A-FRAME, a markup language for browser-based VR

aframe-1

I have been fooling around with ThreeJS and virtual reality boilerplates for desktop and mobile browsers using Oculus and Cardboard for a while, but this just takes things to a whole new level.

A-frame is described by its creators as

an open source framework for easily creating WebVR experiences with HTML. It is designed and maintained by MozVR (Mozilla’s virtual reality team research team). A-Frame wraps WebGL in HTML custom elements, enabling web developers to create 3D VR scenes that leverage WebGL’s power, without having to learn its complex low-level API. Because WebGL is ubiquitous in modern browsers on desktop and mobile, A-Frame experiences work across desktop, iPhone (Android support coming soon), and Oculus Rift headsets.

It is not the first time we see something like this —remember VRML and more recently GLAM— but this is the first time I sense a strong design and content oriented vision behind a toolset of this kind. It has been clearly built taking into consideration the full spectrum of creative people that currently fuel the web as well as the mobile space, and this I hope will help it stick around. To see what I mean just launch http://aframe.io/ from the broswer in your iPhone if you have one (sorry androids), browse through the examples, and hit that cardboard icon.

Screen Shot 2015-12-20 at 11.04.51 AM

Finally, I just stole a drawing from an article by @ngokevin where he explains what’s so special about A-frame and the entity-component-system design pattern at its core.

entity-component

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