FAQAstropro Frequently Asked Questions
last updated NOV 25, 2007

Enter Astropro!Herewith, answers to questions about astrology, astroglyphs (astrological symbols), astrological education and certification, geographic coordinates, the Moon's nodes, Blue Moons, SuperMoon, browsers, the QuickTime browser plug-in, audio, bookmarking Astropro, linking to Astropro, astrological charts and reports, interactive JavaScript issues, AOL, Macintosh Astropros & cons and more:



Q. What is meant by the message on the entry page, "auto optimized for 4X-7X Microsoft & Netscape browsers"?

A. It means that in order to experience all of Astropro's features, you’ll need an up to date computer with a functioning sound system, equipped with one of these browsers (or something else that's fully compatible): Internet Explorer from Microsoft (version 4X-7X) or Navigator (version 4X-7X) or Communicator (version 4X-7X) from Netscape - preferably the latest release, with sound, images, Java and JavaScript enabled in any case. Anything less isn’t really roadworthy for the information superhighway of today anyway.

You can download your choice of these browsers free by clicking on the appropriate icon from the Astropro entry.

Lesser browsers are unable to handle many of Astropro’s features, including font specifications, tables, audio signatures upon loading, JavaScripts, etc. If you don’t see a message running across the status bar at the bottom of your browser’s screen now, you’re at least partially JavaScript-impaired for one reason or another. (It's either that, or you have turned off your status bar altogether - check your browser options.)



Q. Your site doesn’t look right with my AOL browser. What’s the problem, and what’s the fix?

A. The problem is your AOLful browser, and the fix is to ditch the obsolete thing. AOL provides its users with an archaic browser that's more or less hobbled in comparison to those used in the outside world. It's sad but true: no one going at it with a standard AOL browser has any idea what the World Wide Web is really like. (Now you know why the cognoscenti characterize AOL as "Almost On Line".) Now that AOL owns Netscape, you'd think they'd give their customers a decent browser. But if they did that, then those users would quickly discover that AOL offers them nothing as good as they can find elsewhere on the Web. Meanwhile, if you’re running Windows 95 or higher, try minimizing your AOL/Compuserve browser, and then click on your desktop Netscape Navigator or Microsoft Internet Explorer - preferably 4X-7X in either case. Using either of these as a standalone browser, you should be fine. Don’t have one? Get it free from the link at the Astropro entry. If you’re running Windows 3.1X, you’ll have to use a standalone browser and do away with AOL’s claptrap contraption altogether in order to get this - or any other decent site on the Net - right. Some JavaScript features are not supported by Windows 3.1X in any case. It’s upgrade time! Most of Astropro’s JavaScript-specific features are written so as to be transparent to JavaScript-impaired browsers. So if you fall in that category, at least you shouldn’t crash when you visit this site. But you won’t know what you’re missing, either. (See interactive JavaScript issues for more on Windows 3.1X issues.)



Q. Astropro either crashes my Netscape-equipped Macintosh altogether, or gives me the runaround with "unknown file type" or JavaScript error messages. What's the problem, and what's the fix?

A. As far as I can determine based on feedback from my Maccie friends, the problem is that Netscape has done a lousy implementation of their browser for the Macintosh - at least as far as Netscape's own LiveAudio and/or LiveConnect JavaScript controls for LiveAudio are concerned. While there may be tricks that can get around this, the only solution Maccies have reported to me is to get the Mac version of Microsoft's Internet Explorer: it works fine with Astropro and anything else you can throw at it, they tell me. You can download the latest version of Internet Explorer free by clicking on the Internet Explorer icon at the Astropro entry.



Q. What's all this JavaScript stuff?

A. Astropro uses a fair amount of JavaScript: for example the status bar messages, various interactive features, even the back button on the home page. To experience these, you'll need to turn on the Java and JavaScript functions in your browser. Failure to do so at best means you're out of the loop. You can't visit any decent site on the World Wide Web today without these functions enabled anyway. Enabling them is simple: consult your browser's documentation for instructions.

For example, with Netscape's Navigator 3.x browser, click on Options, then Network Preferences, then Languages: then be sure there's a check-mark beside both "Enable Java" and "Enable JavaScript". Then click OK. While you're at it, make sure your memory cache is set to 2048 kb or higher.

