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steffenpelz

The future of FSUIPC

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Wheewwww...what a post.FSUIPC is the nerve center of my homebuilt cockpit...it allows all the crosstalk between dials and buttons ans switches and everything. The market will definitely speak if it goes to payware...If it does I'll pay, if it does not I'll donate. Until then I'll be watching...

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Hello John,It takes a big man to say sorry and your apology is gratefully accepted. Thank you for your honesty and understanding.Regards,

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>Practically every FS install out there has FSUIPC, and many add-ons linked to itYes John, and they will still work with the version you currently have. Developers can still develop using the current free version. The issue will be if he adds new features to it, then the deciaion will have to be made to buy or not. Am I wrong in this?

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JWenting,I'm very confused by the apparent inconsistency in your posts. In several you seem to support the idea of Pete charging for FSUIPC but today you castigate me for making an appeal on his behalf for voluntary contributions...<<...I won't be bullied by threats such as Rays post is clearly meant to be no matter what he says.>>Why would I bully you? I have absolutely no financial interest in FSUIPC. My reason for posting on Saturday was to show support for a friend. I'm extremely disappointed by your comments. I tried to keep to the facts. If you preceive that as a threat then that is unfortunate but it was not my intention to bully or threaten anyone.

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> The market will definitely speak if >it goes to payware... >>If it does I'll pay, if it does not I'll donate. Until then >I'll be watching... There is of course another possibility: that Peter decides it is all too much hassle and takes up fishing instead - that will leave us with FS2004 but no FSUIPC, as Ray has already told us that existing versions won't work with FS2004. So no Radar Contact, FS Meteo, etc. etc..Peter's contributions to the hobby go back a long, long way. His scenery utilities package, SCUTILS, was a popular download back in FS3 days.It's just as well Peter doesn't have time to read these forums - I think he would be deeply hurt by some of the unkind comments.

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First allPeter your FSUIPC and other programs are greatly appreciated as Freeware.I am well aware of the time and money and hard work that you and other freeware developers put into your projects. My hat is off to you and ALL freeware developers.BUT> this is gonna get me flamed.I will not pay. I will not donate.I used Flightsim before i realized there was a Vatsim network, SB, and all that, i didnt even download a freeware panel till just 3 years ago, and it didnt need FSUIPC.If FSUIPC goes Payware, i go offline or stick with the last freeware version for as long as possible.I pay for nothing for this hobby, i bought the game,joystick,computer. Thats enough.If there was not any freeware products out there i would be using FlightSim offline, with default panels and planes. I would not be using AVSIM, FlightSim,Simviation,VA's,Vatsim, would not be visiting the Freeware sites. All these folks have paying advertisers, they get money everytime i visit.Now for you too make money off this...You bet you should.I never did understand why all these Payware Planes, Panels, Stuff never paid for what basically amounts to The operating system of there product..without FSUIPC they wont work!!.The folks that make these products should pay you a fee, if they choose to pass it along to the consumer of there product.well thats business!As for not developing FSUIPC for FS9 or the next version of Flightsim..I say give it a shot...announce it now that you will not be developing FSUIPC for free for the new Microsoft Flightsim.Then watch this thread! Watch the Payware makers scramble, more likely you will be listening to them BEG you to change your mind. Inform MickeySoft of this as well, they should be your biggest contributor....If NOT for your FSUIPC I would still be flying FlightSim 98!!! Got one taste of freeware panel..and here i am with FlightSim 2k2 with the computer to work it!! Thousands of $$..All because of your FREEWARE utility.If you decide to go payware..that is your decision..i will thank you for the freeware, and say goodbye to VATSIM,Avsim,and all else that requires FSUIPC.Final word...Payware producers = Pay Peter Dowson for using FSUIPCFreeware = Hope Payware producers pay Peter Dowson for using FSUIPC.Just a note on how to do the Payware pays, Freeware free.Use the newest Fsuipcs for the New payware, and the old FSUIPC give out to us cheapo's. Like FSNAV did with vers 3. Stop supporting the freeware , u issue the new FSUIPC to the Payware folks, support them as req'd when all is done and you start on the new versions, feed the old hand me downs to us cheaposLet the burning begin!

