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dal330200

Quality Control for Developers?

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I was wondering if MSFS plans on having some kind of quality control system in place for addon developers.  One of the biggest frustrations that I've encountered over the years has been buying buggy products from developers who promise the world, but rarely deliver.  They promise amazing updates and fixes in later versions which sometimes never materialize.  They toss in some minor bug fixes but never make any significant changes.  At the end of the day, we get strung along, for years in some cases, waiting for products that never work, and sometimes cause more problems along the way.  I'm not going to name any companies, but most of us probably can come up with a few examples from past experience. 

I get the idea of buyer beware and doing due diligence before whipping out my credit card.  However, I wonder if a lot of this guesswork can be eliminated by setting standards and controls that developers must follow.  Is this a possibility?

Thanks for your attentiveness to the community.  I've voiced my angst on some of the facebook groups about how developers for both platforms have failed to listen to us.  I really appreciate what's on the horizon, and as a simmer since fs2, I can't wait for this to come out. 

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I’d much rather see them preventing add-ons from conflicting with the base sim or with other add-ons for that matter.

Only one “package” (mesh, textures, scenery) per area, period. And an easy way to install/remove the add-on, which must never touch FS 2020 folders and files...

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We are stepping into an unknown world with this new simulator. To say even MSFS2020 will be without bugs and problems and many updates and patches will be naive. Once the dust has settled and we get a stable simulator, the modern day code and technologies will make it easier for developers to make a stable product as well. I suspect there will be a lot less variables and hacks needed to be done to make a workaround as developers have to do now.


Is it done yet? When will it be released? Will it be freeware or payware? How much will it be? Any updates on the progress? Will it work for FSX? What's the minimum requirements? Can I be a beta tester?

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I am extremely wary (hostile would be more to the point) of what you propose, John.

I've honestly not experienced any of the dire problems you describe. I am a moderate buyer (about 60 sceneries, a dozen aircraft, a couple of utilities) . As you rightly say my rule are, buyer beware and doing due diligence before whipping out /.../credit card.  Common sense helps a lot too.

I do not want MS selecting what they think is good, even technically good, for me. I am well able to make my own mind without being guided by the hand.

MS "control"  may also have two effects. It will not be free for the selected outside developers, so prices will be higher and some developers will be discouraged (passively or actively). May I add that in a corporate world ravaged by political correctness and the fear of lawsuits, giving control to MS is not exactly a good idea.

I am not sure to understand what you mean by standards. The SDK is de facto a set of standards. The last  SDK were imperfect. Let's wait to see how the new one is. It should define the procedures to insert an addon into FS20.  

We have seen since the days of 2K2 a formidable explosion of creativity, the spontaneous creation a free market exempt of regulation. Let's not kill that. Do we want MS to become kind of an EA in our hobby. I don't.

 

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Dominique

Simming since 1981 -  4770k@3.7 GHz with 16 GB of RAM and a 1080 with 8 GB VRAM running a 27" @ 2560*1440 - Warthog HOTAS - MFG pedals - MFS Standard version with Steam

 

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Just now, domkle said:

I do not want MS selecting what they think is good, even technically good, for me. I am well able to make my own mind without being guided by the hand.

Exactly. Let Microsoft keep doing what they are doing and that is working on providing us with the greatest simulator they can give us. They do not need to have a say in the add-on market. There will be good ones, and bad ones, that is a fact of life. 

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Is it done yet? When will it be released? Will it be freeware or payware? How much will it be? Any updates on the progress? Will it work for FSX? What's the minimum requirements? Can I be a beta tester?

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Would be nice to have some quality control but it has too many drawbacks in such a "popular" environment. It is working quite nicely in DCS (but that is a niche of the niche).

You can be as careful as you want before making a purchase but you can't always control everything. And i still got my Milviz Ka350I to remind me of that (Bought it in FSX and never got my hands on it, when i finally could it was for P3D only while i had passed on XP)


Chock 1.1: "The only thing that whines louder than a jet engine is a flight simmer."

 

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Yeah, I've worked quality control for technical systems for ages... it's a double edged sword.

Where third party developers are concerned, use their reputation and if they don't really have one then it's best to wait until a product has been out for a couple weeks before making a decision to purchase it.

Besides, quality control comes with two types or prices, a financial one, and one that limits and can inhibit innovation.

 


Dave-Aerosoft-2021-Small.png

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I guess I never thought of that side of the equation.  Makes sense.  However, I guess I just want to see products that are represented honestly and work accordingly if they're going to be licensed for use in MSFS. 

