WebGPU

Source: Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
WebGPU
Year started18 May 2021 (2021-05-18)
First published18 May 2021 (2021-05-18)
Latest versionW3C Working Draft
(As of 2023) ((As of 2023))
OrganizationW3C
Committee
  • GPU for the Web WG
  • GPU for the Web CG
Editors
  • Justin Fan
  • Brandon Jones
  • Dzmitry Malyshau
  • Myles C. Maxfield
  • Kai Ninomiya
Related standards
Domain
Websitewww.w3.org/TR/webgpu/

WebGPU is a JavaScript API provided by a web browser that enables webpage scripts to efficiently utilize a device's graphics processing unit (GPU). This is achieved with the underlying Vulkan, Metal, or Direct3D 12 system APIs. On relevant devices, WebGPU is intended to supersede the older WebGL standard.[1]

Google Chrome enabled initial WebGPU support in April 2023.[1][2] Safari and Firefox have not yet enabled theirs.[2] The W3C standard is thus in the working draft phase.

Technology

WebGPU enables 3D graphics within an HTML canvas. It also has robust support for general-purpose GPU computations.[3]

WebGPU uses its own shading language called WGSL that was designed to be trivially translatable to SPIR-V, until complaints caused redirection into a more traditional design, similar to other shading languages. The syntax is similar to Rust.[4] Tint is a Google-made compiler for WGSL.[5] Naga is a similar project developed for the needs of wgpu-rs.[6]

Implementations

Both Google Chrome and Firefox support WebGPU with SPIR-V, with work ongoing for the WGSL front-end. Firefox and Deno use the Rust wgpu library.[7] Safari follows upstream specifications of both WebGPU and WGSL.[2]

Chrome version 113 enabled initial WebGPU support on Windows devices with Direct3D 12, ChromeOS devices with Vulkan, and macOS.[1] This support for Android was enabled in version 121.[2]

History

On June 8, 2016, Google showed "Explicit web graphics API" presentation to the WebGL working group (during the bi-annual face to face meeting).[8] The presentation explored the basic ideas and principles of building a new API to eventually replace WebGL, aka "WebGL Next".

On January 24, 2017, Khronos hosted an IP-free meeting dedicated to discussion of "WebGL Next" ideas, collided with WebGL working group meeting in Vancouver.[9] Google team presented the NXT prototype implementing a new API that could run in Chromium with OpenGL, or standalone with OpenGL and Metal. NXT borrowed concepts from all of Vulkan, Direct3D 12, and Metal native APIs. Apple and Mozilla representatives also showed their prototypes built on Safari and Servo correspondingly, both of which closely replicated the Metal API.

On February 7, 2017, Apple's WebKit team proposed the creation of the W3C community group to design the API. At the same time they announced a technical proof of concept and proposal under the name "WebGPU", based on concepts in Apple's Metal.[10][11][12] The WebGPU name was later adopted by the community group as a working name for the future standard rather than just Apple's initial proposal.[13] The initial proposal has been renamed to "WebMetal" to avoid further confusion.[14]

The W3C "GPU for the Web" Community Group was launched on February 16, 2017. At this time, all of Apple, Google, and Mozilla had experiments in the area, but only Apple's proposal was officially submitted to the "gpuweb-proposals" repository.[15][16][17] Shortly after, on March 21, 2017, Mozilla submitted a proposal for WebGL Next within Khronos repository, based on the Vulkan design.[18][19]

On June 1, 2018, citing "resolution on most-high level issues" in the cross-browser standardization effort, Google's Chrome team announced intent to implement the future WebGPU standard.[13]

References

  1. ^ a b c "Chrome ships WebGPU". Chrome Developers. Retrieved 2023-04-08.
  2. ^ a b c d "WebGPU Implementation Status". GitHub. Retrieved 14 March 2024.
  3. ^ "WebGPU API". developer.mozilla.org. Retrieved 17 March 2024.
  4. ^ WebGPU Shading Language specification
  5. ^ Tint source code
  6. ^ Naga source code
  7. ^ wgpu, Rust Graphics Mages, 2024-01-03, retrieved 2024-01-03
  8. ^ Wallez, Corentin. "Explicit web graphics API". Retrieved 2019-06-25.
  9. ^ Wallez, Corentin; Ninomiya, Kai. "WebGL Next investigations". Retrieved 2019-06-25.
  10. ^ "Next-generation 3D Graphics on the Web". WebKit. 2017-02-07. Retrieved 2018-08-13.
  11. ^ "Apple seeks to position Metal as part of new 3D graphics standard for web". AppleInsider. Retrieved 2018-08-13.
  12. ^ Claburn, Thomas (2017-02-08). "Web-standards-allergic Apple unveils WebGPU, a web graphics standard". The Register. Retrieved 2017-08-14.
  13. ^ "WebGPU Prototype and Demos". WebKit. 2017-04-05. Retrieved 2019-01-10.
  14. ^ Jackson, Dean (2017-02-16). "Welcome and Getting Started". public-gpu (Mailing list). Retrieved 2018-09-11.
  15. ^ Jackson, Dean. "Add Apple's WebGPU proposal". GitHub. Retrieved 2019-03-08.
  16. ^ Malyshau, Dzmitry. "Prototyping a new 3D API for the Web". Retrieved 2016-12-16.
  17. ^ Malyshau, Dzmitry (2017-03-21). "Defining the Web platform". Retrieved 2018-09-11.
  18. ^ Malyshau, Dzmitry. "Mozilla's contribution: Obsidian API". GitHub. Retrieved 2019-03-08.

External links

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