Yup, some good-old fashioned New England astronomers picked
out a naked-eye visible nova a few days back. So what if
some guy in Portugal saw it first? Well, at least it's not
a comet heading this way.
Seriously, it's a real tribute to Hillbilly Science that folks with handmade
telescopes are finding important stuff like new stars in the sky before the
huge expensive observatories do. Those things have too much to dolike look
for ay-leensto be bothered with the mundane task of findng new stars
popping up out of nowhere.
So it's called NOVA AQUILAE 1999 NUMBER 2 and it's been reported as
"visual magnitude 5.6" which is a fancy way of saying that if it was
any fainter, you'd be out of luck. But it'll be there for sure if you have a
low-power pair of binoculars or something.