Tepee3D

As an Epitech student, a part of our fourth and fifth years has to be spent developing an innovative idea. Along with some other students we gathered around thinking about various project ideas. At the time we were developing the Tepee project on our spare time. Tepee was a multi-platform application developed with Qt and QtQuick that aimed at providing users a same interface across various devices. With that interface, users were able to post notes, add appointments in a calendar, post and retrieve files from an ftp server, save and visit bookmarks with the integrated web browsers… In addition, all those data could be synced so that if you had added a new bookmark on your phone, you would also have it on your desktop the next time you used the application.

So there we sat, thinking about ideas… We came to talk about the Matrix movie and more precisely about the moment where a huge load of guns is loaded into an empty white room. That triggered the idea between Tepee3D.

The basic concept is that a user can create a given number of rooms. In each of these rooms, widgets can be added to provide a given set of features and make each room different. Ideally each room has a purpose, one could be dedicated to entertainment while another would provide weather services. In the end, the user is free to fill his rooms the way he wants to.

To make the project grow, providing external developers a way to build custom widgets had to be thought of. Offering an API, tutorials and documentation is in itself the most important part of the project and maybe the most interesting to develop.

Next, we had to think about the technologies we were going to use to develop such an idea. Keeping the cross platform aspect of the project was also important to us. The use of OpenGL for 3D graphics was mandatory as it is the easiest way to target various devices with the same code behind it. Eventually we heard about the Qt3D module of the Qt framework which we already knew. Being able to develop quickly 3D graphics by using Qml was a real strong point and the idea of being able to incorporate a whole QtQuick application as a texture of a 3D model offered an opportunity for great widgets. Qt 5.0 had not been released yet but it sure promised a lot of new features.

A year after the start, we’ve achieved some impressive work, encountered a few hiccups but the whole project is coming together nicely and we hope we’ll be able to release an alpha version some time at the beginning of the summer.

In my following posts, I’ll try to present the tools we use, the solutions to problems we faced and explain some decisions we took.

In the meantime, if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to comment.

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