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RandallR

Tampa, FL and Terrascene?

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Hi,As some of you are probably aware, Florida has several "gaps" when it comes to the government data that Terrascene uses to render scenery, one of which is a large area just north of Tampa. As a result, the only thing that renders are roads, coastlines, rivers/streams, and lakes. There is no differentiation with regards to land class types/textures, and the only texture is the background texture I chose in the options menu.Does anyone know of a way to work around this? I know someone once sugested shapefiles, which I know nothing about, although I'd be willing to learn. And if anyone had any other ideas I could try I'd also be very appreciative.Also, does anyone know whatever happened to the Scenery!USA scenery by Peter McLean? I know the website mentioned they were going to be creating scenery for Fly!2, and even had some screenshots of Fly!2 scenery posted, but their website (http://www. flyscenery.com) seems to no longer exist.Thanks,Jeff

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>Does anyone know of a way to work around this? I know >someone once sugested shapefiles, which I know nothing >about, although I'd be willing to learn. And if anyone had >any other ideas I could try I'd also be very appreciative. Jeff,There is another way you can try if you have Photoshop LE or any program that has a similiar editing capability. About 2 years ago I encountered this same problem in the S. Padre Island area and Randall Rocke made a suggestion that worked very well. Render the same daytime area several times and each time use a different texture as the background texture. Render as many as you feel you'll need to build the area. Render one to be a master image. Using Photoshop LE there is an editing function called "magnetic lasso". You drag the lasso around the area you want and then you can copy it to your master. After pasting it, you can zoom in on an area and use the "Grab" function to properly position the pasted image on the master. I usually zoom in on a point where I can match up both a horizontal pixel and a vertical one. You can get the alignment perfect. It's a lot of work but it is not very hard to do.

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Jeff,Outside of the approach Dean just mentioned, I was also the one that recommended shapefiles. The basic steps would be:--Download landuse data from GIS Data Depot ( http://www.gisdatadepot.com/catalog/index.html )or from the DCW Map Interface for Europe ( http://www.maproom.psu.edu/cgi-bin/dcw/dcwarea.cgi?Europe ) in E00 format--Download and install the FME Graphics Suite from Safe software - this is an expensive package if you were to buy it, BUT you can download a trial version and get a free temporary license. The site for this program is listed in the Terrascene tutorial in the instructions for the Canadian scenery.--Use the FME Suite to convert all of the E00 files to standard Shapefiles.--Assign appropriate land-types (check the tutorial to get a feel for this) and import the shapefile data to the Manually loaded folder of Terrascene--Render your scenery - the shapefiles should be rendered first, with all of your USGS portions rendered over the top of it.This is the procedure I used to do the island of Hawaii in Fly!2K, as half of the data for that island is missing from the USGS site. You should get even better results than I did, as you at least have some of the detailed USGS roadways, etc. to give more detail.

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Hi,Thank you both for your suggestions. I think I'll look into both methods, and see if I can get anything to come of it.Again, thanks for your help.Jeff

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Randall,I've decided to try your approach first since, despite being a fair amount of work, still seems fairly automated once you get the needed data, and then convert it. So, here is an update of my progress thus far...- I've downloaded all the "Landuse/Land Cover (SWFWMD)" for Hillsborough, Pinellas and Pasco counties from GIS Data Depot; the files end ".E00," but are classified as Z-files - I'm guessing this is correct- I downloaded the FMS Graphics Suite, and have activiated it for the 14-day free trialAfter opening the "fmegui" application (the "FME 2002 Universal Translator") I go to "File," and then "Translate"It's here that I need some help (assuming I've done everything correctly so far)...What format should I select for both "source" and "destination?" I see there's an "ESRI ArcInfo Export (E00)" option, but would that be correct if my files are saved as Z-files? If not, what format would be appropriate?Also, for destination, what format should I select? "ESRI Shape?" Or something else?I greatly appreciate all your help so far, and would appreciate any suggestions you may have.Thanks,Jeff

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Jeff,I believe you've downloaded the wrong data. I took a quick peek at the info for Florida on the GIS site - I believe the link you want to use is Land Use/Land Cover-250K. When you click this link, you'll be taken to another page for different downloads - scroll down the list to "Land Use & Land Cover" - that should be your stuff - there may be others here that you want - see if they have political boundaries. You might also want to download some of the DCW data from here: http://www.maproom.psu.edu/cgi-bin/dcw/dcw...i?North_America and stick it in a separate directory. They may have data that has better political boundaries for shorelines, etc.After you download and unzip it, you should have files like lcpoly.e00. This you then convert to shapefiles with FME. ESRI Arcinfo Export (E00) is your source - ESRI Shape is your destination.Use the ArcExplorer program (free download listed in the tutorial) to view your new shape files - this is really helpful for seeing what the shapes are. For help with what the codes mean when you go to assign them in Terrascene, here is a data description base for ESRI from GIS: http://www.gisdatadepot.com/readme/dcw/dcw.html . You should get a similar descriptor from the DCW site for their files.Remember, you don't need a lot of this stuff - you already have a lot of the upper detail from USDGS. Use the political boundary shapes to get shorelines, etc. and the basic LULC shapes to "get out of the water".

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When I went to the GIS site, I did look under the Land Use / Land Cover - 250K link. However, for all three counties, the only city I saw was Tarpon Springs (and the different kinds of data available for it (i.e. Census County Subdivision, Composite Theme Grid format, Federal Land, Hydrologic Units, Land Use and Land Cover, Political Units and State Land). Am I correct in assuming that the data I need (at least for everywhere else besides Tarpon Springs) doesn't exist at this site?Once I get some free time later tonight, I'll explore the Maproom site you provided a link for, and see what I can find.Once again, thank you for all your help. I appreciate your time in replying to my questions, and your assistance in walking me through what I need to do.Thanks,Jeff

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Jeff,LULC for the counties should be all you need - there usually isn't a city listed, as some of it (at least its basic shape) should be in the LULC info. Also, isn't the city and its streets already included in the better-detailed USGS data?As far as political boundaries, yes - the other site may give you some more info.

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