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Swiss001 YouTube video about FlightGear

Postby islandmonkey » Thu Aug 13, 2020 12:53 pm



Nice to see a flight sim YouTuber give a fairly good review of FG. It's a shame that he is using an old version and is also not using ALS (makes the graphics look a little better).

It's the viral marketing we could do with!
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Re: Swiss001 YouTube video about FlightGear

Postby legoboyvdlp » Thu Aug 13, 2020 1:03 pm

That looks like ALS?
At least, this time he didn't explicitly set minimum graphics, and then claim that it looked bad...
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Re: Swiss001 YouTube video about FlightGear

Postby islandmonkey » Thu Aug 13, 2020 3:37 pm

Ah, well, it may be that he might just have the overlay shader off.
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Re: Swiss001 YouTube video about FlightGear

Postby vnts » Sat Aug 15, 2020 3:00 am

legoboyvdlp wrote in Thu Aug 13, 2020 1:03 pm:That looks like ALS?

2:16 Settings page. Just left at "default" renderer (??). Hawaii looks more like this http://wiki.flightgear.org/Category:Scr ... _in_Hawaii with ALS. Even with overlays off ALS generates cm scale detail on surfaces when regional definitions are developed and settings are turned up.

Partly there is a ui/ux issue - one that could probably be improved for the English version of 2020.2.x by changing text as it will be used for a few years. Maybe translations can be added with bugfix releases later.

"Default" renderer implies the renderer that is most accurate for the greatest number of scenarios. The one that people should be using, unless they know of a specific reason why another is better.

I also see ALS wasn't selected, likely as his GPU didn't have a graphics profile. A partial solution to this is possibly using a few conservative "safe" profiles to turn ALS on by default for GPUs faster than a safe minimum using GPU strings from https://opengl.gpuinfo.org/. Additional levels can also max shaders, and to turn up scenery settings near max too - may have to be conservative with trees as they take up a lot of memory.

"Fallback/compatibility (old hardware)", "Compatibility (old hardware)", or even "Legacy (old hardware)" might be more suitable. Not sure about the exact wording.

ALS is more physically and perceptually accurate for more situations than others, as well as being more recent/modern, and should maybe have "default" in brackets - or "standard" if default will lead to confusion with the current default. There should be a mention that ALS can be faster than Fallback/compatibility for certain older hardware provided it supports shaders.

It's probably also better to have a short description of the render's goals and list the pros and cons of renderers in bullet points.

A cue in the launcher UI advising people that there is more settings/detail in the in-sim menus (he seemed surprised by lack of options), and maybe even the property browser for power users, might help.

- 0:19: "I'm genuinely reviewing Flightgear..because Microsoft refused to give me permission to post about Microsoft Flight simulator"

- 0:56: He didn't find the browse button on the launcher. The search bar is located on the top left, and is small. Maybe it should be larger, and located at the center(?) - eventually the metadata search would make searching even more useful. He also didn't use the drop down menu to find variants. Maybe it would help to have a more obvious cue there are variants or start modes, and how many variants there are e.g. Cessna 172p Skyhawk (Variant: 1 of 6) - or something very explicit to that effect.

- 7:30: "This flight simulator, it takes a while to figure out - I've only had about half an hour to prepare" many years and 100s of videos after start of channel to try do a video that is not a practical joke :D :mrgreen: . FG seems to be curiously invisible for those on social media. Glancing at his youtube channel video list [1] by using the infinite scroll to the end and the ctrl+f search - a huge percentage of his videos are casual free/cheap flight simulators (GeoFS, infinite flight) that are overall less featured/quality - and there even flightsims implemented in roblox and other games. This is a lot of time put in. There are plenty of FS-x and x-p videos - implying yet more time. You can't say FG was overlooked because it was free, and you can't say it was overlooked as it was a bigger flightsim and he found it hard to learn those. He even has a video about the X-P Space shuttle (with a /massively/ placeholder version of a space shuttle heh) from a week ago [2]. And another from 3 months ago [3]. He seems to focus on silly/amusing videos, but even then there would have been enough material for videos if he tried the different start up modes and/or amusingly crashed the space shuttle - it seems that FG is curiously invisible again, with no one on social media he interacts seemingly having mentioned that the extremely detailed space shuttle project exists built on a huge amount of available data as it's a NASA craft. Similarly, I see various aircraft-in-space space videos on various sims that look far worse than the FG's Earthview renderer with high res textures. I see some extreme weather videos too - when FG has the most detailed terrain driven weather sim.

