Telling the Phase of the Moon – Review 9

Times exist when you might want to know what the moon looks like. This urge can present itself at importune moments – during a bright, sunny day; when the moon has already set; when your internet connection has been lost. To get around this issue, I turned to software (well, why not?).

Moonphase/Månfas

Månfas Icon

 

Moonphase is a useful little tool for displaying the current phase of the moon.

There is one version each of the program for Swedish and French-speakers. The English version is further split into a Northern hemisphere program and a Southern hemisphere program. As far as my non-rigorous testing could determine, they are functionally identical.

The main window of Moonphase SH, showing the phase of the moon, a calendar (for selecting future or past dates), and an interactive map.

The main window of Moonphase SH, showing the phase of the moon, a calendar (for selecting future or past dates), and an interactive map.

The program is chock-full of features. In the top left is the current phase of the moon, with its accuracy listed in the lower left (usually ±1 day). Below that are dates for major moon phases in the current month – New Moon, First Quarter (Waxing), Full Moon, and Last Quarter (Waning). Just to the right of these phases, taking up much of the lower-central part of the user interface, are controls for choosing a location on the Earth.

As the phase of the moon is dependent on where it is measured, take care to enter the latitude and longitude correctly. You can use the pair of scrollable degree lists, or click at the precise location on the map in order to set the location. Full instructions are available by clicking on the button labeled HELP (on/off).

Image of the Swedish version of the program.

Image of the Swedish version of the program.

Above the map is a calendar for choosing year, month, and day. A small button to the right allows switching Sunday from the beginning of the week to the end. Below the button panel on the right are important moon facts (against a dark background) and sun facts (against a light background).

These include:

  • moonrise
  • moonset
  • moon phase
  • moon distance
  • sunrise
  • and sunset.

My only complaint is that Moonphase does not show up in the taskbar while running. All in all, though, it is a brilliant program.

Price $0 (Free)
Compatible OS‘s Windows XP,Vista,7,8
Licensing Generic Freeware License