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Macromedia and Intel Team Up for 3D

Macromedia (www.macromedia.com) announced on Tuesday that its upcoming Director 8.5 will include new 3D authoring capabilities, jointly developed with Intel. The software will now also support RealNetworks' files for the first time.

Macromedia isn't trying to promote a new 3D format, however. It lets developers import existing 3D content into Director, rather than learn something completely new. Essentially, Macromedia says it will make it easier for end users to view 3D on the Web by making it viewable with the Shockwave player.

"With the combined power of Macromedia Director 8.5 and Intel's Internet 3D technology, there is finally a standard platform for authoring and delivering 3D content to a wide Internet audience using Shockwave Player," said Kevin Lynch, president of Macromedia products. "Our developer community will be able to use their existing expertise to deliver entirely new magnetic experiences in 3D, and existing 3D content creators now have a great way to deploy their content to the Web."

One of the first customers of the 3D enhancements is Ford Motor Company, which worked with Macromedia and Intel. It is showing off its new Ford Escape sport utility vehicle at www.fordvehicles.com.

"We see this as a wonderful opportunity to connect with our customers," said Stu Smith, Escape marketing manager. "As consumers look for new experiences on the Web, we expect that this technology will help to deliver on that need and give them more reasons to come back to our site."

Director 8.5 will be available in May although a public beta of the 3D-enhanced Shockwave Player is available at http://www.macromedia.com/software/shockwaveplayer/public_beta/.

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