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PSX Instructor: Mac and Vista

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Moderator
Registered: May 2009
Posts: 5140
Good evening,

here are some comparisons, fresh from the construction site.

(Just click on an image to enlarge.)

User posted image

User posted image

User posted image

User posted image

Regards,

|-|ardy
Member
Registered: May 2009
Posts: 324
Hardy,

As expected from you, extremely detailed and abundant features. Every time I see a new screenshot, I can't believe I will have my hands on this monster next year (I must admit, I have saved every PSX screenshot you have put out so far so I can try to piece together a rough picture of what the whole thing will look like.) Proud to be labeled a PSX-addict this early in the game!
Instead of asking if PSX will simulate this or that, I guess I should be asking what will PSX NOT simulate.
For the one thousand time, THANK YOU for coming back and giving us PSX!

Mariano
Member
Registered: May 2009
Posts: 958
Location: Chicago
I'm impressed. That seems like remarkable progress.
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Will /Chicago /USA
Member
Registered: May 2009
Posts: 241
Hi Hardy!

Wow, that's very impressive! Just a suggestion: on the "Situation / Aerodynamics" pages (and also maybe for the date and time stuff), could you add some "numerical indication" (as an addition to the "sliders") to enable precise entry / readout of the values?
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Pierre, LFPG
Member
Registered: May 2009
Posts: 139
Location: Oostende /Belgium
Hi Hardy ;)
Wauw, wauw, ones again it is very impressive.
This will be really a real life simulator .
Thank you so much for bringing it to us.
My cockpit is waiting.
B. Rgds from Belgium
Michel
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Michel VANDAELE
Board member FSCB
EBOS Scenery Designteam
My B744 project

http://users.telenet.be/michel.vandaele/sim1.htm
Moderator
Registered: May 2009
Posts: 2449
Location: KTMB
"Assumed real world UTC now:" -- does this mean this should be real UTC but the sim can only read the computer's clock, not go out and poll NTP servers, so it may not be actual UTC?

The word "assumed" may induce doubt whether this is simulated UTC. It may be better to drop the word altogether?

[Edit] And for balance: the date/season, will that be set to real world as well (after all, UTC includes the date), or is that another button to press?

Of course, I have World Flight and other "live" online events in mind, where it is useful to have the sim time locked hard to UTC. I understand there may be complexities that disallow a true permanent lock. For example, what to do after a sim pause? In my ACARS there is a feature that pops up a FMC message as soon as real world UTC deviates more than 2 minutes from simulated UTC, allowing the instructor to manually kick the time. This may be interesting for PSX as well.
« Last edit by Jeroen Hoppenbrouwers on Sun, 23 Aug 2009 08:09:59 +0000. »
Moderator
Registered: May 2009
Posts: 2449
Location: KTMB
Pierre Theillere wrote
On the "Situation / Aerodynamics" pages (and also maybe for the date and time stuff), could you add some "numerical indication" (as an addition to the "sliders") to enable precise entry / readout of the values?

This would likely disturb the pretty, clean layout... but it is possible that the Java library supports showing this digital readout while sliding (or pressing up/down keys).

At first, I was surprised about the missing "straight numerical entry" feature, as I am so used to seeing these for nearly everything. They are very small compared to the sliders and convenient to operate. Then I realised that in very few cases you want to set exactly a figure. The exception is "real UTC". In nearly all other cases you want to go "somewhere near X" and a slider is likely the interface for this.
Member
Registered: Jul 2009
Posts: 158
I'll get to the point straight away. Far out. Thanks Hardy.

regards,
delcom
Moderator
Registered: May 2009
Posts: 5140
Good morning all,

thanks a lot.

"Assumed" UTC: This is derived from the local computer clock and its time setting.

Time injection is possible by addons. PSX itself won't play with the Internet in the background. You only need Internet syncronization when you need Internet syncronization. Else, the computer's clock is precise enough for the sim's daylight and weather effects.

Clicking the button will copy the value to the UTC slider and season slider.

The season slider is a season slider, not a birthday slider.

...

Editable digits. Jeroen has hit the nail on the head :-) They would destroy the easy and elegant analog look and feel etc. pp.

Typing in, say, 15678 feet digits is like entering 156.78 knots, or 15.678 % MAC, or 156.78 tons. Which instructor needs and wants to bother with this kind of precision just to set up a new situation? Also, the sliders are alive, they move with the aircraft, the aircraft will immediately fly on at 15678 ... 15685 ... 15671 ... so all the precision entered would be gone in the next moment anyway.

