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Coastline Vectors

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100
Forgive me posting an old question if it has long been answered. "search" reveals thousands of results and that is all to confusing for one such as I. ;)

Also - I apologise most sincerely in advance if I upset the original artist for wanting to break his payware coastlines. Actually this is probably aimed at FTX or UTX.

Right, the problem:

I am creating a new addin airfield for Misty Moorings. I am using a combination (in any order - whatever works) of ADE, AFX and Instant Scenery (V1.4))

In the real world maps, Vallenar Creek (just to the west of Ketchikan PAKT) is tidal and there is a small inlet, which is also detailed quite well on PlanG maps.

I succeded with adding a new water polygon, but there was a piece of shoreline across the inlet. Soooo I added an exclude poly. This promptly removed the whole section of coastline all the way around the coast as seen on the topdown screeny. The blue outline shows the new bay/inlet I added. The yellow outline shows the flatten and the red line marks the vector object for the FTX or UTX coastline element.

Yes,I understand - an exclude will exclude the whole object.

So I re-drew a new shoreline vector. Nothing to it really - apart from being fiddly.

What I don't know is which shoreline element to use. The obvious "ocean" one looks awful - as you can see. Is there a way to access the "official" vector objects from the addon payware? Is there a list with images that actually shows what choices are there when making new sceneries?

The attached images should help localise and explain. Thanks.

And be gentle - I am still merely a newbie exploring possibilities.
 

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rhumbaflappy

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If you use TMFViewer with the addon scenery, you may be able to see the GUID used for the shorelines in that package. Then you can use that number to draw the new shorelines with the addon look.

If the GUID is the same as the default then the addon may use a different texture set, and those would be in the texture folder of one of the addons. Where you place your BGL file could determine which texture it is using.

Dick
 
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Forgive me posting an old question if it has long been answered. "Search" reveals thousands of results and that is all to confusing for one such as I. ;)
When CBris opens a post on the topic of "What Shores" (...to use), a number of informative (and jovial) replies come to (my) mind! :p

But perhaps the following might prove interesting to you (...and others ?) :rolleyes:


Also - I apologize most sincerely in advance if I upset the original artist for wanting to break his payware coastlines. Actually this is probably aimed at FTX or UTX.
Practically all FS scenery objects are referenced by a GUID.

[EDITED]
If an object is installed and set active in the FS scenery library (or listed / 'defined' in Terrain.Cfg), when "called" by a XML (or CVX vector) placement BGL, the object will be found by FS and rendered.

[END_EDIT]


The display priority system utilized by the FS rendering engine is based primarily on the physical "Area" layer position in the FS scenery library 'stack of layers' (stored in the active copy of the "Scenery.CFG" file).

Scenery object placement instructions in BGL’s in higher layers of the FS scenery library have greater priority over other scenery object placement instructions in BGL’s that are located in lower layers of the FS scenery library.

Thus when one sets out to modify an existing scenery mileu at a particular location in the FS world, one commonly will create an "exclude" BGL which instructs the FS rendering engine to suppress display of a specific type of scenery object located in lower layers of the FS scenery library.

One may also opt to “replace” the excluded scenery object with a new scenery object which may be from either the default FS scenery object BGL files, or 3rd-party add-on BGL files.

Consequently one need never alter most, if not all, original scenery object source file BGL's when creating or modifying a FS scenery area.

However, when one excludes certain CVX vector scenery object types, the "clip" attributes for that scenery object as defined in the FSX SDK may result in eradication of the entire object within a particular LOD / QMID-sized area.

For most FS CVX vector scenery objects the "clip" area size is LOD 9 (aka QMID 11).

Vector-based freeway traffic clip size is LOD 13 (aka QMID 15).

So, in some cases one must replace the excluded content for the entire clip area in addition to adding in one's new/edited content.


I am creating a new add-in airfield for misty moorings. I am using a combination (in any order - whatever
works) of ADE, AFX and Instant Scenery (v1.4)

In the real world maps, Vallenar Creek (just to the west of Ketchikan PAKT) is tidal, and there is a small inlet, which is also detailed quite well on Plan G maps.
That looks like an excellent area to build some scenery; I’m surprised that more detail was not originally allocated to that area in Ultimate Terrain X Alaska and/or Misty Fjords/Tongass Fjords X. :scratchch


What I don't know is which shoreline element to use. The obvious "ocean" one looks awful - as you can see. Is there a way to access the "official" vector objects from the add-on payware?
Although the vector shoreline type you're using in your screenie looks okay to me, one can apparently make use of 3rd-party CVX vector objects with a little bit of work (which need only be performed once if all 3rd party add-on content is already installed and configured 'correctly').


