The New Crew Gets to Work

Alex: This week has been mostly focussed on the supporting backend. First and foremost, we now have a Python script that will check the files in the repository for consistency (kind of like baby’s first linter), which will hopefully aid in detecting some bugs in the future. The second big part is the addition of callback functions in the main loops to enable a greater degree of customization from modules. This will help in removing the module dependency inside libOpenspace, an important step towards transitioning to dynamic libraries. Finally, I added code to make the capabilities of the system queryable from Lua scripts. This will be very useful to customize scene files, for example enabling the loading of different texture resolutions depending on the capabilities of the hardware.

Gene: I got the satellite branch working with TLE “batch” files downloaded from After a lot of testing, I found & fixed a bug in the satellite telemetry code that affected position accuracy. I have continued to work on trying to get a working GL texture library in linux. deVIL doesn’t work, FreeImage doesn’t fully work, and SOIL loads all textures but needs image correction. I’ve also worked on getting the cURL module incorporated into OpenSpace’s built-in Lua interpreter.

Matt: I started implementing our configuration system for Launcher specific properties this week.

Eric: This week I made some small changes to the Launcher synchronization controls. Only the ‘default’ scene is selected by default, so the user must check the boxes to download more than the minimum. The checked boxes are green, while unchecked boxes are grey (not red). In the future we might include some status information in this window, but for now it’s just to select what gets downloaded. Matt and I are going to tackle another problem with the sync function: not downloading files that have already been downloaded. I’ve also started thinking about how to pack up binaries for distribution, and of course this will be an automated process.

The next group of Masters students are now getting to work on their projects, and we’ll be hearing much from them in the future about their plans and progress. Here is the first round:

Michael N. & Oskar: Last week we arrived at CCMC where we will work on visualisations associated with Space Weather. This will amongst other things involve expanding the visualisations for Earth’s magnetic field. During our first week we got introduced to the team at CCMC and sat in on several meetings and seminars. We also got everything up and running and continued looking at the code base and some example data provided by the CCMC. Michael also debugged the image loading issues on Linux. It seems that SOIL cannot load progressive JPEGS (baseline is preferred). Latest FreeImage requires JPEG-library version 80, whereas libjpeg-turbo (dependency in SGCT) seems to use version 62.

Jonathan: I arrived to Salt Lake and the SCI Institute three weeks ago and have since then been working on developing a multi-touch interface. I’ve implemented a new touch module that makes OpenSpace TUIO-aware, a cross-platform touch protocol for tangible multi-touch surfaces. Now my main focus is to continue with developing touch gestures to interact with the application through zooming and rotating.

Michael S. & Rickard: We arrived at AMNH, New York about three weeks ago. We will be working with extending the current globebrowsing module with a close up interaction mode of models created from the images from the Mars Rovers. During our first weeks here we have familiarized ourselves with the codebase of OpenSpace and the globebrowsing module. As for now we are doing pre-studies regarding model rendering and looking into alignment issues regarding the models and HiRISE heightmaps.