Thursday, November 19, 2009

Richard Dawkins and the crappy 'humanoid dinosaurs' that just won't die

See Tetrapod Zoology for the full post:

Regular readers will know that I'm not exactly a fan of the idea - discussed here and there in the technical (Russell & S├ęguin 1982, Russell 1987), popular (Hecht 2007, Socha 2008, Naish 2008) and speculative literature (McLoughlin 1984, Magee 1993) - that non-avian theropod dinosaurs might have evolved into humanoids had they not bought the farm 65 million years ago [image below by Matt Collins].

Collins-dinosauroid-Nov-2009.jpg

So it's slightly surprising to see well known evolutionary biologist and author Richard Dawkins take up the mantle of 'humanoid dinosaur' supporter in an article Michael Shermer has written for Scientific American. Things started with Shermer's argument that aliens - if real - will not resemble bipedal primates (he put this forward in a brief youtube video). Dawkins mostly agreed, but also responded with the argument that perhaps the odds aren't so vanishingly small after all, citing Simon Conway Morris's opinions and the dinosauroids of the speculative literature in his defence!

Posted via email from Garth's posterous

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