Sign in to follow this  
Murfman

This Video Blows MyMind

Recommended Posts



Three years ago XHT Labs published a video along with the following words on its website: “For some time now we are working on tools for smart scenery creation based on Open Street Maps data processed through advance algorithms to get as real as possible towns and villages. We’re trying to use most of the latest X-plane 10’s features to bring you new flight experience.”

 

On the 8th of February this year it published the above video with these words: “Scenery system possibilities test Central Europe region X-Plane 10.32 64-bit. Custom definitions of terrain, vegetation and autogen features (FOR, TER, AGS, AGB)”

 

Below is a link to their original video. As you can see, the newer video shows much greater improvement in the technology. I had assumed that they had given up on it; I’m glad to see they’re still at it! This technology could of course transform the X-Plane world. Anybody know Czeck? Maybe you could go on their forum and find out what’s going on with this. It would be really interesting to know.

 

Here is a link to their website: http://www.xht-labs.com/index.htm

 

The original video can be found here or on their website:

 

 

You may know XHT Labs as the company producing Prague (LKPR) for FSX/P3D and X-Plane 10.

 

Tom

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Help AVSIM continue to serve you!
Please donate today!

okay, first I tought world2xplane, but this is bringing it one step further.

 

I try to get similar results by regenerating the regions myself with world2xplane, using the buildings only config file (I really don't like the facades solution).

The results are convincing, especially with underlying photoscenery, but this far more realistic.

 

I wonder if they are going to do other regions as well ?

 

Tony, any news about world2xplane 0.7 beta :wub: ?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Very impressive :smile:, I hope they release the tool as opposed to just scenery generated with it so we can play. I've noticed a huge increase in map editing inside OSM in the Czech republic over the last few months, the country is quickly becoming one of the better mapped countries in OSM along with Germany.
 
The idea is similar to something I was working on last year when I toyed with idea of only using a subset of the OSM data (roads and zones) and instead generating towns and cities using simple algorithms. At first it was just objects, but the whole thing could be extended to actually place autogen blocks (i.e. Houses mixed with trees, cars, overlayed on top of textues). However couple of initial problems:
 
a) Generation time was huge, i.e. Around 20 minutes per 1x1 tile. 
b) Bad data. In the UK even simple residential zones are missing. The US is even worse. Without an external source of data outside of OSM, it wasn't going to work.
c) No artwork available for terrain. I again reached out for help several times, but nobody was interested in helping out and I'm no 3D or texture artist (I'm learning with my airport projects). The project basically died there. LR also didn't respond to my emails regarding documentation on the road and terrain format and other questions I had. It's not like I didn't try :(
 
Here are some screenshots of Manchester in the UK using the experimental W2XP build (Which has very little OSM data, just roads and zones):
 
Car_C152_II_v10_3.jpg
 
Car_C152_II_v10_4.jpg
The results aren't bad, they could be better, i.e. More intelligent algorithms, matching trees, etc.. but it show's it's possible if the artwork is done.
 
The big problem I found with W2XP and OSM is a lack of good and consistent data. It's fantastic in Germany and the Netherlands, but quite bad in the UK, Australia, and the US. The other issue is that people don't map the same (Germany is an exception to this ;-)), so whilst someone might map individual terraced buildings, the next person (in the same town) might map the entire terrace as one solid irregular building (Look at Preston in the UK). This looks awful when transcribed directly into X-Plane scenery. The same is true of farmland, etc.. There aren't really set standards of how one should map in OSM, so people just generally do and map what they like and it's incredibly difficult to translate all these different styles of mapping into convincing scenery. The amount of complaints I get from people saying "W2XP put a building here when it shouldn't" is unbelievable, the idea is you fix that yourself in OSM, but evidently even that's too much effort for some people.
 
Also, less variation in buildings is better as shown in the video. There are thousands of different buildings in world-models. If you limit it just to a small set (and decrease the tolerance of the footprint data significantly), then there is a large performance increase as hardware instancing really helps render the thousands of buildings. Also consistent roof colours and buildings make the scenery seem more realistic.
 

Tony, any news about world2xplane 0.7 beta  ?
 
0.7.0 is in a constant state of being experimented on, so it's generally not any good to release until I stop messing with things and stabilise it :smile:. I'm playing with using other data at the moment besides OSM (Which then puts the application out of the realms of most normal users). However, I think the project is pretty much on hold since Simheaven pulled the photoscenery, since W2XP without photoscenery looks like someone picked up a load of random houses and trees and threw them all over the default X-Plane scenery, and they don't line up.
 
Also, another thing to mull over is the fact that we could probably already achieve this by replacing the default artwork assets with something like HD Mesh v3 (which uses data from lots of sources besides OSM). If the terrain files were replaced along with the autogen artwork on a regional basis, then you'd get something similar to the above video. I'm surprised nobody has done this already (aka, the ORBX approach). This is basically extending the European Library further, and is waiting for the right person/company to come along and do it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@tony

This may sound crazy and I guess  is not technically possible, but is there any chance to read/understand satellite images by color patterns and from there "create" and place buildings ?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

 


This may sound crazy and I guess  is not technically possible, but is there any chance to read/understand satellite images by color patterns and from there "create" and place buildings ?

 

I know of two people who've tried doing this and looked into it, and they found several problems, mainly due to the colour differences in satellite imagery.  I also looked at working with Robert of G2XPL to recognise roof colours, so that the autogen placed would match the roof colours. If used with a combination of other data, e.g. location of residential zones, then I guess some clever piece of software could try and find out where the buildings are. It's certainly a great idea.

 

Also, has anyone played with Apple Maps 3D flyover?. That is just incredible and I think this is what we need in a flight simulator, and I really hope they license out the data to some future flight simulator. Basically, they fly over towns and cities at a low altitude using a very sensitive height radar and taking photographs, they then use some amazing software to build the entire area in 3D from the data. The effect is amazing. This site lists all areas currently which have this data http://flyovercities.com/. One of my favourites is the cliffs of moher in Ireland, they look simply stunning.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Didn't know Apple maps flyover. Just incredible.

Anyway I'm a little pesimistic about seeing something like this in a FS in the next .. say ten years at least..

I don't see hardware evolving as much as needed to handle it :(

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

 

Also, another thing to mull over is the fact that we could probably already achieve this by replacing the default artwork assets with something like HD Mesh v3 (which uses data from lots of sources besides OSM).

I did regenerate the alps with the config-buildings-only.xml together with UHDV1 mesh and got pretty good results.

My main problem at the moment is that the trees from world2xplane do not always match up with the landclass of the mesh.

Same problem with photoscenery, sometimes they match up perfectly, but more often they clatch and you get fields covered with trees (often seen in France).

 

Car_CT206H_1.png

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Apple is all about MONEY.  Don't expect anything from them in the public domain, which is sad.  :(

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this