GDC, San Jose, CA – ATI Technologies Inc. (TSX: ATY, NASDAQ: ATYT) has added full support of the OpenGL® Shading Language to the latest version of its hardware independent shader development tool, RENDERMONKEY™. Designed to bring artists and programmers closer together during the shader development process, RENDERMONKEY 1.5 builds upon the previous version, which was downloaded over 100 000 times, to feature implementation of the OpenGL® Shading Language, workflow improvements and the addition of the RENDERMONKEY SDK.
ATI is committed to supporting industry standards, such as Microsoft’s DirectX® High Level Shading Language (HLSL) and OpenGL® Shading Language because they make it easier for artists and developers to incorporate advanced effects into their work. The shading language standards enable developers to leverage their efforts across a wide variety of platforms and operating systems, while creating increasingly complex visual effects. ATI and 3Dlabs’ collaborative support for the OpenGL® Shading Language in RENDERMONKEY 1.5 and their respective drivers allow developers who work in an OpenGL® environment to create realistic shader effects in real time and then export them to any application, whether it is a computer game, a car design model or broadcast animation.
“ Industry standards accelerate development of visually stunning content,” said Rick Bergman, Senior Vice President of Marketing and General Manager Desktop, ATI Technologies, Inc. “The development of RENDERMONKEY has been a focused effort on ATI’s part to bridge the gap between hardware and software by supporting hardware independent standards like OpenGL® and giving developers the flexibility to create.”
“3Dlabs and ATI have been at the leading edge in their support of the OpenGL® Shading Language through our mutual integration of the industry-leading shading language into RENDERMONKEY,” said Neil Trevett, Senior Vice President of Market Development, 3Dlabs. “By allowing developers to maximize the capabilities of today’s graphics hardware and by providing them the tools to drive innovation within the OpenGL® standard, end users will ultimately reap the benefits of more realistic games and animations, regardless of their hardware.”
New additions to the RENDERMONKEY feature set include the import and export of full-featured standalone packaged effect files, an updated Microsoft FX exporter and support for procedural geometry and textures. Within the workspace itself, workflow improvements have been made to ease integration with developers’ graphics engines and to support additional engine-driven shader parameters using custom names. Drag and drop operations are now possible in RENDERMONKEY, and there is increased visual feedback for models and textures.
The introduction of the RENDERMONKEY SDK will allow developers to customize the RENDERMONKEY environment according to their individualized needs. To facilitate creation of custom components within RENDERMONKEY, the tool provides a wizard for automatically creating new SDK projects. By creating a flexible architecture for developers, programmers and artists to work with, RENDERMONKEY enables seamless integration within the production pipeline.
RENDERMONKEY 1.5 will be available for free download to developers at the end of March, followed by the free public download, available in April from ati.com