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Manny

A message to Paul Lange, et. al.

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Paul,I just noticed your post relative to the RTM of Acceleration. And I apologize for the lateness of this message, as I have been preoccupied with personal matters and travel for my regular job.Nevertheless, I wanted to take a moment and just thank you for the opportunity that you extended to me in joining your team for the Acceleration release. I have no doubt about the stress that accompanies the release of what has become such an important hallmark in the Microsoft Flight Simulator franchise. I could not be prouder to have been a part of the team that you put together, and it is one of my life's greatest rewards.I know that our interactions have been mostly by email, and that you probably deal with quite a few independent contractors, and that I might be just some other guy you sent emails to and collaborated with.But ... having said that:I grew up in a very small town in southern hick South Louisiana (trust me, I'm not exaggerating). When my father died ... he left us nothing but a mother struggling with six children who earned enough to feed herself and little else. But feed us she did. She was an ACE, and served as my first mentor.She's battling cancer now - and facing it in the exact same way that you or I have faced the many battles in our lives. Guns blazing, you know? And she's wondering whether she did the right thing ... she's wondering what her life meant and how good a job she did raising her children. I imagine you are wondering some of the same things yourself as you raise your young children, and so I know that you understand what I'm trying to say.Life is never a game.It probably sounds stupid to you because you work for Microsoft directly ... maybe it's just a job ... but there are some people in the world who think that working for the world's richest man is a challenge worthy of their effort. And I can attest that it is. It has been my deepest pleasure, but not in the way that you think, because my FSX-Acceleration experience with you has not been the first time that I combined my forces with your boss.For the past 9 years, I have been flying Flight Simulator ... and on the other end, spending Mr. Gates' profits in the developing world, working for one of his charitable concerns, ensuring that the world I leave behind is a better one for my child and your child ... and hopefully in the process, making my mother proud ...... that she did the right things, made the right decisions, and instilled in her children the values we all aspire to.Of that, I have no doubt.Sincerely,Kevin D. Greene

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Nice post,I think that, now the NDA has been lifted, and we can freely talk about Acceleration, your post might be a good chance to point out something that might interest people.Does anyone recalls how many times we saw messages on the various communities over the lines of "why Microsoft do not hire this or that 3rd party developer to help with FSx ?".Well, starting with Acceleration, they did the smart thing, and contacted several well known names, to actively take part in the developing process, not only beta testing.Myself, together with other two guys (A. Cucinotta and F.Pacchioni, someone might have heard of us for having done work on sceneries/airplanes during the years with companies like Lago, Cloud9 and Aerosoft ), had the great chance to work together with Aces during the developement of Acceleration, as Kevin and his team did for the missions.Specifically, we did the F/A-18 Virtual Cockpit and Gauges, plus the EH-101 Gauges. The external model has been done by a another very well known name of the FS community, but I don't want to spoil the surprise: one should buy Acceleration and look up the credits himself, to known who did what... :)There's no need to tell how happy we are, now that all the work has been done, and I think we can safely say it's our best so far. Much better than our previous, yet still highly successful, Cloud9's Phantom II.By cooperating with external 3rd parties on some content, ACES was surely relieved and able to fully concentrate on the important parts of the simulation engine, like the new helicopter features, the new races, the carrier ops infrastructure ( that will finally open a market for all kind of 3rd party carrier-based addons ), the DX10 features, the bugfixes, the performance improvements, without having to compromise on the aircraft quality.Since Acceleration IS an Addon, and it's the first one in years done by Microsoft (last one was, if I remember correctly, South Cal. scenery for FS95, more than 10 years ago ), the airplanes included certainly are of "Addon" quality! Just to give an idea: the F/A-18 avionics has most of the MFD pages working, including Radar to track AIs and other players in Multiplayer, HSI with Map, Engine and Fuel pages, everything except weapons, basically. It has a proper F/A-18-A radio and autopilot, it has TACAN channels, and it follows routes done with the FSX Flight Planner without using any kind of external utility and it shows them on the HSI, with repeaters on the fully vector-based, antialiased and very smooth-moving HUD. All analog instruments are in FULL 3D, including a real spherical artificial horizon ball, and individual fuel quantity drum indicators entirely done in 3D ( the F/A-18-A is still a very "analog" airplane ), meaning the VC refresh rate is exactly the same of the screen fps.It's NOT your typical "default airplane", it's something that might have been published separately, and sold for about the same price of the whole Acceleration package.I just wanted to post this, because I keep reading messages, usually coming from people who obviously haven't seen the product, stating the airplanes included would be "certainly" of a low quality and not to be comparable to a payware offer. Or that Acceleration is just a way to make people pay to have bug fixed, improve performances and seeing DX10 in action.I really think these comments do not have any merit: Acceleration is a product that stands on its own, for the airplanes included, and for the new features added.We certainly feel a sense of accomplishment, and I'd like to think that Acceleration is more of a "community" product than one might reasonably expect from such a big company like Microsoft. Other than being a programmer by profession, I'm still a simmer like anyone else, and I still greatly enjoy what I do. Doing the F/A-18 was a great learning experience and lot of fun, I hope some of this will show in the final product...thanks for reading,

