Why haven’t we seen the other side of the moon?

Answer by Award-Winning Scifi Author C Stuart Hardwick

The far side of the moon was first photographed by Luna 3 in 1959. The above is a recent image captured by NASA’s LRO.

If you are asking why we can only see the near side from Earth, that’s because the moon tidally locked. It used to spin faster than it orbits, but just as its gravity causes a tidal bulge in Earth, our gravity causes a bulge in the moon.

Tidal bulges are carried along by the rotation of the body in question, and so create a slight gravitational imbalance. Today, this imbalance is pushing the moon away as a rate of 3.5 cm per year and slowing Earth’s rotation by about a millisecond per century. In the past, that same process slowed the moon’s rotation until it’s rotational and orbital periods became the same.

Now the moon’s stuck with it’s tidal bulge facing us. Any perturbation that would tend to turn the moon with respect to Earth gets cancelled out by the pull of our gravity on the moon’s bulge, and nothing is ever likely to disturb it enough to break free.

How do autonomous cars know which signs apply to them (i.e. how to map signs to their side of their side of the road and/or lane)?

Amazing, huh. Do you own an Android Phone? There is an app called Google Translate. If you point the phone at a sign in a foreign language, it will show you the sign in your language.

We’ve come a long way with sign recognition!

Will the moon be closer to Earth one day and will it make ocean tides more severe?

No. The moon is drifting away about 4 centimeters a year. Over time it will drift out to space and Earth will have no moon.

Of course, the sun might become a red giant before that, killing everything, but the answer to your question is no.

As a result the tides will become less severe.

However, as the climate warms and the ocean rises as much as it is now, cities and communities near the sea will become flooded. This has nothing to do with the moon.

Who would win in a human’s future, artificial super intelligence or incoming alien invasion?

You are not going to like this answer.

Of the two, artificial super intelligence will win because there will never be an incoming alien invasion.

There probably are aliens out there. In fact, it’s 100% sure there are intelligent, space faring aliens.

It’s also true that no one can go the speed of light. It’s also true no one can go even 1% the speed of light. Even if you could it would take thousands of years to reach our nearest star, Alpha Centauri. It would take tens of thousands of years to reach the nearest star system – Trappist 1 – with Earth-like sized planets that probably don’t have any life.

These are not “laws” of physics that can be broken by “aliens” with better technology. This is just the way it is.

Interstellar travel is a myth.

However, AI is already in our smart phones.trapist1

How can I switch from Ubuntu Gnome to Ubuntu Unity without losing data?

Why would you want to go backwards? Ubuntu gnome is the way Ubuntu is going. Away from Unity.

Anyway, the problem is classically simple. You must find out where your important files are and back them up on a DVD (like I do) or a USB stick.

Install the new OS and copy the data back from the DVD or USB stick.

What are the odds of another planet having human life forms?

Some will say “absolutely some other planets have human life forms because an infinite universe has infinite possibilities.”

I will say differently. The human form has infinite possibilities in it’s evolution and therefore infinity divided by infinity is either none or all. I’ll go with none.

There’s no humans elsewhere, but there are intelligent, space faring species out there.