[Public WebGL] GL_OES_element_index_uint

Vladimir Vukicevic [email protected]
Thu Feb 10 16:08:45 PST 2011

Hi Jonathan,

----- Original Message -----
> Hi Ken,
> Thanks for the quick reply. I guess I'm a touch confused. Doesn't the
> whole extension concept imply that not everyone needs to implement
> them? Case and point you just mentioned that this extension is
> supported by Google but not Apple on the iPhone and iPad platforms for
> OpenGL ES 2.0.

In general, that's what an extension means, especially in the non-web world.  But given that WebGL is new, we're trying to avoid fragmentation as much as possible -- and one of the ways is only officially specifying extensions that are "widely available" and provide significant benefit.  For example, OES_texture_float is generally widely available, and is an official extension.  We're trying to (for now) protect against the case where an author writes functionality using an extension and doesn't bother to write the fallback code, and we end up with content that can only run on a fraction of WebGL-capable devices -- which would be harmful to the success of WebGL in the long term, I think.

    - Vlad

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Kenneth Russell [mailto:[email protected]]
> Sent: Thursday, February 10, 2011 6:36 PM
> To: Jonathan Feldstein
> Cc: [email protected]
> Subject: Re: [Public WebGL] GL_OES_element_index_uint
> On Thu, Feb 10, 2011 at 2:52 PM, Jonathan Feldstein
> <[email protected]> wrote:
> > After playing around with WebGL one thing that I noticed was that
> > the
> > specification seems to be missing the ability to create 32-bit index
> > buffers. OpenGL ES 2.0 has the ability to enable this with the:
> > GL_OES_element_index_uint extension.
> >
> > 65536 possible index values doesn't really seem like enough values
> > for
> > today's games. People will be forced to split their index values
> > into
> > multiple arrays of data. Would it be possible to add this extension,
> > or is
> > there a good reason that it is currently absent?
> I don't think the WebGL working group has discussed this extension.
> However, after doing some searching, it looks like while Android
> hardware has widespread support for it, it isn't supported on any
> current iOS hardware, iPhone or iPad. We want WebGL content to run
> identically across desktop and mobile hardware, so in my opinion the
> lack of support on iOS makes adding it to the WebGL extension registry
> a non-starter.
> -Ken
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