Creating addictive… anything, from catchy songs to software

Creating addictive… anything, from catchy songs to software

I am always looking for tips on how to make DS a package people may want to use even if there is no astronomical event coming up or if the nights are cloudy for example. I was thinking if there was any possible link to anything that is catchy: music, potato chips, movies, books, and of course software. With just relatively dull tools such as MS Word, or Excel, this is not necessary as these are task driven and not emotionally driven. But the...

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50 years ago…

50 years ago…

Fifty years ago this month of November, the Saturn V moon rocket, took to its wings for the very first time. T-minus-Zero of this unmanned flight came at precisely 7 AM Florida time. Walter Cronkite would yell “Our building’s shaking here. Our building’s shaking!” as pieces of his set started to fall apart. But who can blame him, as the most powerful rocket that has ever flown took off a scant 3 1/2 miles away. The USSR’s N-1 moon rocket had...

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Distant Suns and iOS 11

Distant Suns and iOS 11

I’ve received a couple of reports that Distant Suns-Max and iOS 11 don’t play well together, and while I can use the excuse “IWoMM” (It Works on My Machine), I’ve touched up a couple of things that may have caused the issues. I’ve been working on a new version for nearly 3 years now, and just haven’t paid much attention to the existing versions. Fear not! I haven’t abandoned it! The DSM fix will...

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The “Great American Eclipse” lived up to it’s name

The “Great American Eclipse” lived up to it’s name

When I was asked last week about how many eclipses I’ve seen, I must respond define ‘seen’. Ultimately, I’ll answer with “1.5.” My very first total eclipse adventure in 2010, had our group missing the eclipse by 500 feet. Huh? The drivers hired to take us to the viewing site in Patagonia planned four years earlier, decided at the last minute that they had a better place for us. With totality being a scant 1 degree above the horizon, there was...

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Distant Suns T+30 years and counting

Distant Suns T+30 years and counting

Thirty years ago, last April, a new software application for the Commodore Amiga went on sale. Named Galileo, it eventually would be renamed Distant Suns and go on to be one of the longest lived consumer software titles in history. When growing up I loved planetariums. So much so, that I actually wrote and produced my own show for my 7th grade class, giving it at a local community college’s planetarium. Whenever I went to a show, I would always...

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