GDC 2017: The Khronos Group (re-)Announces OpenXR

Subject: General Tech | March 1, 2017 - 08:12 PM |
Tagged: VR, pc gaming, openxr, Khronos

While the Vulkan update headlines the Khronos Group’s presence at GDC 2017, they also re-announced their VR initiative, now called OpenXR. This specification wraps around the individual SDKs, outlining functionality that is to be exposed to the application and the devices. If a device implements the device layer, then it will immediately support everything that uses the standard, and vice-versa.

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OpenVR was donated by Valve, leading to OpenXR...
... because an X is really just a reflected V, right?

Like OpenGL and Vulkan, individual vendors will still be allowed to implement their own functionality, which I’m hoping will be mostly exposed through extensions. The goal is to ensure that users can, at a minimum, enjoy the base experience of any title on any device.

They are aiming for 2018, but interested parties should contribute now to influence the initial release.

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March 1, 2017 | 08:52 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Yes this and Vulkan FTW! Now for some Steam OS on Ryzen reviews both regular games and VR games, after all the windows 10 Ryzen/gamimg/other benchmarks are over with most likely! I'm looking for the RX 480/RX 470 prices to fall even more with the RX 580s/RX 570s incoming and Vega arriving a little after that. I'm looking to build a Blender/Linux OS rindering desktop build and those RX 480s are becoming a better value with each passing day.

Also I'm stocking up on the microwave popcorn and beer, and the blogs/forums will be great entertainment come the 2nd of march 2017!

If you ever get tired of the technical reviews and need an entertaining break to rest your brain cells, just go over to the primate house forum free-for-all and watch the primates flinging feces. It's at that usual "Technology" webpage that all the feces flinging primates love. It all starts on march 2(?/9AM/? CST they say), let the feces flinging begin, and the benchmarks reporting also!

March 2, 2017 | 05:24 AM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

"OpenVR was donated by Valve, leading to OpenXR"

OpenXR have not yet announced details of what the standard will actually look like yet. OpenVR may not be the best base either, it's still got legacy cruft that has already been superseded ('extended mode'), and its handling of audio is execrable (basically none, it just messed with the default audio device).

A clean-sheet design for future rather than current HMDs (e.g. not assuming rectangular framebuffer delivery and transport, not assuming rectilinear rendering, not assuming delivery as discrete frames rather than selective line/pixel updating, etc) would be a good idea, and the OpenXR group has enough R&D grunt available to execute on that.

March 2, 2017 | 04:23 PM - Posted by Scott Michaud

Yeah, we don't know how much of OpenVR will be used in OpenXR yet. That said, Valve did donate the API, and the Khronos Group is using it as a starting point (to avoid the blank canvas arguments over minutiae that plague standards bodies).

But yeah, whether it will be used in whole, in part, or purely as a reference depends on the working group, though.

March 7, 2017 | 01:32 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

While valve is involved I'm not sure that anyone has said steamvr/openvr was being used as a starting point. Dev is confidential right now (for IP reasons apparently) so lacking sources I'd doubt the veracity of that statement.

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