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Portability enables developers to write WebGL2-style applications that still work on older WebGL versions, and are portable across browsers and node, as well as across operating systems and GPUs.

WebGL Versions

Unified API offers a single, WebGL2-based API for accessing WebGL functionality. This same API works regardless of whether a function is provided by WebGL2 or a WebGL1 extension.

Taking advantage of WebGL1 extensions when available.


When possible, "polyfills" are done on the WebGLRenderingContext level, meaning that many missing WebGL2 functions are injected into WebGL1 contexts, with implementations that transparently use WebGL1 extensions while providing the WebGL2 API.

TBA - Couple of examples of polyfilled functionality (instanced rendering, ...)?

Feature Detection System offers a feature detection system that is easier to work with than directly querying for WebGL extensions. The main advantages is that it allows a single function calls to determine whether a capability is present, regardless of whether it is available through a WebGL1 extension or WebGL2. It also offers a list of capability names that more accurately reflect the capability being queries, compare to the rather technical WebGL extension names.


TBA - Examples link to reference

GLSL Versions

WebGL2 introduces GLSL version 3.00. While it introduces important new features, parts of the GLSL shader language syntax changed. This is a complication because when writing reusable shader code (such as a shader module), it would often be desirable for GLSL code to work in both GLSL 1.00 and 3.00 shaders.

See [shadertools].