A Conversation for Astronomy for Amateurs

A simple flashlight

Post 1


At the McDonald Observatory in the Davis Mountains (central Texas) one very bright night, my family attended an astronomy seminar. Sometimes they allow tours to view through the main telescope but, to our disappointment (although not suprise), it was in use. So instead we, and the rest of the visitors, were shown the night sky with nothing more than a simple flashlight. The guide would point out the various constellations with the light and discuss the shapes, names, and mythology. At first I felt a little cheated, but he was so knowledgeable (and with the flashlight, to my amazement, I really could tell where he was pointing) that I almost forgot about the great big telescope inside. Unfortunately all I remember (this was 15 years ago) is that the Big & Little Dippers are *not* constellations, Ursa Major & Minor *are*, and in the Winter there's a big "W" in the sky (I'ld be willing to bet I could find one any time of year). None the less it was a fun, interesting time and I remember it fondly, if not well.

Shooting Stars

Post 2


I have spent many happy hours watching shooting stars and seeing little satelites floating past. I have tried to learn more about stars but theres just too many of them.

Shooting Stars

Post 3


My Aunt paid to have a star named after me. It's in "Leo". It says so in a big framed certificate. I'm thinking of flying there and charging any sentient lifeforms back-rent. After all they've been basking in the rays of MY star since Christmas '87 FOR FREE. Bunch of moochers.

Shooting Stars

Post 4


I will keep an eye out for your star. What does it look like?


Post 5

Researcher Horay II

I have a question for you guys that maybe you could anser. I read recently that the earth goes through a cycle every 21000 years or so. About every 2500 years the equinox slips back to a preveis constelation in the zodiac. Now a days are equinox is in picsis and soon it will be in aquarius. This is one one the major problems people have with so-called astrologers, thier way of using the stars is outdated by about 2000 years. But do modern day people keep the calendar updated or will spring always be at mar 21? (or is it not another date I am not aware of)??? Well despite man having to reinvent the seasons anyways as global warming has allready created a 5-month long summer.

my question basically is: does modern man update the calendar according to the procession?

interisting fact. Easter sunday christians celebrate christ rising from the dead. But in many cultures, this day represents the equinox,the sun (or god) rising out of the underworld (or winter/nights being longer). According to the procession of the earth, the so-called first easter was at the equinox. Is it not coinsodental that EASTer has the east in thier, the direction in which the equinox is messured?

Shooting Stars

Post 6

Yeliab {h2g2as}

I won't dissapoint you but it'll be had work locating it....

There was nothing on aurorae in the article. Best link the article on my page then!


Post 7


Ooh. now that's a difficult onesmiley - smiley I'll tell you what I will do to find out the answer. I shall keep an eye on it for the next 21000 years and see if anything happens. Hows that?

Shooting Stars

Post 8



I have been keeping my eyes peeled for auroral activity over the last weeks, even on the 14/15th of July when things went crazy. No luck so far. Maybe I am too far south, or I am suffering serious light pollution. Any hints on what one needs to do to see aurorae?


Key: Complain about this post

Write an Entry

"The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy is a wholly remarkable book. It has been compiled and recompiled many times and under many different editorships. It contains contributions from countless numbers of travellers and researchers."

Write an entry
Read more