Edited by dal330200

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First of all an official quality filter has a cost and that affect the product price or subscription price, second, a marketplace would be probably unofficial, so there wont be any quality filter as you demand, plus it is the consumer in this case you to be responsable in what you purchase and you can have other users ratings as a reference before any purchase.

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Implementing quality control will absolutely shatter the payware market. We both know why. Only a select few devs will remain. In the wake of this new sim, there will be a lot of aspiring new devs who will put out mediocre products but will be committed to improving their stuff over the time. At the end of the day its your decision to buy or not. Imagine the backlash if they ever decided to implement QC and god forbid a product or two was taken down due to word not allowed quality. Thats just unnecessary drama that Asobo/Microsoft dont want. Although they should implement a rating system for a product driven by community votes. Should give enough info to customers where to put their money at.

Edited by Baber20

Baber

 

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Instead of a quality control there should be a 1 hour demo. One hour should be enough to try out an scenery or plane (or maybe 15 minutes for sceneries and one hour for planes to prevent people abusing that to just use the demo for one landing).

Therefore everybody could make his own opinion


Guenter Steiner
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Betatester for: A2A, Hifi, Simstarter, AivlaSoft, LORBY 
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Demo's are a nice idea, especially if we're going to essentially be paid beta testers for things.  I think it was Imaginesim that did it for some of their sceneries.  Good idea.

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I think it would be a very bad idea to have one entity decide for us who is allowed to develop add-ons and who doesn't. That choice should be made by the users.

If someone buys a crappy add-on because he couldn't be bothered to do a little research beforehand, that's his problem.

 

 

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With MS open source 3D model format they announced there is no quality control, no copy protection either.  Like I said before, if Microsoft copy protect their streaming terrain data then they need to give developers the opportunity to protect their content ... I've heard no mention of this topic.  Open Source = Open Mess ... anyone jumping in to modify code, 3D objects, files ... it would make the current situation we have today even worse if MSFS continues the Open Source route ... been there, done that, no thanks.

And then we have Microsoft's own OS and development tools (Visual Studio) which in themselves are full of bugs that developers have to work-around or wait for a fix.

But like Dave said, quality control adds costs to the development effort and "cost" seems to be a BIG issue for those who purchase products ... are people willing to pay more for a higher degree of quality?

What I would like to see is a way to ensure that 3rd party developers can't step on each other's toes, can't hack into EXEs/DLLs to get something done because the SDK can't accomplish it, and their products are fully isolated.  But how do you stop developers from hacking into EXEs/DLLs to accomplish a task which they will NOT share because it would take away their product advantage against the competition?

But I do tend to agree, that products from MS, Lockheed, Laminar, Orbx, PMDG, etc. etc. should be more thoroughly tested before release ... but that takes more time and money and end users often don't want to pay more nor wait longer ... this seems to be the case with MS as we may eventually get a Tech Alpha 1 which is how end users are solicited to test a products for free ... think of it as a shared responsibility.

Cheers, Rob.

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Hello all,

The best form of quality control, is wide and early publicity, through the forum and elsewhere, for all and any, bad products. If devs want to sell a bad product, let us, the consumers, put the word out loudly and rapidly. I think this is the best form of quality control, bearing in mind this is after the fact. 

I can not see any form of MSFS controlling quality of 3PDs work amounting to much more than a monopoly. Living in Indonesia, I can see lots of room here for some form of corruption. 

Unfortunately, most developers, (wanting to control their own product) will have varying concepts of what constitutes a "good" product and this will never change.

Given the costs involved in bringing an addon to the market, I believe that a bad product, widely publicised, will soon put those to bed. However, this has to be in the form of positive remarks bearing a negative content. There is a nice way of doing this LOL

It would be nice to have a "demo version" of all add-ons but, if I was trying to sell a suspect  product, I do not think I would be offering anything remotely resembling a demo ... would you?

Regards

Tony


Tony Chilcott.

 

My System. Motherboard. ASRock Taichi X570 CPU Ryzen 9 3900x (not yet overclocked). RAM 32gb Corsair Vengeance (2x16) 3200mhz. 1 x Gigabyte Aorus GTX1080ti Extreme and a 1200watt PSU.

1 x 1tb SSD 3 x 240BG SSD and 4 x 2TB HDD

OS Win 10 Pro 64bit. Simulators ... FS2004/P3Dv4.5/Xplane.DCS/Aeroflyfs2...MSFS to come for sure.

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