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Forkboy2

Excellent 3D terrain visualization with FSX - Flickr link

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Hello everyone!Having recently overcome performance problem with my Google Earth interface to FSX, I took out a few planes on leisurely flights. During these flights I have just witnessed the best realtime terrain visualization I have ever seen on any system or on any media (including cinema, I think). And it happened right in my aging PC in HD resolution at good frame rate using a "game" called Flight Simulator X. I am still awestruck and speechless.I have created a flickr photo set at 1600x1200 pixels containing 56 images. Enjoy the slideshow or look at those images one by one. If you log in to flickr, you can set preferences so the images and slideshow appear larger by default.The location is (mostly) Oahu, Hawaii. Here is the link to the photosethttp://www.flickr.com/photos/71882461@N00/...57594407535533/Usually high resolution photoscenery suffers greatly from appearing two dimensional - especially if the terrain is mostly flat. However if some high resolution elevation data is available, such photoscenery can reveal stunning detail. Geological formations appear life-like and real.Please understand that I am not going to make either the software or any of the the photoscenery available. Right now there is too much of a legal issue with the imagery. The imagery itself is copyrighted, but in the form of a screenshot (and projected onto a 3D landscape) I consider posting these images fair use.The ingredients that lead to these stunning screenshots:- a 10m freeware terrain mesh for Hawaii from fsproject.com (thanks!)- 30 hours of work invested in an interface between FSX and Google Earth (see other threads covering this topic)- 1m/pixel resolution satellite imagery courtesy of Google.The hardware used was:- an aging dual Athlon PC (2.0 GHz) with 2GB RAM and 7800GS 256MB AGP graphics card.- A mac mini for proxying the images to FSX through Samba, connected through Firewire with the PC.- A Dell 24 inch display at 1920x1200 pixels.

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Maybe you could publish a white paper or even sell the "How to" manual. Thats legal.:)Manny

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This is a very innovative development. Major problem is however the variable quality (ie resolution) of photo textures outside of the US. In Australia the quality varies in the major cities from very good to bloody aweful elswhere. In time Google images will no doubt improve.But given the legal issue it seems a bit like trying to ride a dead horse at present. I did hear a rumour somewhere that Microsoft might be going to attempt something similar. When and if this happens (if ever) then your approach would seem to be a good way of interfacing FS11 with photo textures, if the quality issue can be overcome in the meantime.Re WOZ

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This is really incredible work... I might be wrong, but I think that the imagery remains the legal property of the original distributor (such as Digital Globe) regardless of the viewer you are using to look at it. So I think that even imagery coming from Microsoft Virtual Earth would have the same distribution constraints as Google Earth. I would really like to learn more about this, because these programs have so much potential for creating sceneries for FS.-Scott

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You are right.In case Microsoft chooses to include (or stream) the imagery in Flight Simulator XI or XII, they would probably have to nogotiate licensing terms with their satellite data provider.But I think this is the future. Why try to squeeze the world on a DVD if you can stream a more complete version from the Internet ;)

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I have just looked at the satellite data that is distibuted through MSN Virtual Earth. In many areas, including the continental US, it looks more cohesive than Google's satellite material. You can hardly discern the boundaries of various satellite passes, everything seems to be matched in color and brightness. However when zooming out the MSN material suddenly switches to lower resolution data, which appears in a completely different color shade, that's a bit of a problem. You don't want stuff to look much different when flying at high altitude ;)

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The only problem that remains is at low altitude and on the ground. You really need autogen for this and given that this needs to be applied to the actual textures not sure that this is possible with your method. ??

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>>You are right.>>In case Microsoft chooses to include (or stream) the imagery>in Flight Simulator XI or XII, they would probably have to>nogotiate licensing terms with their satellite data provider.>>But I think this is the future. Why try to squeeze the world>on a DVD if you can stream a more complete version from the>Internet ;)>I do not think so, it is a different approach for a different use.A photo is a moment

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>If you log in to flickr, you can set>preferences so the images and slideshow appear larger by>default.Can't really find the place on flickr where you do that. And I did log on.But anyway it is really amazing what you did. I looks so good. Now if only it would cover the whole planet, that would be nice. There are really bad coverage over most of Europe (anything outside the U.S I would guess).Just gotta kick google in the butt ;)

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That looks simply amazing, great work !!Bad for me though, A: Dial Up (Live in the country)B: The google images around my area (CYEG)have been updated (finally) to about 2M resolution, but they took the shots in the winter!! After shovelling the crap for 6 months of the year, I don't want to see it in FSX for the other 6 too.. heheRegardless, the work and results are stunning. I like how there is no blurring at all !RegardsGarett

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What about the different seasons? I understand that Hawaii only has one season, but I don't want to fly in just in Hawaii.

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WOW! I'd love to see that in motion. Is there any way you could shoot a Fraps video of that? -Jon

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Plese guys just humor me for a moment , treat me like im a ten year old and im wanting to know how you did this and what im doing wrong.are you flying just default planes , add-ons , what and how are you you doing that . im just wanting to fly more than tweak more.3800+ 64,7800gsos , 2 gig ram, 74 sata drive 10.000, gigabyte motherboard...........Robert

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Well, I could theorize, and I have, but I won't on here.Not if there is still some question about the legality of it.

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I must be missing something. What is the difference between your effort and this commercial product: http://fsearth.fsutil.com/In other words, why isn't that company as concerned with usage of Google data as you are?I am just curious - like I said maybe I don't understand the differences between your work and theirs.Dave Blevins

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This makes no sense?? Have you looked at the images? When was the last time you looked at anything 40+ miles away and it was clear? Also, there is NO blending at all with the horizon?And you say 1600 x 1200 then say it's being displayed on a dell at 1920 x 1200? Huh?Sorry but these screenshot just are NOT stunning, they're very unrealistic.Rob.

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I, like others I'm sure, eagerly await your version. If you haven't been reading up on the progress of this project, then it's been said over and over that it's a work in progress. This isn't an ad for a commercial product, rather a demonstration on a cool mix of Google Earth imagery and Flight sim. Yeah, it's not perfect, but damned if your post isn't one of the more negative ones I've seen around here.

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Who knows, maybe one day we'll see the same real time terrain as we have weather now... Just imagine a simulator that's right up to date terrain wise.

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The flickr uploader was suggesting a resize to 1600x1200 for uploading. I did that. Too bad that I would need a paid-for flickr account to allow anyone access to the version I uploaded. That is $20 a year.

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