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Re: GALTONIA (computer searches)

Ken Kinman said:
So I think George is right. Computers should adapt to our needs as
much as possible, not the other way around. BTW, the same goes for cladistics as a tool, and that's one of the reasons I expect a future
backlash against purely phylogenetic classifications (regardless of phylogeneticists best intentions<
Yikes. I didn't expect to respond to one of these comments, but none the less, here I go.
Phylogenies aren't created to suit people. We shouldn't say, "I don't like it, so we should change it to suit us." The idea behind cladistics is to have a classification (theoretically) free of bias. So, if we want phylogenies to "adapt to our needs as much as possible," that would not be showing a truer picture of what is going on. I've heard that cladistics causes unneeded confusion and what not. Well, guess what. Life is confusing, complex, and more intertwined than we will be able to unravel in 100 generations. But why not try to understand. With a phylogenetic classification, you (theoretically) get a clearer picture of what is going on in nature without human bias. We should try to make things easy on ourselves, true, but not at the expense of knowledge, data and truth. We should try to understand nature as it is, not as it would be most convenient for us.

Student of Geology
Northern Arizona University
P.O. Box 20840
Flagstaff, Az. 86011
AIM: TarryAGoat
"A _Coelophysis_ with feathers?"

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