Coincidental Meditation

Mental irritants from behind the walls of the Flight Sim factory.

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  • Blog Post: Tell FS . . . Why I shouldn't Blog on a Sunday Morning

    Every day, we get a number of suggestions sent to our tell_fs@microsoft.com email address. And, when I say “suggestions”, I mean letters from the widows of Nigerian finance ministers, offers for discounted Viagra, complaints about our copy protection, and . . . suggestions. Contrary to popular mythology...
  • Blog Post: Not Such a Hard Day's Night . . .

    It occurred to me that I don’t spend a lot of time here talking about what I actually do for Microsoft on the Flight Simulator team. It has occurred to a number of people, especially my unbelievably dedicated and vaguely effluvial next door neighbor, self-appointed Blogstleutnant Jason , not to mention...
  • Blog Post: Are you a Mod or a Rocker?

    No, I'm a Mocker . . . First of all, for the record, I don't consider Flight Simulator to be a game. I do believe that it can be used as such, but, like so many other aspects of the product, that is up to the customer - you get out of it what you put into it. If I were to design the box, it would...
  • Blog Post: Lucy in the Sky Without a Man

    There was another interesting post at AVSIM the other day, that the author also emailed to us at tell_fs@microsoft.com , in which he offered suggestions for a "Wife Edition" of Flight Sim. It was full of jokes about shopping, shoes, housework, hair and make-up, etc. The full thread may be found here...
  • Blog Post: How many D's?

    An interesting new debate on AVSIM today - or, at least, a new debate on an old topic: Will 3D virtual cockpits replace 2D instrument panels? Read the thread here . In my opinion, our vision, our design for each release of Flight Simulator could be distilled to a pretty simple equation: Take Reality...
  • Blog Post: Comparing Apples to Really Expensive Apples

    Gone Tropos? There was an interesting post in the new FSX forum on AVSIM the other day expressing hope that the airport environments in FSX will look as good as those seen in a promotional video for commercial flight simulator builder CAE’s Tropos visualization system. A link to the promo video...
  • Blog Post: Well, yeah it was a little, but I don't think it actually did that . . .

    What's that smell? Oh, I know . . . it's "old blog". Sorry about that. The last post seemed to be pretty well received, and a number of you have asked if we get other email messages like that. Unfortunately, almost all of our customers are sane, rational people with good ideas, and better grammar...
  • Blog Post: Weather or Not

    A lot of people have posted wish list threads and sent in suggestions for things they'd like to see in the next version of Flight Sim. Most of us that work on it do the same thing. Our internal wish lists usually, but not always, start with bugs that were postponed from last time. One of the individual...
  • Blog Post: Full Circle

    As of next month, I will have been working on the Flight Simulator franchise for 7 years. As of next year, I will have been a customer of said franchise (the longest continuously published piece of software I know of) for 25 years. One of the very few tangible, material things that has been a constant...
  • Blog Post: Grand Theft Flight Simulator

    Take a Little Trip, Take a Little Trip With Me To the cool, cool water of the semi-pirateless Caribbean . . . In reality, my only excursion to the region was a week on St. Martin / Sint Maarten for my honeymoon, most of which was spent lounging at the Sunset Beach Bar on the beach, the one with some...
  • Blog Post: Is Something Always Better Than Nothing?

    A good pal of mine, when I was floundering around with muttered apologies for not having written in so long, offered to loan me an excuse, which I'll reuse here: "I'm just a man whose circumstances went beyond his control." Normally, I wouldn't quote Styx , and neither would she, but, as another friend...
  • Blog Post: Blink, or don't, and you'll miss me . . .

    I am an attention miser (perhaps a distant cousin of Heat and Snow ) . . . . I tend to pay it out in very small doses (as my friend Knat said in her brilliant article, How to be Distracted , "Hey look, a squirrel"), measure the value of things in my life by how much attention I'm willing to spend...
  • Blog Post: On the Other Hand

    If you really want to see what the life of a software tester isn't like, you could dive into the nearest cultural dumpster and flush 87 minutes of your life down this cinematic low-flow toilet . . . No, I haven't seen it, but in the tradition of self-styled experts everywhere, I refuse to let that stand...