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COLLADA: Sailing the Gulf of 3D Digital Content Creation Hardcover – August 30, 2006

ISBN-13: 000-1568812876 ISBN-10: 1568812876 Edition: 1st

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 250 pages
  • Publisher: A K Peters/CRC Press; 1 edition (August 30, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1568812876
  • ISBN-13: 978-1568812878
  • Product Dimensions: 0.7 x 6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.5 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,621,384 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

" book presents comprehensive and enlightening coverage of COLLADA from a practical perspective. NVIDIA is proud of the continuing collaboration on this project, and we look forward to seeing users fully utilize COLLADA to deploy next-generation 3D rendering content in future graphics applications.""-—Sébastien Dominé, Director of Developer Technology Tools, NVIDIA Corporation, August 2006
compatible, reliable, and predictable communications between content creation applications in a tool chain has long been the dream of developers. At last there is a solution. The creators of COLLADA have come up with a schema, which is supported by Khronos, an independent standards body, that allows the applications to communicate in an open and efficient manner-an industry standard for 3D interchange is finally here."" -—Dr. Jon Peddie, President, Jon Peddie Research, August 2006
is redefining game development and promises, for once, to make it simpler and more fun to create 3D content. This authoritative book-detailed, engaging and written by the fathers of COLLADA-will enable game developers to better understand and benefit from this popular technology, so they can focus on creating bold new games instead of maintaining yet another proprietary file format."" -—Christian Laforte, President, Feeling Software, Inc., August 2006
book provides a first and comprehensive introduction to COLLADA, the digital asset exchange schema, which enables a standardized way for physics to be implemented into a variety of game development environments using a variety of creative tools. It will help the AGEIA mission of expanding the role of artists in the game development process through open physics standards."" -—Emmanuel Marquez Ageia, Worldwide Senior Producer, AGEIA Technologies, Inc., August 2006
""I highly recommend this book. If you are a programmer with a reasonable understanding of 3D graphics programming and/or authoring using 3D scene graphs, you will be able to learn the basics of Collada. If you are an experienced 3D toolmaker, Collada contains everything you need to get up and running to build your game, game engine or content pipeline tool. If you are a manager or decision maker, you get the added comfort of knowing that - finally - you just might be able to write that tool once and not over and over again."" -Tony Parisi, Slashdot.org, December 2006
[The Authors] provide insight into the design of COLLADA so that readers can understand how design decisions were made and how this standard may evolve. The book will be useful to content developers interested in exchanging data between several tools, to application developers planning to use COLLADA, and to tool providers who want to add COLLADA compatibility. -Book News, December 2006
Jon Peddie gives us an interesting perspective on the games industry and the efforts being made to make asset exchange as easy as possible. -—Jon Peddie, Hexus, September 2006
""COLLADA: SAILING THE GULF OF 3D DIGITAL CONTENT CREATION is for any game developer beyond the novice stage: it discusses the pros, cons, applications and future of a bold new technology for creating games, and comes from a joint industry effort focusing on effective 3D interaction in game developments. The Collada initiative surveys the history and especially the applications of the 3D industry tool, offering up a basic guide to the Collada 1.4 specifications and reviewing foundation concepts, tools, and applications and design. It's simply a must for any serious game developer."" -California Bookwatch: The Computer Shelf, California Bookwatch, November 2006
book makes available the results of a joint industry effort, spearheaded by Sony Computer Entertainment, Inc., to create a standard for digital asset exchange that enables Playstation® 3 to bring more realistic content to life and into the home like never before.""
-Ken Kutaragi, President and CEO Sony Computer Entertainment -President and CEO Sony Computer Entertainment, August 2006
welcomes the publication of COLLADA: Sailing the Gulf of 3D Digital Content Creation, where the centerpiece of the digital asset tool chain for the 3D interactive industry is clearly explained and presented for the first time. Softimage is proud to have contributed to COLLADA since the beginning of its development, and to watch it grow into a powerful resource supported by the industry as a whole."" -—Gareth Morgan, Senior product manager for Softimage Co.,a subsidiary of Avid Technology, Inc., August 2006
COLLADA initiative is a demonstration of Sony's leadership and commitment to the games development industry. Autodesk is very supportive of this effort; it helps the games community become more productive as it tackles the requirements and opportunities of new generation consoles."" -—Marc Petit, VP Media & Entertainment, Autodesk, August 2006
book is an excellent first-hand account of the origins of COLLADA straight from the people that made it happen. These pages are much more then just an authoritative technical primer on enabling great content-they are also a glimpse into the passion and vision that bought COLLADA to life. The Khronos Group is honored to provide a good home to COLLADA-an open standard that is truly changing the 3D industry.""
-Neil Trevett, President, Khronos Group -President, Khronos Group, August 2006"

