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Nvidia hosted a Vulkan Developers Day which sounds awesome

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Nvidia hosted a 'Vulkan Developers Day' at their Silicon Valley campus with plenty of 'top graphics developers' attending.

It's all really positive sounding too:
QuoteAttendees were eager to get a head start on porting their applications to Vulkan, the new cross-platform, open-standard graphics and compute application programming interface from the Khronos Group.


The sessions were recorded, and Nvidia will make them available on their developer portal after the full release of Vulkan. I wish they would just put them up on Youtube too, no need for a wall around such a thing.

Opinion stuff below
Forgive me for getting more and more excited about this, but Vulkan is important to Linux gaming and yes I am very happy it's finally coming. It's going to make or break Linux gaming in reality, since OpenGL repeatedly falls behind.

I do worry at times that Vulkan will end up in a similar situation to OpenGL with developers using special Nvidia extensions and performance stuff which Intel and AMD may not have. I hope I am wrong about this, as I would like to see a level playing field, but all the GPU people will be wanting to find a way to get people to use their chips and so I imagine we will see some form of it.

See the full news post on it here. Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
Tags: NVIDIA, Vulkan
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23 comments
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Luke_Nukem 21 Jan, 2016
Bloody hell. Can we stop with the conspiracies now please?
Swiftpaw 21 Jan, 2016
Quoting: LukeNukemBloody hell. Can we stop with the conspiracies now please?

What conspiracy? You mean suggestions that perhaps Vulkan, which is steered to an unknown degree by corporations, may not have your best interests at heart? That's not a conspiracy, that's a possibility, one which we can't begin to know until Vulkan is released for everyone to examine. The idea was fed by NVIDIA having a talk about how to best use Vulkan for NVIDIA hardware when Vulkan is supposed to be vendor-agnostic.

Doesn't take a genius to add those things together to be suspicious, but again, we won't know until it is released.


Last edited by Swiftpaw on 21 January 2016 at 3:47 am UTC
Eike 21 Jan, 2016
Quoting: NyamiouI would be very surprised and disappointed if some game developers still choose DirectX 12 over Vulkan, but we'll see.

They totally will, and they even will use it as a PR subject.
Game X - making use of incredible DirectX 12 feature Y and Z!
etonbears 21 Jan, 2016
@TheBoss

You shouldn't be concerned about the extension mechanisms of OpenGL and Vulkan. Extensions have always been a major strength of OpenGL, allowing new new features to be used as soon as they are available. Features that developers want ( i.e. actually use ) then tend to find their way into the main specification.

In contrast, with D3D new hardware features only appear when Microsoft choose to expose them with a new D3D release. This meant that some Windows gamers paid for hardware features that were never used, because Microsoft would use D3D features as a business tool to play hardware manufacturers against each other.

Any good developer would want decisions about what hardware to use and how to use it left to them, not decided in the business interests of the OS manufacturer.
mirv 21 Jan, 2016
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@etonbears

That is indeed a good thing from extensions, but the concern right now is one vendor forcing their extensions onto people before Vulkan has actually been released.
That's all still speculation of course, but we know that nvidia is already planning their own extensions to "help", one of which has no place being an extension (GLSL directly absorbed by Vulkan isn't a great idea). This is worrying because if nvidia manage to convince developers to use their method, we then have Vulkan code being developed on nvidia blobs only, and later (maybe) tested on other drivers & vendors (when it's too late to realise you're trapped in nvidia-blob-only land).
It's a concern because it's so soon.
As I said before though, all speculation, and this might not be so bad, but it doesn't hurt to be skeptical I think. So long as there are multiple vendors with support on day one, it won't be so bad (hopefully).
rune 21 Jan, 2016
Quoting: Eike
Quoting: NyamiouI would be very surprised and disappointed if some game developers still choose DirectX 12 over Vulkan, but we'll see.

They totally will, and they even will use it as a PR subject.
Game X - making use of incredible DirectX 12 feature Y and Z!

They will not choose Vulkan or DirectX because it's 'better'. Both are low level, so I don't think it's going to be that much of a difference. However, if they intend to port games, then using Vulkan is the only choice that makes sense.

Windows only games will probably still use DirectX 12. It's already out, and the various engines that companies use definitely support it. They make games for consoles, and Xbox One has the DirectX 12 API.

There are engines that will support Vulkan (Frostbite), even though they are not going to develop games for Linux. Seems like they (EA) will make smartphone and tablet games using that backend, there is no need for it otherwise.
rune 21 Jan, 2016
Quoting: TobiSGD
Quoting: runeThis is from the blog:

QuoteIn the morning, NVIDIA engineers gave a series of lectures about the best ways to use Vulkan with NVIDIA hardware.

