I have found a new software on the net that I really can spend hours and hours toying around with. This is Celestia – a beautiful astronomical and scientifically correct model to the best of our understanding yet of the universe. Celestia works on Windows, Linux and Mac OS X as well.
You quickly learn how to use the zoom in and out features, how to track celestial objects through the sky but the one thing that strikes me the most is how incredibly alone I feel after a while. I have been standing on Phobos and Deimos, looking down on the face of Mars and although they are just small rocks they are quite far away from the planet that they orbit. I have been amazed over how far from the planet some of the satellites of Jupiter and Saturn are and the sheer number of orbiting bodies around Neptune. And then I suddenly stumbled uppon Cassini, the space probe, still going toward the outermost parts of the solar system.
I have traveled to galaxies far beyond a human comprehension and lost myself along clusters too far from the sun that it was impossible to see the Milky Way again. I have discovered the Greater and Lesser Magellan Clouds and amazed that we and Andromeda are so close in a universe on a perverse macro scale.
This my friends are just amazing. And it is freeware. Download, enjoy if you are an Astronomy buff.
This is going to be a rather lengthy post again but bear with me. It will also be a bit technical so I will have to explain some of the basic technical points before we start on the really nifty things here. But in the end you will learn how to use your GPS receiver to track your movments when shooting outdoor, you will learn how to download this information and use it to geocode your pictures so that when they are uploaded on sites such as Flickr your photographs will automatically appear on the map in the correct location.
The resons for geotagging
It is a way of organising your photographs that is pretty new actually. Never before has it been so easy to know where a certain photograph was taken and it is a great way of finding other people’s photographs from a certain location.
It also means that if you use your GPSr when you are on holiday you know exactly on which spot you were when you took that picture and it is a great way of sharing information about good photographic spots, not to mention that it sort of becomes a photographic diary, tracking your movements around with your camera and GPSr.
There many be also personal reasons for geotagging, for me it started because I am a map freak. I love maps in all sorts of ways and I spend half a fortune on them. These days I mostly use electronic maps because they are more versatile but when I go hiking I always have a paper map as a backup – you never know when electronic will fail you.
There are two kinds of photographers, those who has experienced equipment failure and those who will.