Sponsored by Caglow - Contact [mailto: ] for more information
A platform-independent planetarium targetting the more experienced end user.
Aciqra is a free planetarium with the goal of becoming a free alternative to proprietary programs like TheSky. Its goal is to become a tool to run on lightweight laptops for use in the field to be an alternative to sky charts to identify celestial objects in real life. The intention is NOT to become another Stellarium. If it was, then it wouldn't be here. It's focus is directed towards being as fast and as readable as possible while still maintaining a realistic feel to it so that it can be used outdoors just as easily as indoors. It is not intended to be for education as Stellarium is, but rather, is for astronomy, a field where free software has not appeared to have embedded itself yet.
How to get started
A project website has existed since 2008 for an old version of the project. Ignore that if you will as it's being phased out and has almost nothing to do with current development. The website is here: http://aciqra.caglow.com Announcements will be posted there as new information comes out. Post a message on the Aciqra II forum for information.
A subversion repository has been set up here: http://aciqra.svn.sf.net/svnroot/aciqra The code is written using the I programming language, a language based off of Lua with a completely different syntax for quicker coding. It's an interpreted language so you'll need it to run. I trunk is needed to run what is currently of Aciqra. A Makefile system is available but is incomplete and only works for the core. To build I, you will need any version of GCC (the code is mostly ANSI C) and Code::Blocks 8.02: http://www.codeblocks.org/ If you cannot get it to build, let me know and I will send over some binaries.
With all that out-of-the-way, it's time to get on with the code.
The project uses OpenGL and is limited to almost no use of the GLU library. If someone is willing to help bind the entire GLU library into the I language, then that will work too. But either way, you OpenGL experience is necessary for programming. Aciqra also uses basic function of FreeGLUT; pretty much just those found in ordinary GLUT plus a few extras. FreeGLUT is used because it is free software. Currently being worked on is splitting the loaded stars into categories based on their locations in the sky. This is so to improve rendering speed when all is done. The GUI has already been made and likely will experience improvements later on but that isn't high priority. As long as it's usable, we're good to go.
Documentation is not yet needed as the project is still in its infancy (this version anyways).
Current estimated completion date is December, 2011. This is NOT a deadline, just a date which I guessed would be the date if no help is received.