With Netscape's Communicator or Navigator 4X-7X browser, click on Edit, then Preferences, then Advanced: then be sure "Enable Java" and "Enable JavaScript" are both checked. Then click OK. While you're at it, be sure that the LiveAudio is enabled to handle audio files of the type audio/x-wav and audio/wav, and that your memory cache is set to 2048 kb or higher!

ALL Netscape browsers: DO NOT install the QuickTime 3 plug-in for Windows! It is incompatible with Netscape's LiveConnect JavaScript, and produces terribly tinny sound. (QuickTime 2 works fine.) For details, see the QuickTime browser plug-in FAQ.

Microsoft Internet Explorer 4 seems to have all the Right Stuff enabled by default. Just to be sure, users of this browser might want to click View, then Internet Options, then Security, then Custom, then Settings; then scroll down to "Scripting" and click on "Enable"; then click OK, and click OK again. And do be sure you have enabled the audio option! (Failure to do so can result in spurious JavaScript errors, since the required audio files must be enabled for the JavaScript to work.) You may as well go ahead and set your memory cache to 2048 kb or higher while you're at it. The procedure for Internet Explorer 5 is identical, except that you access Internet Options by clicking on Tools instead of View.



Q. I just installed QuickTime 3 for Windows, and now I get error messages when visiting Astropro with my Netscape browser. What's the fix?

A. While it works fine with Microsoft's Internet Explorer, the Windows version of QuickTime 3 is incompatible with Netscape's LiveConnect JavaScript code - which is used on the Astropro home page. This generates false JavaScript errors when visiting Astropro with this plug-in enabled. QuickTime 3 also produces inferior audio quality on a Netscape browser, even when the LiveConnect code isn't an issue. The fix is to first remove QuickTime 3, then install (or reinstall) QuickTime 2. If you also have Internet Explorer on your machine, you may then reinstall QuickTime 3 being careful to select ONLY the Internet Explorer plug-in option. This will give you the best of both worlds. Or, if you just can't live without it for whatever reason, you could always reinstall QuickTime 3 and select NO browser plug-ins.



Q. I can’t hear the ‘audio signatures’. Why not?

A. Assuming that Astropro's audio server isn't down and that you have a functional sound system - i.e. your computer produces sounds off the Net, and you can hear audio from the few other websites incorporating that feature - I really don’t know the answer to this one. (Actually, in mid-April '98 all audio files were moved to the main server, and most Astropro pages were re-written to use the new audio file locations.) But let's see what we can do . . . For starters, click here to check for audio. If a little audio player window opens and you hear the "ta-da!", then Astropro's audio server is working and your browser is properly audio-enabled. (Once the audio file finishes playing, you may as well close the audio player window.) Just about any other problem or error message most likely indicates that your browser isn't properly receiving audio files . . . so let's see what we can figure out!

Astropro uses .WAV-format audio files, which are supported by Internet Explorer’s (4X-7X versions) ActiveX ActiveMovie feature; on the Netscape side (4X-7X) they’re supported by the LiveAudio plug-in. IE4 users do need to be sure the "Play Sounds" option is enabled: click View, then Internet Options, then Advanced, then click the box next to "Play Sounds" if it doesn't already have a check-mark; then click OK. (The procedure for IE5 is identical, except that you access Internet Options by clicking on Tools instead of View.) If you’re running a Netscape browser, check to make sure that LiveAudio is properly enabled. You can do this from your browser by clicking on Help, then About Plug-ins, and then scrolling down to the LiveAudio section. If you see "Yes" in the "Enabled" column for audio/x-wav and audio/wav files, then your LiveAudio is properly set up. Otherwise, you'll need to set it up properly (which is the way it came from Netscape): consult your browser documentation.

The only other possibility that comes to mind is that you aren't allowing audio files to open - see below - which can also cause spurious JavaScript error messages. Lots of newbies have their browsers set in the most timid fashion imaginable, so that they won't let audio files open. If your computer 'warns' of an unknown file type and asks if you want to open the file, save it to disk, etc. - well, that's a typical newbie setting. Tell it to open the file, and check the option that says something like 'don't ask again for this type of file.' Allowing audio files to open is more than half the battle. The rest lies in letting the page finish loading before mousing over the control buttons. Those buttons are scripted with calls to audio files. If the audio files either aren't allowed to open at all, or haven't finished loading before you mouse over the buttons, then the audio files which are JavaScript objects aren't present. This produces 'JavaScript has no object' error messages. Be patient, let the page finish loading - please! (Thank you, thank you very much.)

