Step 1: Telescope

I bought a small one from

Step 2: Night-Sky App

I got Google Sky Map.

Google Sky Map finding Mars If I get a time-machine, this app is going to Galileo.

Step 3: Weather

Plan ahead for good days.

Step 4: Be awestruck

Start with low magnification lens and finding the moon. Be awed. Try to take pictures unsucessfully with your phone.

The Moon at 17x maginifcation

Step 5: Get familiar

Use the barlow. Try to find your first planet. Try various ways of aligning the telescope with your Night Sky app.

  1. Try taping a make-shift viewfinder atop your telescope. Fails because the viewfinder is not straight enough.
  2. Try sticking your phone to the bottom of the telescope and aiming. Fails because your phone doesn’t have astronomical accuracy.
  3. Try buying a 50mW green laser. Fails because they are illegal in your city.
  4. Try scanning the sky while staying out of focus and actually get some success (because the plantes form bigger blobs then other stars).

Step 6: Experiment

I tried tying my webcam to the lens to take pictures.

Didn’t quite work for Jupiter, though:

Actually, I was able to see the four satellites of Jupiter with my bare eyes.


Extra curriculars