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What I do
I have a Ph.D and am paid to study the Moon on a full-time basis by a governmental agency.
Why am I here?
I regularly read primary sources concerning the Moon, but disagree with a lot of what is said in tertiary sources. Astronomy textbooks are notoriously poor at summarizing what is known about the Moon. Wikipedia fills this gap, and it's my hope that the factually correct and current information presented here will diffuse somehow into the media and popular press.
Why should you trust what I have to say?
I have published 11 first author papers, coauthored 7 others, and was a co-editor and contributor for a major reference book concerning the Moon. My grammar and spelling might not be too great, but when it comes to the Moon (and a few other things), I generally know what I'm talking about.
Who am I?
I am not here to promote either myself or my research, and for this reason I prefer to remain anonymous. If you are smart enough, you should be able to make a reasonable guess as to who I am. Three people have already figured it out.
Why am I anonymous?
- Personal: I don't want to be harassed by crackpots, such as the ones that sometimes visit topics such as Apollo Moon Landing hoax accusations and transient lunar phenomena.
- Professional: I find that people often accept criticism better from someone who is anonymous than someone they know. The validity of my statements should be accepted for what they are, and knowing who I am might give my words more, or less, weight than they deserve.
Luna or the Moon?
Since joining the Wikipedia community, I have run into a very weird minority of people who think that the name of our Moon is (or should be) "Luna". In favor of "Luna", I have heard several arguements, none of which make sense to me. The three main themes are:
- Luna is the "official" name.
- This is not true. There is no official name of the Moon, and if you don't believe this, check with the International Astronomical Union. Indeed, every language uses a different name for our moon, such as La Lune in french, or der Mond in german.
- Of course its Luna. That's why we use the term "lunar."
- Yes, it is true that one of the adjectives pertaining to the Moon is derived from the latin word luna. However, we do not speak latin, though admitedly, the english language has been influenced by it. Where do you think the word month comes from?
- We should use "Luna" in order not to confuse it with the other (uncapitalized) moons of our solar system.
- Considering that the other moons of our solar system are named after the Moon (that is, Earth's only natural satellite; the capitalized one), perhaps we should stop calling the natural satellites of other planets "moons." The Moon was named first, and then this name was used elsewhere. If you are worried about confusion, then use the term natural satellite for these objects instead.