If after following the above instructions appropriate to your browser you still can't hear the audio at Astropro, or if you're getting spurious JavaScript error messages upon loading . . . well then, let me know what you’re running and I’ll see if I can help.

Please note that interactive audio features do require 4X-7X versions of the Microsoft or Netscape browser with Java and JavaScript enabled. Lesser browsers will still be able to get the audio signature upon loading a page, but they won’t be able to handle the interactive audio. A major caveat here is the platform you're running your browser on, since some OS/hardware setups are JavaScript-impaired.

Q. How come I get a message asking what to do with this type of file when entering your website? My computer asks if I want to open the file, save it to disk, or what.

A. You’re being prompted what to do with the audio file. Tell your computer to go ahead and open it - it’s a harmless .WAV sound file - and tell it not to ask again for this type of file. If you don't do this, you WILL get spurious JavaScript errors since you aren't allowing the audio files to open. These files are JavaScript objects for Astropro's interactive audio features, and so if they aren't present the JavaScript can't work properly. Once you permit the audio files to open, be sure to let the page finish loading before mousing over the control buttons on the page. Those buttons are interactively scripted such that various audio files are JavaScript functions attached to the buttons. If the audio files haven't finished loading and you mouse over a button, you WILL get a JavaScript error message. However once the audio files are loaded, no error messages will be generated on a mouse-over. So please, let the page load - thanks!



Q. How do I get hard copy of the astrological charts I see on this website?

A. The only real trick here is setting your page margins and turning off the headers and footers options. This is accomplished from your browser's page setup feature. Page margins should be set at 0 (zero) all around, which allows the chart itself to dictage pagination. (For example, in Netscape Navigator, click on File, then Page Setup, then make sure all margins are set to zero and no checkmarks appear in any of the header and footer boxes.) Once the margins are properly set, follow your browser's normal printing procedure. (Please note: failure to properly set page margins will cause a chart to occupy more than a single page.)

Q. How can I save any of the astrological charts I see on this website?

A. First you need to select the chart you want, then simply follow your browser's procedure for saving the chart to your own computer's hard drive. For example, most browsers allow you to select an image by clicking on it. From there, select the save file option on your browser's command menu and specify the directory and/or file name you want to use for saving the chart. Netscape Navigator has a nifty shortcut: click on the image with your right mouse key and then just follow the prompts you see on screen.

Q. When you send me a horoscope via e-mail, it arrives as a garbled attachment or I can't see it at all. What's wrong with this picture?

A. First, stay calm. I've had reports from several clients who tell me that their mail program does a great job of mangling graphic files sent as attachments, or 'losing' them altogether. Second, read the entire cover note that arrived with your chart, which addresses this very issue and provides an immediate solution. As the note explains, I have anticipated such a problem - hey, it's my job. Therefore I have provided for you a copy of your chart on the Web, which you can view by clicking on the link I put into your letter. From there it's simply a matter of following the normal procedures for saving and/or printing a chart. (See the e-mail instructions provided with the chart, or consult the FAQ on these topics.) Third, if you're using Eudora Light, you might try using your browser - not Eudora itself - to open the Eudora\Attach directory and look for all files therein. If you see a .gif file that matches the name of the chart file referred to in my letter, then you have found your chart after all. (Eudora Light can't show it to you directly the way Netscape Navigator Mail does, but it's there.) Open that file with your browser, and you're looking at your chart - which can then be printed following the normal procedure outlined in the FAQ on that subject. Please note that even with Netscape Navigator Mail, it's a good idea to select the "view attachments as links" rather than "view attachments inline" option. This makes it easier to print anything you receive as an attachment. Otherwise the e-mail and the attachment are treated as a single document - which can really screw up the pagination.



Q. Help! The report you sent me via e-mail came in as an attachment to your cover letter. While I could read the letter, I can't see the report at all. What happened, and what's the fix?

A. You're using Eudora Light, right? Well, exit the thing and fire up your browser. Use the browser to open the Eudora\Attach directory and look for all files therein. If you see a .txt file with your name on it, that's your report. Open that file with your browser, and you're reading the report - which can then be printed following the instructions contained in the cover letter to your report.



