awesome amazing FREE 3-D universe program

Discussion in 'General' started by chiefMOJOrisin, Sep 24, 2007.


    this program is quite awesome. it was put together by the astrophysicists at the American Museum of Natural History through their mapping of the universe.

    it allows you to 'go' anywhere in our milky way, outside the milky way, the local group (galaxies) and pretty much anything else.

    theres a tool to put everything in motion and where i was (my favorite, m42) looking back at the milky way's galactic center I could see how everything moves and how my favorite cellestial objects are actually laid out. @ stars u think are next to each other could be light years in front of one another.

    the best thing is its free.

    one flaw is that it downloads into sections of MS-DOS files that have to be open individually and then load into the windows, 3-D program.

    i would suggest this to anyone. not just those interested in astronomy.
  2. Awesome program, a great find. I'd rep you if it'd let me...

  3. thats all gravy.... not in it for the rep. although its a nice perk :D

    makes u think that the people with super long bars of rep (u being one) must have done a lot seeing I also often am not allowed to give rep soon after giving it....
  4. It's taking a bit to learn all the controls and how to get around, but that is VERY fucking cool.

    It makes me want to put on a Buck Roger's costume.
  5. Buck who Rasta?
    showing your age there... :p
  6. Only the coolest space cowboy, maybe aside from Han Solo

  7. Well they recently added Google Universe to Google Earth, it's pretty cool. But this program looks like it'll be a lot cooler. I've got to back to work here in a few, but the d/l will be done when I get back, I'll try it out then.
  8. Just downloaded it. Seems pretty cool, kinda hard to figure out at first. I'll play with it when I have more time.
  9. Yea, the program DEFINATLY takes getting used to. I had it for maybe 3 hours before I posted the thread about it (downloaded it after I read my e-mail from Neil deGrasse.... from the link to the hayden planetarium)...... but I got it down now.

    The Adobe literature is a must read. Seriously.... it brings you through EVERY aspect of the program. It includes extremly beneficial tutorials for the Milky Way part and the extragallactic part. The tutorials takes you through different tasks, step by step, so you learn how to do things instead of finding out and forgetting soon thereafter.

    I'm still trying to find out how to shrink it down enough to get a good view of our solar system. So I can see the planets and their entire orbits....not just a small smudge of yellow or blue line that is supposed to be the planets orbit. Turning on the Oort cloud graphic only shows a small sphere. And the Oort cloud is so much bigger than the area of the planets.... so the must be microscopic.

    Best thing so far, imo, is how the default 'home' position is the constellation of Orion. A bunch of my favorite cellestial objects are bunched in an area near Orion..

    (all locations I give are being viewed while sitting towards the southeast in Connecticut, USA....The latitude 41.204N, longitude is 73.13W)

    Besides the Orion nebula itself (which is hard to see) there is the best nebula in the sky, m42; m45 (pleides cluster); the Hyades cluster; NGC1499 (the California nebula); m35...a small compressed sexy little cluster, which is about 3-4 degrees east/southeast from Mars; m1...difficult to see supernova remnants; m36,37,38... 36 and 37 are small and tight while 38 is a little bigger/brighter and is a quite irregular shape (all 3 are northeast of the star Alnath); m33 an awesome/big/bright galaxy called the Pinwheel galaxy which is pretty much halfway between the stars Hamal and Mirach; and of course one of the coolest objects in the sky.......m31......the Andromeda galaxy.....even though dimmer and smaller than m33, Andromeda has the classic 'spiral' shape with an obviously brighter galactic nucleai(center). I often go outside @ 3a.m. est. and check out the Milky Way in a chunk of sky from east/northeast to west. And straight away southeast is the bright m45 and Hyades............and everything else I rambled on about. All of my 'backyard buddies' are right there as soon as I open up the Milky Way partiview. Whatever the balls 'partiview' means.

    If you change your mode of flying from 'orbit' to 'fly', you can use the right mouse button to zoom in or out. You can zoom out all the way until your 'looking back' at the Milky Way. The button to do that is the 3rd blue 'down arrow' button from the left....right under the top bar where you can click on the window symbol to close, restore, or minimize.

    I'm still learning about this program but I already like it a lot. Another program I have....which is also free..... is called the Hallo Northern Sky planetarium program. It doesn't have as good graphics as the Digital Universe, but its a different ype of program. It gives you a circle that represents the night sky, with the direction you're looking at the bottom of the circle. It can show you what the sky will look like for any spot on earth, at anytime and at anyday. I haven't tried to go too far into the future... but I started from the present and held down the button to move forward by one hour at a time (there is one minute, one hour and one day controls) until I got to my b-day nexy year (7/16). It was quite awesome. You can see all the planets orbiting the sun in their respective directions.... every deepsky object you can think of..... stars up to the like 30 magnification ( I can see up to like 13 with my 15x70mm binoculars).... comets and asteroids.... the current constellations... and more. Then it allows you to print out the sky map in either black sky or white sky. With the Northen Sky program, I print out sky charts for every 30 mins I will be observing.

    The Northern Sky program is an awesome program in its own rights. It is different than the Digital Universe in the fact that it was made pretty much as a tool to assist in observing the sky and the Digital Universe is more of a learning tool. Northern Sky is like 10x easier to operate... but it is 10x less in-depth. Both are great programs either way....... best thing is..............their both FREE!

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