Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Saturn : Jewel of our Solar System

Last summer when Saturn used to be at its best , high in sky I looked at it for the 1st time through a telescope and I was blown away by the beauty of its rings. This is a dream come true for any kid who wants to be an astronomer. It was like a milestone.  Yesterday I was doing a stargazing session and pointed my telescope at the rising Saturn again . It was a bit faint but I could not resist seeing in my own eyes again. It was about magnitude 0.7 yesterday.

I was using my Orion 90mm StarMax Table top due to lack of man power for carrying the large telescope. I used an eyepiece of 10mm to get magnification about 125X. Rings were very sharp and probably I also figured out the Cassini division. I could not locate the 9.7 magnitude Titan because it was near horizon and city light was blocking it.

I don't  have the adapter for A-Focal photography yet but I took multiple shots with my digital camera succeeded in few of them and the sharpest I could take is as follows . I got this picture with ISO 1600, Exposure 1/40 and Aperture 3.3 and focus set to infinity.
Saturn on 18 FEB 2012
Mars and Rising Saturn

The above picture covers Mars at the top in Leo and Saturn at the bottom in Virgo, I will post the annotated one soon.

iPad 2

Today it has been exactly one month since I got my second apple device iPad 2 Wi-Fi + 3G 16 GB. First Apple Device was an iPod 5th Generation with 60 GB Space. Till now I am happy with the the iPad. I am not only blown away by the UI and Graphics but also the superior design and intuitiveness. I am definitely proud owner of the most desirable gadget of this time and the last product released by legendary Steve Jobs.

I love the following per-loaded feature in particular

  1. Safari , one of the best browser on earth.

  2. Google Maps at its best in iPad 2, made for each other.

  3. Front camera is super while using Skype.

  4. iBooks, PDFs looks awesome.

  5. Works as Picture frame even when locked.

  6. Facetime Quality .

  7. Keyboad Splits wonderfully for typing while holding in landscape mode with thumbs

  8. Push Notification , every news , calendar and Facebook post is right there at the top

Following are the things I did on iPad to suite my needs

  1. All the apps I usually use for desktop like Dropbox , Google Maps etc

  2. OPlayer HD lite for streaming movie files from computer using FileZilla FTP server and watching them in TV using a composite cable and adapter . Flex player is an ad free alternative but it can not stream or play in TV

  3. Bought Stellarium-XL for Sky watching , its like Google sky map plus all feature of the Stellarium desktop version.

  4. Installed the VPN setting for work, work seamlessly . I still have no solution for VPN in Android

I also bought a smart cover for iPad 2 , which beautifully sticks to the screen and useful as stand while typing and watching movies.