Living in the hull of a tired airliner must have its limitations and restrictions and the desitre for a wide-body upgrade is wholly understandable. I admire Bruce's determination not to compromise but wonder what his nearest and dearest thinks about the family home. I can think of a few who might baulk at the thought let alone the reality. Mind you, I could be sold on the bigger version, Perhaps a panaoramic wide format and shaped window in the side of the feuselage to provide the vista to go with the G&T?
Pop across to the Mail Online and have a better look at one man's vision of a better life and see if you agree.
"We would want them to be recovered and be re-used in an environmentally sustainable fashion.'
Campbell was in his early 20s when he paid around $23,000 for the 10 acres on which his plane rests. His original plan was to make a home from freight vans, but then he decided a plane would be better. A van still sits nearby, covered in growth.
He purchased the 727 after hearing about a Mississippi hairdresser who had done it.
Now, about $220,000, many years of work and several hard-learned lessons later, Campbell is ready to do it all over again, this time with a Boeing 747 he hopes to buy and move to Japan, where he also spends half of the year.
Campbell is working to restore some of the plane's original features, from the cockpit to flight stairs, a working lavatory, LED lighting and some of the seats.
A post devoted to the Sopwith Strutter, the first combat mount of Major Arthur Keen, O.C. 40 Squadron (SE5a), died 2 Sept 1918. The post is a mirror of that found on our 'Aviator in the Attic' website that chronicles the writing of an account of this distinguished aviator's service within the RFC/RAF, 1915-1918. Arthur's personal archive was discovered in a relative's attic, it contained over 200 letters, photographs, awards and decorations. He died aged 23 after a flying accident.Read More
This is another fascinating high-tech project that's a little off the wall. I love it for its far-sighted participants and backers. The devotion and focus that turns these ideas into reality is really inspiring.Read More
Proposal: Today’s Science Fiction is tomorrows reality - imagination drives innovation and eventually, design and production.
Our Science Fiction
We reduce the crew compliment on the airliner flight decks to one, turn the pilot into more of a systems manager than he/she is today by upgrading autopilot and aircraft systems beyond their current capabilities. The widespread introduction of Artificial Intelligence (AI) within advanced systems should enable this to be done safely. The goal being to reduce the cost of the second/third/fourth pilots currently required for long/ultra long-haul operations. Start with military aircraft and use the proven route of technology transfer from military to civil applications.
For a decade now something approaching the concept above has been debated within the airline world, the difference being that moves to make the changes would be taken before systems like those being suggested below are introduced in the coming decades. The idea that a single pilot might occupy the modern flight deck during the low workload portions of a flight is alive - now. And why not?
At first sight the concept sounds plausible enough; ensure that the only pilot at the controls managing the flight remains awake, give him/her a pee-tube to answer the call of nature. We might need to make the seats a little more, or even less comfortable, provide a G-Suit- like system to flex the lower blood vessels to prevent inadvertent heart problems of course. Then there is psychological welfare, how would it be for our pilot sitting there for 5–6 hours with just the company of a ‘pilot arousal monitor’? This isn’t what DARPA is working on, they are thinking in terms of shorter duration flights with a really heavy workload. But a transferrable unit dropped into multiple aircraft types? Interesting, so the aircraft itself isn’t adapted… **it remains the type we know and love like say, a C17 or an A330? **
Aircrew Labor In-Cockpit Automation System envisions a tailorable, drop‐in, removable kit that would enable the addition of high levels of automation into existing aircraft to enable operation with reduced onboard crew. The program intends to leverage the considerable advances that have been made in aircraft automation systems over the past 50 years, as well as the advances made in remotely piloted aircraft automation, to help reduce pilot workload, augment mission performance and improve aircraft safety.
“Our goal is to design and develop a full-time automated assistant that could be rapidly adapted to help operate diverse aircraft through an easy-to-use operator interface,” said Daniel Patt, DARPA program manager. “These capabilities could help transform the role of pilot from a systems operator to a mission supervisor directing intermeshed, trusted, reliable systems at a high level.”
As an automation system, ALIAS would execute a planned mission from takeoff to landing, even in the face of contingency events such as aircraft system failures. ALIAS system attributes, such as persistent state monitoring and rapid procedure recall, would provide a potential means to further enhance flight safety. Easy-to-use touch and voice interfaces could enable supervisor-ALIAS interaction. ALIAS would also serve as a platform for enabling additional automation or autonomy capabilities tailored for specific missions.
3) Human-machine interfaces: A vision for ALIAS is that the human operator provides high‐level input consistent with replanning and mission‐level supervision and is not engaged in lower‐level flight maintenance tasks that demand constant vigilance.
Sooo, he/she isn’t flying the aircraft, maintaining situational awareness, monitoring the conduct of the flight or in fact - being a pilot at all? He is, with the aid of automation, doing everyone else’s job?
I can see that the military may have a lot to gain here, but building this in one hop may be a skip too far. Aviation has taught us that man is an appalling monitor, easily bored and just as easily distracted. He gets mission fixated and often finds it difficult, when under pressure, to assign correct priorities. Much of the training within the airline environment focuses on these areas to invest in the right outcomes when we face adversity. This should be an interesting project to watch and learn from.
