• Thank You FlightSim.com

    Thank You, FlightSim.Com

    By Mike McCarthy (7 June, 2011)

    Think about it, folks. Fifteen years of availability at no cost to the public. Professional hosting of 150,000+ add-on files. Articles. Product reviews. Forums. Affiliation with eDimensional a/k/a the Pilot Shop. Support specifically for newcomers to the hobby. Support for FS reaching all the way back to FS4. And on and on and on.

    There are other web sites devoted to the hobby of flight simulation but none can match the overall breadth and depth of FlightSim.Com. That's why I've been hanging out here since ... well ... probably since 1999, first as mikeymcc and more recently as xxmikexx.

    Like most other people I began as a lurker - someone afraid to post to forums for fear of being ridiculed. At first I didn't use the file library either, being somewhere between happy with the unmodified FS5 and afraid to make changes to it. But I read the forums. And I read the articles and reviews. Over time I read perhaps fifty thousand posts. Then I began downloading add-ons, using How-To articles as guides to installing them correctly. And that's when my level of satisfaction with the hobby suddenly increased.

    By that time I was running FS2000, at the beginning the golden age of freeware. Pioneers like Lou Betti and Graham Waterfield began producing high fidelity aircraft of stunning detail in their 3D models and in their panels, putting to shame the default aircraft provided by Microsoft in the base FS product. Others followed in their footsteps so that during the reign of FS2002, thanks to the amazing and selfless work of dozens of skilled new freeware aircraft designers we simmers suddenly had an enormous number of high quality add-on aircraft available to us at no cost whatsoever.

    High fidelity payware aircraft soon followed, with FS2004 being the foundation for the golden age of payware aircraft and utilities, and with the FS Pilot Shop establishing itself as the premier online retailer to the FS community. Yet while I buy payware, spending more than I should, the fact is that to this day I regularly use a lot of freeware, all of it from the FlightSim.Com file library. (Indeed as I write this I'm approaching Iceland in my favorite aircraft, a freeware 727-200 by Erick Cantu.)

    And then ...

    No, wait ...

    There's a lot more I could write but I'm not going to - - not this time, anyway. I'll instead simply say Thank you, webmaster Nels Anderson and partners, for creating, extending and maintaining this site, which has given so many of us countless hours of fun and satisfaction.

    ... ... ??? ... ... !!!

    Oh, what the heck, one more thing I want to say: Nels, an email friend of long standing, may be surprised to learn that I've maintained a paid First Class Membership here for the past five years even though my pace of downloads from the file library has slowed. I do it to help keep the site profitable - - so the file library won't disappear from the face of cyberearth as has happened at other sites that are not managed by paid professionals. The people of FlightSim.Com each have one job only, the care and feeding of FlightSim.Com, a site that is backed up frequently to, and able to run on, two different server farms. It would take simultaneous EMP attacks on two widely separately locations to knock this site off the air.

    No animals were harmed during the creation of this article, nor is there any business relationship between me, FlightSim.Com, Nels Anderson or his partners, or the FS Pilot Shop. Nels did not ask me to write this article, which is straight from the heart, and which will get me nothing but cheekbones sore from smiling as I decide how to end this piece. A modest man, Nels probably will be embarrassed to run it but that's too bad. Thousands of us get an enormous amount of pleasure from hanging out here. The least we can do is say THANK YOU in public.

    I hope others will do the same in Outer Marker. We all respond to attaboys, the small, dedicated staff of FlightSim.Com are people too, and we should give them every encouragement in their ongoing efforts to revamp the site without interruption of service.

    There. Paraphrasing the immortal Tennesee-accented words of Miss Minnie Pearl of the long-ago Grand 'Ole Opry show, "Weah through wrahtin' now."

    Mike McCarthy
    [email protected]

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