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Mobile 3D Graphics: with OpenGL ES and M3G (The Morgan Kaufmann Series in Computer Graphics) 1st Edition

3.5 out of 5 stars 6 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0123737274
ISBN-10: 0123737273
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 464 pages
  • Publisher: Morgan Kaufmann; 1 edition (December 3, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0123737273
  • ISBN-13: 978-0123737274
  • Product Dimensions: 7.6 x 1 x 9.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,560,061 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Tolga Capin on July 30, 2008
Format: Hardcover
The Mobile 3D Graphics book is a tutorial-type book that helps to understand Mobile 3D APIs, OpenGL ES and M3G. The book was written for graphics application developers, game developers, Java developers, and students.

The book consists of three parts: anatomy of a graphics engine, OpenGL ES, and M3G, each divided into chapters. In each chapter, one aspect of the mobile 3D graphics is discussed (e.g. in the first part of the book, chapters include: low-level rendering, animation, scene management, and performance/scalability). Each chapter discusses the important issues, and sample code segments are provided.

The best features of the book include: its in-depth coverage of the mobile graphics techniques; how to start developing OpenGL ES and M3G application; performance tips and pitfalls; and how to accelerate your code using fixed-point arithmetic; and how to increase performance of Java code. The Web site that complements the book([...]) contains code samples and demos.

I found the book to be a good introduction to mobile graphics programming, perhaps the best among mobile 3D graphics programming books. The authors are also among the experts of 3D mobile graphics: they helped to start the OpenGL ES and M3G standardization groups, and actively contributed to development of these standards.

On the flip side, as the other reviewers have said, OpenGL ES 2.0 is not included in this book. But, it will be some time until we will see widespread use of OpenGL ES 2.0 enabled mobile devices. Even then, developers will still be able to use OpenGL 1.x on 2.0 hardware, with appropriate 1.x drivers). So, as of this writing, this is not an outdated book!

Also, a complete case study (e.g. a small OpenGL ES or M3G game, complete with user input, rendering optimization, etc.) would be a very useful addition to the book.
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Format: Hardcover
This book is a must-have for anyone planning to develop interactive 3D graphics applications on mobile devices. The authors are known experts in the field and greatly contributed to the OpenGL ES and M3G standards. Overall, I think the book is a very valuable reference for 3D graphics practitioners who want to get a start on implementing applications for mobile devices. At the same time the book is also well-suited as a text-book accompanying a course on mobile graphics.

The book comprises of three parts. Part I explains general 3D graphics concepts with attention to the specifics of mobile devices. It begins with a general introduction to mobile device technology. After a chapter on important mathematical concepts for 3D graphics, the low-level concepts of a 3D graphics engine like OpenGL ES are explained (what are fragment and vertex operations, how does lighting work, what is texturing etc.). The two subsequent chapters explain high-level concepts for animation (e.g key-frame interpolation, skinning) as well as scene management (e.g. scene graphs). Here the focus lies on concepts supported by M3G. The last chapter in part I is an excellent intro to performance and scalability issues on mobile devices. It gives practical hints on how to identify performance bottlenecks, how to write compact code, and how to make your application scale to a range of devices.

Part II of the book addresses the low-level mobile 3D graphics API OpenGL ES. It is not a tutorial-like intro to OpenGL ES which would augment a program step-by-step with new features and talk the reader through it. It is rather an excellent reference which explains how all raster-engine concepts introduced in part I can be practically interfaced (OpenGL ES function names and choice of parameters etc.).
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Format: Hardcover
I purchased this book primarily for OpenGL on mobile devices. I needed something more specific to Apple's iPhone SDK, however I am glad I went with this more generic book instead. OpenGL is a complex standard and has a long history. After reading this book I understand better what are the various forces at play in the evolution of the standard, the various layers of the system and how they play between themselves. A big relief is that you do not have to understand all of the standard and certainly not use it all. The down side is that you need lots of information to be able to zoom into the specific APIs that make sense for your application.

So while this book is not a theoretical book expect to have to invest some days in it before you start to get some value. This is a reflection of the complexity of the subject treated. I recommend this book if you are interested by OpenGL (or the java equivalent) in the mobile space.
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