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starconvert(1)		    General Commands Manual		starconvert(1)

       starconvert - convert text data files to	StarPlot format

       starconvert [ options ] spec-file input-file [ output-file ]

       Although	many stellar data files	are publicly available on the Internet
       from NASA and other astronomical	organizations, there is	no set	format
       for these files.	 The program starconvert acts as a buffer between this
       confusion and the format	in which StarPlot requires data	files.	To  do
       so,  it	uses  a	 specification file that details how various fields of
       stellar data (name, distance, right ascension, etc.) may	 be  extracted
       from the	original data file.

       On  the	StarPlot web site are available	some packages of data that in-
       clude both an original data file	from NASA, and also  a	 specification
       file.   These packages are referred to as "data sets", from which star-
       convert can produce a data file in StarPlot format.  For	ease  of  use,
       this should be done via the starpkg(1) shell script.

       The starconvert command uses the	specifications in spec-file to convert
       input-file to StarPlot data format  and	writes	the  results  to  out-
       put-file	 if specified, or standard output if not.  The first two argu-
       ments are required.  Exactly ONE	may be replaced	with a	dash  `-'  for
       reading from standard input.

       --     Signals  the  end	 of  the  options.   This  allows you to use a
	      spec-file	whose filename begins with the '-' character.

	      Add an entry for the Sun to the generated	 StarPlot-format  data
	      file,  if	 it  is	 not  already present in the original raw data
	      file.  This is the default behavior, so this flag	has an	effect
	      only if it reverses an earlier --no-add-sun flag.

	      Do not add an entry for the Sun to the generated StarPlot-format
	      data file, unless	it is present in the original raw  data	 file.
	      Adding  the  Sun	is  otherwise done by default, since most star
	      catalogs do not include it.

       For detailed information	on how to write	a specification	file, see  the
       example	file  listed  below.  Be aware that I expect to	change the de-
       fault format of starconvert spec	 files	after  version	1.0,  although
       starconvert will	remain backwards-compatible.

       /usr/local/share/doc/starplot/ -	Contains documentation
       /usr/local/share/doc/starplot/examples/example.spec  - Example specifi-
       cation file

       starplot(1), starpkg(1)

       Copyright  (C)  2000-2002  under	 the  GNU  GPL	by  Kevin  B.  McCarty
       _starplot@starplot.org_.	 The StarPlot web page is at

				   Nov 2002			starconvert(1)


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