• Interview: Keith Walton

    What software tools do you use for development of the Tutor?

    Some developers reading this might be surprised when I tell you.

    1. Airfoil maker to produce the wing shape that defines how the aircraft flies.
    2. Plane maker to produce the basic aircraft.
    3. Paint.net to make the textures.
    4. AC3D to make non Plane maker objects.
    5. Substance Painter to create Physics Based Rendering on the model. Basically this allows parts the models to reflect light like a real world material i.e. glass, plastic, rubber, metal, etc.
    6. Code Blocks to write C++ software code for a Plug-In to give extra functionality to the aircraft.

    Keith Walton - Tutor

    Keith, has your model been used for any training purposes?

    Yes the UK Air Cadets are using the Tutor in a number of ways. In a physical cockpit with three very large screens that duplicate the look and feel of the real Tutor and the view from it. In this instance the model is different to the Community Edition in that there is no virtual cockpit because the model envelops or surrounds the real cockpit the user is in. They are also using a version similar to the Community Edition that is flown using a single large screen monitor. Some of the Air Cadets have gone over to flying in VR.

    What areas of the model do you feel still need to be improved on and will we see these in future updates?

    There is a long list of items. I am planning to make a big upgrade in April 2019 to cover them and I am already working hard on them now. A few of the main items:

    Keith Walton - Tutor

    The exterior aircraft model has been re-made completely from the ground up using data from the real Tutor. The inside of the current version will have a massive makeover which will cover the trim and some of the instruments. One user asked for a sliding canopy animation and it will have one. The GPS is not working in the current version but in the upgrade it will be partially functioning with a capability which will allow the user to select a destination and display the direction and distance information on the HSI.

    Have you ever considered creating a paint kit for all the livery painters out there?

    Eventually - but not yet. The Tutor textures are currently being modified and until a finished format is firmly established it would waste their time because the new livery might not work on the next upgrade. To these guys all I can say is sometime in the future you will have that capability.

    Keith, the Grob Tutor was developed as an X-Plane model, but have you ever considered creating a MSFS version?

    No, I just do not have the knowledge, skill or time to do that.

    Keith Walton - Tutor

    Lastly Keith, as an X-Plane user and developer, what would you like to see added in future updates of X-Plane?

    Until someone actually flies X-Plane in VR for themselves it is very hard to explain to them how real it actually feels. Anyone that has not done so - you must try it to understand that the total immersion factor is exceptional. I would like to see the hand controllers disappear from VR and be replaced by customizable hands i.e. wearing gloves or flesh etc. Also the hand controller buttons to be user definable, as this would allow the simulation of real world HOTAS in the VR world by developers in their add-ons.

    A voice recognition ATC system is high on my wish list. Why not, we have Alexa, Siri and Cortana? It would be a big job to implement but not impossible.

    I have to say the work done by Laminar in the last few years has been superb. So any improvement they make is a bonus for me.

    Keith Walton - Tutor

    Dominic, thank you for giving me the opportunity to communicate with FlightSim.Com and I hope this answers a few of the questions your readers may have about the Tutor Community Edition. Please download the Tutor and have a good time flying it everyone.

    All the best.

    Keith Walton
    Download the Tutor 115E Community Edition

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