[psas-software] 3-D rocket rendering

Jamey Sharp jamey at minilop.net
Fri Dec 16 01:48:25 PST 2005

Just thought I'd mention that I've finally put up a publicly accessible
copy of my old rocket rendering graphics project. You can browse to, or
point your favorite Subversion client at, this URL:

Plusses: I put a lot of effort into a camera positioning algorithm that
doesn't make me feel ill, because it doesn't swing the camera around
rapidly (see FOLLOW_METHOD CAMERA_HINT in camera.cpp). I demonstrated
using OpenGL to do some interesting things, like a top-down overlay view
in the corner of the window. I put some effort into landscape rendering,
using sample height-map images from the USGS in lieu of figuring out how
to process real topographical data. The code has an interface that would
probably let it be plugged with minimal glue either into David's
simulator, or into a telemetry receiver that includes some sort of
position and orientation estimate.

Minuses: The code is really old (from Spring 2001 or so) and depends on
a version of Xerces that isn't readily available now. Also, it's written
in C++. (I don't just whine about that language for academic reasons:
mine is the whining of experience! *grin*)

Ambiguouses: I built a small XML language to describe what the rocket
looks like, and there's a fair bit of code to parse and render that
description. I'll let you decide whether that's a bug or a feature.

Huh. After looking back over this code, I'm actually reasonably proud of
it still. I totally didn't expect that, five years later.


p.s. If you choose to browse the rest of my new repository, beware: it's
an archive of much of what I've created over the last five years that
*wasn't* worth creating a project on, say, freedesktop.org for. I'm
proud of some of it, like this essay:
but then there was the term I decided to learn about the Java Native
Interface, GNU readline, and the autotools, all at once:
I disclaim all responsibility for headaches suffered from casually
browsing this tree.
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