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Greetings, I’d like to let everyone know that VR-Vantage 1.3 has been in testing for the last month or so. New versions of VR-Vantage IG, our desktop image generator, VR-Vantage Stealth, our battlefield visualization tool, and VR-Vantage XR, our exaggerated reality common operating picture tool will be ready at the end of April.

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With the recent release of version 5.0, the Logger became the third of our products to support HLA Evolved, joining the RTI and VR-Link. The HLA Evolved Logger supports all the functionality we already provide in 1.3 and 1516, but it also makes use of one of the key new features of HLA Evolved: FOM modules.
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It has been some time since the MAK PVD has been updated but I’m pleased to announce that the next generation Plan View Display will be available soon. Introducing VR-Vantage PVD! This real-time interactive tactical map application will increase your situational awareness of the virtual battlefield.

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VR-Forces 4.0 is getting close to release!  As many of you are aware, we’ve been working hard over the past year to give VR-Forces a whole new GUI based on MAK’s VR-Vantage visual product.  One of the key new capabilities of this GUI is the ability to work with many different views of the scenario at the same time. 

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While we don’t have firm dates picked for supporting Windows MSVC10 with all MAK products we are planning to roll out support for this new compiler across our product line throughout the year. Today I wanted to provide some details about our thinking, as well as describe how we want to handle the notorious issue regarding SCL and HID compiler flags 

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Exclusive | |

I recently had need to compare to OMT files to see what would be required for bridging them using VR-Exchange.  Rather than doing it by hand, which would have most likely been a large waste of time and risked missing something important, I spent a few hours writing a tool that would compare two OMT files for me.

One of the issues of comparing OMT files is that a simple text based diff won''t give you the results you want because there is a lot of semantic information that needs to be compared.

The customer gave me two OMT files and said that they were both RPR FOM based with some extensions. That should simply work with VR-Exchange out of the box. However, using the OMTDiff tool we found that there were several enumerations with the same name, but with different values.  Using this information I was able to quickly create a modified HLA broker for VR-Exchange that intercepts these enumeration values and translates them properly.

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If you missed I/ITSEC this year in Orlando, then you missed some very impressive demonstrations presented by the experts at MÄK. Our booth was bigger than ever this year, allowing us to showcase both our COTS products and higher level solutions.

On the product front, we showcased VR-TheWorld a streaming terrain server for Modeling & Simulation.

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In Microsoft Visual Studio 2005 (VC8) and later, there are two special compiler flags developers need to be aware of:



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Also at IITSEC 2010, L-3 built a great solution using VR-Vantage XR and VR-Forces.
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At IITSEC 2010 in Orlando, RUAG showed their prototype next generation training platform: Virtual Arena II. The specific  instance below is used to train the driver and gunner of the VBCI, a French wheeled infantry fighting vehicle. VR-Vantage was used as the visual system for 11 channels in the system and VR-Forces was used as the threat generator!

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If you have upgraded to a new version of the MAK RTI, you have probably noticed that the RTI include paths have changed. This means that MS Visual Studio project files which worked with pre 4.0 RTI versions likely no longer work. This problem manifests itself when your previously compiling application can no longer find RTI.hh or some other standard RTI header file.

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Recently we have been seeing widespread Windows 7 adoption by our customers, we are internally moving to it too. However, we have noticed some very strange behavior on Windows 7 with some of our applications.

The most significant problem we have run into is extremely slow startup times for the MAK RTI. This problem is usually obvious; the RTI Assistant will take between 3 and 15 minutes to load.

While its loading you will just see a blank console window. HLA Federates may take an equally long time to load because they are waiting for the RTI.

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As many of you may have seen, we just released MAK RTI version 4.0.1. This release fixed two significant problems with MAK RTI version 4.0 on Linux. We recommend all customers who are using version 4.0 move quickly to version 4.0.1 to prevent additional problems. Today I wanted to take a moment and explain in more detail the nature of the problems.

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The latest snapshot of VR-Vantage demonstrates visualization of aggregates. View aggregates as their bounding volumes (along with their MilStd symbol) or as individual units.

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MÄK Technologies awarded contract by Vega Group PLC

ST Electronics’ US simulation company, MÄK Technologies (MÄK) and Antycip Simulation have been awarded a contract by VEGA Group PLC to supply MÄK’s commercial-off-the-shelf toolkit VR-Forces to support the Watchkeeper UAV (Unmanned Air Vehicle) Programme for the UK Ministry of Defence. Under contract to Thales UK, VEGA will be responsible for managing the development and delivery of a training solution for both operator and maintenance crews for the Watchkeeper UAV system. Watchkeeper will provide the UK armed forces with an essential Intelligence, Surveillance, Target Acquisition and Reconnaissance capability, based on a tactical UAV system, and will be a key component of the UK’s drive for Network Enabled Capability.

VR-Forces is a robust and flexible Computer Generated Force (CGF), making it the choice for many large simulation and training programmes like Watchkeeper,” said Mr Marc Schlackman, Vice President of Marketing and Sales at MÄK Technologies. “MÄK is pleased to be chosen by VEGA to help meet the training needs of the Watchkeeper UAV system in the United Kingdom.


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Check out the video below of VT MAK’s latest product: VR-TheWorld Server! VR-TheWorld Server is a streaming terrain server for modeling and simulation.  It supports the TMS and WMS-C open standards and streams imagery and elevation to your simulation and visualization applications!  The easy to use web interface let’s up upload your own data and get it into your simulation in no time!

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The newest capability of VR-Vantage Stealth and VR-Vantage XR is the visualization of electromagnetic sensor volumes. We now can visually represent electromagnetic emission fields such as those generated by mine detectors, radar, and other devices. The electromagnetic field appears as a translucent volume emanating from the entity.

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I recently made a new VR-Vantage XR Video.  It quickly demonstrates the various modes the XR observer can be put in and highlights the areas where each mode is most useful. Feel free to show this video around or even reproduce the demo live using VR-Vantage XR!

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I am frequently asked the question“Should I upgrade my existing HLA Federate to HLA Evolved?” I confess, I cringe when I hear this, mostly because there is no clear answer and usually the inquisitor expects such. Anyone making the decision to upgrade the version of HLA they are using needs to answer a few questions first:

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Recently one of our customers contacted us for consulting on how to setup a large federation that would scale up to 1000 federates. Here is how we setup their federation for scaling to large numbers of federates.

Upon first arriving, we took a look at their Federation Object Model (FOM) to get an idea of what types of objects and interactions they were sending through the RTI and how much data was being used.

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