This deserves a thread with a title all it's own; as I mentioned in another thread about "sequestration" a few weeks ago, The National Museum of The United States Air Force in Dayton, Ohio has been hampered by the politicians "sequestration"; However, one of the best projects they have ever embarked on since they first opened years ago, is still a no. 1 priority and is getting better by the day.
The U.S.A.F. Museum has, IMHO, the best, and probably the largest collection of retired war birds of any museum there is, anyplace. I have been there countless times, and I have spent a lot of time speaking with the people who run it and many of the people who work diligently to prepare all of the airplanes for exhibit. I can tell you this; since the day the the Museum first opened, the staff has always been keenly aware of the fact that the only "experience" lacking to the many visitors of the Museum has always been the inability to look inside the airplanes, especially the cockpits of all the airplanes. EVERYONE always wants to see what "all that stuff" the pilots use to fly the planes "looks like". Obviously, it's impossible to physically get visitors into airplanes; or it always has been, until fairly recently.
Now, thanks to the many advances in video technology, it's possible to not only to "visit" the cockpits of airplanes, now you don't even have to leave the comfort of you home to do it. I'm sure everyone reading this who has ever attended an air show, has also probably waited in a long line, often in the hot sun, to be able to walk up some steps on a portable ramp, and look down into the cockpit of a fighter plane, or even do a "walk through" of a bigger plane, like maybe a C-17 or a C-130. But that experience, nice as it was, has always been very brief, and you have ALWAYS had a long line behind you, wanting you to "hurry up" ! ( Been there, did that many times ) But now you don't have to climb steps, wait in line, and you can "look" as long as you like! As a matter of fact, I should probably warn you.......if you find airplanes as interesting as I do.........don't take the "virtual tour" of any of these planes they already have rigged up with video unless you have a LOT of free time available; ( I didn't even make it to bed last night.....I was still "inside" the cockpit of the B1B Bomber when my wife woke up this morning. )
The only thing I can think of that is similar to this "virtual videp tour" of the crew stations of a whole bunch of planes, is "Google Earth"; it seems to work about the same way; moving to mouse allows you to "observe" in a 360 degree circle, up or down, and moving the scroll-wheel allows zooming in and out; it's absolutely awesome; but don't take my word for it; click on the link ( that I thought to copy this time ) and see for yourself ! And let us all know what you think.....
[Edited 2013-04-05 16:40:08]