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Re: node fossil

On Thu, Oct 15, 2009 at 12:59:28PM +0200, David Marjanovic scripsit:
>>  Maybe you weren't too far off with "keystone", though.
> Well, there's only one keystone in every arch... the one thing that  
> really annoys me about the term "missing link" is that it implies  
> there's _one_ link between two monolithic groups, while in reality there  
> are long transitional series.

Is there anything wrong with "shared ancestral form"?

As in, "We believe that Ardi is near the shared ancestral form of modern
humans and modern chimpanzees"?

All the nodes are the ancestral form of *something*; if you've got a
fossil nearer a node than before, or that represents a node you were
surprised to discover is there (aquatic ground sloth, anyone?), you've
got a new ancestral form.

-- Graydon