Elevate Your Flight Sim Experience

Quick Access to Real-World Airport Data with AppleScript

Welcome, flight sim enthusiasts! If you’re a fan of immersive flying experiences in games like Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020 or X-Plane, you know how crucial accurate airport information can be to enhance your virtual flights. Today, I’m thrilled to share a simple yet effective AppleScript that can elevate your flight simulation experience. This script enables you to quickly pull up detailed airport information from FlightAware just by entering an ICAO airport code. Ideal for virtual pilots who want to plan realistic routes or explore new airports in their simulator, this easy-to-use tool seamlessly integrates real-world aviation data into your flight sim setup. Join me as we dive into how you can create this handy script on your Mac, blending the lines between simulation and reality for a more enriched flying experience.

-- Start of the script
tell application "System Events"
    -- Prompt the user to enter the airport code in ICAO format
    display dialog "Enter the Airport code in ICAO format (e.g., KLAX, KJFK):" default answer "" buttons {"Cancel", "OK"} default button "OK" with icon note
    -- Store the user input in a variable
    set airportCode to text returned of result
    -- Check if the user entered a code
    if airportCode is equal to "" then
        display dialog "No airport code was entered. Please try again." buttons {"OK"} default button "OK" with icon stop
    end if
end tell

-- Construct the URL using the provided airport code
set baseURL to "https://www.flightaware.com/resources/airport/"
set fullURL to baseURL & airportCode & "/IAP/all/pdf"

-- Open the URL in Google Chrome
tell application "Google Chrome"
    -- Check if Chrome is running, and start it if not
    if not (exists window 1) then reopen
    -- Open a new tab with the URL
    open location fullURL
end tell
-- End of the script

After copying the AppleScript above, open the Script Editor on your Mac, which you can find in the /Applications/Utilities folder. Paste the script into a new document. You can run the script directly from the Script Editor to test its functionality. Once you’re satisfied with how it works, you can easily convert it into a standalone application. To do this, go to the File menu in Script Editor and select ‘Save.’ In the dialog box that appears, choose a name for your application, and importantly, set the File Format to ‘Application.’ Save it to your desired location. Now, you have a fully functional app that you can launch with a click! This app will prompt you for an ICAO airport code and automatically open the corresponding FlightAware page in your browser. It’s a handy tool for flight sim enthusiasts, pilots, or anyone interested in aviation, and a great example of the practical uses of AppleScript on your Mac.

In conclusion, this simple yet powerful AppleScript is more than just a quick way to access airport codes and charts; it’s a bridge between the real world of aviation and the virtual skies of flight simulation games. By seamlessly integrating real-world airport data into your flight sim experience, you’re not only enhancing the realism of your virtual flights but also gaining valuable insights into the intricacies of airport layouts and operations. Whether you’re meticulously planning a virtual flight in Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020, exploring new destinations in X-Plane, or just curious about aviation, this tool brings a wealth of real-time information to your fingertips. It exemplifies how a small script can significantly enrich your gaming experience, making every takeoff and landing more authentic and informed.

Finally we’re starting to get settled in, here in Hampton Roads.  Yesterday our house hold goods finally arrived from Japan.  It’s funny how much stuff a family accumilates over a number of years.  We still have boxes of stuff we haven’t unpacked yet.  More clothes than I can count, and countless nick-nacks as well.  We only have one more shipment to arrive, and that is our Storage shipment, this is going to be like Christmas, because this is all the stuff that we haven’t seen since we left florida.  Included in shipment will be my badly missed tools, air compressor, and other manly stuff.

since it’s late, must go to bed…

Greetings fellow reader(s):

I hope all everyone has  had a wonderful Christmas, regardless of what religious background you claim.  I had a great Christmas with my Family this year.  Of course, any Christmas one spends with thier family would certainly be a great Christmas.  Eventhough this Christmas didn’t have the living room floor covered in presents like it did in past years.  The economy hits home here in Japan, perhaps not as hard as it has hit in the Untied States, but we certainly feel it as well.

Other than being with Family, another highlight would be the Wii the kids got for Christmas.  When the kids opened it, I couldn’t wait to play it.  Of course, I was the first one playing on it.

Yet another year has passed.  The Year 2009 will certainly be a memorable year for Americans and the world.  A new President who I hope restores the way the world views the Americans.  Someone who loves to travel the world, I don’t really want to be viewed as a “Bully,” which is how many countries of the world views us.  When I visit certain countries, I actually tell people I’m Canadian.