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This thread has prompted me to increase my original intended donation of 25 euros by a factor of 4, and I just did the Deed on simmarket.com (not my favorite FS site, but that's where Pete has dropped anchor so that's where I went).I have Mr. Dowson to thank for not only FSUIPC, but also the wonderful "PFC.DLL" that is the ONLY reason why my Precision Flight Controls avionics stack and "Cirrus II" yoke/console work with Flight Simulator. Furthermore, via simple email requests to him, he enhanced PFC.DLL and FSUIPC.DLL in the following manners (within days!):- they now allow the FS2002 directional gyro knob to be controlled by a hardware knob on the PFC avionics stack- they now allow full button/knob re-assignment of the PFC hardware. This allows me (for instance) to control the FSAvionics Garmin GNS530 simulator with buttons and knobs... as well as any number of other possibilities should I need to take advantage of them.It has already been pointed out some of the bugs that FSUIPC addresses, such as the FS time vs. system time issue, smoothing of wind velocities, etc.And I will also point out (even though many people know this already) that if it were not for FSUIPC, many programs would not work at all, without very substantial R&D investment (and duplicated work) by any number of freeware and payware authors. For instance, here are some of the add-ons I use that require it:- FSMeteo (which I no longer use - in favor of...)- ActiveSky- FSGarmin- FSFlightMax- Radar Contact v3.0! (Hello?)- Project MagentaThere are many other programs that require it. But the point is - I have a real problem with people that try to make the following arguments/excuses:- it has always been free so it should always be free.- I'm not gonna pay for it unless it doesn't stay freeware.- I'm not gonna pay for it, cause it might become payware.- I'm not gonna pay for it, cause Pete might stop working on it for FS:COF.- the payware developers, not I, should pay for it.- I've already paid for FS2002 and my $100 joystick, why should I spend another dime even though it makes a bunch of other stuff work?- payware will kill the hobby!- Pete stole the code from the guy that originally developed the module for FS6!- I'm a conscientious objector to FSUIPC (oh wait, I made that one up, but it seems to apply to several other posters).All of the above attitudes are rather depressing, but I'm trying to get beyond them and instead remember only the posts that recognize Pete's absolutely *tremendous* contribution to this hobby/passion.Harumph,Dave BlevinsKRHV

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I support whatever decision Pete will make, but I won't be led to donate by threats that there will be no new version or it will be payware only if I don't donate now (which is what your post implicated even if you didn't intend it like that).In fact such threats make me (and apparently others) think twice about donating now. Will our donations be taken into consideration when that commercial version is released? Will we get our money back if it turns out development is stopped because of lack of donations so we can invest it in another product that does the same?Thoughts like that are probably going through the minds of many people here, most of whom are on a limited budget and have to carefully consider where to spend their money.I had a donation of at least

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>All of the above attitudes are rather depressing, but I'm >trying to get beyond them and instead remember only the >posts that recognize Pete's absolutely *tremendous* >contribution to this hobby/passion. Your post just reminded me of one, rather specific thing that FSUIPC "fixes," that alone justifies a bit of $ in addition to profuse thanks to Pete, namely:the "Everlasting Rain Syndrome!!!"It was so annoying having rain start and never end!!! :)

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Maybe this is Pete's fault for not seeing the potential it had in the begining and charging for it then. If Pete starts to charge for FSUIPC now then either other developers will pay for it or find another way around it and create competition in the development of new FSUIPC's. If other developers have to pay for it, that will increase the cost of their products which I feel some are already over priced! In this time of economic crunch everyone wants to be comepensated some how. Just to say that,"people do what they do because they enjoy it." is a farse. I do what I do becaue I get paid damn well for it (glad it is in a field I enjoy)!The only thing that makes money off donations is the Good Will, Churches, and the Salvation Army! Other than that if you want to work for donations, just plan on getting paid with a pat on the back and a "Job well done."

