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Blend4Web adds Interactive Annotations, Instancing and API

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Blend4Web latest updates adds some powerful features, including my favorite: API access to the runtime viewer.

The Blend4Web Team writes:

It has already been a year since the first public release of Blend4Web! So, we are proud to announce the anniversary release of our open platform for developing 3D web applications. In this release you will find: annotations, object instancing, the application for demonstrating APIs and support for color animation in node materials.

Annotations

After receiving numerous requests from our users, we implemented a convenient tool for attaching annotations to 3D objects. The annotation is displayed near the object regardless of the camera position, and even follows it througout the animation.

planetarium2

Annotations can be created entirely in Blender. All you need is to place an Empty object in the required position and enable the Anchor property on it. The text for the annotations can be assigned in the Title field on the Tags panel.

annotation

Clicking on an annotation will enlarge the window, which can display additional information with text from the Description field.

Also, we have implemented a way to detect cases when an opaque 3D object overlaps an anchor (Detect Visibility option). In these cases, the annotation becomes almost transparent and inactive.

Instancing

Blend4Web has introduced a new possibility for creating copies of objects at runtime. For this purpose, we developed corresponding APIs which can be used to make simple (with a shared mesh) or deep copies (the mesh is copied too). Also, a method for removing the copied objects was added.

instancing

API Demo App

Various API usecases were collected in a single demo app which can be found in the SDK. It currently includes: the use of canvas and video textures, procedural camera animation, procedural annotations, modifying geometry at runtime, gyroscope, instancing and modifying materials. The source code of these examples is displayed in a separate window to simplify searching and copying.

api_demo_app

Color Animation in Node Materials

Animation of Value nodes in node materials improved graphic effects to a new level. With this release, it becomes possible to animate color in RGB nodes as well.

color_anim

Blend4Web profile

We started implementing a specific Blend4Web profile for Blender. When switching to this profile, the Blender interface changes so that it displays only those settings that are relevant to Blend4Web. At the moment, this functionality is still under experimental status and can be activated in the add-on settings.

B4W_profile

In order to ensure that users can work with node materials in this profile, we prepared two patches for Blender, the second of which looks most promising. We invite our users to show support in favor of this functionality to be accepted by Blender developers.

The patch: https://developer.blender.org/D1188

This Blend4Web version is compatible with the newest Blender 2.74.

 

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