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ABL Message window


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Hi Pete,

We look forward to the release of the FS2004 version of FSUIPC, your terms are more than fair to those who go to the trouble of actually reading them carefully.

Will the FS2004 version of FSUIPC by any chance have an offset for the ABL 'White on Green' message window? I find the 'Red on Green' message window in FS accessed via offset 3380 a little hard to read at the best of times.

Cheerio,

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Will the FS2004 version of FSUIPC by any chance have an offset for the ABL 'White on Green' message window? I find the 'Red on Green' message window in FS accessed via offset 3380 a little hard to read at the best of times.

Well, you could always use AdvDisplay and have it any way and shape you like, of course, and even ShowText to do even more. That package is free and available on the Schiratti site, and, I think, allows far more realistic use of the text data.

As for "ABL" displays, I must admit to never seeing any. If they use the same facilities in FS as those I am already tapping, then it should be easy to provide such an option. Do you have a test which provides an ABL display, or tell me how to make one appear? I'm afraid ABL is not something I've ever had time to look into.

Regards,

Pete

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Thanks Pete, yes I have often recommended AdvDisplay as an elegant solution to the legibility problem of the default adventure text window.

If they use the same facilities in FS as those I am already tapping, then it should be easy to provide such an option. Do you have a test which provides an ABL display, or tell me how to make one appear? I'm afraid ABL is not something I've ever had time to look into.

If you want to see an example of the ABL text window, which is very easy to read due to the colour combination, choose the Student Pilot - Straight & Level flight from the Lessons menu. You will notice the first message that appears suggests setting the throttle to 3/4, this message is being produced via the ablscpt.dll and the text itself is actually stored in a WAV file. We have also recently released a couple of approaches that utilise ABL.

Thanks for taking a look at it, no rush, even if it's a future point release that'd be great.

Hooroo,

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If you want to see an example of the ABL text window, which is very easy to read due to the colour combination, choose the Student Pilot - Straight & Level flight from the Lessons menu. You will notice the first message that appears suggests setting the throttle to 3/4, this message is being produced via the ablscpt.dll and the text itself is actually stored in a WAV file. We have also recently released a couple of approaches that utilise ABL.

Okay. I'll take a look. But if it is using a different mechanism in FS it may not be something I can do quickly.

Thanks for taking a look at it, no rush, even if it's a future point release that'd be great.

Yes, it probably will be a version 3 update, as I effectively froze version 3 yesterday to give me time to do the docs, which I'll start tomorrow. However, if it is dead easy, which I may find out later today, I may just slip it in anyway .

Regards,

Pete

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However, if it is dead easy, which I may find out later today, I may just slip it in anyway

Well, I had a look, as promised. Unfortunately that display isn't using the same routines, which means in order to use it I would have to disassemble and trace further into the DLLs involved. So, whilst I'll leave it on my list to look at for a later version, I cannot actually promise to be able to do it.

Regards,

Pete

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I had a gut feeling about that, I found the way it retrieves the text from a WAV file to be quite novel and feared that it would be little different. I appreciate you having taken the time to have a crack at it in any case. I'm sure you noted how much more legible it is compared to the red-on-green. Interestingly, the Lago F-16 appears to use a white-lettering-on-green message window too (in the mid-air re-fueling scenario).

Best regards,

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Interestingly, the Lago F-16 appears to use a white-lettering-on-green message window too (in the mid-air re-fueling scenario).

Maurizio, Lago's expert on FS innards, is actually much more of an expert than me on many aspects of FS -- remember FSAssist? FSTraffic? Stuff I can only guess at. He would probably know how to do all this display stuff, but I fear it is Lago proprietary information, and he wouldn't be allowed to share it.

I just had a quick look at ABLSCPT.DLL and it looks like all the display stuff it uses is wrapped up in C++ classes and Heirarchies and Virtual Functions and all that sort of dreadful stuff which confuses me greatly (I'm an out-and-out procedural, bottom-up, programmer, ingrained on me for 40 years! ). So it could be a big job. I did solve a few of these sorts of indirect methods in order to get aircraft data in and out of SIM1, and weather in and out of WEATHER.DLL, but it was that which really cost me the last 5 months of 100 hour weeks!

BTW in FS2004 those lessons come out white on grey, not on green. I didn't try FS2002 (no use looking backwards if I can't solve it for new versions).

Regards,

Pete

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Yes they have some clever chaps at Lago. 40 years? I didn't even know computers went back that far... :wink: Well it's good to have someone with your experience to sort it all out because if it weren't for FSUIPC patching the ADVDRV.DLL in FS2002 I would have hung up my developers boots along time ago. Please don't spend too much time on this one, it's a bit of a capricious request I know.

BTW in FS2004 those lessons come out white on grey, not on green. I didn't try FS2002 (no use looking backwards if I can't solve it for new versions).

I have recieved confirmation that our latest ABL adventures work in FS2004 and they have the white/green message window. Hmm, it appears that may be another window in addition to the green one, perhaps for text messages in particular - interesting.

Cheers,

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Some good news for you. I experimented a bit with the function I am already calling in FS to display messages, and I found a way to get white-on-green rather than red-on-green, but only for static (non-scrolling) messages.

I'll make this an option in FSUIPC's Technical page. I cannot make it programmable at present -- too close to release to make drastic changes. I've had to modify AdvDisplay.DLL as well, in case it is installed. FSUIPC sends things direct to FS if AdvDisplay isn't installed, but else they are routed through it.

These facilities will be in FSUIPC 3.00 and AdvDisplay 2.11.

Regards,

Pete

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I should learn to use more discretion about requests like this so close to a release. :D

I imagine this will also be accessed via offset 3380 and the user will choose which colour he desires via the option on the technical page. I reckon this solution is more than sufficient, unless you like tinkering that is. :D

Brilliant stuff Pete!

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