X3D-Edit Free Software For X3D Code Edition And Worldbuilding

X3D-Edit is a widely known solution for creating content in X3D (.x3d) using the XML encoding. It is an intermediate solution between visual editors like Flux Studio and pure-code editors, so it has the advantages of both for X3D editing.

X3D-Edit 3.2 was created by Mike Bailey and Don Brutzman.

Recently, the X3DV Module Suite was added as a compatible plugin suite. This means that you can install both softwares together, X3D-Edit and the X3DV Module Suite.

In the future I'll publish a long review on X3D-Edit, but for now let's examine the basic features of this software so we can have an introduction on what it's for.

X3D-Edit is written in Java and XML. This means that it can be run on most of the operative systems (Windows, Linux, MacOSX, Solaris). As it was built with Netbeans, it is available as a Netbeans IDE plugin and as a standalone application. Again, you can install X3D-Edit as a plugin into Netbeans IDE, and X3DV Module Suite too, at the same time. One will deal with .x3d and the other with .x3dv files (and VRML too).


X3D-Edit edits X3D scenes in XML encoding (with .x3d extension). It also has a 3D preview of the scenes using Xj3D, the opensource library and browser for X3D and VRML.

Its license ( BSD-style ) allows to be used to build worlds in X3D for commercial and personal use.

It can also validate your scene and find errors in the XML encoding.

This is a list of its basic features:
  • Syntax highlighting for XML encoding of X3D files (.x3d extension).
  • Drag&Drop palette of X3D nodes in XML encoding.
  • Navigation window support in Netbeans IDE.
  • Specific editors for each node.
  • Validates X3D files in XML encoding.
  • X3D tooltips and X3D Specification support.
  • The preview can use Xj3D or an external web browser.
As we've been seeing in the last months, the range of available tools for X3D authoring is increasing. There are commercial and freeware tools, and also opensource tools.

X3D-Edit is one of the most successful opensource projects for X3D editing. It is feature rich, and will have more features in the future. Some of them are specially interesting, as the binary encoding support, which can increase the downloading speed of X3D files, and increased security for content authors.

We'll be longing for further news of this great project, and it's great news that the X3DV Module Suite is compatible with their project.

-Jordi R. Cardona-


© 2008 by Jordi R. Cardona. Link to this post without copying the text.

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