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Chapter 8. CUSTOMIZING COLOR AND TEXTURE > Appearance and Material

Appearance and Material

As you may recall from Chapter 5, "VRML Fundamentals," the objects that populate VRML worlds are created using the Shape node. VRML's built-in Shape node allows developers to specify the form, or geometry, of a shape independent from its appearance. Because every shape's geometry and appearance are divided into two distinct bodies of code, you can easily alter the way a shape looks without touching the code that defines the form of the shape. Also, you can quickly customize the color and texture of every object in a scene no matter how complicated the form of the object. Customizing the appearance of simple, primitive objects (such as cones and spheres) follows the same basic steps that are required for more sophisticated objects (such as elevated grid shapes, indexed face shapes, or even text). Once you can customize the appearance of one type of object, you're well on your way to doing so for every type.

To customize the color or texture of a VRML object, however simple or complex, you will alter the appearance field of the object's Shape node:


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