Holding Quiz

If you're reading this with Internet Explorer and it looks ugly on non-functional, try the more IE friendly version.

If you love the quiz and are sad that Java applets eventually died, you may be able to try the quiz using the CheerpJ Chrome plug-in. (It also claims to work for Microsoft Edge). There are some other instructions, too.

I don't run Chrome, but I did give it a try and I was able to use the basic quiz. I don't know anything about the folks who wrote the plugin or the code, so be careful. If you do try it and have success, let me know.

The applet below is a simple holding entry quiz. The heading indicator on the left indicates the aircraft's inbound course to the fix (a VOR in the clearance), and the right window gives a holding clearance. Hitting the Show Entry button will add the entry type to the text below the clearance, as well as the time since the applet was loaded or the last clearance was requested. After the entry is given, clicking the Next Hold button (which replaces the Show Entry button) will display a new clearance and heading and restart the timer.

Clicking the Show Diagram button exchanges the heading indicator for a simple diagram of the hold, showing the aircraft's course to the hold and the holding pattern's orientation. The exact heading is also given. Clicking that same button again (now labeled Show HI/Diagram Overlay) shows a visualization of the hold overlaid on the Heading indicator. Clicking Show Heading Indicator restores the HI. The overlaid hold mode was suggested by a fellow named Rocky who didn't include a last name.

By default the diagram is drawn with north toward the top of the page. If you unclick the checkbox at the bottom, the diagram will be drawn with the aircraft heading toward the top of the page. For those of you who mentally superimpose the holding pattern's shape on the DG, this may be more intuitive. This was suggested by Ruben Pelaez, and I was happy to oblidge. The North is up checkbox has no effect on the HI/Diagram overlay mode.

I use the code to idle away hours spent in meetings. Well, really to practice quickly and correctly interpreting hold entries using only the HI. Adding time pressure goes a small way toward replicating the pressure of an airplane appoaching the fix and an insistent flight instructor. (In fact adding the timer was his idea, which shows that he's insistent even when he's not around.) You're welcome to ignore the elapsed time indicator, of course.

You don't have Java enabled, or there was some problem loading the applet.

If you don't see the applet above this line, make sure that you have Java enabled in your browser. The quiz uses Java 1.2, and you need a browser that supports that version.

If you're a java geek and want to play with it, there's a jar file and the Java source available.

I'm just making this available because I think people can get some use out of it. Please don't take it and claim it's yours. Don't try to sell it to anyone, whole or in part, without asking me first. And most importantly, don't try to use this for actual navigation. I don't know how you could, but please don't try to prove me wrong.

As I say, the quiz was a couple hours of fairly enjoyable time spent for me. I'd rather make it available for people to use than get all tied up with shareware arrangements or pay pal or any of that crap. But if you absolutely love the quiz, spend all your idle hours using it, and have to give money to someone in appreciation, the AOPA, EAA, and other fine general aviation agencies all need money. Feel free to send them a buck on my behalf, or to buy some fuel from your local airport and go fly. If you do any of that or just find the quiz useful, drop me an e-mail to let me know. Also if you have problems, let me know.

This page written and maintained by Ted Faber.
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