iOS App of Note: NASA HD

[Click to Aggrandize] Screen Shot from NASA App HD for iPad

It’s no surprise that I happen to be a turbo dork for space science. I’ve done reviews on other space apps in the past and written articles about Jupiter, Pluto and Kepler-47’s exoplanets. (All of which are linked to at the bottom of this article, in case you’re interested.) That being said, I am constantly on the look out for amazing spacey-wacey type things. Needless to say that, when I found this NASA App for my iPad, the Dorkometer went in the red.

I love learning about space! I like to stay up-to-date on the Curiosity Rover and find out everything that I can about our solar system, especially Jupiter and Pluto. I am the most fascinated with those two worlds! This app is amazing for keeping up on our solar system! #BobakIsMyHomie

The picture to the left shows you the start screen for the app. The main feature is, of course, the Sun and planets (plus our moon, the ISS and one dwarf planet). You can tap on any of these bodies to learn much more about them. It really doesn’t hold back either! It gives you a wealth of knowledge about the body!  This is great for kids that are interested in space, students that are just starting to learn about our solar system or curious adults that (like me) didn’t pay enough attention in the appropriate class when they were younger because they were too busy undressing an attractive person a few rows up with their brain. #DamnableHormones!

[Click to Embiggenate] Screen Shot of Jupiter Info from NASA App HD for iPad

There’s also a spot to tap that will give you tons of info about the comets and asteroids that are known to zip around this solar system from time-to-time. There is a “Universe” option as well, but it’s an overview entry, which is fine by me. They couldn’t POSSIBLY fit all the info about the entire universe into an app. That’s what browsers are for.

If you look across the bottom of the app (in the picture above or below) you will see options of other things to explore that may be pertinent to your spacial interests. They have up-to-date video and high-res photo tabs that will allow you to watch video updates from the ISS (International Space Station) or catch the most recent photos from the Curiosity Rover that is currently traversing the Martian landscape. #SoRad There’s also a Tweets tab that automatically pulls from a selected group of Twitter accounts so you can see what’s going on in space in real time via Twitter! There’s also a tab called “Featured” that, when opened, seems to be an overview of our solar system. Perfect for the person that is trying to get their kids the pertinent info without weighing them down with all the technical details that you would get from a text book. There are some great images in there (both real pics and artist renderings) that will be sure to impress.

[Click to Enlargify] Screen Shot from NASA App HD for iPad of the Home Screen with the “Satellites” tab pulled down

A real selling point, to this nerd, is the option to learn about all the satellites that we have wandering around out there. I want to focus on three of them that I am most interested in, Mars Science Lab; Curiosity, Juno and New Horizons.

You can tap the tab open and all 82 of the satellites are arranged in alphabetical order. As you can see from the photo to the right, New Horizons is what I plan to learn about. So I tap on the New Horizons picture and it pulls up an info screen (shown below) that gives you the launch date, a timer showing  a real time counter of how many seconds, hours, days, months and years the satellite has been off the ground! Below that is a box that show the satellites current Twitter feed (yes; I’m following) and more news, videos and photos related to the mission. In case you may be wondering why I happen to be particularly interested in New Horizons, it left Earth January 19, 2006 (over 6 years and 9 months ago, at the time of this article’s posting) and is set to arrive at Pluto in 2015. This will be the first mission out to the Kuiper Belt and should provide us with a GREAT deal of info about the icy dwarf planets that inhabit the area. I kind of have a thing for Pluto and Charon (Pluto’s Largest Moon). I’ll throw a little song about Pluto and Charon in at the end of the post.

[Click for Amplificatitude] Screen Shot of the New Horizons info page from NASA App HD for iPad

I have a total of five space related apps for my iPad, and I rank this one at the top, depending on the needs of the moment. This app is VERY informative and gets as in-depth as you want it to get. Sometimes I like to look at the planets with their moons in orbit around them and for that I use Solar Walk 3D. I would say this app would be tied with Solar Walk for the top spot. This app does have one great advantage over Solar Walk 3D, however, and that’s the cost. If I remember correctly, Solar Walk was $4.99, and worth EVERY PENNY! The NASA App is, however, absolutely free of charge. You can’t argue with free! This app is available on your iPad, iPhone or iPod Touch, as well as Android Devices, so grab it up!

Before I get to that song that I promised you, links to other articles on my blog that you may enjoy and the necessary advertisement for this piece, I want to ask you a question… What are some of your favorite apps? Feel free to leave your comments/suggestions/questions in the comments section below and don’t forget to “Like”, “Tweet” or Share this post wherever you like to share things that you like (there’s a few buttons at the bottom to help with that). Should you be interested in more stuff like this, you can always subscribe to my RSS Feed, Follow me on Twitter or add me to your Circles on Google+!

Other Space Related Posts | Other iOS App Reviews



About Alloy Matt

Happy Husband | Beardsman | Blogger | Dreamer | Wholigan | Drinker of Coffees | Tweeter of Hashtags | Gamer of Table Tops | Amature Astronomer | Fanboy of Apple

Posted on November 17, 2012, in Apple, Geek, iOS Apps, iPad, iPhone, Nerd, Reviews, Science, Space and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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