Sign in to follow this  
Guest lemonadedrinker

Timeline feature in FSX?

Recommended Posts

I was going to post it in New Freeways ans such ... thread [http://forums.avsim.net/dcboard.php?az=show_mesg&forum=248&topic_id=3715&mesg_id=3715&page=]but I decided it's worth a separate post.The highways, as well as bridges, high-rises and some other scenery elements, belong to relatively recent past. I was wondering if a timeline is going to be introduced in FSX for those objects. For example, if you want to fly first postal routes on a good old Jenny, then you dial something like year 1925 in dialog box and you don't get highways. In MSFS 2004 you can dial whatever date you like but it only changes seasons, not scenery objects. The timeline is something I would really like to see in MSFS (I thought it would be a major feature in COF but obviously I was wrong), because you can "fit" the history of aviation very consistently into one package. Of course, in involves putting a time-tag (date of creation and probably date of destruction) for many things like scenery objects (downtown buildings, bridges, airport terminals), AI traffic, etc, and maybe having different AFCADs for the same airport. But it's worth the effort, as it will open up an option for a third-party "retro" design: retro-traffic, pre-industrial scenery, first terminals, even pre-war cities, NYC twin towers etc.Am I talking nonsense, or did you discuss it somewhere already? I'm more than certain this feature will be incorporated one day, but I was wondering if it's going to be FSX? Thanks for commenting on that,S.V.

Share this post


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

So you really think this idea is really offensive for Microsoft? :) Does Hal speaks for all his team? tdragger, anyone?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes I think is a bad idea for an out of the box product... I am sure it can be done in FS2002, and FS9, but let's leave that for a third party scenery developer with a lot of time in his hands.They are trying to concentrate in the stuff that is relevant for a new installment in a franchise.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think that blog was commenting some of the suggestions of that post which indeed were a bit strange (flying in 1400AD?!?)In principle I support the time dependent scenery scheme. There is limited support in FS already (eg Berlin Wall is a famous example), however that's only objects but not terrain.The current work around would be to create different scenery entries, eg Europe 1930 and enable/disable sceneries as you go.The main problem is probably not the technology itself, but data availibility and the added time in scenery design. Not many people will go through the effort to create time dependend scenery and people that do can integrate the scenery using the current system (as I described above). Hence, the question is: is it really worth adding this technology?Don't get me wrong, I'd love to be able to see changing land use and transport networks, or see airports changing through time, but I think that there is too much work involved to create such scenery, hence the FS team may feel that it's something that doesn't need to be addressed and I wouldn't blame them.Cheers,Christian

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

>I'm more than certain this feature will be incorporated one>day, but I was wondering if it's going to be FSX? Time traveling is not as real as it gets. :(Marco

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

>So you really think this idea is really offensive for>Microsoft? :) Does Hal speaks for all his team? tdragger,>anyone?I know there is a harsh tone to the post on a whole, but that particularly related to this is:"The problem, of course, is that we already build everywhere, it gets almost infinitely more complicated when you ask us to build everywhen."I thought it answered your suggestion pretty neatly.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm not talking about plate tectonics, erosion of the mountains, and change of river beds!! That would be nuts! No, I'm talking about new functionality, which would give way to further development by end users and add-on developers, in the same way we replaced default AI traffic by realistic flights. Flying in 1400 AD is ridiculous to me, the only objective of that timeline feature is to provide realistic flight environment to historical flights. Have you tried flying Wrights Flyer scenario with your AI traffic above? How can you immerse yourself in historic flights if you see the interstates and skyscrapers? Once a time engine implemented for FS, all current objects can migrate with "everywhen" time tag, and then we can refine them based on common logic historic facts. For starters, we can have 3-4 basic epochs that would correspond to major stages in aviation and technology. Simple example of objects with defined timespan: do not load BGL with interstates if the time is set before 50s. Do not close Meigs Field runway before 2002. Display WTC in New York after 1977 and before 2001. Do not load powerlines BGL before year 19xx... The immediate problem I see is multiple BGLs for all time-dependent objects. Well, give it as "everywhen", and we'll provide a timeline for it, and upload it to avsim! Of course, it is not the last minute request for FSX but I do not see why it is impossible to implement, that's why I was interested if MS team gave it a thought. They do have date dial that goes all the way back in time in dialog box already :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

