FrancoisD, March 27th, 2012
This past weekend saw me hop on a regional jet from Amsterdam to Munich in Germany, to attend the Aerosoft Conference held in the city's wonderful aviation museum, the Flugtwerft. Aerosoft is one of the world's foremost developers and distributors of flight simulation (add-on) software and organizes this conference every year, now for the 10th time already. Although it is not as big and famous as the 'Dutch FS Weekend', it is surely worth visiting. If not for finding out news about the 'hobby' then at least to meet with some of the major companies in the industry and meet with developers and other enthusiasts face to face.
And as I have explained many times before, aviation and flightsimming IS the same for many people. The passion is the same, the goal is pretty much the same too. Read More >>
FrancoisD, October 28th, 2011
Maybe not your everyday's title when reading an aviation column in a largely US centered publication. On the other hand, who doesn't have some or other fantasy with the word 'Paris'? Not only is it still one of the most wonderful and special cities in the world, it is also home to a lot of aviation history! And although Let's Go Flying may be focusing on getting NEW people to fly, it all started with 'them old folks' way back when. They not only invented these 'flying machines' - and they were exactly that! - but they also had the incredible courage of mounting them and taking off where nobody had ever gone before...... up into the sky !
(Maybe) fortunately that is not how things go anymore. Nowadays you typically go to a small airfield, enter the flying school and start taking lessons, maybe after a trial lesson. And those lessons are done in perfectly safe and thoroughly tested aircraft, with well trained instructors, in a very much regulated world of aviation, technology and science. Read More >>
FrancoisD, August 4th, 2010
By Francois A. ‘Navman’ Dumas – August 2010
Dear AOPA members, I know I have been AWOL for some time. The reason being a very hectic and sometimes even dramatic life over the past year. But I'm back and blogging again, in various places! One such place is right HERE at Let's Go Flying, and another one is Why Fly Inc., of which I am co-owner and the tech wizard now, as well as contributor.
And we need READERS! So come and have a look when you have a passion for flying, or just want to know why OTHERS have a passion for it. It is totally FREE!
That's what Why Fly is all about. And in that sense it is really complementary to organizations such as AOPA and EAA, aiming for the exact same goal: getting people to love flying!
Back to flight simming.........
So what’s an armchair pilot?
Or, come to think of it, why would I want to write about that?
‘Armchair Pilots’ are what many flightsimmers call themselves. They ‘fly’ on a monitor (TV screen) attached to a desktop computer. Using, predominantly, Microsoft’s Flight Simulator, they can mimic real flight, learn manoeuvres, practice, or just fantasize about being a pilot … from the chair at their desk … and, sometimes, from a more-than-real, home-built-cockpit!! Read More >>
FrancoisD, May 1st, 2009
As some of you may know, Microsoft closed its long-running development of Flight Simulator and sacked the entire team developing and maintaining it. They thereby delivered a powerful blow to REAL aviation as well, since FS is and always has been an important platform to get people informed about flying and aviation in general. Read More >>
FrancoisD, January 28th, 2009
I hope you have read my previous post, titled 'A Monumental Error', about the demise of the Flight Simulator development group at Microsoft aka ACES Studio. There you can read about the 'state of shock' most veteran flightsimmers are in. And as I already alluded to, many of those people are pilots in real life as well, and quite a number of them only started thinking about flying a real aircraft after having met aviation through their PC and MS Flight Simulator. Read More >>
FrancoisD, January 28th, 2009
That's what I call the closure of the ACES Studio at Microsoft last week. Among the 1400 employees laid off in Redmond was the entire staff bar 6 of the 100+ Microsoft Flight Simulator (and Train Simulator) crew. That basically puts a stop to 27 years years of continuous development of one of the world's most well-known programs and the 'icon' of the flight simulation industry. Read More >>
FrancoisD, December 15th, 2008
Hello dear readers,
My name is François A. Dumas, aka 'Navman', and despite my French name I am born and living in The Netherlands, with a little 'pied à terre' in the French Alps, near 'my' airfield. I am one of the European AOPA members and was invited to help get more people 'into the air' as it were. Although I am a pilot and a 50-year long aviation nut I don't have a current license, but I have something else to bring to the table: I have been involved (and am now even professionally so) with flight simulation for over 30 years!. Read More >>