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I've just completed a monster rewrite of the old Distant Worlds star charting application. It now has a bunch of new features:

  • Modern HTML5 application. In particular, many label settings (e.g., coordinate grids, star labels, constellation names) no longer require a page reload for every chart. Change one of these settings and the chart changes immediately.
  • Many more preset chart levels including "classic" star atlases like Uranometria and
    the Millennium Star Atlas
  • Over 200,000 deep sky objects including galaxies down to magnitude +17
  • Deep-sky objects optionally link to Digitized Sky Survey images
  • Deep-sky objects, like stars, can be searched for by name and used as target locations.
  • A database that can eventually contain larger catalogs than the HYG and Tycho-2 catalogs currently in use.
  • can still visit every one of the over 100,000 stars in the HYG catalog and see what the universe looks like from them.

Because of all this, the new application got a rename: it's now Endeavour, after one of the most famous ships from which people pursued astronomical observations. In Endeavour's case, it was a rare transit of Venus, at a time when a transit was one of the few ways to measure the Solar System.

As an HTML5 application, Endeavour may not work on very old Web browsers (specifically, versions of Internet Explorer older than version 9). For people with these old Web browsers, or those who simply prefer the older version for some reason, the older application is still available here indefinitely.

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