New Astrology Software Features

AstrolDeluxe Reportwriter, Version 5


Here are the details of features that are new to version 5 of the AstrolDeluxe for Windows astrology software program.

Display and Print Chartwheels in Spanish and Other Languages
Save and Recall Alternate Versions of Your Print Courtesy Information
Save and Recall Transits List and Progressions List Settings
Save and Recall Aspect Orb Sets
Save Charts to Graphic Image Files
ASCII Chartwheel for Sending Charts by E-Mail
Save Wheel to Web Page HTML File
Swap Inner/Outer Charts on Double Wheel
Triple Wheel
32-bit version 5.0 enabled for Chinese, Japanese, & Korean Windows
Customize Orbs for Declination Aspects
Customizable Quindecile Aspect
Version 2.5 of Font Mapper
Tables of Declination Aspects and Declination Synastry
Show Declination Strength Instead of Orb in Reports
Show Simple Orb Strength for Synastry Aspects
Declination Antiscia Charts
Void-Of-Course Moon in Chart Analysis Table
Ephemeris Generator
Pop-up Rotate/Rectify Chart Feature
Auto Calculate/Animate Feature
Astro Clock
Table of Rise/Set/Culminate/Anticulminate Times
Parans
Table for Primary Directions
Prime Vertical Chart
Harmonic/Modulus Charts
Sensitive Points
Pop-Up Interpretations of Planetary Pictures
Dominant Chart Harmonics in Chart Analysis Table
Search By Strongest Harmonic
Search for Declination Aspects
Search for Moon Void-of-Course Charts
Search for Charts with Retrograde Planets
Search for Sign on House Cusp
Search for Intercepted Planet
Search for Intercepted Signs
Search for Linked Houses
Search for Planet on Cusp
Search for Planets Within Sign Decans
Search to Exclude or Include Derived Charts
Save Search Results to Named Charts Files
Show Pop-Up Formulae for Arabic Parts
Access the More Chart Data from the Chart Information Screen
Backup/Restore Charts File
Update System Clock over the Internet
Verify Time Zone Setting for Here & Now Button
Export and Import Chart Data in Human-Readable XML Format
Import AAF Exchange Format Chart Files
Expanded List of 193 World Time Zones.
Increased Accuracy for the Planet Pluto.

 

Display and Print Chartwheels in Spanish and Other Languages

When you have a chartwheel displayed, you can now click on Edit, Different Language. This will give you a listbox of the available different languages. English and Spanish will appear, at a minimum. Selecting the language will cause the text that displays and prints for the Chart and Graphic Aspects wheel pages to switch to that language. The rest of the astrology program will remain in English.

This will allow astrologers who print the new Personal Path in Spanish natal interpretation reports to accompany these written reports with Spanish language chartwheels. The language used for the date of birth is determined by what language the user has selected at Start, Settings, Control Panel, Regional Settings.

The program is reading from language files that are named ASTTEXTD.ENG and ASTTEXTD.SPA for the English and Spanish files. When you select a preferred language, the program copies one of these files to ASTTEXTD.INI, from which the program then gets certain messages and captions. These files are identical to the ASTTEXT.??? files that volunteers have created for the hobbyist-level Astrology for Windows program, except that the house systems from 300 to 309 have been filled in, and more messages have been added from 361 to 382. These files are plain text files that you can use Windows Notepad to view and edit. So, looking at the English and Spanish examples provided, it should be easy for any customer who wants chartwheels in a different language to copy and add to one of the other 13 language files that come with the Astrology for Windows program that is a free download from http://www.halloran.com/

Save and Recall Alternate Versions of Your Print Courtesy Information

The astrologer who is printing charts and reports in different languages will want to easily switch the language that appears in the Courtesy Information block on a chartwheel. To support this, I added two command buttons to Customization, Print Courtesy. The button Save to File lets you permanently save the current courtesy text to a file other than the WINASTRO.INI file (where the program stores the current courtesy information). The save to file dialog box lets you save to a file name of your choice that will have the *.ci extension. The button Load from File lets you retrieve a previously saved courtesy text set. When you load a saved set, that will become the current courtesy information, replacing the current set.

Save and Recall Transits List and Progressions List Settings

Using the same logic as Save and Recall Alternate Versions of Your Print Courtesy Information, I added two command buttons, Save to File and Load from File, to Options, List Transits & Progressions. Use these buttons to make the program remember different settings that will create lists for your different purposes. Save different settings to differently named files that help you to remember what that settings file is for. When the Transits radio button is selected, the buttons will save to and read from settings files that end with the *.tls extension. When the Progressions radio button is selected, the settings files will end with the *.pls extension.

Save and Recall Aspect Orb Sets

I added two command buttons, Save to File and Load from File, to Customization, Aspect Orbs. This lets the astrologer save named sets of aspect orb widths for easy retrieval. For example, if the astrologer wants to run a progressions list involving just conjunctions of the progressed moon (which would also give sign and house ingress dates), then the astrologer would want to have an aspect orb set for Progressions that zeros out all the aspects other than the conjunction. After tabbing through the orb width fields and changing the values for all the remaining aspects to 0, the astrologer would click on Save to File and change the name default.aop that comes up to conjonly.aop and click on Okay. When you want to use this aspect orb set in the future, make sure that the Aspect Orb screen is set to Progressions and click on Load from File, select your conjonly.aop file, and click on Okay to have those orb widths be automatically loaded and saved as the current progressions orb widths. When you are done with the list calculation that uses this special set of orbs, return to Customization, Aspect Orbs, select Progressions and either click on the Return to Default button or load another previously created aspect orb set.

Save Charts to Graphic Image Files

This new program version allows you to directly save graphic charts to compressed image format files for display at your web site or for attaching to e-mail messages to friends. The available types of chart image files can be seen at the Chart Information Screen, File menu option, Save Chart as Image File, Save as Type. These types include: PNG (Portable Network Graphics); GIF (Compuserve Graphic Image File); JPG (JPEG); BMP (Windows BitMap); PCX (PCX); TIF (TIFF - Tagged Image File Format); and WMF (Windows Metafile). The Portable Network Graphics (PNG) image format that is listed first is not as well known as the GIF or JPG format, but it works fine with both the Netscape and Microsoft browsers. I believe that for the PNG and JPG types to capture correctly, the number of screen colors needs to be set to at least 256 colors.

The chartwheel images can be either the screen resolution wheel or a higher resolution wheel - the Save Page as Image File option. You can change the size of the saved screen wheel image by maximizing or resizing the Chart Information Screen of AstrolDeluxe ReportWriter. You can affect the appearance and file size number of bytes by changing the screen resolution and number of colors at Start, Settings, Control Panel, Display, Settings.

The best image file choice for a desktop publishing document is the higher resolution wheel image, which resembles a printed chartwheel page (at lower resolution than a printed page). To create this, you need to have Control Panel, Display, Settings for your Windows computer set to at least 1024 by 768. You can also get the page format chart image file to work with your computer display set to higher resolutions, but there will be no change to the resolution or appearance of the image. You should have a fast computer to use the Page Image File because the computer takes longer to create it. You can experiment with the different appearances of the page image file with Bold Glyphs checked On or Off on the Customization menu to see which appearance best suits your needs. In order to have the page format image be in color, turn on color printing at Customization, Chart Colors. If you need to clip the chartwheel into a rectangle, and the long birthdate line is intruding into this rectangle, you can turn off including the day of the week in your long date format at Start, Settings, Control Panel, Regional Settings, Date.

