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The following open source development tools are available for use in developing virtual reality applications. Please check individual sites for licence details.


VR Juggler

VR Juggler Virtual Reality Development Tool

VR Juggler is one of the most popular Open Source tool set for developing virtual reality applications> Developed by VRAC, it's clustering capabilities are a key element of the software infrastructure supporting the 100 Million pixel C6 immersive virtual reality environment.

It is being used world-wide and includes support for most of the popular computer platforms and virtual reality systems.

The Juggler Suite provides:

  • VR Juggler virtual platform
  • Device management system called Gadgeteer (local or remote access to I/O devices)
  • Standalone generic math template library
  • Portable runtime that provides cross-platform thread, socket, and serial port primitives
  • Simple sound abstraction - Sonix
  • Distributed model-view-controller implementation - Tweek
  • XML-based configuration system with multivariate types

VE Suite

VE Suite Virtual Reality Development Toolkit

VE-Suite is an open source virtual engineering design analysis toolkit/software package developed by Iowa State Professor Mark Bryden and a team of VRAC researchers. Currently, VE-Suite is used in several large organizations: John Deere, NETL, REI, and INL (Idaho National Laboratory).

VE-Suite allows users to take complex data and orchestrate them into a more easily understood representation in two or three dimensions. VE-Suite is an extensible software architecture and is composed of several tools, including:

  • VE-CE - Software engine that controls and schedules information flow from one source to another. Provides information to the virtual decision making environment
  • VE-Conductor - User interface in the virtual decision making space used to construct the virtual space and provide users with the mechanism to control the decision making space
  • VE-Xplorer - Virtual decision making space used to display graphical information to help users interpret information provided by user-defined information sources
  • VE-Open - Connects the core engines of VE-Suite. Transfers data from user-defined information sources to VE-Suite software engines

VE-Suite enables users to simultaneously interact with engineering analyses and graphical models to create a virtual decision-making environment. Currently, this package can read, display, and combine multiple steady and transient data sets including experimental data, CAD data, and CFD/FEA results in both two and three dimensions.


Open SG

OpenSG Virtual Reality Scenegraph System

OpenSG® is a portable scenegraph system that creates realtime graphics for virtual reality applications. Initiated by Dirk Reiners (a new HCI faculty member at Iowa State), Allen Bierbaum, and Kent Watsen, OpenSG is the rendering basis on top of which VR systems can be built [ it is not a complete VR system]. The tool provides: portability, multi-threading support, support for multiple graphics pipes and clusters, extensibility and reflectivity, flexibility. Follows Open Source (LGPL) principles, and runs on IRIX, Windows and Linux.

All scenegraphs are designed to render a scene. Most scene graph have nodes such as group, geometry, etc. About 80% geometry is common between most scene graphs. The 20% that is different is what OpenSG is so good at handling, this is primarily its extensibility, multi-thread safety and clustering capabilities. For tutorials on Using OpenSG

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