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Distant Suns Desktop Planetarum

Software Review

Distant Suns Desktop Planetarium (free version)

Ages 10 and up, younger with help.

http://www.distantsuns.com/ (click "downloads") on the side menu.)

This "lite" version can be downloaded for free. Though it is missing videos and other cool stuff you get on the $49.00 CD, it's still bound to delight any kid (and adult) with an interest in astronomy.

You can see what the night sky will look like tonight, with the planets and constellations mapped out for you. You can watch animations of the planets in orbit - Mercury zips around the sun while Saturn appears to barely move. You can also watch an animated flyby of the Voyager space probes, "hover" over planets, and lots more. The program is easy to use once you read the help files.




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