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Good news for beginning astronomers as well as serious observers! This astronomy software, which was originally released for Macintosh only, is now available for PC computers as well. The updated version continues the product’s tradition of quality and usability, and includes additional options and information.
Featuring data on over 19 million stars, planets, moons, galaxies and nebulae across 14,700 years of time, Starry Night redefines the infinite sky. Users can search the program’s files for specific objects. The screen then pans from the current sky location to the location of the object in question. Clicking on the “Get Info” button opens a pop-up window with important data about the object in question. If unsatisfied, a simple click accesses an Internet astronomy search engine that provides a list of astronomy-specific databases and initiates searches for additional information about the object.
In addition to the standard planetarium-type show of the night sky, Starry Night allows the user to view the cosmos from virtually any point in the solar system, at any point in time, and with the passage of time. This feature, combined with the ‘movie capture’ capability, allows the user to record interesting celestial events for later playback and sharing.
Other features include the ability to create and alter orbits of objects, and control certain telescopes with the use of a plug-in software tool included with the program. Viewable example files include eclipses, alignments, planet flybys, comet approaches and more.
One new use of the progam our reviewers reported: loading the program on a laptop computer and taking it outside to help identify objects in the night sky.
PC: Windows 95, NT 4.0 or later, Pentium or faster cpu, 15 - 60 MB hard drive space, 16 MB RAM, SVGA 256 color-capable display, CD-ROM drive.return to top of page
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