Powerful and Customizable Yet So Easy to Use
Solar Fire 7’s greatly expanded Chart-File Search makes it easy to investigate how astrological concepts actually work out in practice. With it, you can quickly pull out the charts in your files that have whatever astrological factors you want to investigate, and then judge whether the natives have the traits or life events that you would expect. Besides using it on the horoscopes of people you know, you can use it on the 800 timed, carefully sourced and commented celebrity charts that are included free with Solar Fire. And since Solar Fire’s chart-file format is so universally recognized, you can also use it on most outside databases and charts generated by other programs. (These include the Solar Fire-format Contemporary, Historical and sports chart collections available from Astrolabe.)
The Chart Search offers a truly huge array of criteria, and you can search for these either singly, or together in all kinds of “And/Or/Not” combinations. Available criteria range from a simple planet, asteroid, hypothetical body or house cusp in a given sign, on up to any of 25 multi-planet aspect patterns (t-squares, grand trines, yods, heles, rosettas, Thor’s Hammers, grand quintiles and more). You can search for things like two points in a given phase relationship, a point in aspect to any given zodiacal position, or a point at, above or below a given longitude, latitude, right ascension, declination, azimuth, altitude or speed. There’s also a whole range of classical criteria -- 7 types of horary consideration, and not only points having a specific dignity, ruler or almuten, but also the ruler, almuten, antiscion or contra-antiscion of a point being a certain planet or being in a certain dignity. Conversely, you can search the chart comments for given words or phrases to find whether people who have similar life themes have astrological similarities. Also, anyone who wants to find the astro twins in a number of different chart files can search for all charts that fall within a given range of birthdates. And professionals can search their client base on the useful “days to birthday” criterion to find individuals who are due for a solar return or yearly update.
The Time or Electional Search works in a similar way, searching any time period that you specify for all of the same criteria except the birth data and comments. The Time Search makes it easy to find time periods that meet the electional criteria that you want for starting a project auspiciously. It is also a powerful aid in mundane and financial astrology, enabling you to quickly locate periods in history that have a given combination of astrological conditions.
• All Kinds of Wheels. Solar Fire comes with dozens of attractive wheel and dial designs that can hold from one to four charts. Wheels can also have extra-points rings where you can display any mixture of extra asteroids, fixed stars, midpoints, Arabic parts, prenatal eclipses or lunar phases, and any fixed sensitive points that you wish to enter. You can have American, Euro, color-wash and other wheels of all sorts with equally spaced or proportional house cusps, with or without aspect lines. In addition, you can select your own colors for individual planets, signs, aspects and the wheel itself.
In case you can’t find the exact wheel or dial that you want, Solar Fire has an ingenious Wheel and Dial Designer Window that enables you to modify the pre-existing wheels or create entirely new ones.
• Beautifully Formatted Graphic Pages and Screens. Besides wheels, there are triangular, square and synastry aspectarian grids. Solar Fire also provides over 70 formatted page designs that can pack all the information you need neatly on one page. Included are designs specifically for beginners, synastry, classical, horary, Cosmobiology, esoteric, Vedic, Huber, fixed star, asteroid and other uses. To make selecting from all these possibilities easier, there’s a user-adjustable directory tree of available pages. You can quickly change to another page design by right-clicking on the currently displayed page or wheel, and in Solar Fire 7 you can even edit a page while it is being used on the screen.
To enable you to create or modify your own pages, Solar Fire has an ingenious Page Designer Window. This provides dozens of tables, graphics and captions (even boxes for your own labels and comments) that you can resize and arrange on the page with or without chart wheels. “Flexible List” tables multiply your possibilities even further, enabling you to choose from many possible types of information, to arrange the columns as you wish, and to sort the rows alphabetically or numerically according to any given column’s information. For both regular and extra bodies, flexible lists can include info such as the body’s longitude, sign, house, house rulership, dispositor, dispositor’s house, right ascension, declination, azimuth, altitude, travel, north and south nodes, daily travel, antiscion, contra-antiscion, Gauquelin sector and plus zone, aspect orb ratio, and rise, set, culminate and anticulminate times.
• Text Pages. In addition, Solar Fire provides dynamic hitlists and many other types of tables in text format. You can display these using either glyphs or abbreviations, and can easily copy them into a word processor or spreadsheet where you can edit and manipulate them as you wish.
• Store Charts Anywhere in any folder, on any disk drive, and Solar Fire can still easily access them. You can even put your chart files on a network so you can share them with others. To keep your charts logically organized, you can create and name any number of special chart files -- for family, clients, celebrities, or even letters of the alphabet. If you forget where you put a chart, just type in the person’s name and Solar Fire will search through many files to find it.
• Back Up Chart Files Easily. Just specify where to put the backups (on your hard disk, a CD or floppy, a network, etc.) and you’re done. Such a simple way to keep your valuable chart data safe!
• Instantly Use Any Nova-Style Chart or older Solar Fire chart with no importing or file conversion needed. (If you do convert charts to the new Solar Fire 7 format, however, you can attach life events to the natal charts, and the program will thoughtfully place a backup of the old version in an “OldCharts” folder.)
