Vol.34 No.2 May 2000

Web3D Innovations Featured

Karen Sullivan
Computer Graphics Cover Editor

May Columns
From the Editor Gaming & Graphics

About the Cover
Previous About the Cover

The copyright of articles and images printed remains with the author unless otherwise indicated.

Timothy Childs, Web3D Producer and Chaos Wrangler, and Co-Organizer Don Brutzman have done a wonderful job orchestrating a great review of the SIGGRAPH 99 Web3D RoundUP for this issue while busily organizing the Web3D RoundUP for SIGGRAPH 2000!

The goal of the Web3D RoundUP is to demonstrate the future of Web3D innovations and environments to incredibly discriminating audiences, such as the constituency found at SIGGRAPH 2000. Interested in VRML, X3D, Java3D, MPEG-4? This is the place to be:

Our covers feature six of the more than three dozen cutting-edge applications that created sizzle at last year’s RoundUP.

Front Cover


Blaxxun interactive specializes in virtual worlds and is the producer of blaxxun Instant Community™ - Just Add People - one of the first virtual community applications.

Virtual communities are multi-user on-line environments where people gather to communicate and share information just as easily as they would in the physical world.

Our front cover features such a community for kids. Greenlight Media AG, using blaxxun technology, has created SimsalaGrimm, a parallel world for an international TV series of Grimm’s Fairy Tales. This beautiful castle is the entrance to a virtual 3D fantasy land where kids can meet other kids. Attractions of the site include access to all of the fairy tales, interaction with the characters from the TV series, magic forests and windmills. The children can select animated avatars to represent themselves. The goal of the site is to offer interactivity, variety, investigation — and fun!

For more on this community, see and

Back Cover

The back cover illustrates applications (top to bottom, left to right) in education, gaming, fashion, greeting cards, virtual communities and 3D creation software.

MBARI (Upper Left)

MBARI is a ROV data visualization, voted best educational demo at the Web3D VRML 2000. This R&D project measures and observes oceanograhic phenomena, delivering data visualization over the web in a common, compelling, efficient and easy-to-use system that can be viewed within a web browser. Initial team members included Mike McCann, VRML coding, data conversion; Gerry Hatcher, image and terrain registrations, GIS expertise; Norman Maher, mapping and visualization consultant and intern Jenny Washburn. Current project participants also include Dr. Bruce Robison, Dr. Jim Barry, Prof. Don Brutzman, Craig Dawe, Rich Schramm and Jenny Paduan.

For more information, see

The Mystery House (Upper Right)

Lunatic Interactive observes, “One 3D scene tells more than a thousand pages.” This gaming example, Mystery House, gives users a glimpse of the future of Web3D interactive entertainment. Using a T-on-line website, players open doors, enter spaces and find objects to gain access to information and combine hidden parts of the house. Lunatic Interactive was founded three years ago in Berlin, Germany. Their goal is to develop and create the finest VRML and 3D environments by enabling content providers to populate their websites with an “interested and communicating audience.” Much of their work has been in conjunction with blaxxun Interactive.

For more information, visit

Macy’s Passport Event (Middle Left)

Macy’s Passport Event allows users to create their own fashion show. Pick your favorite city, choose the lighting, change the camera angle, choose the music - all with a customized model wearing the latest fashions. Change the walk, the pose, the hair for a one-of-a-kind user customized experience. This is the first commercial site created using Shout Interactive’s Shout 3D technology. This technology allows the user to experience interactive 3D graphics on any Java-enabled platform without the need for special plug-ins or extra viewing tools.

For more information, visit or

MagicBlossom (Middle Right)

MagicBlossom is a virtual greeting card company originating in New Paltz, NY. Users have the ability to create a 3D virtual bloom of poetry for someone special. And the best thing is, MagicBlossom is FREE.

For more information, see

Avatars99 Conference Center (Bottom Left)

DigitalSpace was the first company established to design, build and host graphical shared spaces on the Internet. These spaces are gaining importance because increasingly people are entering virtual worlds to do serious work. These communities teach, collaborate, help businesses serve customers, allow politicians to reach their constituencies, allow scientists to share information and allow people to build networks of value. DigitalSpace believes communities can be more effective inside visual environments of virtual worlds. This image is an example of a virtual world in use as a conference center.

For more information, see .

Web3D RoundUp at SIGGRAPH 99 (Bottom Right)

This image gives just a taste of the Web3D RoundUp itself. Don’t miss it this year at SIGGRAPH 2000.

For more information, see

Karen Sullivan is a faculty member at Ringling School of Art and Design in the Department of Computer Animation and Foundation Studies. Her major focus of research is in concept, narrative and literacy for media and animation. Her video installations and single channel pieces have been shown nationwide. Karen received her M.F.A. from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, and her B.F.A. from Indiana University, Bloomington.

Karen Sullivan
Ringling School of Art and Design
2700 North Tamiami Trail
Sarasota, FL 34234

Tel: +1-941-351-5100