Q. What's a SuperMoon?

A. SuperMoon is a word I coined in a 1979 article for Dell Publishing Company's HOROSCOPE magazine. It's a new or full moon which coincides with the Moon's closest approach to Earth. The astronomical term is perigee-syzygy - perigee meaning closest to Earth, syzygy meaning an alignment of Sun, Moon and Earth. Say perigee-syzygy fast a couple of times, and you'll instantly recognize why I came up with SuperMoon. See the 20th Century SuperMoon TABLE for a listing of these alignments.


Q. I want to study astrology. Is there some course you'd care to recommend?

A. Check under the Education heading in the General Astrology section of Astropro's NetSelect Directory. The FAS course is well-recognized. I'm not endorsing any institution or organization, mind you. The best astrologers are all self-taught anyway. At least that's been my own experience, and years ago Noel Tyl voiced the same sentiment to me. (I imagine some of the worst astrologers are self-taught too, in all fairness.)

Ultimately, one learns astrology by doing it - calculating and 'reading' charts. We learn the basics only in order to forget them. Astrology proceeds by analysis and accretion (of symbols, rules etc.) only in the initial learning phase. Once something in the way of a ‘critical mass’ is attained, it proceeds instead by intuition. When asked to explain a specific intuition, the astrologer at this stage typically ‘reverse engineers’ a rationalization that relies on symbolic analysis as a frame of reference for the querent’s benefit. However that reverse process is of its nature misleading - as rationalizations always are. Which is why the only way to teach astrology is to transmit the symbols in order that the student may incorporate them to the point of being able to do away with them. Anyone who knows a koan from a quartile recognizes this, and knows that intuition cannot be rationally dissected. Anyone who doesn’t cannot . . . for the time being.

First there is a mountain,
then there is no mountain,
then there is.

(No, that is not - as some clueless character in an astrological newsgroup once opined - a line from a Donovan song. It is an ancient teaching from Zen and the Tao.)


Q. I know some astrology, but trying to read your articles is somewhat difficult because you go into detail about things that a novice astrologer won't understand. What is a good website to study up on astrology?

A. Yes, I do. While that may seem challenging at first, it's the reason my regulars keep coming back. Maybe you'll become a regular too.

Some of the astrological websites I find most interesting include (alphabetical order only): Nick Campion's Online Astrology Resource, Ken Gillman's Considerations, Bill Herbst's astrology website, April Elliott Kent's Big Sky Astrology, the archives at Matrix Software's Astro*Talk online astrology magazine, Mark McDonough's Astro DataBank, Michael Meyer's CyberWorld Khaldea, StarIQ, and Noel Tyl's site . . . I know there are others, but I can't think of them just now. You might want to check the WOW Archives for more.


Q. How does one become a certified astrologer? Is there an exam?

A. You betcha there's an exam. They're offered by some of the better known national and international astrological organizations, such as the American Federation of Astrologers (AFA) and the National Council for Geocosmic Research (NCGR). For details, contact them: see the Associations heading in the General Astrology section of Astropro's NetSelect Directory.


Q. How can I find the geographic coordinates (latitude and longitude) of a particular location (city etc.)?

A. Decent astrological software includes automatic look-up for both geographic coordinates and time standards. You can also get this information free online. See the "Latitude/Longitude & Time Standards" heading in the Astrology Reference section of Astropro's NetSelect Directory.


Q. What's a north node, and why is it all over the place instead of at the top of the chart?

A. Nodes are points of intersection between two different coordinate systems. Most commonly, this term refers to the nodes of the Moon - the north node in particular. This is the point in space where the Moon crosses the ecliptic (the path of Earth's orbit around the Sun) from south to north. Its opposite point, the south lunar node, is the point where the Moon crosses the ecliptic from north to south. The lunar nodes are almost universally regarded among astrologers as important. (Eclipses always occur at or fairly near one of the lunar nodes.) Like the Sun, Moon, the planets or the signs, the Moon's node can be in any house in a particular horoscope; and in fact it will go through all twelve houses in a day just like any of these other cosmic points. I see the nodes as points of connection in a chart: they show how we fit into our social and cultural milieu, how it impacts on us . . . not unlike the Vedic view that the nodes are 'karmic' indicators. (I see karma as indicated by everything in the chart however - not just the nodes.) For a 3000-year table of lunar north node sign ingresses, see my TABLE.


