Welcome to the CAVE Inventor Page

by Jon Goldman

Inventor Viewer for the CAVE available!

This Web page and Application is ongoing development. Check here once in a while for updates to the software.

App Name: cvview

Version: 1.35
Last time/date Updated: Thu Mar 23 17:17:29 CST 1995

Usage: cvview filename ...

where filename is an inventor file.

Example :

cvview /usr/share/data/models/X29.iv

Source Code:
A tar of the source and executable can be obtained from EVL's ftp site, or here:


A simplified version of the source, written by Jason Leigh, can be found in the file SIMPLE.C which is included in the tar of the source obtained above.

Problems? comments? gripes? contact me at, goldman@eecs.uic.edu

User's Guide

What you see
Version 1.32 of the viewer is pretty basic. It loads inventor files from the command line and displays them in the CAVE (or Simulator). There is a point light source at the center of the CAVE that illuminates at about 60% brightness.

The wand acts as a spot light with 100% brightness and about a 36 degree arc. When pointed at objects it illuminates them quite well.

User Interface
The user interface consists of a simple 1-item menu which appears at the lower right at about the position of the front wall of the CAVE. There are currently 4 menu items which are described below. Cycling through menu items is achieved via the right wand/mouse button.

Menu Actions:

To Navigate, point the wand in the direction of travel and push the middle button. The left button resets the navigation to the original starting point.

Use the left and middle buttons to cycle between datasets/files loaded on the command line. The left button removes a dataset. The right button restores a dataset.

Not Implemented yet.

To scale up the object(s) hold down the middle button.
To scale down the object(s) hold down the left button.
Holding down the left and middle button simultaneously will reset the scale factor to 1.0.

Cameras: All inventor camera objects should be removed from the inventor model file before attempting to view with cvview. The CAVE library sets up all projection transformations so if your model has any cameras specified you may end up with an empty view. To test for cameras use ivcat.

Example: ivcat mymodel.iv | grep -i camera

Not for the timid: Cameras can be removed from pre-existing Inventor files by using ivcat to write to a new file and then hand editing the new file and remove all camera instances. It is intended that future versions of the viewer will do this automatically.

Watch out for small inventor models. For example, you can create inventor models with showcase (by using the 3D Gizmo and saving out selected objects as inventor files). However, Showcase normalizes the objects' vertices to fall between 0-and-1.0, which makes the objects come out looking small in cvview. Use the scaling feature in cvview to scale up small objects.