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Ancient Krakens Making Self-Portraits? 135

First time accepted submitter Sanoj writes "Strange patterns of ichthyosaur bones have been found on an ancient deep-water seabed. One paleontologist has put forward the theory that these could have been the work of giant cephalopods who were eating the swimming dinosaurs and then arranging the vertebrae to resemble their own tentacles. Sound far-fetched? Apparently, the modern octopus also does this."
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Ancient Krakens Making Self-Portraits?

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  • by elrous0 ( 869638 ) * on Tuesday October 11, 2011 @09:23AM (#37678306)

    Is anyone else disturbed a little by the paleontologist in this article actually calling this thing a "Kraken"? Look I know that may be the cute nickname they use in the office, but it seems a little tawdry for a supposedly serious researcher to use the name of a mythological creature in a public context. Makes me think this guy is a PR-whore looking to promote his work with sensationalism. What's next, someone finding a new type of dinosaur and calling it a "Dragon"?

  • Science is Awesome (Score:5, Interesting)

    by ideonexus ( 1257332 ) on Tuesday October 11, 2011 @09:32AM (#37678420) Homepage Journal

    This is why Science is so $#@%ing awesome. As Samuel Clemens put it best, “There is something fascinating about science. One gets such wholesale returns of conjecture out of such trifling investment of fact.” This will be a very tough hypothesis to sell, but the researcher says his evidence is ready to take on all skeptics.

    There are incredible stories waiting to be revealed in the fossil record and stories we have already uncovered. There's the footprints of Austrolopithecus, which were preserved in volcanic ash, large and small, male and female, close together as if they were huddling--perhaps the male had his arm around his mate, and the female's footprints lopsided as if she were carrying an infant. Imagine what it was like for them, walking fearfully across a landscape raining ash from a distant volcano... This story is drawn in this famous diorama [flickr.com].

    Or the Taung child [si.edu], whose skull bares the scars of an eagle attack. The child was carried away by a bird of prey. A story both fantastic and tragic at once.

    Or the stories of Homo erectus , who was the velociraptor of our human ancestors. She was a total badass, which is why I love this statue of her [flickr.com] at the Smithsonian Hall of Human Origins carrying a rotting caribou carcass across the Serengeti.

    Science has thousands of these stories that we have already discovered, and an infinite supply of them in store for us if we keep exploring. Knowing this, I simply don't understand how people can be so impressed with a book covering a few hundred years of human history and consider it sacred. The sacred is all around us, written in the natural world waiting for us to read it.

  • by angel'o'sphere ( 80593 ) on Tuesday October 11, 2011 @09:56AM (#37678704) Journal

    A "Kraken" is not necessarily large. Even if it is just the size of my fist it is a Kraken. And you parent is not correct either, Octopus is an ordinary word to describe a Kraken, the other thing is a Calamar. Yes, those names likely are not "scientific", but this are the names comonly used by *germans* and I guess in other languages as well. So the most logical conclusion is: the original author is a non native english speaker and used words from his own language and "enlified" them.
    Just google: http://www.google.de/search?q=picture+Krake+Paul [google.de]

  • by Colin Douglas Howell ( 670559 ) on Tuesday October 11, 2011 @12:20PM (#37680384)

    Science is awesome, but keep in mind this disparaging note on the "scientist's" Wiki page: He has earned the nickname McMinimal from his colleagues due to the perceived poor quality of his research, such as suggesting that Agnostids are cannibals and claiming that the Kraken was a real beast..

    Whatever you think of this professor's hypothesis, that note was added just hours ago [wikipedia.org] by an anonymous IP editor, without any references. It has since been removed [wikipedia.org], rightly so.

God help those who do not help themselves. -- Wilson Mizner