Common Usage

How do I place a 3D model on the map?

The osgEarth::GeoTransform class inherits from osg::Transform and will convert map coordinates into OSG world coordinates for you. Place an object at a geospatial position like this:

GeoTransform* xform = new GeoTransform();
GeoPoint point(srs, -121.0, 34.0, 1000.0);

If you want your object to automatically clamp to the terrain surface, assign a terrain and leave off the altitude:

GeoTransform* xform = new GeoTransform();
GeoPoint point(srs, -121.0, 34.0);

I loaded a model, but it has no texture/lighting/etc. in osgEarth. Why?

Everything under an osgEarth scene graph is rendered with shaders. So, when using your own models (or creating geometry by hand) you need to create shader components in order for them to render properly.

osgEarth has a built-in shader generator for this purpose. Run the shader generator on your node like so:

osgEarth::Registry::shaderGenerator().run( myNode );

After that, your node will contain shader snippets that allows osgEarth to render it properly and for it to work with other osgEarth features like sky lighting.

Lines or Annotations (FeatureNode, etc.) are not rendering. Why?

Lines render using a shader that requires some initial state to be set. You can apply this state to your top-level camera (or anywhere else above the geometry) like so:

#include <osgEarth/GLUtils>

For Annotations (FeatureNodes, PlaceNodes, etc.) best practice is to place an Annotation node as a descendant of the MapNode in your scene graph. You can also add them to an AnnotationLayer and add that layer to the Map.

Annotations need access to the MapNode in order to render properly. If you cannot place them under the MapNode, you will have to manually install a few things to make them work:

#include <osgEarth/CullingUtils>
#include <osgEarth/GLUtils>

// Manully assign the MapNode to your annotation

// In some group above the annotation, install this callback
group->addCullCallback(new InstallViewportSizeUniform());

// In some group above the annotation, set the GL defaults

Again: MapNode does all this automatically so this is only necessary if you do not place your annotations as descendants of the MapNode.

Community and Support

What is the best practice for using GitHub?

The best way to work with the osgEarth repository is to make your own clone on GitHub and to work from that clone. Why not work directly against the main repository? You can, but if you need to make changes, bug fixes, etc., you will need your own clone in order to issue Pull Requests.

  1. Create your own GitHub account and log in.
  2. Clone the osgEarth repo.
  3. Work from your clone. Sync it to the main repository periodically to get the latest changes.

How do I submit changes to osgEarth?

We accept contributions and bug fixes through GitHub’s Pull Request mechanism.

First you need your own GitHub account and a fork of the repo (see above). Next, follow these guidelines:

  1. Create a branch in which to make your changes.
  2. Make the change.
  3. Issue a pull request against the main osgEarth repository.
  4. We will review the PR for inclusion.

If we decide NOT to include your submission, you can still keep it in your cloned repository and use it yourself. Doing so maintains compliance with the osgEarth license since your changes are still available to the public - even if they are not merged into the master repository.

Can I hire someone to help me with osgEarth?

Of course! We at Pelican Mapping are in the business of supporting users of the osgEarth SDK and are available for contracting, training, and integration services. The easiest way to get in touch with us is through our web site contact form.

Pelican also offers a Priority Support package that is a good fit for companies that prefer to do most of their development in-house.


Can I use osgEarth in a commercial product?

Yes. The license permits use in a commercial product. The only requirement is that any changes you make to the actual osgEarth library itself be made available under the same license as osgEarth. You do not need to make other parts of your application public.

Can I use osgEarth in an iOS app?

Yes. Apple’s policy requires only statically linked libraries. Technically, the LGPL does not support static linking, but we grant an exception in this case.