[Taxacom] New systematics book

Curtis Clark lists at curtisclark.org
Sun Sep 8 14:26:47 CDT 2013

On 2013-09-08 7:37 AM, Richard Zander wrote:
> Mike:
> Thanks for speaking for the list. I wasn't aware that Taxacomers agree
> with you so fully.

I wrote a rather long response to your call for someone to address the 
flaws you had pointed out. It sits in my drafts folder. I'm not sure 
what specific two flaws you meant. I went to Amazon to see what I could 
glean, and was generously provided with a table of contents and a 
portion of text.

I'm still not convinced that I would finish reading your book. Sometimes 
your writing seems impenetrable--your normal Taxacom fare is clean and 
literate, but when you start getting into the details of your ideas, my 
eyes start to glaze over.

Now the obvious explanation would be that I'm not very smart, at least 
in the areas of your work. But when I was first learning cladistics, I 
had the same problem with *some* authors, but not others. Hennig I had 
trouble with, Farris I had less trouble with, and Wiley was easy to 
understand (just picking some examples out of my addled memory). And at 
this point in my career, it's just not worth the effort to puzzle it out.

So if it requires reading your book to answer your challenges, I'm 
afraid I won't be the person to do it. Which is a shame, because I 
*think* I understand where you're going, and I'm not knee-jerk 
dismissive (I just think you're wrong).

Could you elaborate on "Can anyone on Taxacom address my two 
attributions of error in phylogenetics? Directly? Without regressing 
into nostalgia?" by enumerating the two attributions?

Curtis Clark        http://www.csupomona.edu/~jcclark
Biological Sciences                   +1 909 869 4140
Cal Poly Pomona, Pomona CA 91768

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