ist list: paleontologist, geologist, biologist, environmentalist, computerist, istlistist
Playing pool, Plain Dealing, 2009
On Rush Creek, East Texas, 2007
Good friend: Laika, Golden Retriever (b. Sep 1999, d. Mar 2013)
In a Nutshell
I was raised in northwestern Louisiana, in the small town of Plain Dealing, Bossier Parish, which forms part of the region called the Ark-La-Tex. Early life was filled with fun experiences in the pine forests of the rolling hills and in the farm lands of the Red River Valley. My interest in science was a natural, but took a little "discovery." When I took a freshman geology class in college, I reacted with consternation: "Why didn't somebody tell me all this stuff!"
I taught at Centenary College of Louisiana, Lamar University, Texas A&M; Commerce, and the Univ. of Colorado at Denver. Presently, I work in software and media development, and have fingers in a few research pies.
Ph.D., Geology, University of Texas at Austin, 1992
M.S., Geology, Southern Methodist University, 1984
B.S., Geology, Centenary College of Louisiana, 1981
Professional and Community Service
Big Thicket Association, Board Member, 2004-2009
President, Golden Triangle Audubon Society, 2006-2007
Vice President, Golden Triangle Audubon Society, 2004-2005
Clean Air and Water, Inc., Board Member, 2004-2006
Texas Academy of Science Annual Meeting Host Committee, 2006
Dinosaur Day (a hands-on community science education event), Helped out with Dr. Jim Westgate, Lamar students, local teachers and students, in this fun event held at the Texas Energy Museum, Beaumont, TX; attended by 1000-2000 children and parents each October, 1992-2008.
Chair, Geology Section, Texas Academy of Science Annual Meeting, 2003
Vice-Chair, Geology Section, Texas Academy of Science Annual Meeting, 2002
Chair, Systematics and Evolution Section, Texas Academy of Science Annual Meeting, 1995
This subject was always a big interest for me, but at the age of 45 I decided to get serious, and while still teaching geology full-time, dove into graduate biology coursework, which I enjoyed thoroughly. It has made me a much more confident thinker. "Modern" human-caused problems have been on my mind for years, and certainly were the focus when teaching Environmental Geography and Geology. It became evident to me that I might be effective at working on these problems, starting with the knowledge I have about the evolution and diversity of Life, and about such things as computer mapping and sedimentary geology, if knowledge about biology, especially field biology, is added to the mix. The coursework helped me learn so much about plants, animals, and ecology. During that period I hiked the units of the Big Thicket, and became especially familiar with the new northern units along the Neches River south of Town Bluff, and the lands to the west along Rush Creek.
Computer Programming and Mapping
Much of my academic research has involved the study of sedimentary rock layers and their correlation using well logs, surface data, and fossils. One project, an offshoot of Master's thesis research, concentrated on mapping underground layers of anhydrite (similar to gypsum) in Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas, and Mississippi. Another involved the description of the Glen Rose Formation on outcrop across the central part of Texas, into Oklahoma and Arkansas. The distribution of dinosaur footprints on layers within the Glen Rose Formation and adjacent rock units was a big part of my dissertation, from which several research projects continued. Recent teaching has revitalized an appreciation for knowledge of local geology.
Most of my paleontological work has involved dinosaurs and other vertebrate animals. I have worked on significant excavations of hadrosaur bones from Upper Cretaceous rocks in Chihuahua, Mexico and of sauropod bones from Lower Cretaceous sandstone southwest of Fort Worth. I have also studied fossils from the Cretaceous of southwestern Arkansas, and from the Cretaceous of Colorado. Most recently, collections were made of Cretaceous shark and fish teeth from Arkansas. Several computer programming projects target items for biology and paleontology, notably a simple program called PhylogeneticTree, used for making web pages that show evolutionary history diagrams.
I started studying dinosaur footprints during Master's thesis research in Arkansas, when I found thousands of sauropod dinosaur ("brontosaur") footprints on limestone layers in an active gypsum quarry. Work on fossil footprints became a specialty, and in addition to Texas and adjacent states, this research has taken me across the American West, especially Colorado and Utah, and Mexico. In Mexico I worked as far south as Puebla, south of Mexico City. Most of this ichnological research has concerned the footprints of dinosaurs, but I have also investigated Permian fossil footprints from West Texas, made by pre-dinosaur age land animals.
Pittman, J. G., 2005, Illustration Types in Plone, North American Plone Symposium, July, 2005, New Orleans, Louisiana. See the software folder of this website and the plone.org/products area for various software projects related to this presentation.
