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Re: How intelligent were dinosaurs ?



>Are you saying that elephants are more intelligent that parrots 
>because their brain is bigger? Or people?
>
>Is it just size that counts?
>
>ES

Whale brains are huge, compared to humans, and just as complex as 
elephants', and dolphins, though smaller, are more complex still, though 
not close to that of humans (but of course I'm biased).

"Cognito ergo sum". Or in paraphrase, "We assume, therefore we don't 
know".

But that's just as good, for we are excercising a versatile function of 
ourselves in assuming one way or the other, and are therefore capable of 
differing between "this" and "that". The philosophical tool called 
Buridan's Ass assumes that a low-intelligence animal (such as a 
donkey---or a dog, per Jacques Buridan's referrence) placed between two 
objects of identical attraction cannot decide which to go after, and 
thus succumbs to its own inactivity or stupidity. Such "lowly animals" 
as rats, pigeons, even chickens and dogs, can and will make this 
distinction and choose either attractive object.

Now, while the consideration is what creature such a dino like *Troodon* 
is more like, this tool is useful in the function of figuring out, not 
what an animal prefers or how it chooses, but if the creature is capable 
of making that distinction. I will point out that a rat has a less 
complex brain structure cerebrally and cerebellally [sic?] than a dog, 
the complexity is probably not physiological.

I figure that *Troodon* had as much choice in lamb or goat as an eagle 
on an eerie does, waiting for the perfect moment to satiate a hunger or 
feed the chicks. Why evolve a complex form to hunt and kill (more with 
the hands than the feet, I'll add) when you can't decide to go after 
liver or heart when you've opened the carcass for lunch? (I'd opt for 
neigther, but I'm no troodont.)

Anyway, who are we to say one brain was better suited to function when 
most neurological pathways do not fossilize (or any, for that matter) 
and we cannot guess the inner complexity of a lump of foam-molding or 
the space between a *Giganotosaurus'* or *Troodon's* ears.

Jaime A. Headden

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