Book Description Review Enjoying a multiuser virtual environment is easy--after all, its realistic interface is designed to be. Building a networked virtual environment (net-VE), on the other hand, is quite a formidable task. Networked Virtual Environments: Design and Implementation is a technical introduction to this exciting software development field and lays out many of the challenges net-VE developers must face and the weapons they have in their arsenal. This book doesn't take you through the process of building a net-VE. Instead, it focuses on the architecture and standards that come into play. The writing is a bit on the dry side, methodically presenting the technical issues; however, the text works well for systematically building knowledge of this complex topic. Authors Sandeep Singhal and Michael Zyda introduce the concept of net-VEs in general, explaining what a net-VE is and all of the technical hurdles programmers must clear. They also delve into the relevant communication standards and topologies. The book looks at recent developments and offers some basic communication techniques in Java, C++, and C via TCP/IP, User Datagram Protocol/Internet Protocol (UDP/IP), and multicasting. There is a lot of material here, and you'll likely need more to fully implement a net-VE. However, this book gives game developers, graphics programmers, and forward-looking Web site designers an excellent technical background. --Stephen W. Plain Topics covered: Prerequisites for a net-VE, relevant network architectures, common network protocols, resource management and optimization, VRML, and Internet gaming. Read more Review 'Networked Virtual Environments' is the most comprehensive and current text on the subject. Many recent advancements are reflected in the body of this text. It is refreshing to see an open and informed perspective on the subject, one that does the topic justice without leaning to heavily in one direction or another. This 'soup to nuts' approach, from the lowly socket, to thread design, to hybrid multicast aggregation really provides the reader with the rational behind the requirements for reliable end-to-end, flow controlled data transfers. I know from personal experience (and involvement with the Internet Engineering Task Force) that many network design engineers are unaware of this class of applications, and the implications and impacts they will have on existing systems and the commodity internet. Unlike their unicast brethren, Net-VEs occupy a very rich design space, and can embody large numbers of simultaneous users, but without some of the bottleneck limitations commonly associated with client/server models. Where else can you find applications that require support for multiple streams, varying start times, real-time operations, data consistency and ordering, as well as resilience and/or reliability? For this reason, I see Networked Virtual Environments as the application that will drive the Next Generation Internet. From this humble beginning, revolutionary new applications will evolve and will continue to build upon the principles outlined in this book. -- Michael Myjak, Chair, Large Scale Multicast Applications Working Group, IETF; & Simulation Interoperability Standards Organization, Standards Activity Committee Vice Chair'This is an excellent resource for those with backgrounds in distributed systems and graphics who want to understand the intricacies of large scale virtual environments. It has both important concepts and a useful level of implementation detail.' -- Andries van Dam, T.J. Watson, Jr. University Professor of Technology and Education and Professor of Computer Science, Brown University Read more See all Editorial Reviews