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Scawen
Developer
Thanks for the report of this annoying bug. I have fixed this in my version so it will be fixed in any future update. I don't know when that will be.

Simple reproduce:

- Press T
- Click down arrow to open characters
- Select a different language code page (e.g. Japanese)
- You do not see the Japanese code page
- You see the code page for the last character in your line of text
Scawen
Developer
Obviously I'm not just sitting here waiting for Eric to finish the tracks. I'm working very hard every day on all the things that need to be done, and I believe that once a month I might be able to think of one or two interesting things to say, maybe something I thought of or something I've been working on. Smile

I'm just saying, although each progress report will be mainly some pictures of a track, I should hope to add a few words about something else, occasionally. Smile
Scawen
Developer
Quote from RC-Maus :Does this mean arround x-mas we have the update? Big grin
(new pictures shown allready BL AS AU WE RO)

SO next FE SO and maybe suprice Omg omg omg

No, the existing shots of AS, AU, WE and RO don't count.

This process is going to be a while yet.
Scawen
Developer
For a while, we would like to release a few more pictures each month.

It may be that we show one track in each monthly report.

And sometimes a little more information to go with the pictures.
Scawen
Developer
That is no problem and it is normal that message may come up sometimes.

More info for interest:

Sometimes a guest's ephemeral port for the UDP packets can change.

This port, originally assigned by the operating system, is normally used by LFS as part of the identification of which guest a UDP position packet comes from. But the port is ephemeral and the operating system (or is it the router - not going to think too hard about this) can change it at any time. If it does change, then LFS does a more thorough check to figure out which guest the packet came from and stores the new ephemeral port.
Scawen
Developer
Progress report from 26th August:
https://www.lfs.net/report-aug2018-bl
Scawen
Developer
Quote from Chunkiegg :Scawen, you mentioned that Eric has been doing some rebuilding parts of the tracks due to changing how the worlds are lit/shaders, when Eric's work load lightens up (if it ever does), would it be possible to get a run down of what and why the new bits have been rebuilt?

When we load an old track into the new lighting system, it does an auto adjustment for the light colour to try and look as close as possible to how it did before, though it does look a bit different because of the gamma corrected lighting. In most cases that is a better look, even without any manual adjustments.

But the new lighting system cannot be released with tracks in that condition, mainly because the shadows don't work properly with all the buildings. Some of them were built long ago when there was no free view mode and they would only be seen from track level. In those days we saved polygons and a bit of work by not always bothering with a roof. Now it turns out that doesn't work with the shadow system. The shadows are only cast from surfaces that are seen from the sun's direction. So every object needs a top surface. For example South City looks good with the shadows, but there are many places where the shadow is missing or there are various shards of shadows around.

So that means every track must be visited to do some fixes. The next thing is that we have shine on roads on some tracks now, and it would be quite inconsistent if there isn't any shine effect on road surfaces at another track, so it always makes sense for Eric to go and sort that out. But he is not comfortable with just updating a few textures here and there on an old track. He wants to do a better job, updating barriers and walls to have the right shine effect too. Then he sees old construction methods and things he wants to do a better way. Also he sees corners that need some adjustment, maybe they were too wide or there isn't enough detail or it's a corner that has caused problems while racing over the years. Sometimes things can be improved a bit for the open configuration support as most tracks were built before we had that system. All these things add up so he ends up doing at least several weeks on each track.
Scawen
Developer
I think most of the questions in the thread have been answered by other readers.

Quote from nacim :So Scawen, your technical description is still a bit vague for me.. you used a specular workflow right ? I can't see any metallic surface on theses screenshots, does Eric has a control on the specular color per pixel ? Uhmm

Usually the specular reflections are not coloured. So I suppose that is a specular workflow though I'm not really sure about the terminology. Currently we do not have control of specular colour per pixel. A specular colour can be set for a whole surface and that can be used for a metallic effect (or another kind of coloured reflection, for example a window covered with a film of coloured transparent plastic).

