IDL 8.1 was released last week during VISualize. This caught me a bit by surprise, but I will do a few posts on 8.1 features in the coming weeks. Here are the basic features:

  1. IDLffVideoWrite class for high-quality video output in either mp4 or avi files. This uses the FFmpeg library.
  2. There are now keywords to set event handlers for specific types of events in a new graphic or WIDGET_WINDOW window.
  3. Added methods for new graphics programmatic API.
  4. Extended longitudes and high-resolution shorelines in MAP using GSHHS map database.
  5. New methods for List and Hash classes: ::isEmpty, ::count, and ::findValue (like WHERE).
  6. GRIB read and write programmatic API (containing 38 GRIB_* routines) for UNIX and Mac OS X only.
  7. KML/KMZ output options in new graphics MAP function.
  8. Workbench now comes with source control plugins for git, Subversion, CVS, and Perforce.

There are more features, so check the “What’s New” for more details.