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SpyGlass is an modular and extensible application designed to visualize sensor networks on a screen. It displays a set of sensor nodes at their location on a map, as well as arbitrary data sent by the nodes, e.g. connectivity status between nodes or aggregated data collected by the nodes' sensors.

SpyGlass now supports the WISEBED WSN testbeds! Simply connect to a running experiment from SpyGlass to use it as a packet source for your visualization.

The SpyGlass application itself is a framework, designed to be extendable by plugins that visualize arbitrary things. In fact, all visualization and data aggregation that is done, is done by a set of bundled plugins, each fulfilling a certain functionality. The primary focus of SpyGlass is the visualization of a set of sensor nodes, forming a network. However, SpyGlass can also be used in other, nearly arbitrary scenarios, where packet based communication is used. This is because visualization is done based on network packets, which represent statistical, structural or any other arbitrary data, sent by the nodes to the SpyGlass application. Those packets are then dispatched to the various plugins, which in turn, interpret the packet, draw things onto the screen when appropriate and aggregate data contained in the packets. The whole range of visualization opportunities, delivered by the currently bundled plugins, is described in the SpyGlass github Wiki pages.

SpyGlass bases on the requests given by the Institute of Telematics (ITM) of the University of Lübeck and was developed by Daniel Bimschas, Sebastian Ebers, Dariush Forouher and Oliver Kleine in the context of a case study for professional product development.

Documentation and Issue Tracking

The issue tracker can be found on our SpyGlass github project home. Please report bugs there, you only need a valid github account to do so. The documentation can be found in the SpyGlass github Wiki pages.

Binary Downloads

Please see the Downloads page in the github Wiki for binary downloads.


SpyGlass is based on the Apache Maven build system. Clone the project and simply run mvn install (or mvn clean install to be on the safe side) for building. For building the various platform specific distributions (SpyGlass is based on SWT) run one of

mvn -Pcocoa-macosx-x86_64 assembly:assembly
mvn -Pcocoa-macosx-x86 assembly:assembly
mvn -Pgtk-linux-x86_64 assembly:assembly
mvn -Pgtk-linux-x86 assembly:assembly
mvn -Pwindows-x86_64 assembly:assembly
mvn -Pwindows-x86 assembly:assembly

in the core submodule depending on what your target platform is. This will build an executable JAR of the standalone SpyGlass version.


The project is made open-source under the terms of the BSD license, was created and is maintained by the Institute of Telematics, University of Luebeck, Germany.


SpyGlass is a modular and extensible visualization framework for wireless sensor networks



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