spheremap 1.0

Designed and developed by

Liang Wan
Tien-Tsin Wong
Chi-Sing Leung


Cubemap is a defacto standard for representing the surrounding environment (a spherical function) in many graphics applications. However, it does not evenly sample the environment. Different texel may span different solid angle (i.e. different importances or weights). Is there any parameterization of sphere that can sample environment more evenly?

In GDC2007, we introduced three spherical maps with equal or near-equal solid angle property. The source code here demonstrates the implementation of isocube and HEALPix spherical maps. If you are interested, just register below and download the code. The code is free of charge. Please refer to the file LICENSE.txt for license agreement.

System Requirement

Hardware: Pentium III or above, installed with nVidia GeforceFX series GPU (6800 or above)
OS: Windows 98/NT/2000/XP, with OpenGL

Installation Instruction

  1. Download spheremap 1.0
  2. Unzip the spheremap-1.0.zip
  3. Simply run spheremap.bat

Related Publications

  • " Sphere Maps with the Near-Equal Solid-Angle Property",
    L. Wan and T. T. Wong,
    in Game Developers Conference 2007 (GDC2007), San Francisco, California, USA, March 2007.

  • "Isocube: Exploiting the Cubemap Hardware",
    L. Wan, T. T. Wong and C. S. Leung,
    IEEE Transactions on Visualization and Computer Graphics, Vol. 13, No. 4, July/August 2007, pp. 720-731.

  • "Real-Time Environment Mapping with Equal Solid-Angle Spherical Quad-Map",
    T. T. Wong, L. Wan, C. S. Leung and P. M. Lam,
    Shader X4: Advanced Rendering Techniques, Edited by W. Engel, Charles River Media, 2006, pp. 221-233.

    Contact Person

    Tien-Tsin Wong (ttwong@acm.org)