After the IDL 8.0 overview at the IDL User Group meeting last week, Bill Okubo also asked for a list of features IDL users needed. I think I have all the ideas people gave (along with some pertinent links to proof-of-concept ideas and background material):

  1. better map projections
  2. geo-browser export (i.e., to Google Earth, etc.) (exporting from ENVI, discussion of doing it in IDL)
  3. stereo display (simple anaglyph system, I also have code for using Alioscopy’s autostereoscopic monitors from IDL object graphics which I have not published yet)
  4. a better widget system (a way to make IDL bindings for Qt?)
  5. easier runtime distribution (MAKE_RT über-installation)
  6. better handling of large data sets
  7. better support for databases
  8. integration of GPU and parallel processing (Tech-X does both GPU and parallel processing in IDL)
  9. OPeNDAP support (I have something coming soon for this!)
  10. easier interface to gridding data
  11. ability to read Matlab “.sav” file
  12. better volume rendering

Thoughts? Did we miss something crucial?

Full disclosure: I work for Tech-X Corporation and have worked on GPULib, FastDL, and the Remote Data Toolkit.