Dilettante Habits

Knowing nothing about everything


Abstract: Some helper methods for dealing with small animations (c++).

Topics: gfx, opengl, libraries

© Copyright Daniel Krajzewicz, 28.03.2017 22:00, cc by-nc-nd


example #1 example #2 example #3 example #4 example #5 example #6

AnoPlib - Animlets are not Particles library - provides a library for rendering small and fast animated effects using openGL.

AnoPlib is written in C++, other ports may follow. It is available under the GPL v3 (or later).

Why have I started this? I needed some way for thin, fast handling of small openGL-animations. Think of showing radio propagation in a traffic simulation with several hundreds or thousands of vehicles. It would be quite ugly to have code bloat here.

But what's the clue? Well, there are several particle system implementations. Particles are generated, fall or move, disappear after a while and are regenerated. All in all very nice. Though, what I needed, is something that controls a set of small animated objects; each animation may contain a movement, but this is not mandatory. Because a larger number of such animations shall be rendered, each animation should be rendered fast. The complete "system" must control animations.

And well, yes, because "animation" is somehow ambiguous, we name the child "animlet".

But let's revisit the requirements...

The second point is ok - it means you have some kind of a container ("the system") which handles something. But the first point - a custom implementation - makes me headaches. This means that you have to implement an animlet every time you want to generate something new. It does not make me happy, because there is not much left that would make a "library" - only the container...

Current State

I decided to release the current state, as it does what I needed first - rendering an emergency light, and a "wave propagation" - uah.

Version 0.1 includes:

Road Map

What I would like next - someday better to say - is to allow a rapid animlet prototyping. Basically nothing more than defining the initial position and the behaviour of animlets either via an own language or by embedding the thing into Doris or something similar. We'll see.

As I have what I need and future extensions would be just a hobby, you may try motivating me by writing a mail and/or spending some money.



Download the source code of the last version (0.1):

You may also download the Windows executable:


The library itself needs openGL, the example application additionally glut. Having both installed should be enough to compile on Linux, just type


in the folder you have extracted the library into.

For Windows, a MSVC9 project is given. You should be able to convert it to a newer version by simply opening it. Recently, I compiled it with no changes, but you may either have to set the environment variable "GLUT" to the path your glut includes and libs are located in or to include these paths in the project settings.


The doxygen-generated documentation can be found here: AnoPlib doxygen documentation.

Closing Remarks

Anything missing/wrong/outdated? Let me know.

Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported licence
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