Google Native Client (NaCl), x86 sandbox browser plugin, OF?

“Native Client is an open-source research technology for running x86 native code in web applications, with the goal of maintaining the browser neutrality, OS portability, and safety that people expect from web apps.”


“At its core, our release consists of a runtime, a browser plugin, and a set of GCC-based compilation tools.”



This went a bit under the radar in the blogosphere, and I thought I’d announce it to the OF community. Basically nativeClient (NaCl) an open-source browser plugin that provides an x86 sandbox, so that you can run untrusted apps in the browser. Needless to say, the opportunity for OF programs would be huge. Downsides of NaCl: as a research technology, the risk it fizzling out is high. And of course it doesn’t address non-x86 devices.

(I’ll set aside some time to try to compile OF for NaCl after March 10th, 2009. I will be at Art and Code next weekend if anyone wants to chat about this.)

This does indeed look like a promising project, and if google gets behind it, it could probably mean something.

But right now the project doesn’t support openGL. It looks like in an attempt to make the plug in secure enough to run native code, it has to do some code analysis and limits the calls that it can make. I found this on the discussion boards.

the security of NaCl depends heavily upon static verification: it
statically checks that the machine instructions follow rules that
enable reliable disassembly and that the disassembled code only use
safe instructions (and patterns), and a separate run-time handles the
dynamic enforcement that is still required. the docs at…-index.html
gives the APIs available to the native client code.

now I’m fairly new to openFrameworks but my understanding is that openGL is quite important to it.