August 14, 2013 |
How did sauropod dinosaurs move their heads? When they stood, were their super-long necks stretched up high to the treetops like a giraffe's? Set horizontal to the ground like a cow's? Or in some other orientation as yet unimagined? Many scientists have pinned their understanding of sauropod neck posture and flexibility on a groundbreaking computer model, described in a 1999 study in the journal Science. But a new study , published Wednesday in the journal PLOS ONE , suggests that model doesn't convey the whole picture because it doesn't fully consider how soft tissues like cartilage and muscle -- absent from dinosaur bones but available for study in extant animals -- might have influenced flexibility.
July 31, 2013 |
Dinosaurs may have taken flight earlier than we thought -- thanks to a larger brain. A new study in Nature finds that a wider range of dinosaurs may have had the neurological capacity to fly -- not just Archaeopteryx , the feathered dinosaur that's considered the direct ancestor of birds. While it's well-established that birds are modern-day dinosaurs, how they evolved from fearsome, meat-ripping theropods to dainty doves remains a hot topic of research. When Amy Balanoff, a paleontologist at Stony Brook University in New York, began planning a study of the evolution of dinosaur brains along their family tree, she expected to see a steady increase in size, following the observation that modern birds have larger brains than their ancestors.
July 31, 2013 |
A pair of fossil dinosaur skeletons dubbed the Montana Dueling Dinosaurs is headed for auction rather than straight to a museum. The duo, discovered touching on a Montana ranch in 2006, appear to be relatives of Tyrannosaurus rex and Triceratops locked in mortal combat. The long-dead dinosaurs, up on the auction block for Nov. 19, are valued at $7 million to $9 million, according to auction house Bonhams. It's unlikely a museum would be able to afford that price tag, said Luis Chiappe, a paleontologist at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County who was not involved in the find.
July 19, 2013 |
Vine? Instagram video? Sure, lots of neat little features for short videos, such as filters and what not. But here comes Efexio , a new app from a New York-based company that wants to create a special-effects marketplace for your phone and tablet videos. PHOTOS: Top 10 gadget fails Of late, special-effects studios have been feeling the pinch, with many struggling to survive the changing economics of their business. The folks behind Efexio say they're hoping the marketplace will create a new line of business for these folks. To kick things off, they've partnered with Berkeley-based Tippett Studio, a visual effects studio that has won Academy Awards and has had a hand in movies such as "Hellboy" and "Starship Troopers.
July 18, 2013 |
Dinosaurs almost bankrupted the tooth fairy. New research shows that the lumbering plant-eaters called sauropods produced new teeth as often as twice per month and had up to nine backup teeth in a single tooth socket. While the fearsome Tyrannosaurus rex is known as the king of the dinosaurs, the sauropods were the real royalty. These creatures, including the childhood favorite Apatosaurus (previously known as Brontosaurus ), were the largest animals that ever lived on land.
July 17, 2013 |
Paleontologists have discovered a strange new dinosaur -- a relative of Triceratops with a humongous honker. Nasutoceratops titusi , whose genus name means “big-nose horned face,” roamed present-day Utah about 76 million years ago. The find sheds further light on the dinosaur communities that inhabited what's now the western edge of North America. Similar to its relative Triceratops , Nasutoceratops measured about 15 feet long and weighed roughly 2.5 tons. Its colossal 4.5-foot skull bore a single horn over the nose, along with a horn above each eye and an elongated, bony frill toward the rear.
July 15, 2013 |
The Tyrannosaurus rex of "Jurassic Park" fame chases any prey that moves, then devours it with a bone-crushing gnash of its enormous jaws and serrated teeth. But paleontologists don't necessarily back Steven Spielberg's portrayal of T. rex , with some saying it may have simply scavenged the remains of dead animals it happened to find. Now scientists have unearthed what they say is the first direct evidence that the dinosaur king hunted its prey, further supporting its reign at the top of the Cretaceous food chain.
May 29, 2013 |
This post has been updated. Please see below for details. Even at the worst of times, one facet of the Alice in Chains saga was never in doubt: the longtime friendship of founding members Jerry Cantrell and Sean Kinney. The guitarist and drummer met when the hard-rock band formed in 1987 and have grown only closer through the years of success and tragedy. "He's my absolute best friend," says Cantrell, 47, the band's guitarist and co-vocalist. "I've never been committed to anything for this long through the good and the bad. And we're still doing this, which says a lot. It's meaningful.
May 29, 2013 |
When did birds first emerge from among the dinosaurs? It's an argument that has plagued paleontologists and cast a shadow over the reputation of Archaeopteryx, a feathered dinosaur that has long been considered the earliest known bird. Now, scientists say they found an even older feathered dinosaur - one that reestablishes Archaeopteryx as part of the bird lineage even as it may simultaneously dethrone Archaeopteryx as the earliest known "bird. " The study, published online in the journal Nature, provides a key link in the evolutionary chain of events that led from dinosaurs to birds.
May 6, 2013 |
NEW YORK -- It's bad enough to go from roaming the earth as a fearsome predator to being uprooted and dragged across three continents, but to end up in a basement in Queens? No wonder the Tyrannosaurus bataar was broken up. Literally. But not for long. Prosecutors and customs officials Monday loaded up boxes containing chunks of the 70-million-year-old dinosaur to ship him home to Mongolia, ending an odyssey driven by fossil hunters whose attempt to sell the skeleton led to their downfall and Tyrannosaurus bataar 's resurrection.