Grumpy Tales

francois3My good friend Miguel often calls me grumpy, a name that until recently I myself attached to quite a few people older than me. Since I am rapidly growing older myself, or so it seems of late, I guess I’m as grumpy as the next old guy. That is if you think 57 is old.
I do, especially on those days that all the old — and new — little pains get out of bed together with me. Hurting back from 40-years old volleybal injury, a hurting toe from god-knows-what, stiff shoulder.
Heck, I can’t even brush my teeth sometimes in the morning, my back hurts when bending over to the wash basin.

So in my mind this gives me all the rights I need to write a ‘Grumpy Column’ every once in awhile, and this one is the first in a series. Maybe now I don’t have to spill it all out on Skype and Miguel can go his business walking his dogs in his holiday resort, without having to worry about his one and only managing editor. Mind you, not all of it is to do with flight simulators. There are many more things in my life, fortunately. And quite a few little annoyances, UNfortunately. But hey, maybe you recognize some of your own and my rants and musings give you a chuckle. If not, just discard and move on.

So what got me grumpy recently? How about the seemingly unending stream of Useless Software currently hitting the market? I mean, I don’t mind if people want to sell crap, make a quick buck, maybe even believing their ‘products’ are the best thing since sliced bread. And I don’t mind buyers believing it, or maybe even being happy with it. You’d be surprised at what some consumers think is a great product! But it does bother me that I cannot always air my doubts and try and prevent unwary customers from believing everything that’s written in the PR, articles, product pages and news clippings… OR on some of the forums. Even by me. Hey, I’m trying to make a living, one way or the other, or both.

Now this is a free world and everybody has every right to sell and buy whatever his/her heart — and wallet — desires and allows, but gimme a break, people. Who needs yet another 737 engine SOUND? I mean, I know I am deaf, comes with the grumpy age, but do you honestly believe there is ANYONE out there that can actually hear a difference — on a flippin’ PC, mind you !! — between version 1.3.04.b of a Rolls Royce jet engine and the next version???? More so because probably ALL of them are made from the very same sound recording of the neighbor’s lawn mower, amplified and doctored to sound ‘just like the real thing’. I mean, we all ‘Photoshop’ these days, why would sound be any different?

Or how about pasting yet another version of the same SRTM mesh data on a spot of the earth after all the major mesh builders/producers have covered the virtual earth already 10 times over? Or yet another ugly-looking bit of satellite photos pasted onto what WAS a perfectly fine bit of simulator earth? Sure, you can, you can even like it, but don’t expect me to roll out flags and start frantically jumping up and down with joy.
Yet another new ‘exciting mission’?? I am slowly starting to get convinced that adding the Missions in FSX was the WORST thing that MS could have done, except for closing their business on us. Oh not because it doesn’t work fine, or because it wouldn’t have endless possibilities. It has. But making a really GOOD mission, with professional voice-overs, a ‘plot’ and including something NEW is still as far away from reality as crocodiles are from the melting north pole.

Folks, believe you me, there must be a good reason for the fact that the German Farming Simulator is — and has been for many months — by far the best selling product of all flight simulator titles.

Maybe I’m right, uh?

Now, nobody will be able to accuse me of not being honest. Fact is that I indirectly make money from anything simMarket sells. So please folks, bring on the crappy products and continue buying them. Thank you !

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Doug Zabizewski
Saturday, November 7, 2009 10:40

I just wish there was a little less “add-on” bashing going on. I have tried two in the last month that deserve very high praise, and several others that deserve high praise. I just don’t like when anything gets “clumped” into a category and then labeled crap. Each product has to be judged on it’s own merits. I think that is the fair way to go about it anyhow. And i can definitely say that my experience with both simflight and simmarket has been nothing but top notch. I have never been edited. My words have never been changed. And… Read more »

Paul Laube
Tuesday, November 3, 2009 00:17

What we need is a chip in our head like the former AMD CEO who is being charged with insider trading. Maybe that would help our memory problems. But can we overclock ourselves with it?

Paul Laube
Monday, November 2, 2009 11:48

Yeah but you know the doctors put you in a sleep lab at our ages too to see if we have any issues or to make the extra buck! I tried to explain to them that my wife always says I look like a wide mouth bass
on the couch when I pass out after a long day teaching, not good enough, they want to run tests. More foolish tests!

Monday, November 2, 2009 08:59

LOL, no, I don’t have TIME to sleep, I usually sit here in my little office and type messages to Facebook, our support forums, simFlight news, design websites and write books….. if I’m not on the road riding or flying. I’ll sleep at the end 🙂

Paul Laube
Monday, November 2, 2009 01:36

Damm the spelling again !