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Thread: Astronomy Basics - How do I figure out star distances

  1. #16
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    Holy Death Rays! That Traveller thing was way more useful than I was expecting! Thanks a million Greylond. It was a games workshop chart compiled from an actual star catalog, complete with x y and z vectors based in light years. Now I just have to find my chosen planets. Stupid mac can't even do square roots heh, maybe I need a widget for that. Let's see, according to google calculator, I got 16.1 light years to Eta Cassiopiae with them, and my reference says its 19.4. Could be drift, since theirs is based off 1969 data, and mine is probably more recent information. I'll monkey with the positions a bit to reflect that its 2150 ad. Thanks for the encouragement everyone! And yeah, Ninjineko, I was thinking a lot about the whole stargate thing a lot because I'm a fan of Fading Suns, which uses jumpgates left behind by elder aliens. I just wanted a free-cruising space system, where you could go anywhere. Eventually I found I had to place limits on it in order to make it playable, but I'm really happy with this new data! It will help make it so much easier to allow more player freedom (if they ever can afford a ship).

    [Edit] Ohh! I just thought - While I will have relay space stations on non life supporting star systems and in deep space, I now need a random encounter table for people who hyperjump to unknown regions of space. *Laughs evilly*
    Last edited by Engineer Doramos; 10-22-2008 at 06:21 AM.

  2. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Engineer Doramos View Post
    Holy Death Rays! That Traveller thing was way more useful than I was expecting! Thanks a million Greylond. It was a games workshop chart compiled from an actual star catalog, complete with x y and z vectors based in light years. Now I just have to find my chosen planets. Stupid mac can't even do square roots heh, maybe I need a widget for that. Let's see, according to google calculator, I got 16.1 light years to Eta Cassiopiae with them, and my reference says its 19.4. Could be drift, since theirs is based off 1969 data, and mine is probably more recent information. I'll monkey with the positions a bit to reflect that its 2150 ad. Thanks for the encouragement everyone! And yeah, Ninjineko, I was thinking a lot about the whole stargate thing a lot because I'm a fan of Fading Suns, which uses jumpgates left behind by elder aliens. I just wanted a free-cruising space system, where you could go anywhere. Eventually I found I had to place limits on it in order to make it playable, but I'm really happy with this new data! It will help make it so much easier to allow more player freedom (if they ever can afford a ship).

    [Edit] Ohh! I just thought - While I will have relay space stations on non life supporting star systems and in deep space, I now need a random encounter table for people who hyperjump to unknown regions of space. *Laughs evilly*
    I used that chart to find the coordinates of the nearest stars within a 21 light year radius! Course, I didn't bother to worry about drift as the data was fine for me.

    About 18 years ago, I had a Mac program that let you use an Excel spreadsheet to give it a coordinate system and it would display a pseudo 3d map of those coordinates on the screen. Can't remember the name but I'm sure that there's got to be programs that will do the same.

    Somewhere I have a link for a newer program that does star mapping, but I couldn't find it so I'll have to keep looking and post it if I do find it.
    Skunk
    a.k.a. Johnprime



  3. #18
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    "And then you wake up."

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    Quote Originally Posted by Engineer Doramos View Post
    Stupid mac can't even do square roots heh, maybe I need a widget for that.
    there are any number of free scientific calculators for download. try apple downloads first, then google it if you still aren't happy.

    Quote Originally Posted by Skunkape View Post
    I used that chart to find the coordinates of the nearest stars within a 21 light year radius! Course, I didn't bother to worry about drift as the data was fine for me.
    copy for me too, please?
    nijineko the gm: AG16, CoS. nijineko the player: AtG, RttToH; . The Journal of Tala'elowar Kiyiik! .
    CrystalBallLite: the best dice roller on the planet! . nijineko the archivist: the 3.x archive

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    Quote Originally Posted by nijineko View Post
    copy for me too, please?
    Found this on the web, it's not the link to the application, got to fire up my old computer for that and then find the link in my favorites, but I've got to hook up a network cable to it first. I'll try and make sure to do that tonight when I get home.

    Anyway, found a revised version of the near star list for 2300 at the following link.

    The main page that the list is on is here. I need to take some time to look this page over, looks like it's got some good resources listed on it.
    Skunk
    a.k.a. Johnprime



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    thank you kindly! i'll try to recall to bookmark those once i get home. ^^
    nijineko the gm: AG16, CoS. nijineko the player: AtG, RttToH; . The Journal of Tala'elowar Kiyiik! .
    CrystalBallLite: the best dice roller on the planet! . nijineko the archivist: the 3.x archive

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    Finally found the website with the star mapping software. I don't own this yet, but thought it was interesting and am interested in buying it.

    Nbos Software
    Skunk
    a.k.a. Johnprime



  8. #23
    Arch Lich Thoth-Amon is offline Cursed by the Gods
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    Very cool, indeed. Me, being a fellow Traveller enthusiast, anything Traveller is cool. Cant ever have enough of a good thing, i always say.
    Thoth-Amon, Lord of the Underworld and the Undead
    Once you know what the magician knows, it's not magick. It's a 'tool of Creation'. -Archmagus H.H.
    The first step to expanding your reality is to discard the tendency to exclude things from possibility. - Meridjet

  9. #24
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    I wonder if Celestia would do what you need. I know people use it for sci-fi games, and it's a free program. You might want to try posting on their forum.

    If Celestia itself doesn't have the functionality you need, one of its add-ons might.

  10. #25
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    Ed,
    This is the sweetest thing ever.
    "And then you wake up."

  11. #26
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    thank you for the links. there are a few free planetarium programs for the mac that i've tried. interesting stuff. i'll enjoy looking through these when i have the time. ^^
    nijineko the gm: AG16, CoS. nijineko the player: AtG, RttToH; . The Journal of Tala'elowar Kiyiik! .
    CrystalBallLite: the best dice roller on the planet! . nijineko the archivist: the 3.x archive

  12. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Moritz View Post
    This is the sweetest thing ever.
    Have you used it for one of your games? I've just played around with it a little so far, though I've thought about using it as a game aid.

    Quote Originally Posted by nijineko View Post
    thank you for the links. there are a few free planetarium programs for the mac that i've tried. interesting stuff. i'll enjoy looking through these when i have the time. ^^
    Celestia is different from a planetarium program, because your perspective doesn't have to be from Earth. You can travel around to different points in space.

  13. #28
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    heh. silly me. i just checked and celestia is one of the mac programs i was speaking of. i haven't used it in a long while.
    nijineko the gm: AG16, CoS. nijineko the player: AtG, RttToH; . The Journal of Tala'elowar Kiyiik! .
    CrystalBallLite: the best dice roller on the planet! . nijineko the archivist: the 3.x archive

  14. #29
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    Anyone knows of a list of detected extra-solar planets somewhere ?
    Au gibet noir, manchot aimable, dansent, dansent les paladins
    Les maigres paladins du diable les squelettes de Saladins.

  15. #30
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    Check out http://www.extrasolar.net.

    I found the link in the Celestia forums. You might want to poke around there a bit; there's some discussion of extrasolar planets. Search on extrasolar and exosolar.

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