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Guest Chris Wallace

TRI, for RH sake, let FLY free

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Let's get a petition going so that we may persuade TRI( just a few nice people--not a big corporation--to help fullfill Richards dream: to let FLY live as an open source Flight sim. FLY is no longer a program. It's Richard and his wish to let FLY live among all of us simmers. There's an irony in here, but, damn it, I am angry as hell that such a great guy as Richard cannot receive his life long wish. Please forgive for my strong tone, but I hope you understand and get a petition, organized by Tom Allensworth, going as soon as possible. Let the dream go on. Let TRI say thanks to Richard. tony

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I understand your motivation, Tony, but people have already explored this idea, and it simply isn't going to happen.Anyway, I don't profess to know what Richard's "life long wish" might be ... but if it is to make a huge impact on the future of flight simulation, I dare say his dream is already fulfilled. And Fly! isn't going away anytime soon, no matter what happens ... all you have to do to know that is read the last few days of postings in this forum.- David Sandberg

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It remains an intelectual property of TRI, including its proprietary graphics engine (which apparently is used in other titles as well) so no wonder it just won't happen no matter how many petitions. Michael J.

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Michael-I wonder if TRI cannot strip the graphics engine free of Fly! source code, so we can be allowed to develop our own.As a matter of fact, I am not sure that this graphics engine fits the flight sim model anyway... as far as I am concerned, I'd rather take Fly!'s other code and fit, let's say, Flight Gear code into it...

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Unfortunately I have to agreee that a petition would not really do any good at this point. It's unfortunate that the powers that be at TRI do not see the value of even trying to negotiate some sort of access to the simulation code of Fly!2, but that's the decision that has been made. There is just no business case for them to put any further effort or investment into the Fly! franchise, they are out of the flight sim business and are not looking back. I fully believe that solutions could have been be found around the issues regarding proprietary portions of code, as LK mentions there are LGPL'd libraries like plib and SimGear which might be able to be adapted for use with the Fly! simulation engine. But we'll never know since TRI refuses to discuss it.As David says, I am sure that Rich knows that huge contribution he's made to the flight sim community goes far beyond just this product, and will always be fondly remembered regardless of what happens in the future.Who knows, maybe the execs will have a change of heart and start talking to the beta team...and in the meantime I'm trying to clean up bits of documentation that I've gathered over the years, it'll come in handy someday in some other sim project perhaps...otherwise we just have to enjoy what we have and make the most of it.Chris WallaceOttawa, Canada

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Two problems with that:1) TRI would still have to have someone on their staff spend the time to strip out the graphics engine. I'm sure they've already too little staff to go around for whatever projects they have underway ... they aren't going to be willing to make that situation worse by pulling someone off a project to do this.2) Even the code that isn't shared between multiple apps is an intellectual property of the company, and hence a significant part of its potential market value if the company ever goes up for sale. Also, they never know when in the future they might want to reuse some small part of it in another product. Or perhaps some other company will eventually seek to purchase the Fly! source code for commercial purposes. In light of all of these possibilities, it should be understandable why they would not just give away any part of it. Certainly no software company I've ever worked for would do such a thing with any source code they owned, even in those cases when they had never used the code in any published product, nor expected to do so in the future.- David Sandberginfomsig.jpg

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This is an interesting thread.Has no one considered buying it? Game companies typically welcome licensing of game engines. Look at Quake III. How many clones are out there that use its engine? Red Faction is just one of many.Of course, there are pros and cons of this idea, if Tri would even be willing to proceed with selling the license. The benefit of buying the license is that at the end of the project you will have (hopefully) produced a triple A title, but from a technology stand point you will have nothing. The engine belongs to its original creators. Of course, I suppose this would depend on the agreement you make with the owner. Many engines are substantially altered. This may ultimately sway the balance of ownership.An obvious negative aspect of licensing is the cost issue. The cost of licensing is generally in the region of $100,000 to $250,000. Some engines cost a lot more, like Quake III. Many licensors want the money up front.The feasibility of this is 1) What Tri would be willing to negotiate, and 2) who would front the cash.Food for thought....Vin

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TRI has licensed their Nocturne engine in the past. But this is a bit of a different case, since it's the application, not the underlying graphics engine, that is really of interest. And as you say, the goal would be to fundamentally advance the application to the point that a lot of the added value and intellectual property would be owned by the licensee. An interesting idea, but I don't see how this would be workable at all, even if TRI were open to the idea (which they aren't, as far as I know)There has never been any implication by TRI to turn this into a "money thing"...my understanding is that they've just simply closed the book on the project, moved on to other things and have no desire to revisit it.Chris WallaceOttawa, Canada

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