Been thinking ....... I uninstalled FS2 and reinstalled it to a different drive. 107 gb of data. 10 cities in detail for CA plus NY plus Switzerland and HD mesh. That is a very small part of the world and a huge download. How big would the entire world be then if given the same detail?
More seriously, as a practical matter I have no idea, but don't think anyone really flies the entire earth, though some are comforted by knowing its there. I think people mostly pick regions that interest them, and buy material, planes, airports etc, that complement their experience/enjoyment of those regions.
If that's true, there's no real need to consider downloading the entire earth. Just the parts you like, which is a much more reasonable proposition.
The who world in that detail will not be finished by 2030 As Hiflyer mentions, most people take their home country of a portion of it, and 1 or 2 other regions or larger airport areas. Thats where ORBX comes in.
Also, an FTX global type solution will make other area's believable enough to have fun on occasion.
It would huge, yes ! But there is a much bigger issue : extending AFS world even with only a few sceneries would quickly necessitate the ability to choose choose which scenery to activate or deactivate.
Did you notice for instance that since the NYC DLC load time raised to 18s (on my config, compared to 9s previously). OK, it's very reasonable, but whenever AFS2 rises to a grown-up sim load times will quickly rise to several minutes and the system will collapse due to unnecessary data being loaded.
Unfortunately there is no such feature yet in AFS2 and the architecture doesn't seem thought for it : there's no separation between mesh and photo texture. Worse, the 3D objects seem to be merged and compiled within the mesh, leaving no chance for third party editors to develop compatible add-on sceneries.
Imagine for instance somebody creates a nice, detailed scenery for the JFK airport, with a dedicated mesh and high resolution photo texture. I don't see how to integrate it to the existing NYC DLC, you have to choose : either the NYC DLC, or the local scenery.
I feel somewhat concerned. I'm afraid I don't see where you expect Orbx to come in unless IPACS start listening to editors needs and rethink their architecture for an open platform.
Otherwise I fear it'll remain a nice one shot like AeroflyFS v1...
for the record and before this information is being spread too much:
The assumptions by Antoine on how the scenery of Aerofly is composed are not correct. Newer versions of our SDK might shed some more light into it in the future.
Also, load times will likely not increase that much too even if we add new features like water for example. Please observe that New York just has a tremendous amount of buildings.
[...]whenever AFS2 rises to a grown-up sim load times will quickly rise to several minutes and the system will collapse due to unnecessary data being loaded.[...]
That's exactly not how the Aerofly FS 2 loads content. If you pick a location on the map the Aerofly algorithm will load the surrounding area when you press fly, if its not already been loaded before. When you are flying it will contineously load new chunks and will free the memory that is no longer needed.
As far as I know it finds the scenery needed in a different thread, so the simulator is not slowed down even if one had a thousands of Gigabytes of scenery on one harddrive. The only bottleneck is uploading textures to the graphics card because the graphics card will stop for the loading process of the textures and that can result in a couple of frames dropped, that's an issue with todays hardware.
As far as I remember the total space required for the entire world in the resolution of the South-Western Texture DLC would be about 500 to 1000 terra bytes. The Earth is just way too big, and as mentioned there are regions that you will never need in such detail. Sahara desert, Antarctica and large parts of Russia are regions that are just huge but don't contain that much content-
Thank you both for your answers. My apologies if I sounded negative, it was not my goal. I rather wanted to draw your attention on the community and its needs and concerns.
All the surviving simulators so far live only thanks to their community. Without it, there would be no more FS, P3D, XPlane, etc. They would have vanished just like Fly Unlimited or AeroflyFS v1, although both of them were very promising.
And for each simulator, the community is vast, with a lot of very different use, from the occasional gamer to the hardcore airline simmer with his home cockpit, via the VFR Pilot. Although it's all about flying, their needs and aims in simulation are very different.
Ok, the virtual airline simmer is not the ideal target for AeroflyFS 2, but the VFR pilot could definitely find in AeroflyFS 2 its long wished best simulator, provided that he can develop it in that direction.Quote
Please observe that New York just has a tremendous amount of buildings.
Well I would rather say it has a tremendous density of buildings on a 1-digit percentage of the scenery and the rest is empty, with average sprayed trees no matter where...
It's a beautiful demo of what can be done with the graphical engine, but beyond the initial wow effect it doesn't make a scenery. I enjoy circling around Manhattan in the Corsair, or aboard the C172. But even with the C172 the built zone is crossed within less than minutes.
Everyone is overexcited by JV's announcement to try and make a scenery, fine. But Orbx only makes micro sceneries like airports (great, but very small). The rest of their world is raw landclass, a technology that was fortunately enough discarded from AeroflyFS. They have no experience in photo realistic sceneries. In other words, it's great if Orbx makes one (or even better several) scenery/ies for AeroflyFS, but they will need to be merged in a regional "flyable" scenery, otherwise it will be an island in the middle of nowhere...
Studying the SDK and reading the few posts from IPACS members I'm simply afraid that IPACS vision of the community is Editor A will make Chicago, Editor B will make Hong-Kong, Editor C will make Ouagadougou, and that's it... in between we have low red satellite pictures for the one who will want to fly at FL390 between sceneries.
The reality of the community when AeroflyFS 2 starts growing as an open platform will for instance look like this (US example, but it would be the same in Europe):
Editor A will want to provide a higher res mesh for, say, the US East Coast, while Editor B will propose a slightly coarser mesh, but for the entire US;
Editor C will want to propose photo scenery per US State, but with inconstant quality, while Editor D will propose very high quality HD photo scenery, but only for some zones;
Editor F will maybe compile buildings and vegetation autogen out of databases per US State, but with some holes where data are missing;
Editor G will provide a very generic Air and ground traffic product for the entire USA, while Editor H will compile highly efficient and accurate traffic, but from some region only;
Several Editors will provide bigger and smaller airports, but some will be in competition on the same ones - those that have higher hit rate;
And the simmer will want to pick here and there what he wants and build his own sim world according to his needs and tastes. That's the way it works. But it is only possible with a real SDK like the one from MS for FSX - did you look at it ?
I know AeroflyFS 2 has still way to go, and I really hope the best, potential is very high, but please don't miss the train.
For the rest, I'm very happy if it loads the way Jan says, I'll check again, I really had the feeling the longer NYC load time also occurred when loading the Swiss scenery, which would have meant everything was being loaded.
Keep up the good work !
Wow! All this info from my idle question about how big a whole world instal might be.
Thanks guys for all the input. Fascinating stuff. A few years back now (quite a few really) I remember having the most powerful computer in my work place with the biggest hard drive. The Hard Drive was a whopping 300mb in size and I think the processor was a 286. I guess in another ten years 1000tb drives will be considered small.
13 petabyte data bracelets will be low level junk at Walmart.....
Yes there will hopefully be several companies developing scenery for the Aerofly FS 2. Since there are a lot of locations that can be expanded, I would estimate that it will take at least a year or two until two editors accidentally create the same airport. And by then we will most likely have a solution to deal with overlapping scenery.
Personally I don't like the way you have to manually activate scenery in FSX. There has to be a better, maybe a graphical solution. E.g. have the conflicting area automatically detected and highlighted on the map. Then the user can decide which scenery he/she likes the most and which scenery has priority.