Astronomy is much more than just admiring a beautiful night sky, and being in awe at the colours and the spectacles. It really is about being able to locate ourselves in space. In other words, where are we in relation to the important parts of the galaxy and universe.
Mapping space is a whole lot more difficult than creating a street map, and everyone knows how good they are, sometimes...
Space is all around us, so first we have to take a viewpoint and then a direction, then we can start to locate the more noticeable features around us.
Up to now, astronomy has concentrated on a canvas approach in the way the occupied space around us has been displayed and even studied, which is a great start, but very one dimensional.
Astronomy now has to move towards a 3 dimensional model of the universe, because until we understand what is all around us, rather than just one view, then we are not going to know, nor understand, the forces that are shaping our little world, completely.
We all know about gravity, but in space, there are wheels of gravity within wheels - there are many flows of attraction and repulsion. Galaxies attract other galaxies, while their masses still rotate an invisible centre point, and all these things affect all other objects around them.
I'm not sure our computer systems are up to providing the power and the detail required to show an ever changing solar system, never mind our galaxy in a form we can easily understand, Yet, astronomy has to be able to predict positions in space and show distances and times.
To do this, the maths have to be taken off the page and modeled in a totally evolvable graphics image, not just on a large screen, but in the very air around us, so we can move amongst the stars and see many viewpoints, and only then will we truly understand the majesty of the sky around us.
More importantly, perhaps, we will begin to understand and predict events that will impact our future, but also, we will see where we came from, for if we can model the future, then it should be possible to model the past.