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I remember I saw it somewhere - The SciFi character stared the night sky with bare eyes (maybe robotic) for a while and determined which date time and location he/she is at from the observable location of the constellations and stars.

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The Sarah Connor Chronicles had an episode where a Terminator did that to determine the time he was in. – Oliver_C Feb 14 '13 at 10:34
Since you mention the characters working out the date and time, that suggests a time travel element so I would second the suggestion for The Sarah Connor Chronicles. – Rob Feb 14 '13 at 14:46
@Oliver_C Why not post it as answer, sounds reasonable. Nobody (not even OP) said it really needs to be a movie. – Napoleon Wilson Feb 14 '13 at 15:01
@ChristianRau - The Terminator only determined the time, not his location. But I now made it an answer anyway. Maybe the OP can clarify by adding more details. – Oliver_C Feb 14 '13 at 15:27
up vote 6 down vote accepted

The TV series Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles has an episode called Self Made Man where a Terminator determined the time he was in by looking at the night sky.



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Thank you! BTW I'm as almost certain that is possible with today's technologies. I intend to ask in some other (engineering) community is it really possible. I needed the movie to formulate the question with this great example :-) – Roskoto Feb 14 '13 at 16:32
This has been possible with "today's technology" for several centuries. About all you need are accurate histories of the paths of the stars (and moon)... and a lot of math. You can get season/hemisphere just by what constellations are in the sky, and the relative positions of certain stars (and conjunctions of certain planets) could give quick time ranges... with simple observation, before even starting on any of the necessary calculus. – Clockwork-Muse Feb 14 '13 at 22:47

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