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source code for glRotate

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hey, Im am currently using glRotate to rotate my cube, does ne know the code that glRotate uses to rotate an object. They way i see it is i have to rotate all 8 of my vectors for my cube. (or if ne one know how i can roate about the x or y axis using the vectors i have for my cube) thanks

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The glRotate function just multiplies the current matrix (which may be the projection, modelview or texture matrix) by a matrix that does the rotation. One way to create this matrix would be to use a quaterion to represent the rotation and then converting this into a matrix.

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Look up some stuff of matrix algebra and geometry. It'll explain how rotations are performed then give you matrices which will do them. Remember you need the 3-D versions of the matrices, not the 2-D versions.

Then you'd create the matrix (or matrices) that would apply your desired rotation, then lastly, multiply your points by these matrices to yield the final location.


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This will create a rotation matrix that rotates a degrees around axis (x,y,z).

void build_4x4_rotation_matrix(float x, float y, float z, float a, float *matrix) {

a = a * PI / 180.0; // convert to radians
float s = sin(a);
float c = cos(a);
float t = 1.0 - c;

float tx = t * x;
float ty = t * y;
float tz = t * z;

float sz = s * z;
float sy = s * y;
float sx = s * x;

matrix[0] = tx * x + c;
matrix[1] = tx * y + sz;
matrix[2] = tx * z - sy;
matrix[3] = 0;

matrix[4] = tx * y - sz;
matrix[5] = ty * y + c;
matrix[6] = ty * z + sx;
matrix[7] = 0;

matrix[8] = tx * z + sy;
matrix[9] = ty * z - sx;
matrix[10] = tz * z + c;
matrix[11] = 0;

matrix[12] = 0;
matrix[13] = 0;
matrix[14] = 0;
matrix[15] = 1;


this will transform a point by a matrix

void transform_3d_point_by_4x4_matrix(float *point, float *matrix, float *newPoint) {

for(int c = 0; c < 3; c++) {

float sum = 0;

for(int r = 0; r < 3; r++) sum += (point[r] * matrix[r * 4 + c]);

sum += matrix[r * 4 + c];

newPoint[c] = sum;



For your specific case this probably isn't the fastest way to rotate your cube (you don't actually need a 4x4 matrix for that). It's just a cut and past of a few functions from my math header.

I tend to only use quats for animation and other things where their properties are most useful. For general transformations matricies are nice as they allow you to use a single representation for any transform.

I don't want to start a quat/matrix debate though, both forms definetly have their uses.

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