Q. What's a Blue Moon, and how often does it occur?

A. There's more to that question than can be answered briefly here. See the Astropro Blue Moon center for more.


Q. Where can I find a guide to those strange symbols I see in an astrological chart?

A. In need of an astrological Rosetta Stone, are you? If you ordered a horoscope from me you already have a symbols guide, because it's on the chart I sent you by mail, fax or email. (You also get your natal horoscope free when you order a personal report.) If you got your chart elsewhere and didn't get a symbols guide with it - tsk, tsk - then what you need is my free online Astroglyphs: An Astrological Symbols Guide.



Q. Which is the right URL to use when linking to Astropro's home page?

A. Please link ONLY to http://www.astropro.com (or more specifically, http://www.astropro.com/index.html) - not to any of the alternate home pages, which are either optimized for Generation 4X-7X Microscoft and Netscape browsers or downtuned for lesser browsers.

This is because http://www.astropro.com/index.html is an automatic (JavaScript) gateway, which detects the user’s browser and directs it to either the appropriately optimized home page or to one of the downtuned home pages. Linking to any but the ‘gateway’ page bypasses this automatic function. The result is that users are sent to a page which is below or beyond their browser’s capabilities. Below their capabilities means they can’t see or hear various interactive functions they otherwise could. Beyond their capabilities means they could get needless JavaScript error messages - or an outright browser crash.

Although the automatic gateway at http://www.astropro.com is nominally of the "enter only" variety, anyone following a link from your site to that gateway can still easily return to YOUR site by hitting the "back" button on the Astropro home page. It's written with a JavaScript "history.go(-x)" function that jumps past the gateway back to your site. However this feature will not be supported by JavaScript-impaired browsers. Which is why visitors who don't have JavaScript browsers are routed to the alternate generic home page, which doesn't have a back button on it. In that case, they can return to your home page with a double or even triple click (depending on the person's reaction time) on their browser's back button. If you're concerned about that, you can always code your link as follows:

<A HREF="http://www.astropro.com/index.html" TARGET="_new">

This opens Astropro in a new browser window when a visitor from your site clicks on the link. When they're done exploring Astropro, they can close that window and be right back where they left off at your site.

You might even like using that TARGET="_new" parameter at the end of EVERY link, just to take advantage of the 'open new window' feature. This way, nobody ever loses track of YOUR site while following your links. If your HTML editor won't allow you to code links this way, you can always open your links page in a text editor, copy the above code, and paste it where you want the Astropro link to appear; then save the page again and publish it. (If this is your first hand-coding experience, welcome to the real world of HTML! And DO try your first hand-coding experiment with an alternate version of your links page, so that if you don't get it right the first time it won't mess up your working page.)



Q. Which is the right URL to use when bookmarking Astropro, or adding it to my "Favorites" file?

A. Please bookmark ONLY the Astropro entry - http://www.astropro.com/ (or more specifically, http://www.astropro.com/index.html) - rather than any of the (currently) seven different home pages accessible from the entry. The reason for this is that Astropro's entry is an automatic (JavaScript) gateway, which detects the user's browser and directs it to either the appropriately optimized home page or to one of the downtuned home pages. Because Astropro is constantly evolving, bookmarking anything but the entry will bypass this automatic adjustment. This can result in your being on the wrong home page! (Just because the home page you saw today was appropriate for your browser at the time doesn't mean it will still be appropriate at some point in the future.)

Don't know how to bookmark anything in the first place? Consult your browser's help files. If you're running a fairly recent Microsoft or Netscape browser, a shortcut to bookmark a page - or add it to your "Favorites" file, as the case may be - is to go to the page, then hold down on the "Control" (CTRL) key as you tap the "D" key.


Q. Got a question?

A. Let me know and you'll get an answer.

Enter Astropro! Richard Nolle, Certified Professional Astrologer
consultations/orders (AmEx/Discover/MasterCard/Visa) 800-527-8761
phone/fax 480-753-6261 - email rnolle@astropro.com
Box 26599 - Tempe, AZ 85285-6599 - USA
on the World Wide Web at http://www.astropro.com

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