Major Version History

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Altus Mapping Engine History

You can think of Altus as having 3 distinct generations of evolution:

  • Altus Legacy
  • Altus 1.x
  • Altus 2.x

Altus Legacy

This is the original non-ARC iOS version which shipped in various products in 2013. We maintain a branch of this version for enterprise customers and 'just in case' someone ever needs to support the iPad 1 ever again. After we shipped this version we began porting the core to Android which marks a bit of a fork in the API and core. This introduced our first map formats and our original internal projection which we call our 'old projection'. For the sake of clarity we'll call this release our 'Legacy' release. It was fast and functional, but rough around the edges and only supported iOS. Some versions of the engine had several external library dependencies that have since been removed (i.e. libjpegturbo) to make the engine more portable.

Internally we stopped working on this branch except for minor bug fixes for select customers. The reference application, Mapp, that we built for this version, however, is extremely 'deep' from a technical stand-point and is a wealth of knowledge on how to leverage Altus. As we move forward, we will move most of that depth to the new reference application, AltusDemo, but some of the more esoteric things will be left behind (i.e. the "FastMarker" API, which has since been replaced a better system). On github this entire release, samples, and reference applications have been move to the deprecated folder. Custom content for this engine could be made with metool and/or metoolinjectmarkers.

Altus 1.x

This was our first portable version that worked on OS X, Anroid, Windows, and finally ARC on iOS as well as ARM 64-bit on iOS. It is still using our original projection and supports the formats from the initial iOS release. This is what is powering most of the shipping applications on Altus today on iOS and is probably the most tested and stable release available. Custom content for this engine can be made with metool and/or metoolinjectmarkers and can also be made with the new Altus Server components if you use the correct version. Altus Server components can be compiled to support either the projection in this release, or the projection in Altus 2.0.

Altus 2.x

This is the release we are prepping for public consumption now. It has a more efficient projection system, is more CPU efficient, and uses a new map format. It has what we call our 'new' projection. Custom content for this engine can be created with the Altus Server components. metool cannot create content for this projection. This is the release where we are doing new work related to new kinds of visualization like four dimensional weather, new types of terrain and lighting, supporting new kinds of hardware that are coming out, and consuming more data types from other sources (like GeoJSON, protocol-buffer vector tiles, etc.). This version will still run on all the same hardware as Altus 1.0 and when we release it we will encourage customers to transition to this engine. But some newer features will only work on more recent hardware.

Content Creation Tools

In addition to the engine we have also released a variety of tools for content creation. These include:

  • metool
  • metoolinjectmarkers
  • MapShop
  • MapShopR2

NOTE: AltusServer, which has not yet been released, will replace metool.

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