Linked by Kroc Camen on Sat 26th Jun 2010 10:48 UTC
Internet Explorer Microsoft have released IE9 Platform Preview 3, an application that gives developers access to the IE9 rendering engine (it's not a full browser). In this update they have added hardware accelerated HTML5 Video, Canvas, Fonts (using WOFF) and big improvements in JavaScript with ES5, DOM Traversal, L2 and L3 events and 83/100 Acid3 score. It sits between Firefox and Chrome 6 on JavaScript speed, but outperforms every browser in real tests.
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RE[3]: Real tests
by Kroc on Sat 26th Jun 2010 13:28 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Real tests"
Kroc
Member since:
2005-11-10

It’s not about _need_, it’s about availability. If a GPU is there and it’s “only 14x faster” than the CPU, then why not use it, for everything; even text—which is a whole lot more taxing than most give it credit.

Reply Parent Score: 9

v RE[4]: Real tests
by lemur2 on Sat 26th Jun 2010 13:37 in reply to "RE[3]: Real tests"
RE[5]: Real tests
by sukru on Sat 26th Jun 2010 14:12 in reply to "RE[4]: Real tests"
sukru Member since:
2006-11-19

Yes, that's called Aero and Windows Presentation Framework.

Seriously, even after all these anti-trust sanctions, people still think MS is using hidden APIs for non-core OS functionality. The APIs are openly documented, they - legally - cannot use hidden ones.

Reply Parent Score: 10

RE[5]: Real tests
by dpJudas on Sat 26th Jun 2010 14:26 in reply to "RE[4]: Real tests"
dpJudas Member since:
2009-12-10

What a silly conspiracy theory.

The hyped hardware acceleration in IE9 is nothing more than IE changing from using the GDI scanline renderer to the Direct2D renderer they added in Windows 7. This is a public API and so any competitor can also use this for their rendering if they so desire.

Just like any other modern windowing system, Windows Vista and Windows 7 stores each window in a texture on the GPU, regardless of what technology you use for the rendering. The windowing system then offers a series of different technologies to fill that texture with contents. In Windows those are GDI, DirectDraw, Direct3D, Direct2D and OpenGL.

What we are talking about here is simply a new interface that is more compatible with the way a modern GPU works. The original GDI graphics API makes some assumptions about the graphics card that isn't true anymore and therefore virtually everything in GDI has been running in software. Microsoft gave up on accelerating it and instead wrote Direct2D and now are bragging how fast IE gets if they use that instead.

If you wonder what is wrong with GDI, then its small subtle things like being able to render directly to the screen (which doesn't make sense when your display window manager does that) and the entire way bitmaps were designed.

Reply Parent Score: 8

RE[5]: Real tests
by Nelson on Sat 26th Jun 2010 16:46 in reply to "RE[4]: Real tests"
Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29


Why not simply use the GPU to accelerate the whole desktop, even text?


Windows comes dangerously close. At least on Windows7 GDI is more hardware accelerated than before, but not all the way. There is a real tradeoff between HW accelerating such an old API, and maintaining a decent memory footprint.


This way, all applications will equally benefit from accelerated performance, not just the browser ...

Oh, wait a minute, perhaps I see. Even your commercial competitor's application would benefit if you used the GPU to accelerate the whole desktop.


However, just the API has landed to do this on Windows Vista and Windows 7. It's called Direct2D.

Reply Parent Score: 4

v RE[5]: Real tests
by dylansmrjones on Sun 27th Jun 2010 02:10 in reply to "RE[4]: Real tests"
RE[4]: Real tests
by Neolander on Sat 26th Jun 2010 14:44 in reply to "RE[3]: Real tests"
Neolander Member since:
2010-03-08

Okay. It's just that when I hear about browser hardware acceleration, I see in the future Canvas-powered websites which use the GPU for stupid things, just like Flash currently does. I see laptop battery life continue to go down. I see a Vista effect where developers require ultra high power from the user's machine because their own machine is powerful. I see users which don't have fast 3D acceleration being penalized because they use open-source drivers or AMD's crappy proprietary drivers, or just because their old laptop includes a crappy intel GMA chipset.

If you make the feature available, you can safely assume that people will use it. Hardware acceleration in browsers is just like composited desktops : it's fine as long as it's optional and people can survive without it. Sadly, the web is not a desktop, where disabling compositing will just make windows look ugly. If developers require hardware acceleration and it's not available, the site won't work. That's the kind of things which I'm fearing.

Edited 2010-06-26 14:46 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[5]: Real tests
by WorknMan on Sat 26th Jun 2010 15:10 in reply to "RE[4]: Real tests"
WorknMan Member since:
2005-11-13

Okay. It's just that when I hear about browser hardware acceleration, I see in the future Canvas-powered websites which use the GPU for stupid things, just like Flash currently does.


If we're lucky, somebody will create a 'Canvasblock' extension, so we can only turn it on only when it's needed, which, if it's like flash, will be about 2% of the instances where it's actually used.

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE[5]: Real tests
by reconciliation on Mon 28th Jun 2010 12:31 in reply to "RE[4]: Real tests"
reconciliation Member since:
2009-07-02

-

Edited 2010-06-28 12:36 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[4]: Real tests
by zdzichu on Sat 26th Jun 2010 15:16 in reply to "RE[3]: Real tests"
zdzichu Member since:
2006-11-07

Using GPU accel isn't straight performance win: http://blogs.gnome.org/otte/2010/06/26/fun-with-benchmarks/

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[5]: Real tests
by kaiwai on Sun 27th Jun 2010 10:22 in reply to "RE[4]: Real tests"
kaiwai Member since:
2005-07-06

Using GPU accel isn't straight performance win: http://blogs.gnome.org/otte/2010/06/26/fun-with-benchmarks/


Maybe that might explain why Microsoft noted that there are some things that 2D hardware acceleration improves in some areas and makes no difference in others. I think they did a benchmark after re-enabling hardware acceleration of GDI and it wasn't an across the board speed increase.

I guess as the blog you pointed out notes, hardware acceleration isn't the panacea to cure all of life's problems which probably explains why Apple was so reluctant to provide a interface for hardware accelerated decoding - I've run Flash 10.1 Gala and the hardware offloading of decoding has had negligible impact on over all CPU utilisation.

Reply Parent Score: 2