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Cactus521

Will I ever tire of simming?

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After more than three decades with this hobby I wonder about it.  I have tired of buying payware, not because I do not like it, I just like to budget and not get aircraft similar to what I already have (who needs a 172 for P3D when you have a nice default in Xplane, and a 177 for P3D, lol).  I will buy more, to be assured, a few titles a year, like the upcoming Carenado Falcon 50 and Embraer 120.  But flying the sims themselves, especially since I do not get real airtime enough, I just do not tire of and I try to at least get an hour or two a day in.  I do not like flights over two hours, and depending on the aircraft's speed I pick city pairs one to two hours apart--like SFO to Salt Lake City in my Citation 550 or Xplane Aerobask Eclipse, or Medford to Napa in my Cessna 177 or 337.  Better yet, the beautiful Bishop to Reno route along the eastern crest of the Sierra, Mono Lake and the Owen and Carson Valleys. 

I wonder how many of us ask this same question.  When I do need a simming break I play cards, text friends on Facebook, or play Chess Titans, or watch Hulu, old TV shows such as Lost in Space or Land of the Giants (loved Irwin Allen back in the 60's and 70's).  But I have the sims and I use them as often as I can, as much as my heart will allow and I have enjoyed seeing the future of simming way back in the 80's when I bought a book on 3D graphics at a San Francisco bookstore and saw what Evans and Sutherland were doing then on mainframes, now outclassed by our PC sims like Aerofly, Xplane and P3D.

I also like the pace of major releases from the developers, especially Xplane which supports major versions with upgrades, like the coming 11.30 upgrade, for a long while as a service and courtesy to us users.  Same with Lockheed Martin and the newer sim developers, and the add-on developers, like my recent Aerobask Eclipse upgrade, a fine aircraft add-on company for Xplane.  Not just aircraft sims, but my other sim of choice, No Limits Coaster 2, has been supported by its developer, Ole Lange, for years with fantastic upgrades for his users and is arguably one of the coolest sims around, so framerate friendly on modern computers like most of ours today.

Anyway I feel it is a great hobby, cheaper than rock tumbling lol, or collecting gemstones and easier on the hands than crocheting, which I actually used to do when I was a small boy, making afghans for my mother when my fingers were more nimble than the 50 something years old they are today....

John

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I started around 1982, have had a few breaks along the way but had every release along the way. My last break was around 2006 when FSX first came out. I remember buying FSX when it first released but I didn't install it until 2011. From 2011 I have been more into it then ever as computers caught up to the demands of FSX and now P3D, I never imagined back in 1982 things would get this good, back then it seemed good enough

Edited by Matthew Kane

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The thing about P3D/XP specifically is, they are in a constant state of catch up with reality. Always some technology or realism features to look forward to.

 

 

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2 hours ago, Matthew Kane said:

I started around 1982, have had a few breaks along the way but had every release along the way. My last break was around 2006 when FSX first came out. I remember buying FSX when it first released but I didn't install it until 2011. From 2011 I have been more into it then ever as computers caught up to the demands of FSX and now P3D, I never imagined back in 1982 things would get this good, back then it seemed good enough

You started two years earlier than I.  I was flying to Europe in 1984 when I read an article about Flight Simulator 2 which said at the time that it was the most popular title being sold, in a business magazine I read on TWA, US News and World Report.  When I returned from Europe I balked on buying a computer but with my brother urging me to do so--he knew me and knew my career would end up in computing, even though I worked in a retail store back then, Flight Simulator 2 was the excuse I used to buy a computer.  But I took up computer programming on my C64 immediately, buying every book and magazine I could find, my favorite was on C64 internals and I would PEEK and POKE with reckless abandon, sometimes crashing my system or getting weird characters on my screen as I could see the "heartbeat" of the OS in numerical values.  I bought Assembler for the C64 and using Binary Encoded Decimals wrote a program to find Prime Numbers much faster than basic ever could.  From simple addition and subtraction I wrote multiplication and division algorithms using byte shifting.   I had a macro assembler which allowed one to give logical labels to machine code.  I was amazed back then how small programs were--Flightsim could fit on a floppy, which I had to backup using a bitcopy program before I wore it out.

I bought every scenery add-on I could get my hand on for FS II.  I also found a way to tweak the Piper's flaps with a negative value so it could fly at 200mph and cover ORD to JFK, rather cool, my first sim hack ever, LOL.  I eventually sold my C64 to a small boy rather than throw it away, for much less than I bought it for but it lived on and brought him some joy.  I moved onto an Atari ST for the next version of Flight Simulator, which ran so smoothly compared to FS2 but had a bug, it flew at the wrong speed, too slow compared to the real airspeed.  I found a way to hack the Atari's clock speed so it would run faster, the first overclock I ever did on a computer and only one I ever did, as it made the program prone to the occasional and famous Atari "Cherry Bomb", Atari's version of the Windows BSOD.  Later I met Nolan Bushnell of Atari, he stayed at my hotel, he had a dry sense of humor and said he switched to selling binoculars from owning Atari.  Met him and Bill Gates, the only two computer greats I have ever met and spoken with, by their staying at my hotels.  Bill Gates was one of the coolest people I have ever met and dealt with as a guest, so humble and not intimidating as one might expect a wealthy man to be to an hourly front office supervisor.  I told my general manager we should comp his room and the French GM said "Who is Bill Gates?".  Since he was visiting wine country I offered him comp wine but he politely refused.  He drove his own car, an old classic 60's car, cream colored but I cannot remember the make, it was not a Sports Car.  All of my staff were amazed by his humility--this was back in 1987, the day before the big stock market crash.  Just a month later I flew to Europe on my first Eurail trip, it was a fun year, 1987 since I flew to Reno, drove to Socal with my father, flew to DC, met Bill Gates, and went to Europe, lol!

John

Edited by Cactus521

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