The Aldebaran – Chronicles of the Stars Pilgrim

Conundrum of Astronomy, particularly in South East Asia

The Intangible Universe

Last week, on Oct, 18th 2008, LAPAN (The Indonesian Institute of Aeronautics & Space) was organizing the festival of space science. With the help of Unawe-Indonesia & Langitselatan community, they catered many activities that related to space science, from just playing many games with the children, learning the basic concept of rocketry & space travel by simulation of water-rocket, quiz competition for junior high-school, and visual-aid creation competition for senior high school.

Indeed it was a fiesta. Baca lebih lanjut

Oktober 24, 2008 Posted by | Astronomy, Culture, Education, Humanity, Nature, Social Activity, Unawe | , , , , , , , , | 4 Komentar

The Giant Snakes and Ladders of Unawe Indonesia

It is great experience to joint another adventure of Unawe Indonesia. Well, i will not go in to the detail of the Unawe stories, since the story can be read from here. Instead, what is so interesting about this adventure, we always bring joy & fun for the kids, and like this time, there was another innovation came into play, that was … The Giant Snakes and Ladders!! (Of Unawe Indonesia).

Yeap, with such a 25 square-meter board, that should be fun for lot of children to participate in the game. Basically, the game is merely another snakes & ladders, but instead of ordinary snakes & ladders picture, the board is full of astronomical pictures, and the ladder & snakes replaced with the rocket & wormhole. Geee, i am landing on the moon, maybe that’s what a kid thought.

See the pictures below here.
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Juni 18, 2008 Posted by | Astronomy, Culture, Education, Humanity, Social Activity, Unawe | , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Komentar

Vatican: The Extraterrestrial Is My Brethren

If for some times believing in alien, extraterrestrial being, ET, is only a discussion in science or even pseudo-science; let’s turn the page! Because here comes a new era, when this topic is welcomed by religion. Vatican astronomer says believing in aliens does not contradict faith in God. Right, so humanity is step into a new era.

But before we move forward, are there really exist extraterrestrial life-forms? Baca lebih lanjut

Mei 26, 2008 Posted by | Astronomy, Culture, Humanity, Nature | , , , , , , , , , | 10 Komentar

The Pilot Project of Unawe Indonesia

During the New Year Holiday, between Dec, 28th 2007 – Jan, 1st 2008, a group of astronomers of Indonesia from different background, working together for the first time in the Pilot Project of Unawe Indonesia. For this preliminary project, they try to travel around some places in Java Island. This expedition called as : Trans-Java Star Party 2007-2008.

The Car 1 The Car 2
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Januari 6, 2008 Posted by | Astronomy, Culture, Education, Social Activity, Unawe | 7 Komentar

Bazaar of Wonder (on Bosscha Observatory)

On 15th of Dec, 2007; Bosscha Observatory, officially inaugurate The Faculty House, christening as Kerkhoven Huis, as the dedication to Rudolf A. Kerkhoven for his contribution to development of astronomy in Indonesia.

Since the Bosscha Observatory is the central playing ground for astronomy in Indonesia, this event has flocked many numbers of astronomy-related people, from professional worker of astronomy to just amateur astronomy-goers, from elementary school children to The Minister of Research and Technology, from astronaut to archeology, from journalist to Ambassador of The Dutch. And the number of visitors? Count only the numbers of the children, aproximately one hundreds children, surely it was The Bazaar of Wonder.

What was happen then, there? The history of astronomy in Indonesia is related with the The Dutch colonial, it was The Dutch who brought modern astronomy to Indonesia, and built Bosscha Observatory. So, don’t be suprirse if the kids also bring the flag of the Dutch around the time of event, since The Ambassador of Dutch is one of important guest.

The Kids & The Flags

The flock of childrens not just representing the basic education, but also as the preliminary project of Unawe Indonesia, and the astronaut of Malaysia bring about another amusement for them.

The ‘bazaar’ not just about astronomy, surely astronomy is the main menu; but there are also planting trees among many other activities. I was curious, why should all the name of the trees started with letter K? Gee ..

The Tree from the MinisterThe Tree from the Astronaut

There was also a group of community of young people who eager to popularized science, known as netsains community. Even in short period of gathering, the link of all science-goers from Indonesia can play more important role to expose science for more people in such a fashion way.

