What is VRML (vermel)?

While the concept of VRML is not overly complex, it is fairly foreign to users that have spent all of their time using two-dimensional displays. In simple terms, VRML is to HTML as a television is to real life. Whereas with television, the watcher brings data from afar to his location, in real life the same person would have to visit that remote location. The same concept holds true with VRML. When a user 'surfs' the HTML web, he retrieves remote files to display on his local computer. In addition to this, a VRML surfer will have a type of presence at the remote site. That is, another user visiting the same site will be aware of the original user's presence. This is perhaps one of the most exciting features of VRML. Imagine being able to hang out with far-flung friends at a popular site! With advances in rendering and display quality, the implications are mind boggling.

However, the attribute of the language that is most anticipated is its 3-dimensional representation. No more will a user have to look at a flat screen and wonder what the side view or background of some object looks like. VRML will provide for a full rendering of landscapes that can be navigated and explored by the user. In fact, some experts predict that navigating the net could soon resemble scenes from cheesy sci-fi movies that we laughed at years ago. Provided that one had a stereoscopic display and a navigation device, a user could essentially 'fly' through space and see a scene from any angle he desired.

So in summary, what VRML will mean to the average user is:

Currently, a very limited implementation is in place, but designers are waiting for VRML 2.0 to be established. The Request for proposals by the VRML standards organization can be found at: http://vag.vrml.org/rfp.html

A good, frequently updated source for extra readings on VRML is VRML World Magazine.