New in OS X 10.9: OpenGL 4.1, OpenCL 1.2
Apple has received a lot of deserved criticism for ignoring the needs of its pro user base — a core customer constituency since the ’80s. At WWDC 2013, the company has attempted to right many of those wrongs by not only introducing new Mac Pros, but also core OS X 10.9 technologies important to the pro user community.
In many ways, OS X remains little changed since 2009, when Apple adopted OpenCL 1.0 and OpenGL 3.2, core cross-platform technologies that allow the company and third-party developers to create high-end applications and games for the Mac.
OpenGL is the better known of these two technologies and is important because it provides Apple and developers reusable, common graphical frameworks, libraries and drivers for creating apps and games that leverage the advanced graphical processing units (GPU) in today’s Macs. In addition to updating these things, OpenGL 4.1 also brings full compatibility with OpenGL ES 2, the mobile version of OpenGL used by Apple in iOS.
And, these days, desktop and mobile operating system and development strategies need to be coordinated if not in lockstep.
For its part, among other advances, OpenCL 1.2 allows developers to partition a GPU to perform discrete work.
Do OpenGL 4.1 and OpenCL 1.2 seem esoteric and remote to you? Perhaps they are, nevertheless, these technologies are enablers that make Mac app and gaming magic possible and it’s good, very good that Apple is finally upping its desktop operating system infrastructure to support them…
What’s your take?
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