Microsoft Multimedia Developers Convene for Meltdown ’97

REDMOND, Wash., Feb. 18, 1997 — Furthering its commitment to multimedia developers, Microsoft Corp. last week held its semiannual gathering of leading hardware and software developers – Meltdown ’97, an intense week of round-robin product testing, debugging and information sharing. Meltdown events provide developers the opportunity to test their latest products with the most recent advancements in Microsoft® DirectX
technology, which ultimately results in a true plug-and-play experience for consumers.

“Holiday ’96 was such a success for our partners that this Meltdown event attracted a two-fold increase in attendance and testing,” said Ty Graham, DirectX hardware evangelist for Microsoft. “The delivery of the alpha version of DirectX 5 Software Development Kit (SDK) to developers this early in the development process will enable a new generation of content in time for the 1997 holiday season.”

In addition to providing testing and educational seminars, Meltdown ’97 was the primary venue for previewing and soliciting vendor feedback on DirectX 5, scheduled for release in June 1997. DirectX 5 is a set of application programming interfaces (APIs) that allows developers of games and other interactive content to access specialized hardware features without having to write hardware-specific code. Key features of DirectX 5 will include the following:

  • DrawPrimitive. Developed in direct response to developer demand, DrawPrimitive is a polygon-level service that bypasses the Direct3D
    execute buffers and passes polygon-level information directly to the 3-D hardware. This service is better suited for applications that use polygon sorting algorithms for hidden surface removal, as opposed to a depth buffer. Since most current 3-D applications today use such a polygon sorting algorithm, this new API is eagerly anticipated by the developer community. A technical white paper on DrawPrimitive is available on the Microsoft multimedia Web site at

  • DirectSound
    3D HAL. Provides the capability of accelerating 3-D audio specialization in hardware. This new API delivers high-quality surround sound to content, taking consumer immersion to the next level.

  • DirectInput


    API Force Feedback.
    Developed specifically to control the newly available force feedback joysticks, giving realistic feedback to the user during game play. The Force Feedback service will allow joysticks to bump to the side when running into a wall or simulate the recoil of a weapon being fired.

  • Talisman rendering feature support. For developing more realistic effects, these new services add support for sort-independent antialiasing (for eliminating ragged edges), anisotropic texture filtering (for eliminating blurring artifacts) and range-based fog (for eliminating variable fogging of objects). Applications being written to DirectX 5 can check and set these capabilities, allowing the applications to achieve much higher quality when they run on hardware supporting these advanced Talisman features.

Meltdown ’97 participants included the following companies:

  • 3Dlabs

  • 3DFX Interactive

  • 47-Tek Inc.

  • Above the Garage Productions

  • Acer Advanced Labs Inc.

  • Activision Inc.

  • Alliance Semiconductor Corp.

  • AMD

  • Animetix Technologies Inc.

  • Appian Graphics

  • The ASCII Group Inc.

  • AT & T Corp.

  • ATI Research Inc.

  • ATI Technologies Inc.

  • Aviation Simulations International Inc.

  • Axial Systems

  • Beyond Games

  • Brooktree Division of Rockwell Semiconductor Systems

  • Brooktree Texas Design Center

  • Canopus Marketing Corp.

  • Chips Technologies Inc.

  • Chromatic Research Inc.

  • Cirrus Logic Inc.

  • Compaq Computer Corp.

  • Cornerstone Imaging Inc.

  • Creative Labs Inc.

  • Crystal Semiconductor Corp.

  • Cyrix Corp.

  • Diamond Multimedia Systems Inc.

  • Dimension X

  • Disney Interactive

  • Ego Software

  • EIDOS Interactive

  • Electronic Arts

  • ELSA GmbH

  • Equator Technologies Inc.

  • ESS Technology Inc.

  • FASA Interactive Technologies

  • Focal Point Software Inc.

  • Fox Interactive

  • Fujitsu Microelectronics Inc.

  • Gamebank

  • Gateway 2000 Inc.

  • GT Interactive Software

  • Hewlett-Packard Co.

  • I-O Data Device Inc.

  • IBM Corp.

  • InteGraphics Systems

  • Integrative Device Technology

  • Intel Corp.

  • Intergraph Corp.

  • InVision Interactive

  • Kinesoft Development Corp.

  • Looking Glass Technologies Inc.

  • LucasArts Entertainment Co.

  • Massmedia

  • Matrox Graphics Inc.

  • Media Reality Technologies Inc.

  • MegaMedia

  • Melco Inc.

  • Mindscape Inc.

  • Mitsubishi Electric PC Division – ACL

  • NEC Corp.

  • NeoMagic Corp.

  • Nikkei Business Publications

  • Number Nine Visual Technology Corp.

  • NVIDIA Corp.

  • Oak Technology Inc.

  • OPTi Inc.

  • Origin Systems Inc.

  • OT Sports

  • Pepper’s Ghost Productions

  • Philips Semiconductors Inc.

  • Platform Technologies Inc.

  • Providenza & Boekelheide Inc.

  • Psygnosis Ltd.

  • Quadramix

  • Real3D, A Lockheed Martin Co.

  • Reality Bytes Inc.

  • Red Storm Entertainment

  • Rendition Inc.

  • Rockwell Semiconductor Systems

  • S-MOS Systems Inc.

  • S3 Inc.

  • SEGA

  • Siemens AG

  • Sierra On-Line

  • Silicon Engineering Inc

  • Silicon Integrative Systems Corp.

  • Silicon Reality

  • SimTex Software

  • SingleTrac Entertainment Technologies Inc.

  • Sony Electronics Inc.

  • Spacetime Arts Inc.

  • Spectrum HoloByte Inc.

  • Spire Technologies

  • SquareSoft Inc.

  • Starlite Systems Technology Ltd.

  • STB Systems Inc.

  • Texas Instruments Inc.

  • The 3DO Company

  • ThinkWare Inc.

  • Titanic Entertainment Inc.

  • Trident Microsystems Inc.

  • TriTech Microelectronics Pty Ltd.

  • Tseng Labs Inc.

  • Ubi Soft Entertainment

  • VideoLogic

  • Viewpoint DataLabs

  • Virgin Interactive Entertainment Inc.

  • Visible Decisions Inc.

  • VLSI Technology Inc.

  • Westwood Studios

  • WK Software

  • Xing Technology Corp.

The next Meltdown ’97 event will be held July 9-11 in Bellevue, Wash. For more information on registering, refer to the Microsoft Developer Web site at Http:// .

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (NASDAQ
) is the worldwide leader in software for personal computers. The company offers a wide range of products and services for business and personal use, each designed with the mission of making it easier and more enjoyable for people to take advantage of the full power of personal computing every day.

Microsoft, DirectX, Direct 3D, DirectSound, DirectInput, Monster Truck Madness and Hellbender are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries.

Other product and company names herein may be trademarks of their respective owners.

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