The saved images are bitmap images, not vector images. Even the WMF save option merely encapsulates a bitmap image in a Windows MetaFile. The program uses the following 32-bit control to save these images:

TwistedPixel Imaging Control v0.95
Copyright Bananas Software Inc 1996-1998
All Rights Reserved.

ASCII Chartwheel for Sending Charts by E-Mail

The program will make a chartwheel for you that is made of all ASCII characters, suitable for sending in the body of e-mail messages. Asterisk characters make up the chartwheel circle and house cusps. The subject's name and birthdata appear at the chart center, with the place coordinates, time zone, house system, zodiac type, name of birthplace, remarks, and (if you have entered it at More Chart Data) the source of the birth data. The ASCII wheel is 71 characters wide and 29 rows high. If more than six planets need to print within a particular house, the remaining planet positions will print on an Overflow line at the bottom of the chart.

You will find ASCII chartwheel options at the Chart Information Screen's File menu and Edit menu, where you can copy to the Windows clipboard. The clipboard is the easiest way to transfer data from one Windows program to another Windows program, in this case, from your astrology program to an already open message in your e-mail program, which has an Edit menu too - its Paste command will paste the current contents of the clipboard to your cursor location.

Windows e-mail programs tend to display in proportionally pitched fonts in which columns do not line up regularly because each character is a different width, with the space character being especially narrow. AstrolDeluxe ReportWriter therefore gives you the option to copy two versions of the ASCII chartwheel to the Windows clipboard for pasting into e-mail. The first version with spaces between the characters includes the following message underneath the wheel:

"In Windows, select the above wheel and do Edit, Copy. Then start Clipboard Viewer in Accessories, maximize, and click on Display, OEM Text."

The second version replaces the spaces with the underline character (_), which has normal width on Microsoft-supplied proportional fonts. The next section has a link that you can click to see a sample. This gives you confidence that the person who receives the chart that you paste from the Windows clipboard will immediately see it as a round chart and be able to read it with minimal distortion. (This is fine for personal e-mail, but the robomoderator for the alt.astrology.moderated newsgroup is known to reject messages that contain so many underline characters.)

If you know that the recipient of your message has their viewer set to a fixed pitch font such as Courier, then after you paste the first version into your e-mail, you can delete the advisory text below the wheel. The two solutions above are designed to let your correspondent quickly see a round wheel without the intrusion of having to change his viewer's font settings.

Save Wheel to Web Page HTML File

This option is at the Chart Information Screen's File menu. You can save to any file name as long as the file ends with the .htm extension. HyperText Markup Language (HTML) pages do not allow more than one consecutive space, so the HTML page shows the ASCII wheel with the underline characters replacing the space characters. The created file includes HTML tags to display the wheel in the browser's fixed pitch font so that everything lines up regularly. You can change the <TITLE> element in the <HEAD> section from the default "Astrology Chart". You can also change the background color in the <BODY> section from the default light yellow. Or you can just copy and paste the content lines below these elements into an existing page that already has its own elements.

Click to see a sample of the ASCII format wheel as an HTML page.

Swap Inner/Outer Charts on Double Wheel

After you have used Compare This Chart to Another from the File menu of the Chart Information Screen to create a double wheel of two charts, there will be an option on the Chart Information Screen's Edit menu, Swap Inner/Outer Charts. This causes the chart that was in the outer circle to move to the inner circle and its houses to be used for the double wheel chart. The planets of the inner chart move to the outer circle. This lets you quickly see the mutual planets in the houses for the two charts. You can also do this after comparing a return chart or a progressed chart to the natal chart.

Triple Wheel

The program now makes it easy to display and print a triple chartwheel. A triple chartwheel typically allows the astrologer to visually see both the progressions and transits that are affecting a subject's natal chart for a particular date. The program lets you substitute instead of the progressed chart a return chart, or any of the other derived charts that are available on the Options menu, such as the novien chart, solar parts chart, lunar parts chart, planetary nodes chart, declination equivalent chart, or solar arc directions chart.

After you have the program calculate any of these charts, you can pick the File menu option at the Chart Information Screen to Compare [type of chart] to Natal Chart, thereby drawing a double chartwheel with the natal chart at the center. Once you have this double wheel, there will be a new File menu option, Compare to Third Chart. This option takes you back to the Natal Information Screen in compare mode, allowing you to click on the Here & Now button and Calculate to display the transiting planets in the outer wheel of a triple chart. Click to see a sample triple wheel for Julia Roberts in black & white page resolution format, color page resolution format, or in color screen resolution format.

If you wish, however, the outer wheel can be any chart that you enter or that you have previously saved and now select from the Saved Chart Listbox.

Some program users want to see the transits to two people's charts at once. After you compare two people and have their biwheel on the screen, underneath the File menu option Compare [chart subject one]'s Chart To Another you will find a new option, Compare to Third Chart, which will let you calculate and put the Here & Now current transits in the outer circle of a triple wheel chart.

Each circle of the triple wheel shows the planet positions rounded to the nearest degree, together with a flag for retrograde motion, if applicable.

To print the triple chartwheel, simply click on File and Print.

32-bit version 5.0 enabled for Chinese, Japanese, & Korean Windows

Microsoft sells Double Byte Character System (DBCS) versions of Windows for computer users in the Far East where single byte fonts are not sufficient to represent the number of written characters. 16-bit versions of astrology programs work okay on these systems mainly because these Windows 3.1 programs are unaware of their surroundings. 32-bit programs for Windows 95 and higher must be adapted to DBCS Windows systems for matters such as displaying characters above character 128, displaying information in local written characters, and compensating for smaller default font sizes.

AstrolDeluxe ReportWriter now allows the user to enter using local DBCS characters such items as the program user's name during installation, the chart subject's First Name and Last Name, the chart Remarks, the lines of text in the Courtesy Block and Courtesy Footer in Customization, all of the items at More Chart Data, the interpretations in the Edit Interpretations program, and the desired font for each item of the interpretation reports. This program improvement allows users of Japanese Windows, for example, to generate interpretation reports that are entirely in Japanese.

It was found necessary to disable the Font Mapper when the program detects DBCS Windows, as Font Mapper only works for astrological glyphs in a font file of single byte characters. This means that customers on DBCS versions of Windows should not order the $49 Halloran TrueType Font of astrological glyphs - it cannot be made to work because some of the glyph characters are in the range of DBCS character leading bytes.

Customizable Orbs for Declination Aspects

We added to Customization, Aspect Orbs, the ability to specify orbs separately for declination parallels and contraparallels, where the default value for both Lights and Planets is set to 1.2 degrees.

