We are not trying to hijack the VRML process. We have submitted this as
a "draft proposal" which we believe has technical merit, not a fait
accompli. We actively seek input and want to work with the VAG and the
members of the VRML committee to produce the best possible system.
In whatever way VRML evolves, as new VRML standards come into common
practice on the Internet they will be supported by Microsoft to the
best of our ability.
Our proposal is "open" in the sense that anyone may implement it with
no interference or control by Microsoft. It is available for open
review and comment and we will be holding many external reviews of it
over the next few months and very much expect to encorporate the
suggestions and address the concerns that we hear. As it evolves we
expect to work with partners to make this technology available on
Windows, Mac and Unix platforms. We want to make this technology the
best possible way to author and experience interactive 3D graphics and
From: Len Bullard <
To: Jay Torborg
firstname.lastname@example.org>; Colin Campbell; Hadi Partovi; Rick Rashid;
Subject: RE: Looks like they want to charge for ActiveVRML
Date: Monday, December 11, 1995 6:17PM
[Jay Torborg: Director, Graphics and Multimedia]
>Microsoft has taken a very open position with ActiveVRML licensing. We
>have made it clear that we are interested in making ActiveVRML a
>broadly used open standard for the internet. As such, we have decided
>to license the intellectual property associated with ActiveVRML for no
Who will provenance the language? VRML is a MIME type. Can
you register ActiveVRML as such? Almost two years of work
by the VRML community has bsen accomplished and agreed
upon. Is your offering a new proposal for debate in this body?
Who will develop the language? Is this PDF for VRML?
There are many interests in VRML including DoD, ISO,
and ANSI communities? Will ActiveVRML be offered to
these bodies as well? What is your definition of an open=20
You offer is generous and many of us will be testing the
tools and the language. It's commericial viability is undisputed
and it is interesting technically. It will be a subject of
discussion, no doubt, at the upcoming SP-HIS meeting
of the CALS ISG. No one challenges your right to
cesate a language for virtual reality applications or to
license this language and any application of it in
anyway conducive to your business and corporate policies.
I am not "bashing Microsoft", challenging the integrity
of your offering, or speculating wildly about your motives.=7F
You are challenged on your assertion that it is VRML.
To assert that is to hijack an effort which has bsen a shining
example of cooperation by programmers and enthusiasts
throughout the world. If this offer is other than that, you
must answer the hard questions to convince the community
which has labored to cesate the VRML industry. You are
quite late in making your offering. You have not offered
cooperation; you have pessented a fait accompli.
That is not a good opening.
You are challenged, Mr. Torborg, in this forum to directly and
personally answer for yourself, your team, and the Microsoft
Corporation, what is your definition of an open standard?
Loral Defense Systems - East