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FSX 3rd Party Issues:Early Warning

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>>I dont believe you can fix the issues in Lisbon harbor, the>Thames, the Danube, etc with any cfg fixes - those issues are>in the data files and required a re-export to fix. I'd love to>be proven wrong as it would drop the size of the patch>significantly but I dont believe you can fix those issues with>a cfg change.>That is right, some (but not all) of those scenery issues were not mere cfg tweaks with the slope. Some of them were actual data issues that could only be solved by going in and adjusting the data by hand, essentially.There are literally thousands of spots where data could be...what is the right word..."refined". But then, everyone has to consider that Microsoft had to cover the whole world, and that, by definition involves a lot of automated processing of data. And any time you auto process data, it will not be as accurate as a detailed go-through of an area would produce. (case in pt: the Danube) But the alternative would be for FS development time be doubled or tripled, with all of that time spent tweaking scenery data and nothing else. Not a good use of dev time, in my opinion.I think they are going about SP1 in the right way, in that we will see the most egregious scenery accuracy bugs (Thames, Lisbon, Danube, etc.) fixed. I don't (and we shouldn't) expect every river and shoreline to be re-mapped to real-world accuracy. That would take forever.As far as I'm concerned, the scenery fixes are just a bonus. The REAL meat and potatoes of SP1 are the performance improvements, in my opinion.RhettAMD 3700+ (@2310 mhz), eVGA 7800GT 256 (Guru3D 93.71), ASUS A8N-E, PC Power 510 SLI, 2 GB Corsair XMS 2.5-3-3-8 (1T), WD 250 gig 7200 rpm SATA2, CoolerMaster Praetorian case


Rhett

i7-8700k @ 5.0 ghz, 32 GB G.Skill TridentZ, 1080Ti, 32" BenQ, 4K res

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>There are no screenies in that link anymore, but there were>several bad things at the Thames. The craters on the side, the>polygons in the water, and the accordion effect on the water>surface. Its hard for me to see how the cfg tweak could fix>all of that.>The terrain.cfg tweak only masked those issues. It did not change the underlying data (the pits and bumps). All the cfg tweak did was change what texture was applied to sloping water...in this case, water instead of the rock texture.RhettAMD 3700+ (@2310 mhz), eVGA 7800GT 256 (Guru3D 93.71), ASUS A8N-E, PC Power 510 SLI, 2 GB Corsair XMS 2.5-3-3-8 (1T), WD 250 gig 7200 rpm SATA2, CoolerMaster Praetorian case


Rhett

i7-8700k @ 5.0 ghz, 32 GB G.Skill TridentZ, 1080Ti, 32" BenQ, 4K res

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Thanks, that makes sense.Yup, that tweak would be valuable. But landing one of the float planes on the Thames without SP1 would still be an adventure.Re-exporting is the only way to really fix the issues. Which is what we are doing for a limited set of geo-locations. That set is determined by a mix of the size of the fix + the "value" of the location ( national pride, common tourist area, hot flying area, etc ) plus how bad the RTM bits really are. The 3 river/harbor areas I mentioned are just plain bad. We got a few airports on cliffs too, but even there we couldnt get all of them. For instance, the airport in Norway that looks like its on a volcano or something, we couldnt justify the 90m for that geo-location.


ex-Aces Lead PM, FSX SP1 and SP2
ex-Intel LRB native title enablement, ex Intel Gaming and Graphics Samples PM

now Graphics and Multicore PM in Visual Computing Software Enabling.

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Nice analysis. Pretty much spot on.


ex-Aces Lead PM, FSX SP1 and SP2
ex-Intel LRB native title enablement, ex Intel Gaming and Graphics Samples PM

now Graphics and Multicore PM in Visual Computing Software Enabling.