• Convert Charts, if desired, to Solar Fire 7 format from JigSaw 2, Solar Maps, Solar Spark, Solar Writer and any previous version of Solar Fire. You can also import natal charts cast by any program that is compatible with Nova, Chartwheels, Astrolabe Reports or Matrix Blue*Star or QuickCharts (this includes Win*Star, which reads QuickCharts format). To import charts from other programs, Solar Fire 7 recasts the charts from birth data that has been exported in ASCII fixed-length or comma quote delimited format (as .txt, .asc, or .dat files). In particular, you can import birth data from Kepler names.txt files.
You can also export natal-type charts from Solar Fire 7 to other programs -- to Solar Fire 3/4 and other Solar .cht and .SFcht formats, and to JigSaw 2, Quick*Charts and ASCII formats. (Export to the .nov chart format is unnecessary, as Astrolabe Reports and Nova Chartwheels can both read and convert Solar Fire charts.) In addition, Solar Fire 7 can export a chart’s planetary positions as text files.
In converting a chart file, you can make Solar Fire 7 automatically convert all charts to a specified house system, zodiac and either geo or helio coordinates. Besides ensuring uniformity in charts imported from other sources, this feature provides an easy way to create alternative versions of large quantities of Solar Fire 7 charts without editing each individual chart.
• Print Out Lists of Charts in a File, with or without complete birth details and your notes on the chart. (You can also view or print chart comments next to the chart by adding a chart-comments box to a page design.)
• View Chart Comments and Life Events from the Main Screen. Now all it takes is a click in the chart’s Preview Window. Creating, editing and reading comments and life events couldn’t be easier! You can also enter, edit and view chart comments when you enter birth data or retrieve a chart from a file.
• Store Source Notes and the Rodden Data Source Rating along with the chart. You can also specify the sex of the person and whether the chart is a male, female, event or horary chart.
• Input with a Minimum of Keystrokes: Type birth dates, times and states in the shortest way, all in lower case with no punctuation, and with only 2 characters required for states and 2 year digits required for the current 100-year span (the years of which you can specify). Calculate a whole string of natal or subsidiary charts without leaving the input screen. Just double-click on a calculated chart to see it as a regular chart wheel. Then right-click on the chart screen if you want to change the points included, aspect lines, colors, wheel or page style. Also, you can bypass many menus by using shortcut keys and toolbar buttons, or by simply clicking on the Main Screen’s list of current program settings.
• New “More” and “Apply” Buttons in Solar Fire 7 save even more time by letting you calculate multiple natal and subsidiary charts without going back to the Main Screen.
• Customize the Planets. Choose from 3 Pluto glyphs, and 2 glyphs each for Uranus and Capricorn. Plus, throughout all program options, you can list chart points in whatever order you prefer (Sun, Moon or any other point first). You can also choose colors and type sizes/styles for planets and other glyphs.
• Customize Your Solar Fire Main Screen with constantly updating planet MC and Asc longitudes for your locality, a table showing the program’s current settings, toolbar buttons for the features you use most, and notices of new info and updates on the web. You can also choose the wheel style, colors and type of aspect lines for the chart preview window.
• Straightforward Menus and consistency between different areas of the program mean that when you learn one operation, you can easily figure out how to do most others.
• Desktop Publishing. Writers and editors can easily send Solar Fire graphics and text to word processing and DTP programs. Wheels, aspectarians and graphic pages come out beautifully sharp as .bmp, .wmf, .jpg, .gif or .pdf files. Interpretation reports automatically come out as .rtf (Rich Text Format) files, which virtually all word processors can read.
• ASCII Data Export. In addition, Solar Fire creates various listings and tables in plain text format, which you can copy to the Clipboard and then manipulate in word processors and spreadsheet programs. In fact, you can take birth data or positions of planets, house cusps, midpoints, stars, asteroids, Arabic parts and other factors, and export them to outside programs either via the Clipboard or by saving them to a text file. You can include longitude, latitude, right ascension, declination, azimuth, altitude, travel and related info for any chart or group of charts.
• Easy Chart Emailing. Send chart-wheel, page and other graphic images by email as .jpg, .gif or .pdf attachments that anyone can read. Send Solar Fire chart files as attachments to those who can open them in Solar Fire 5- or 6-compatible programs. Or send chart files as text to all others, either as attachments or in the body of the email. If you wish, you can include chart comments and life events.
Plus, if you have a MAPI-compliant email program (like Outlook, Outlook Express, Eudora, etc.) Solar Fire will even open your email program with the charts you want to send already in your outgoing message. No other astrological program makes it so easy!
Computer System Requirements
Solar Fire v. 7 Gold with built-in ACS atlas and printed manual, $325
Upgrade from Version 6 without printed Solar Fire 6 manual, $99; with manual, $114.
Upgrade from Version 3, 4 or 5 without printed Solar Fire 7 manual, $129; with manual, $144.
Upgrade from Version 2 (includes manual) $169
Upgrade from Solar Fire 1 or Nova (includes manual), $289
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Getting the Most from Solar Fire with Madalyn Hillis-Dineen Instructional DVDs