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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

  1. How do I run GeoVRML scenes?

    GeoVRML content will play in many of the standard VRML browser plug-ins. Before browsing GeoVRML content, however, you should install the GeoVRML Run-time environment on your computer.

  2. What is the GeoVRML Runtime Environment?

    This is simply a number of Java classes that are needed for the standard GeoVRML implementation. Under Windows, there is an installer program that will put these in the right place, update your CLASSPATH variable, and install a copy of the GeoVRML specification on your system. It will also create a menu in the Program start menu.

  3. What VRML browsers will play GeoVRML content?

    GeoVRML is known to work with the CosmoPlayer, Cortona, and the Xj3D VRML browsers. It may work on other browsers too. The Cortona browser also provides a native implementation of the GeoVRML nodes. See the download page for links to these browsers.

  4. What products support GeoVRML?

    A number of converters and products have added support for GeoVRML. These include the following.

    • ESRI's ArcInfo/ArcView 8.1 (3D Analyst extension)
    • Bashir's Research ShapeViz
    • DEM2GeoEG converter for USGS DEMs
    • Tile Set Manager API (tsmApi) library
    • SRI International's Web Map Server (WMS)

  5. What are the different GeoVRML versions?

    GeoVRML 1.0 was the initial version (May 2000). This specification then went through an ISO standardization process to become part of an amendment to VRML97. These changes were then encapsulated in GeoVRML 1.1 (July 2002), which is the current release. The next version of GeoVRML is being called V2.0 but is still under development.

  6. What is the difference between GeoVRML 1.0 and 1.1?

    See Section 1.4 of the GeoVRML 1.1 Specification for a list of all changes between 1.0 and 1.1.

  7. What about GeoVRML and ISO?

    The GeoVRML nodes have been added to an Amendment to the VRML97 ISO specification (ISO/IEC 14772-1:1997). They form an optional component of this ISO specification. ISO is the International Organization for Standardization.

  8. How can I write portable GeoVRML content?

    As with VRML, it is possible to write content that only works on a particular browser. To ensure cross-browser compatibility, you should reference the GeoVRML EXTERNPROTOs with the following form. You should also use only absolute URLs in GeoInline and GeoLOD nodes.

    EXTERNPROTO GeoLocation [ ... ] [
    "http://www.geovrml.org/1.1/protos/GeoLocation.wrl" ]

  9. How do I use the Cortona navtive implementation?

    The Cortona VRML browser from ParallelGraphics has implemented the GeoVRML nodes natively. However, in order to use these native nodes, you must currently use PG's versions of the GeoVRML PROTOs, which may not work in other browsers. These PROTOs can be found at http://www.geovrml.org/1.0/protos-cortona/.

  10. What is GeoTransform?

    GeoTransform is a Java package that provides the geographic coordinate conversion routines for GeoVRML. It is a partial port of the SEDRIS Conversions C API.

  11. How can I get my GeoVRML content linked from GeoVRML.org?

    Easy - just ask! Send a message to the mailing list telling us a bit about your content and a URL and a link will be added to the example content page on geovrml.org.

  12. There's a bug in GeoVRML. How do I fix it?

    The GeoVRML source code is available for you to download and modify. If you fix any bugs or add any new functionality, please e-mail the list with the location of your updated version so that is can be merged in the main line.

Martin Reddy / Lee Iverson


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