Stumbled across Sol Station while looking for up-to-date information on known stars in our local galactic neighborhood. Seems like a useful site for information on known local stars and what we've observed about orbiting bodies around them...pretty cool stuff.
I've decided it is time to devise a new hard SF campaign for later this year, and as is traditional I've decided that GURPS Space will do the job best, so I'm planning to construct a detailed "future history" using what we known about local space. The themes for this campaign involve a remote colony (perhaps founded on the 1.5X earth mass body around Xi Scorpii A) that weathered through a long dark age during which the old era of colonial expansion mysteriously ended and about which very little is known. The colony prospered and resumed local space exploration; the campaign opens up with the recovery of lost FTL tech, and the many possibilities it opens up. The premise of course is that the colony wants to figure out exactly what happened to Earth and the other forty-odd colonies that were known to exist at the time all contact was lost and the FTL ships dropped off the grid...and why. Naturally, the Scorpian Colony wants answers, but needs a dedicated organization that's also discreet to handle the job; the absolute and total lack of information about the loss of contact could mean anything: war disrupting the FTL transit lanes permanently, an extraterrestrial influence, natural distaster of some unknown capacity which prevented the use of FTL drives, or some specific agency or conspiracy to drop the Scorpian Colony off the grid...the only thing they know for sure is that no radio communications have been received from any colonies close enough and capable enough of transmitting, and no FTL ships have appeared in 80 years.
Anyway, this is a work in progress, so more to come! I considered several possible games for this campaign, including Traveller, Stars Without Number and BRP, but decided that once again GURPS really does have the best suite of tools for this sort of job.