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Virtual Landline Software Development


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Hello,

 

I am not a fan of multiple people working on the same (non-profit) software or resources without collaborating, therefore I am reaching out here.

 

Does anyone know of any current project that is being worked on for a Land Line communication system that is of good quality and has serious traction to being complete within 12 months from this post?

 

I heard the AFV people were working on it but I haven't heard any news about their progress in a while.

 

I have a couple software developers that have some networking experience and we would all like to start on this project or help contribute if something is already in place.

Kyle Sanders
VATUSA
ZLC ARTCC

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I really like the Euroscope VCCS system however if I remember correctly all your controllers needs to be on the same server for it to work. This is especially useful between ACC control but many vACCs used different servers. Is there a possibility of having a central server for all? Or is there a central new VCCS system in the works?

CHRISS KLOSOWSKI
Division Director, VATSIM Middle East & North Africa  
VATSIM Network Supervisor, Team 5
##  [email protected] 
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 http://vatsim.me/    
     

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18 hours ago, Kyle Sanders said:

Does anyone know of any current project that is being worked on for a Land Line communication system that is of good quality and has serious traction to being complete within 12 months from this post?

There are several working solutions to this problem already, all reasonably close to what you might want.

TeamSpeak seems popular; Discord would work; there's Mumble, if you want something open source.

I think the problem is a social one more than a technical one - getting everyone to agree on a single communication channel for this stuff. I don't think writing yet another VoIP-ish solution for this would help.

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vatSys has an integrated solution (which uses a mumble server) simulating proper hot and cold coordination lines. That will continue until AFV is upgraded. 

Jake

Developer - vatSys

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8 hours ago, Tobias Dammers said:

There are several working solutions to this problem already, all reasonably close to what you might want.

TeamSpeak seems popular; Discord would work; there's Mumble, if you want something open source.

I think the problem is a social one more than a technical one - getting everyone to agree on a single communication channel for this stuff. I don't think writing yet another VoIP-ish solution for this would help.

The primary issue I have with TS and Discord is that you need access permissions to be on those servers, and, well, the fact that you have to have both programs running if you have adjacent facilities using both. Now I'm hearing about Mumble for the first time which means downloading, installing, creating an account, and now running Mumble if a facility decides they want to use that.

I think the ideal solution involves integrating landline capability in AFV so that we have options as to how to route our landlines and radios. For example, if someone overrides me, my A/G comms get routed into my loudspeakers. I'd love to have the shoutline capability for adjacent centers so when ZMP calls me, I first hear them on my loudspeaker until I pick up my end of the line, which would, again, automatically re-route my A/G comms over the speaker so that I can still keep an ear out for aircraft checking on, but I can also actually understand what the controller is saying. Seeing as how the lead developer for AFV seems to have resigned, I'm not sure if that's ever going to happen.

In the meantime, I think a VoIP program is precisely what we could use right now. I think it would be useful if there was some kind of AFV-esque database that would populate the interface with the appropriate landline buttons based on the callsign the controller logs in with. Shoot, I wish I knew something about programming so I could help build such a program. Kyle, I fully support any effort you are willing to make on this program.

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Posted (edited)

Current controller client land line systems work, the problem is the user not setting up port forwarding. I had some one flat out refuse to believe me that the system still worked after AFV was introduced, till I proved them wrong by calling them and having a conversation over land line via Euroscope. Not sure where the belife came from that AFV or the old voice system had anything to do with ground to ground communications.

Before moving to Jake's client, I would always call people over landline for coord, and often the response from the other person was, "oh I didn't know this worked"

 

Edited by Kirk Christie

Kirk Christie - VATPAC C3

VATPAC Undercover ATC Agent

Worldflight Perth 737-800 Crew Member

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11 minutes ago, Kirk Christie said:

Not sure where the belife came from that AFV or the old voice system had anything to do with ground to ground communications.

Landlines use the old voice system (VVL, VATSIM Voice Library) ... they just don't use a voice server. They are peer-to-peer connections, hence the port forwarding requirement.

Developer: vPilot, VRC, vSTARS, vERAM, VAT-Spy

Senior Controller, Boston Virtual ARTCC

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Posted (edited)
15 hours ago, Chriss Klosowski said:

I really like the Euroscope VCCS system however if I remember correctly all your controllers needs to be on the same server for it to work. This is especially useful between ACC control but many vACCs used different servers. Is there a possibility of having a central server for all? Or is there a central new VCCS system in the works?

Them all being on the same server is not required. IIRC the receiving party's server is used.

Edited by Lars Bergmann
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I would be happy to help in developing a landline system. I like the look of the euroscope VSCS and I like the ease of the VatSys mumble backend. I would hate to create another application, as is common in VATSIM development. I just find being in a discord call with ten people wildly distracting, which is common in the U.S. today. I would love an update from the AFV devs, but that won't stop us from developing another application.

