Thursday, August 26, 2010

An intellectual exercise

Here is an intellectual exercise.
Let us take the 3 groups:
A: Non-maniraptor dinosaurs (eg Tyrannosaur, Compsognathidae)
B: Non-avian maniraptors (eg. Dromaeosaurids, Oviraptors etc.)
C: Aves (eg. Enantiornithes, Confuciusornis etc.)

People agree that C is related to B.
But some people go further and say also that B is related to A.
But the people who believe that B is related to A, do not put it in that simple way. They keep saying that C is related to the "non-avian group" (A + B).
To be precise, C is related to the B part of the "non-avian group", not the A part of the "non-avian group". The phrase "non-avian group" is just misleading. Whether B is related to A has still to be shown.
And that is the question!
Does everyone see the issue?

And then think about how many times you have seen the phrases "non-avian coelurosaurs" and "non-avian dinosaurs".

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