STL Science Center

STL Science Center

25 February 2013

Swimming with Xiphactinus

As has been mentioned in some of the Facebook posts (not necessarily on the blog posts) National Geographic's Xiphactinus is not spectacular due to television standardization; meaning sometimes the science gets sidelined by showmanship for interest purposes. However, almost every television show in existence has ignored facts here and there as it pleases them in order to air a show which will generate interest. This is a paradox that we have seen many times in looking at documentaries through our dinosaur vision, so we are used to it to a point; should the show be entertaining at the sake of some scientific fact or should it contain only scientific fact at the sake of entertainment? Entertainment purposes may generate scientific interest where lack of entertainment may cause people to "tune out" and all the science in the world may be wasted on having an effectively non-existent audience. It is a wrestling match as old as documentaries themselves. Regardless, I have two videos to share today, neither of which is a full scale documentary (more on the two documentaries which feature Xiphactinus on Thursday this week).

One shows a proposed swimming posture of Xiphactinus, which appears a bit rigid as far as I am concerned.

The other is a short documentary on the exhibit of Xiphactinus at the Hastings Museum in Nebraska.

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