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I this thread really underscores the slippery slope a freeware developer gets into when considering asking for a fee.In general I think many don't like to pay for what they are already getting for free. I've seen this many times before the devaluing of freeware.Paying a fee for FSUIPC now is like paying for what you are already getting for free, that's the way many see it IMO.My suggestion to Pete is to have three versions1) A Professional version:This would be required for most payware developers. Each payware developer would have to pay a license fee to include it with their package. Part of this fee would include support for future customizations, etc. This version would recieve the highest level of support and recieve the most improvements and customizations.2) A developers version.This can be used for shareware or freeware developers for a nominal fee, there would be limited support improvements and customizations.3) General version Basically the freeware version, very little support very few additional features added.This way anyone paying a fee will be paying for new features and support rather than just paying for what they are already getting for free. But a developer or anyone else who wants a new feature or customization or bug fix included should be prepared to pony up.Those who do not wish to pay a fee under any circumstances, do not lose anything they can continue to use the general version free of charge.Regards.Ernie.

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To all users of FSUIPC,Pete Dowson is on holiday from this Friday returning on 14th April. I am posting this message with his full agreement...START OF MESSAGEPete is away until 14th April and is postponing any decision on the future of FSUIPC until his return. He is still evaluating the amount of work required to make it compatible with FS9 and to become a shareware product should that be necessary. However, the greater the number of donations - personal but especially commercial ones - the less chance there is that he will need to consider a shareware version. The amount of work involved in converting the current version to work with FS9 is considerable - not just a tweak here and there and this would be increased further if shareware code was required.I know this isn't the answer your looking for but Pete needs more time to consider his best course of action. Please understand he's under a great deal of pressure to get a working version out for the summer release of FS9 so if you want to relieve some of that pressure please visit this link http://secure.simmarket.com/product_info.php?products_id=453 and give what you can. Collectively, you have the power to keep FSUIPC away from commercial developers, to ease Pete's workload and give him some financial reward for the huge amount of work he has undertaken both in the past and now.END OF MESSAGE.Please understand I cannot answer any specific questions on this subject. I'm simply putting Pete's thoughts into text for your info.For those of you who consider this request for donations a threat I'm sorry you feel the message implies this. It's very difficult to put proposals into words without someone reading it differently to others.Once Pete returns and has made his decision I will keep you posted although it's likely he will post the news on his own FSUIPC support page at http://forums.simflight.com/viewforum.php?...e0e1faa86d11c91Regards,

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Reminds me of a saying - TANSTAAFLThere Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch.After reading the majority of this inane thread, if I were Pete, I'd say sxxxw you all and stop producing FSUIPC entirely. You want it for free? Go write your own.Does ANYONE have any idea of the amount of time and effort it takes to support FSUIPC, answering stupid questions from users who don't know how to read the documentation? And all this flap just because the guy would like to get some rewards for his efforts?One of you "rocket scientist" freeware developers went so far as to say he'd not produce any more modules if he had to pay for FSUIPC - well, BFD - so who cares? If the module was any good someone else will write another one. Of course, if you were any sort of programmer at all, you could always write your own FSUIPC module.Enuf of my rant, but I just had to say that for most of you, quit whining - if you don't want to pay - don't worry - you can stay with FS2K2 'cause FS2002 isn't compatible with the old FSUIPC.Just my 2 cents worth.BTW, I would pay if it became payware.vgb