About the Author

Mark Barnes joined Sony Computer Entertainment US R&D in July 2003 as a member of the graphics team where he is leading the effort on COLLADA. Barnes' experience and knowledge in the field of visual simulation includes database tools, distributed processing, and real-time graphics. Remi Arnaud joined Sony Computer Entertainment US R&D in January 2003 as the Graphics Architect for the PLAYSTATION[registered]3 graphics API. Arnaud obtained his Ph.D in Real-Time Image Synthesis while working in the R&D department of Thomson Training & Simulation (Paris, France) designing visual systems for custom hardware and high-end workstations.

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Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Wind World on August 22, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I bought this book hoping to learn more than the spec told me. It didn't do that. It mainly describes the COLLADA schema and has no examples of real usage. There is virtually no full-length example in the entire book, and all the example fragments are contrived rather than real. Most of the figures are schema diagrams taken from XMLSpy. The color plates merely show products, mostly Maya but including those of the authors', and have no linkage to the text or in most cases to COLLADA at all. If the authors wanted to be helpful they could have included links to the COLLADA files for those scenes, assuming the scenes could even be represented in COLLADA. (Nothing was said about that.)

Much of the book describes the collaboration that created the spec rather than the spec itself. Mildly interesting maybe, but useful? There are only 164 pages of primary content. The rest describe product-specific plug-ins and how a content pipeline might be designed around COLLADA. There is some description of the open-source COLLADA DOM. (But using a DOM for huge model files is typically not practical.)

The writing is uneven and more often than not opaque. Here's a typical passage (page 47):

"The <accessor> element describes the common or well-known representation of the outputs of a <source> element. The <accessor> provides the parameter-binding information that forms the data source's output interface or 'plug.' The inputs of the primitive collation elements connect to the sources via these access interfaces and complete the data stream model of geometric information (see figure 3.2)."

All this is trying to say that the accessor element describes how the data is laid out. Figure 3.2 is a table with four rows: count, offset, source (an array pointer) and stride.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By David Wallace Croft on October 10, 2006
Format: Hardcover
I purchased this book at the ACM SIGGRAPH 2006 conference and finished it within a few days of my return. The text is clearly written and the endnotes are interesting. It clarifies many of the ambiguities in the COLLADA specification. This book is a must-have for anyone writing COLLADA import or export code.
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1 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Midwest Book Review on November 6, 2006
Format: Hardcover
COLLADA: SAILING THE GULF OF 3D DIGITAL CONTENT CREATION is for any game developer beyond the novice stage: it discusses the pros, cons, applications and future of a bold new technology for creating games, and comes from a joint industry effort focusing on effective 3D interaction in game developments. The Collada initiative surveys the history and especially the applications of the 3D industry tool, offering up a basic guide to the Collada 1.4 specifications and reviewing foundation concepts, tools, and applications and design. It's simply a 'must' for any serious game developer.

Diane C. Donovan

California Bookwatch
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7 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Scott Johnson on June 13, 2007
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I think this book is indeed quite well written, and gives a lot of information about the COLLADA format. I would recommend it to anyone working with the format, as it shows what can be done, but also how to do it.

On the down side, I think that the authors don't give enough credit to Open Source/Open Standard software concepts. For instance, in Chapter One, they state, "In the entertainment industry, there are three major DCC tools: 3ds Max, Maya, XSI." I think that the oversight of Blender being a viable alternative to any of these makes me question the authors' credibility in terms of software tools. Granted, it's not one of the DCC tools with the largest market share, but it's the tool of choice for many independent game developers, many of whom probably work in coordination with people using several other tools, and have a distinct need for COLLADA as an interchange format.

This is just an example, but nowhere in the book that I can find, do they mention a specific open source product. In addition, the authors seem to be quite critical on the subject of open source software in general, reducing the whole category of tools to a small blurb, and stating that it's unlikely a commercial entity would use open source products, for fear of patent infringement.

While I think the book has a large amount of good information, I can see open source developers becoming a little discouraged with the constant reminder throughout the book of, "here's how to get COLLADA to work with your proprietary stuff, so you can protect your secrets."
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