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Comment: DF is kind of a tragedy (Score 1) 134

by jez9999 (#47415239) Attached to: Dwarf Fortress Gets Biggest Update In Years

I really had high hopes for Dwarf Fortress; I kind of like complex strategy games with steep learning curves, and I could even get used to the wacky interface. I remember the precise moment I just decided to stop playing it, though; when dwarves started complaining about their clothing being ragged. You have to have an entire economy. To make clothes. For your dwarves.

And this isn't some accident, it's by design. For me, they've gone so far into the micromanagement that the game just isn't fun at all, it's tedious. And that's really a shame because I think if they hit the right spot with the complexity, it could be really great. I had been looking forward to making some really big complex dungeons, but making clothes for dwarves and getting the idiots to actually put the new clothes on, all the time? Fuck it.

Comment: Re: Entrusting our lives to complex software (Score 1) 463

The parent wasn't quite right, in reality software flies your airplane 100% of your journey right now.

Modern Boeing and Airbus designs are pure fly by wire. 100% of the time you fly it though software. The engines are FADEC (full authority digital engine controls).

Comment: Re:Power? We dont need no stink'n power! (Score 1) 463

Autoland has been a thing since the early 70s. The first aircraft to have it, the Hawker Siddeley Trident 3 (an aircraft similar to the Boeing 727 in layout - three engines at the back of the aircraft and T-tailed) was flying autolandings in pretty much zero visibility decades ago.

Comment: Re:Power? We dont need no stink'n power! (Score 1) 463

Since all modern large airliners are fly by wire, you're screwed anyway.

Airliners have multiple redundant power buses. Each engine has a generator, and there is also an APU (auxilliary power unit) which has a generator. If all three fail (for example, because the plane ran out of fuel, it's happened, or flies through a flock of Canada geese and loses all engines and for some reason the APU won't start) there is a ram air turbine that sticks out into the airflow and powers a generator. There is also a mandated amount of reserve battery power. Talking of losing all engine power, the Airbus A320 that went in the Hudson has purely electronic controls, and remained controllable after a double engine failure.

Comment: Re: Failsafe? (Score 1) 463

That's not how it works at all.

Airliners pretty much since the jet age have had at least some measure of "envelope protection". In the 60s this was pretty simple - just a stick pusher to prevent stalls since stalls in many airliners can easily become unrecoverable. Airbus's envelope protection is much more sophisticated than just a stick pusher.

However when there's a systems failure the Airbus systems will automatically drop to a different control law that effectively works like basic stick and rudder flying.

Boeing uses fly by wire now too by the way.

When you don't know what you are doing, do it neatly.