And, ‘they gonna be saving money here’?
Anything ‘more biological’ would involve waking the other pilot who is resting before he relieves his colleague. ↩
Isn’t Phantom Eye exactly what you would love to see as a advanced technology testbed for light aircraft development? Hydrogen powered motors, ultra-light airframe component technologies, advanced data-linking etc.Read More
Excuse the dramatised title, but how many times have you run across useful content only to lose the link in your overladen bookmark archive? Give it a month or two and links can be broken, information lost in what feels like an unlimited expanse - an infinite landscape. Getting back to it costs time you might spend more usefully. Ok, we all have work-arounds, we get by, but we need order, dependability and a solid workflow to study effectively.
If you’ve tried active collaboration and benefited, you don’t need me to build a case for it. But every successful collaboration relies on communication, either face to face or through other tools.
Observing colleagues working from the flight deck jump-seat can be an excellent experience. You learn vicariously picking up tips from the smart operators: spotting holes you mark for avoidance. A little humility goes a long way during occupation of that privileged seat, you get to look through the eyes of others, see what they value and gain insight into how they think and work.
So how about a tool that enables you to see what your fellow collaborators believe is worthy of interest, ’get an insight into their thinking? Connections like these form great focus points for conversation later or perhaps lead thought in a particular direction. Misconceptions or misunderstanding are identified, argued through and corrected. The very stuff of the collaborative approach to learning — online or off. To reap these and other rewards while learning online we need a tool.
Enter DIIGO. Like Textexpander, Diigo needs careful inspection before you see its value. It helps you organise your research into contextual groupings, marks what you consider important and enables you to annotate/highlight material on websites that remain visible only to members of your DIIGO Group* - your fellow students. The wonderful thing about each annotation being that they are stored online for later access and can be individually tagged and even better, searched. Periodically (you chose the interval) an email generated by Diigo is circulated to every member of the Group with detail of all members notes and annotations. Each is linked - you can immediately return to it. If tags are allocated searching for related content becomes a very simple matter.
e.g. If you and I are working on a project and are on opposite sides of the world but within the same DIIGO group, we can follow each other’s activity, even get a daily email that summarises that activity and provides links that will take us to each others bookmarks and notations. And again, if you cross a website where I have highlighted a paragraph, provided you are logged into our DIIGO group you will see the highlight on your browser. Remember, our annotations and highlights work on any webpage - anywhere, forum, intranet or within other secure areas.
The power and utility of DIIGO must be experienced for its possibilities to be realised. Again, a measure of discipline and application within collaborative groups is required for individuals to see that participation is really worth the effort. We can all be a bit conservative in our habits - a little reluctant to change our workflows and tools? This one is worth the effort invested.
Collaboration is DIIGO’s forte but even if used as a purely personal tool, I have found it to be exceptionally useful. Try it?. Get creative, use it within your study group and find ways to leverage this amazing, FREE tool.
Browsers across the range have ‘Diigolets’ available to sit on your toolbar to smooth the process working with Diigo’s server technology.
Vicarious learning - that which occurs through observing the behaviour of others. ↩
Think carefully about these next few paragraphs, they will return huge benefits. ↩
Diigo annotations work on any web accessible page, even those within an intranet where you need to log-in through a server gateway. ↩
Satellite technology fascinates aviators, particularly those of us who voyage across Scheduled Navigation Areas . These include the happy hunting grounds of the Albatross, the great whales, nuclear submarines and ocean going sea and air traffic. It’s here that SATCOM and HF come into their own, just as they do in the isolated areas of the dark continent and siberian wastes. MH370 vanished into one sparking one of the great, if not the greatest of all aviation mysteries. All the more riveting because it happened in our time, and presumably might even happen again. Or will it?
Immarsat, one of the world’s major providers of satellite services has made a remarkable offer. They are proposing a Cloud-based Black Box. Aircraft will stream data-packets containing multiple parameters to satellite where it will be held in the cloud rather than encapsulated within an orange ‘Black Box’. This data will have multiple regular uses but perhaps its prime value is that in future, vital information will be available for virtually instant analysis rather than waiting for hundreds of millions of dollars to be spent sending down submarines to search/retrieve the same from the worlds most inaccessible places - the remote, deep oceans.
Doesn’t it make you wonder why innovations (the Cloud) now taken for granted almost everywhere don’t make their way more rapidly to where they can do some seriously good work? Well done Immarsat!
Scheduled Navigation Areas are large tracts of the planet’s surface where navigation, search and rescue and access present unique challenges to authorities. Flight within these regions for public transport purposes are subject to special rules and procedures. ↩
High Frequency (long range) radio. ↩
Tovey, A (2014) Immarsat offers free aircraft tracking, The Telegraph, 13 May, B5. ↩
In packets every 15 minutes. Location, heading, speed and altitude. Additionally aircraft status and systems data, cockpit events normally recorded to the ‘Black Box’. ↩
The Portable Document Format (PDF) is an open standard for electronic document exchange. When you convert documents, forms, graphics, and web pages to PDF, they look just like they would if printed. But unlike printed documents, PDF files can contain clickable links and buttons, form fields, video, and audio. When you share a PDF file, virtually anyone can read it using Adobe’s Reader or one of many others. Below are the three major uses of the format for pilots.