The takeaway - silly/amusing videos might not be what FG-ers think of when talking about FG on media, but it's probably symptomatic of a general invisibility that extends to other cases. It can probably can be side-stepped a lot, by updating outdated/obsolete parts of flightgear.org so there's at least an awareness of what FG can do.

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Re: Swiss001 YouTube video about FlightGear

Postby islandmonkey » Sat Aug 15, 2020 5:45 am

Yeah, this guy does not make serious videos.
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Re: Swiss001 YouTube video about FlightGear

Postby Hooray » Tue Aug 25, 2020 3:34 pm

That's actually a pretty decent video review, it would seem like a good idea to reach out to the reviewer and maybe get him to review the next/upcoming release (c172p, fg1000, ALS, AW etc), possibly in conjunction with the changelog/release announcement. That's the kind of thing that the project could use on the official website/forum, newsletter etc - and he'd get a ton of free traffic (=potential subscribers too).


@vnts: with that sort of thorough feedback, you should definitely consider participating in the community survey currently conducted by merspieler: viewtopic.php?f=42&t=37773
And some of your ideas would seem to deserve their own ticket, too: https://sourceforge.net/p/flightgear/codetickets/

Furthermore, given that you also seem to have put quite some time into your analysis, you might even want to reach out to merspieler to hopefully help with improving the survey even more, so that the next survey becomes even more comprehensive :wink:
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Re: Swiss001 YouTube video about FlightGear

Postby legoboyvdlp » Wed Aug 26, 2020 12:17 am

islandmonkey wrote in Sat Aug 15, 2020 5:45 am:Yeah, this guy does not make serious videos.


Given that, this is entirely the opposite of someone that I would like to see make "official" review videos.
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Re: Swiss001 YouTube video about FlightGear

Postby Hooray » Wed Aug 26, 2020 4:44 pm

please make up your own mind, it's not all that bad - and certainly not worse than most FlightGear reviews we have seen over the years.
Also, a review is obviously a subjective thing anyway - that also applies to "reviewing the review" - especially given that contributors are likely to already have their own opinions anyway :lol:

That being said, encouraging people to do a review (written or video) based on a changelog/release announcement is definitely a good idea as it provides a rough structure for the reviewer - no matter how "serious" you consider the reviewer
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Re: Swiss001 YouTube video about FlightGear

Postby wlbragg » Wed Aug 26, 2020 4:58 pm

I think I replied to the review your discussing and what bothers me the most is the people reviewing don't have so much as a clue as to what FG is all about. You can't review anything if you don't know what it is and what it is capable of. They can only compare the elements they see in a 5 minute session. That is a very small fraction of the over all analysis. Worse it's without any detailed setup. How can you possibly get it correct, it's impossible. This person had no clue as to the capability of the sim. FG would blow away MS2020, over all, in a real comparison of capability and features. That is just a fact. We're mostly talking about "polish" of a couple areas or items, at best, in these comparisons/reviews.
Make a chart of available features of all the sims and see which one has the most line items checked.
Make a list of features they all share and which does it best.
You might start getting a picture at that point.
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Re: Swiss001 YouTube video about FlightGear

Postby Hooray » Wed Aug 26, 2020 5:34 pm

well, that's the typical knee-jerk reaction whenever a contributor sees a review and feels that it's not doing justice to FlightGear as a whole.
Personally, I don't think we're doing ourselves a favor here, it's a bit short-sighted to expect newcomers/reviewers to look at FlightGear the way a long-term contributor is looking at it.

Anyway, if that's such a huge thing, I am surprised not seeing more contributors roll up their sleeves to review FlightGear "properly".

Regardless of the background of the reviewer, focusing on the changelog/release announcement would make sense.

Even though I do have to agree that highlighting the strengths of FlightGear compared to say FSX/XP would also seem to make sense.

Otherwise, I am not sure we're doing FG a service here, because a commercial/proprietary product will inevitably have a sizable number of features that end-users care about, features that FlightGear may never have ...