Customizable Quindecile Aspect

At Customization, Aspect Orbs, we added a new QDC aspect with the ability to customize the value of this aspect, as traditionally the Quindecile is a minor 24 degree aspect, but Noel Tyl and his students are using the name for the 165 degree aspect. A few astrologers in Europe use the term Tao for the 165 degree aspect, but Quindecile is more descriptive as the 24th harmonic divides the circle into 15 degree intervals. The 165 degree aspect has been found to correspond to disruptions and obsessive determination. Noel Tyl's article on 'Minor Measurements, Major Meanings' appeared in issue #76 Dec/Jan 1997/98 of the Mountain Astrologer magazine. The discussion of the Quindecile can be found at Noel Tyl's web site. His student Basil Fearrington's article 'Obsessing with the "QUIN-DEH-CHEE-LAY"' appeared in vol. 66, no. 6, June 2000 of Dell Horoscope. The research by Al H. Morrison and Zane Stein on the 165 degree aspect appeared in Stein's book, Essence and Application: A View from Chiron, first published in 1985.

By default, the text box for this aspect's angle at Customization, Aspect Orbs will have 165 in it, but you can change that to 24 or any angle that you want.

Version 2.5 of Font Mapper

You can now use the Font Mapper program that you start from Customization, Map Astrological Fonts, to map the glyph symbols for the Quindecile aspect, the Parallel, and the Contraparallel for use by AstrolDeluxe ReportWriter in its text tables. I did not care for the modified Q symbol circulated by a student of Noel Tyl, so I created a 165-degree aspect symbol for version 3 of the Halloran TrueType Font by modifying the opposition aspect glyph, dropping the upper circle and making it so that two lines spread up and out approximately 30 degrees apart, e.g., , similar in appearance to the comet glyph that appears in Webster's Collegiate Dictionary under symbols. The Halloran TrueType Font already had the traditional symbols for the parallel and contraparallel. It is always $15 to upgrade from an earlier version to the current version of the $49 Halloran TrueType Font disk, which since version 2 also includes a separate font of 51 asteroid glyphs.

Tables of Declination Aspects and Declination Synastry

You can now find the declination aspects in their own table by clicking on the Display menu at the Chart Information Screen. I removed the declination aspects from the bottom of the Chart Analysis table. Also, you now have a new biwheel Display menu option, Declination Synastry, which will show the declination aspects between two charts after you have compared them. You can click on the Sort button underneath each table to sort the declination aspects from most exact to least exact. Astrologers are rediscovering natal and synastry declination aspects in part because of the fresh research and new interpretations in the two books by the Magi Society - Astrology Really Works and Magi Astrology: The Key to Success in Love and Money.

Show Declination Strength Instead of Orb in Reports

The ShowDeclStrength command can be selected from the Report Order listbox at Interpret, Report Options when you are customizing the template for a natal report or for a compatibility report. This causes the heading for each declination aspect interpretation to not show the actual orb in degrees and minutes but to show the strength that results from subtracting the actual orb from the allowed orb.

Show Simple Orb Strength for Synastry Aspects

AstrolDeluxe ReportWriter normally calculates compatibility strengths for each synastry aspect in the compatibility interpretation report, and shows these strengths after each synastry aspect. The compatibility report now gives the astrologer the option to substitute simple orb weight strengths for the compatibility strengths that it normally shows. After comparing one chart to another in a double chartwheel, click on Interpret, Report Options, Report Order. Move the SimpleOrbWeights command from the listbox on the left to the listbox on the right and move the command up near the top, such as before the Introduction command.

When you do this, you should remove the 4 communication index commands from the end of the compatibility report. When you generate the interpretation report, do not worry if at first you see the program bring up an aspects grid with the normal compatibility strengths - by the time the program generates the interpretation report it will have substituted the simple orb weights, which are simply defined as the allowable aspect orb minus the actual aspect orb. You can customize the allowable aspect orbs at Customization, Aspect Orbs.

Declination Antiscia Charts

To reflect the fact that I reworked the two declination-longitude equivalent (Dec-L.E.) chart items on the Options menu during the last two years so that the second chart is consistent in always showing the Antiscia positions (the Dec-L.E. positions that are on the other side of the solstice points from the natal planet longitudes), these charts are renamed from Dec-L.E. 1 and Dec-L.E. 2 to Dec-L.E. and Dec-Antiscia.

Void-Of-Course Moon

The Chart Analysis table on the Display menu will now say if the Moon is Void of Course. This line will appear underneath the other Moon calculations on the Chart Analysis table. If the Moon is VOC, then a line will also appear saying what was the Last Aspect by Moon in Sign, i.e., the last Ptolemaic aspect made by the Moon while in the zodiac sign. A VOC Moon is one which will form no more complete aspects before leaving its present zodiacal sign. The time when the Moon is void of course is a time when one should not start new projects because they will not complete as intended. From a spiritual point of view, it is a time when one is free from external direction, allowing one to be inner-directed.

Twelve percent (12%) of individuals are born with a void-of-course moon. Astrologer Janis Huntley found that these individuals are challenged by their turbulent emotions, and often feel lonely, different, and misunderstood. Al H. Morrison found that their moods fluctuate on a cyclic basis. Arlene A. Kramer found two major characteristics: 1) these people trust the wrong people; and 2) there is "something wrong with their sense of timing. In general, they wait too long to take care of personal matters. They procrastinate until a crisis occurs."

Very rarely, a retrograde planet could invalidate the program's void-of-course determination by moving back into a sign, where it can be aspected, after the time of the chart. The program makes no attempt to determine if this rare event will occur.

Ephemeris Generator

From the last choice on the Options menu, you can generate an ephemeris list of planet positions either to the screen or to a file suitable for import into a database program. You have complete control over the date range of the ephemeris and over the time interval between listings. You can select which planets, major asteroids, node and apogee positions shall be in the ephemeris. You can have the planet positions calculated for the time of day that you set for any time zone that you select in the Effective Time Zone listbox. If you set the Interval Time Unit Type to a type less than Days, such as Hours, Minutes, or Seconds, then a time column will be added to the ephemeris next to the date column and its heading will be the Zone Abbreviation for the time zone that you selected. If you want an ephemeris calculated for 12 noon EST on every day and you want there to be a time column reflecting that, just set the Starting Time to 12 hours, the Effective Time Zone to Eastern Standard Time, and the Interval Time Unit Type to Hours and 24.

Depending on if you select Screen or File, you will see either an Output Format frame or a Delimiter Character frame. The program can generate an ephemeris to the screen either in 360-degree decimal format or in zodiac sign format. If you choose the 360 output format, the data in the ephemeris columns will all be numerical. Select this output format either to see the full precision to which the program calculates or to be able to copy the data to the Windows clipboard for pasting into the cells of a spreadsheet program. If you choose the Zodiac output format, the columns will be formatted into dates, and times, with the planet positions in degrees, signs, and minutes and the letters R and D will indicate the date or time when planets turn retrograde and direct.

If you have bought the $49 Halloran TrueType Font, and have mapped it or another astrological font at Customization, Map Astrological Fonts, and you have Use Astrological Font turned on, then the Zodiac format ephemeris will insert the single character planet and sign glyphs, similar to a normal printed ephemeris.

Speaking of printing, depending on how many planets and columns you calculate, after you click on File and Print, you may want to click on the printer dialog Options button in order to switch from Portrait to Landscape mode. Just click on the Okay button, not the Apply button, or you will find your other Windows applications also printing in Landscape. The printed columns can also be helped to fit on the page by selecting a smaller font size at Customization, Body Text Font.