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Kevin, I'm replying more in-depth in a private e-mail, but it was a pleasure working with you and it will be fun to do more in the future.

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Umberto, you and your team rock! The F/A-18a is awesome and I couldn't be more proud of the work than I am. This project nearly killed me and I'm sure it took a toll on your team as well.I made a post on my blog about the folks that helped us create Acceleration and you guys are certainly mentioned.Thank you again for all of your effort and pushing through the various issues.

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Thaks Goefa (??)She is pushing full Gs and the bloom is WONDERFUL (like ... no loss of FPS. Of course, she'd never get that, but ....)What an inspration she has been!Kevin

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Paul,Thank you for your kind comments. Please extend my sincere gratitude to Brandon and the rest of your huge team for all the assistance they provided to me in my meager contribution to your development effort.I can say without a doubt, for any who have or had a doubt (and I was among you) that the ACES team is absolutely dedicated to ensuring that Microsoft Flight Simulator is the premier simulation of flight that can be had at any price outside of a military environment.I will continue to pay tribute where deemed, and continue to offer my criticism where deemed (forgive me) ... in the sincere hope that our community, vital in my estimation to the furtherance of safe, enjoyable flight, remains the place to be when it comes to flight simulation.Cheers,Kevin

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the screen shots for acceleration look simply amazingyou all did a great job and deserve a big thank you from me

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>Does anyone recalls how many times we saw messages on the>various communities over the lines of "why Microsoft do not>hire this or that 3rd party developer to help with FSx ?".Umberto, you and the others have done a fantastic job. There were many invited to participate, but unfortunately had to decline this time around because of current project workload.I'm looking forward to see how well Acceleration does! I know I'm having a ball with it! ;)

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Umberto,Thanks for that info. Cool! I was kind of thinking.. I already have an F-18 freeware from FS9 that works pretty good in FSX and what not.. But Its good to know, that this is of a payware quality done by one of the more competent vendors.If this is the trend, I love this idea! I hope this model continues.BTW, do you know who did the Istanbul scenery? Of all the things I am seeing in the snippets thats being shown around, my jaw just dropped at seeing one of the screen shot of Istanbul. By Gawd, its amazing. The location is by the Golden Horn and the Galata Tower. Excepting for the trees, since most of the streets there are cobble stones, there isn't much room for trees. Other than that, Its breath taking.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Golden_HornManny

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<>I'll second that. Much better than I thought it would be and echoing Manny's sentiment above I hope Aces continues to draw from the talented 3rd party pool.

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The Istanbul scenery was done internally at Aces. Same for the Tempelhoff, Longleat and Reno scenery.

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This post has got my thinking. Based on what Umberto posted, having said a new market may be created from the forth coming carrier ops features of Acceleration, with the payware quality of the F/A 18 and it's complete features less the weapons - a whole new sim could exist based on FSX for the combat sim crowd. Take the platform and sprinkle in the weapons and you could possible have something like Falcon with the graphics of FSX. Of course you would have to cut out a lot of FSX to get the overhead for combat, but what a great combat sim it could make. I also wanted to wish Kevin and his family the best, and thanks for sharing. All of you guys did a great job from what I can see thus far.

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maybe you can outsource the gfx engine for fs11 so its nots such a framepit????thanks

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In my opinion you should be banned for that statement considering the context of this thread.

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