Ideally, a FlightGear specific review would focus on people with a tinkerer mindset, i.e. potential contributors, like RC/UAV folks, embedded hardware people, and the kind of folks interested in looking behind the scenes, i.e. inspecting internal state, extending the sim and using it for completely novel purposes.
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Re: Swiss001 YouTube video about FlightGear

Postby wlbragg » Wed Aug 26, 2020 7:00 pm

Otherwise, I am not sure we're doing FG a service here, because a commercial/proprietary product will inevitably have a sizable number of features that end-users care about, features that FlightGear may never have ...

I'm not sure you read my post correctly? Just the opposite. FG will inevitably have a sizable number of features that end-users care about that a commercial product will never create! After using FG and knowing the features that are out there and available for it, all other sims come up short. Only their little pieces of polish shine.
My reply to the review stated just that. My comments were to the effect of, where do you mention in your review...
Gliders, parachutists, dragons, shuttles and rocketry, hpv's, aircraft carriers, land vehicles, lighter than air vehicles, water craft, water landings, etc., etc., etc.,
And what about...
Networking, home built cockpits, weather, thermals, cargo towing, military applications, scientific theory, rotor wash, wind driven vegetation animation. I could go on and on but don't want to right a review right now.
Not a knee jerk reaction by any means, it's just knowing about the capabilities and known applications out there. All I said is, you can't do an accurate review worth any merit on anything if your not aware of the subject, and this person isn't aware, fact! It was an opinion by comparison of a product by a person with a very shallow knowledge base.
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Re: Swiss001 YouTube video about FlightGear

Postby www2 » Wed Aug 26, 2020 9:09 pm

@wlbragg the only problems that i see with flight gear is advance and easy to install navigation database and graphic eye candy (this is not a big problem)
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Re: Swiss001 YouTube video about FlightGear

Postby Thorsten » Thu Aug 27, 2020 5:03 am

FG will inevitably have a sizable number of features that end-users care about that a commercial product will never create!


I'm unsure about that one. Commercial product means market, which means if the majority of users wants it, that's enough reason to create it, because there's a demand.

FG goes about this in a different way - it happens to often create things very few users will ever care about, but those deeply. Like creating a craft that will take a month of practice to even operate halfway correctly - such things will frustrate the vast majority of users (which makes it commercially non-viable) - but FG can do it anyway because it doesn't have to sell.

So as far as the average end user is concerned, I think he really is generally better served with the commercial product almost by definition. Now, the user looking for a very special application... that's a very different story.
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Re: Swiss001 YouTube video about FlightGear

Postby wlbragg » Thu Aug 27, 2020 6:23 am

FG will inevitably have a sizable number of features that end-users care about that a commercial product will never create!
I'm unsure about that one.

I wasn't referring to market share or who's going to carry the bigger user base or most end-users. For one, marketing and name recognition has a huge impact on that. I was pointing out that a user that wants any one of those features I mentioned, and any of the 100's of other features I didn't mention, will never get them in a commercial product, definitely not all of them in the same product. MS2020 does a very small percentage of these features really well, another small percentage just OK, and another small percentage not well at all. The rest of the features FG is capable of, MS2020 does not have at all.
How many of the FG user base decided to purchase MS2020? I would guess a very small percentage. You simply can't do with that product what you can do with FG. That is really all I am saying. So any review of FG should stress that fact. That is where the strength of our product is. A review that only compares scenery, isn't much of a review. And a review by someone that doesn't know what a good FDM should feel like has no business even trying to review FG in the first place because that is one of its strengths.
Not mentioning or maybe not knowing that we have space craft and aircraft that can land on carriers and aircraft that can land on water or in the bush, that sink in the snow and wont roll in deep snow without skis or large bush tires, or that we have a fire breathing dragon or all our helicopters can tow cargo and stack towers, etc., etc. Well that's the correct review in my opinion. How many MS2020 new users would want to try these things if they know they were available? What if we had just the scenery polished to go along with all these features?
I read the review and in my opinion it totally missed the mark and didn't point out any of the strengths of FG. In my opinion it revealed that the reviewer didn't know much about flight sims in general and even less about FG and its capabilities and strengths. That is really my whole point.
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Re: Swiss001 YouTube video about FlightGear

Postby islandmonkey » Thu Aug 27, 2020 6:47 am

The guy makes joke videos on YouTube with flight sims. I don't expect a comprehensive review or some explanation of the magic you can do behind the scenes that I don't think I'll ever use. It's just nice to see FG get some positive exposure.
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