Stardust Index How-To

Hints, tips, and information

Manual Search
Article Titles
Page numbering
Tables of Contents
How this index was created
What is NOT indexed


Names of Authors

    • For any given author, you may see several versions of their name. See next point.
    • The names of authors are very inconsistent, sometimes even within the same issue. Dr. Douglas Hube, for example, is cited as:

Dr. Douglas P. Hube
Dr. Douglas Hube
Dr. D.P. Hube
Doug Hube
D. Hube…

  • You could find every article by Dr. Hube in a single Manual Search (see below) for “Hube”, although such a search will also return other results, such as articles in which he is mentioned.

Multiple Authors

  • Articles with multiple authors are indexed by the last listed author’s last name.
  • This accounts for strange entries in the Authors list like:
    • “Chrapko, David Parker and Bryan”
  • That is, “David Parker and Bryan Chrapko”
  • Yes, this is rather clumsy, and will be cleaned up, eventually.

Unidentified Authors

  • A huge number of articles are uncredited, especially in the early years; there is no indication of authorship at all. Many entire issues cite no authors, not even initials.
  • In the absence of evidence to the contrary, one can only credit the editor of that issue.
  • Authors are sometimes only indicated by initials, and in a few cases, the full name is unknown or uncertain; that is why “uncredited” appears as an author, and why you see some initials.
  • “D.H.” for example, might be Dr. Douglas Hube, however, every article by “D.H.” is about aurorae, while none of the articles attributed to Dr. Hube are about aurorae.

Article Titles

Untitled articles

  • Numerous articles, especially in the early days, had no title.
  • The end of an article might be apparent because the author’s name or initials appear on a single line.
  • The start of a new article might be apparent only because the end of the previous article is obvious.
  • Many untitled articles also have no author, so the transition to a new article is only apparent by a change of subject.
  • The associated Keywords (see above) are the only indication of subject and contents.

Regular Features

    • Titles of regular features are very changeable.
    • Like today, the president often contributed a short piece. It may be called any one of the following:

President’s Report
[The] President’s Message
President’s Memo
The President’s Column
Report from the President…

  • As with names of authors, you could find all of them with a single Manual Search (see below) for “President”, although that may match other things as well, e.g., articles about any president of anything, as well as things like “presidential”.

Page Numbering

  • Page numbers are not given for articles, because
    • The pages are not numbered in many issues.
    • Few issues exceed 10 pages; finding an article within an issue is not particularly difficult.

Tables of Contents

  • The “Table of Contents” for any issue is simply a list of article titles that match a certain date.
  • The search results include a link to that issue.
  • A Manual Search (see below) for, e.g., “196305” will give you the same results as looking up May 1963 in the Tables of Contents drop-down list, although a link to the issue will not be included.

Manual Search

  • This search matches anything: authors, titles, keywords, dates.
  • Searches are not CaSe SeNsItIvE: “President” and “president” will return the same results.
  • Search for the broadest terms to get the most matches.
  • Examples:
    • “supernovae” will only match “supernovae”
    • “nova” will match “supernovae”, “supernova”, “novae”, and “nova”
    • “smith” or “Smith” will match all instances of the name, regardless of first initials, name, title, etc., and regardless of which field “Smith” occurs in (author, title, keywords).

How this index was created

  • The index itself consists of a single plain text CSV file.
  • Each line (record) has four fields:
    • Author – where known, usually cited as it appears; sometimes edited for clarity
    • Title – where given, cited as it appears; sometimes edited for brevity
    • Keywords – a few words to indicate what the article is about; sometimes the subject is not at all clear from the title; sometimes the title carries enough information that keywords are minimal
    • Issue – a simple six-digit code, for year + month: YYYYMM
  • Here are a few lines of the CSV file, from January 1957:
Dave Marvin,Aurora Division,Aurora Borealis;northern lights,195701
Franklin Loehde,Solar Division,solar observing;sun spots,195701
Earl Milton,Nova Search Division,supernovae,195701

What is NOT indexed

  • There are numerous notices, some quite lengthy, concerning matters like births, weddings, picnics, trips, parties, meeting dates and times, etc.
  • Obituaries are indexed; do a Manual Search (see above) for the person’s last name.