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Old 06-11-2019, 07:23 PM   #16
dbeachy1
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Quoting from the article that Fabri91 linked (highlight added):

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The result is something that, judging by the trailer, looks impossibly vast and real. Spencer says that 2 petabytes of geographical data is used to seamlessly stitch together Earth. The trailer rushes past cities, swoops down so we can see elephants and giraffes hanging around and then soars the mountains for some truly incredible views.

Spencer warned the team: "You're going to have to put at the bottom that it's in-game, because nobody is going to believe that's in the game."
2 petabytes is 2000 terabytes, which is 2,000,000 gigabytes, which is the equivalent of 500 four-terabyte hard drives.

So it's safe to say the scenery will be streamed down from Microsoft's AI Azure cloud as necessary.
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Old 06-11-2019, 07:53 PM   #17
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Yeah, and I thought I had plenty of space when I bought a 6TB drive in February
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Old 06-11-2019, 10:04 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by fred18 View Post
 Just a sort of OT to tell that when I was working in Oil&Gas I encountered many clients who thought something different. To sum it up: if to build this offshore oil rig it takes 1 million man hours... just put 1 million workers and in 1 hour we'll get it

I know. I have met similar people in the automotive industry.



But I have also heard of the exact opposite once... engineers fighting against parallel processing. They had a very comfortable, stress free workday as long as the software was the bottleneck:


They started 8 post-processing jobs when they started their workday. Those needed about 5-12 hours to finish. In the mean time, they did the paperwork with the post-processing results of the previous day.



And then came some stupid young aerospace software developer. Got badly criticized in a meeting because the alternative post-processor was too slow. At that time it used same mathematic flow as the single-core version and needed about 6 hours for a large job (where the single-core version needed 12).


In the next meeting, the new post-processor needed 1.5 hours with 8 CPUs for the 12 hour job. At this point, the young software developer had to explain why his version of the software differed by 0.02g air/hour from the baseline (About {10}^{-9} of the total flow through that radiator.)
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Old 06-12-2019, 12:25 AM   #19
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Oh joy *looks at rural internet that takes a week to download BFV updates*
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Old 06-12-2019, 03:26 AM   #20
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Well, the streaming model kind of makes sense. How much scenery can you really see from a plane at any given time? I can see some smart algorithms being used to compress the data. You don't need to be able to count the shingles on a house from FL300.
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Old 06-12-2019, 02:25 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by dbeachy1 View Post
 2 petabytes is 2000 terabytes, which is 2,000,000 gigabytes, which is the equivalent of 500,000 four-terabyte hard drives.
It surely is a lot of hard drives, even when taking into account the overenthusiastic application of zeros

Incidently, I did fill a couple of 3TB drives during constructing the Earth, Moon and Mars textures, so I can attest to the fact that data do definitely pile up rather rapidly in those applications.
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Old 06-12-2019, 05:25 PM   #22
Samuel Edwards
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Originally Posted by dbeachy1 View Post
 From reading about it, my impression is that the new Microsoft Flight Simulator will stream the scenery and textures down from their AI-integrated Azure cloud and cache it locally as you need it rather than try to install all the scenery in the world locally, as previous-generation flight simulators do. In any case, however they do it, the results look stunning!
What happens when, in 5 years, they decide not to continue that service and you have a dead product that relied on a streaming service from a server to run?
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Old 06-12-2019, 06:01 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by Samuel Edwards View Post
 What happens when, in 5 years, they decide not to continue that service and you have a dead product that relied on a streaming service from a server to run?
Then the game won't work. It's the same as any other online game being discontinued (like MMOs). It is what it is: it's the price we pay for having access to 2 petabytes of scenery data on our local systems.
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Old 06-12-2019, 06:37 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by martins View Post
 It surely is a lot of hard drives, even when taking into account the overenthusiastic application of zeros

Incidently, I did fill a couple of 3TB drives during constructing the Earth, Moon and Mars textures, so I can attest to the fact that data do definitely pile up rather rapidly in those applications.
There's also Ortho4XP for X-Plane: basically a way to download satellite imagery to use as scenery. It's extremely easy to amass a couple hundred gigs for a relatively small region.
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Old 06-12-2019, 07:21 PM   #25
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Well it's a long way from MS Flight Simulator 4 on my Atari, where I learned simulated IFR flying. Still I remember those night flights from Boston Logan airport to New York La Guardia. Bad weather, using VOR and NDB navigation only, while trying to keep the plane level and on course.

