please make hello world simpler.

I tried out Cesium demo's and was impressed enough to download it and give it a go. I eagerly went to the quick start instructions and was immediately dismayed. Cesium is 100% javascript. Why was I being told to 'build' the project? The last thing I am worried about when trying out new javascript libraries is minifying the code. That's something to worry about when I am ready to deploy. Just point me to the required libraries. Ok, so I followed the instructions and tried to build the project. Fortunately I have java installed on my machine, however, I ran into a problem with ant versions since my linux box has an earlier version of ant and even though I thought I was running the version in ./Tools it was running the older version. It took a while for me to figure out that I needed to set ant_home to the version in ./Tools. I mention this just to point out that you have required your users to have java installed and have ant configured properly, all to do something that they should not be worrying about while they are evaluating your technology.

I followed all of the quick start instructions and managed to compile and run the sample applications, but I can't figure out how to get a globe to run in my own page running on my apache server. This should really be part of the quick start instructions. I don't think a user has started until they are at a point where they can modify the provided code to meet their own needs. Running the sandbox demos on localhost was not very useful, since I could already do that on your server. In all, I found the quick start instructions are pretty useless.

Since then, I've been trying for a couple of hours to get the simplest globe to work with very limited success. I can see the globe, but navigation does not work. I get no javascript errors, so I really have little information with which to troubleshoot.

I do this stuff all of the time, so I don't think it is a matter of my skill at following instructions. The instructions for setting up a simple globe on my own site are either missing from the website/wiki or they are very well hidden.

Cesium looks like an excellent application. Please reduce the barrier to entry and provide a simple - stand alone - example.

Thank you.


Good comments here. This is something we’re actively working on, in particular I’ll mention my branch “simple-widget” where the Hello World sample is basically just a line of code to instantiate the widget with the default settings. This branch needs more work before it can be pull-requested to master, and of course Cesium itself is still in Beta so things can break.

The build process will always be required for Cesium developers, but Cesium users will eventually be able to download a pre-built version from the website (which itself is in the middle of a redesign these days). This isn’t unusual for JavaScript projects of this size, for example Three.js and the ACE editor both have source spread across many modules that are compiled by a build script, but of course the pre-built versions are the most prominent downloads of those projects. Cesium’s build does things like converting GLSL shader files into JavaScript strings in files, and it automatically generates a list of all of Cesium’s modules for inclusion in the main Cesium object. It makes an un-minified, combined version for easier debugging, as well as the minified version.

Since other projects make a built version available for direct download, I think this is something we should do at least once per release for Cesium. There will be some web worker scripts and graphic assets that will need to go along with that download, and we’re still wrangling over how exactly to tell the pre-built Cesium.js file where its assets and workers are (global variable vs. script tag data-attribute, plus supporting code).

The above could take weeks or months, so don’t wait around. Instead, take a look at Chrome DevTools’ Network panel when you bring up this URL:


Bing imagery is turned off in this demo, so there are only few network requests (I count nine). In particular, the combined un-minified Cesium is mixed in there:


There are also some assets like the single-tile day imagery, the night texture map, and some web worker scripts. If you download these files to your own site with the same relative folder structure, you should get a working globe with mouse controls. That should get you off the ground I think.