Category Archives: rants

more Juramuseum & the Kulturgutschutzgesetz

The previous post about the Juramuseum was full of fish, although it did end with a few higher vertebrates. All flattened, though. This time, there’ll be more higher verts, and the spineless stuff will be in 3D! Let’s start with … Continue reading

Posted in Dinosauria, idiots abound!, rants, sad news, Solnhofen Limestone, spineless stuff (invertebrates), spineless stuff (politicians), Theropoda | 6 Comments

GSA’s single article access scam

Note: I am not using the word scam in a legal sense here, but as an everyday language term. Maybe a case could be made that GSA’s behavior is in fact fraudulent, but I believe such a case would fail … Continue reading

Posted in Open Access, Open Access publishing, rants, WTF? | 4 Comments

RTFP becomes RTFS – on mis-citations and mis-representations in scientific works

Here’s a topic that has started to peeve me a lot, lately. It is a spin-off, or rather a development out of, the old RTFP adage. RTFP means Read the …. paper (I’ll leave it to your imagination what the … Continue reading

Posted in rants, WTF? | Comments Off on RTFP becomes RTFS – on mis-citations and mis-representations in scientific works

What NOT to do when writing a review

Current event make me want to put out a short, incomplete list of a few things you should never do as a reviewer: do not take text out of context do not paraphrase so that the meaning changes do not … Continue reading

Posted in rants | 2 Comments

The place is a zoo – the Tiergarten Berlin debate

Dieser Beitrag auf Deutsch. Recently, some journalists and politicians in Berlin started a big debate about the Tierpark Berlin: should it be closed, or what else should be done about it losing money? Does Berlin need the Tierpark, and can … Continue reading

Posted in rants, raves, Zoos | 2 Comments


Dieser Beitrag auf Deutsch. The post below is in part a bit cryptic. Specifically, I leave you in the dark with regards to the exact specimen and what is so interesting about it. There’s good reasons for that, so bear … Continue reading

Posted in rants | 1 Comment

How not to build an abstract submission webpage

It is that time of year: all palaeontologists in the English-speaking world try to predict the future, and know now what brand-new and interesting research results they will have found by late fall. That’s for submitting an abstract for the … Continue reading

Posted in rants, SVP 2013 | 6 Comments

How not to do science

Dieser Beitrag auf Deutsch. So there is a recent paper out in PLOS ONE by Georgi et al. They hypothesise that semicircular ducts scale closely with head size, testing this on dinosaurs. What’s a semicircular canal? Read up on it … Continue reading

Posted in "Prosauropoda", Dinosauria, Plateosaurus, rants, Sauropodomorpha | 6 Comments

They just can’t get thing done

Inspired by a wonderful column by Harald Martenstein in the German weekly Zeit about the inability of Berlin administrations, construction and other coprorations to get anything done properly (much less in time), here’s my version of Depeche Mode’s “I just … Continue reading

Posted in rants | 2 Comments

More on women in palaeontology

OK, I have calmed down a bit by now. Here’s a few more issues why we see few women as authors on palaeontological papers. Again, note that I am mostly only talking about within-science things (1st semester of uni on). … Continue reading

Posted in rants | 6 Comments

Women in palaeontology – where are they?

Today, news made the rounds on Facebook and Twitter about the abjectly low number of female authors on palaeotology papers. See here. Below is my unreflected take on this. Because many people will be too hectic to read it all, … Continue reading

Posted in rants | 13 Comments

“Prehistoric assassins” rant

The gag reflex still won’t subside: I accidentally zapped into the German version of Discovery’s “Prehistoric Assassins” yesterday (D.’s press page). Must have been fun for my wife, I repeatedly heard her chuckle when I yelled at the screen for … Continue reading

Posted in rants | 12 Comments

they caved – victory is mine!

Remember the rental car company trying to screw me?  Part 1, part 2. Today I received the letter in which they folded and slunk back into their dirty hole! How did I achieve this? First of all, by being right … Continue reading

Posted in rants | 4 Comments

STUDENTS!!!!!!!! sometimes they can drive you nuts

I won’t go into the details of how and why I ended up asking such a ridiculously easy and pointless exam question. I’ll spare you the utter dejection and desperation. Suffice to say that I ended up asking it. In … Continue reading

Posted in rants | 10 Comments

How a rental company in STILL trying to screw me

Remember when I had this rental car company wanting me to pay for a damage without liability? Well, they’re back, and stupider than ever!

Posted in rants | 1 Comment