The developers will probably focus on NVIDIA. If so, it's business as usual. :(
Of course they will give lectures about best ways to use Vulkan with Nvidia hardware. What did you expect, that Nvidia hosts an event to tell people how to program for AMD or Intel? Seriously, I don't get this whole conspiracy stuff, of course Nvidia, which has already told us that there will day 1 support for Vulkan from them, teaches developers how to use Vulkan with their hardware. Concluding from that that Vulkan has already failed is somewhat weird, putting it nicely.

It's the developers that decide what API they will use, and also everything else when it comes to developing. If they for some reason write code that perform better on NVIDIA, that doesn't mean that Vulkan itself has failed.

There is no reason at all to reject Vulkan. OpenGL isn't going to change, and Vulkan is of course the only way forward.

Quoting: TobiSGDAnd, sorry if I have to say that, rejecting Vulkan based on that conclusion is outright moronic and would spell the end for Linux gaming.

When it comes to the future of Linux gaming, the only thing that matters is the number of games available. Lots of indies, and very few AAA games, is not what attract people to our platform.

The problem is that a lot of companies are not interested in porting AAA games due to market share. A new API doesn't really make a difference.

Today AAA games are mostly ported by Feral, Aspyr and VP. Then there's sometimes in-house ports released (like Dying Light, and Deep Silver games). With 1% market share, that will probably not change.

I don't know if it's that easy to make a translation layer for DirectX 12 to Vulkan, so maybe VP will not be able to release Vulkan games.

There are indie developers who did not port games because of OpenGL. They will hopefully start porting games when Vulkan is available.
Swiftpaw 21 Jan, 2016
Quoting: runeIt's the developers that decide what API they will use, and also everything else when it comes to developing. If they for some reason write code that perform better on NVIDIA, that doesn't mean that Vulkan itself has failed.

There is no reason at all to reject Vulkan. OpenGL isn't going to change, and Vulkan is of course the only way forward.

That's exactly what it could mean, how are you getting that logic? If a "standard" favors one vendor over another when it's supposed to be vendor-agnostic, it's either a) that vendor is doing it "right" and other vendors need to adapt to the standard, or b) the standard is a bad one.

Vulkan isn't the only way forward, if it's a bad standard then a new standard could be created. If Vulkan turned out to be a corrupt, vendor-specific POS not worthy of the label of "standard" then another standards group like Freedesktop.org or whatever other group or government or civil body could push a new standard that was fair and didn't play favorites and that did have progress and the world and consumer's best interests at heart.
rune 21 Jan, 2016
Quoting: Swiftpaw
Quoting: runeIt's the developers that decide what API they will use, and also everything else when it comes to developing. If they for some reason write code that perform better on NVIDIA, that doesn't mean that Vulkan itself has failed.

There is no reason at all to reject Vulkan. OpenGL isn't going to change, and Vulkan is of course the only way forward.

That's exactly what it could mean, how are you getting that logic? If a "standard" favors one vendor over another when it's supposed to be vendor-agnostic, it's either a) that vendor is doing it "right" and other vendors need to adapt to the standard, or b) the standard is a bad one.

The Vulkan API itself has to be vendor-agnostic, it doesn't make sense if it isn't. But obviously it's possible to write code that 'works' on a certain architecture (the good way), and then it's possible to write code that fully takes advantage of that architecture (the best way).

Hopefully all or most of the games being released will fully take advantage of all architectures.
barotto 21 Jan, 2016
Quoting: TheBossI do worry at times that Vulkan will end up in a similar situation to OpenGL with developers using special Nvidia extensions and performance stuff which Intel and AMD may not have.

This is how standards evolve, actually. Let's say Nvidia introduces a new NV extension that developers like very much. Said developers begin to use it with great results, developing specific render paths for nvidia's GPUs. Nvidia's customers enjoy the results and the extension usage spreads, leaving AMD and Intel customers in the dust. AMD then adapt its GPUs to take advantage of the functionality and contextually publish a proposal for an ARB extension definition for the new feature, maybe in collaboration with some Nvidia engineer. Later the Kronos Group accept that ARB extension that becomes the new way to leverage the Nvidia invented functionality. Meanwhile developers begin to use the Kronos backed ARB extension, targeting both Nvidia and AMD users (Intel is still deciding what to do...)
Many years later the ARB extension becomes core functionality in a new version of Vulkan.

On the other end, Microsoft decides in complete isolation what you are allowed to use in D3D, which is not a standard.
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