In the year 2013 technology and science are amazing, one can only imagine what the future might bring, as one day holding a conversation with your pet will likely be a reality.
(INTELLIHUB) — Have you ever tried to talk to an animal, your pet maybe? Wouldn’t it be cool to carry on a conversation with your dog, cat, or bird?
Well soon you might be able to.
“Meet one person who is trying to do just that: Con Slobodchikoff, a professor emeritus at Northern Arizona University, and a modern-day Dr. Doolittle. Slobodchikoff is an animal behaviorist and researcher who has devoted his career — 30 years of it, at any rate — to the decoding of animal communications. And though Slobodchikoff has studied those signals across different species, he has focused his original research on the communications of the prairie dog. The creatures, he says, talk to each other using “the most sophisticated animal language that has been decoded.” The animals have word-like phonemes, combining those into sentence-like calls. They have social chatter. They can distinguish between types of predators that are nearby — dogs, coyotes, humans — and seem to have developed warnings that specify the predators’ species and size and color.
To arrive at those findings, Slobodchikoff relied on statistical analyses of the alarm calls produced by one particular species, the Gunnison’s prairie dog. He cross-referenced the acoustic qualities of the animals’ cries with the circumstances in which they were uttered, using the calls’ natural contexts as clues to their meanings.
For a detailed (and totally delightful) guide to the prairie dogs’ different alarm calls, see this Radiolab interactive. Meanwhile, the video below offers a summary of Slobodchikoff’s research and findings.”, reported The Atlantic.