Three times a year I leave the rainy, lightpolluted Netherlands to observe under dark skies in France. This summer (2010) I even went to Spain, to visit RETA, a starparty in Aras de los Olmos. Before leaving for an observing period, I used to print many finder charts, put them in plastic folders and ring binders. And besides that I had to take observing guides to the observing site. But all that belongs to the past from now on. I bought an e-book reader with more then enough capacity to contain all charts and guides I need at the eyepiece (I did *not* copy the books shown in the photograph above). In the photograph above you can see what I mean: to the left the ring binders and books (sometimes I take even more), to the left the e-book reader (Entourage Edge). Actually, this is more then an e-book reader. The left screen is an e-book reader, the right one is a 'tablet' I use mostly for email and internet.
The e-book reader part of the 'Edge' has no illumination and the other screen can be shut down, making it possible to read the charts, etc., with a faint red light, just like I used to when using printed charts. It's even better than printed charts, because of the zoom function of the reader.
|The photograph above shows the whole 'Edge', with its two screens. It is easy to fold the screens 'back-to-back', making it even smaller. The e-book screen measures 9.7 inches diagonally, large enough to be able to read the charts comfortably.|
|The photograph above is a close-up of the e-book reader screen, showing a finder chart for Arp 73. Using the small arrows below the chart it's possible to proceed to the next/last page or go back to the former/first page of the file. The # brings up a small window, in which one can enter the page one wants to go to. The first page of the file is an index page, from where I can go to every page I like. The order of the finder charts matches the order of the objects in the laptop of my 'Bartels driven' 20 incher. So the only actions I have to take when I am ready for the next object is pushing a handpad button to let the scope slew to another object and press the forward arrow to let the reader do the same.|
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Email to: Jan van Gastel