RE: So I am not a real observer, oh well.

From: Brad Young (
Date: Fri Feb 06 2009 - 18:07:46 UTC

  • Next message: Brad Young: "BY Obs Feb 6"

    <Imagine I quoted everybody>
    This is a hobby - not a job, so there are can be no hard requirements of
    anybody. Expecting people to toe the line and do what you want may lead to
    disappointment. Some folks will not have the patience for binoculars and
    stopwatch; others will not have the inclination, or money, to build a world
    class video setup and maintain it. Others may want to see the ISS (like my
    co-worker) and couldn't care less about unmanned objects. And some are
    content to run numbers and never step outside. There should be room for all
    this, after all, there is a stunningly similar spread of level of interest
    across the entire hobby of astronomy. One quote from Derek was:
    Well, I hope so, because nothing will turn people off faster than being
    ignored or criticized too harshly. Newbies to this hobby will be challenged
    (I know I was!) reading the requirements of reducing and reporting
    observations, with 3 different reporting standards, 2 object numbering
    schemes, bewildering naming conventions, somewhat nebulous PPAS goals and
    the difficulties in predicting positional and optical behavior. I have a
    friend who is a Master Observer but was totally turned off about satellite
    reporting from a few gruff responses about her accuracy. Trying to meet the
    expectations of the 1957 crowd can be intimidating. They invented this
    hobby, and it is daunting to try to catch up with 51 years of experience. 
    Not sure about the comment that we have enough observers; how can I be
    gentle: not many are spring chickens. The path forward should include more
    geographical coverage and mentoring newer observers, and continuing to
    improve the reporting and prediction software and resources (please do not
    read as "dumbing down"). John might've meant we seem to have a lot of
    lurkers (Hi :O) but that's pretty common for mail lists. I've posted maybe
    twice to Derek's IOTA Group, usually to report I flubbed up another asteroid
    I love the convenience of grabbing my 12 x 60s and a chart and running
    outside, or even pulling over at the side of the road on trips. This hobby
    gets me out under the stars every clear night, and away from the TV. I sift
    through what is posted and try to glean what is interesting to me. What I
    call the "dark side", video or CCD tracking is not for me (yet), and I feel
    Scott has this geographical area covered. I won't catch up with Mike on
    visual observing of classified objects, but I can help a bit. Forays into
    highfly objects great fun for me even if my reports are not scientifically
    valuable. I try to reach a "middle ground" of accuracy and volume of work on
    PPAS, classfd.tle objects, and my general astronomy work (mostly DSOs).
    And I can't resist....Kevin may not be a "real observer" :O) but I thrive on
    his alerts of flashers and flares.
    <Jumps Off Soapbox>
    TULSA 1
    COSPAR 8336: +36.128, -95.988, 650ft ASL 
    ACT Observatory
    COSPAR 8335: +35.8311, -96.1411, 1100ft ASL
    Adams Ranch
    COSPAR 8337: +36.937, -96.65, 700ft ASL
    Kenton, OK
    COSPAR 8338: +36.8978, -102.9522, 4400ft ASL
    Subscribe/Unsubscribe info, Frequently Asked Questions, SeeSat-L archive:

    This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : Fri Feb 06 2009 - 18:09:10 UTC