Beatle's Blog

Random Ramblings of a Flight Simulator Developer

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I'm Bbbbaaaaaccccckkkkk

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[ and they gave me a blog - what were they thinking :-> ]

Hey Everyone,  Welcome to my blog. 

 

First things, who the heck is this guy :->

Name: Tim Gregson

Position: Software Developer - Microsoft Flight Simulator

Location: Fredericksburg, VA

History:

  • 1990 - 1995 Worked at Bruce Artwick Organization (BAO) on FS4 SGA addon, Tower (Consumer and Pro versions), ported FS5 and SS1 to run on Japanese hardware/OS
  • 1995 - 1999  Moved to MS when they acquired BAO, worked on FS95, FS98, FS2000 (also created the FRATE, ADVSTART, and ORDISP addons for FS95/FS98 :->)
  • 1999 - 2001  Decided I wanted to do some hardware level work for a while, so I moved to the Windows CE Core OS Drivers team
  • 2001 - 2002  Wanted to move to Virginia to be closer to my kids, moved to the MSTV group because they would let me work from home.
  • 2002 - 2004  Took a couple of years off
  • 2004 - 2005  Rejoined the FS team as a contractor (working from my home)
  • 2005 - ?        Hired back on with the FS team as a full time MS employee again (still working from my home)

 

And now on with the blog

Let me start by saying, things are a lot different at MS these days compared to 10 years ago. 

When MS acquired BAO in '95, I had been hanging around the FSFORUM on Compuserve (you all remember CIS & FSFORUM don't ya :->) for over a year and would get the occasional "worried looks" from management when they found out I had been posting on various on-line sites (CIS, MSN Forum, AVSIM.COM, SIMFLIGHT.COM, etc ) - of course, these worried looks led to some of the management types starting to frequent the same on-line sites (the paranoid in me thinks they were checking up on me, but for whatever reason, at least they showed up :->).

Fast Forward 10 years (man, I'm getting old :->), and now the management types actually send us email encouraging us to visit the various FS-related web sites, start our own Blogs (like this one), go to the trade shows where FS has a booth, etc.

A very nice change in attitude.  Now I see phrases like "How will this effect our customers", "How will the customer expect this to work", etc in emails and "hallway meetings".  Even the template we use for design/change proposals for new versions has a field to list direct customer benefits of this new design/change.  Not that we didn't care about the user 10 years ago, we did :->, it just wasn't as universally applied to the decision making process as it is these days.  This is good for ya'll (the users) and its good for us (the developers/testers/designers/artists/etc).

 

What is this blog going to be about

I honestly don't know :->.  Probably some musings on being a telecommuter (which I love being, by the way, and more groups at MicroSoft need to consider this option :->), the Joys of Long Distance Driving Trips (OK, most folks would probably consider these to be mind numbingly boring - my Mom included - but I enjoy them; I've been averaging between 2 and 3 driving trips a year from Fredericksburg, VA to Redmond, WA since I moved here in '01), maybe some fun things I've found you can do with C#/.Net (if you were wondering, this is what I spent those 2 years I was "semi-retired" (sounds better than unemployed :->) playing with), anything techy/geeky/nerdy is probably fair game at some point :->, oh, and yeah, I might talk about things Flight Sim from time to time :->. 

Eventually I may even figure out how to use the tools available to make this blog page look nicer (a little paint on that wall, some nice curtains, maybe a throw rug :->).

 

Wrap Up

Before I wrap this up for today and get back to writing code :->, just wanted to say a quick Hi to all my old friends in the FS OnLine Community (you know who you are :->) and sorry I sorta dissappeared off the face of the web for 5 years, and also a quick Hello to any new friends out there :->.

 

Tim "Beatle" Gregson

Comments
  • Hi Tim,

    Glad you have joined the FS "blogosphere" that is suddenly booming. :-) And you're telecommuting .... VERY interesting :-)

    Best regards,

    O

  • Allow me to also welcome you to the 21st century... ;)

    Bill Leaming
    Eaglesoft DG

  • I LOVED Tower.. played it for days and days when it came out.  It'd be awesome if someone updated it with shiny new graphics.

  • Great to see your name again.  Your mentioning the old FSFORUM really opened up memories.  I do miss all the old gang...

    Are ya going to be working with the FS10 group?

    Best regards,

    Bill

  • i have the old version of tower from bao , great game, but it doesnt run under my Pentium IV with win XP PRO. hOW I CAN UPGRADE IT... IS THERE A PATCH, A WEBSITE...SOMETHING?

  • Hi Tim,

    I like very much the sim TOWER! I'm playing it now for ages, but i would like to start my own airport now (European airport).

    I have already a panoramic view of that airport(360°) but i can't make it work. i'm a little bit stuck with the HEX part (ref url http://hangar.simradar.com/2970)
    Can you please put me on the correct way, so tht i can continue making this airport work?
    I'm not very familiar with those HEX programs :-|

    Thanks so much and don't hesitate to contact me on my mail.

    Rgds,

    David (Malkovich_45@hotmail.com)

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