When generating an ephemeris to a file, the default is to do a comma-delimited file, but you can choose your choice of delimiter. If you live in a region of the world that uses the Comma as the decimal symbol [controlled in Windows at Start, Settings, Control Panel, Regional Settings, Number], then you will have to use the Tab or another character to separate the items of each date's listing. In order to import the resulting text file into Microsoft Access, from the Access File menu, open a New database and then Import a Text (Delimited) file where you select the file generated by AstrolDeluxe and click on the Import button. When Access gives you Import Text Options, check the box First Row Contains Field Names and pick Create New Table. The comma-delimited text file format is also the default for Microsoft Access. If you used AstrolDeluxe ReportWriter to create a tab-delimited file, then at Access' Import Text Options, click on the Options button and for Field Separator select {tab}.

Pop-up Rotate/Rectify Chart Feature

You can rotate a displayed chart by a selected amount if it is a normal, calculated chart (as opposed to a derived chart from the Options menu). Click on the Edit menu and select Rotate/Rectify Chart.... You can even rotate the transiting planets in the outer circle of a double or triple wheel chart. Selecting the Rotate/Rectify Chart feature gives you a pop-up form at the center of the screen that lets you rotate the chart in time, moving either the month, day, year, hour, minute, or second with a backward and forward spin button control. For the date or time unit that you want to change, click on its icon button in order to use the spin button to the left to move that unit forward or backward. The pop-up form also shows you the zodiac sign, degree, minute, and second for both the Midheaven (M.C.) and the Ascendant angles. Just as with the time units, you can either change the angle position directly by changing the text in the text box (the program will recalculate the other fields when you tab out of the text box that you changed) or you can select that unit by clicking on its icon and use the spin button control to its left to move the angle to a particular degree or minute.

There are four command buttons on the Rotate Chart form - Cancel, Auto, Redraw, and OK. Click on either the Redraw or OK button to recalculate and display the chart for the changed time - the difference between the two is that Redraw leaves the Rotate Chart form on the screen while OK says to get rid of the pop-up form.

If you want to see something on the chart that is hidden underneath the Rotate Chart form, you can grab the form's title bar with the mouse and move the Rotate Chart form around on the screen.

Auto Calculate/Animate Feature

To see the program automatically move the chart forward or backward and refresh the screen, you use the Auto button at Edit, Rotate/Rectify Chart.... By default, if your first act is to click on the Auto button, the chart will increment forward one day at a time about every four seconds. But if you select a different date, time, or angle unit and click forward or backward on that unit's spin button, the program will remember that and the Auto Animate feature will increment forward or backward by that amount. With Auto on, there will be a tool bar above the chart form which has a Slow/Fast speed scroll bar - this lets you increase or decrease the time in between screen refreshes. If you click on the Manual button on this toolbar, Auto mode will end and the Rotate Chart form will reappear. If you click on Cancel, you will leave Rotate and Auto mode altogether.

Astro Clock

You can make the rotating screen show you the changing positions of the planets and houses for your current location and time according to your computer's system clock by checking the Astro Clock checkbox that is on the toolbar that appears during single-chart Auto mode. When you check Astro Clock, the program will switch from whatever chart you are looking at to a Current Transits chart for the location that you have entered at Customization, User Information. It will refresh approximately every five seconds. If you try to change the speed, you will leave Astro Clock mode. If you try to click on any of the menus, you will leave Astro Clock mode. You can make sure that your computer system clock is synchronized to the correct time by using the built-in function to dial the NIST with your modem that is provided in the Utilities menu of the Natal Information Screen.

Table of Rise/Set/Culminate/Anticulminate Times

When you have a chart calculated for a particular date, you will be able to click on Display, Rise/Set Times to see a table of the times for that date when all the planets Rise, Set, Culminate, or Anticulminate. Occasionally, the Moon will not do one of the four actions on a particular date, so no time will be shown. The times shown are for the center of the body and do not take atmospheric refraction or the body's radius into account.

Because of their ecliptic latitude, the Moon and planets will not be at exactly the zodiac longitude of the Ascendant, Descendant, M.C., and I.C. at the times given, except for those rare moments when the planets cross the ecliptic and have zero latitude.

Parans

Planets that rise, set, culminate, or anticulminate at the same time are in a powerful linkage configuration which the Greeks called 'paranatellonta' in plural and 'paranetellon' in singular. Modern astrologers have shortened the term to 'parans' plural and 'paran' singular. The Rise/Set Times table lets you easily find planets that are in a paran relationship.

There is a toggle bar underneath the Table of Rise/Set Times that says Change to R.A.M.C. for Birthtime. Select this to see the right ascension of the midheaven (R.A.M.C.) of the times when the planets' current positions would cross the four angles of the chart. If any R.A.M.C. in any of the four columns is conjunct an R.A.M.C. in any column then that is a paran.

Table for Primary Directions

This table gives all of the information needed to calculate primary directions for the planets. The information provided for each planet are its latitude, declination, right ascension, meridian distance, semi-arc, and position relative to the closest semi-arc house cusp. The distance from the planet to the meridian is measured in degrees of right ascension. If the planet is above the horizon, then the meridian distance will be to the upper meridian (M.C.) and will be marked with D for Diurnal. If the planet is below the horizon, the meridian distance will be to the lower meridian (I.C.) and will be marked with N for Nocturnal. The planet's diurnal arc is the time that it spends above the horizon as a consequence of the earth's rotation, which time depends upon the observer's latitude and the planet's declination. The planet's nocturnal arc is the time that the planet spends below the horizon. The diurnal semi-arc is half of the planet's diurnal arc and the nocturnal semi-arc is half of the planet's nocturnal arc, both conveniently measured in degrees just like the right ascension and meridian distance. The semi-arc for each planet is divided into three parts for the house cusps - if a planet is on or near to one of these house cusps then it forms one of the Ptolemaic aspects to the angles, such as a trine, square, sextile, or semi-sextile aspect along the semi-arc.

Prime Vertical Chart

The positions of the planets relative to the horizon, zenith, and nadir for the observer's location can be visually shown by plotting their positions on a great circle called the prime vertical, which intersects the zenith and east and west points on the horizon. To see these planet positions, click on Display, Prime Vertical Chart. To cancel the Prime Vertical chart, click on Display, Return to Original Chart.

Calculating planet positions according to the prime vertical is one method of calculating planet positions 'in mundo', a term that is mainly used by Western sidereal astrologers. Mundoscopes are maps of mundane position; they are different for the different spaces defined by various house systems. A mundoscope where the rays of projection are normal to the prime vertical would be a Campanus map. Aspects between planets in a mundoscope are called 'mundane aspects', but you have to specify the plane in which you measure mundane aspects, such as the prime vertical or the planet's diurnal or nocturnal arc. Do not confuse mundane aspects with mundane astrology, which is political astrology. It may not be worthwhile to measure mundane aspects in the plane of the prime vertical because it is not a plane of rotation or revolution. Primary directions measure mundane aspects in the plane of the earth's rotation. The Campanus Mundoscope is measured in the plane of the prime vertical. The examples that I have seen from sidereal astrologers arbitrarily start from the zenith, but this program's prime vertical chart starts from the horizon in the east. The 90 degree and 270 degree positions coincide with the nadir and zenith. AstrolDeluxe could have shown the prime vertical positions in 360-degree format, but it is easier for the program to graphically show the positions in 30-degree zodiac sign format.