Enough for now, HAPPY NEW YEAR everyone!  Stay safe and take care of yourself and your Family.

This was the long awaited, camp and trail ride.  I was really looking forward to this.  I got a chance to hang out with some great people and do some offroading.  Although I was not driving a Jimny, I think my Toyota Hilux Surf (4Runner),  held up rather nicely.

Everyone lining up to “Head for the Mountains… ” 

Getting Ready to leave


 Jaymie & Omee (Spelling?)


Another Mountain Trail

another mountain trail


“Mountain Man…” going down GOOD HIGHWAY!

up in the air


Jaymie… ドキューン! 撃たれたー!  でもかわゆいから許してあげる!



For more pictures, check out my gallery @ http://www.strickstuff.com/photo/v/may08_camp and check out the videos of this trip @ http://www.strickstuff.com/jimnyclub.php 

Also check out Taguchi-san’s blog @ http://minkara.carview.co.jp/userid/366083/blog/ 

More later…


Since that I have been on night shift, I have been missing my Aikido Classes.  I feel bad, that is good training which is just as good for your mind and spirit.  I’m going to try to get back into going next month.  For some reason I feel guilty.  I could actually go atleast once a week.  Since I work weekend duty, I could go on the Wednesday class.  But the problem is, I would never get any time to spend with the kids.  Since I work nights (actually swings… we don’t have a nite shift), when I leave for work, the kids are not home from school yet, and when I get home the kids are already in bed.  In the morning, I’m sleeping while they are getting ready for school.  So I don’t even see the kids until Wednesdays, my days off are Wednesday and Thursday.  I need to get in the gym and practice my ukimi before I get back into the class.

Another weekend is upon us.  The year is creeping by.  Northern Japans short summer is in our rear view mirrors as the we pass the welcome sign for winter.  Icy temperatures are upon us as the lows are getting in the 30’s now.  I’m not sure how we’re going to have fun trick-er-treating this year if it’s this cold.  The kids will have to have jackets on covering up their costume.  But that’s ok… I’m sure the kids will have fun just the same.  We’re planning a cookout this halloween and are inviting some filipino friends from Hatch over.

I haven’t been writing in here as much as I want to lately.  My mind has been clouded with lots of stuff that’s going on in my life and with the Military.  I do not want to get into any detail until things come to a head.  So much is going on… the Military has changed alot, and I’m not convinced it has changed for the good.  Enough about that.  I’m supposed to be going out this weekend… but we’ll see how I feel.  I know since I have to be at work by 4 in the morning, I know I want to try to catch up on some sleep. 

That’s enough for now… I’m at work, and I need to open excel or something to make it look like I’m working on something important.   A putty window with nano and some colored code doesn’t look good when you’re a truck driver…

They say we learn something new everyday. I’m right at 32 years old (in a few weeks), and I have never — ever — had roller skate on. I have, however, tried ice skating before. Anyway… today I took the kids to Skate Night. My buddy Juan talked me into putting some skates on and giving it a shot. Neither of us could skate, so I reluctantly agreed and put some roller blades on. It took about 20 minutes to get from the counter to the place where you skate.  Once in the “skating cage” I kept falling and well… to make a long story short… I’m not a skater, so I’m not going to skate.  I did make several rounds before finally quitting.

But the kids had a blast!

Another Friday is here.  It seems like time just cruises along at turbo speeds.  It’s hard to believe that I have been living in Japan for 14 months now.  It seems like it was only last week I was at the Passenger terminal waiting on our bags to get unloaded from the plane.  A lot has happened within these 14 months.  I have traveled all over the Country, seen lots of stuff, made new friends, and most importantly explored a new culture – a culture rich in traditions and history.

Speaking of history.  Today is my oldest brother’s birthday.  He was killed in a car accident Christmas of 1997.  So today my thoughts are with him, and his family.  I was stationed in Korea at the time.  I remember my 1st Sergeant giving me the call.  I ended up not going home for the funeral.  Looking back, I probably should have went, but that was going to be several thousand dollars out of pocket.  The military don’t pay for your plane tickets if there’s a death in the Family.  But there is help available.  The Air Force Aid Society will lend you the money but I would have had to pay it back, and I didn’t want to do that.  I know it sounds bad, but that’s the decision I made.  Anyway, Happy Birthday Brother!

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