The Andes mountains covered in snow. The satellite images are rendered in 3D with custom textures.
Checkpoint in the distance as you explore Yosemite National Park
The Blue Ridge Parkway in NC. Fly around with the controller and when you're done visit the blue checkpoint to travel to the next tour stop.
Playing the immersive experience using the intuitive Xbox controls to fly around
The inspiration from this project came from our natural curiosity and desire to travel and see the world. However, being college students this would be prohibitively expensive. So instead, we wanted to do the next best thing. What if you could use an immersive map and controller to fly around and visit these places? By just typing in a location, you would be able to visit anywhere in the world and immerse yourself in the scenery. This simple concept formed the basis for our application.
What it does
Using this application, you are able to take a "grand tour" of the world. Set up your tour route and then launch the application and watch as you are taken to each of these locations. At each location, you are able to use the Xbox controller to fly around and explore, spending as much time as you want before moving onto the next location on your tour. Additionally, we pseudorandomly generate checkpoints on the map that you must find before moving to the next tour location. This element allows the application to also function as a game - one must explore the world learning about the culture and scenery while trying to find the checkpoint.
How I built it
This application was built leveraging the Esri map API. We use this API to dynamically generate not only the satellite imagery, but also 3D topographical information and textures to make it as lifelike as possible. We integrate this all seamlessly with JavaFX and another API to interface with the Xbox One Controller in order to create the most immersive experience possible
Challenges I ran into
It was difficult to get the Xbox One controller to function properly with the API we were using and integrate it inside of the Esri API to control the mapping software.
Accomplishments that I'm proud of
Creating a tangible, working application that meets all the goals that we set out at the beginning of this hackathon. Decompiling the source code of the APIs to figure out how they worked when the documentation failed us. Learning how to use the robust Esri map API to make a very cool final product.
What I learned
How to decompile source code. The intricacies of JavaFX and threading on Java. How to use the Esri map API. Creating a tangible deliverable in a short time frame.
What's next for The Grand Tour
Adding more overlays from the Esri API. Integrating the Esri API with another API that pulls points of interest based on location data. Dynamically adding points to the map based on parameters and adding sounds.