FAQ

What is One-Minute Astronomer all about?

One-Minute Astronomer is an educational website meant for anyone interested in astronomy and stargazing.  Unlike other websites, One-Minute Astronomer does not present astronomy and space news.  Instead, it gives you tips, insight, and suggestions about what to see in the night sky with simple equipment or with no equipment at all.  When you subscribe to One-Minute Astronomer, you receive a series of short and easy-to-read messages each week that help you learn about telescopes and observing techniques, the science of astronomy, history and famous astronomers, and how to see some of the most beautiful objects in the night sky.

Who writes the articles on One-Minute Astronomer?

Most of the articles in One-Minute Astronomer are written by Brian Ventrudo, a writer, scientist, and amateur astronomer based in Ottawa, Canada.  Learn more about Brian here…

Do I need to know anything about astronomy to understand the articles in One-Minute Astronomer?

If you’ve never learned a thing about the night sky, then some of the articles in One-Minute Astronomer might seem a little tough to follow. You might want to read the free course “Introduction to Stargazing”  to help you follow along at first.  But keep at it… you’ll be able to follow along soon enough.  And if you’ve got some experience as an amateur astronomer, then you’ll find this website easy to understand and (hopefully) quite useful.

I live in the southern hemisphere? Is One-Minute Astronomer useful for me?

Absolutely! About 80-90% of celestial objects mentioned are visible in both hemispheres. Sometimes, I write about something you can only see from one hemisphere or other. But I try to point that out. And of course, most of the history and insight about telescopes, observing, and science are useful no matter where you live.

Do I need a star map find the celestial objects you write about?

No, but a simple star map will be a great help. There are many good star maps available in print and online. You can get a free and simple map that you can configure to your location at http://www.fourmilab.ch/yoursky/.  The free planetarium software called Stellarium is also a very useful tool.  It is available here for Mac, Windows, and Linux.

Can you tell me what type of telescope I should buy?

It all depends on your budget, your location, your interests, and how big a telescope you are able to lift and move around. You will find many good suggestions for telescopes under the Telescopes and Observing category on this website.  This article will also help you get started…

What’s that bright object I see in the sky this evening?

What you see in the sky depends on the time of year, the position of the stars and planets in the sky, and your geographic location. You can create your own star map for your location at YourSky or Stellarium. These applications can identify what’s up right now in your sky.  One-Minute Astronomer also provides a configurable live star map that helps you find out what’s up in your location.  You can access the map here.  (Note: You need a enable Javascript to see this map).

How can I learn more about astronomy?

You will find many useful articles on One-Minute Astronomer to help you learn more about astronomy. You can also learn more through the courses offered by One-Minute Astronomer’s Stargazer University.  All beginners should also check out the book Nightwatch by Terence Dickinson.  You can find this book in most bookstores and libraries.

How can I cancel my subscription to One-Minute Astronomer?

Simply send an email to [email protected] and I’ll remove you from the mailing list.

Can I link to One-Minute Astronomer from my website?

Yes, by all means. I appreciate links from all appropriate websites.

Can I publish your articles on my website or newsletter?

Yes.  The material on One-Minute Astronomer is protected by copyright, but you can use any articles you find on this website if you provide a link back to the site, either the page on which you found the article or the One-Minute Astronomer home page (oneminuteastronomer.com).

Is One-Minute Astronomer a non-profit website?

No. One-Minute Astronomer provides free articles to subscribers and to anyone else who wishes to read the website.   No reader ever has to buy anything.  But One-Minute Astronomer may, from time to time, offer useful products for sale to interested readers who wish to learn more about astronomy.

Can I advertise on One-Minute Astronomer?

Maybe. One Minute Astronomer has limited space for astronomy equipment vendors and publishers of astronomy information products. Please contact me at info (AT) oneminuteastronomer.com for more information.

I have a new theory about cosmology and how the universe works.  Can you help me publish it?

No.  If you have a theory which runs counter to the current scientific consensus, then by all means submit it to a scientific journal for peer review.  That’s how science works.  Even Newton and Einstein had to do the same thing…