The sliders are long :-)

And the world is not sterile as a theoretical Excel sheet. The world is rough and dirty and ... panta rei :-)


Cheers,

|-|ardy
Moderator
Registered: May 2009
Posts: 2449
Location: KTMB
Instead of "Assumed UTC", consider "Computer clock time". Nearly all modern computers (operating systems) already sync their clock to UTC from the internet, and are aware of time zone position to display the local time to the user. Here you would ask UTC from the computer clock. PSX will never need to talk NTP by itself, for sure.

Alternatively stated: I would not try to be nuanced here. Just say: this is UTC. Don't say: this may be UTC if the user has correctly set the clock etc. etc. etc. "Assumed UTC" still rings the "this is simulator UTC" bell to me, even if a bit further down there is a "simulated UTC" option.

Still simpler: you have simulated UTC and real UTC. You don't want to claim "assumed UTC, possibly real UTC but could be off, depending on what the computer owner did to his clock".

Nobody will use PSX as a UTC reference source :)

Those live sliders ... they move as the plane moves, and when you manually move them, they forcefully drag the plane/planet around?
Member
Registered: May 2009
Posts: 214
Location: EDDM
Hi Hardy, great to see your progress :)

Just two comments/questions:
* For comfort of other non-metric cultures I guess you offer an option to toggle the weight related slider scales between kgs and lbs?
* If "true altitude" is MSL then it should support slightly negative values as well to fit some airports. Or is true altitude = AGL?
* I am wondering what the purpose the season slider might be. Does PSX offer a very basic default world-wide weather model (temps/winds)? Or does this slider set a variable for external weather generators?

Regards, Holger
Member
Registered: May 2009
Posts: 414
Location: Mumbai, India
Hardy Heinlin wrote
The season slider is a season slider, not a birthday slider.


I can't stop laughing at this !!
Member
Registered: May 2009
Posts: 241
Hi Holger!

I guess the "season" slider is to enable PSx to correctly simulated accurate daylight depending to position / time of year combination. PS1 had a simple model, that was good for "around equinox" period (i.e. Sept, 23rd or Mar, 21st) where sunlight nearly only depends on longitude. I guess (and hope) that PSx features a nice complete daylight simulation, with the famous endless daylight / nighttime beyond polar circle...
Oooh, and just a question for Hardy: will PSx external window feature sun's position? Probably, a daylight simulation leads to knowing the azimuth and elevation of the sun, so that could be something quite easy to do... if useful! I didn't ask for a moon and planetarium simulation... but who knows?
_______________
Pierre, LFPG
Member
Registered: May 2009
Posts: 414
Location: Mumbai, India
Jeroen Hoppenbrouwers wrote
Those live sliders ... they move as the plane moves, and when you manually move them, they forcefully drag the plane/planet around?


I guess they would be as potent as the "New Position/Time" in PS1.
That too will 'forcefully drag' the plane, and you might get all kinds of
overspeed and other warnings.

Cheers,
Shiv
Moderator
Registered: May 2009
Posts: 5140
Jeroen Hoppenbrouwers wrote
Don't say: this may be UTC if the user has correctly set the clock etc. etc. etc.

Hm ... why not say this? On the Mac there is a switch to set the clock via Internet. It may be switched off intentionally, e.g. if an Internet connection is not desired, or if a user in, say, Asia may set his personal Mac clock to America time or whatever – intentionally. The "assumed" UTC is derived from the data listed in blue directly above the "assumed" UTC indication.

I don't insist on that "assumed" word. But I need good arguments against it before I remove it. I'm trying to avoid misunderstandings as much as possible. For exampe, I added the word "now" after "daylight saving time hours" because without the "now" it's not clear if it refers to the general political convention on that time zone – or the current status today.


Jeroen Hoppenbrouwers wrote
Those live sliders ... they move as the plane moves, and when you manually move them, they forcefully drag the plane/planet around?

Yes. And it's a pleasure to work with it. You see the aerodynamic effects immediately as you move the sliders with your finger tip. No more number typing, no more OK buttons, no more menu tree clicking, ... it's all direct and without pausing.


Holger Wende wrote
* For comfort of other non-metric cultures I guess you offer an option to toggle the weight related slider scales between kgs and lbs?
* If "true altitude" is MSL then it should support slightly negative values as well to fit some airports. Or is true altitude = AGL?
* I am wondering what the purpose the season slider might be. Does PSX offer a very basic default world-wide weather model (temps/winds)? Or does this slider set a variable for external weather generators?

