Unreal Engine 4 support added to Firefox without plugins

Mozilla and Epic Games have teamed up to bring Unreal Engine 4 to Firefox, expanding on the various graphics libraries the web browser supports. Mozilla added Unreal Engine 3 support to Firefox back in March 2013, so it’s no surprise the updated game engine is also compatible.

The demo that Mozilla posted on their YouTube channel shows the latest iteration of the Unreal Engine running at “near-native speeds” without the use of plugins. This is particularly good news for web developers, who won’t need to get Firefox users to download anything before their impressive 3D in-browser games can be played.

But it’s not just 3D games that Unreal Engine 4 will support in Firefox: basic 2D animations for platforming games are also possible, as shown by Unreal’s Swing Ninja demo. The aim for integrating the Unreal Engine 4 in Firefox is to create in-browser games that are “almost indistinguishable” from those that you “have had to wait to download and install”.

Mozilla will be at the Game Developer’s Conference next week to show more of Unreal Engine 4 in Firefox. Meanwhile, PC gamers and PlayStation 4 owners will be able to get their first taste of an Unreal Engine 4-powered game in April, when survival horror game Daylight is launched.

via Unreal Engine 4 support added to Firefox without plugins – TechSpot.

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Firefox 24 delivers mass tab closing on desktop, WebRTC on Android

The latest revision of Firefox is now available for Windows, Mac, Linux and Android. Firefox 24 delivers a number of improvements including the ability to quickly and easily close a selection of tabs on the desktop as well as NFC sharing and WebRTC on Android.

Firefox 24 isn’t exactly a huge update for desktop users but there are a few noteworthy changes. Mac users will find a new scrollbar style when using OS X 10.7 or newer while a new social feature allows users to tear-off chat windows to view separately by dragging them out. The biggest change on the desktop, however, is probably the ability to close all tabs “to the right” with a single click.

On the mobile side, WebRTC is now enabled by default on Android. WebRTC, is a new HTML5 API that enables real-time communication like video calls directly in the browser. The three WebRTC components (getUserMedia, PeerConnection and DataChannels) will grant developer access to a user’s webcam and microphone, enable calls from one browser to another and allow peer-to-peer data transfer between browsers without the assistance of a server, respectively.

Firefox 24 for Android now also supports sharing via NFC. Enabled devices can share open tabs simply by bumping two devices together. Elsewhere, the built-in Reader now lets users change fonts, add an article to the Reading List and even save all content offline. There’s even an option to reverse background and text color (dark text on a light background or light text on a dark background).

via Firefox 24 delivers mass tab closing on desktop, WebRTC on Android – TechSpot.

Mozilla experimenting with Firefox API for content personalization

Mozilla is experimenting with an interesting personalization experience, suggesting a new Firefox API that would collect browser activity and provide it to websites so that they could prioritize content based on your interests. For example, if you’ve been reading a lot about cars recently around the internet, you could provide this information to a news website that would, in turn, show you a range of car-related articles at the top of their site.

One aspect of the proposed API would be user control, with users being able to select the amount of information shared with websites; if you’re concerned about privacy, you could disable the feature and share no information. Mozilla has always been a supporter of user privacy on the web, so while it’s a little unusual to see a proposal such as this coming from them, they are being forthcoming about what they’re trying to achieve while giving the necessary privacy controls to the user.

The idea is just a proposal at this stage from Mozilla Labs, and with the help of “user researchers” the team has begun testing the concept with a range of volunteers to see how they respond to personalized content. They’re also looking for feedback on the idea, asking people to head to the Labs discussion group if they have anything to say about it.

As the project is still in the very early stages, it may be be a while before we see where this goes. The idea also hinges on web content producers using the new API, so it’ll be interesting to see where this goes in the months and years to come.

via Mozilla experimenting with Firefox API for content personalization – TechSpot.

Mozilla to bring Unreal Engine 3 to the web without plug-ins

Epic has teamed up with Mozilla to bring Unreal Engine 3 to the web with Firefox, plug-in free. The announcement came during the Game Developers Conference where Mozilla showed Unreal Tournament and the Citadel demo running natively in the browser.

Surprisingly enough, Mozilla’s engineering director and the inventor of WebGL Vladimir Vukicevic said it only took four days to port the entire Unreal 3 Engine to the web as only small adjustments were needed.

Support for the engine will also be coming to Mozilla’s mobile browser for Android and naturally, Firefox OS. There is a bit of a performance hit as games are expected to run within 2x of native performance but considering that something like this wasn’t even conceivable just a few years ago, it’s rather impressive even if it isn’t as fast as native.

If you recall, this isn’t the first time we’ve seen Epic’s Unreal Engine 3 on the web. Back in October 2011, the company announced support for Adobe Flash which allowed a number of titles to be played within browsers via social networking sites. Since then, of course, Flash has fallen to the wayside which likely prompted Epic to reevaluate their web presence and ultimately elect to work with Mozilla.

We are told that a demo will be available in the coming weeks but in the meantime, interested parties are urged to check out Mozilla’s BananaBread demo that’s works with the latest Firefox Nightly.

via Mozilla to bring Unreal Engine 3 to the web without plug-ins – TechSpot.