Paleontologists have a long tradition of the use of mathematical models to assist in describing and understanding patterns of diversification through time (e.g., Raup et al. 1973; Stanley 1975; Sepkoski 1978; Raup 1985; Foote 1988; Gilinsky and Good 1989). This is natural, as the information, phylogenetic and otherwise, that paleontologists work with comes equipped with a temporal dimension, albeit approximate, which endows these phylogenies with information about the tempo of evolution as well as the genealogical relationships among the lineages. Mathematical and statistical modeling are the tools for unlocking the quantitative information in the...

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