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One Year of FlightMap

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It’s hard to believe that one year ago today I was launching FlightMap for Android on the Google Play Store. It seems like yesterday. What started as a personal GPS app to fill out my flight simulator cockpit has turned into quite a nice little utility. That first version didn’t do much and only worked on 10 inch tablets which was all I had at the time. It basically followed the airplane from the simulator and allowed you to create adhoc flight plans over google maps and map the next waypoint in the active flight plan in the simulator. Two main modes but for me, the gauges were the big accomplishment even though most people at the time didn’t care much for them. I wrote the app for me to begin with and it just happened that a few people liked it as well and for that I’m very grateful. Looking back it’s hard to believe that there have been 10 major releases of FlightMap in the last year. That’s pretty impressive for any software project 🙂

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Over the next few months I was really able to perfect the flight plan management and display options as well as improve the overall look of the app. The basic design has not changed that much on the 10 inch tablets but it is more refined now with a lot more data on the screen. My beta testers at the time really know the struggle to get the display right. It took a lot of time but I think the outcome was worth it. My main goal has always been to keep the app simple and familiar to pilots and I think I have done that. That goal is the reason I have spent so much time making sure FlightConnect is as simple as it can possibly be and that FlightMap tries to be as smart as possible to require so little from the user to do what it does. Working with a primary simulator that has not been touched by the developer for almost 10 years certainly has made that challenging 🙂 Around this time I was able to add Prepar3D to the supported simulators and I am hoping some of the bugs I’ve run into with FSX will eventually be fixed :).

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About 4 months after the release of FlightMap I was able to release version 2.0. Google had just released the new Nexus 7 and I was fortunate enough to be able to purchase one and start work on supporting it. I didn’t realize at the time how challenging the design I had come up with for the app would be to support on various tablet sizes but I did ultimately figure out a way to do it. Now FlightMap supports all 7, 8, 9, and 10 inch tablets that I have run into. I’m working on fixing an issue with a 21 inch tablet now 🙂 That first 7 inch version was a real challenge though. Trying to fit all of the features in without sacrificing functionality on the smaller screen took a lot of design work. It was ironic to me that the one feature most people said they didn’t want on the 10 inch tablets, the gauges, became the most requested feature on the 7 inch tablets when I didn’t include it in the first release. I was able to find a way to bring the gauges to the 7 inch tablets within a month or so but it was tricky.

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I had a major surgery at the end of August which slowed things down a bit but I was able to continue work on FlightMap and even found time to release a new app called FlightGauge. The most recent release included a refresh of the graphics and new features for the major gauges as well as regional airport, ndb, and vor display. I’m really proud of where FlightMap has come and I’m looking forward to seeing where this goes in the future.

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I am so thankful for all of the users of the software. I have learned so much about aviation from this project and I’m sure I have a ton yet to learn. Thank you for all of the support over the last year.

– Eric

FlightGauge 1.2 Released

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A few days ago FlightGauge 1.2 was released. This version improves the 10 inch tablet view to better utilize the screen space and improve the visibility of the gauges. FlightGauge is a real time second screen instrumentation view that works with Flight Simulator X and Prepar3D. FlightGauge supports 7 inch tablets and larger running Android 4.0+.

FlightGauge is available for purchase on the Android Play Store here:

Get FlightMap on Google Play

FlightGauge 1.1.2 Released

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FlightGauge is a second screen cockpit panel replacement for Flight Simulator aircraft. FlightGauge is designed for Android 4.0+ tablets works with Microsoft Flight Simulator X (FSX) and Prepar3D.

This a quick update version that fixes one known issue and adds one new feature:
– Fixed a display issue with the main overlay on 8 inch tablets
– Added sensor rotation. Now supports either landscape orientation.

FlightGauge is available for purchase on the Android Play Store here:

Get FlightMap on Google Play

FlightMap 2.7 for Android Released

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Vine Ripe Software is pleased to announce the release of FlightMap 2.7 to the Google Play Store. This version includes many new features requested by users including regional airports, NDB’s, VOR’s, any many more. FlightMap is a second screen navigation utility for Microsoft Flight Simulator X (FSX) and Lockheed Martin Prepar3D (P3D). Use FlightMap to plot your simulated location and flight plans on Google Maps in real time.

