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Dino Talk Early September, 2002: A Dinosaur Forum


Hi i'm back. So whats happening?
from Tom G, age ?, ?, ?; September 13, 2002


Anyway, no politics, or we all get really bogged down in it.
from da masta, age ?, ?, ?; September 12, 2002


"Well, compared to your DWF, it wasn't gory at all. *YEAH, GOOD POINT, ALTHOUGH I WAS GOING TO MAKE IT REALLY LONG WITH A TWISTY STORYLINE, EXCEPT I WAS TOO LAZY. I'VE JUST GIVEN UP WRITING ANYTHING CREATIVE ANYWHERE AT ALL RIGHT NOW.*

I only saw Dinotopia the movie, it's was pretty good(I like the word good), though they still have the "mean stupid carnivores and cool boring plant-eaters" storyline. *IN THE SERIES, ONE CHARACTER IN THE FIRST EPISODE ACTUALLY SAYS THAT THE CARNIVORES AREN'T EVIL, THEY JUST WANT FOOD. SO MAYBE THE SERIES IS BETTER THAN THE MOVIE.*

I wish people would just stop talking about 9-11, though, it's getting old, but not for the people who lost someone. England wasn't affected at all(lucky).*YEAH, BUT YOU DIDN'T MAKE FUN OF IT, DID YOU? I'VE GOT THAT ON MY CONCIENCE.*"
from da masta, age ?, ?, ?; September 12, 2002


"I do not understand the question."

What you said. Like, Troodon having two names.

"Well, if people are gone they're gone.
Nothing we can do."

Exactly.
from Gianna, age ?, ?, ?, ?; September 11, 2002


"I read the fiction, and it's very gory as usual..."

Well, compared to your DWF, it wasn't gory at all.

I only saw Dinotopia the movie, it's was pretty good(I like the word good), though they still have the "mean stupid carnivores and cool boring plant-eaters" storyline.

I wish people would just stop talking about 9-11, though, it's getting old, but not for the people who lost someone. England wasn't affected at all(lucky).
from Gianna, age ?, ?, ?, ?; September 11, 2002


I read the fiction, and, it's very gory as usual. And short, as you said, but it is... well, good. I hate the word "good," it's so a baby word. But I can't be bothered to stretch my imagination. I also think that violence in stories only really works well with a good storyline, and your piece was a little short to have much of a storyline. The trouble with us here is that we're too busy or lazy or both to write anything longer than a few pages!

And the "Dinotopia" series has started here in England, and I read that it was shown first in America. What do you think of the series? I liked the first episode a lot; it's brilliant. Goes to show that you don't need comedy or violence for a great film!

And today is September 11th. I'd just like to express my regrets to the Americans here and to the people who lost friends or relatives. I guess I was a bit stupid back when DinoTalk was still free. You know what I'm talking about.
from da masta, age ?, ?, ?; September 11, 2002


Well, if people are gone, they're gone.
Nothing we can do.
Let's just discuss dinosaurs.

I was thinking, why was Alioramus put in the tyrannosauridae? (Apatr from the two fingers, of course. I'm afraid my knowledge of Alioramus is infinitesimal.) Looking at it, I sometimes think it might need it's own family.
from da masta, age ?, ?, ?; September 11, 2002


"He lives in Britain=)It's a pretty cool country)."

Well, thanks, even though I'm not really British.
from da masta, age ?, ?, ?; September 11, 2002


"Do a lot of paleontologists make other names for other dinosaurs?"

I do not understand the question.

If you mean inventing new names for currwently existing dinosaurs, then no, not really. What normally happens in these situations is that, say, a palaeontologist discovers a new dinosaur, and names it. And then, a little later, another palaeontologist discovers the same dinosaur and gives it a different name. In that case, the first name given to the animal is the correct one.
from da masta, age ?, ?, ?; September 11, 2002


