Len, I don’t recall dissing standards for my advantage. I have been very consistent going back many years in terms of my opinions on VRML in particular (I can’t think what else you might be referring to).
As far as avatar portability, while I agree that there are some applications where it is useful, the basic premise of defining standards for all virtual worlds that only actually apply to a few feels backwards to me.
IMHO, what customers need is easy to create content. That means using the formats customers already use. They need easy access to the content. That means not creating walled gardens and closed systems.
Ok. I agree. But let's first get some earlier quotes and come back to the topics of closed gardens and determine if your experience gives you any credibility on that topic. You were a Sony guy responsible for building closed gardens, so you know how to do that. Do you know how not to do that?
What’s really entertaining is that the two comments on the article so far are arguing about VRML. One poster says, in effect, that there needed to be more people with practical experience doing 3d worlds at the summit, because otherwise, the merits of VRML would have been clear.
I’ll be blunt: there are next to no important things being done in terms of online virtual worlds using VRML, and I don’t know any significant players in the field who use VRML. The people with practical experience avoid it like the plague. Give up already on VRML!"
“VRML wasn’t so useful for VR. It was too heavy. Online 3D spaces pull much more heavily from games. In the end, the commercial formats ended up being the good ones.” — Raph Koster
Let's take those two.
VRML97 became X3D. An open IP-unencumbered format. What have you got to offer? Nothing yet. You seem to be building an editor. Grand. We need those but I certainly agree, we don't need more closed world systems.
We have them in spades.
Now the question is not marketing here. The question is what should be in the open standards and how can you contribute to that without exposing your customers to almost certain indemnity risks or to a lower but probable risk that the content they build is obsolete within a year of fielding it?
The problem in your thinking, Raph, is you believe that games are the bedrock of online worlds. Games are a genre just as mystery novels are a genre. Once read, they are thrown away or donated back to the local library. Serious 3D content can use aspects of the 3D gaming genre, but the disposability of it is not the same and you tend to think in terms of throwaways.
There is a market for those too, but not as a bedrock for long lifecycle content. For that, the only solution proven to work is open languages. So far, we have X3D and Collada, the first an ISO standard and the second to be submitted for one. You can use Collada but not for scripted behavior and behavior is the other pole as described by Tony Parisi (rendering fidelity and behavioral fidelity) required of a standard.
That's the challenge, Raph. That's The Deal.