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>Nice analysis. Pretty much spot on.So maybe with the next FS release there will be some time invested in a simple tool that flatens the mesh when there is river vector data for the same area?You have the data and it is georeferenced so such a program is not rocketscience. Just flaten the mesh when there is a river vector. With rivers you could just eliminate the spikes with the sea you set the hight to 0 and with lakes you get it either from the vector data or average your mesh data.


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Guest wyoming

National Geographic, for example, sell their topo maps (mesh) by State. 80 bucks a pop and no one, including myself, complains.On the wole, all this amounts to squeezing the last few drops of the "reproduction" strategy (i.e. mesh/texture) lemon while the photographic data strategy waits to be exploited.

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I'm unaware of sdk content that permits the decoration of a polygon based, layered, ground surface, that can be installed over photoreal.This discussion seems to have used the concept that 3rd party developers have been wrong to step outside the sdk, but I daresay that the fs9 addons that received critical aclaim were all using techniques that the sdk failed to provide for.I do agree that staying within the bounds of the sdk, 3rd party addons will work, its just pretty hard to convince current users that such addons are "state of the art".

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To follow on the multiple issues with Gary's scenery, the DXT1 black edges of the rectangle issue he mentions should be fixed. As I explained in my blog post the double conflict between the 3rd party polygon and the mesh ( z-fighting and round earth correction ) really need a re-tesselation. And changing that code path means a massive retest. We just arent going to be able to fit that into SP1. We did take a look at these 3rd party blockers and where we could we took fixes.Just to stand up for my dev's for a moment, if it was really a 5-second fix we would. It is just not that simple.


ex-Aces Lead PM, FSX SP1 and SP2
ex-Intel LRB native title enablement, ex Intel Gaming and Graphics Samples PM

now Graphics and Multicore PM in Visual Computing Software Enabling.

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forgive me for sounding dumb, but with this new update, will i be able to lets say use georges grimshaws Boston logan scenery in fsx and have it work correctly? right now all that works on the scenery in fsx is the buildings, no ground textures


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I am aware of nothing that is blocking 3rd parties from re-authoring using the FSX SDK to deliver all forms of content ( vehicles, gauges, models, textures ).While we aimed to have good back-compat, it is true we are not 100%. And it is true that the goal of SP1 is performance and not compat.So I cannot promise any and all legacy content will automagically work with SP1. Some issues will get better, some will persist.I dont know how I can state it any plainer than that.


ex-Aces Lead PM, FSX SP1 and SP2
ex-Intel LRB native title enablement, ex Intel Gaming and Graphics Samples PM

now Graphics and Multicore PM in Visual Computing Software Enabling.

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It's not that simple or easy. I wish it was.In the case of these rivers, first of all they are not vector data. "Streams" in the sim are, but not rivers. But you meant river water polys I know.A person would have to apply the flatten to each segment of the river, manually, or else the elevations would be incorrect and it would look terrible.If you applied a flatten to ALL river polys, which is what you suggest, (which you can do already), what elevation would you flatten it at? The Danube...10 meters? 50 meters? 200 meters? You would have to either manually put in stair-step flattens up the whole length of the river...OR...you could not flatten it, and let it follow the mesh instead.The latter is what they do. Thus they are susceptible to spikes and pits.If you put flattens under the Thames, would you flatten it at 3m, which is about London's river level? Or would you flatten the Thames at Oxfords level, which might be 7m? You'd have to put in multiple segmented flattens to get it close to right. Or you could have the water poly follow the mesh, which appears to be what was done.You see what I'm saying here? It's nothing simple or fast or easy.Thinking about this..maybe in the future it would be nice to have river-type polys have a sort of built-in flatten, much like runways and taxiways presently do, which would TAKE NEARBY ELEVATION DATA and interpolate a flatten elevation from that. And then you could subtract a few meters (possibly set in the terrain.cfg file) to account for a river basin. Random thought...RhettAMD 3700+ (@2310 mhz), eVGA 7800GT 256 (Guru3D 93.71), ASUS A8N-E, PC Power 510 SLI, 2 GB Corsair XMS 2.5-3-3-8 (1T), WD 250 gig 7200 rpm SATA2, CoolerMaster Praetorian case


