[jhb_airlines] Re: FPI Update

  • From: "Bones" <bones@xxxxxxx>
  • To: <jhb_airlines@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Mon, 28 Aug 2006 12:29:58 +0100

I can't answer any questions about FSX but the built in ATC facilities would
certainly need looking at. If this is available then there has to be a
decent form of ATC display, accurate airspace detail and the ability of
several controllers to integrate their actions. It also begs the question
about who regulates the system and has the authority to kick a nuisance
pilot or controller off the system.

A basic ATC system isn't hard to create but there are some essentials.

1. Pilots need to see each other.
2. ATC requires a good radar display with the ability to update airspace
data as this changes.
3. Voice should now be considered mandatory.
4. Current weather should also be considered essential - or a system that
gives everyone on the network identical weather data.
5. Some system of regulation is essential to stop the curious or malicious
from spoiling the system for others.

Apart from voice all the above could be done on the FSD Server. I admit the
weather had to be imported manually but it still worked! I understand that
XSquawkbox still works with FSD (maybe SB3 too) but I cannot see that any
current controller software works with it (I understand ATCInn was dropped
late last year).

The big question is whether we wish to run a private network for our own use
or whether we wish to take over from FPI and launch to the big wide world.
There's a huge difference.

bones

-----Original Message-----
From: jhb_airlines-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
[mailto:jhb_airlines-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of Paul
Sent: 28 August 2006 04:34
To: JHB List
Subject: [jhb_airlines] Re: FPI Update


I think before launching headlong into running FPILite or whatever
ourselves, we should take a collective step back and look at the bigger
picture.

We all know FSX is around the corner and has built-in ATC Online facilities.
How extensive this is or how useful to us it may be we do not yet know. Will
this allow us to use third-party multi-player services such as Rory's
servers to deliver the entertainment we require?

If we take on the FPI software, what are we letting ourselves into?  Web
Site management, financial implications etc.  Alex has already started to
see the need for 100Mb/S dedicated line and that's without server
maintainence and so on.

Then what about user group?  Limited or open?  What about future proofing as
FSX becomes the norm will the software be updated to be compatible? Would we
be expected to update it ourselves? Or, worse still, would we be left with
dating software and deminishing numbers, even assuming it's viable in the
first place?

Are we taking on a something which we can enjoy and mould to meet our needs
or a potential lame duck?

Call me a pessimist.  Go on then... all together now... "Paul, you're a
pessimist" <g> Perhaps I am being overly cautious but I want to be sure any
venture has been thought through rather than coming from a knee jerk
reaction.

I have to admit it would suit us to be able to run the system ourselves but
is the work, cost and effort needed realistic?

We all know how easy it is for such ventures to start out as a collective
only to end up with one or two doing everything while promises or help and
support from others never really materialise and I make no excuses, I've
been guilty of such behaviour myself in the past. All with very good reason
but none-the-less I could not contribute as I had planned and that leaves a
bitter taste not only for me but those I intended to work with.

So, as I started out saying, take a step back and consider things in
context.  Why is Stefan so reluctant for VATSim or IVAO to have the ICP
client?  I'm sure there's a reasonable retail value in it but the longer he
holds out, then the more likely it is that FSX and it's in-built facilities
are going to impact on it's value.  Either way, now M$ have started to look
at human ATC in the multi-player environment the writing is on the wall. If
this goes M$'s usual route they'll set up a bidding war for compatability
and official support with the online communities before tying them to
one-sided co-operative agreements and eventually buying them out or asset
stripping them.

As I said, call me a pessimist.  It's been one of those days.  I bet the
glass will be half full tomorrow.<g>

Paul






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