Hackathon Proposal:POH Checklists

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Revision as of 18:33, 8 October 2020 by Hooray (talk | contribs) (this is a long-standing idea: https://forum.flightgear.org/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=37992&p=373519&#p373511)
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This is an example Hackathon idea for the Virtual FSWeekend Hackathon 2020.

Title: POH Checklists

FG1000 Checklist MFD page.png
Sponsors: Stuart
Interested Parties: none
Status: n/a
Summary: n/a
Background: Stuart would like to improve how checklists are displayed within the simulator.

The PUI checklist dialog has a bug where selecting a new group doesn't update the checklist selection combo-box. Stuart has tried various tricks to update it, but thinks it's an underlying issue with PUI itself. [1]

Trying to do something more complicated with Nasal and PUI is a real pain, and Stuart doesn't think it's worth the effort. One thought he had a while back was it would be nice to replace the checklist function with some Canvas window that looked a bit more like a traditional paper checklist.[2]

Hopefully as we move to using Canvas in the future we'll be able to improve the checklist display to include a set of dots linking the items.[3]

Stuart would be very happy to help anyone who is interested in creating either a generic MFD checklist feature, or to replace the PUI version with a better canvas implementation. [4]So if someone is looking for a Hackathon idea - using QML or Canvas to render checklists so that they look more like a traditional checklist in a POH would be quite a neat little project. [5]

Note that checklists are primarily PropertyList/XML encoded, so can be easily turned into a Canvas dialog - it would be pretty straightforward to do so using what we have already, unless people care enough to provide dedicated/custom widgets for a certain look and feel. And in fact, given the groundwork by rleibner, Thorsten and jsb, there's now quite a bit of library code to draw widgets procedurally.

There probably isn't anything missing to provide a Canvas front-end for checklists, as per Stuart's original idea.

And in fact, t seems that Stuart has meanwhile actually created a Canvas-front-end as part of his FG1000 work - so for someone familiar with Nasal and Canvas, it should be pretty straightforward to extract that code, generalize it and turn it into a generic checklist widget.

So if there are folks who are interested in seeing a non PUI front-end (without depending on an optional dependency like Qt5/QML), their best bet would indeed be to look at the FG1000 repo and reuse Stuart's checklist implementation there.

the checklist handling stuff from the FG1000 is to be found here:

Looking at the code, anyone wanting to just use Stuart's code "as is" would be best off by instantiating a fresh MFDDisplay object and simply adding Stuart's ChecklistPage to that (otherwise empty) MFD - the MFD would then merely act as the boilerplate, but could trivially be shown inside a Canvas GUI dialog. That way, even aircraft without an MFD could use Stuart's checklist work to render a Canvas-based checklist.

To learn more about Richard's MFD framework (which is what Stuart's FG1000 is using under the hood), see: Canvas_MFD_Framework [6]

Details: n/a
Required skills: Nasal, Canvas
Learning Opportunities: * Aircraft checklists