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Old 06-12-2019, 07:55 PM   #26
Samuel Edwards
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Originally Posted by dbeachy1 View Post
 Then the game won't work. It's the same as any other online game being discontinued (like MMOs). It is what it is: it's the price we pay for having access to 2 petabytes of scenery data on our local systems.
While I understand the data limitations, I cannot, as a principle, place money into a game that depends on a central server as it negates the ownership of product unless there is a significantly outlined end-of-life plan. Doing FS 2020 this way is no better than EA creating server-dependent games that they kill off every five years.

If you pay for a product, it should be yours forever. Games as a service kills games, and beautiful scenery data is not worth the money if you will eventually lose the ability to run the game. It is worse when you consider the money lost with the purchase of professional, commercially developed addons that many will buy. Made worse, again, when you factor in the fact these professional, commercially developed addons will be rendered unusable.

Games are like any other product. Once bought, they should be yours forever. Accepting the proliferation of the games as a service model is just consumers being complacent in big companies taking the money and running: because that is what it is. Payment is exchange of money for a good. When the good is taken back, you have been robbed of your money.

It is the price we pay... and we're funding a terrible future and establishing an even deeper precedent for games as a service to screw over, not just gamers, but simmers. This is an issue, not some flukey, cast to the wayside business model we should live with and be fine with. This is actively supporting a vicious business practice, and one of the worst parts of overly-greedy Capitalism.

Last edited by Samuel Edwards; 06-12-2019 at 08:10 PM.
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Old 06-13-2019, 04:43 PM   #27
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Completely agree that the game should work offline and be complete.
They can still charge photoscenery streaming as a DLC for those who want it.

Anyway, they seem to be too focused on photographic scenery and that's not new.
Here's FSX with it:


For a flight simulation other things are more important, like weather, IFR and traffic.
So this seem to be an "arcade" sim much like "Microsoft Flight". I'll pass.
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Old 06-13-2019, 05:06 PM   #28
Samuel Edwards
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IMO, as long as they make it so you can use your own scenery in place of the dedicated server, that would solve the problem entirely -- unless, of course, the weather system, traffic system, and other parts of the simulation similarly require the central server to operate. Hell, if they just offered a basic, low quality global scenery for those who want to play offline, that would be enough. It would just be standard flight simulator with the option of added scenery fidelity. At that point I imagine you could then just buy OrbX scenery if you really want beautiful scenery. Scenery in a flight simulation is nice to have, but it is no way the focus of a simulation. Performance of the aircraft and procedure is.

For the record, I love scenery and it is definitely an attractive part of a simulator: ie choosing Xplane over Flightgear, but that does not negate the point that simulation is part that matters most. The graphics is just superficial, and appreciated where existent.

Keeping the simulator in a state where dependence on a server is not necessary is all I want. This would also be the perfect end-of-life plan too. Server gets killed? Cool, I can still use my state-of-the-art simulation with basic or even third-party created scenery I purchased and is located on my local drive.

---------- Post added at 13:06 ---------- Previous post was at 12:57 ----------

Additionally, and with no real intent to stir the conversation completely off-topic, Ross Scott (the creator of Freeman's Mind) created a video explaining why the games-as-a-service model is ultimately bad for consumers in the long run, and explains bits of the legal landscape for those affected based on nationality.


It is long, but worth the watch to understand why this business model is bad for all of us if not downright predatory. It's too big of an issue not to speak up about.

Last edited by Samuel Edwards; 06-13-2019 at 05:00 PM.
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Old 06-13-2019, 05:13 PM   #29
dbeachy1
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Let's stay on-topic in this thread, please, but feel free to make a new thread in the basement to continue the online-vs-offline games topic there.
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Old 06-14-2019, 06:12 AM   #30
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Holy moly those graphics! I am really curious about how the weather system will look like in the new simulator. I loved FSX and I can't wait for this one.
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