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These are not the words of advertising copy writers.

They are the words of museum and planetarium professionals, journalists, and of people who actually visit centers of science and learning.  This is what was they said in response to seeing a Stellarium 3D star map.

Stellarium Reviews

> From:          Kyle Hutchinson
> Subject:       Your beautiful work
> To:            postmaster at Stellarium dot com

> To the creators of the Stellaria:
> I am a molecular biologist but I have always been fascinated by the big
> world of astronomy.  I saw the Stellarium at the National Air and Space
> museum for the first time this summer (and made sure to go see it again the
> next time I was in the city).  I thought that it was the most exquisite
> thing I had ever seen. Seeing my tiny place in the Universe was a
> humbling and uplifting experience. I wish there could be a Stellarium
> in every museum, school and church in the world. The Stellarium creates
> a sense of the infinite that a simple gaze into the sky cannot.
> Thank you for creating these extraordinary exhibits.
> Kyle Hutchinson

"It is awesome - one of our most popular exhibits."

Alex Barnett, Director, National Space Center, Leicester, UK

"Spectacular... A great exhibit - instantly giving a visceral sense of the sun truly as a star in three dimensional space."

The Planetarian Magazine, December, 1996, by Jim Manning Associate editor and Director of the Taylor Planetarium, Museum of the Rockies


Mark Peterson, Former Director, Gates Planetarium, Denver, Colorado

"I could just stand there and stare into it for hours."

Jeff Cross, Director, NASA - Ames research center Visitor's Center

"The finest display any lobby can have.  People just head for it, go to it. "

Jim Vickery, former co-director, Johnson Planetarium, Lakewood, Colorado

"The most arresting visual exhibit is the "Stellarium."

Review of “Where Next Columbus?” The Washington Post, December 12, 1992, by Joel Achenbach

" The exhibit's Stellarium can inspire the peaceful, but gripping, awe of the universe that opens thought... ."

Review of “Where Next Columbus?” The Christian Science Monitor, January 4, 1993, by Clara Germani

"Its so fascinating! Its high time the kids had another view of the universe."

Susan Douglas, Discovery Museum Learning Center, Sacramento, California

"Oh Wow!"

One 12 year old to another when running into the Stellarium viewing room at the National Air and Space Museum and stopping dead in his tracks. Probably the most common first words of Stellarium viewers.

"It displays, in the most dramatic conceivable way, the stars in our local neighborhood."

James H. Sharp, former Assistant Director, National Air and Space Museum and former Director, Einstein Planetarium.

"My God! Its full of stars!"

Bob Lai, lecturer, Morrison Planetarium, San Francisco, California

"Unquestionably spectacular."

Bing Quock, Assistant Chairman, Morrison Planetarium, San Francisco, California

"This is beautiful!"

Norm Sperling, Chabot Observatory and Science Center, Oakland, California. Probably the second most common first words spoken by Stellarium viewers.

"Oh!...Oh my! My mind is trying to absorb this!"

Marion Diamond, Director, Lawrence Hall of Science, Berkeley, California

"When you stare into it, it absorbs you. You can become lost in it."

Ruth Williams, Volunteer staff, Morrison Planetarium, San Francisco, California

"When you look at this, you just don't want to walk away from it."

Mark Sonntag, Director, University Planetarium, San Angelo, Texas

A personal perspective by Jeff Carl

For a moment I see a model.  Voices become more quiet and contemplative around the Stellarium. My mind quickly shifts to the cosmos.

All that I have said, done, and thought is but the tiniest wisp on this planet. And Earth itself, with all of the history, triumph, and tragedy of humanity is a microscopic mote completely lost in the vastness of interstellar space. My mind, with its words and thoughts, pales before this timeless majesty. Here is a transfixing beauty beyond ordinary human experience. And at the same time a sense of familiarity, even belonging.  I feel drawn by the cosmos, absorbed by it.

My nose touches the window before me, bringing me back to the model. Yet when I leave I carry this experience of the cosmos with me.

The reality of the cosmos is breathtaking. The Stellarium is only a model of the reality.

But it is a very good model.