"£Hmmm. EQ. Sounds interesting but inconclusive (which I guess is what you're saying). What about looking at appendages? (Meaning:) I've read that some people think that one of the reasons humans got so smart was that we had sophisticated hands with opposable thumbs that allowed us to make and use tools, which in turn made us smarter. In other words, having the anatomy to do complex things helped push us to evolve the kind of intelligence that you need to take advantage of that anatomy. Do paleontologists ever look at claws or tails to try to figure out if certain dinosaurs exercised more precise control over their appendages than others? Do they use this as an intelligence indicator? *I DON'T THINK SO; EVEN THOUGH THE MANIRAPTORANS HAD THAT SEMI LUNAR CARPAL THAT EVENTUALLY MAY HAVE LED TO SOME DROMAEOSAURIDS TAKING FLIGHT, NO DINOSAUR REALLY HAD HANDS THAT COULD AT ALL COMPARE TO A PRIMATES. I DON'T THINK ANY DINOSAUR USED TOOLS.*
Of course, you don't necessarily need hands or a prehensile tail to use tools. I just heard about a recent experiment animal behaviorists conducted with ravens (thought to be fairly intelligent birds). They put some food at the bottom of a tube, and they gave a male and a female raven each two wires - a straight one and one with a hook on the end. The ravens very quickly learned to use the hooked wire to get the food and to ignore the less useful straight wire. At this point they thought the experiment was over: clearly the ravens understood how to use a tool. But THEN something unexpected happened. The male raven stole the female's hooked wire and wouldn't give it back. She thought for a bit, then she took the straight wire, flew over to a nearby wall, jammed the straight wire into a crack, and then used her beak to bend the tip - to make her own hooked wire! Nobody had ever seen a bird make a tool before. Pretty smart. *I'M SURE YOU'VE HEARD OF GALAPAGOS FINCHES, WHICH DARWI! N USED TO HELP PROVE EVOLUTION. THE WOODPECKER FINCH USES STICKS TO PRISE BEETLE LARVAE FROM UNDER BARK. IT HAS ACTUALLY BEEN OBSERVED THAT SOME WOODPECKER FINCHES, UPON FINDING A TWIG THAT WOULD SUIT THE JOB, EXCEPT IT HAS LEAVES OR OTHER SMALL TWIGS COMING OFF, STRIP THE POKING OUT BITS OFF THE TWIG AND THEN USE IT TO PRY OUT LARVAE. THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE RAVENS AND FINCHES, HOWEVER, IS THAT I THINK THAT THE FINCHES MAY HAVE COME ACROSS THIS ACCIDENTALY, AND THEN OTHER BIRDS COPIED THE TECHNIQUE, AND THE FEMALE RAVEN WAS ACTUALLY USING INTELLIGENCE. THIS IS HOW INTELLIGENCE CAN GROW IN ANIMALS. A PARTICULAR ANIMAL MIGHT DISCOVER A PARTICULAR TOOL, LIKE THE GALAPAGOS FINCH. THEN THEY USE AND ENHANCE THE TOOL, AND THIS SLOWLY BUT INEVITABLY DEVELOPS THE ANIMALS INTELLIGENCE, UNTIL THE POINT WHEN THE ANIMAL ACTUALLY HAS 'TRUE' INTELLIGENCE. IT ACTUALLY HAS A CLEAR IDEA OF THE NEW TOOL IT WANTS TO MAKE, AND USES IT, INSTEAD OF BLIND EXPERIMENTATION AND MIMICRY. AND FROM THA! T POINT INTELLIGENCE GROWS FASTER; WITH MORE INTELLIGENCE MORE COMPLEX TOOLS ARE MADE WHICH FURTHER DEVELOP INTELLIGENCE.*
So - I guess if birds are dinosaurs, then even little dinosaurs with no hands and no tail could be intelligent.*I GUESS. INTELLIGENCE IS PROBABLY THE HARDEST ADAPTATION EVOLUTION CAN PRODUCE, IT IS NORMALLY EVOLVED BY CARNIVORES OR ANIMALS WITH A HIGHLY COMPLEX BUT MORE OR LESS FLEXIBLE SOCIAL STRUCTURE."

from da masta, age ?, ?, ?; September 11, 2002


I wonder if any of you have noticed this.

When Diloph first came, Nov. 28 2001, he was immmature.

This was his second post he wrote, ever.

"ONCE AGAIN DILO RULES

trex.hm.dunno about rex.

BUT I KNOW ABOUT DILO!

STEDOSAYRUS ROOLS TO. I MEAN STEGOSAURUS. IT. RULES. MORE. THAN. REX.

I THINK!
now please Rex fans I'm just a poor little Dilophosaurus fan don't swarm me.
byby"

In December, less than a month leter, this was his post.

"Merry Christmas

thought I'd say it early.

And my the way all of you are my friends even though I've never seen you before and some people I'll probably never see(like da masta. He lives in Britain=)It's a pretty cool country).

If you have noticed, well he was immature at first because he wanted to try out being stupid. After a while he decided to be like you guys(well he really wanted to be). I remember him telling me, "I want to be like da masta!"
from Gianna, age ?, ?, ?, ?; September 9, 2002


I remember that I said if I wou;ld vote for fave made-up dinosaur it would be a tie between the closely related raptors Salidon and Janzosiraptor.
Well, now it would be Dalensaurus aegyptiacus(sp?),A spinosaur.

from Gianna, age ?, ?, ?, ?; September 9, 2002


Do a lot of paleontologists make other names for other dinosaurs?
from Gianna, age ?, ?, ?, ?; September 9, 2002


I'll read what you wrote in a sec. What I'm trying to say is that I might post what I think about it tommorow. Might.
from da masta, age ?, ?, ?; September 9, 2002


"They didn't exactly think of another name for Troodon, they originally thought Stenonychosaurus was a seperate Genus. From what I understand it's now widely believed that Stenonychosaurus and Troodon are really the same dinosaur."