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"I'd say sxxxw you all and stop producing FSUIPC entirely. You want it for free? Go write your own."First, since you are referring to my posts, did you also read my apology--or are you on too much of a grandstanding kick to pay attention to such things? Since you want to insult me, fine...I'll respond in kind: if you were any type of "writer", you'd think before shoving your foot in your mouth.Were you the same ******* that recently sent me an email, trashing my program because I didn't include a link to Microsoft's SDK? As I said to that idiot, I don't get paid for such trash talk. You can can go to hell with the trash talk in this rant!Edit: There seems to be the general consensus here to insult my programs, programming skills, etc.... because I made a mistake and spoke before thinking. But those of you posting don't appear as familiar users--I certainly haven't seen you contribute files based on my contribution, which I believe some would say was also significant, at least in the area of scenery design. I doubt many of you have coded anything, and have little understanding of what challenge Pete has faced--but it is a challenge shared by anyone who writes code in support of FS. I am in the process of researching ways to read state data from FS, so I can keep my software free. I wasn't planning on investing that time, but if Pete decides to charge for FSUIPC and I still want to support my programs, then I would also have to charge a nominal fee if I want to maintain a link to his work. The choice goes out to my users--not to jerks like the one I responded to in this reply, who haven't a clue about the work any of us do. They like to hop on the bandwagon--nothing more--perhaps to get their free copy of FSUIPC?

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VGB,I agree with most of what you say but - I would submit that we do already "owe" Pete something at this very moment, no matter *what* happens to FSUIPC in the future. Initially I was of the mind that I'd wait until it became share/payware but then I realized that my FS2002 experience would be a far sight less pleasurable without the various add-ons and fixes that FSUIPC allows. *Every single time* I "fly", some aspect of its functionality is making it a more realistic and in some cases (e.g. perpetual rain) less annoying experience.As Ray said in his post today, every donation will help sway Pete in "our" direction.---(separate rant)There are some other posts that either crack me up or make me want to beat my head against a wall (haven't decided which yet) - these are the ones that somehow want to place blame on Pete for not doing this or that. For crying out loud, he started out writing a module for his own use, released it to the world, and has since enhanced it to be what it is today - an amazingly (from my experience anyway) bug-free piece of code that is the Swiss Army Knife of flight simulation. To "blame" him for not charging in the first place, not releasing it at all, etc. etc. is the height of ludicrousness. Criminy,Dave Blevins

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Ray,Thanks for the update....For what it's worth, Pete shouldn't feel pressured to get the FS9 version of FSUIPC in synch with the release of FS9. The fact is, his work has been a free ride for all of us, developers and users alike. Even if he charges from this point on, he is under no obligation (other than the obvious commitment he displays to the community) to get FSUIPC ready based on Microsoft's schedule. In another forum, I had mentioned that there used to be an easier way to read/write data from FS without need for a separate dll.... But Microsoft changed the calling conventions of most of FS's functions, and those original methods became dead in the water. Sounds like Pete is facing the same situation..... To get a sense of what that means, perhaps those who aren't developers should take a peek at Pete's SDK, which I and other developers have had to rely on to "talk" to FS. If the offsets in the SDK change by even one byte, rewriting the SDK alone is a major project....Regards, and best wishes

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Microsoft as stated that FS2002 addons that followed the SDK are compatible with ACOF. I'm wondering how may are in that situation. Jos

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Part of me hopes that Pete won't have read all the way down this thread to this point, but in case he does, I'd just like to add another vote of thanks to him for all that he has done for the flight sim community.FWIW he's had a cheerfully-provided donation from me. Goodness knows how many hours of enjoyable flight simming I've had that wouldn't have been possible without the many hours of freely-provided work he has given us.Best wishes, Pete, whatever you decide to do...--Brian ToobyTCA Pilot #2658Pilot's Assistant Home Page:http://www.tooby.demon.co.uk/P_Assist_Home.html

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I don't think Pete's work will fall under Microsoft's statement. FSUIPC was made compatible with FS2002 long before Microsoft released the SDK. Had Pete waited for the SDK, we would have had no FSUIPC, or we'd have been stuck waiting for it. He had to pour a lot of research into getting it to work. Someone had noted that Pete shouldn't charge for FSUIPC, as it was developed out of another interface module written by Adam S. I would suspect that FSUIPC has evolved so much, that all code within is now Pete's and Pete's alone. It's his, and we shouldn't think of it in any other way.As for the SDK, I ran into the same issue with Landclass Assistant. I released it some months before the 2k2 Terrain/Scenery SDK, mostly using info gleaned from the scenery design forum, including some of the reverse engineering done by some very dedicated hobbyists. Waiting for the 2k2 Terrain/Scenery SDK would have stalled many projects. We've also found that for landclassing and photoreal scenery, the FS2000 resample utility included with 2000's SDK seems better suited to the task.