Pittman, J. G., 2005 (abstract for the Texas Academy of Science meeting March, 2005): A Python Program for Analysis and Plotting of Ecological Data.
Pittman, J. G., G. Bell, and Westgate, J. W., 2003, The Tokio Formatiom at Nashville, Arkansas. Texas Academy of Science 106th Annual Meeting, Nacogdoches, TX, Program and Abs., p. 66.
Pittman, J. G., Bell, G., Cifelli, R., Langston, W., Jr., 2002, Cretaceous Vertebrates of SE Oklahoma, SW Arkansas, and NE Texas, Society of Vertebrate Paleontology, Field Trip Guidebook for Annual Meeting.
Pittman, Jeffrey G., and Westgate, J. W., 1999, New Permian Footprint Localities at Twin Buttes Reservoir, San Angelo, Texas, Texas Academy of Science Annual Meeting; abstract.
Pittman, Jeffrey G., and Lockley, M. G., 1994, A review of sauropod dinosaur tracksites of the Gulf of Mexico Basin, in GAIA: Revista de Geociencias de Museu Nacional de Historia Natural, Lisbon, a special volume called "Aspects of Sauropod Paleobiology," p. 95-108.
Lockley, M. G., and Pittman, Jeffrey G., 1994, On the common occurrence of manus-dominated sauropod trackways in Mesozoic carbonates, in GAIA: Revista de Geociencias de Museu Nacional de Historia Natural, Lisbon, a special volume called "Aspects of Sauropod Paleobiology," p. 119-124.
Meyer, Christian A., and Pittman, Jeffrey G., 1994, A comparison between sauropod track-bearing facies of Portugal, Switzerland, and the Gulf of Mexico Basin, USA, in GAIA: Revista de Geociencias de Museu Nacional de Historia Natural, Lisbon, a special volume called "Aspects of Sauropod Paleobiology," p. 125-133.
Pittman, J. G., and D. D. Gillette, 1989. The Briar Site: a new sauropod tracksite in Lower Cretaceous beds of Arkansas, in Dinosaur Tracks and Traces, D. D. Gillette and M. G. Lockley, eds., Cambridge University Press, p. 313-332.
Pittman, J. G., 1989. Stratigraphy, lithology, depositional environment, and track type of dinosaur track-bearing beds of the Gulf Coastal Plain, in Dinosaur Tracks and Traces, D. D. Gillette and M. G. Lockley, eds., Cambridge University Press, p. 313-332.
Pittman, J. G., 1989. Stratigraphy of the Glen Rose Formation of the western Gulf Coastal Plain. Gulf Coast Association of Geological Societies Transactions, v. 247-264.
Farlow, J. O., J. G. Pittman, and J. M. Hawthorne, 1989. Brontopodus birdi , Lower Cretaceous sauropod footprints from the U.S. Gulf Coastal Plain, in Dinosaur Tracks and Traces, D. D. Gillette and M. G. Lockley, eds., Cambridge University Press, p. 371-394.
Pittman, J. G., 1985. Correlation of beds within the Ferry Lake Anhydrite of the Gulf Coastal Plain. Gulf Coast Association of Geological Societies Transactions, v. 35, p. 251-260.
Pittman, J. G., 1984. Geology of the De Queen Formation of Arkansas. Gulf Coast Association of Geological Societies Transactions, v. 34, p. 201-209.
Integrated Science I & II
Petroleum Structural Geology
Stratigraphy and Sedimentology
Computers in Geology
Scientific Computing Using Python
Dinosaurs and Evolution
Dinosaurs of Texas
Environmental Geography and Geology
Natural History of the Big Thicket
Coastal Environmental Geology
Our Endangered Planet
Field Geology of Texas
Summer Field Camp (Sed-Strat/Mapping part)
Current Topics (Reading Seminar)
Computer Languages Used
PL/1, Fortran -- had classes in the late 1970's
C -- for general programming, and for DOS GUI, as proof of concept before turning to C++ and X/Motif
C++ -- for computer mapping and X/Motif GUI
Proprietary Macro -- for driving large gridding, grid operation, contouring, and display jobs in computer mapping
1990s to mid-2000s
Java -- for a substantial desktop app and Java Server Pages development
Visual Basic -- for a business app, and for programming Microsoft Word for dissertation
mid 2000s - Present
Python for general purpose and scientific programming, for Pyramid, Kotti, Kivy, etc.
Node -- with Thoth and command-line tools associated with SproutCore development
Coffeescript -- for build tools for SproutCore development, for node.js command line tools
Objective-C -- for development of Mac and iOS apps before turning to Swift
Swift -- for current (2014-2016) development of Mac and iOS apps