WebGL Stories January 28, 2014

Google’s Build With Chrome is a Minecraft-like virtual LEGO builder in the browser


Google announced today that it’s opening a new Build With Chrome website to the public that originally started as a Chrome Experiment. In collaboration with LEGO, Build With Chrome uses WebGL 3D graphics technology to let users build any creation they can think of using virtual LEGO in an extremely slick web-based interface. The site also features the ability to explore creations by others and share your own through Google+ as well as “Build Academy” that features charcaters from the upcoming The LEGO Movie film.

The Build With Chrome site is already featuring a number of creations from the community and is now open for all to play with. 

WebGL Stories October 17, 2011

A few members of the Google Maps team answered some pretty interesting questions on Reddit about the platform, from the community. Business Insider posted some of the highlights from the thread:

  1. Building shadows within Maps are astronomically correct with the time of day and sun. Google did however scale the shadows.
  2. Antartica has a street view in Google Maps.
  3. Google collects 3D views with three laser cameras on their street cars.
  4. The team is excited about/considering making a 3D game using Maps data.
  5. Google Maps has a street view partner program for anyone to add street view photos taken with their own camera.
  6. For colorblind Maps users, Google is figuring out how to accommodate users with the red and green indicators for Traffic.
  7. Google favors higher quality images that are older over blurry ones that are newer.

WebGL Stories October 13, 2011


What do you get by marrying Google Maps to WebGL, a software library that extends the capability of the JavaScript programming language to allow it to generate interactive 3D graphics within any compatible web browser such as Google’s Chrome 14 or Firefox Beta? Pure awesomeness, that’s what. They are calling to Google MapsGL and it enables “far richer visuals and animations”, the search company wrote in a blog post this morning:

WebGL is a new technology that brings hardware-accelerated 3D graphics to the browser without additional installed software. With WebGL your maps experience is much better with 3D buildings, smoother transitions between imagery and the ability to instantly “swoop” into Street View without a plugin.

Just visit maps.google.com and click “Try it now” to take hardware-accelerated Maps for a spin. We wrote in the past about WebGL-based Chrome experiments worth checking out, including a remarkable water simulation and interactive music video.

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WebGL Stories August 15, 2011

We here at 9to5Google are no strangers to Chrome Experiments, sweet little snippets of code that highlight the many advances Google’s been adding to its browser. Take, for example, a tech demo where you write your message and have the band in a music video dance it out. Today, Conceivably Tech points us to another interesting showcase that highlights the efficiency of Google’s WebGL support in Chrome.

WebGL is for the web what OpenGL stands for on your desktop, a standardized way for web developers to tap the power of your graphics card directly, by embedding an OpenGL code right inside web pages. The WebGL Water demo runs smoothly full screen on my 1.6GHz Core i5 MacBook Air and the water ripple effect, particles and lighting effects have to be experienced first hand in order to be fully appreciated.

The code runs best in Chrome due to the use of the OES-texture-float extension, which is currently only available for Chrome. If this is a sign of things to come, soon we will be able to run complex visualizations and shiny 3D games right inside our browser.

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WebGL Stories May 16, 2011


Google has been at the forefront of the HTML5 revolution which has been unfolding on the web. Look no further than the Chrome Experiments page which contains dozens of advanced HTML5 examples that will give you a pause. I blogged about some of the must-see examples which knocked my socks off. Nothing could prepare me for the latest demo. This stuff has just considerably raised the bar of what’s possible on the web.

The combination of HTML5/WebGL code and a GPU-enhanced browser with hardware-accelerated graphics like Google Chrome is what makes possible “Rome: 3 Dreams of Black”, a collaborative music video from Jack White, Norah Jones, Daniele Luppi and Danger Mouse. It’s the best WebGL showcase I’ve seen so far. Check it out in its entirety below the fold.

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