ircmarkers - place markers on maps at given coordinates


ircmarkers [-q] [-o command] [-y south/north -x west/east] config [inputmap outputmap]


IrcMarkers takes a map in .png or .jpg format and a list of coordinates and labels in xplanet format and places markers on the map. It was written to generate user maps of IRC channels.

GnuPG/PGP key ids can be associated with each marker, to create ``maps of trust''.

IrcMarkers reads its configuration and the list of markers from a config file. The most important options (map to read/write, map dimensions) can be specified on the command line. Settings on the command line override settings in the config file.



Config file to read markers and options from. This parameter is mandatory.


Read input map from inputmap. Supported formats are .gif, .jpg/jpeg, .png, .xbm, .xpm, and the libgd-Formats .gd/gd1 and .gd2.


Write output map to outputmap. Supported formats are .gif, .jpg/jpeg, .png, .gd/gd1, .gd2, and .wbmp.


Be quiet. Per default, IrcMarkers prints which labels and links are placed on the map.

-y south/north
-x west/east

Declare input map dimensions. Unless specified otherwise in the config file, the map is assumed to be in mercator projection. -y specifies the lower/upper latitude coordinates, -x the left/right edge longitude. Per default, the map is assumed to be a world map (-y -90/90 -x -180/180).

-o command

Evaluate a configuration command. It will be executed before any commands in the config file (i.e. it will not override commands there).


The following directives can be used in the config file:

Marker and Label Definitions

lat lon ``marker''
lat lon ``marker'' options
aa11aa ``marker'' options
``marker'' options

Place marker with label marker on map at given coordinates. Use negative values for south/east, positive for north/west. This (decimal) format is compatible with the xplanet syntax.

 49.2532 7.0425 "Myon"

Alternative formats recognized are:

 N51°11.123 E006°25.846
 N 51 11.123 E 006 25.846
 N 51° 11' 7.38" E 006° 25' 50.76"

The noise characters °'`` are optional.

Also recognized are Maidenhead (QTH) locators.

 JN39PF "Myon"
label y x ``text''
label y x ``text'' options

Place a label at position y/x (in pixels). Useful for headlines etc. Using negative values will count from the bottom/right border in X11's -geometry style.

Marker and Label Options

The following options can be specified per marker or globally (except gpg). Global options set defaults for all following marker definitions.

gpg keyid

Associate GnuPG/PGP keyid with the marker. If two keys have signed each other, and both markers are visible on the map, a link will be drawn between the markers. Multiple keyids can be given. Example:

``Myon'' gpg B46B923B6D8ABE71 gpg C5AF774A58510B5A

Note: This is the long, 16 character keyid. To retrieve it, use gpg --list-key --with-colon.

label_color R G B
label_border R G B|none

Color of the labels placed on the map. Default is label_color 255 255 0, label_border 0 0 0. The border can be removed by specifying the ``none'' color.

font fontfile

Full pathname to the .ttf font used for the labels. Default is font /usr/share/ircmarkers/fixed_01.ttf.

fontsize|ptsize size

Size in points of the labels. Default is fontsize 6.

dot_color R G B
dot_border R G B|none

Color of the dots placed on the map. Default is dot_color 255 255 255, dot_border 0 0 0.

dot_size size

Size of the dots. Default is 2.

dot_shape dot|circle

Dots are filled (dot) or hollow (circle). Default is dot.

href link

Link target to use in an imagemap.

alias|pic|bigpic|sex string

Options for export to pisg(1), see the pisg option below.

Link Definition and Options

``marker1'' <-> ``marker2''
``marker1'' <-> ``marker2'' options

Draw a link between marker1 and marker2.

link_color|sign2_color R G B|none

Color of the lines drawn between the markers. Default is link_color 255 128 0.

Global Options

read inputmap

Read input map from inputmap. Supported formats are .jpg and .png.

write outputmap

Write output map to outputmap. Supported formats are .jpg, .png, .gd1, .gd2, and .wbmp.

lat|south_north south/north
lon|west_east west/east

Declare input map dimensions. Default is lat -90/90, lon -180/180.

Note: It is possible to use ``unusual'' values like lon 0/360 if you adjust the coordinates as well. (-20 becomes 340 etc.)

view_lat|view_south_north south/north
view_lon|view_west_east west/east

Only show part of the map in the output. Default is to show the whole map.

view_width pixels
view_height pixels

Size of output map. Default is input map, or size of part selected.

projection mercator|sinusoidal
center_lon center

Map projection. Default is mercator. center_lon is only used for sinusoidal projection. There is no default for center_lon.

link_outside on|off

Whether to draw lines to markers that are not visible on the map. Default is link_outside off.

sign1_color R G B|none

Color of the lines drawn for uni-directional GnuPG/PGP signatures. Default is link_color none.

imagemap file

Write HTML image map to file. The map contains areas for all markers and labels with a href option. The name of the imagemap is the basename of the output map with the extension stripped.

overlap overlapcorrector

Full pathname to the binary that moves the labels around to reduce overlap. Default is overlapcorrector /usr/lib/ircmarkers/overlap. Chances are that you only need to change that parameter if you are debugging the overlap corrector.

overlap_correction on|off

Whether to use the overlap corrector or not. Default is overlap_correction on. Turn it off if you have really many labels.


Instead of writing a map, print a config file suitable for pisg(1), most useful with ircmarkers -o pisg file. The exported marker options are alias, pic, bigpic, sex, and href (the latter as link).


Call gpg --recv-keys (most useful with ircmarkers -o recv-keys).

quiet on|off

Be quiet. Default is quiet off.

#include ``configfile''

Read auxillary config file.

# comment

Anything else starting with a # character is a comment.


ircmarkers -x -10.4/29.4 -y 32/72 coordinates.txt europe.jpg mutt-eu.jpg

        read dl.jpg
        lat 44/56
        lon 4/20
        label_color 0 255 0
        49.2532 7.0425 "Myon"
        50.8574 6.4585 "formorer" label_color 255 255 0
        N 51° 11.123 E 006° 25.846 "GC1ACE3"
        #include ""
        #include ""


The GD library keeps a raw bitmap of the map in memory. Big maps will use lots of memory. Precompute the map you are going to use, i.e. downsample it to the target size using Imagemagick's convert or IrcMarkers view_* functions.

Please report bugs in IrcMarkers using the Debian bug tracking system. The IrcMarkers bug page is at


Library used

Programs related to IrcMarkers

Locating coordinates



IrcMarkers was written by Christoph Berg <>. You can find me (Myon) on ircnet/freenode/oftc.

Thanks go to Uli Martens for the ``map of trust'' idea.

Alexander Wirt suggested the capability to draw selected parts of the map.

Elmar Hoffmann suggested several error checks and config options.

Rico Gloeckner suggested to support Maidenhead locators.

The IrcMarkers homepage is at


Copyright (C) 2003-2008 Christoph Berg <>

This program is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by the Free Software Foundation; either version 2 of the License, or (at your option) any later version.

This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. See the GNU General Public License for more details.

You should have received a copy of the GNU General Public License with the Debian GNU/Linux distribution in file /usr/share/common-licenses/GPL; if not, write to the Free Software Foundation, Inc., 51 Franklin St, Fifth Floor, Boston, MA 02110-1301 USA

IrcMarkers is an improved version of MapMarkers.

Copyright (C) 2002, 2003 Guillaume Leclanche (Mo-Ize) <>

The font provided with this package, fixed_01.ttf, has been created by the Orgdot team,

(C) 2001