End of Bright Star Edition
Aciqra 2.3 is just a few weeks away and there are a few major changes for users to be aware of.
The first of these changes is the end of the Bright Star Edition. Ever since the addition of the Tycho-2 catalog in Aciqra 2.1, the project has been releasing parallel versions of each release -- one with the Bright Star catalog and the other with the much larger Tycho-2 catalog. The reasoning behind having these parallel versions is so that users who don't need all 2.5 million stars of the Tycho-2 catalog didn't need to download the extra 50+ MB. However, instead of saving time, this strategy caused confusion as to which version to download. As a result, beginning with Aciqra 2.3, only a Tycho-2 edition will be made available. A copy of the Bright Star catalog will still be included with the release for users of older machines. Switching to the Bright Star catalog would then be as simple as changing line of the configuration file to load the "bright" catalog instead of the "tycho2" catalog. For everyone else running recommended systems (8 GFlops per core & 2 GB RAM), the program should fully load within 15 seconds and run with a reasonable frame rate.
Also, the updater will be removed. In its present form, the updater file is in the way of the update. There is no cross-platform solution to such a problem except to separate the updater from the rest of the project. Therefore, the updater will no longer be present. It may reappear in the future as a separate component of the Caglow project. However, due to the low risk nature of the project, an updater is of low importance to Aciqra and few users are expected to use it if and when it becomes available again.
These changes will help maintain the focus of the project -- to build a planetarium for real-world scientific use.