[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index][Subject Index][Author Index]

Re: Velociraptor

Thanks for yours,
and I think you took the comment a little out of context:
Someone (who incidentally did not speak English very well) quoted a length
measurement (thinking it was a height measurement) and then wondered why it was
longer than someone else's height estimate.
In context, the intention was to point out that height and length are not the 
thing, not to make an absolute pronouncement about "height" in every 

According to Tom Holtz height is an arbitrary term  that does, as I said, vary
according to how the animal stands and is often measured at the shoulder: as you
said, in some cases it depends (I suppose a semantic dispute) on which animal 
it is.

Notwithstanding about dogs and horses, people are measured to the tops of their 
and so, I suppose, are giraffes. Measuring giraffes to the shoulder would -- 
from my
point of view -- be an absurd standard for comparison as silly as measuring 
from heel to hip and insisting that was a good standard for basketball players.

Perhaps someone ought to come up with a schema about how to measure each and 
extinct animal so that there would be less semantic confusion -- especially for
non-English speakers.

I think it is an unfortunate tendency of specialized groups to usurp the 
meaning of a
simple word (like height) and insist that it has only the "jargon" meaning of 
group. I think it behooves us to find a new term like "shoulder height" or "head
height" if our intention is to be clear and not to be arbitrary.

If we are measuring horses for something to do with pedigrees and 
then shoulder height might be quite useful. If we are measuring horses to see 
if they
will fit under a bridge, then we absolutely need to know how much higher than 
shoulder the top of their head is, or our poor horsies will have big bumps on 

How tall is an amoeba?

Betty Cunningham wrote:

> D.I.G. wrote:
> > There is a general confusion about the HEIGHT of an animal and the LENGTH 
> > of an
> > animal.
> >
> > LENGTH goes from tip of nose to tip of tail.
> >
> > HEIGHT goes from the ground to the highest point of the animal which could 
> > be
> > either the top of head or the shoulder depending on how the animal stood up.
> > Clearly, some animals would have held their heads up high (the way an 
> > ostrich
> > would today) and others would hold them out in front more... and all of 
> > this is
> > only based on educated guesses anyway.
> >
> NOPE- the HEIGHT of an animal depends on what animal it is.  Horses and dogs 
> are
> measured AT THE SHOULDER for height.  Yet horses and most dogs have heads 
> higher
> than the shoulders.  Measurements are not consistant unless it's scientific
> nomenclature measurement and then dorsal length actually means something

AOL IM Pager - DinoEditor
ichat PAGER - dinogazette

When you think of dinosaurs, think of DIG!
The Dinosaur Interplanetary Gazette - 245 Million Years of News at Dinosaur 
Encyclopedia Brittanica Internet Guide, Yahoo Editor's Choice, Science Site of 
Day, Member of The Paleo Ring

Teefr - A new fantasy-adventure story for the whole family by Edward Summer
Book Three of the Teddy Quartet, Member of The Author Ring.

Laser Publishing Group, Planetarium Station, Box 502-DIG, NY, NY 10024-0502