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FlightMap is available for purchase on the Android Play Store here:
Get FlightMap on Google Play

Here is the full change log:

* Changed: MAP selection button changed to a popup menu for easier selection
* Changed: APT selection button changed to DATA. It’s now a popup menu with more options
* New: DATA – Airports, VOR’s, or NDB’s within ~200 miles of aircraft via DATA menu.
* New: Airport markers now display ICAO
* New: In NAV or PLAN mode press VOR or NDB for info dialog, tap dialog to add station to adhoc flight plan.
* New: The overlay aircraft now scales with the zoom level
* New: Support for automatic switching of landscape orientations. Flip the tablet over…
* Updated: ASI – Updated graphics and added 240 and 280 knot options
* Updated: Direction Indicator – New graphics and added AP Heading bug
* Updated: 7 new overlay aircraft for total of 35
* Improved: Auto Zoom has more steps.
* Improved: More than doubled the hit area of the bottom buttons on 7 and 8 inch tablets

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FlightConnect 2.7 Released

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In preparation for the FlightMap 2.7 release I have updated FlightConnect and it is available for download today. This version changes how FlightMap retrieves the Airports, VOR’s, and NDB’s. This version also decreases significantly the amount of network traffic between FlightConnect and FlightMap/FlightGauge.

Other changes include a new settings dialog that allows you to choose which ip address FlightConnect uses. This option is mainly for users that have multiple network interfaces on their computer. Finally this version also adds an option to turn logging on and off. It is off by default.

I have also released what I think will be the final beta version of FlightMap to my testers. I ran into an issue with a really old FSX bug that has made retrieving data about the airports/ndbs/vors unreliable. I’ve done the best I can to work around it but it is certainly not ideal. If testing all goes well FlightMap 2.7 should be released very soon.

FlightMap 2.7 Beta Update

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I’ve just posted what will hopefully be the final beta of FlightMap to my beta testers. This version has become a lot bigger than I original planned. Here’s some of the great new features and some of them have been requested for a long time:

  • Changed: APT selection button changed to DATA. It cycles DATA -> World Airports -> Regional Airports -> VOR -> NDB
  • New: Display all airports within ~200 miles of aircraft. Markers also show airport id
  • New: Display VOR or NDB overlay. Press marker to display station frequency and id. Press info dialog to add station to adhoc flight plan.
  • New: The overlay aircraft scales with the zoom level!
  • Updated: Added airport ICAO to world airport markers
  • Updated: ASI – Improved Graphics. Added 240 and 280 knot gauges
  • Updated: Direction Indicator – New graphics. Added AP Heading bug
  • Updated: 7 more overlay aircraft for total of 35
  • Improved: Auto Zoom feature has more steps now.
  • Improved: More than doubled the hit area of the selection buttons on 7 and 8 inch tablets

Here are some screenshots showing off these new features.

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FlightGauge Released to the Play Store

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Vine Ripe Software is please to announce the release of our new Android App FlightGauge to the Google Play Store. FlightGauge is a second screen cockpit panel replacement for Flight Simulator aircraft. FlightGauge is designed for Android 4.0+ tablets and works with Microsoft Flight Simulator X (FSX) and Prepar3D.

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FlightGauge is available for purchase on the Android Play Store here:

Get FlightMap on Google Play

A Fully functional 5 minute trial version is also on the Play Store here:

Get FlightMap on Google Play

VOR’s, NDB’s, and Local Airports coming soon to FlightMap

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FlightMap is being updated to support some new adhoc navigation items. The big new items are the NDB and VOR’s within approximately 200 miles of the aircraft. In the screenshot above you will see that the NDB’s are visible and when you press one an information dialog opens and displays the ICAO and Frequency of the NDB. Clicking on the info box will then add the NDB to the current list of Adhoc waypoints.

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The screenshot above shows the same thing but for VOR’s. The VOR icon will show the box around it if the VOR also includes a DME and it works the same way with the information box. These displays make it really handy to set Nav and ADF gauges in the aircraft which in turn looks great in the new FlightGauge app 🙂

FlightMap has also been updated to include the new 240 and 280 knot Air Speed indicators. This is a pretty substantial update and I think you all are really going to like it.

Multi-Engine Support for FlightGauge 1.0

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I have had a number of questions about multiple engine support for the first release of FlightGauge. In the first release the application will support one or two engine aircraft. All of the screen shots I have shown to this point show the single engine version. Here are some shots of the multi-engine version. I have also added 2 more Air Speed Indicators. One for 240 knots and one for 280 knots. The application is coming along nicely and soon I will be testing it all out with Prepar3d. If all goes well with that the release is very soon.

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FlightGauge 1.0 Released to Beta Testers

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FlightGauge is a cockpit panel replacement for almost any of your Flight Simulator aircraft. FlightGauge works on Android 4.0+ tablets between 7 and 10 inches and is designed to work with Microsoft Flight Simulator X (FSX) and Prepar3D.

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The 10 inch layout has been moved around a bit. I tried to make it look more like a Cessna 172 with the engine/electrical gauges on the bottom left. I then added two new gauges to the display. VOR1 indicator with glide slope and an ADF indicator. The ADF indicator rotates with the heading so you don’t need to manually adjust it.

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For the 7 inch layout I had to add the new gauges in so I added a sliding layer to the display. Slide in or tap on the right side of the screen to show and hide the VOR1 and ADF gauges.

If all goes well FlightGauge may launch this weekend.

To keep up to date follow my blog at https://vineripesoftware.wordpress.com/