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6.6 Summary

By now you should have some good ideas as to how you will assemble your application from the components supplied by the Java 3D API, as well as many of the capabilities of the API. The VirtualUniverse class provides flexibility in defining your application’s view of your virtual world while the SimpleUniverse class abstracts some of the underlying details and provides a good starting point for simple applications or prototypes. Java 3D’s view model includes built−in support for some powerful features: multiple Locales for very large worlds, rendering to stereoscopic displays, geometry to represent both the view and the viewer, and a physical environment for the view. We have only been able to touch on many of the capabilities—many more are introduced in later chapters. If you are interested in using the VirtualUniverse class directly please refer to chapter 17 and the SwingTest example, which builds up the scenegraph from scratch using VirtualUniverse.

In the next chapter, we will start to discuss the important question of the data model you should adopt for your application. Your data model design will ideally be efficient for rendering, while flexible and maintainable enough to satisfy your application and development goals.