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This program is a flash-cards style learning tool which presents the map of a constellation figure chosen randomly from among the 88 IAU constellations. The object is to select the constellation's name from one of five possible choices.

The current version of this program is version 2, identified as "Version 1.1 (build 11) of 2010.07.07.2230 UT", as can be determined from the "About" toolbar. The activity may be downloaded from here.

Bugs and feature requests can be reported at the bug tracking page.

The program's revision history is kept at the change log page.

Questions and comments other than bug or feature requests can be submitted on the "discussion" page associated with this article.


For best results, remove any previous version of ConstellationFlashCards you may have installed. Re-start X (hit Ctrl-Alt-Backspace). Then, simply follow the usual procedure for downloading and installing an Extra Activity. There is no special set-up required; once the activity has been installed, you can begin using it to learn the constellations.

Operating instructions

The activity will start in "Quiz" state, asking for the name of a randomly-chosen constellation whose map is drawn. Choose the name from one of the five names given in the combo control. A correct answer will disable the combo control and the "Tell me" button, leaving "Another" as the only enabled control on this toolbar.

Select the "Results" toolbar to see the progress to date. Use the "Activity" toolbar when you want to stop.

Let's look at each toolbar individually...

The Activity toolbar

The Activity toolbar is much like that of any other activity except that because this program does not support collaboration, the Sharing controls have been removed.

ConstellationsFlashCards Activity toolbar

The Quiz toolbar

The Quiz toolbar is where most of the activity's functionality resides. This toolbar is the one the activity shows when started.

Quiz toolbar

The combo control labeled "Name" offers you five choices for the name of the constellation whose map is drawn below. Choose a name and the activity will tell you if you got it wrong

Incorrect answer

or right.

Correct answer

Click the "Another" button and you will be shown another constellation.

If you just want the activity to tell you the constellation's name, click the "Tell me" button.

Request name

(Of course, you get no points when you use "Tell me" to get the constellation's name.)

The Results toolbar

The Results toolbar shows how you're doing. It tells you how many constellations you have seen, how many you got right on the first choice of name and how many you got right on the second attempt.

Show the results

The About toolbar

The About toolbar shows you the activity's version and the URL of this wiki page.

About toolbar


Although the program appears simple, there are some subtle behaviors involved. The program keeps track of how often a constellation is correctly identified on the first or second try and will present that constellation less often than one which the user is having trouble identifying.

Here is how the scoring system works:

  • Getting the constellation name correct on the first try is worth 5 points.
  • Getting the name right on the second try is worth 3 points.
  • Getting it right on the third try is worth 1 point.
  • When a constellation has 50 points or more scored to it, the program will not choose it again.
  • If a constellation's score is between 26 and 50 points, the program chooses it 1/5 as often as a constellation with no points.
  • If a constellation's score is between 11 and 25 points, it is chosen 1/2 as often.
  • The scores are saved between sessions, but when you start a new session, all scores are multiplied by 8/10. This ensures that even well-known
constellations will occasionally be given.

Activity Summary

Icon: Image:ConstellationsFlashCards.svg
Genre: Math and Science
Activity group:
Short description: Learn the Constellations
Description: This activity uses a flash-card like technique to teach the names and shapes of the constellations.
Maintainers: User:Davewa
Repository URL:
Available languages: English, Spanish
Available languages (codes): en, es
Pootle URL:
Related projects:
URL from which to download the latest .xo bundle
Last tested version number: 2
The releases with which this version of the activity has been tested. 8.2.0 (767)
Development status: 5. Production-stable
Ready for testing (development has progressed to the point where testers should try it out):
smoke tested :
test plan available :
test plan executed :
developer response to testing :
Facts about ConstellationsFlashCardsRDF feed
Activity bundle  +
Activity genre Math and Science  +
Activity version 2  +
Available languages English  +, and Spanish  +
Contact person Davewa  +
Description This activity uses a flash-card like technique to teach the names and shapes of the constellations.
Devel status 5. Production-stable  +
Language code en  +, and es  +
Short description Learn the Constellations  +
Software release 8.2.0 (767)  +
Sugar icon ConstellationsFlashCards.svg  +
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