The Netsains, The Astronaut & The Minister

Well, after all of the heyday, the Ministry of Research and Technology of Indonesia cut the ribbon and officially inaugurated the Kerkhoven Huis. This house is functioning as Faculty House and as the Museum of Astronomy. Hopefully this will play a pivotal point for the next generation of astronomy in Indonesia.
In front of Kerkhoven Huis

So the first part was over, that is the fiesta of inauguration and for the second part began, (as the main menu). For first time, the house commissioned for the works of astronomy community in Indonesia; from the meeting of the Astronomy Alumni Union of Indonesia to One Day Seminar of Astronomy.

It would be sensible to say that there is a spark of joy for science in Indonesia; in such a weary situation on social, politic, economy, etc., there is still a place for science. Even though astronomy is merely a tiny subset of large block of science in Indonesia, but who can tell, even one tiny member still contribute something.

So, that is the story about the bazaar, there is a question still remain, will this bazaar is merely another bazaar? When after all the lights go off, will everyone go home and sleep in tiredness, or for some will go out, watch the dark night sky and pondering about something?

The answer will depend on how Kerkhoven Huis will play role in the future, will it just another monument of the past, or will play role as the incubator for future of science in Indonesia?

When Bazaar of Wonders comes into play, remove all cards in all graveyards from the game. Whenever a spell is played, counter it if a card with the same name is in a graveyard or a nontoken permanent with the same name is in play.

The Flags

Desember 19, 2007 Posted by | Astronomy, Culture, Education, Social Activity, Unawe | 2 Komentar

Astronaut Idol

What is the use of space-wonder? Ask ten persons, there would be ten answers. But one thing for sure, the space wonder can plays big role in peace. Surely.

The relationship between two neighbors, Indonesia and Malaysia always in high and low, sometimes like brothers, sometimes so tense because of soo many reasons. But i do not talk about that dispute, instead to show that the eagerness to know the space is far more interesting rather than political (& cultural) dispute and can overcome the differences.

Last saturday, 2007, Dec, 15th, Bosscha Observatory was inaugurating the Faculty House. Among important guest is the Ministry of Research & Technology of Indonesia, and along with him, came the Astronaut from Malaysia.

Minister of Research, The Astronaut & The Crowd
Why astronaut? Since astronaut is a person who has experienced to travel in space, it would be a great moment to share the experiences with younger generation, since a lot of children from elementary schools also invited. Why Malaysia? A Peace conference? (since currently, there are ‘disputes’ between Indonesia & Malaysia) Well, space has no boundaries. So do the children know no boundaries nor politics whatsoever, so they just enjoy the space stories.

So that was, indeed, the astronaut, Dr. Sheikh Muszaphar, play his role, not just the agent of knowledge, sharing his experiences in space; he also play his role as the agent of environment, since he contribute seed of tree for the observatory.

Astronaut with the KidsThe Astronaut IdolThe Astronaut & The Tree

But, what was compelling about his presence, he was the center of the stage! Just like an idol, he attracted everyone during the event. Forget about the event, forget about the space, he might have a better job even if he quit his current job. Believe me, from the time he arrived, he was surrounded, not just by the childrens, but also the teachers, other guests and so on. Forget about speech from the Director of Observatory, everyone asks for his autograph. He was an idol for the day.

The Astronaut & The FansThe Astronaut & The Director

Well, it was a great time with the astronaut, his presence not just as the excitement to meet an idol, but hopefully could inspiring younger generation about the space. Hopefully the spirit from his experience remain in the mind of the next generations.

THe Autograph

Desember 19, 2007 Posted by | Astronomy, Culture, Education, Social Activity | 7 Komentar

Telescopes for Indonesia

Last week end, by random chances i have an opportunity to see the technical preparation of forthcoming 2nd International Olympiad on Astronomy and Astrophysics (IOAA) 2008, which will be held in Bandung, around August 2008. Lucky for me, even so i am not part of the team of telescope for IOAA 2008, but the team were kind enough to give me an opportunity to sneak-peek of what was inside.

Array of Telescopes

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November 19, 2007 Posted by | Astronomy, Culture, Education | 5 Komentar

The First Indonesian’s Star Party & Universe Awareness – The Next Step

The Southern Sky Astronomy Gathering 2007 was conducted on 25th-26th of August in Stasiun Pengamat Dirgantara LAPAN (Pamulihan, Sumedang West Java). It was an event which the first time enabled astronomy goers from all around Indonesia to gather & share experiences on astronomy activities. The purpose of this activity was to give people an opportunity to learn more about astronomy and to raise public enthusiasm.

Many astronomy activities were carried out which catered for a wide range of ages, interests and backgrounds. Hopefully this step will be the beginning of astronomy popularization and awareness in Indonesia. Baca lebih lanjut

November 3, 2007 Posted by | Astronomy, Culture, Nature, Social Activity, Unawe | 3 Komentar