Adobe's play with Acrobat 3D didn't go too well. Acrobat 3D was for creating 3D models and save them as PDF. It was a nifty and useful idea, but didn't sell much as everyone used their favorite 3D tool and printed (PDF using Distiller) the different views. But now Adobe has added 3D to its latest Flash Player 10. Adobe is showcasing the feature through a beta.
Flash Player 10 is available for Windows, Linux and OSX and features new 3D filters. The latest beta known by codename "Astro" has 3D filters and custom effects and allows native GPU acceleration for 3D animations. Thus this brings the power of the GPU to be web through Flash animations and videos. And Flash being the de-facto for animation on the web, its an excellent thing for the web developers and users alike.
From Adobe's Press Release:
Adobe Systems Incorporated (Nasdaq:ADBE) today announced that the pre-release version of Adobe® Flash® Player 10 software is now available in beta on Adobe Labs with new expressive features for interactive designers and developers to build richer and more immersive Web experiences.... Custom filters and effects are created with the Adobe Pixel Bender™ toolkit, also available for no charge on Adobe Labs. Adobe Pixel Bender is the same technology behind many filters and special effects in Adobe After Effects® CS3 software. Flash Player 10 beta can now create their own filters, blend modes and fills with Adobe Pixel Bender by writing small pixel-shading functions that can be parameterized to create animated effects or change the effect on rich media content at runtime.