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Welcome to Superoceras, a blog about science and natural history, slightly biased towards paleontology and zoology, but inclusive of all sciences. Started in October of 2009, my goal is to communicate scientific knowledge (and the occasional piece of nonsense) in an informative and entertaining manner. Feel free to contact me with questions, comments, concerns, or criticism at superoceras(at)gmail(dot)com, and follow me on Twitter @Superoceras for all that and more in 140 characters or less!

Friday, February 04, 2011

Interweb Science of the Week #4

Have you ever been out in nature, and marveled at the wonders of the living world around you? Stopped to look at a flower or critter, and wondered how much you actually have in common? Perhaps you care for a pet at home, and know deep down inside of yourself that there is a connection between you. One of the greatest things about being human is the fact that we can ponder these, and other questions, both from a metaphysical and scientific perspective. I'm not tackle the philosophical questions surrounding the nature of being, but I can tell you that the connections you may feel are grounded in sound scientific reasoning. You and every other living thing on this planet are connected to one another through common ancestry. That is, if you go far back enough through deep time on your family tree, you'll find that you are in fact (very distantly) related not only to other extinct hominids, but to the goldfish in your bowl, the grass you walk on, and the bacteria that make you ill as well. This edition of "Interweb Science of the Week" is brought to you by a website that aims to show you just how related you really are.

Evolutionary Genealogy (evogeneao.com) is a website that "seeks to promote the teaching and acceptance of the biological theory of evolution by emphasizing one of its great lessons: that life on Earth is one big extended family, and therefore we are related in an exact way to not only every other living thing, but also to every thing that ever lived." I don't really think I could say it better myself. This website is awesome. Where else could I so easily learn that my 300 millionth cousin (30 million times removed) is an octopus? Evogeneao is a great resource, and a fun way to look at evolution in a different perspective. Plus, they have this fantastic "Great Tree of Life" image that you can get a wall poster of (in addition to other items that will show off your "family" pride). Seriously, go have a look at this interweb goldmine. You just might learn something about yourself.

3 comments:

  1. That Tree of Life image is incredible!! Thanks for sharing.

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  2. Amazing! They just need to incorporate cladistics. (Dinosaurs are extinct? Nah!)

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  3. Thanks, guys. I've never seen a cladogram mashed up with the geologic time scale in exactly that way before. I thought it was definitely worth mentioning.

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