If you calculate the rise/set times for the planets, and use the Edit, Rotate/Rectify Chart feature to recalculate for one of the times in that table, the planet in question will be at zero degrees of either Aries, Cancer (90°), Libra (180°), or Capricorn (270°) in the prime vertical chart, respectively conjunct the horizon in the East, the nadir, the horizon in the West, or the zenith.

The prime vertical chart helps the astrologer to visually see which planets rise at the same time and shows if, due to ecliptic latitude, a planet is actually under the horizon even though by zodiac longitude it is in a house that is above the horizon.

Normal astrology charts are 1-dimensional, showing only the zodiac longitude of the planets in the plane of the ecliptic. Prime vertical charts are 1-dimensional also, showing prime vertical longitude, and not prime vertical latitude, but they help you to have a more 2-dimensional view of where the planets are because they take ecliptic latitude into account. If the prime vertical chart shows planets to be in the same conjunction in which zodiac longitude shows them to be, their conjunction may be more powerful, just as when the sun and moon are together by latitude their conjunctions are known as eclipses and have special power.

Harmonic/Modulus Charts

We live in a universe of waves. Waves of light, sound, electricity. Typically, dominant waves are accompanied by subwaves called harmonics which are multiples of the dominant wave, such as two, three, four, etc. subwaves for every dominant wave. Subwaves resonate with and reinforce the dominant wave. Planets along the 360-degree ecliptic plane can resonate with each other if they are spaced apart by harmonic multiples. This is the wave theory of astrology which has been discussed by John Addey in Harmonics in Astrology and by Robert Hand in chapter 2 of Essays in Astrology.

The waves of the 1st harmonic correspond to the 360-degree circle and the conjunction aspect between planets. Waves of the 2nd harmonic coincide with the conjunction and opposition aspects. Waves of the 3rd harmonic coincide with the conjunction and trine aspects. Waves of the 4th harmonic coincide with the conjunction, opposition, and square aspects. Waves of the 5th harmonic coincide with the conjunction, quintile, and biquintile aspects. Waves of the 6th harmonic coincide with the conjunction, sextile, trine, and opposition aspects.

The strength of harmonic aspects can be mathematically predicted by what Michael Rideout calls a "harmonic strength function", according to which the strength of a harmonic number depends on how many divisors the number has, divided by the harmonic number itself. Michael published this theory in an article Re: Harmonics on the alt.astrology.moderated newsgroup on March 16, 2000. Here is the table of harmonic strengths that this function predicts:

p(1) = d(1) / 1 = 1 / 1 = 100%
p(2) = d(2) / 2 = 2 / 2 = 100%
p(4) = d(4) / 4 = 3 / 4 = 75%
p(3) = d(3) / 3 = 2 / 3 = 66.6667%
p(6) = d(6) / 6 = 4 / 6 = 66.6667%
p(8) = d(8) / 8 = 4 / 8 = 50%
p(12) = d(12) / 12 = 6 / 12 = 50%
p(5) = d(5) / 5 = 2 / 5 = 40%
p(10) = d(10) / 10 = 4 / 10 = 40%
p(9) = d(9) / 9 = 3 / 9 = 33.3333%
p(18) = d(18) / 18 = 6 / 18 = 33.3333%
p(24) = d(24) / 24 = 8 / 24 = 33.3333%
etc.

Physicists such as Brian Greene with his book The Elegant Universe are moving in the direction of appreciating the harmonic underpinnings of the universe. "With the discovery of superstring theory, musical metaphors take on a startling reality, for the theory suggests that the microscopic landscape is suffused with tiny strings whose vibrational patterns orchestrate the evolution of the cosmos. The winds of change, according to superstring theory, gust through an aeolian universe." [p. 135]

[aeolian harp (noun): a box-shaped musical instrument having stretched strings usu. tuned in unison on which the wind produces varying harmonics over the same fundamental tone]

The advantage of converting the astrology chart into a chart of a particular harmonic is that all the planets that are in aspect according to that harmonic are immediately brought into conjunction. This makes it very easy to see if waves of that harmonic are characteristic of that person's chart. There are two ways to make the conversion. One can cut the circle by the harmonic number so that the planets fall into their modulus positions - this is what the 4th harmonic modulus 90-degree dial does. Or one can multiply the positions of each planet by the harmonic number, and then map the results back into the modulus 360 circle. Either way, the planets that are in harmonic aspect to each other will be brought into conjunction. I like the modulus dial method better, because the sign positions basically stay the same as in the 1st harmonic circle, while harmonic multiplication changes the sign positions. From the Display menu, select Harmonic/Modulus Chart. You will be able to select or enter a Harmonic number, up to 1028. The button Show Modulus will show you the size of the resulting modulus circle in degrees, minutes, and seconds. Radio buttons let you decide whether to display the planets in a modulus dial or in the harmonic multiple chart. Click Okay to see the resulting chart. You will not be able to save this chart to the charts file, but can select other options at the File, Edit, and Display menus. To cancel the Harmonic chart, click on Display, Return to Original Chart.

While you are displaying the chart in a harmonic mode of 2 or higher, (i.e., less than modulus 360), only the conjunction aspect is enabled for the Aspect Lists on the Display menu, as it is assumed that you just want to see aspects belonging to that harmonic (you can still select Angles, to see all the aspects and angles between the planets in the harmonic chart). Displaying the chart according to a particular harmonic is a substitute or alternative to looking at aspects on the 360-degree wheel - the harmonic or modulus chart brings out planetary aspects of a particular harmonic by showing the planets in conjunction.

The midpoints table for a harmonic or modulus chart does not give the midpoints between the harmonic positions - it calculates the harmonic positions of the chart's actual midpoints. This explains why the harmonic midpoint appears sometimes to be the farthest of the two midpoints. Grant Weisbrot wrote to me, "It is correct to calculate the near midpoint *only* in the first harmonic and then apply the harmonic to this result."

Sensitive Points

Halloran Software purchased a routine to calculate 1381 sensitive points from New Orleans astrologer Grant Weisbrot. These sensitive points can be used to calculate the planetary pictures introduced by Alfred Witte (born Mar. 2, 1878 9:12pm Hamburg, Germany; died Aug. 4, 1941 in Hamburg), founder of the Hamburg School of Astrology which led to cosmobiology (Witte is pronounced Vitt-uh). The program uses the 10 planets, the Ascendant, Midheaven, Aries point and Moon's North Node to calculate 1379 sensitive points which it lists together with the Vertex(VX) and the Mean Point(MP) of all the above planets.

Aside from the positions of the planets themselves, and their midpoints, the majority of sensitive points are of the Arabic Part type, from the formula A+B-C, but they are more numerous than the familiar Arabic Parts which typically set just the Ascendant as point A in the A+B-C formula.

Modern astrologers are a little more familiar with Reinhold Ebertin (rhymes with neighbor-teen), Witte's successor, and author of the popular midpoint interpretation manual, The Combination of Stellar Influences (COSI). Ebertin built upon Alfred Witte's original research and findings regarding aspect combinations involving up to three planet points.

Grant writes as follows:

{begin quote}

I agree that Ebertin's COSI is a good book, but realize that as Ebertin expanded the interpretations, he also *simplified* the method of Witte.

The Witte method is to find Planetary Pictures: A = X+Y-B.

