Scenery Display

I could have titled this section "DISPLAY SYSTEMS" but I wanted to differentiate it from systems used to display instruments and the like on the flight deck. Displaying the world outside your simulated vehicle has a big impact on the overall experience and it deserves no small effort in getting it right. It would be really neat if we could borrow a Star Trek holo-deck. The external world would be rendered in amazing, 3D detail. Heck, we could render the whole simulator. Well, the holo-deck is just one of many proscribed Federation technologies, and it is unlikely that we will be able to get our hands on one. Another approach is indicated.

Displaying realistic 3D images with our non-Federation technology might seem to require some sort of binocular display with a dual channel, high frame rate video source driving it. As it turns out the geometry of a simulator significantly relaxes the demands on displaying scenery. The pilot is inside the simulator while the outside environment is, well, outside. To understand what adds value and what doesn't when we try to simulate 3D in the exterior view, let's take a look at how people perceive depth information.