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Guest BGercke

Microsoft ---- Give 'em a break !!!

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Just finished watching the Discovery Wings channel program on Flight Sim. The last 20 minutes showed a side by side comparison between FS2004 and CAE's full motion commerical flight simulators. When you look at FS2004 compared to CAE's multi million dollar commercial sim that uses the computing power of 500 P4's in series you realize what a great job MS has done given the the economic and technical constraints they operate under. In the interviews with the MS team you quickly realize the commitment and dedication of the team as well as the significant efforts that went into making FS2004 the most detailed sim yet....I certainly saw no underlying effort to give the user poor frame rates, poor flight models, etc. Bottom line is they have developed a decent product and although we all want the CAE simulator in our living rooms most of us are still $1,999,941 short. (by the way I don't work for MS or know any of the team members, or was a beta tester, etc, etc, etc,)Mark.

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The differnec is CAE's full motion commerical flight simulators are about 1,999,941 to 1 short of $50 customers, and so the playing field evens.And that is why we expect and deserve a first class product as well...:-eekBob (Lecanto, Fl)AMD, Athlon XP, 1800+MSI, K7T266 XP ProPC 2100 DDR, 1024 MBXP, Home Edition Elsa GLadiac 920, GF3/64Mb andPNY, Verto nVidia TNT 2-M64/32WD, 100 MB, 7200, Ultra 100Sound Blaster, Audigy MP3+CH Prod, VPP Yoke - Sound CardCH Prod, Pedals - Sound Card

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"playing field is even"CAE is building full scale simulators for airlines to train/test pilots who fly people in the real world. MicroSoft is building a computer game. You're right, we should demand the same first class product. (sigh)Watching the special, I think the fact FS does as much as it does on the wide variation of PC configurations is nothing short of amazing. Especially considering it is running with less than a 1/2% of the PC power of full scale simulators that admittedly render a complete aircraft and very limited scenery.ed

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Nothing short of amazing. The world, the universe, and certainly our PC's are amazing places."I used to fly...now I simulate"Cheers,bt

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RIIIIIIIIING!!!! That's your alarm clock telling you to wake up and join the rest of us in the REAL world!!!Using your logic, I should expect all the same features in my little Toyota Corolla as they get in a Hummer, because there are more toyota customers than Hummer customers?Oh, McDonalds should sell us all Filet Migon on their hamburgers because the customer ratio for McDonalds compared to Ruths Chris Steak house is so different and so that "evens the playing field"I keep hearing the same people who whine about getting a "quality" product.Great. Go get Airline Simulator 2 or Elite Flight Simulator, or some other simulator designed for training purposes and pay $199.00 and above for it. Be my guest.What is typical is that some of us have "diamond tastes" on a "rhinestone budget". That's fine. But don't expect someone to sell you diamonds for the cost of rhinestones. And what really amazes me, is that FS9 is more full featured than FS2002 Pro, and comes in at $15 less. That's ok. Customers are all the same. I work in a KVM (Keyboard Video Mouse) switch company, and it's always the $70.00 customers complaining because their product doesn't have ALL the bells and whistles as a product costing 10X as much.Yet, the the $700 customers never complain that the $70 dollar customers get 75% of the same functionality at 10% of the price.

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Hello "Toys R Us".I can tell you're not an economics nor a marketing student(maybe a professor, however) - you're not Alan Greenspan in disguise, are you?No comparisons to industrial training products were necessary, although I applaud Microsoft for challenging the public to do so.The only comparison necessary is the one that only a few of us can make (give age and experience). Just take a look back at the pre-MS flight simulators (e.g., sub-logic's bad cartoon show that ran on my Commodore 64). Ask a wise person to explain to you the MS Flight Sim 4.0 product, and what a joy it was to finally see airport and runway lights.I dare say you would never compare your girlfriend to Nicole Kidman ... Microsoft, my hat is off to you again; the $50 was well spent, and I will be ready for FS-10.

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If the comparison is drawn between FS and CAE, then your point is probably fair enough. However, it's perfectly legitimate and probably more relevant to make critical comparisons between FS and other PC-based flight simulators, including combat flight simulators (to the extent they share common elements). If and when those teams establish new standards in certain areas well ahead of MS, and if they use more efficient code to improve performance with the same hardware, then it's fair to wonder when MS--assuming they have a larger team (I believe they do), a greater market and far greater resources--will either catch up or take the lead. Obviously in some areas the MS team has the lead, and that would doubtless include weather phenomena. But there are other areas where other teams apparently with far less in the way of resources set standards well ahead of the MS team, and so there's a natural tendency to want a new version of FS to match or exceed those standards for realism. If it doesn't happen, and one is forced to wait another two years, then it's pretty understandable if people express some disappointment.

