Friday, February 15, 2008

Where it all began...

Some of you may know that I've been elected Microsoft MVP by the good folks at ACES, an honor that I take seriously, constantly reminding myself that there's still so much to be done to improve my code base and provide more efficient and thorough work so my team mates can become more productive. I owe a lot to our friends in Redmond who make the best flight simulator there is today - if not for them, our 737 and 747 products wouldn't have been so greatly acknowledged.

Focusing so much on the future, though, sometimes keeps me from remembering the past: Where it all began for me in flight simulation and who was responsible for my involvement in the business. I have a very warm place in my heart for the team which caused me to realize that flight simulation is so much more than just a game. That team was Terminal Reality and the Fly! developers.

The trip down memory lane was caused by an article I happened to read today, written nine years ago (already!). It describes a (real) trip I would have liked to have made myself, to meet at least some of the people I considered very important when I started my humble career in flight simulation development. One of them, in particular, who unfortunately is no longer with us. Fare well, Richard Harvey, I am sure I'll meet you one day in a different cloudless sky...

Monday, February 11, 2008

The PMDG 747-400 and Microsoft ESP

I've been feeling quite under the weather lately - turns out I caught the family flu bug and I've been going through the five stages (denial, etc.)

I can't code like this, so I'm taking a bit of time to say that I've successfully ported our 747-400 code base over to Microsoft ESP. For those of you who don't know what ESP is, it's the commercial simulation platform the good folks at Microsoft created to allow professional enterprises to bring previously games-based technology to training and learning, decision support, and research and development modeling for government and commercial organizations.

This means those entities who were previously running the PMDG 747-400 for training purposes, "bending the rules" a bit and ignoring the EULA which suggested it was "for entertainment purposes only", can now negotiate a specific license agreement which will allow them to run the platform on a different relationship basis.

No - we're not abandoning the entertainment market, so stop worrying! :-)

Saturday, February 09, 2008

Why you NEED to install SP1 if using Vista

Mark Russinovich posted a very enlightening blog entry regarding file copying in Vista and how SP1 affects (actually: improves) this.

Those of you running Media Center and viewing files remotely are particularly interested.

Those of you running Flight Simulator X are also interested, due to a particular bug which calls for re-reading some base BGLs constantly (yes, we've alerted ACES and no- it can't be fixed for FSX).