When I became reinterested in
astronomy, I realized that my Palm PDA would be very handy in
identifying, organizing and listing the objects I observed. The
Palm OS program Star Pilot
and the Pocket PC
are great in locating
and identifying objects, but I couldn't find anything for the Palm that
would let me keep a record of what I had seen and help me organize my
observations like a birding list does for birding enthusiasts.
I'm a lister, and already use Handyshopper
on the Palm for
many of my listing tasks, so I decided to create a Life List database
for common astronomical objects. I created a list from several
life lists that I have seen in print, and tried to modify it to fit the
format of Handyshopper.
The categories are broken down into asteroids, comets, constellations,
M objects, meteor showers, misc., moon, notes, nova, planets, stars,
The "stores" are broken down into the four seasons, and the objects
appear in the season that they are normally attributed to.
The format generally shows an object, a modifier (usually the
constellation) , and a date that defaults to the date the object is
checked off the list as complete.
The display has two sorts. When in "ALL" the category displayed
is sorted alphabetically. When in "NEED" (which is best for
checking off the objects) the category is sorted by the second field,
usually the constellation.
As you check the objects off, it will strike through them and add the
date completed. There are many additional possibilities (such as
adding notes to each item) that are functions of Handyshopper.
If you haven't used Handyshopper, this may sound like a bunch of
gobbledygook. But trust me, if you like listing, you going to love
Handyshopper is FREEWARE and the home site is http://chrisant.home.comcast.net/
the YAHOO group is
Grab my Astronomy Life List
to use with Handyshopper
Let me know what you find and how it can be improved.
I tested the database with Handyshopper for the Pocket PC, and it seems
to be working fine (6/7/2005)
HandyShopper for the pocket PC