3 D: What Happened To Apple?

How could you possibly have written "3-D Computing" (Cover Story, Sept. 4) and not mentioned Apple Computer Inc.? Apple recently shipped QuickDraw 3D for its Power Macintosh computers--the only personal-computer company to include 3-D with its computer systems and operating-system software. Applications for it will be available in a few months--not years, as with the Intel-Microsoft platforms. Instead, you list Microsoft Inc. as a "major player" in the area, despite the fact that they have yet to ship a product.

Joe Marini

Principal, Lepton Technologies

San Francisco

As I was reading your article on 3-D computing, I noticed there was no mention of Apple Computer and the Macintosh. Macs have played a big role in 3-D computing. Animation created on them has appeared in places ranging from the Intel Pentium commercials to Enterprise B in Star Trek: Generations. PowerPC chips are roughly 30% faster than Pentium chips of the same clock speed for "floating point" calculations, which are essential to 3-D rendering. And Apple's freely available QuickDraw 3D aims to create a standard for 3-D file formats, as with QuickTime movies. Now, Power Mac users can rotate and view 3-D models in as simple a program as ScrapBook--and then drag-and-drop it into a text editor. Let's see Windows 95 do that!

Vijay Iyer

Baldwin, N.Y.