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KnightWRX
Aug 5, 2012, 03:37 PM
Hi gang!

I need a good reference on programming using Apple's GLKit from iOS 5. Not just quick and dirty tutorials about using SkyBox and effects and something better than Apple's "Class reference" and generalistic programming guide that fails to provide much examples aside from "Plow through this huge project to find some tidbits".

I've found 2 books on the subject, one release in December 2011 that doesn't seem to great, namely Building iOS 5 Games: Develop and Design (http://my.safaribooksonline.com/book/programming/game-programming/9780132790451/part-idot-using-glkit-in-ios-5/part01). The other has yet to ship, its shipping date slipping every few weeks, it's Learning OpenGL ES for iOS: A Hands-On Guide to Modern 3D Graphics Programming (http://my.safaribooksonline.com/book/animation-and-3d/9780132478939)

Now, have any of you worked with these books (the second one has had preview copy available on Safari Books for a while, I just don't have a subscription to the site) and could offer insight on them ? Am I mistaken in thinking the first one is too simplistic ?

Or do any of you have good references for the GLK* classes that they could provide, something to get a Skybox, a few models and a flat terrain loaded with a camera running through it, all texture mapped ?

Thanks for any help!



ArtOfWarfare
Aug 5, 2012, 03:49 PM
Why GLKit?

Why not just Ogre 3D?

It's a free, cross platform object-oreinted rendering engine that makes the tasks you listed trivial. They have about 40 tutorials ranging from beginners to experts and the forums seem pretty good.

I spent over a year trying to learn GLKit and wasn't able to get past texturing a model. With Ogre, I was able to do skeletal animations on a textured model within a month. (If you asked me to do it again today, it'd take under a week.)

http://www.ogre3d.org/tikiwiki/tiki-index.php?page=Home

KnightWRX
Aug 5, 2012, 04:05 PM
Why GLKit?

Why not just Ogre 3D?

Because it :

makes the tasks you listed trivial.

Which is the opposite of what I'm seeking in using straight GLKit/OpenGL ES 2.0. If the goal were to write a game, then I'd use an engine. The goal is writing an engine.

ArtOfWarfare
Aug 5, 2012, 04:38 PM
Which is the opposite of what I'm seeking in using straight GLKit/OpenGL ES 2.0. If the goal were to write a game, then I'd use an engine. The goal is writing an engine.

And the point is...?

Engines have been done. The work is over. They all support textures, models, planes and shadows. Most support crap tons of other stuff. What more do you want? Why not add onto Ogre instead?

KnightWRX
Aug 5, 2012, 04:55 PM
And the point is...?

Engines have been done. The work is over. They all support textures, models, planes and shadows. Most support crap tons of other stuff. What more do you want? Why not add onto Ogre instead?

Don't derail my thread please. If you don't get my point, it's ok. I don't expect you to understand what I do with my spare time and where I get my kicks from. Do you have any insight in the 2 books I listed or any other GLKit references I can use that are more complete than Apple's reference documentation ?

Otherwise, I'll probably just acquire both books and go with Apple's stuff and take some time to figure out. I just wanted to know before I ponied up dollars if there was some better stuff out there.

KnightWRX
Aug 17, 2012, 12:45 PM
I finally ended getting a paper copy of Learning OpenGL ES for iOS: A Hands-On Guide to Modern 3D Graphics Programming (http://my.safaribooksonline.com/book/animation-and-3d/9780132478939) and I've got to say, it's a really tight book. 300 or so pages, so no lengthy, boring chapters that don't seem to go anywhere. It's also a great reference to actually implementing GLKit classes into a working project (BaseEffects + using GLKit to get a simple OpenGL ES 2.0 application going).

However in the later chapters, like some other books, the author uses some pre-made code to implement chapter examples since by that point, the topics are more advance and complex. When discussing terrain rendering, he uses 3-4 classes that are quite big, but never actually explains them, pointing to an earlier chapter that only brushes the surface of dynamic mesh manipulations. You're left to figure out the actual code to modify vertex buffers on your own from the code examples.

Still, it beats hands down the GLKit documentation Apple gives which is nothing more than a reference. Don't get me started on their SceneKit stuff for Mountain Lion... ugh... I ended up writing custom plug-ins for Blender instead of trying to use SceneKit for a simple collada converter.