AFAIK, the following might be a way to make such 3rd-party content accessible via ADE:


3rd-Party XML place-able FS scenery library objects are accessible in ADE via:

ADE Menu > Tools > Library Object Manager > "Add Objects" > (Browse / Select / Click 'Open' on FS scenery library BGL file)



IIUC, accessing custom 3rd-party CVX vector scenery object content in ADE requires a different process:

1.) Make a local ZIP backup of [FSX install Path]\Terrain.Cfg

2.) Make a local ZIP backup of both [ADE install Path]\shapeVectorList.dat and [ADE install Path]\shapePolyList.dat

3.) In a plain ASCII text editor (ex: Windows Notepad), examine the Field structure in a COPY of both [ADE install Path]\shapeVectorList.dat and [ADE install Path]\shapePolyList.dat.


NOTE: The ADE *.DAT Field delimiter in the above files is a "|" ('vertical bar') character generated by pressing { Shift + \ } (...meaning hold down the Shift key + tap the 'backslash' key)


4.) In a plain ASCII text editor (ex: Windows Notepad), examine the structure in a COPY of [FSX install Path]\Terrain.Cfg.


NOTE: Custom 3rd party add-on content definitions commonly begin with those for Ultimate Terrain products at the "[Texture.389]" position.


5.) In a plain ASCII text editor (ex: Windows Notepad), edit the structure in a COPY of [FSX install Path]\Terrain.Cfg to derive new Records to 'edit in' at the end of both [ADE install Path]\shapeVectorList.dat and [ADE install Path]\shapePolyList.dat.

6.) Save the above 2 edited files as plain ASCII text into the [ADE install Path] main root folder, allowing permission to overwrite both [ADE install Path]\shapeVectorList.dat and [ADE install Path]\shapePolyList.dat.


Thorough testing may reveal whether this works (and/or 'continues' to work) OK in FSX SP2 / Acceleration with a current / future version of ADE. :alert:


BTW: If the above process doesn't work satisfactorily after reasonable efforts, make a local ZIP backup of both "edited" [ADE install Path]\shapeVectorList.dat and [ADE install Path]\shapePolyList.dat into a single file named ex: 'ADE_Shape_Lists_Edited.zip'

Then restore the original [ADE install Path]\shapeVectorList.dat and [ADE install Path]\shapePolyList.dat by un-ZIP-ing them from their ZIP backups, allowing permission to overwrite both the "edited" copies of those files.


Is there a list with images that actually shows what choices are there when making new sceneries?
IIRC, thumbnails of FS 'default' scenery objects are either included with a full installation of ADE, or are available for download via the Scruffyduck ADE website.


Thumbnails of FS 3rd-party "EZ-Scenery"-type library objects are available on FS download sites, and can be manually added to an installation of ADE via:

ADE Menu > Tools > Library Object Manager > "Find Thumbnail" > (Browse / Select / Click 'Open' on image files)


Alternatively, one may create new thumbnails for FS 3rd-party "EZ-Scenery"-type library objects not yet available on FS download sites via:

ADE Menu > Tools > Library Object Manager > "Capture New Thumbnail" > (Click-Drag / Space Bar to 'Select' on FS image area).


Thumbnails of 3rd-Party CVX vector-type scenery objects must be created manually as above... using 'Capture New Thumbnail' as described in the ADE Manual.


I hope this information helps provide a comprehensible initial "orientation" to accessing default and 3rd-party FSX scenery object content in ADE. :teacher:

Obviously, some of the latter procedures involving editing FSX 'Terrain.Cfg' and ADE *.DAT files... is more likely to be of interest to advanced users of those 3 files; but hopefully this may stimulate further inquiry and discussion on how to further extend the existing functionality of ADE for use with custom 3rd party scenery object content. :)


PS: I'd welcome feedback here by "Scruffyduck" as to feasibility / workability of the proposed modifications, if used in the current version of ADE. :wave:

FYI: Part of this subject has been discussed previously here:

http://www.fsdeveloper.com/forum/showthread.php?t=11391&highlight="shapePolyList.dat"


Regards,

GaryGB
 
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Hi Chris:

It may be some time until Scruffyduck considers what, if any, extension of functionality to implement in ADE for accessing custom 3rd-party scenery content, given his already considerable "to-do list" dealing with the complexities of airport-specific FS features and closely-related scenery content. :eek:


FYI: Many FS developers find it preferable to make use of SBuilderX for "terrain-specific content", as that utility is geared more for non-airport-specific scenery development. :idea:

[EDITED]
NOTE: It is likely that one is able to extend the functionality of SBuilderX for use with custom 3rd-party scenery content (since Holger and others are probably already doing this, IMHO) by first backing up to local *.ZIP files, then implementing edits to... COPIES of:

[END_EDIT]

  • [SBuilderX install path]\Tools\Lands.txt
  • [SBuilderX install path]\Tools\Lines.txt
  • [SBuilderX install path]\Tools\Polys.txt
  • [SBuilderX install path]\Tools\Waters.txt

This process would likely involve once again, careful analysis of- and editing copies of- your backed-up [FSX install path]\Terrain.Cfg to derive the necessary data required for the above files... in order to access custom 3rd-party scenery content in SBuilderX. ;)


Hope this might prove to be another viable option as you consider "What Shores" ...to use in your scenery endeavors ! :)


Regards,

GaryGB
 
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Messages
100
I should come back and check more often - or set alerts to notify!

Clarifying my understanding:

Basically if I "interrupt" someone else's vector, mesh, poly - whatever - with a mask/flatten/exclude poly of my own, I will hide that other item completely.

All these extra "need-to-knows" I am finding rather complex because it involves not just one fix, but up to dozens depending on who's "underneath" what I am doing.

I am noticing too, with libraries, that it is all so blessed haphazard! Just look at the EZ objects libraries... many of the objects are broken (i.e. black textures or no models)

There is little logic in FSX layout where various geographical bits and bobs can be found. It would be so nice if there was a visibla and user usable structure:

mesh, flattens, polys, vectors, objects andf that all was peaches... Oh I am sure it is all there, but I am a visually orientated creature seeing is more important that reading code. I'd just like to be able to open a "tool" and say I want that to go there, press a button and see it in action now.

Learning curves! Who needs 'em? :D
 
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There is an FS9 tool, LWMViewer2, that pretty much does all that. Unfortunately the terrain formats were changed for FSX so that great tool won't function.

scott s.
.
 
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100
Sorry folks, I gave up. Far too many complicated words in the long run. What I want is something intuitive that works without any delving.

I made another scenery elsewhere.

If I find a way I'll let you know what it was I was looking for.

Incidentally...

For some totally different reason, I was "forced" to have a look at my terrain.cfg and what a blessed surprise. All the vector descriptions for coastlines, lakes, landclasses, what have you are there.
 
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'Bumped' for edit in my post #3 above:

http://www.fsdeveloper.com/forum/showpost.php?p=154946&postcount=3



PS: Check back here again; more info to come on "accessing 3rd party content" via ADE utilizing Terrain.Cfg custom object definitions... :stirthepo

Sorry folks, I gave up. Far too many complicated words in the long run. What I want is something intuitive that works without any delving.

I made another scenery elsewhere.

If I find a way I'll let you know what it was I was looking for.

Incidentally...

For some totally different reason, I was "forced" to have a look at my terrain.cfg and what a blessed surprise. All the vector descriptions for coastlines, lakes, landclasses, what have you are there.
Hi Chris:


FYI: One might gain additional insights on the wondrous things seen in Terrain.Cfg by reading Luis Feliz-Tirado's Tutorial: "Fun With Lines" ;)

http://forums1.avsim.net/index.php?autocom=tutorials&article=14


NOTE: I find these to be particularly informative statements in his tutorial: :teacher:

"There are some people who have been using their own line definitions in scenery as well, such as Holger and others. And, both Christian Fumey's Ground2K4 and Luis de Sá's SBuilder allow for such new lines."

and...

"If you use Ground2K4, there is nothing more to do; this program uses the line definitions directly from the terrain.cfg and they will appear in the line selection window.

If you use SBuilder, then you must find the lines.txt file and add the following:...
"




BTW: Sorry for all the verbal complexity... IMHO, the FS SDK compels abundant "3rd party explanation" most of the time. :eek:


No doubt these are rather advanced topics, but if we take a break now and then, when we come back to our various projects, we might be surprised how things begin to seem increasingly comprehensible as time goes by. :idea:


When I hit some 'walls' way too many times :banghead: I just "archive" that project with all source data etc. and revisit it later on. :whiteflag

GaryGB
 
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Hi Mike:

I suppose one might have a certain "Reverence" for 3rd party content, especially when it is of very good quality ! :p


In the scenarios I would propose, one would not even allow activation of a BGL which makes a "call" or "reference" to custom 3rd party scenery content (ex: library object or Terrain.Cfg listed item / definition) unless one has FIRST verified that any such content and mapped textures are already physically present, properly configured, and "active" on one's own FS installation. :idea:


Regardless of EULA considerations, IMHO one's first responsibility to the FS Community is to "DO NO HARM" ...if possible, while keeping the playing field level for all concerned about maximizing the FS experience for everyone on an equitable basis.


