from geometry to pixels


OpenGL Programmable Blending – APPLE_shader_framebuffer_fetch

Large parts of the rendering pipeline are user programmable through shaders nowadays. One of the remaining fixed-functions is fragment blending: The new fragments (shaded by the fragment shader) don’t neccessarily have to overwrite the corresponding framebuffer entry, we can set different blending operations. The set of possible operations however is fixed. There have been requests […]


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MacOS X OpenGL driver status

MacOS X 10.8 Mountain Lion was released earlier today and with it the hope for updated OpenGL. Currently the OpenGL Capability Table isn’t updated for 10.8 (or even 10.7.4) yet but there haven’t been much improvements anyway: Current OpenGL support is still 3.2. GL_ARB_instanced_arrays, GL_ARB_occlusion_query2 and GL_ARB_timer_query are still the only supported extensions from OpenGL […]


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MacOS X OpenGL driver bugs

Once in a while I run across a bug in Apples OpenGL implementation. Providing an up-to-date and performant OpenGL implementation is not an easy task, and you have to wonder why Apple tries to do this on there own and not letting Intel, NVidia and AMD provide the drivers as they do on Windows and […]


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Mac OpenGL capabilities

The latest MacBook Pro just got a GeForce 650M – a Kepler based GPU. This chip is not only capable of delivering OpenGL 4.2 but also shiny new features like bindless textures: one way of supporting Virtual Texturing in hardware and maybe something we will see in some form in OpenGL 5.0. This makes it […]


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Windowless OpenGL on MacOS X

As it turns out, windowless OpenGL applications are not only possible on Linux, but also on MacOS X – and it’s quite simple to set up. But first a little bit of background about OpenGL on Apple: At the lowest layer, OpenGL is handled by CGL (Core OpenGL), based on top of that are AGL […]


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[NSOpenGLContext flushBuffer] might not do what you think

OpenGL on MacOS X has some problems with bugs and missing support of newer features. Sadly, even the Cocoa part of the 3D API (which gets defined by Apple, not the ARB) has some quirks. [NSOpenGLContext flushBuffer] is used to swap the backbuffer to the front in double buffered applications, in single buffered apps it […]


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The sad state of OpenGL on MacOS X

If you want to do hardware-accelerated 3D graphics on Macs, your only option is OpenGL, which is fine except for a few Mac-specific problems: Outdated OpenGL support: Did MacOS X ever have up-to-date OpenGL support? With MacOS X 10.7 Lion OpenGL 3.2 support was added to Apples operating system. Till then only OpenGL 2.1 was […]


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