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Re: Who says dromaeosaurs can't fly?




On Wednesday, September 18, 2002, at 02:09 AM, Tracy L. Ford wrote:

Actually, if you think about it, Paleontology is more of a 'fluid' science,
in that it's always in flux. New theories, new finds, constantly changing.

Most sciences are in constant flux - I suggest we notice the changes in palaeontology more because that is what we are interested in. Physics has changed a fair bit since last I looked, I'm sure it is the same with many other sciences.


Paleo uses evidence, not beliefs nor is it a philosophy. <<

I disagree, it is based on beliefs and a kind of philosophy.

ALL sciences have a set of beliefs, or assumptions, that they work from. Science includes evidence in logical structures, that's all. So palaeontology, which works primarily with evidence, is a science.


Tested the best way they can, but not the same way in other sciences, it's
impossible.

SOME other sciences. We can test hypothesis, it is just that we will never get the same amount of detail as some other sciences. That doesn't make palaeo philosophy. Philosophy is logic without recourse to evidence; if palaeontology is philosophy, why does anyone bother to dig up fossils? Surely it would be better just to sit around and think.


Just like any other science! If you find a "believer" in paleo out
there, shun him/her until they present
evidence.<<

Well, then you'd better shun me.

This is getting serious. Why so anti-evidence?

Yea, another cladist :)

Then attack the basis of cladistics, not easy, but worth a try if you think it really is flawed. Philosophy requires logic, especially the philosophy of science.


Usually other character sets.<<

Each clasdist uses their own set of sets. There is virtually, (but not entirely) no concession on what is set or what sets to use.

I don't understand - "on what is set" ?

I'm all for the old Linnaean system.

The Linnean System cannot be used to formulate hypothesis - it is just a classification system. A result, not a method.


How can we 'prove' Cryptovolas (sic) flew without that kind of animal living
today? Just look at the old posts on this subject. I, Greg, Stepehen, etc
believe (theorize) it can, but it is IMPOSSIBLE to prove without a living
animal, so because we know how modern birds fly others can say Crypto
couldn't because it doesn't have the flight system as a modern bird. But how
can we know that's true or that it could fly with (to some degree) with its
fossilized evidence? You can't, so were stuck. Sorry, but that is just the
way it is.

We can never "prove" anything absolutely, without some assumptions - this is true for ALL science. Palaeontology can reach firm conclusions about some things, not about others. This does not challenge it's status as a science.



John Conway, Palaeoartist

"All art is quite useless." - Oscar Wilde

Systematic ramblings: http://homepage.mac.com/john_conway/
Palaeoart: http://homepage.mac.com/john_conway/_palaeoart.html