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Topsky Feature Requests and Questions


Matisse VanWezer (1385143)
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Matisse VanWezer (1385143)

Most of these are just some quality of live improvements where some might be more popular than others.

In no particular order:

"Transfer" to unicom

In our version the "free/release" button is kind of hidden away even though it is one of the most used buttons during a typical session. Being able to release aircraft, with next sector unicom, via the transfer button would be awesome. Additionally, it would also allow for an easier release to unicom for CPDLC aircraft, which we now circumvent with a freetext CPDLC message. The "free" button is of course still necessary for when the sector sequence fails for example.

Transfers to breaking controllers

More often than not controllers are not fully aware of controllers in "breaking/leaving" mode. It might be a nice addition to throw a popup indicating the controller is leaving soon and ask if the controller is sure he wants to transfer to this controller. Some mouse wrapping on it would sweeten the deal even more!

SEP tools as tag functions

This one speaks for itself.

CPDLC auto connect

It's been done for sign-in so why not for CPDLC. I assume it's the first thing controllers who intent to use it do when they logon. I could definitely see some issues where this wouldn't work (controllers taking over, sub tower controllers), but having the option at least leaves us with that responsibility.

Area's from EC NM

The network manager publishes restricted airspace for many European FIRs already. And if I'm not mistaking, it will do so for many more in the future. It shows many more areas that currently don't come online with a notam. 

CALLSIGN* 

This is an issue where callsign shows a * when a pilot (correctly) set squawk 1000 without having it assigned by any controller. Could this be supressed for this squawk (potentially by just assigning the squawk with the plugin)?

https://prnt.sc/26cfgjx Even if 1000 would not be valid it's not an issue because that would throw other warnings. 

Striped line when assigning DCTs

This might not be for everyone but here it goes. When in the direct menu and choosing a WPT, it already shows it as if the dct was given. An option to continue to show the full route until the direct has been properly given would be nice. Instead, it would show a striped/dotted line between the waypoint you are hovering and the aircraft like so: https://prnt.sc/26d872i (when hovering over BULAM in the list)

Visual point outs for coordination

Since we are not sitting in the same room as our coordinating controller, a visual point out might be handy. For example by highlighting an aircraft for a few seconds, flashing the tag, something similar to IDENT... It makes it much easier to find the aircraft someone is talking about.

Highlight FIR route in FP

In very long FPs it's sometimes very hard to find step climbs and nuances. Shrinking the search area might be able to accommodate this in the most realistic way possible. 

 

I'd like to end with some questions I have regarding ES plugins.

Can plugins read active runways (and changes) during a session?

Can plugins read default commands? (.break, .contactme)?

  • The .break command might be interesting to send over an API so that services like VATSPY and vPILOT can show pilots a controller is closing soon.
  • If a .contactme command is detected, a plugin may automatically add another message saying "Please do not reply to this message".

With Topsky reaching it fullest potential sooner rather than later, what is the end goal here? Will you allow stand alone parts to be their own plugin? Are you going to accept non-true topsky features that may represent other ATM clients?

 

Looking forward to your thoughts,

 

Matisse

 

Edited by Matisse VanWezer
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  • Matisse VanWezer (1385143) changed the title to Topsky Feature Requests and Questions
Juha Holopainen
On 13/01/2022 at 18:11, Matisse VanWezer said:

Area's from EC NM

I have not come across a download location for AUP/UUP data. While it is available from the Eurocontrol website, there is no way for the plugin to download the latest data. There is a tool that can be used to convert a manually copy/pasted data set into a manual areas activation file, a link to the tool was posted on this forum some time ago.

On a related note, the SNOWTAMs functionality in the plugin currently has no source for data as FAA hasn't updated their systems to be able to handle the new format. If anyone knows a new source for global data, I'm interested.

On 13/01/2022 at 18:11, Matisse VanWezer said:

This is an issue where callsign shows a * when a pilot (correctly) set squawk 1000 without having it assigned by any controller. Could this be supressed for this squawk (potentially by just assigning the squawk with the plugin)?

While there are countless local variations and exceptions to all rules in aviation, generally speaking it is not correct for a pilot to squawk 1000 without being asked to do so. In any case, assigning the squawk will remove the star.

On 13/01/2022 at 18:11, Matisse VanWezer said:

Striped line when assigning DCTs

The route data comes directly from EuroScope, and the behavior comes directly from it (personally I like it as it provides a handy automatic probe function as well as long as you wait about 5 seconds to get FPCP to update)

On 13/01/2022 at 18:11, Matisse VanWezer said:

Can plugins read active runways (and changes) during a session?

Yes

On 13/01/2022 at 18:11, Matisse VanWezer said:

Can plugins read default commands? (.break, .contactme)?

The break status can be read, the commands themselves not (unless you directly read keyboard inputs). It is also not possible to send messages on the frequency or private chat using a plugin.

On 13/01/2022 at 18:11, Matisse VanWezer said:

With Topsky reaching it fullest potential sooner rather than later, what is the end goal here? Will you allow stand alone parts to be their own plugin? Are you going to accept non-true topsky features that may represent other ATM clients?

The plugin has not been coded to easily strip out specific features out, so the limiting factor will likely be the amount of work required to isolate the code for the specific feature. The primary goal for the plugin is to replicate the software used here in Finland, secondarily the COOPANS software. Features from other TopSky builds are possible if they do not conflict with existing features or cause too much work. Features from other ATM systems are fairly unlikely.

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Bernardo Reis (1096507)
6 hours ago, Juha Holopainen said:

The primary goal for the plugin is to replicate the software used here in Finland, secondarily the COOPANS software. Features from other TopSky builds are possible if they do not conflict with existing features or cause too much work. Features from other ATM systems are fairly unlikely.

Are you planning to include new COOPANS features to the next Topsky versions?

Looking specifically at:

  • Re-sectorization symbol;
  • Sound alert symbol;
  • System message symbol;
  • LLZ on AHDG window;
  • Weather warning on label;

etc.

If you need any reference we would be happy to provide you with that. Thanks!

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Juha Holopainen

The plugin currently incorporates almost all of my knowledge of the COOPANS software features, so to make further plans, I'd need source material - as detailed as possible.

While I can't guarantee a specific feature will make it into the plugin's next or any future version, any material I get my hands on will be kept for the future

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