[osg-users] Announcing VR-Vantage - an OSG-based 3D Toolkit

Len Granowetter lengrano at mak.com
Tue Mar 31 19:24:33 PDT 2009

Fellow members of the OpenSceneGraph community,

VT MAK (aka MAK Technologies) is proud to announce the launch today of 
VR-Vantage (http:\\www.VR-Vantage.com) - a new 3D application 
development environment based on OpenSceneGraph!

MAK has been involved in visual simulation for over 16 years now, and 
over the years, we've talked to a lot of people who have expressed 
frustration about the state of the 3D visualization market: Commercial 
image generators (IGs) always have great features out of the box, but 
they are usually closed systems - often tied to a vendor’s 
content-generation toolchain, and often without a toolkit API for user 
customization or extension.  On the other end of the spectrum are scene 
graph toolkits like OSG - which offer unlimited flexibility, but require 
lots of application development and content integration work just to get 
to the point where you can really start adding your project-specific 
capabilities.  What's really been missing is a product that provides 
full-featured out-of-the-box applications, *and* the ability to extend, 
customize or embed any of that application-level functionality into 
custom applications.  Missing...until now!

What we are offering with VR-Vantage is the ability to turbo-charge your 
OSG-based development project.  A typical OSG user (particularly in the 
visual simulation domain) spends lots of money incorporating content, 
and lots of software development time implementing or integrating 
application-level functionality, such as:
• Game-like or virtual-globe-like navigation interfaces
• Human character animation
• Real-time trees and vegetation
• Graphical User Interface
• A sky/lighting/environment model
• An "entity management" layer
• Full-featured DIS/HLA support
• Top-quality 3D vehicle and cultural feature models
• Run-time configuration system
• Informational overlays about simulated objects
• Fully-integrated Distributed Rendering for multi-channel displays
• Streaming terrain elevation and imagery from web-mapping services
• Heads-up-displays or interactive cockpit displays

With VR-Vantage, we've built all of this content and capability into an 
inexpensive off-the-shelf product.  We've licensed all the necessary 
3rd-party technology, and spent the past two years integrating and 
developing a powerful application-level OSG-based toolkit - so that you 
don't have to do it yourself!  The VR-Vantage applications, which 
include the MAK Stealth viewer, and a new desktop IG called Vantage IG, 
already incorporate all of the following as standard features: IDV's 
SpeedTree vegetation, BDI's DI-Guy human characters, DiSTI's GL Studio 
cockpit displays, SunDog Software's SilverLining clouds and environment, 
Pelican Mapping's osgEarth streaming elevation and imagery, a 
customizable Qt-based GUI, native HLA/DIS support based on MAK's own 
VR-Link toolkit, multi-channel distributed rendering, and a library of 
high-quality 3D models from companies like Simthetiq and RealDB. And no 
3rd-party run-time licenses are required to use any of these capabilities!

But you still retain the same level of extensibility you’d have with 
OpenSceneGraph.  VR-Vantage offers a higher-level API above the scene 
graph, to provide as much power as possible.  But you always have direct 
access to the OSG layer as well, so that you can easily incorporate 
existing OSG nodekits and file loaders, and can continue working with 
the API you're comfortable with.  Plus, you’ll have MAK to support you, 
so you can stay focused on your project-specific tasks.

Start with the VR-Vantage Toolkit, and you can immediately begin working 
on your application-specific functionality, giving you a leg up on your 
competition, and allowing you to execute your projects with much lower risk.

VR-Vantage was previewed at I/ITSEC 2008, and version 1.0 shipped today, 
March 31, 2009.  For more information about VR-Vantage, please see 
http:\\www.VR-Vantage.com, or visit http:\\www.mak.com.

VT MAK, (formerly known as MAK Technologies), a company of VT Systems, 
develops software to link, simulate and visualize the virtual world.  We 
are best known for our DIS/HLA networking toolkits (VR-Link and the MAK 
RTI), for our computer-generated-forces simulation toolkit (VR-Forces), 
and for our 3D visualization product (MAK Stealth).

Len Granowetter
work: (617) 876-8085 Ext. 121
cell: (617) 256-4368
email: lengrano at mak.com

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