I will get the ball rolling and mock up some ideas for a UI.

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  • 1 month later...

I know this is an old post but I'd like give you one of my old suggestions.

I hate coordiantion on Discord as you will also hear coordination not meant for you, distracting other controllers. Furthermore, you have to choose who you want to give priority. Are you going to set Discord loudly, so if pilots talk you can dont hear them, or are you going to put Discord at a low volume so you can hear your fellow controllers at all times? 

I've suggested and looked for possibilities before where during a coordination call the audio is split between the left and right channel. E.g.: When coordianting you have the landline in your right ear and AFV in the left. When the landline is not in use you hear pilots as normal via both channels.

 

(No, this is not possible with voice meeter as voicemeeter is static, not dynamically changing)

Edited by Matisse VanWezer 1385143
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5 hours ago, Matisse VanWezer 1385143 said:

I know this is an old post but I'd like give you one of my old suggestions.

I hate coordiantion on Discord as you will also hear coordination not meant for you, distracting other controllers. Furthermore, you have to choose who you want to give priority. Are you going to set Discord loudly, so if pilots talk you can dont hear them, or are you going to put Discord at a low volume so you can hear your fellow controllers at all times? 

I've suggested and looked for possibilities before where during a coordination call the audio is split between the left and right channel. E.g.: When coordianting you have the landline in your right ear and AFV in the left. When the landline is not in use you hear pilots as normal via both channels.

 

(No, this is not possible with voice meeter as voicemeeter is static, not dynamically changing)

I’m not sure where the suggestion is in your post.

Kyle Sanders
VATUSA
ZLC ARTCC

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10 hours ago, Kyle Sanders said:

I’m not sure where the suggestion is in your post.

The suggestion is dynamically splitting audio of different applications (here: Landline & AFV) into different channels (left-right ear). If no coordination is taking place you'd hear the AFV as you do now: through both ears. During coordination the audio gets split. You hear the landline only through your left ear and the AFV only through the right ear.

This makes it easier to:

  • Focus on just one speaker, ignoring the other (either controller or pilot). I.e. Ignore a pilot calling in when you are coordinating.
  • You can quickly switch focus between two speakers. I.e. When the other controller isn't replying promptly or he is hesitating, you can still work your traffic. 
  • It makes it easier to listen to both speakers at the same time. I.e. Multitasking, having heard both the pilot and the other controller.

I hope this clears thing up!

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It does! Something like this is already part of the core development plan however it will be a speaker vs headset thing such as they do RW.

In RW (US CTR at least) when coordination is taking place, the other ATC is in your ear and you have the option with a click of a button to route the audio of the pilots to your little sector speaker. That is what we are doing right now.

If we find an easy way to split the different audio to L/R ear, we will likely do that as well.

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Kyle Sanders
VATUSA
ZLC ARTCC

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  • 2 months later...

Personally, I really am unhappy that VATSIM didn't consider a landline system integrated into AFV or have Ross Carlson if he is still around update the landline system to be updated with the current AFV systems. Coordination in a Teamspeak/Discord is difficult as you may have different channels for different positions, but you have to tab off your screen to change a channel and talk to the sector you coordinate with. Another issue mentioned above is being distracted by either side talking or other coordination calls between two other sectors/towers. The final issue is sometimes not everyone goes inside the discord channels if it isn't required and you have to coordinate via text. A system where controllers network-wide would use for coordination by calling each other on a landline would be awesome and improve coordination by making it more realistic.

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The AFV team, from my understanding, was somewhat separate from VATSIM. So they built it without regard to a landline communication system, which is understandable.

However, they have had some development with a v2 for AFV that allows landline comms. The issue is that they aren’t providing much public information on it and don’t seem to respond to offers of assistance.

Ross is still very much around. He is in the process of building a new client that merges VRC, vSTARS, and vERAM all into one. He wants to first get that taken care of with no development time spent on creating NEW features and I respect that.

Hence: Nik and my desire to start work on a standalone program to serve as a landline system that hopefully will catch on.

Edited by Kyle Sanders

Kyle Sanders
VATUSA
ZLC ARTCC

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2 hours ago, Kyle Sanders said:

The AFV team, from my understanding, was somewhat separate from VATSIM. So they built it without regard to a landline communication system, which is understandable.

However, they have had some development with a v2 for AFV that allows landline comms. The issue is that they aren’t providing much public information on it and don’t seem to respond to offers of assistance.

Ross is still very much around. He is in the process of building a new client that merges VRC, vSTARS, and vERAM all into one. He wants to first get that taken care of with no development time spent on creating NEW features and I respect that.

Hence: Nik and my desire to start work on a standalone program to serve as a landline system that hopefully will catch on.

How is the development going?

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