Thursday, September 11, 2008

Famous again

I'm famous again. Well, sort of. I played a fairly minor role in some interesting new research on the rise of the dinosaurs that suggests it was their competitors, the crurotarsans (crocodiles and their antecedents), that had the greater range of body plans and indistinguishable rates of evolution back in the Triassic when both groups first appeared. The dinosaurs came to dominate, perhaps not because they were superior, but simply that they got lucky with two rounds of mass extinction hurting the crurotarsans much more, leaving only the true crocs to soldier on through the Mesozoic.

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About Me

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Currently I am founding member, president elect and entire membership of SWEMP (the Society of Wonky-Eyed Macroevolutionary Palaeobiologists). In my spare time I get paid to do research on very dead organisms and think about the really big questions in life, such as: What is the ultimate nature of reality? Why is there no room for free will in science? and What are the implications of having a wardrobe that consists entirely of hotpants?