ParallelGraphics has released Image Model Optimizer, a tool that turns complex 3D objects into VRML representations. It can work with a wide variety of CAD/CAM/CAE formats, as well as 3D models created in Discreet’s 3D Studio Max. The tool produces VRML models for Web sites that can be viewed by any VRML browser or plug-in (such as the company’s own Cortona Web browser plug-in). It converts models into VRML usable in Web sites by removing most of the polygons and reducing the resolution of textures. Most of this is done automatically to fit a certain file size but users have manual control as well, for example to keep the resolution higher on more important parts of objects while reducing the rest. The software is designed to work alongside the company’s Internet Scene Assembler tool, which allows animation and interactivity to be created within objects and the scenes that surround them. Potential applications for this include interactive product manuals with 3D demonstrations of user tasks. Image Model Optimizer costs $999 (around £680) plus VAT.