Sunday, 25 September 2011
Earlier today I switched on the TV set to check teletext weather forecasts. Earlier on, the Met Office had forecast a decent day but I'd arrived home all wet.
Anyway, I happened to encounter a BBC show called Planet Dinosaur which as you may know, uses CGI to bring the dinosaur age to life. The bit I stumbled on featured a creature called Sinornithosaurus - a kind of birdlike lizard.
There was some interesting stuff to do with its feathers, suggesting that scientists have worked out what colour they may have been by the shape of microscopic fossilized structures which closely match those of birds today. It was also claimed that Sinornithosaurusto may have been venomous because grooves in its teeth are similar to grooves in the teeth of venomous lizards.
For a few minutes I thought the programme quite well done until I remembered why I'd switched on the TV in the first place - duff information from the Met Office. From that I was reminded of climate change and the general unreliability of the BBC, especially where science and drama entwine. For all I knew, Planet Dinosaur was a mess of improbable theories and exaggerations. Reliable or unreliable - how is one supposed to tell?
The initial waft of interest soon disappeared - I switched off.
PS - the Met Office just got it wrong - quelle surprise.