How do you open the constellationship.fab file?

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Anonymous
2013-08-09
2013-08-12

  • Anonymous
    2013-08-09

    Hello,

    I'd like to modify the lines of some of the constellations in the Stellarium on my computer and I have been told to go to the skyculters folder and then in each culture's folder there is a file called the constellationship.fab file which contains the pair of stars that are used to "draw" each line in a constellation.

    I wasn't able to open that file, though, and couldn't find a way to do it on the internet. How do you open the constellationship.fab file?

    Thanks

     

  • Anonymous
    2013-08-10

    On my computer I can open the file with a text editor like Notepad++, Editpad Lite.

    However under Windows 7 and 8, when you save the modified file you will get a warning that the file is in use by another program.
    First copy the file to another directory and keep a copy of the original.

     
    • Anonymous
      Anonymous
      2013-08-10

      Many thanks for your reply.

      Before I started to try Notepad++, or Editpad Lite, your reply prompted me to try something else. I have "Free File Viewer" and tried opening constellationship.fab with that and, I'll be darned, it opened.

      Is what I see when you open it that way what you're supposed to see, though: just an abbreviation of the constellation on the left margin with a string of numbers (Hipparcus) for individual stars, I believe, like the below? This is how Musca, Octans and Apus appear in the list:

      Mus 4 62322 57363 57363 61199 61199 61585 61585 62322
      Oct 3 107089 112405 112405 70638 70638 107089
      Aps 2 72370 81065 81065 81852

      And, if you want to modify how the lines are drawn for a constellation, how do you do that from these strings of Hipparcus numbers? From what I'm seeing, it's impossible to tell which Hipparcus numbers go with which lines in a constellation.

      Could it be just that I opened this file with "Free File Viewer" and that's how the information in constellationship.fab looks opened that way, and, if I open it, say, with Notepad++ or Editpad Lite it'll look different and it'll be clearer how I can go about the work of changing the constellation lines?

       
    • Anonymous
      Anonymous
      2013-08-10

      Following up my reply starting off with "Many thanks for your reply," I've noticed that in all the strings of Hipparcus numbers for each constellation there are an even number of Hipparcus numbers listed and that if you count these numbers as pairs the numbers of pairs matches the digit immediately after the abbreviation for each constellation as in 4 Hipparcus numbers for Aps (Apus) making 2 pairs, hence Aps 2 72370 81065 81065 81852.

      Does this mean, then, that, for example, for Apus, 72370 81065, the first 2 Hipparcus numbers listed, form one line and 81065 81852, the third and fourth numbers listed, forms another line?

      If that's so, then, does that mean that the way to modify constellation lines is simply to edit the Hipparcus numbers with the knowledge that the first 2 will represent 1 line, the next 2 another line, and so on?

      I see why you said to remember to save the original lists of numbers should I make some mistakes and have to start over again.

      What I'm less clear about now, though, is, if the above is right, would I just make my edits and save and the lines in Stellarium will just be changed? Is it as easy as that?

       

  • Anonymous
    2013-08-11

    I see what you are saying, and with regard to the reading of the lines of code for each constellation in the constellationship.fab, yup, you're right, the info is there and I should have read the User Guide more carefully. With all due respect, though, and meant only as constructive criticism to bennifit Stellarium if it wishes to increase the range of people who find it user friendly, and I wish it would because it is a good project: if you don't know a lot about software, the User Guide isn't clear in places. For example, on the process of modifying constellation lines, someone without a lot of knowledge about software is left to make assumptions and ask people if they're right because the User Guide does not make that explicit.

     
  • barrykgerdes
    barrykgerdes
    2013-08-12

    We must appologise for the unfinished user guide. It was written for the earlier versions that were compiled differently and has not been updated recently in this area. However the most important parts are described.

    In regard to editing many of the data files, the .fab files are written in plain text and can be opened with any good text editor. many of the .dat files are also written in plain text. I try to use wordpad on all files. However some of the larger data files originally written in plain text are now in a compressed form and need to be expanded first.

    Barry

     


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