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Guest Calb

Developers in bed with MS?

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Guest Mapper

Hi all-After reading some posts, I wonder if some of the MSFS beta testers are addon developers. I remember reading about some of ProjectAI's members were beta testers. In fact, didn't one of them convince MS to make assignable parking spots? Also, think I read a while ago that an addon developer meet with some MSFS team members. If MS beta testers are also developers, would that be a conflict of interest?No flame please, just wonder about these things sometimes.Mike

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I'd say that would be a good thing. I mean that would only result in addons working better with FS.


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Guest Mapper

I agree, in terms of it helping make addon's more realistic. However, is it fair? If beta testers are payware developers, then they make profits based on inside information.

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Let's try to apply some common sense. First, external Beta Testers aren't under the employ of the company they are testing for. They are often asked to participate and others beg to participate. And, they are a cross section of the community which they represent. Do developers participate in betas? You bet! Is that being "in bed" with the beta's sponsor or a conflict of interest? Hardly. If I am writing software for the restaurant industry and want it to interface to the Credit Card auth center for real time CC processing, I'm going to go out of my way to invite the vendor who writes the interface to my beta. I will also go out of my way to invite the cook who has never used a Restaurant Point of Sale system. And I'll accept the unknown vendor who asks to participate because they want to see how their latest touch screen monitor works with my system.IOTW, Betas try to seek a cross section of the community and that means those who support a product with their own work, and those who support the product as customers.-John

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Exactly to the point John:-) If a platform developer such as the MSFS team were to refuse support/beta testing rights to addon developers be they freeware or payware, it would seem that they would place their platform at a disadvantage.Let's hope that the MSFS platform developers would offer even more support/beta testing rights to addon developers so that everyone benefits.It seems that such a relationship would help addon developers provide the best products possible for the community.:-)


Best Regards,

Ron Hamilton ASEL

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Guest Peter Sidoli

>If MS beta testers are also developers, would that be a conflict of interest?

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Guest Mapper

I understand what everyone is saying, but it seems strange to me that MS would allow seperate payware companies to see future versions of FS. Well, hey...maybe that's why I'm not in the business! :)

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Maybe not ;-) Seriously, who better to test than those who are intimately familiar with the sim's inner workings? Makes perfect sense to me.

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Guest Peter Sidoli

MikeMy reply was only lighthearted :-) Microsoft run an open policy which means that they want individuals to use the product as a creative tool.A few years ago there was very little commercial ware and mainly freeware where people could offer the results of their creative labours for all to enjoy.Infact so strong was the freeware element that there was an almost dislike of any commercial involvement.Now everything has changed as creating say a full aircraft with VC and to the full avionics and flight engine capability has put such a project out of reach of most and requiring a team specialising in each area.In many ways this has somehow gone away from the original goals of the open MSFS as not only a sim but a creative tool. MS need to either bring the product back to the individual by introducing easy to use tools so that a lot of the labour and skill intensive requirements are removed or accept that the openess of the product is now feeding a large commercial market.There is arguement that some commercial addons are now the price of the original programme and I could see that going to double the price in the future.More strange to me is that MS have not licenced people using the base product as a lucrative business? but maybe thats to come?Peter

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Hi,I've been developing FS freeware since 1996, so I understand the feeling of loss you express re. the old days when freeware and complete openess was the preferred option.However, while the early FS community did have a goal of an open (and free) FS, MS was never committed to that, specifically in regards to freeware vs payware. I think (quite properly) that MS feels it's in their best interest to help anyone who can create significant additional content for the sim, freeware and payware. With the increasing complication of FS projects, they are naturally turning to payware companies with that expertise.They also know that payware companies *in general* are going to be around longer, not violate their NDA, and put more effort into making the next version of FS as good as it can be. I have set up several beta tests of my freeware stuff, and the response was usually pretty pitiful. Many downloads, little feedback. I know for a fact that payware developers are already heading to Redmond, getting the inside scoop, and signing NDA agreements. I haven't heard of any freeware authors getting that treatment at this point (they might be, though). I see no reason why MS should announce any of this to the world, and jeopardize their competitive position with possible rivals.I feel that the days of freeware aircraft are not over, but becoming very limited. There are only so many people (or groups of people) willing to put the effort and time into a project that might take a year but yield nothing to them but a few thank you's. And managing freeware groups with no power to force anything often leads to lots of arguing with little getting done, or people leaving. Through FS98 I felt it was no problem to create a complete Plane/Panel/Sound package by myself. We used simple tools and created simple aircraft. We used default gauges. Sound packages were small. I would never dream of it now. FS is just getting too complicated for the old days - kiss them goodbye!Hope this helps,--Tom GibsonCal Classic Propliner Page: http://www.calclassic.comFreeflight Design Shop: http://www.freeflightdesign.comDrop by! ___x_x_(")_x_x___

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Guest davidvoogd

I think having addon developers of any kind on the MS betas is very beneficial to everyone, they can help MS design the new platform to be easier for making addons, which benefits everyone, and they are probably the most knowledgable people on the sim outside of the the FS Dev team on the sim too.Either way I think MS should take on a few experienced addon beta testers. (Psst - MS - I'd love to test FS10) :-hah

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>>If MS beta testers are also>developers, would that be a conflict of interest?Before you ask such question pause a little a bit and see if it makes sense. Where exactly would this conflict of interest be?. Conflict of interest is not an empty slogan - unless you can articulate where there may be a conflict - there is none.Michael J.WinXP-Home SP2,AMD64 3500+,Abit AV8,Radeon X800Pro,36GB Raptor,1GB PC3200,Audigy 2http://www.precisionmanuals.com/images/forum/747400.jpghttp://www.hifisim.com/images/asv_beta_member.jpg


Michael J.

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>>I would never dream of it now. FS is just getting too>complicated for the old days - kiss them goodbye!Which is why a rival like X-Plane, might never catch up! Other than that, I'm waiting for a complete simulated Garmin 1000 glass panel system, with all working options. And throw in the recently released touch pad system to go with it! Should only take a good developer a year or two to program, let alone a plane to go with it... :-hah L.Adamson

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Guest Mapper

easy. Who says the developers that MS invites to be beta testers ONLY produce addon's for MSFS? Didn't PMDG produce an aircraft for Fly? Would you want a group of developers seeing your future FS features if they freely walk to X-plane later? If the addon makers limited their products to MS only, I see no problem. I sure as heck would not want to share information with someone if they could take it else where. NDA or not.

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>Would you want a group of developers seeing>your future FS features if they freely walk to X-plane later? >If the addon makers limited their products to MS only, I see>no problem. I sure as heck would not want to share>information with someone if they could take it else where. >NDA or not.Then it would still have nothing to do with conflict of interest. Perhaps industrial espionage which would be covered by NDA like you say. Find somewhere a definition what conflict of interest is. Conflict of interest would mean that developer for some reason is torn between giving you a quality product and something else, whatever this something else would be. Michael J.WinXP-Home SP2,AMD64 3500+,Abit AV8,Radeon X800Pro,36GB Raptor,1GB PC3200,Audigy 2http://www.precisionmanuals.com/images/forum/747400.jpghttp://www.hifisim.com/images/asv_beta_member.jpg


Michael J.

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