NASA World Wind 1.4 released

Update : if you are having trouble viewing the video try this direct link http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-rfxy7mn7mw

Here is what you have all been eagerly waiting for NASA World Wind 1.4 is out!

After lots of blood and sweat from the Open Source team, 1.4 has finally been approved by NASA for release. As my blog readers know NASA had to shift it’s priorities to the upcoming Java version of World Wind, leaving 1.4 effectively orphaned, but the Open Source community came together and with a lot of hard work we were able to finish what Chris Maxwell started.

So what is so great about 1.4? First of all it is written using .NET 2.0 which allows for some cool new features but more importantly, thanks to Microsoft allowing developers to use visual C# express for free we were able to easily increase the development team, who simply could not afford to purchase visual studio. Ok they say pictures speak a thousand words, so I made another video to show off some new features, visit the What’s new in 1.4 page at WorldWind Central for more details on how to use these features.

Video run down –

First off we see the globe textured using classic Blue Marble then zoom in to NY state (from the zoomit! layer by WWC/FEF), you can also see placenames here provided by WFS (a new feature in 1.4).

Next comes the spinning Earth, showing off HDR atmospheric scattering and sunlight shading, pretty isn’t it? You can also see global clouds, which are downloaded each time you start World Wind and are only a few hours old.

Now we zoom in to the Grand Canyon, the imagery here is a combination of two layers, NLT Landsat (15m/pixel) and USGS 1m grey scale imagery, the opacity of the USGS layer is set to 100, this gives a great colour mix.

To the Moon Alice! Now we soar over the cratered surface of te Moon viewing first Clementine 30xx then Clementine 40xx Imagery, then back to Clementine 30xx as we zoom back into space.

A quick spin round Venus (Magellan imagery), then on to Mars as we fly down into Valles Marineris( MOC imagery), after a quick flight through the canyon we come up and swoop towards Olympus Mons, rotate around the largest volcano in the Soar system then return once again to space.

Now on to Jupiter and it’s massive storms, then we return to the safety of planet Earth, and zoom down under to New Zealand to witness a stunning sunrise, again achieved using World Wind’s new sunshading and atmospheric scattering code.

After a short intermission we return to see some more advanced features, GE users can quit now ;), A view of Mount St.Helens greets us, this is the USGS Topographic layer with fixed sunshading, the sunshading really brings out features that a paper map just can’t. Once we have had a quick view of the surrounding area we return to the volcano, then swap layers between, Geocover 1990, Geocover 2000, NLT pseudo color and NLT Landsat. Also note here the new globe overview, this allows you to easily discern your viewing position on Earth’s surface even when zoomed in, and the scale bar so you can get an idea of the size of the objects you are viewing.

Next we see near real time weather from NRL, by selecting several entries you can see animated sequences, the first sequence is global IR cloud cover, then global water vapor, there are too many other weather data sets to even attempt listing here so lets move on.

Here we see the built in WMS browser, selecting data from the SVS server we can see an animation of sea surface temperatures during hurricane Katrina.

Now we see the ever popular earthquake marker plugin, this is the 7-day list, clicking on an icon opens the appropriate page on the USGS website, this page is no longer opened in an external browser like previous versions of World Wind, but in the brand new internal web browser.

And on to Rapid Fire MODIS, this allows you to view data collected from the MODIS satellites, such as hurricane images, quickly and easily.

Finally we view the new waving flags plugin, this lets you see data collected from the CIA world factbook in an interesting new way. After you click a flag you see a window open with general information about the country, by clicking the left and right arrows you can see more specific data such as birth and death rates. The data is also graphically displayed on the screen as a kind of 3-D bar graph, this allows you to easily compare data between countries, and of course looks darn cool.

Well as they say, that’s a wrap folks, I hope you all enjoy World Wind 1.4, and my trailer of course (you can download a high res version here, be warned it’s big), thanks to everyone who helped make 1.4 possible, now to sleep for a week…

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25 thoughts on “NASA World Wind 1.4 released

  • Thanks Bull and everyone working on WW. It looks awesome. I haven’t been using WW for a year but I’m going to download it and I’ll be back!

    -Neimo

  • one giant leap. the atmosphere effects are spectacular but seem to cover above-horizon stuff only. This means a nice fuzzy halo around earth and beautiful sunsets. But no below-horizon scattering so no purple mountains, distance-dependant fog that looks like a whitish ‘inner-halo’ at high altitudes, or other such effects. The latest alpha build of Celestia implements it and it seems to be the final step to a photorealistic rendering so I’d love to see it in the next release. thank you so much!