Midpoints are a study in astrological algebra. The terminology is --

Sum . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . X + Y
Difference (or Aspect) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . X - Y
Midpoint (or Half-Sum) . . . . . . . . . . . (X + Y) / 2, written as X/Y
Sensitive Point (or Arabian Part) . . . . . . . . . . X + Y - A
Planetary Picture . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . B = X + Y - A

The easiest way to find such pictures is to systematically analyze each midpoint axis. If it is found that two or more midpoints share the same axis, then a series of Planetary Pictures have been discovered. Besides equal midpoints, one may find Planetary Pictures by equal aspects, equal sums, or equal differences. The use of a 360º or 90º dial (so important in the Ebertin/Witte system) facilitates the midpoint method for finding the Planetary Pix, but I am afraid that movable dial work has been tossed out the window along with the bath water AND the baby, in favor of computer analysis. This is not bad, but the computer can miss obvious patterns. Many, if not most of the time, I find Planetary Pictures that are visibly apparent, but missed by the computer because of the orb. For example a Grand Trine or Square, or a T-Square, or some obvious three-planet configuration is a definite Planetary Picture.

Since we are talking Midpoints --

What you should be looking for are Midpoints that equal a planet: A = X/Y

Also equal Midpoints: A/B = X/Y

In the first case, you will get the planetary pictures:

A = X + Y - A
X = A + A - Y
Y = A + A - X

because if the Half-Sum (Midpoint) of X/Y=A then doubling gives us X+Y = A+A.

In the second case, you will get the planetary pictures:

A = X + Y - B
B = X + Y - A
X = A + B - Y
Y = A + B - X

Whenever the planet is being activated by transit or direction, then the planetary picture is also being activated. To read a planetary picture in COSI, say Y = A+B-X, look up A/B, then read the interpretations for =X and =Y, likewise you can look up X/Y and read for =A and =B.

Let's say you have three midpoints that equal each other, then you solve for each planet separately.

A/B = X/Y = O/P

Thus

A = X + Y - B
A = O + P - B
X = A + B - Y
X = O + P - Y
O = A + B - P
O = X + Y - P

and then solving algebraically,

B = X + Y - A
B = O + P - A
Y = A + B - X
Y = O + P - X
P = A + B - O
P = X + Y - O

When any of these four planets are activated, the planetary pictures concerning these four planets are also active. Midpoints can also be used to find the Sensitive Points -- X+Y-Z -- which are very much like Arabian Parts. The Arabian Part or Sensitive Point completes a Planetary Picture when it is activated by transit or direction or radical planet.

The Witte system also uses the Cardinal Points since they are the Earth's node. Interesting combinations occur if one throws them (AR, CN, LI, CP) into the mix. Then one obtains Sensitive Points based upon Sums (X+Y-AR) and Differences (AR+X-Y), and the Antiscia (AR+AR-X).

{end quote}

Reinhold Ebertin says that the Hamburg School found through experience that the permissible orb for use with sensitive points is only 0 deg. 32 min. on either side (in a footnote following his introduction to COSI). Grant Weisbrot prefers to use the 16th harmonic and an orb of 0 degrees 6 minutes.

Display the position of all the Sensitive Points in the chart by selecting Display, Sensitive Points.

Pop-Up Interpretations of Planetary Pictures

When you double-click on any of the sensitive points, a pop-up form will appear which contains Alfred Witte's interpretations for that point taken from his Rules for Planetary Pictures book. AstrolDeluxe ReportWriter can draw upon English translations of all of Witte's Planetenbilder interpretations because Witte's copyright is no longer in force. Halloran Software's English translations are copyright 2000 and may not be redistributed en masse without written permission. On a systematic basis, Witte interpreted the meaning of single planet points and combinations of two and three planet points (occasionally suggesting meanings when a fourth planet is involved).

In addition to letting you double-click on any point in the Sensitive Points list when you are displaying a single chart, the program also lets you see Witte's interpretations when you select the table of Midpoints or the Midpoint/Planet Aspects or the Sensitive Point/Planet Aspects. When you are displaying a double wheel comparison of two charts, which can include progressed to natal, Solar Arc to natal, and transits to natal, you can double-click on any item in the Planet/Midpoint Synastry list or the Planet/Sensitive Point Synastry list. Witte developed many of his interpretations by looking at contacts between planets in a Solar Arc Directions chart and the midpoints of two natal or S.A. planets. Most interpretations are for the formula X + Y - A, which is suitable for interpreting planets to midpoints, A = X/Y. You will find it more manageable to stick with the few and appropriate interpretations that you get for Midpoint/Planet Aspects for a single chart or Planet/Midpoint Synastry after comparing two charts, although for the sake of research and completeness the program does list and interpret the huge number of aspects of Planets to Sensitive Points.

The Sensitive Point aspects use the same set of orbs defined for Midpoint aspects at Customization, Aspect Orbs.

The pop-up form gives you a total of five command buttons. For research purposes or use in your practice, you can add to or modify any of Witte's interpretations within the text box, up to the record length of 1024 characters, and then click the Save Changes button. The program saves to a file called PLANPIX.DAT (this name differs from the WITTE.DAT distribution file so that you will not lose your edited material when you reinstall the program).

The button Get the Rest will be enabled on the pop-up form for all the Midpoint aspect lists. The button Get the Rest is disabled when you display the many Sensitive Points aspects because the text interpreting all those aspects could exceed the memory capacity of the Windows edit control. Clicking on this button causes the text box control to fill with all the interpretations for both the current item and all items further down on the list. The text for each item will consist of the aspect line as well as Witte's interpretation, e.g.,

Nep at 06Lib03 SQR Sun/Mar at 06Can10
SU+MA-NE: The fraudulent active man. The deceived husband. The impotent husband. To lose one's husband. Checkmated, out of action. Fatigue. Loss of employment.

If you are looking at transits to a natal chart, you might want to click on the aspects starting with one of the slower moving planets such as Mars or Jupiter - the Get the Rest button will then give you a report for Jupiter on out, skipping interpretations for the inner, faster-moving transiting planets in which you are less interested. When you click on Get the Rest, the pop-up text box will expand in width across the bottom of the screen. Not only does this make reading the resulting report easier, but it produces lines of text that are suitable for the Print button to send to your printer.

The Copy button will copy the entire contents of the text box to the Windows clipboard without needing to select the contents. If you did want to copy just part of the text, highlight or select that part and use Windows' Control-C shortcut or Control-Insert shortcut.

The Print button will use the font defined at Customization, Body Text Font, to print the text in the box to the printer. It will print the normal birth data legend at the top of the first page. You can alter the right margin used for the printed report by using the mouse cursor to grab the right edge of the pop-up screen form and changing the width of the form, which includes the text box.

Click on the Close button or on the X at the upper right of the form in order to close the pop-up form.

I ran Witte's report for the list of Midpoint/Planet Aspects for the composite charts of some famous couples who had either tranquil or stormy relationships. The resulting reports did seem to accurately characterize what is known of these relationships. So this is a technique that you can try on composite charts in your practice. I recommend, however, that you keep these reports to yourself, do not give them to the client, on account of Witte uses strong language for the negative aspects which could freak out your clients. You yourself can edit and delete lines from the text box before you print the text to your printer.

