as* VRML
> [...]
> criticism. The bottom line is that lots of people are using Inventor
> for lots of interesting things; it has proven itself in the real world.

I agree.

> > I beleive that similar remarks apply regarding extensions &
> > enhancements. I've even gotten Gavin Bell to admit that its
> > hard to add a new primitive to the system (I apologize that
> > I have to quote you, Gavin).
> I'll try to restrain my response....
> We designed Inventor to be extensible. Extending is inherently more
> difficult than just using the existing objects that somebody else has
> already designed, implemented, debugged, redesigned, reimplemented, ...
> Inventor is much, much, much easier to extend than Motif. Infinitely
> easier for a user to extend than GL. I'm sensitive about this because
> we tried really hard to make it extensible; implementing things so they
> were extensible made our jobs at least twice as hard. Of course we
> didn't do a perfect job-- but see the Inventor Toolmaker for detailed
> instructions on how to add new nodes, actions, manipulators, devices,
> events, viewers,....

I will agree that it is indeed easier than Motif or GL.
Although I am tempted to say "but it could have been easier",
I will accept that its my responsibility to either show an
easier way, or to tread more gently, and show more respect.
Inventor has done a fine job on many things, although there are
many things I would have done differently.