* Yes
* Zero sets the aircraft on the ground, be it La Paz or negative EHAM
* Daylight and weather (if an addon wants to read it also, then do it)


Pierre Theillere wrote
will PSx external window feature sun's position? Probably, a daylight simulation leads to knowing the azimuth and elevation of the sun, so that could be something quite easy to do... if useful! I didn't ask for a moon and planetarium simulation... but who knows?

I tried it and with my yellow sun "disk" the outside view looked like a children's painting :-) I really had to laugh :-) It was just a plain vector arc with a sharp border. Without blurring glow effects it just looks ridiculous. Blurr effects in the high speed animation are extremely expensive. So, no way. I'm sorry.

I also tried white instead of yellow, but then the sun looked like the moon.

The brightness of the sky and the white clouds on the monitor – i.e. the active monitor light – is pretty realistic. I mean the intensity. – When a sun is added, the sun is simply too dark compared to the rest. when the sky and clouds have the original brightness on the monitor, the sun should have the orignal brightness as well. Otherwise it looks like a photo or children's painting. It destroys the illusion somehow.

Stars and the moon are easier. But it's too much work to program the positions.


Cheers,

|-|ardy
Moderator
Registered: May 2009
Posts: 2449
Location: KTMB
Instead of showing the actual sun disk, it may be interesting to wash out the complete window with white if heading directly into the sun.
Moderator
Registered: May 2009
Posts: 5140
I think that's a good idea. I'll try it when I'm at that chapter ...

|-|


P.S.: But not with a semi-transparent white layer. That's too expensive. I have to make another color algorithm inside the existing (3) color transitions. (top sky to shortly above horizon, shortly above horizon to shortly below horizon, shortly below horizon to ground).
Moderator
Registered: May 2009
Posts: 5140
A good point against the word "assumed": The label on the button just reads "real world UTC to ...", not "assumed real world UTC to ...".

In order to make it clear that the button refers to that assumed UTC, the word should be at both places, or at none. Better at none, as the button is too small for another word.

|-|
Moderator
Registered: May 2009
Posts: 5140
That sun thing ... that will probably be confused with the fog effect ...
Member
Registered: May 2009
Posts: 100
Location: Vienna
Will the instructor station (and PSX itself) support touchscreens?

Walter
Member
Registered: May 2009
Posts: 309
Location: Winchester, UK
I may be missing something, but....

I thought PSX was going to leave all external environments i.e. suns, stars, wx, etc, to other products, such as FSX, Active Sky, and their non-Windows equivalents?

Cheers, Richard
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Cheers, Richard
Member
Registered: May 2009
Posts: 100
Location: Vienna
Hi Richard,

As far as I understand, PSX will have a basic environment simulation to display day, night, dusk, dawn, fog, runways and some basic weather simulation, so you can use PSX right out of the box with no other program (and computer) needed. Of course you can use other programs as scenery and weather generators (MSFS, XPlane, FlightGear or any other). But you need another PC then.

Cheers
Walter
Member
Registered: May 2009
Posts: 241
_______________
Pierre, LFPG
Member
Registered: May 2009
Posts: 944
Just a quick thought, probably without merit --

Would the sliders be sufficiently accurate to initialize the airplane at cruise altitude and speed, which can be very sensitive to speed and altitude accuracy as I understand it? I'm thinking specifically about the "coffin corner" effect where one can't be very far off the target mach number and altitude if one wishes to avoid a stall. Perhaps this or other "near stalling" conditions would require a numerically accurate parameter set.

I'm sure others would have thought of this hypothetical concern if it had merit but I thought it would still be best to mention it just in case it's worth considering.
_______________
Best wishes,

Phil Bunch
Moderator
Registered: May 2009
Posts: 5140
Hardy Heinlin wrote
P.S.: But not with a semi-transparent white layer. That's too expensive. I have to make another color algorithm inside the existing (3) color transitions ...

Wrong. Not too expensive. I forgot that the outside view background bitmap is just 1 pixel wide (1500 pixels high), so the semi-transparent area to be drawn is not bigger than a thumbnail actually. Pretty cheap. The bitmap (1 x 1500) is being generated in the background, and when rendered in the outside view its width of 1 pixel is scaled up by factor 7000. – Scaling a small bitmap up is much cheaper than using a big bitmap at scale 1.

...

Walter Kranl wrote
Will the instructor station (and PSX itself) support touchscreens?

Yes. Actually, any program that can be clicked by the mouse can also be clicked by touchscreens. It should have an ergonomic layout, however.

Cheers,

|-|ardy

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