Quote from nacim :And looking at the road, I don't really know if your specular factor is normalized depending on the specular power, or if it's up to Eric to tweak it. I suggest you check this out if you haven't seen it already: https://seblagarde.wordpress.com/2011/08/17/hello-world/ Smile

In all cases, I know I have to look at your BRDF once the update is released Big grin

I'm not really sure what a specular factor or a specular power is, but the BRDF naturally reduces the brightness of the shine and increases the spread if the roughness is increased.

Our shaders are using an approximation to a Cook Torrance BRDF with optimisations discussed by various authors. After quite a bit of experimentation we came to one that Eric was happy with and felt he had enough control over to get most of the effects he needed.

Quote from nacim :Oh and I remember you talked about exponential fog one day, is implemented or still on your backlog ? Smile

I was forced to implement fog in the shaders when I needed to move to shader model 3 and it doesn't do fog otherwise. So I went for exponential fog. It's nice because it allows fog to have some effect in the middle distance without reducing far distance pixels to 100% fog colour.


Quote from MicroSpecV :Also, for the layouts created in Aston sky/Autocross here
https://www.lfs.net/forum/thread/90485-Nova%27s-really-good-circuit-layouts ,
Will I be able to transfer the track file and placement direct into the new environment? Or will it be another Blackwood situation where the coords will be different?

The layouts at Autocross should be compatible, though some of the areas are a few metres wider. So some changes at the edges may be needed.

At Aston there are quite a few adjustments, various corners have been improved, tightened up a bit in some cases, but most things are pretty much in the same place so I believe most layouts should work with a few adjustments.

I think I should be able to make old Aston layouts load with the extra 2 metres added automatically.
Scawen
Developer
Would that problem be solved if one of the 3d kerb objects (e.g. from Blackwood) was included as a layout object?

EDIT: I guess not - looking at your pictures, there are a lot of reasons to put concrete objects slightly underground.

E.g. https://www.lfs.net/attachment/165190
Last edited by Scawen, .
Scawen
Developer
Nice job with the comparisons. Smile

Yes, Aston has been raised to fix the area that was below sea level. I think it is 2 metres, so to make accurate comparison shots you can subtract 131072 from the Z coordinate (3rd number) in the /cp line.
Graphics Progress Report: Blackwood
Scawen
Developer
Hello Racers,

We have been working on graphics most of the time since early 2017 and we can now show you some of the results. You will instantly notice the the new detailed shadows and shine on the road surfaces. Looking around, you will start to see that many more surfaces have some sort of shine level.

In this update we will show you some pictures of Blackwood. As a track that was recently updated, it didn't need many changes other than new textures and settings for the new lighting system. Some other tracks have had more extensive updates and we plan to show you some of those in a few weeks.

Read the whole report and see more screenshots on the Graphics Progress Report: Blackwood page.

- LFS Developers
Scawen
Developer
I can see the same messages, from two IP addresses.

179.60.146.20
78.128.112.22 (as mentioned above)

I don't know what it is or what someone is trying to do. It doesn't seem to be the size of a known packet for initial connection attempts. I don't feel it's much to worry about at this point.
Scawen
Developer
Thanks, good to know they are supporting the genuine version.

I've added the site to the links page. https://www.lfs.net/links

The Chinese characters did not appear correctly so I've asked Victor about that and left it as SRFC for now.
Scawen
Developer
For me, having a good life and plenty of free time to do the things I like is far more important than being rich. If being rich was a high priority there are many other jobs I could have done, and probably would have had to work 9 to 10 hours a day and only have a few holidays a year. But what's the point in that? So I could wear a fancy watch or clothes with logos on them so other people would be impressed? I don't get it. Life has to be about doing the things you like to do, not wasting money on expensive crap to show off to other fools.
Scawen
Developer
Physics, mechanics, linear algebra, calculus, C/C++, D3D or similar, vehicle dynamics, tyre physics.
Scawen
Developer
Quote from Evolution_R :..."LFS "runs" at 100 Hz, so you're going to end up with a little stuttering if your display is locked at 60 Hz."
...
So my question is this going to be improved somehow with the new graphics / physics update? Thanks!

