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An interesting experience with the International Star Registry while doing a nice thing for my family

24 Jan

I have a certain aspect of my personality that wakes up at the opportunity to doing fun and rewarding for my family. So, when I saw the International Start Registry Living Social offer I bought four…one for me, my wife and two for my boys. A cool Xmas gift.

star_livingsocial

It was advertised as follows.

Catch the twinkle in their eyes as they look to the skies with this deal from the International Star Registry: Give the gift of a personalized star for $20 (a $65 value). Lucky recipients can join the ranks of celebrities, dignitaries, and even royalty who have their own celestial sparklers.

  • Each star comes with a 16″ x 12″ full-color parchment certificate, personalized with the star’s name, date, and coordinates
  • Create a cluster of stars for the whole family in the same constellation, or make personalized corporate gifts
  • Identification is easy with a custom 16″ x 12″ sky chart that features the star’s name, date, constellation, and location circled in red
  • A booklet on astronomy written by a professional astronomer includes additional sky charts
  • Celebrate the moment with a letter of congratulations/memorial for the recipient
  • The new star name will be published in book form for registration in the US Copyright Office

Based on what I see 31,157 were purchased

numberI chose to put our stars all close to Perseus so that we could be clustered as a family. And here we all are…slices of our own individual star maps overlaid for comparison.

allstars

On each section I have marked our individual stars. There are large stars and small stars then the ones flagged as ours. So here is my question….why do we not see each others stars on each others maps? Are these stars actually fictitious and simply inserted on the star map for effect?

A quick search online and I found this….

“The outfits that “sell” the right to name a star are out and out frauds.  The fact that there are several “selling” these rights should tell you something.  They don’t coordinate with one another, so two companies could sell the same star.”

WONDERFUL! I am scientist and got caught up with the fun for my family, allowed myself to be scammed as did 31,000 other people…There are days when I am a fool….shame on me, shame on LivingSocial and shame on the International Star Registry. HAH!

 

About tony

Antony (Tony) J. Williams received his BSc in 1985 from the University of Liverpool (UK) and PhD in 1988 from the University of London (UK). His PhD research interests were in studying the effects of high pressure on molecular motions within lubricant related systems using Nuclear Magnetic Resonance. He moved to Ottawa, Canada to work for the National Research Council performing fundamental research on the electron paramagnetic resonance of radicals trapped in single crystals. Following his postdoctoral position he became the NMR Facility Manager for Ottawa University. Tony joined the Eastman Kodak Company in Rochester, New York as their NMR Technology Leader. He led the laboratory to develop quality control across multiple spectroscopy labs and helped establish walk-up laboratories providing NMR, LC-MS and other forms of spectroscopy to hundreds of chemists across multiple sites. This included the delivery of spectroscopic data to the desktop, automated processing and his initial interests in computer-assisted structure elucidation (CASE) systems. He also worked with a team to develop the worlds’ first web-based LIMS system, WIMS, capable of allowing chemical structure searching and spectral display. With his developing cheminformatic skills and passion for data management he left corporate America to join a small start-up company working out of Toronto, Canada. He joined ACD/Labs as their NMR Product Manager and various roles, including Chief Science Officer, during his 10 years with the company. His responsibilities included managing over 50 products at one time prior to developing a product management team, managing sales, marketing, technical support and technical services. ACD/Labs was one of Canada’s Fast 50 Tech Companies, and Forbes Fast 500 companies in 2001. His primary passions during his tenure with ACD/Labs was the continued adoption of web-based technologies and developing automated structure verification and elucidation platforms. While at ACD/Labs he suggested the possibility of developing a public resource for chemists attempting to integrate internet available chemical data. He finally pursued this vision with some close friends as a hobby project in the evenings and the result was the ChemSpider database (www.chemspider.com). Even while running out of a basement on hand built servers the website developed a large community following that eventually culminated in the acquisition of the website by the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) based in Cambridge, United Kingdom. Tony joined the organization, together with some of the other ChemSpider team, and became their Vice President of Strategic Development. At RSC he continued to develop cheminformatics tools, specifically ChemSpider, and was the technical lead for the chemistry aspects of the Open PHACTS project (http://www.openphacts.org), a project focused on the delivery of open data, open source and open systems to support the pharmaceutical sciences. He was also the technical lead for the UK National Chemical Database Service (http://cds.rsc.org/) and the RSC lead for the PharmaSea project (http://www.pharma-sea.eu/) attempting to identify novel natural products from the ocean. He left RSC in 2015 to become a Computational Chemist in the National Center of Computational Toxicology at the Environmental Protection Agency where he is bringing his skills to bear working with a team on the delivery of a new software architecture for the management and delivery of data, algorithms and visualization tools. The “Chemistry Dashboard” was released on April 1st, no fooling, at https://comptox.epa.gov, and provides access to over 700,000 chemicals, experimental and predicted properties and a developing link network to support the environmental sciences. Tony remains passionate about computer-assisted structure elucidation and verification approaches and continues to publish in this area. He is also passionate about teaching scientists to benefit from the developing array of social networking tools for scientists and is known as the ChemConnector on the networks. Over the years he has had adjunct roles at a number of institutions and presently enjoys working with scientists at both UNC Chapel Hill and NC State University. He is widely published with over 200 papers and book chapters and was the recipient of the Jim Gray Award for eScience in 2012. In 2016 he was awarded the North Carolina ACS Distinguished Speaker Award.
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Posted by on January 24, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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