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As soon as I saw the donation site I jumped in with out a second thought!Pete has gone WAY out of his way to help me in the past, and add ideas I came up with and shot some down :(When I thought of what I would have if I removed ALL of Petes great work that was enough for me.Sure you can use FS without Fsuipc go ahead and try it.I for one would give up the hobby if there was no Fsuipc, Gpsout, Widefs, Advdisplay, Autosave, and let me see what else do I use that he gave me? Everyone gets something different out of FS. I get a hell of a lot from Pete.Just my 2 cents.

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John, if you need help with the state data let me know. I'll attempt to contribute what I can. Not much on C++ programming, but VB still works! :-)Jim

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John,I wanted to pipe up and mention that I came very very close to slamming you in this thread, much as "vgb" did. I had read all of this thread a day or so before I made my initial response to it, and your first few posts were, frankly, the ones that got me all worked up in the first place. I happened to read the newer responses immediately before making my post, and the result was a last-minute excisement of a paragraph dedicated to you 8^) .So maybe that's what happened with the other fellow as well.FWIW, probably nothing to you, but I am pleased/relieved that you seem to have revised your original position on this whole thing - I have occasionally been as guilty as anyone of posting something based on my first take of something in a forum, only later to realize that I should've waited a little before responding.regards,Dave Blevins

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Thanks Dave,Part of my fault was not taking the time to read the original thread Ray had placed. I was in California at the time, and rather than take a simple minute to search, I decided to chime into the thread on half my cylinders. Had I not been so lazy, I would have understood Ray was coming in as a friend to our community, and saved a lot of frustrations for people who had to read my blather.-John

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JWenting,<>You know, I've tried really hard to make these messages not look like threats but it seems I've failed to find a choice of words that is acceptable to you. To me they are statements of fact. It's all the harder because I'm trying to describe to you the thoughts of another person who has yet to make up his mind on how he intends to proceed. Pete's decision should be known in a couple of weeks so perhaps you could hang on until then.Knowing the man and how much he derives pleasure from FS and all its supportive software I would be very surprised if he didn't develop a version of FSUIPC for FS9. Please note this is my own personal opinion and nothing should be inferred from it.I also know Pete is a man of impeccable character and if there was a future version of FSUIPC those who have contributed above a reasonable minimum would not be forgotten. Again, this is my own personal opinion.As for the timing of the appeal, donations would generally be made by credit card anyway so the timing in relation to payday is not that critical in my own opinion. If people are going to give I think they will whatever the time of month but I can understand their reluctance if they felt there wouldn't be a future version of FSUIPC. My own gut feeling is that there will but again, I repeat this is a personal opinion.I hope in the light of this you will reconsider your decision.Regards,

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Quote:"My suggestion to Pete is to have three versions1) A Professional version:This would be required for most payware developers. Each payware developer would have to pay a license fee to include it with their package. Part of this fee would include support for future customizations, etc. This version would recieve the highest level of support and recieve the most improvements and customizations.2) A developers version.This can be used for shareware or freeware developers for a nominal fee, there would be limited support improvements and customizations.3) General versionBasically the freeware version, very little support very few additional features added.This way anyone paying a fee will be paying for new features and support rather than just paying for what they are already getting for free. But a developer or anyone else who wants a new feature or customization or bug fix included should be prepared to pony up.Those who do not wish to pay a fee under any circumstances, do not lose anything they can continue to use the general version free of charge.Regards.Ernie."End Quote.I think that Ernie has provided a much needed moment of clarity here. This is an excellent idea. Payware companies get treated like real companies, developers of freeware are cut a lot of slack to allow them to provide thier talents to the community, and the end user gets to make the final choice with his/her wallet.Excellent post Ernie.Tim13

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