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We are used to seeing the heavens from one viewpoint, the earth. Beyond some pictures sent from solar system travelers, we havent seen what others might see in distant cosmic places. Using known distances to celestial bodies, a planetarium or internet site could display space observed from the other
From the far end of the Milky Way, dust clouds lit by embedded stars, seen from a new direction, would assume new forms. Farther away, our galaxy could be displayed and compared with others. From another part of the universe, our constellations would vanish, but new ones would be discerned.
Somewhere among the billions of stars, surely some being can view six bright stars that seem to build an exact hexagon. Somewhere else an aliens telescope can magnify a molecular cloud complex assuming the image of a perfectly detailed Buddha.
This does something like your idea [nineteenthly, Dec 03 2004]
Beyond any doubt, the best piece of software I've ever used. [Detly, Dec 03 2004]
Earth View From Mars
[theircompetitor, Dec 03 2004]
||Carl Sagan was interested in this idea. He came up with a star map of the sky seen from Tau Ceti and named a constellation in it as the Six-Legged Unicorn, which had our sun in its tail. Neat idea. It would be difficult to go too far from the Sun though, as a lot of stars would be too faint even to be seen from the HST or hidden by dust clouds. The best you could do would be to make these projections in a region where it was unlikely there were any stars bright enough to mess up the appearance of the sky, or just concentrate on nebulae or other things whose locations and shapes were fairly certain.
||I love the concept that any image will be written in the stars from somewhere.
||You could perhaps even come up with a
pointalism constelation near the center
of any galaxy. +
||There is a free program called Celestia (see link) that allows you to zoom around the galaxy and look at all the pretty stars. It's brilliant.
||Celestia is indeed a deeply cool program. Actually, it might improve the popularity of planetaria if they had a Star Trek or Doctor Who type session where real stars mentioned in the series were used as a basis for showing night skies from different planets, such as Vulcan, perhaps with a projected horizon based on the fictional planet. Maybe they could be sponsored by Paramount or whatever.