VirtualEarthKit FAQ

What is VirtualEarthKit?

VirtualEarthKit is a framework for developers to connect to Virtual Earth services. Virtual Earth provides map imagery, geocoding and reverse geocoding, yellow pages lookup, and turn by turn route guidence. Implementation of yellow page lookup and turn by turn route guidence is pending. We have also written an OpenGL ES map view that supports panning and zooming. This will be added to VirtualEarthKit after some cleanup of the source. Be advised, turn by turn route guidence is presently not permitted by the iPhone SDK agreement. As such, route guidence has been given the lowest priority for implementation in VirtualEarthKit.

What do I need to get started with VirtualEathKit?

What is the licensing for the VirtualEarthKit framework?

VirtualEarthKit is freely available along with it's source code under the BSD license. We encourage developers to submit any changes back to the project so we can make the Macintosh the best platform for Virtual Earth development.

What platforms are supported?

Mac OS 10.5 and the iPhone. We are not actively porting to other to other platforms such as Android. In the case of Android, Android only allows for development using the Java programming language, which means none of the code written for this project would work on Android. An Android port would require forking the project, something we are not interested in at this time. It is preferable to create a first class experience on the iPhone.

What is the relation of this project with Microsoft?

We maintain an active dialog with Microsoft on VirtualEarthKit. VirtualEarthKit is a completely independent project, and Microsoft does not handle support for VirtualEarthKit. Unless there is a server side issue or an account issue, you should handle your support needs through the VirtualEarthKit project.

What is the best way to get support for VirtualEarthKit?

The VirtualEarthKit mailing list.

How do I add VirtualEarthKit to an iPhone project?

Currently, you must manually add the source to VirtualEarthKit to your project. We are working on a way to get VirtualEarthKit to contain both an iPhone and Mac target, but have had no such luck so far. Contributions are welcome in this area.

Does VirtualEarthKit support the open iPhone toolchain?

The VirtualEarthKit project does not explicitly support jailbroken phones, however given that it compiles fine on the official SDK, it is likely to support the open toolchain.

Does VirtualEarthKit run on the Windows or Linux platforms?

Microsoft makes an official SDK for Windows, available here. We have not tested VirtualEarthKit in environments such as Cocotron or GNUStep that allow Cocoa application development on Windows or Linux. Cocotron likely will not run VirtualEarthKit at this point, given that VirtualEarthKit is Objective C 2.0, and has dependencies on the Address Book Framework.