That is an interesting point of view and I think that it has very important philosophical and scientific consequences beyond the case of the giant human reconstruction itself. However, I do not agree that it is a hoax, but I propose to address this issue in this post if God wills.Arising_uk wrote:I see you're posting that hoax about giant humans. The picture you show purporting to show a 'Swiss 'museum' displaying the skeleton of a giant human is in fact a fake giant skeleton made for Erich von Däniken’s Mystery Park ancient astronaut theme park in Interlaken, Switzerland.
Many people misunderstand the science of paleontology and I think your comment exemplifies that stance among some people who have a lack of understanding of paleontology. Your comment is not just about the reconstruction of the Ecuador giant in Switzerland but it is more a particular stance on the science of paleontology altogether. Of course, if you do not consider paleontology to be science it is your right but I do not share your point of view if that be your stance. For if you are judging the reconstruction at the Switzerland museum to be a fake then all museums exposing dinosaurs are likewise fake! I do not share this point of view as for me all prehistoric museums have an educational value with respect to creatures which once existed in the past but are now extinct. So even though I am opposed to Darwinism, I think paleontology striped from Darwinian concepts is a true science. Allow me to talk a bit about that subject because I think it deserves that we take some time to clarify this important issue.
Let me start from the beginning.
Paleontology is the scientific study of fossils. Fossils are physical remains of organisms or traces of their behavior preserved in the rock record. Fossils can be roughly divided into:
Body Fossils: physical remains of organisms preserved in the rock record (shells, bones, plant parts, etc.)
Trace Fossils: traces of behavior of organisms preserved in the rock record (locomotion, feeding, burrowing, resting, coprolites, etc.)
When correctly interpreted fossils show how life forms and organisms differed from how they are today. In this respect, it has a true scientific and philosophical value. There are a lot of things that we as human beings endowed with intelligence can glean from the study of fossils.
Fossilization is a very rare event, and fossils, when found, are also very rarely found complete. It is very exceptional when a complete specimen is found. So most fossils that are unearthed by paleontologist are incomplete. So, before these can be displayed to the public in a museum they have to be reconstructed. Reconstruction is basically a process in which the paleontologist, through his/her expert knowledge of the anatomy of the various species and through special reconstruction techniques, can make an informed judgment about how to fill the missing parts in the incomplete specimens before these can be mounted for display in a museum. One useful principle among the many techniques used in reconstruction is that of symmetry of organisms, i.e. by mirroring, the missing parts of the incomplete specimen can be implied and then sculpted or replicated from its mirror counterpart.
When the unearthed specimen has been reconstructed in this manner, it is often replicated by molding and then casting. Replication is a widespread practice in paleontology for two main reasons:
1. To preserve the rare original fossil from potential future damage and deterioration.
2. To make a specimen available for display in many museums who do not possess or have the means to buy the rare specimens.
At this point everyone understands that a replica is not the real fossil that was unearthed and restored, so calling it a “fake” in this context is merely a trivial and uninformative statement. But calling the replica a “hoax” is unavailing and unwise.
Now in my next post, I propose to give some widely accepted examples of reconstructions and replicas that are exhibited in history museums all around the world.