Dominant Chart Harmonics in Chart Analysis Table

The 1381 sensitive points are sufficiently numerous to allow the astrology program to calculate a meaningful standard deviation and lack of randomness for each modulus division of the chart. In the Harmonic/Modulus Charts documentation, I mentioned how a harmonic or modulus chart brings into conjunction the planets that are in harmonic aspect to each other, which makes it easy to see if waves of that harmonic are characteristic of the chart. The extent to which a particular harmonic chart's distribution of its sensitive points deviates from a random distribution is a good guide to the extent to which that particular harmonic wave describes the distribution of planets in that person's chart.

For each chart, a listing of the dominant harmonics will now appear at the bottom of the Chart Analysis table. Here is an example for the popular Latin rock singer Ricky Martin:

DOMINANT CHART HARMONICS:

ODD LOWER-ORDER:

9

0.98273

 

1

0.98846

EVEN LOWER-ORDER:

6

0.97067

 

4

0.98844

ODD HIGHER-ORDER:

87

0.94834

 

53

0.96613

EVEN HIGHER-ORDER:

18

0.92691

 

40

0.93710

The calculated value would be 1.0 for a completely random distribution, so for this chart the points arrangement with the least random distribution occurs for the 18th wave harmonic. There is no book that interprets the meaning of different dominant harmonics, so to help you to interpret the significance, I have added harmonic searches to Options, Search for Charts....

These searches can be run on Halloran Software's $59 collection of Famous Charts, which is now in an expanded version 5 with over 4,000 charts. In the case of the 18th harmonic, Ricky Martin finds himself in the company of celebrities who have exhibited impressive range and a sort of invincible youth, such as cartoonist Charles Schulz, actors Val Kilmer, Roger Moore, and Redd Foxx, and actresses Katharine Hepburn and Lynda Carter.

Search By Strongest Harmonic

At Options, Search for Charts..., on the Search Two tab, you can run a search that will find all the charts in your collection that are dominated by a particular wave harmonic. You can specify that the harmonic must be the strongest compared just to harmonics up to the 9th harmonic, the 32nd harmonic, or up to the 180th harmonic. You can also specify that you only want to compare within the same odd or even set of harmonics as the harmonic that you have entered.

If the search is taking too long, and you want to abort the search and see just results found so far, press the Escape key (Esc) that is found at the upper left of your computer keyboard.

Perform a much faster search by clicking the radio button to specify that results must fall below a particular level of significance, such as a random spread of .95. If you select this option, the program just needs to calculate the distribution for the specified harmonic for each chart and compare it to the required minimum, instead of calculating and comparing the significance of all of the chart's harmonic distributions.

It makes sense to only compare to harmonics up to the 9th or 32nd harmonic because those are divisions of the circle by smaller whole numbers, which should be more meaningful, and also because the time-consuming calculation process that the search must perform will finish sooner.

Search for Declination Aspects

In preparation for adding more types of searches at Options, Search for Charts..., I moved the existing three rows of searches onto new top-level tabs which are entitled Search One, Search Two, and Search Three. Then I added the ability to search for either Parallel or Contraparallel declination aspects between any two planets by making these two aspects available at the bottom of the aspects listbox at Search by Aspect on the Search Two tab.

Search for Moon Void-of-Course Charts

At Options, Search for Charts..., on the Search Two tab, you can now find all the charts in your collection that either do or do not have the Moon void-of-course. Because of the Moon's speed, the search option screen lets you exclude charts with unknown birthtimes.

Search for Charts with Retrograde Planets

There is now a search option that will find all charts that have a particular planet retrograde.

Search for Sign on House Cusp

Among the new search options on the Search One tab, you can now find charts that have a particular sign on your desired house cusp.

Search for Intercepted Planet

You can look for charts that have a particular planet intercepted in a particular house. A planet is intercepted if it is in a sign that falls between house cusps, without being on either adjacent cusp. This can happen only in unequal house systems, not in the Equal House system.

Search for Intercepted Signs

You can look for charts that have a particular sign intercepted in a particular house.

Search by Linked House

You can search for charts in which two adjacent houses are linked by having the same sign on their cusps. Read Marion March and Joan McEvers, The Only Way to Learn Astrology, Volume II, Math & Interpretation Techniques, pp. 108-110, for a brief delineation of each combination of linked houses.

Search for Planet on Cusp

You can search for a planet that is on the cusp between two adjacent signs, and adjust the degree window that qualifies the planet as being on the cusp. If instead you want to find charts with a planet on a house cusp, use Search By Aspect on the Search Two tab which lets you specify a conjunction to a house cusp.

Search for Planets Within Sign Decans

The ability to narrow a search for a planet in a sign to just the First Decan Only, Second Decan Only, or Third Decan Only of that sign has been added to the By Sign search.

Search to Exclude or Include Derived Charts

On the Search One tab at Options, Research Charts, you can now reduce the list of searchable charts to Exclude charts that are selected types of Derived Charts, or you can eliminate normal radix charts in order to Include just the selected types of derived charts. The search form gives you checkboxes for each type of saved derived chart: Return, Secondary Progressions, Minor Progressions, Tertiary Progressions, Special Progressions, DR-70 Minor Progressions, Composite, Solar Arc Directed, Novien, Solar Parts, Lunar Parts, Heliocentric Planetary Nodes, Geocentric Planetary Nodes, and Declination-Longitude Equivalents. There are command buttons to Select All or Unselect All.

Save Search Results to Named Charts Files

You can now save the charts that are left in the Research Charts listbox after one or more searches. You save to a charts file whose name you can specify. This function is on the Research Charts form File menu. By default, the file name that comes up will have the form "srch1.cht", where each time you accept this name and save a set of charts, the number after "srch" will increment by one. However, the File Dialog box does allow you to change the name to be a long filename that describes the file contents.

Show Formulae for Arabic Parts

After displaying the table of Arabic Parts, or the table of aspects from the planets to the Arabic Parts, the astrologer can click on any row in the table in order to see a pop-up definition/formula for that particular Arabic Part. For example, if you click on a row with the part of Organization, the pop-up help will show that the formula for this part is Asc + Plu - Sun.

Access More Chart Data from the Chart Information Screen

If you have the More Chart Data turned on towards the bottom of the Customization menu, then this form can now be brought up from a choice on the Chart Information Screen's Edit menu, instead of just from the button underneath the Remarks field of the Natal Information Screen, as in previous program versions. The More Chart Data allows you to enter the chart's Data Source and Rating Class, dated Life History events, the client's Address and Phone Information, three Notes, and a multiparagraph Memo about the chart or client.

Backup/Restore Charts File

This option is on the File menu of the Natal Information Screen. If you choose Backup File, a File Dialog box will allow you to navigate to and select any charts file. Place a formatted diskette in floppy drive A:. A 3.5 inch HD diskette will hold a charts file (together with its associated files) containing as many as 2200 charts. After you have selected a charts file to backup, as soon as you click on OK, it will be copied to the diskette in drive A: You should do this from time to time so as not to lose your valuable saved charts in case your hard disk crashes. It will also make it easier for you to move your charts when you buy a new computer.

If your charts file exceeds 2200 charts, I suggest that you use a tape backup machine, or obtain a file compression program such as WinZip for creating a compressed archive file containing your *.cht, *.ptr, and *.mdb files.

