HERE iOS SDK Developer's Guide

Adding and Interacting with LiveSight Content

This section covers how to add content to be displayed in LiveSight and how to handle user interactions with that content. The classes covered in this section are NMAARObject and NMAARIconObject. Additionally, several NMAARController methods and properties are used:

  • addObject:
  • removeObject:
  • pressObject:
  • unpressObject:
  • selectObject:
  • deselectObject
  • focusObject:
  • defocusObject
  • objectsAtPoint:
  • objectsInRect:

The following delegate protocols are also used alongside NMAARController:

  • NMAARControllerDelegate
  • NMAARControllerGestureDelegate

The LiveSight Object Model

A LiveSight object has several visual representations. The representation to be displayed is decided based on the state of the object. The object state which influences display is the Focus state. The Focus state is discussed in detail later.

While in the camera-enabled LiveSight view, there are two planes in which an object can be displayed, and the object representation is different in each. The planes are the "Front" plane and the "Back" plane. By default, objects which are geographically closer to the LiveSight center are displayed in the Front plane, and objects which are further away are displayed in the Back plane. Objects can be moved from one plane to the other using the vertical pan gesture.

Figure 1. Icons in the Camera View
Figure 2. Visualization of the Front and Back Planes

While in the Front plane, a LiveSight object is represented by both its icon as well as an information view (Info View) which extends out from the side of the icon. This information view is intended to act as a mechanism for displaying more detailed information about the object. In the Back plane, an object is initially represented by a single icon. It is possible to have an object in the Back plane display its Info View by putting it in focus. The icon for the Front plane and the Back plane can be different, and by default, the transition from one plane to the other is animated.

The NMAARObject Class

NMAARObject is the base class for all other objects which can be added to LiveSight in order to be displayed. It contains methods common to all LiveSight objects, enabling the following operations:

  • Set and retrieve the object's current position
  • Set and retrieve the object's front and back icons
  • Set and retrieve the object's front and back icon sizes
  • Set and retrieve the size, image, and extension state of the information view
Note: LiveSight only supports a single front icon size to be used at a time. Mixing objects with different front icon sizes results in icon distortion. The front icon size should be set via the setFrontPlaneIconSize: method in NMAARController.

The NMAARIconObject Class

The single child class to NMAARObject is the NMAARIconObject. NMAARIconObject represents the object model described in The LiveSight Object Model. Because it is the only concrete NMAARObject, most of its functions reside in NMAARObject.

Adding and Interacting with NMAARObject

Adding an NMAARObject to LiveSight is accomplished by way of the addObject: method in NMAARController:

NMAGeoCoordinates *objLocation =
  [NMAGeoCoordinates geoCoordinatesWithLatitude:49.276744 longitude:-123.112049];

NMAARIconObject *iconObject =
  [NMAARIconObject iconObjectWithIcon:[NMAImage imageWithUIImage:image1]
    infoImage:[NMAImage imageWithUIImage:image2]

[arController addObject:iconObject];

Similarly, NMAARObjects can be removed using the removeObject: method in NMAARController:

[arController removeObject:iconObject];

To facilitate interactivity with NMAARObjects, an NMAARControllerGestureDelegate can be registered by way of the gestureDelegate property in NMAARController. When a tap event occurs, the NMAARObject at the tap point can be found through the arController:shouldProcessTouchUpOnObjects:atPoint: method in NMAARControllerGestureDelegate. If you would like to provide custom handling for this gesture, you can implement the method as follows:

-(BOOL)arController:(NMAARController *)arController shouldProcessTouchUpAtPoint:(CGPoint)point
  //Get object closest to touch point if more than one
  NMAARObject* arObject =
    objects.count > 0 ? [objects objectAtIndex:0] : nil;

  if (arObject) {
    // perform some custom action, such as focus on the object

  return NO;

The NMAARObject can be put into focus by way of the focusObject: method. While in focus, an info pane for a NMAARObject which is in the back plane is displayed. Only one NMAARObject may have focus at a time. To defocus an NMAARObject, call focusObject: on another NMAARObject. You can also call the defocusObject method to defocus from the focused NMAARObject.

In addition to event driven NMAARObject retrieval, the objectsAtPoint: and objectsInRect: methods can be used to programmatically get NMAARObject at a screen location:

CGPoint point = {50, 50};
NSArray* objectsAtPoint = [arController objectsAtPoint:point];
CGRect viewRect = CGRectMake(50, 50, 25, 25);
NSArray* objectsInViewRect = [arController objectsInRect:viewRect);

Selecting NMAARObjects

After retrieving an NMAARObject, you can choose to select and unselect it by calling the selectObject: and deselectObject methods. Selecting an object causes an object's Info image to collapse, and the Back plane image to replace the Front plane image (if the object is in the Front plane).

Note: A single NMAARObject cannot be focused and selected simultaneously. However, it is possible to have one NMAARObject focused and another NMAARObject selected at the same time.

Reading the Current Pose

The NMAARController provides a convenient way to retrieve the current positional and directional (pose) values of your LiveSight session. By using the poseReading property, you can retrieve the NMAARPoseReading instance, which contains the following values:
  • Heading (Yaw)
  • Pitch
  • Roll
  • Location (Latitude, Longitude, Altitude)
  • Timestamp
Although these NMAARPoseReading values are derived from device sensors, they are interpolated and smoothed by the LiveSight engine.

3D Objects

LiveSight also supports two types of 3D objects: NMAARBillboardObject and NMAARMeshObject . Both of these classes are the derivatives of NMAARModelObject, which provides the ability to control basic properties such as object opacity, scale, and rotation. Because NMAARModelObject classes do not derive from the NMAARObject class, you cannot use them with some NMAARController methods such as focus or press. To add or remove an NMAARModelObject, use the addModelObject: and removeModelObject: methods in NMAARController.

An NMAARBillboardObject can be oriented in the Up state in two ways. In the FIXED orientsation mode, it may be "attached" to a surface by specifying the up and normal vectors using the upDirection and surfaceNormal properties. In the BILLBOARD orientation mode, a billboard is set to be always upright and facing the camera. An NMAARBillboardObject can be positioned in one of the following ways:

  • Anchored to a specific geo-location using the initWithGeoCoordinates:texture: initialization method, as well as the geoPosition property.
  • Anchored relative to the camera using the initWithLocalPosition:texture initialization method and localPosition property. The NMAVector3d represents the location of the center of the billboard in meters away from the camera.

An NMAARMeshObject represents a 3D object mesh. As with an NMAARBillboardObject, a mesh object may be anchored to a geo location or relative to the screen. You can control the orientation of the NMAARMeshObject by providing NMAGeoCoordinates that the object can point towards.

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