In another important step forwards for free and open standards, plus the future of Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality, the Khronos Group have open sourced their OpenXR testing suite.
What is OpenXR? It's an open standard for Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR), collectively known as XR. It's picking up wide industry adoption, and hopefully means developers won't have to repeatedly rewrite code as they can support a single standard across platforms—something vitally important for the future of XR. It's gotten to the point where even Valve have decided to go all-in with OpenXR in their SteamVR.
Today, the Khronos Group formally announced the proper Conformance Test Suite has been published under the Apache 2.0 license and it can all now be found on GitHub. What's the importance of it though? In their words:
Conformance tests are critical to any interoperability standard. The Working Group has put tremendous effort into this release of the test suite to ensure OpenXR is a reliable cross-platform API. We will continue to evolve and refine the conformance suite; and, by opening our tests to the public, we are empowering the community to aid in this effort. OpenXR implementers are encouraged to use the open source tests to accelerate their platform development, and consider contributing their own tests to help further reduce cross-vendor variability for the benefit of all.Brent Insko, OpenXR Working Group Chair, Lead XR Architect at Intel
They also launched a OpenXR 1.0 Adopters Program, hoping to pull in more developers to get testing and if they pass they will then be able to officially use the OpenXR trademark on their implementation, and gain patent protection under the Khronos Intellectual Property Framework.
More info in the announcement.
As someone watching from afar, due to the current cost of a VR kit, all these advancements have me thoroughly excited about how VR can progress over the next few years. A proper standard in place can help reduce the burden on developers pushing their games and software across different VR kits and stores.