Marble 1.0.0 now available in Maemo extras

Categories: KDE, Maemo
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Comments: 6 Comments
Published on: February 4, 2011

Version 1.0.0 of our mobile Virtual Globe comes with an improved user interface, is significantly faster and brings a lot of new navigation features to your Nokia N900. It is the first version available in the Maemo extras repository. This means that you can install it directly from the application manager of your N900.

“Find your way and explore the world with Marble” is the tagline that decorates the Marble 1.0 release. “Marble is a Virtual Globe with advanced routing capabilities. Use it as your personal navigation device to guide you to any destination in the world. Download maps from a variety of themes and explore the surroundings. Record your trip and share it with your friends.“, our package description continues. Let’s look into that in detail.

Online and Offline Routing

When an Internet connection is available, Marble can retrieve routes from OpenRouteService (Europe) and Yours (Worldwide). An arbitrary number of via-points is supported. Furthermore routing profiles can be created that define which routing backends are run with which configuration. The default configuration sets up motorcar routing (fastest and shortest) as well as bike and pedestrian routing.

Additionally you can calculate routes directly on the N900 without the need for an Internet connection using the Monav backend.

Offline routing requires additional country maps which can be downloaded conveniently from within Marble.

See this tutorial for further instructions.

GPS Tracking and Route Guidance Mode

The internal GPS of the N900 is used to retrieve your current location. The track is shown in the map (red line) and can be saved for further analysis in other programs.

In route guidance mode, driving instructions are announced in front of turn points. The map follows you as you move; Marble adjusts the zoom value automatically according to your speed.

Please see the GPS Tracking and the Guidance Mode tutorials for more information.

Themable Maps in Different Projections

A wide variety of map themes is supported, each consisting of one or more layers. The interactive legend can be used to adjust the current map theme to your liking.


Note that not all map themes can be shipped due to legal reasons. Google Maps or Ovi Maps themes are therefore not shipped, for example.

And More…

Translations for more than 40 languages are included. Compared to Marble 0.10, the first version available for the N900, Marble 1.0 is significantly faster. The OpenStreetMap theme in Mercator projection (default settings) for example renders more than ten times faster thanks to various optimizations. The hard to operate tab widget on the left is now replaced by dialogs. We plan to continue to improve the user interface, speed and memory consumption in future versions.

If you’re interested in Marble on the N900, don’t miss our KDE Userbase tutorials. You can install Marble directly from Maemo’s application manager. Please give feedback on the Marble download page, our mailing list or in the #marble IRC channel on Freenode.

Please note: Some of the screenshots above show map themes from the marble-maps package. This package is still in extras-testing, waiting for at least three more testers before it can be promoted to extras. The same holds for monav-routing-daemon, the offline routing backend. If you can spare some time, please become a tester and vote for marble-maps 1.0.0 and monav-routing-daemon. Thanks :-)

6 Comments
  1. Jos says:

    Pretty screenshots!

    Just installed it on N900 for getting around in Brussels. I’m downloading the offline map now. The dialog about the zoom level is not so intuitive though. Instead of saying what the zoom level is, saying how long a pixel is approximately would be helpful.

    Is there a search dialog in there? Can i search e.g. for streets in offline mode?

  2. Sepp says:

    Hey, which map theme is used in the screenshot showing Baden-Baden? How do I activate it in the desktop version of Marble?

  3. jedibeeftrix says:

    awesome work, but slight probem.

    online routing seems to freeze the app.

  4. Dennis Nienhüser says:

    @Jos: There’s a bug report for the non-intuitive zoom level selection, https://bugs.kde.org/show_bug.cgi?id=259657. Ideally I’d like to have some kind of (optional) preview for zoom levels.
    You can use the routing dialog to search for streets. Currently that’s limited to online searches, but I hope to find time to work on an offline address search as well.

    @Sepp: That’s the Osmarender theme. You can install it in the KDE version using File => Download Maps. Needs KDE 4.5 or later (Marble 0.10, 1.0 or later). Once installed, open the Legend (left tab) and click on “Hillshading” to enable that layer.

    @jedibeeftrix: Can you describe the problem in more detail, please? At which point does the application freeze? When the route is calculated? How does it behave at that point – is input (e.g. clicking, panning) still processed?

  5. Eye of Siva says:

    Thank you very much for this update. I must commend you for this software, which will replace the (hopelessly unworkable) default Maps on my N900. With those previously commenting, I will say that some of the icons are not obvious and of course on a mobile device, tool tips are not possible. Still this is a tremendous improvement over previous versions (I have been trying Marble on N900 since the first version came out).
    I must also thank you for the documentation effort. I think the userbase articles are well written. Perhaps a help link within the app that opens the userbase help page would be really useful. I have not dug deep enough to see if it is already there.
    Now I have said enough for the moment, I have to use it in real world applications in India before commenting further. I live in Bombay (Mumbai) and travel a lot across the country. This will also let me check out the maps and routing in other cities.

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