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       libraries - Coin use of 3rd party libraries.  Coin may use a wide
       variety of 3rd party libraries, directly and indirectly, depending on
       how the Coin build was configured. This document tries to summarize the
       situation. Some of the libraries that are a standard part of an
       operating system are ignored here.

       This document expects that the reader is familiar with library build
       processes and has knowledge of various concepts such as ’configure-
       time’, ’linktime’, and ’runtime’ related to library builds and

       First of all, Coin requires OpenGL. Depending on the OpenGL version,
       features in Coin are turned on and off. If a feature Coin is supposed
       to suport does not seem to produce any result, make sure to check that
       the underlying OpenGL version does support that feature. OpenGL is
       linked into Coin both at linktime and runtime. Features added to OpenGL
       later than the oldest version of OpenGL we support in Coin are always
       tried linked up at runtime, and failure to do so will disable features
       in Coin or cause alternate implementations of features to be used

       OpenGL is accompanied with a set of auxiliary libraries we also use.
       These are libraries like GLext, GLU (for NURBS tessellation and texture
       mipmaping amongst others), CgGL (for shaders that use Cg (we recommend
       using GLSL instead BTW)). Of these libraries, CgGL is loaded at runtime
       if needed, while the others are linked with Coin at linktime.

       Some platforms have GLU libraries that don’t behave properly in certain
       respects, and some Coin users have particular needs wrt Coin’s use of
       GLU. For these users, we (at Kongsberg Oil & Gas Technologies) have
       created a fork og GLU that we have named SuperGLU that we have tweaked
       in certain ways. This library can be checked out into the Coin source
       code directory, which will be detected at configure-time and linked
       statically into Coin and used instead of the GLU libraries on the host

       In addition to these libraries, Coin will use AGL on Mac OS X, WGL on
       MS Windows, and GLX on X Windows Systems for offscreen rendering

       We now move on to libraries that are not related to OpenGL.

       Coin uses libz (aka zlib) and libbzip2 to read and/or write files
       compressed with either of those compression techniques. Both libraries
       can ble linked with Coin at linktime or loaded at runtime, and this is
       controlled at configure-time. They can also be disabled if compressed
       file input/output is not wanted. The libz library is likely to be
       pulled in as a dependency from other libraries as well, especially
       graphics libraries.

       For font support, Coin uses Fontconfig or FreeType in addition to
       native platform APIs for font reading. Freetype can be loaded at
       runtime instead of linked at linktime if desired, but FreeType is only
       used if Fontconfig is not found at configure-time anyway, unless the
       library builder overrides this behaviour.

       For JavaScript support in VRML97, Coin uses SpiderMonkey. SpiderMonkey
       can also be loaded at runtime instead of linked at linktime.

       For sound support in VRML97, Coin uses OpenAL. OpenAL is loaded at
       runtime or linked at linktime. BTW, some versions of the OpenAL library
       delivered with installers from Creative on MS Windows have been known
       to crash/freeze Coin-applications when loaded, so if you experience
       something like that, that’s one thing to investigate.

       For threading support, Coin uses POSIX threads (pthread library) or the
       native Win32 API on MS Windows. You can use pthread on MS Windows as
       well instead of the native threads by setting this at configure-time.

       We now come to a special class of libraries that has been directly
       integrated into the Coin source code, thereby not requiring the
       libraries to be installed on the system beforehand for Coin to build or

       Coin makes use of certain utilities like smart-pointers from Boost. The
       boost headers can be found under include/ in the Coin source code
       directory. No boost types are exposed in the Coin API, nor will they
       ever be. They are completely hidden, viewed from the outside of Coin.
       All boost types used in Coin are completely inlined in the boost
       headers and therefore do not require a link library to pull their
       implementation from at runtime.

       For XML reading, Coin uses the expat library, which has also been
       integrated directly into Coin, so also here there are no extra linktime
       or runtime dependencies to other libraries. The expat API is not
       exposed in the Coin API, it is hidden, but Coin provides its own XML
       DOM API that is a wrapper over the expat engine.

       The last thing to mention here is hardly a library, but we mention it
       anyway. Coin uses flex and bison to generate some parsers (one for the
       STL 3D model file format, and another one for parsing the calculator
       language in the SoCalculator engine). This is code that has been
       generated by 3rd party parser generators and integrated into Coin. The
       generated code is distributed with the source code, so neither flex nor
       bison is needed to build Coin.

       And last but definitely not least, Coin uses simage...

The simage library

       Coin uses a library called simage, which is a 1st part library since we
       have written it ourselves. Simage is a thin wrapper library over a huge
       set of graphics and audio libraries, to provide Coin with a unified API
       for loading images (textures), audio, and animations, regardless of
       which image file format it is stored as. The simage library can in
       other words pull in another set of 3rd party libraries. All 3rd party
       libraries to simage are optional. Simage is loaded at runtime or (if
       specified) linked at linktime with Coin.

       Simage can use QImage from Qt to add support for the file formats Qt

       Simage can use GDI+ (gdiplus) under MS Windows to add support for the
       file formats supported by GDI+.

       Simage can use QuickTime under Mac OS X to add support for the file
       formats QuickTime supports.

       Simage can use libungif or giflib for GIF file support.

       Simage can use libjpeg for JPEG file support.

       Simage can use libpng for PNG file support. This will also require that
       zlib is used.

       Simage can use libtiff for TIFF file support.

       Simage can use JASPER support for JPEG 2000 file support.

       Simage can use mpeg2enc for MPEG2 encoding.

       Simage can use vfw (Video for Windows) for AVI video encoding.

       Simage can use libogg, libvorbis and libvorbisfile for Ogg Vorbis
       support. This is for VRML97 sound support in Coin.

       Simage can use libsndfile for VRML97 sound support in Coin.

       Simage can use libguile for a Guile (Scheme) binding for the Simage
       library API.