Tour de Blocks: Preview the Benefits of Parallel JavaScript* Technology by Intel Labs

Description

Tour de Blocks is a browser-based game developed by Intel Labs that allows you to preview the benefits of Parallel JavaScript* technology. The game is built using the River Trail prototype implementation of the technology available on GitHub.com.

Tour de Blocks builds on current HTML5 technology for graphics and audio, including 3D graphics with WebGL via the new canvas tag and audio playback using the new audio tag. In the game, the player shoots down a number of blocks from a platform by throwing a block, similar to a carnival game. Parallel JavaScript is used to speed up the physics simulation that is required to animate the colliding boxes, enabling more sophisticated designs with a higher number of boxes.

You can see the benefit of Parallel Javascript by clicking the button to enable or disable River Trail. When enabled, you will see a higher frame rate when using a multi-core system. The difference increases with more complex levels using more complex physics.

Keep in mind that Tour de Blocks is not a commercial game, but instead a fun way to experience the benefits of a research prototype. As such, we expect there may be an occasional bug. We are very interested in your feedback, so please leave us a comment below!  

Requirements

The River Trail prototype is supported only on Windows* (XP and newer versions) and Mac OS X* (version 10.6 and newer) at this time. We recommend a system with 2nd Generation dual-core Core i5 processor or better. Even more benefit will be seen from a quad-core system.

Step 1. Download and install Firefox (version 15 or newer)
If you already have Firefox* installed, you can check what version it is by clicking the Firefox menu button at the top-left of the Firefox window and clicking "Help" and then clicking "About Firefox". If the version is less than "15", you will need to download a newer version.

To download the latest version of Firefox, go to the Mozilla home page at (http://www.mozilla.org) and click the green button that says "Firefox Free Download."

Step 2. Download and install the Intel® SDK for OpenCL*
If you are using Mac OS, you already have an OpenCL SDK installed and you can skip this step. If you are on Windows and don’t already have the OpenCL SDK, you will need to install the Intel SDK for OpenCL. Go to http://software.intel.com/en-us/vcsource/tools/opencl-sdk. On the top right, you will see a drop-down menu for selecting the version you want to download. Select your operating system and click the download button. If you are unsure whether you have 32-bit or 64-bit Windows, select the 32-bit version.

This will save the OpenCL SDK installer to your machine. Find this file and double click to launch the installer, which will guide your through the installation process.

For more on installing OpenCL see the Intel SDK for OpenCL installation notes at: http://software.intel.com/en-us/articles/installation-notes-opencl-sdk/.

Step 3. Install the River Trail extension
The River Trail prototype is installed as an extension to the Firefox browser. The first step is to download the extension. Open up a Firefox window and go to the downloads page at: https://github.com/RiverTrail/RiverTrail/downloads. You will see a list of extensions for various versions of Firefox, select the one that matches your Firefox version. For example, if your Firefox version is 15 you will click on the file named "rivertrail-0.15.xpi".

This will bring up a dialog box asking if you want to save this file. Select "Save file" and click "OK." This will download a file called "rivertrail-0.15.xpi" on your machine (typically in a folder called "Downloads" or "My Downloads"). Now just drag this file into the Firefox window. This will bring up a dialog asking whether you want to install the extension. Click "Install." You will then be asked to restart Firefox. When Firefox restarts, the River Trail extension will be installed and ready for use.

If you wish, you can confirm that it has been installed by clicking on the "Firefox" menu at the top left of your browser window, clicking "Addons," and then clicking "Extensions" in the menu on the left. There should be an extension called "River Trail for Firefox" listed. Because the River Trail extension is a prototype,  we recommend returning to this window and disabling it after you are finished playing Tour De Blocks.

Step 4. Play Tour de Blocks!
Click here to start playing!

Per informazioni complete sulle ottimizzazioni del compilatore, consultare l'Avviso sull'ottimizzazione