Rhett

i7-8700k @ 5.0 ghz, 32 GB G.Skill TridentZ, 1080Ti, 32" BenQ, 4K res

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>On the wole, all this amounts to squeezing the last few drops>of the "reproduction" strategy (i.e. mesh/texture) lemon while>the photographic data strategy waits to be exploited.The problem is, even if FS was all photoscenery-based, photographic data will STILL rely on a terrain mesh model for elevations, so it will still be prone to pits and spikes in the data.The only difference will be, that the mesh will have a photograph over it, instead of a synth texture.I don't see any simple fast solution to the problem of mesh data anomalies, except good old fashioned hard work.RhettAMD 3700+ (@2310 mhz), eVGA 7800GT 256 (Guru3D 93.71), ASUS A8N-E, PC Power 510 SLI, 2 GB Corsair XMS 2.5-3-3-8 (1T), WD 250 gig 7200 rpm SATA2, CoolerMaster Praetorian case


Rhett

i7-8700k @ 5.0 ghz, 32 GB G.Skill TridentZ, 1080Ti, 32" BenQ, 4K res

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>I am aware of nothing that is blocking 3rd parties from>re-authoring using the FSX SDK to deliver all forms of content>( vehicles, gauges, models, textures ).>>While we aimed to have good back-compat, it is true we are not>100%. >>And it is true that the goal of SP1 is performance and not>compat.>>So I cannot promise any and all legacy content will>automagically work with SP1. Some issues will get better, some>will persist.>>I dont know how I can state it any plainer than that.You stated it rather clear Phil, it's just many want to hear what they want to hear based on what they want to work in the new sim, in this case "complete" backward compatility for any of the addons they already have, which is understandable.Appreciate the info and the insight. Performance is my main concern and I am looking forward to SP1Regards, MichaelKDFWNot anti FS9, just pro FSX!

Asus A8N32-SLI Deluxe nForce4 SLI-x16 / AMD


Best, Michael

KDFW

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Guest allcott

Why is a 2d polygon even being used to cover a 3d mesh and alter its appearance? Thats not clever design. A river polygon that is mapped to terrain should have a `depth` that would allow for variation in the underlying mesh - in the example above it wouldn't matter if the Oxford mesh were 7m and London were 4m, if the polygon was 3-dimensional with a bottom `depth` of say 9m. Reverse the mesh interpolation so that rivers were always flat on top, but inset to the mesh underneath, and the problem goes away as there's room for manoeuvre and a margin for errors elsewhere.As in previous versions, it seems that MS is deciding what they want to fix, not what we, as customers, require fixing. Sorry, but this isn't FS9, this is FSX and the errors are so severe as to require fixing or else the product is simply not fit for the purpose - I want to land the floatplane on the Thames and I can't, even though the literature makes much of the claim that I can. I also want to use addons for FS9 in the new sim at acceptable fps. It's not for ACES to choose what to fix, when the nutty problem of the law could come into it. I wonder what revised imperatives a class action by simmers might induce? It only takes one ambulance chaser. I don't want to be negative, but this is exactly what I feared would happen. And what does that say about the future DX10 patch. Will that be as half-arsed, just because they can't be bothered?Allcott

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Guest rightnumberone

I've found that some buildings' foundations EXPAND to fill the gap on slopes. The two hospitals, for example, included in the mission SDK do this. And it looks great.Only problem is, now you can't land on the helipad of the hospitals if the helipad is over the slope. The sim *thinks* the building is at one elevation, when parts of it are not.Not a major problem, but I thought this was interesting. And it took me a day or two to work out that if I just made certain that the helipad wasn't oriented on the slope side, but on the flat part of the terrain, I could get it to work properly.

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