John Wojnaroski wrote:

ATM VATSIM is running an event in SoCal with 24 controllers and 88 flights as of 08:15Z

to be honest: I would have expected more people :-)

I'm all for trying it.

not yet so sure about that ...

And it will take some time to build up a following.

agreed ...

At a minimum we will need a handful of dedicated volunteers who have experience as professional pilots and controllers or a working knowledge of ATC rules and procedures to act as experts and mentors for the rest of us.

I would say, more people would be necessary in order to make it start:

- AT LEAST the "handful" of people who know ATC stuff
- AT LEAST a "handful" developers who have networking experience
- ABOUT half a "handful" ;-) of people who know network security  stuff
- Minimally a handful of people who come up with an interface for MSFS

Think about it: this is not an easy task, this would finally
mean to COMPETE with the major networks - if you want an
NEW (opensource'd) network to be(come) popular, you need to
offer it for OTHER PLATFORMS, too - you must not restrict it
to ANY particular platform or GAME (flight simulator).

This would be about providing a viable alternative to the closed
source networks.

So, after all - if the ultimate GOAL is still to provide virtual
ATC support for FlightGear, one has to take either the full step
or simply drop the whole idea, simply because of the lack of a
really significant user base for FlightGear, so it's unlikely
that such a specific "ATC for FlightGear-only"-network would appeal
to anybody at all.

And then, the whole things gets pointless, because you could simply
stop wasting your time and continue to think about AI ATC, which
would ultimately be a better option, instead of having a
FlightGear-only network, which may be used by 3 dozens clients ...

And possibly 2-3 controllers.

I'll be at the exit; so as you leave, if you would like to leave your name and telephone number we'll be in touch ;-)

regarding the experts that would be required: this shouldn't be SUCH a problem, as they can probably be easily found in various aviation newsgroups/forums, also IVAO/VATSIM themselves provide forums, where you can often times find real controllers.

And then there's a lot of freely available documentation

I don't even think that developing a draft for a  *protocol*
would require much support by professionals, simply because
it would be mainly technical - network related, not so much
really specific to ATC and aviation.

The data that needs to be provided for a protocol can be
determined by looking at the mentioned networks, the user
interface could probably also be resembled - so to some extent,
their 'closed source' software might even help an opensource

It's more about common-sense, to really determine what needs
to be done - and then also about implementing an efficient
protocol :-/

I think, mainly developers, testers, and security people would
need to be available, as well as developers that can do cross-platform
development using low-level networking libraries.

Of course, one might indeed look for an opensource library that serves
as an abstraction layer for the whole OS specific part.

-------- Boris

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