QVA's History

It was the year 1998. Microsoft FS98 had just been released, and you could still fly between the twin towers of New York's World Trade Centre in the sim. The web was experiencing rapid growth in all areas, connecting people from all corners of the world. Flight simmers flocked together to share ideas and designs, and the concept of the Virtual Airline was born...
Early VAs were maintained entirely by hand. You joined a VA by sending an email to the manager, who would add your name to the roster and give you a pilot number. You then picked a flight from a list of (usually) 20 to 30 available flights, and were given 1 week to fly and report it. You logged off your 28.8k dial-up connection, then fired up FS98, and flew the flight from start to end, COMPLETELY ALONE and with no AI traffic..
There were no human voices in the sim, let alone online ATC. By the following weekend you had to submit your flight times to the manager, again by email. He would then update the hours on the roster by hand, assuming he hadn't gone away for the weekend.
So much of that hard work was repetitive and mundane; there HAD to be a better way of doing things. "CGI scripts were the in-thing at that time. Every fashionable website had to have a CGI script or ten, and the most desired feature was the message board, or 'forum' as we call it these days. We got hold of a Perl script and changed it for QVA's first forum. It was called the "Red Roo Bar", "QVA Lounge", and "QVA Club" in various times.The first version was called "APLS", Automated Pilot Logging System, and it appeared in mid 1998. It updated the pilot roster with the weekly flight hours from each pilot. I'm not sure if it was a hit at that time, but we hyped it as part of our strategy to market QVA to the masses :-)"
"VAs were springing up everywhere. Every week a new VA was born, and most lasted at most 2 weeks before dying. There were dozens of VAs calling themselves "Qantas VA" (even now) and we HAD to be different to survive the competition. There was also the constant threat of the REAL Qantas Airways Limited shutting us down for copyright infringements. At one time in 1998 QVA changed its name to "Quality VA" and all mention of the taboo "Q" word was erased from the site.
We continued work on APLS, fixing bugs and adding features. By 1999 APLS had become APDLS, Automated Pilot Dispatch and Logging System. We expanded the scripts to feature flight bidding and assignment. The number of flights available for QVA pilots to fly increased a thousand-fold after we converted the real Qantas flight schedule ("Qantim" flight planner) and added all airports that Qantas and subsidiaries fly to. QVA boasted of being the only VA that had an automated system managing pilots and flights. Our web pages might not have looked pretty, but no one could match our content and service! We take much pride in the fact that the real Qantas, although watching our every move, never did threaten closure. QVA in March 2000 had reverted to usage of the taboo "Q" word: " "In late 2000, QVA moved to a new server at http://eborag.ch which we shared with Swissair VA, run by Reto Borer . In return for his generosity, we adapted the APDLS scripts for Swissair VA's use. No other VA has deployed APDLS since".
Well finally in 2014 we decided to retire :The Old Bird" in its current "APDLS" form and upgraded to the modern day PHPVMS System that most Virtual Airlines use today.