Computer Hardware and Simulation Gaming for Aviation Safety Considered

Modern day computer hardware is getting quite robust, and there is about 10 times the computing power in a smart phone as was used to fly the first Space Shuttle, maybe more. Still, when it comes to operating today’s aircraft simulators the computer hardware is intense, and these simulators can cost a ton of money. Because they cost so much the time to use them becomes very valuable, therefore most airlines only use them as required to check out their pilots, or train them for certification on the next aircraft that pilot needs to fly so he or she can get their type rating and satisfactorily prove they are safe.

The other day, I was speaking with an expert in computer online gaming communities, Troy Laclaire, about the use of simulators in aviation, and how great these tools were for complying with safety standards and preventing mistakes in the real world, carrying real passengers, when it really mattered most. One question we pondered was should airline pilots, commercial pilots, charter pilots, and fractional jet pilots be required to fly with another pilot to an airport first prior to going there as the pilot in command for the first time.

If such an onerous rule were to be made by the FAA, what about simulators, couldn’t a pilot merely fly the last 5-10 minutes on approach and take-off to each airport that the airline generally went too? Maybe, but in the case of a charter jet, that might mean they’d spend 100s of hours in a simulator and that costs a lot of money right? Okay so is there a solution to all this? Troy has come up with one potential solution, so lets’ talk about this shall we. First, Troy notes:

The only problem with this is that simulators are not exactly cheap to run and each simulation takes a fair amount of time, and far as I understand simulators are mostly used to get pilots comfortable with flying a particular plane type. However, since the pilots are generally already familiar with flying their planes (at least I should hope so) and nearly everyone has computers these days, it is possible that you could have a DVD series created to cover the routes, based around actual flights, and then have the pilots use their computers to run these so that they can get some familiarity with the airports.

Now then, this is a good idea, and it makes sense, a perfect solution, plus it also stands to reason that a gaming expert would come up with this concept. Okay so, Troy also suggests that we “provide the pilots with a take home DVD, basic flight-sim gaming controls, and they can use these to get some muscle memory.” This too makes sense, keeping it simple, and perfect for a last-minute booking for a fractional jet, or charter flight, as the pilot can merely practice a couple of ILS approaches, missed approach, take-off, and navigating the taxi ways, etc.

Troy, being a computer hardware engineer, and quite the prudent safety advisor also states; “Alternatively, have a “pilots room” setup where a pilot can run through a video/basic simulator of a previous flight that has already flown that route, letting them get a rough idea of what to expect when going to an airport they are not yet familiar with.”

Okay so that’s pretty easy, it can be set up in the break room of the local Jet Center, or at an FBO etc. Perhaps, for $10-20 they can shoot a couple of landings at the desired future airport that they will be flying too? Perhaps, it might also be available to ALL general aviation pilots, the DVDs and a flight simulator room at the local FBO, etc. May as well keep the system busy and paying for itself, perhaps it might also spit out certificates of completion and aviation insurance companies may consider lowering rates too? Indeed, I hope you will consider all this and think on it.

Sharpen Your Shooting Skills – Indoors

Shooting simulators are cost effective, easy to use systems which can provide hours of entertainment and skill development for the whole family. You can use one of many replica laser firearms which are available or use you own gun on the simulator. New technology allows you to use your own personal firearm on the simulator, in conjunction with special laser-insert cartridges. Consistency is a key element for good shooting, now you can practice with the same gun on the simulator as you will take out into the field.

There are over 30 hunting and shooting games available for the system. Everything from bear hunting to dove shooting are options on the shooting simulator. Want to teach you kids about Hunter’s Safety?…there is a program for that, want to practice your shooting skills in a non-violent setting?…there are programs for that as well. Easy to setup and easy to use, you can be up and shooting in a matter of minutes. Do you find yourself uneasy at the shooting range? Always worried about someone else and their shooting ethics? All of this can be avoided by using a simulator in your own home. It is a fabulous way to provide a safe and effective learning environment for new shooters.

Want to introduce yourself or a friend to the exciting world of archery? It is a simple add on to the simulator. You can hold a competition with your friends for the high score, all the time building and improving you shooting skills.

Save time and money on your trips to the range, by practicing your shooting in your home. Getting ready for the first hunt of the season? Want to make sure you hit your target with poise? Build the confidence you need by practicing on an indoor shooting simulator, all from the comfort of your own living room or basement.

Playing Deer Hunting Games To Keep You in the Sport During the Off-Season

If you’re avid deer hunter and you’re into video games, deer hunting games could be a fun source of entertainment during the off season. Or if you’re not able to go hunting for real due to time constraints or any other number of reasons, going virtual hunting may get you through the season with at least some of the virtual challenge of the sport.

With the technological advancements of the 21st century, you can find some very challenging and realistic types of games that you can play right in the comfort of your home on your Wii or Xbox or any other video game system. Or you can find some interactive online settings where you can challenge other online hunters to simulation games.

Whichever format you choose, there are a variety of deer hunting games depending on what level of challenge you want and how realistic you want it to feel. And most of these virtual reality games come with a range of themes as well, like different settings for the hunt or different types of weapons depending on the season.

For instance, you may pick a forest environment theme or a guided hunt theme, and then choose the deer hunting season where you’re using either a muzzle-loader or flintlock, bow, rifle or shotgun.

Some of these games may have a theme where you’re only allowed to shoot certain types of deer, for instance, buck season or doe season. Or maybe your challenge is to get a buck with a specific amount of points or you have to bring home a button buck. And the game will be made so realistic that you’ll feel like you’re actually out there hunting, trying to find just that particular type of deer.

Some deer hunting games may even include challenges like coming up on the occasion wild and dangerous animals that you have to avoid while on your hunt, like bear, snakes and other wild creatures that will really test your quick thinking and fast acting skills to keep your virtual hunter alive as well as add to the excitement of the game.

There are also some games that have additional features to give you some realistic challenges in a variety of outdoor hunting and fishing sports that virtually put you in real-life scenarios where you’ll hunt some pretty realistic animals programmed with advanced artificial intelligence.

Whatever format or level of challenge you decide on, there are a lot of deer hunting games to choose from. Ask your friends for their opinions or read the online reviews before deciding. Or pick up a couple so you have a nice variety to keep you busy during the off-season.