If any BGL calls an object and/or a mapped texture that is not already installed / active in FS, FS performance and the end user experience will likely be impaired, and in some cases, FS will simply crash or not start up. :eek:


IMHO, the same caveat would apply if one considered distributing one's "placement" BGLs that call custom 3D or 2D 3rd party scenery content via XML or CVX methods, whether the author of any custom "non-default" 3rd party content is the end user... or another author of freeware or payware. :rolleyes:


As I see it, one's installer would properly FIRST verify that the end user has any objects and their mapped textures already physically present and properly configured on their FS installation BEFORE allowing for decompression and activation of such "placement" BGLs.


Also, inherent in the same process as described, one's installer would properly FIRST verify that the required Terrain.Cfg listed items / definitions are already entered into Terrain.Cfg by the appropriate methods.


Additionally, IMHO, one's distribution package should also include alternate BGL's called by a "testing/decision/branching routine" in one's installer, that utilizes instead the default scenery content... so that in the event that an end user's FS installation does not (yet ?) have all required custom 3rd party scenery content installed / properly configured, they will still be able to render "some version" of one's intended scenery as designed. ;)


Hope this helps better convey what I'm envisioning here. :)

GaryGB
 
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Hi Mike:


I appreciate your sharing a specific concern to be considered within this thread's conceptual discussion about accessing 3rd party content. :)

However, I'm not seeing a "problem" with the scenario as I described it here thus far. ;)


NOTE: As of the 11 posts prior to this one, the word "OrbX" only appears in your posts (4 times).


BTW: Speaking of grammar, I wonder if "OrbX" would best be interpreted as a Noun, Pronoun, Adjective, Preposition, or something else entirely ? :rolleyes:


My point is, is that... oops, got flustered... and now I've gone and "double copula"-ted my sentence. :D

"The double copula, also known as the double is and reduplicative copula, is the nonstandard usage of two successive copulae in the English language when only one is necessary".

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Double_copula


Hmmm... lemmesee, where was I; surely I wasn't describing a scenario where end users do what they want on their own computers in the privacy of their own homes, and in the privacy of their own FS installations... until "OrbXs" < still not sure what an "OrbX" is, or whether they actually exist > ...march into their virtual worlds through their modems like digital jack-booted thugs wearing uniforms and arm bands, or "Men In Black" show up at their doors ...to enforce EULAs ? :confused:

NOTE: IIRC, international copyright law interpretations hold that all rights to an author's work are conveyed to that author from the instant that work is created by the author (except under specific written contractual terms in a properly executed agreement).

Fascinating, isn't it, that for the good of the FS Community, we usually choose not to hold others accountable for referencing, linking to, or "quotation" of our posts in FS Forums such as this one ? :p



GaryGB
 
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Hi GaryGB,

You are quite right in your response to my posts, and I apologize for that. I guess I figured that if someone went to the trouble of creating their own shoreline vectors that they just might plan on releasing the scenery to the public.

I can see that my posts weren't appropriate and I will edit them out.

Many thanks, Mike Mann
 
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Hi Mike:

No need to delete posts, IMHO... a vigorous discussion is usually a good thing, since we may all gain new insights as a result. :idea:


FYI: I agree "if someone went to the trouble of creating their own shoreline vectors that they just might plan on releasing the scenery to the public".

I'd anticipate that by the time one figures out Terrain.Cfg functionality, one might just be able to create one's own "custom 3rd party content" that may be even better than that made by another author... which is why I posted the 'content' below < which I graciously gave myself permission to quote > to illustrate that point. ;)

FYI: One might gain additional insights on the wondrous things seen in Terrain.Cfg by reading Luis Feliz-Tirado's Tutorial: "Fun With Lines" ;)

http://forums1.avsim.net/index.php?autocom=tutorials&article=14


NOTE: I find these to be particularly informative statements in his tutorial: :teacher:

"There are some people who have been using their own line definitions in scenery as well, such as Holger and others. And, both Christian Fumey's Ground2K4 and Luis de Sá's SBuilder allow for such new lines."

and...

"If you use Ground2K4, there is nothing more to do; this program uses the line definitions directly from the terrain.cfg and they will appear in the line selection window.

If you use SBuilder, then you must find the lines.txt file and add the following:...
"


PS: I really like the fact that you are releasing a series of add-on sceneries, and respect your right to continue doing so, regardless of whether they may... or may not... use custom 3rd party content, FS default content, or both. :)


Regards,

GaryGB
 
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