So which name is right? One dino can't have two names, that really wouldn't work. As I said (probably on favedino), I don't know which one was named first.
from da masta, age ?, ?, ?; September 9, 2002


"What, you WANT us to go crazy?"

No, but in a large group of people having some really crazy people can make life much more interesting.
from da masta, age ?, ?, ?; September 9, 2002


By the way, I put up a new (sort of short) Dino story up.
from Gianna, age ?, ?, ?, ?; September 8, 2002


"By the way, why would anyone ever think up another name for Troodon?"

They didn't exactly think of another name for Troodon, they originally thought Stenonychosaurus was a seperate Genus. From what I understand it's now widely believed that Stenonychosaurus and Troodon are really the same dinosaur.
from Tim M., age ?, ?, ?; September 7, 2002


"We are calm and normally don't go crazy.."

What, you WANT us to go crazy?
from Gianna, age ?, ?, ?, ?; September 6, 2002


I have posted a message on favorites, anyway. So I am typing too much now because you guys are all back again, good, usually my girl friends are talkling about cheerleading and stuff, which is boring, and the few boys that are my friends talk about sports, cool guns, stupid girls, anything gross. You name it. But you all are mature unlike some people I know. Don't get me wrong though, they are really nice.

By the way, why would anyone ever think up another name for Troodon?
I have missed you all, I know you're busy too, but you always make time for online buds.

See ya, Gianna =) =) =)
from Gianna, age ?, ?, ?, ?; September 6, 2002


Yes, EQ is inconclusive. As a result there was some controversy about it a while back.
I've also seen some amazing examples of Avian intelligence. For example, there was one case where a fisherman had caught a fish in a pond, then left the fish, and the rod, alone. A raven came along a pulled on the string, getting the fish. Keas are also known to be smart.
Ceolurosaurs were porbably the smartest dinosaurs. For several reasons.
One group of Coelurosauria, the maniraptora, which includes birds, developed a half moon shaped bone in their wrist that alowed them to swivel their hands from side to side. This might have helped them grasp things, like prey. This is at least one anecdote that is at least remotely similar to the theory that implies that humans grew more intelligent due to their manual dexterity. That theory is pretty much valid.

I've read over and over that Stenonychosaurus IS Troodon. And the Dinosauricon genus index doesn't recognize it as a valid genus
from Tim M., age ?, ?, ?; September 6, 2002


Great to see you back Tim. You know, I'm very busy too but I always make sure I spend a little time here, every day if possible.

And where is Tom G, Joe Bob and Gianna?

I think that Amargasaurus having a fleshy hump is unlikely because it is often considered the most slender sauropod. Neural spines with flesh on are kind of flattened laterally and have a really rough surface. And suchomimus' spines are too smooth and cylindrical to support a hump. Spinosaurus is perhaps more likely to have had a fleshy hump.
from da masta, age ?, ?, ?; September 6, 2002


Woohoo! YESSS! More people! Halleluja!

"Hi -
I'm new to the site and not sure how this works, but I have a question:
Which dinosaurs are thought to have been the most intelligent? More importantly (maybe), how do they know? Do scientists just make their best guesses based on brain size, or are there other types of evidence that a given dinosaur may have been smarter than average?"

Before I say anything I'd just like to tell Andy that we are terribly desperate for people so please don't leave!!!

Tim said pretty much everything, but there is something I'd like to add. From experiments with modern day animals, we have, albeit a basic one, some idea of what parts of an animals brain do what. So we can apply this knowledge to dinosaurs, so we can tell if a dinosaur's brain was big because it had excellent senses, or could think well, or both.

The later, more advanced cretacious dinosaurs are the more intelligent ones. These include the tyrannosaurids, troodontids, stenonychosaurids, (a question here. I think I read somewhere that Troodon IS Stenonychosaurus. Is this true?!?) and saurornithoidids. And possibly dromaeosaurids, (velociraptor is here. I do not know how much you know about dinosaurs so please don't be insulted that I'm telling you quite easy stuff if you're very clever...) although this is controversial. Notice that the carnivorous, saurischian, dinosaurs are the clever ones. The herbivorous ornithischia and the sauropods generally had less intelligence. Often considered the most intelligent are troodon and stenonychosaurus, small predatory dinosaurs which hunted small mammals and lizards alone. However the fact that they have large brains perhaps indicates a complex social strucure? What do other people think?

