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OpenGL Programming on Mac OS X: Architecture, Performance, and Integration by J. D. Sullivan, Robert P. Kuehne

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Chapter 13. OpenGL Extensions

Overview

In this chapter we’ll discuss a design feature of OpenGL known as OpenGL extensions. We’ll describe how these extensions work, how to discover which ones are available, and how to determine exactly how extensions operate. We’ll also describe a few libraries for working with extensions that make your life as a developer easier. But first, what are extensions, and why do they exist?

Extensions are a mechanism that the OpenGL Architecture Review Board created for OpenGL to allow custom features beyond the scope of a particular version of OpenGL. They enable the creation of new features, modify existing features, expose capabilities on hardware that wasn’t present when the current version of OpenGL was ratified, ...

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