It's a good question. If I can get the graphics ready to a condition that is suitable for this release and could then get back on the physics so that is suitable in time for Eric to have finished the tracks, then this opens the possibility of working on separate physics and graphics threads. That would be a great help and the plan would be to combine this with some means of producing visual frames at the correct visual frequency for the monitor. That would either be by using a high frequency physics update that can be interrupted at any point for a graphical frame, or by using a lower frequency physics update that can be interpolated to produce graphical frames.

Obviously the graphics needs to be done then that would make it releasable, even with the current physics and it's possible this may happen. But I really hope I can sort out the new physics so we can move on.
Scawen
Developer
Texture resolution is a good option. Deactivating shadows is also one but that is quite unsatisfactory as it would look worse than the old LFS. Maybe instead there could be options to reduce the range of the shadows or switch to a shadow method that accesses less shadow texture memory. There could be an option to avoid the specular highlights or skip the exponential fog. How much any of these options would help I really don't know as I have not got to that stage. But I think there are ways to improve frame rate without making things look too bad.

It may be possible for it to run on a really old graphics card that does not support shader model 3 but in that case I think it really would have the shadows switched off and no specular highlights.

NOTE: This option may or may not be a possibility and none of these are promised!
Scawen
Developer
Yes a more modern graphics card will help. The shadow maps and high resolution textures do make the card work harder. But I don't suggest buying one now as it is still quite a long time until release. We cannot give any estimate. I hope to be able to add graphics options to make it run better on older cards but maybe we can see about that when it gets to test patch stage.

NOTE: I'm just thinking out loud, these thoughts are how I imagine things going, not how it will actually happen, and they are not promises.
Scawen
Developer
Hi, I'm sorry but Arabic is not possible yet. It's mainly because of the right-to-left complication which needs special coding.

I know Arabic would be popular and I would like to support it eventually. But for now we need to get the new graphics and tyre physics finished.
Scawen
Developer
Which folder did you install in? I think problems may occur if you install in program files folder.

Best to use the default C:\LFS or C:\GAMES\LFS or something like that, or Windows may do funny things with file access.
Scawen
Developer
Our plan is to do a small presentation in August. We want to write a little about the shadows and lighting and do some high resolution shots to illustrate.

Anyway, to thank you for being so patient, here's another medium resolution Westhill shot from a different angle in that same weather.

Again 1600x900 at this camera position:
/cp -8104131 21192096 392929 3623 300 0.0 40.0
Scawen
Developer
That corner now has 3D kerbs.

Using this camera position: /cp -3052607 -1380642 67659 -21680 548 0.0 40.0

Attached screenshot at resolution 1600x900.
Scawen
Developer
Quote from pasibrzuch :Do you suspect a negative feedback because of ugly screenshots of preview of a beta test patch?

Yes!

We want to show some nice pictures. We noticed some flaws and thought I might as well work on them. It's a way to get things done. It's part of the development process, in just the same was that it was a good thing that Eric took a few days off the track he is currently on, to go over the already updated tracks to fix a few things.

It's a good thing that we are brushing up our work for the screenshots, not a bad thing!
Scawen
Developer
I think it was work if you set your computer correctly. There is a system setting like "Language for non-Unicode programs" or similar. You can search in google for that along with your version of Windows and you should be able to set it to Japanese in control panel, then I think you will be able to paste Japanese text into LFS. I think you need to set the LFS input to Japanese at the same time, using the standard Windows shortcuts.
Scawen
Developer
Quote from THE WIZARD DK :... but car models ? wouldnt they have to be uhm.... dare i say it... upgraded aswell then ? (oops hit a nail) Smile

Cars could do with an update. Some of the cars are very old indeed. But they aren't causing any problems with shadows so there is no need for car updates to delay the release of the new graphics.
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