Need to know any more? Just ask! And thanks JC for informing people that they can still discuss dinosaurs here!
from da masta, age ?, ?, ?; September 6, 2002


"Anyway, EQ isn't completely accurate, so don't rely on it too much."

Hmmm. EQ. Sounds interesting but inconclusive (which I guess is what you're saying). What about looking at appendages? (Meaning:) I've read that some people think that one of the reasons humans got so smart was that we had sophisticated hands with opposable thumbs that allowed us to make and use tools, which in turn made us smarter. In other words, having the anatomy to do complex things helped push us to evolve the kind of intelligence that you need to take advantage of that anatomy. Do paleontologists ever look at claws or tails to try to figure out if certain dinosaurs exercised more precise control over their appendages than others? Do they use this as an intelligence indicator?
Of course, you don't necessarily need hands or a prehensile tail to use tools. I just heard about a recent experiment animal behaviorists conducted with ravens (thought to be fairly intelligent birds). They put some food at the bottom of a tube, and they gave a male and a female raven each two wires - a straight one and one with a hook on the end. The ravens very quickly learned to use the hooked wire to get the food and to ignore the less useful straight wire. At this point they thought the experiment was over: clearly the ravens understood how to use a tool. But THEN something unexpected happened. The male raven stole the female's hooked wire and wouldn't give it back. She thought for a bit, then she took the straight wire, flew over to a nearby wall, jammed the straight wire into a crack, and then used her beak to bend the tip - to make her own hooked wire! Nobody had ever seen a bird make a tool before. Pretty smart.
So - I guess if birds are dinosaurs, then even little dinosaurs with no hands and no tail could be intelligent.

from Andy, age ?, New York, NY; September 6, 2002


It seems like there's finally going to be at least a little more action on this site now.

I don't remember ever saying that T-rex wiped out competition (at least not all competition on the entire planet), but I'll admit that I got out of control sometimes.

It's good to see that almost everyone's back. I'm very busy and I won't be able to come all of the time. But I'll keep up the best I can.

Hi Andy!
Welcome to Dinotalk.
Scientists measure intelligence several different ways in modern animals, but I won't go there since some of them don't apply to Dinosaurs, who left only fossils. The apparent "most popular" way of determining intelligence in dinosaur in Encephalization Quotient, or EQ. EQ is the size of an animals brain in proportion, or compared to the size of its body. So animals with large brains compared to their bodies were smart.
Having a big brain doesn't mean you are smart, if your body is 50 times bigger.

Anyway, EQ isn't completely accurate, so don't rely on it too much.
from Tim M., age ?, ?, ?; September 5, 2002


I wonder, what are people's thoughts on the theory that "sailbacked dinosaurs" stored fat in large humps supported by the neural spines?

And I wonder if you could do me this one little favour JC? (I'm presuming that since there is so little traffic here perhaps you are getting less emails, because I remember you saying sometime that you always got too much email...) I think that maybe everyone has kinda left because maybe they thought that I'd gone and they couldn't think of anything to say with just four people... anyway, I would like to ask if maybe you could inform the other four regulars that, hey I'm back, and maybe we should keep trying to talk and "hold out" until more people come here? Please? Because I don't know their emails and you do because of DinoFiction...
from da masta, age ?, ?, ?; September 5, 2002


Hi -
I'm new to the site and not sure how this works, but I have a question:
Which dinosaurs are thought to have been the most intelligent? More importantly (maybe), how do they know? Do scientists just make their best guesses based on brain size, or are there other types of evidence that a given dinosaur may have been smarter than average?

from Andy, age ?, New York City, NY, U.S.; September 5, 2002


Reading the archives I saw posts, from you as well Tim, but mostly Honkie, saying how T - Rex "wiped out competition." But isn't it true that the Abelisaurids dominated South America and a large part of Africa at the latter half of the cretacious? And all tyrannosaurids are either North American or Asian, right? So T - Rex was just up to the standard of the time*, not above it is my argument.

*Which was pretty damn high
from da masta, age ?, ?, ?; September 2, 2002


The trouble with us is that we agree on everything. We are calm and don't normally go crazy and we are rational and have similar views. If there where only two people who always totally disagree on everything DinoTalk would be ten times livelier. We need people with opposite views!
from da masta, age ?, ?, ?; September 2, 2002


Helloooooo!?!

Is anyone actually HERE?!?

Even if my message doesn't inspire any posts, please just acnowledge the fact that I am here! I was expecting something like everyone saying hello, how great it is to have almost everyone back, etc, and I see nothing. Dark times. I'll have to try to think of some kind of intelligent post to promote conversation even though nothing comes to mind now.
from da masta, age ?, ?, ?; September 2, 2002


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