PanoVRama: Open Multi-Projector Image Rendering
Written by Michael Larabel in Hardware on 29 June 2012 at 07:51 PM EDT. 3 Comments
If you happen to have about six projectors laying around, there's a new open-source project available that comes out of academia for panoramic multi-projector image rendering to have a panoramic visualization system for things like flight simulators and Google Earth.

Nenad Mikša, a long-time Phoronix reader from Croatia, developed PanoVRama along with other classmates for their thesis at University of Zagreb.

As said in this Phoronix Forums posting, "So, what is PanoVRama? PanoVRama is a tiled multiprojector panoramic visualization system developed on Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computing, University of Zagreb. It consists of 6 projectors that are projecting onto a circular canvas, thus providing a 360 degree panoramic visualization. At first, it was only capable of showing panoramic images and videos, but now it also supports Google Earth/Google Street View navigation and flight simulation using Flight Gear simulator."

In that posting he also shares how PanoVRama works. This implementation actually uses X composite with GL_EXT_texture_from_pixmap support so that this panoramic visualization system effectively acts as a giant compositor while transforming the display into a giant panoramic image. This system is also distributed in that there are three computers with two projectors being powered by each system.

For those that just care what PanoVRama can produce rather than the technical details, see their interesting demo video below. They also employ a Nintento Wiimote for handling controls from this system running Arch Linux.

The code that makes this multi-projector image rendering system work can be downloaded from SourceForge and additional technical details in the aforementioned forum thread.

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Michael Larabel is the principal author of and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via

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