The first hint of graphics cards doing something “more than 3D” was with the introduction of video acceleration. It wasn’t so long ago that 3D graphics cards were only expected to deliver higher frames-per-second in your favorite 3D games. Sure, the graphics companies fought over some image quality issues like the internal color processing precision and the quality of anti-aliasing or anisotropic filtering, but even that was targeted at game performance and quality. Of course, there have been graphics cards for years now designed for the professional 3D market—CAD/CAM, industrial design, folks like that. Still, it’s all 3D rendering of some form or another.