Monday, November 03, 2003

Down to Monkey Business

I was linked to at Monkey Watch, which made me feel I should do something to justify my monkey nickname. (Like all good nicknames, it was given to me by someone else as a spur-of-the-moment kind of thing.)

And then I heard Earth & Sky on the radio today. You can find here a transcript as well as a link to a realaudio stream. Earth & Sky's segments are very short (two minutes, perhaps), but are always interesting tidbits.

About the monkeys: for years, Sally Boysen has been trying to get chimps to count and understand English for years. From the Earth and Sky transcript (w/added punctuation):

I heard the chimps vocalizing [as] someone was giving them dinner. And I said out loud, for some reason, "Oh, they must be having grapes," followed by a reply to myself, "Oh, now how did I know that? "

After all this time of teaching chimps our langauges, she realized we can learn theirs and went proved they can recognize their own, too.

Being a scientist is cool.

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