Some details on Meade's ETX-LS telescope have snuck out ahead of its early 2009 launch, and it looks like an amateur telescope for the digital age. That's because it'll drive itself to locate the stars you've chosen to look at automatically, using its database, in-built GPS and electronic level-detector system. And then there's a sensor package built-in there too, with a CCD sensor so you can save photos to SD card or even stream video out. Plus there's a speaker so it'll tell you data from its internal "Astronomer-Inside" encyclopedia. Sure it's no Keck, but it's good if you like the idea of something doing all that tricky science stuff for you (shame on you). There's no firm pricing info yet. [TechDigest]
I have a lower powered manual telescope that I took with me to the mountains (less ground light) on vacation with some girlfriends. While heavily intoxicated someone bumped it and we realized it was perfect for looking in the hotel windows on the OTHER side of the valley. It was a mistake, honestly, but its amazing the detail you can get from even a low powered one. This ones looks much more interesting for star viewing.