The program makes no attempt to compress the charts files and will only copy to drive A: If you live in a humid climate and are worried about losing data archived to floppy diskettes, I recommend that you purchase a vacuum sealer, normally used for sealing food before freezing. These are available with a range of features and prices, but you can find good models at stores such as Sears and Target for $50 or less. If you live in a humid climate, use these machines to vacuum seal all your valuable diskettes, including your original program installation diskettes.

When you choose Restore File, the program will prompt you to insert a diskette with a charts file in drive A:. A File Dialog box will allow you to choose the file to restore. When you click on OK, the program will automatically copy the file to the astrology program folder and make it the currently loaded charts file.

The program will always warn you if the backup/restore operation would cause a smaller file to overwrite a larger file, and allow you to cancel the file copy.

Update System Clock over the Internet

Previously, the astrology program's utility function to update your computer clock had to dial NIST in Colorado over an analog modem. This did not work well for international users or for users with digital modems, such as always-on DSL modems.

Now the program can update your computer's system clock over an Internet connection. This option will execute version 2.6 of NISTIME 32, a 32-bit TCP Time Client utility written by Judah Levine at NIST, dated May 15, 2000. Just click on Query Server and select Now. If your computer is already connected to the Internet, you will immediately get a message box of the difference between your local system clock and time according to the NIST atomic clock, with the question, "Adjust clock by this amount?", and the choice of clicking either on OK or Cancel.

Click on OK to correct the clock time on your computer. If you are not connected to the Internet, then when you click on Query Server, Now, you will see the Windows pop-up form Dial-up Connection, which lets you put in your password and click Connect to dial the modem.

Whenever you run this option, select File and Update server list. Then after you query the NIST server, click on File, Select Server and see if the list now shows a server that is nearer to your location. If there is, select it and click on File, Save Config.

Verify Time Zone Setting for Here & Now Button

The astrology program will now check that Windows has not changed the time zone (in response to Daylight Saving) away from the time zone that you have set at Customization, User Information. The program will do this when you click on the Here & Now button. If the hours different from GMT that is in Windows does not agree with the hours difference from Greenwich that comes up when you click on Here & Now, a message will appear that shows the Windows value with advice to make the time zone at Customization, User Information agree with Windows.

Export and Import Chart Data in Human-Readable XML Format

Halloran Software has created a way to easily exchange birth data for particular charts with other astrologers. This follows a trend in other industries to put their data in human-readable XML file format. XML stands for Extensible Markup Language. Each industry is creating a set of meaningful tags with which to tag the data elements that are important to that industry. An example of an XML tag that would be important to astrologers is <birth_time>; this tag would bracket the data as follows:

<birth_time>05:35:00</birth_time>

AstrolDeluxe now has an option on the File menu of the Chart Information Screen, Save Birth Data to XML File. This will write the birth data for the currently displayed chart to a file with human readable XML tags. If you want to share data with another astrologer, send them this file. It will have all the information that they need to accurately recreate the chart. If they have AstrolDeluxe or another program that supports this file format, they will be able to automatically import the chart(s) in the XML file, but even if they don't have such a program, all of the data is in readable form. The option to import the XML file is at the Natal Information Screen, on the File menu, Import XML Chart(s).

Here is an example of birth data expressed in what can be called Astrological Markup Language:

<?xml version="1.0"?>

<charts>

<chart>
<birth_data>
<first_name>Paula</first_name>
<last_name>Abdul</last_name>
<birth_date>1962-06-19</birth_date>
<year_month_day>
<birth_year>1962</birth_year>
<birth_month>06</birth_month>
<birth_day>19</birth_day>
</year_month_day>
<birth_time>14:32:00</birth_time>
<time_zone>
<add_to_get_utc>07:00:00</add_to_get_utc>
<zone_direction>West</zone_direction>
<zone_name>Pacific</zone_name>
<standard_zone_hours>8:00</standard_zone_hours>
<time_type>Daylight</time_type>
<zone_abbreviation>PDT</zone_abbreviation>
</time_zone>
<birth_longitude>
<birth_longitude_degrees>118.25</birth_longitude_degrees>
<birth_longitude_direction>West</birth_longitude_direction>
</birth_longitude>
<birth_latitude>
<birth_latitude_degrees>34.06667</birth_latitude_degrees>
<birth_latitude_direction>North</birth_latitude_direction>
</birth_latitude>
<birth_place>
<birth_city>Los Angeles</birth_city>
<birth_county>Los Angeles</birth_county>
<birth_state>California</birth_state>
<birth_country>United States of America</birth_country>
</birth_place>
<personal>
<gender>F</gender>
<remarks>Singer</remarks>
<data_source>BC, Data News #55</data_source>
<data_rating>AA</data_rating>
</personal>
<validation>
<calendar>Gregorian</calendar>
<julian_date>2437835.3972222</julian_date>
<tropical_ascendant>198.8113</tropical_ascendant>
</validation>
</birth_data>
</chart>
</charts>

Right now, the <chart> element has only one child element, the <birth_data> element, but this structure leaves room open for other programmers to add more child elements to the <chart> element later, such as <demographics> or <calc_data>. If you are an astrology programmer interested in adding support for XML, e-mail john@halloran.com for more information, such as for allowable time types in the time_zone element.

If you export to a new file name, AstrolDeluxe will immediately write the chart to a file similar to the above example. If you choose an existing XML file, the program will read the existing charts into a Windows TreeView control, similar to how Windows Explorer shows you your computer's directories and files, with the present chart at the bottom below the existing charts, and you can click either on Add Chart to XML File or you can click on Cancel.

When you import an XML file, the chart(s) in the file will be read into the same Windows TreeView control, and to save them to the currently loaded charts file you would click on Calculate and Save, or you can click on Cancel.

Import AAF Exchange Format Chart Files

You can now import charts that are saved in the German AAF file format. AAF stands for Astrologische Austauschformat. European databases like Taegers IHL and the DAV-database exist in AAF format. Many German astrology programs are able to save charts to this file format. The German language AAF definition can be found at http://www.sternwerkstatt.de/aaf/aaf97/index.htm.

Expanded List of World Time Zones

In the Hours Difference from Greenwich frame, AstrolDeluxe gives you a listbox of world time zones. The previous list of 85 named time zones was incomplete. It has been expanded to the current list of 193 named time zones. The regular zone names that are recognized by the ACS PC Atlas or Mini Atlas appear flush left, while the zone names that are local region duplicates for the same hour:minute values are indented by one space. When you transfer an Atlas Express lookup to the Natal Information Screen, or when you type in that hour and minute in the time zone Hrs, Min, and Sec boxes, the regular zone name will come up, but you can click in the listbox to select the named zone that is most appropriate for the chart that you are calculating. If the program does not recognize the Hrs, Min, and Sec that you enter, the time zone list box will say Local Time (LT).

Increased Accuracy for the Planet Pluto

A new feature for version 5 of AstrolDeluxe makes the planet Pluto calculations more accurate for distant time periods. The Pluto calculations in Halloran Software programs have always had one-minute accuracy for the 1800 to 2100 A.D. period. The new feature gives one-minute accuracy for the 1600 to 2200 A.D period. It adds 1/2 degree accuracy for the -150 to 1600 period. And the release adds one degree accuracy for the -2000 to -150 period.


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Copyright © 2001 Halloran Software, Los Angeles, California
Last modified on April 21, 2001.

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