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FGPanel: standalone panel rendering

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FGPanel: standalone panel rendering

Postby BigMick » Mon Nov 01, 2010 10:33 pm

Torsten,

Torsten wrote:I added them to the FSWeekend wiki page:
http://wiki.flightgear.org/index.php/FSweekend_2010#Configuration_files


After reading your wiki page about the upcoming FSweekend, I was wondering about the program fgpanel you're using to display the instrument panel. Unfortunately, I was not able to find any information about this program. Could you give me a hint about this?

Thank you and best wishes for FSweekend!
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Re: FSWeekend 2010

Postby Torsten » Tue Nov 02, 2010 1:30 pm

For all, who still don't have an idea what FSWeekend is all about - watch this:


BigMick wrote:Could you give me a hint about this?

fgpanel is the 2d-panel code from flightgear wrapped into a simple standalone application being able to display 2d instruments on very simple hardware with basic OpenGL support. Find my sources dropped here:
http://www.gitorious.org/flightgear-pmpt/panel
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Re: FSWeekend 2010

Postby zakalawe » Tue Nov 02, 2010 2:32 pm

Torsten wrote:fgpanel is the 2d-panel code from flightgear wrapped into a simple standalone application being able to display 2d instruments on very simple hardware with basic OpenGL support. Find my sources dropped here:
http://www.gitorious.org/flightgear-pmpt/panel

Off-topic, but I am going to be overhauls the 2D panels / displays code in the near future, and was planning to create exactly the same idea - a standalone app that can run a single panel - good to know the idea works! (I'm also planning to internally port the 2D panel code to the new system, but that should be invisible to most people)
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Re: FSWeekend 2010

Postby Hooray » Tue Nov 02, 2010 2:50 pm

zakalawe wrote:
Torsten wrote:fgpanel is the 2d-panel code from flightgear wrapped into a simple standalone application being able to display 2d instruments on very simple hardware with basic OpenGL support. Find my sources dropped here:
http://www.gitorious.org/flightgear-pmpt/panel

Off-topic, but I am going to be overhauls the 2D panels / displays code in the near future, and was planning to create exactly the same idea - a standalone app that can run a single panel - good to know the idea works! (I'm also planning to internally port the 2D panel code to the new system, but that should be invisible to most people)


the standalone 2D panel is actually a great idea, and if this could be improved on, this could make other solutions (like openGC) obsolete.
I think that's important because there are so many similar projects.

maybe there is a way to use FG itself in a special "mode" for just rendering 2D instruments, getting the properties for each instrument from a master fgfs instance.
Such a new "instrument only"-mode could then run with most subsystems disabled (like i.e. sound, fdm, weather, scenery, terrain etc) and only render FG XML instruments.

The corresponding properties could then be retrieved from the fgfs main instance, probably using a custom protocol.

So I really like the idea of having a standalone mode, but I am not sure if it should be a completely separate code base (sounds like maintenance hell to me actually).

Instead, it would probably make sense to make some more subsystems optional so that they can be disabled on demand, then the same fgfs binary could be used for starting up in an "instrument only" mode that only renders 2D instruments with properties being read from a master instance.
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Re: FSWeekend 2010

Postby zakalawe » Tue Nov 02, 2010 6:04 pm

Hooray wrote:Instead, it would probably make sense to make some more subsystems optional so that they can be disabled on demand, then the same fgfs binary could be used for starting up in an "instrument only" mode that only renders 2D instruments with properties being read from a master instance.

That's more or less exactly what it will be - and yes, it will be part of the main FG codebase, not a fork. As you say, the hope is to make fggc and some related things obsolete, since the same XML+Nasal can be used in the main sim or stand-alone. Anyway, all off-topic!
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Re: FSWeekend 2010

Postby BigMick » Tue Nov 02, 2010 9:56 pm

Torsten wrote:fgpanel is the 2d-panel code from flightgear wrapped into a simple standalone application being able to display 2d instruments on very simple hardware with basic OpenGL support. Find my sources dropped here:
http://www.gitorious.org/flightgear-pmpt/panel


Wow, that's a cool little tool, good work! I've always thought about a tool like this, and now I see that it already exists :-)

Thank you for the quick response!
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Re: FGPanel: standalone panel rendering

Postby BigMick » Sat Jan 01, 2011 7:21 pm

Happy new year alltogether!

Torsten, unfortunately I did not manage to use fgpanel correctly. The whole screen remains black. Could you post the xml configuration you used for Lelystadt with your Seneca II? I mean the file Aircraft/SenecaII/Panels/Panel1.xml as described in http://wiki.flightgear.org/index.php/FSweekend_2010#Configuration_files. Or is there another hint you could provide?

Thank you!
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Re: FSWeekend 2010

Postby Hooray » Wed Aug 31, 2011 8:43 pm

zakalawe wrote in Tue Nov 02, 2010 6:04 pm:
Hooray wrote:Instead, it would probably make sense to make some more subsystems optional so that they can be disabled on demand, then the same fgfs binary could be used for starting up in an "instrument only" mode that only renders 2D instruments with properties being read from a master instance.

That's more or less exactly what it will be - and yes, it will be part of the main FG codebase, not a fork. As you say, the hope is to make fggc and some related things obsolete, since the same XML+Nasal can be used in the main sim or stand-alone. Anyway, all off-topic!


At some point looking again into cigi might actually be interesting to handle fgfs<->fgpanel communications, as you may remember, cigi was first brought up some time ago in the DIS/HLA thread and would seem like a perfect match in this context, it's all open source (GPL in fact) and an established standard used by many major players in the aviation industry:

The Common Image Generator Interface (CIGI) is an interface designed to promote a standard way for a host device to communicate with an image generator (IG) in the simulation industry.
Image
Why use CIGI?
  • CIGI is designed to assist suppliers and integrators of IG systems with ease of integration, code reuse, and overall cost reduction.
  • IGs share common controlling attributes, and can capitalize on previous investments through the use of a common interface.
  • CIGI and the tools suite are released open-source, non-proprietary under GNU and GNU Lesser General Public Licenses (GPL).
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Re: FGPanel: standalone panel rendering

Postby clrCoda » Fri Sep 02, 2011 2:56 am

I really like this idea, and had another one, really no kidding, I had a thought of my own. :)

As time goes on, and more modern computers with blazing fast features and unimaginable memory sizes are created, good modelers of flightgear get to use/exploit these new computer features to create ever more complete realism for planes and scenery.

Unfortunately, for people such as myself, I may never afford to be able to upgrade my equipment for personal reasons I will not go into detail here...

But the panel idea is something I personally would like to see exploited and in a way that might help people like myself.

If the panel could be used on highly detailed memory intensive planes, then people like myself would not have to hack a plane model to completely comment out the model in order to get memory enough to fly. What I mean is, say adding an option to wizards that would run the FDM of the model, not show the model, but render the panel alone.

Also, in this vain, it would be nice to use the wizard to set up so that heavily modeled scenery could be selected OFF/ON so that memory demands are lower.
I think it a mistake to allow scenery developers to add scenery to the scene's database. The entire world should be downloadable with just runways, taxiways and airport tarmacs -- this would allow for a minimal memory system to run -- and then any airport or city scenes could be added to the system by a completely different and adjacent, more complete scenery system. Terrasync shoudl be re-created for this idea, so that someone can choose whether or not they want complete scenes, condidered more memory intensive, or just a basic scene package reflecting just runways, taxiways and airport tarmacs.

Otherwise, developers can continue to outclass many potential users of the software.


Just a thought
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