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Is there still a need for an archeologist or paleontologist? Does it really matter if we find all the bones from extinct animals or know what animal evolved from what?
I am asking because I think it is fun digging out bones, but I am not sure if it is useful.
Question Date: 2002-09-24
Answer 1:

Great question. I suppose the answer depends on what you mean by need. We don't need to learn about the past in the same way that we need to have food on the table or clothing to keep us warm. But there are a lot of interesting questions about ourselves, our culture, and life itself that can only be answered by studying the past. Where did we come from? Were people like us in the past, or were they different? How did we evolve, and how did other species evolve? How can we explain the presence of millions of species around us, each one unique? These are big questions and our answers are not complete, and probably never will be. This means that there is still lots of exciting projects and research to do.

If you like digging bones, keep doing it! It can be a hobby, or it can become a full-time profession. Either way you can have that thrill of discovery when you find something that no one has ever seen, and help us learn about ourselves and our past.

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