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One handicap Microsoft has to deal with is the loud demand for progress in every area but also backwards compatiblility. Other sims don't have to stay compatible with planes, scenery or whatever from three versions ago. I don't know how much of a factor that is in performance, and I am no programmer, but I would guess it has to be a factor. In addition, MS is modeling the world, not one or two combat zones.By the way, I really enjoyed the Flight Simulator episode as well. It gave a nice look "behind the scenes" at the developement of our favorite flight simmulator. It was nice to see real people that obviously care about what they do working on the program.Tony

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One only needs go back to Computer Aided Design where Computervision and Intergraph owned the CAD market with their multi-million dollar software and computer installation's for even a small 4 seat package.Along came lowly Autodesk with their $2000.00 package running on a standard PC. And people laughed at them. What fools !!!Three years later they owned the CAD market. And the "big boys were, and are, gone. And they (Autodesk) own that market to this day.Why....Because they listened to their customers and produced a first class product, top to bottom, at a cheap cost. And they sold zillions of copies to everyone, even "Joe Blow", as a result. And their products, too, are "open ended" for third party developers.And if they (MS)really believes, it's FS product is only a game, why all the legal disclaimers ? Why have they brought parts of the real aviation industry and users "on board" ? Do you get that with a baseball game ?Don't get me wrong, I like Microsoft and FS Products, but Microsoft has a long history of producing flawed and sometimes inferior products, with tech support that is the industry's worst. And they exibit this behavior mostly in markets that they basically "own". Still I must still say that fundamentally I like them.But I see nothing wrong with pointing out to them, where I see that they can do a better job. One needs to look no further than FS Navigator 4.51 or 4.6 and compare it to the Navigation tools in the history of FS version products to get my message. It's been awful ! It's still not great. And this the one part of the program that even a novice can write quality code for.Just because they provide the "hooks" for third party people, doesn't mean they can then lay all responsibility's for a quality job on those people for things that should come "as standard" in the base program.Of course they can do anything they want, but so can I. And I am.Bob (Lecanto, Fl)AMD, Athlon XP, 1800+MSI, K7T266 XP ProPC 2100 DDR, 1024 MBXP, Home Edition Elsa GLadiac 920, GF3/64Mb andPNY, Verto nVidia TNT 2-M64/32WD, 100 MB, 7200, Ultra 100Sound Blaster, Audigy MP3+CH Prod, VPP Yoke - Sound CardCH Prod, Pedals - Sound Card

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I agree with you that "... pointing out to them, where I see that they can do a better job" is actually a good thing. That's why it keeps getting better.You may have more of a cynicism toward "big business", and I do too. I agree that they reach a point in their respective life-cycles when they can no longer be managed (like the weight of my 425 pound friend, "OB"). Just look at the "####" that finally escaped from that anal cavity in NASA - called "management".Microsoft's lawyers would have been completely derelict if they did not caution the public about the "entertainment" value of this product, since even real-world pilots play "Russian roulette" with their and others' lives too often.I wish you a long life of fun with the FS products, such that you will one day look back and say "I remember when" with a big smile (like I have today).The MSFS glass is at least 1/2 full (not 1/2 empty).

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I hate to be a kill joy, but can we talk about something else!You will never get everyone in complete agreement that FS9 is a great sim. I personally think it is, and have no idea how to make it even better with the current technology available to us at a decent price.Anyway, I saw the Wings program to and thought how cool it was to see the different platforms of simulators. But my machine at home will never compare to the simulators that use hydraulic lifts and tons of power. Maybe someday.....

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Why have they brought>parts of the real aviation industry and users "on board" ? Do>you get that with a baseball game ?>Bob,On this particular issue, I must point out, that yes, you do get this quality in a baseball, football, and basketball game. I've been to EA Sports in California, seen Marshall do his song and dance, seen Allan Iverson do his crossover for six hours, just to make sure they got it "right". I watched Randy and Roger throw until they were sore, and I watched Troy Glaus swing his bat more times than I could count, all in the attempt of recreating the most realistic, and accurate, sports simulation. And for the low, low price of $39.99, it can be yours!!!! I'm obviously not trying to sell it, but just thought that would go well. I clearly understand your point, but you need to understand that because EA brings in professional athletes to consult and help in design in a game, it is still a game. The average person is not going to say, "Because I can play this game, I can go out and compete on that level." That is, for the most part, the most asinine thing one could say. The same applies to Flight Sim. Just the same, the average person on this game wouldn't know the first thing about how to start the engines of a LearJet, let alone land a 777 in "crisis". The game has been "dumbed down" to make it enjoyable for ALL AGES. Though measures have been taken to make the game more realistic, Microsoft will be able to keep the variety of aircraft, the level of detail, and weather, and be able to match the quality of a Full Motion Profeesional Leval Simulator only when we have a 20 GB processor able to keep up with it. >And if they (MS)really believes, it's FS product is only a>game, why all the legal disclaimers ?The sad, sad truth to this is, very simply, protection from retards. And I don't mean legally retarded. I mean the guy who thinks because he flys Flight Sim, can get into an airplane and know how to fly it. If he were to live through his "chance encounter" with the laws of Gravity, he's the same guy that goes to Microsoft to exact his pound of flesh for his retardedness, making his retarded claim of, "Emotional Distress, Physical Injury, and False Advertising." Sorta like that retarded lady sueing McDonald's for drinking a HOT cup of coffee. Must a cup say it has hot liquid in it for you to UNDERSTAND that it is HOT!!!??? Apparently, yes. And these are my two cents. Regards,BGercke

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