- Flight Crew Technical Manuals.
- All forms of training documentation, handouts, manual supplements etc.
- Every imaginable aspect of administration and communication.
The darned things arrive from everywhere - they are easy to make, distribute and refer to. If you don’t utilise careful regimes for control and administration you must prepare to be overwhelmed. You may have a better system for doing the above, if so, please share it with the ’hood through the commenting system.
Adobe, has a stack of deeper knowledge about these little suckers, but here are a few pointers to be going along with.
Multi-platform — You can view and interact with PDFs on virtually any platform, including Windows®, Mac OS, and mobile platforms including Android™ and iOS for iPhone and iPad.
Searchable — When you need to find a particular word or phrase in a PDF, it’s easy to search text and metadata, including scanned text that was converted using OCR technology.
Organisation, Searching, Referring & Bookmarking
Most airlines have either devised or contracted in services to collate and manage their manuals. Vistair’s Docunet™ is one such system. Document management is handled well. Presentation of the hosted PDFs seems to be designed primarily around information delivery. That said, iterations in normal app development cycles keep bringing forward innovations that deliver functionality improvements, it won’t be long before we can highlight, note and scrawl all over the pages.
Another niggle at the user end is born of the very nature of the e-manual. Even when using apps that enable you to express your innate artistic tendencies. Changes in manual content (from Flt Ops/Boeing/Airbus -many and often) trigger amendments which consign your work to the trash. Paper was much the same, our highlighter splashes and scribbles in the margins were lost when we amended (threw away the old) pages. A common workaround involves downloading your manuals as standalone PDFs and using other tools to display, search and annotate them for study. I also keep a ‘base study set’ of manuals to ‘revise the basics’ which tend to remain constant. The detail comes from reference materials hot off the press - the most recent copy of the manual concerned. Everything and Nothing changes eh?
If you have a photographic memory and OCD inspired habits that exert powerful influences over your computer housekeeping, ignore the next few paragraphs.
The rest of us need a repository where we can organise and search our documents, those I would classify as projects and reference materials, not necessarily study notes. There are Windows applications for achieving this, I use Devonthink Pro Office, for the following reasons;
- Keeps my related data focussed together in one location,
- Scans my PDFs (and any other document) on import to make them searchable,
- Devonthink has an IOS app for iPhone/iPad so is available cross-platform.
Whenever any document, graphic or other file is deposited within Devonthink, it is interrogated ’till it weeps - all information within the file is sucked into its ‘brain’ and referenced using AI. Searching using the integrated reader is lightning fast: alternatively, open your desired PDF/document using an app of choice then save it - it lives in Devonthink and your annotations remain in plain sight within the app.
This app does so much, you really need to listen to the organ grinder, not a simple user. An alternative for the Mac is Eaglefiler: it does something similar with a different look-and-feel.
Quickly laying your eyes across the information you require is paramount. We can either know where to look for a file and go to it, or we can search and have it appear in front of us along with many others then sort through them. Excuse the brevity here but battles over methodologies rage across Geekdom as to how this fundamental need is serviced, here is a sensible offering.
Speaking generally, we tend to lean towards one system or the other but Aleh’s reflection is backed by his wisdom and heavy academic use:
Try folders/directories for project files - go to a specific location for your work focus. Tags for reference files - drop everything into a huge tub and search. For files that are both, use both.
The Tag story doesn’t end here, there are different kinds of tags, Open Meta, or for Mac people, Mavericks tags. Here is Brett Terpstra’s sound experience based offering around tagging practice. Here some more from him discussing Mavericks and tagging..
Ever wanted to make a link in your notes that will take you directly to the PAGE within a specific PDF/Manual?
Try this: add this to the url of the pdf you are linking to - #page=your page number . The url below shows you the modification I made to the url to show you ‘page 5’. I believe this trick works on any PDF you can link to, though after experimentation, the success can be browser dependant.
http s://s3.amazonaws. com/ DTWebsiteSupport/download/devonthink/2.7.5/ DEVONthink%20Pro%20Office%20Manual.pdf#page=5 - [I have broken the link for clarity]
Now try this link, it should take you to Page 5 of the Devonthink Pro Office documentation PDF from the Devonthink website.
🚀 Why not create a Textexpander snippet so all you do is insert the page number?
Snippet content: #page=%|
Suggested Abbreviation: pdfpx
Bookmarking PDFs is a gold-star time saver. Adobe’s Acrobat or Preview (OSX) enable you to generate your own bookmarks that snap you back to useful positions within your document. This process has often been carried out by those who prepare the document original, but you can build your own unique set within any PDF that permits it (security settings).
The PDF is amazing, this short post can only scratch the surface. When used with the array of tools available it can be a very powerful tool in your arsenal, understanding it adds to its power.
Next: TEL4A–05 Navigating the Infinite Landscape - Webpages