  • well, with the use of .NET & C#, you have deliberately excluded non windows users.

    I wish I could write something + about it but I cannot run it at all.

  • I second that. Why are you spending taxpayer money on something that not all taxpayers have access to? This is the only NASA project that I am aware of which purposely excludes certain groups of taxpayers.

  • If you would read:

    “NASA had to shift it’s priorities to the upcoming Java version of World Wind, leaving 1.4 effectively orphaned, but the Open Source community came together and with a lot of hard work we were able to finish what Chris Maxwell started.”

    It stated that the open source community did this, not taxpayer money. The tax money is going to the Java version which would be platform independent.

  • I couldn’t have said it better myself.

    And excluding non-windows users was not the reason for usng C#, it was about making something quickly and within the small departments budget.

    The souce compiles under mono, the sticking point is the directx dependencies, but this is OS so if you want OpenGL support step up and start coding.

  • I understand now.

    Open Source developers help Micro$oft to hold it’s monopoly. Really Good Idea.

    Please, think about a VB version. And remember, for data storage you must to use M$/Access.

    BTW: You forgot to use wmv format for the movies.

  • I just told you,

    The source compiles under mono, the sticking point is the directx dependencies, but this is OS so if you want OpenGL support step up and start coding.

  • For data storage, no. You do not use Access.

    There are only 3 costs to an imagery-feeding World Wind system: Windows, hardware and skills. The alternatives don’t even exist – and if you think they do, you’re not using it in the right way.

  • I will wait for Java – OpenGL version to start coding thanks.

    But this is not the point, you know

    BTW: Port from DirectX -> OpenGL, I think I will need to know DirectX, and I don’t know it because I am not a Windows user, and never will be (again).

    No M$/Access?. Use M$/SQLServer instead.

  • Congrats guys….keep up the good work.

    And I have to respond to this from one of the anons….

    “I second that. Why are you spending taxpayer money on something that not all taxpayers have access to? This is the only NASA project that I am aware of which purposely excludes certain groups of taxpayers.”

    Frankly, this is an glaring example of sad state of…..fill in the blank.

    Please think about what you just said. Does it still sound plausible/right/corrrect?

    If you do, please show me the line to ride the space shuttle. I wonder how much the tickets are or are they free since I’m a taxpayer?

    Better yet….what about all the people without a computer and have gaming consoles or TVs. Should we pay to have NWW ported over to those formats? We are excluding a group or groups of taxpayers if we don’t.

    KoS

  • When I was working in window$ I used to praise MS visual stuff, C# and everything I had ever taken a look at because I never had to switch. After I moved (had to move), I found NetBeans and other ‘stuff’ that I was thinking before was not as good as the M$ one or doesn’t exist at all. I realized that my opinions were wrong because of the lack of experience and I was trying to hide it blaming on not-as-good technologies outside M$.

  • Wow looks awesome.

    I have announced it on our MapPoint site —

    World Wind

    Microsoft has Virtual Earth which is like Google Maps. WOuld you say that WW is like Google Earth on steroids?

  • What ppl complain here is you are using a free open model to lock ppl in propietary technology (Windows+DirectX).

    Sounds very bad to me, and I am not alone as you see.

    Got the idea?

  • I understand your point of view, but the truth is we never made a decision to lock out anybody, World Wind would never have happened without using C#. Saying that we are working on making World Wind cross platform.

  • Congratulations on an excellent release :) You deserve your week of sleep.
    But of course it would be nice to have it not MS dependent, but that takes considerable time and effort. I’m just happy with what we have now, which I must say, looks rather more impressive than GE. (no flame war intended)
    Just wondering, do you guys get paid at all for this? My impression is no, but I’m curious.

  • Thanks maverick256, no we don’t get paid unfortunately ;) It’s all done because we love World Wind and the benifits it brings to education, disaster management etc. and of course the pleasure it gives the general user.

  • Congratulations mister, it’s great !!! Viva la madre que lo parió y engendró !!! Hurra !!! Cheers !!!

    a question, is open source your application ???

    great code

  • Hi I like this comment and it is so informational and I am definetly going to save it. One thing to say the Superb analysis this article has is trully remarkable.No one goes that extra mile these days? Well Done :) Just another suggestion you shouldinstall a Translator Application for your Global Readers .

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