New slogan:MSX on Vista is the Ultimate Flying Time Machine: Now you can REALLY experience a Century of Flight! :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I would say that Hal speaks for Hal, just like I do on my blog (sort of ). From the team's point of view we have considered it but there are a couple of challenges. First is the work required. Not only would we have to tag each object with a date range we would probably have to add addition content. Second is how to decide what to put where (or when, as it were). We don't have good data on when every road, city and building was constructed. It would be a shot in the dark at best to do this for the whole world.However I could see adding the ability for 3rd parties to do this and maybe even adding some limited content ourselves. We'd had to have a pretty compelling design though. We wouldn't just do it "for the heck of it."

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

tdragger:thanks for reply,I know it is a complex feature, but it may be easier to start if you give all objects the time tag and migrate everything with a default time tag="everywhen", which is essentialy the existing FS world. And then we end users dig in and provide our custom timespan for every significant object in our immediate vicinity... Anyway, it is nice that you think of it, because it IS a great feature, and you can line up a whole bunch of other related features (historic missions, e.t.c). But you are right, one needs to be careful with initial design (as in everything else though) Regards,S.V.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wasn't that possibility there in Flight Simulator 98? I remember being able to set a specific date and for instance I'd be able to see the Berlin Wall or Kilauea's eruption.Right now, if the guys at FS were to ever re-incorporate that kinda stuff, I'd like to see a representation of the Mount St. Helens area prior to its May 18th, 1980 eruption. But... lol..

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We did have a general purpose time-based scenery system long ago but we had to remove it to make way for new capabilities. The volcano still works, though, because the effects system still supports the notion of date/time ranges. That's how we get the fireworks in Vegas to go off only at night.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

tdragger,As you mentioned nighttime fireworks effect, I immediately thought of another important time-dependent features such as tower operating hours. In reality, when the tower closes, surrounding class D usually becomes class E (with some exceptions maybe), which changes things for both VFR and IFR nighttime flights. Another example of dynamic airspace is TFR. If someone like AOPA is willing to sponsor downloading real-world TFRs the same way we get weather from Jeppesen (and the same way you get graphic TFRs in AOPA FlightPlanner), the realism of flight training will rise dramatically. We can argue about the need in such features, related government security issues, etc, but the fact is: up to half-dozen pilots violate TFRs every month or so, and AOPA spends so many efforts to minimize that number. But all I'm talking here is just an example of time-dependent design application to some FS elements, from stand-point of using FS for flight training. What do you guys think?Cheers,S.V.EDIT: surely anough, for all these features to work properly, the AI traffic should fly flightplans not the great circles (i.e. not violate TFRs, ADIZ, RAs, etc...), but that's another issue, which, I hope, will be once solved.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Tom:I checked your Classic Propliner page, it looks great! I heard of many retro design projects, and there is a bunch of 60,70,80's timetables, liveries and AI planes around. Even modern timetables ought to be updated at least yearly, that's exactly what PAI and MRAI sites are trying to do by providing list of FPs for 2004, 2005 etc. It can be realized more consistently with "time layering" as you called it. CheersS.V.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi, Golden Wings by Lynn and Bill Lyons does a little of the time line thing I guess by getting rid of everything I think past 1937. It was very difficult to find any airports from the map or gps (they are still shown) as most of the big ones didn't exist then and the ones still there are mainly grass strips. Andy.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

>So you really think this idea is really offensive for>Microsoft? :) Does Hal speaks for all his team? tdragger,>anyone?As Tdragger notes below, yes "Hal speaks for Hal"! :)However, if you got the impression I was somehow against the idea of time-based scenery, you need to read my post again. What was (and is) offensive to me was A) "MD"'s ignorance and :( his suggestions about Hiroshima, etc. Here's a direct quote from my article:"MD: At the very least ya should make it easier for scenery designers to create time-reactive scenery.Hal: Since I

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