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Tuesday, December 22, 2015

You're not stupid, you're just... inefficient

It should be fun to watch all the blank-slatists doing 180s from claiming that intelligence has absolutely no genetic foundation to claiming that everyone can be maximally intelligent regardless of their genes thanks to SCIENCE, which, as we are reliably informed, they f*%*#(! love:
Genes which make people intelligent have been discovered and scientists believe they could be manipulated to boost brain power.

Researchers have believed for some time that intellect is inherited with studies suggesting that up to 75 per cent of IQ is genetic, and the rest down to environmental factors such as schooling and friendship groups.

But until now, nobody has been able to pin-point exactly which genes are responsible for better memory, attention, processing speed or reasoning skills.

Now Imperial College London has found that two networks of genes determine whether people are intelligent or not-so-bright.

They liken the gene network to a football team. When all the players are in the right positions, the brain appears to function optimally, leading to clarity of thought and what we think of as quickness or cleverness.

However when the genes are mutated or in the wrong order, it can lead to dullness of thinking, or even serious cognitive impairments.

Scientists believe that there must be a ‘master switch’ regulating the networks and if they could find it, they could ‘switch on’ intelligence for everyone.
There must be? Or is it merely that they desperately want there to be one? Regardless, that is my new favorite insult that will reliably go over the target's head: it appears your cognitive network is remarkably inefficient.

This actually makes sense, though, as one of the chief differences I notice between the highly intelligent and the moderately intelligent is speed of processing. As Ender once described a young mathematical genius of our acquaintance, some take the slow, winding path to the mountain peak, some climb straight up, and then there are those few who can simply fire up their jet pack and fly right to the top.

Labels:

84 Comments:

Blogger Aeoli Pera December 22, 2015 10:46 AM  

I will refrain from commenting on this thread. Merry Christmas everyone, that's all you're getting this year.

Anonymous Soga December 22, 2015 10:46 AM  

I feel a great disturbance in the Force, as if millions of game show voices suddenly cried out and were silenced.

Blogger LibertyPortraits December 22, 2015 10:46 AM  

I just finished reading Locke's Essay on the Conduct of Understanding, and although he argues strongly for blank slate in terms of how we acquire knowledge, that no knowledge is innate, I think he would be favorable of genetic science proving inherent abilities in cognition.

Blogger Stilicho #0066 December 22, 2015 10:58 AM  

Just don't ask the guy with the jet pack how he got to the top. His answer will almost always be along the lines of "I wanted to see what was there, so I just went". If asked how someone else can get there, his answer is "just go".

Anonymous DanG December 22, 2015 11:01 AM  

The football analogy is especially interesting using American football. We see a lot of broken plays and false starts. Bad play calling too: a lot of "teams" with a serviceable short game try to go deep, and fail. Some "teams" never accept that they are just not very good, and always blame the refs.

Blogger S1AL December 22, 2015 11:01 AM  

Also wouldn't be surprising to discover that there's no purely optimal arrangement, thus savants.

Blogger Dexter December 22, 2015 11:06 AM  

Researchers have believed for some time that intellect is inherited with studies suggesting that up to 75 per cent of IQ is genetic

But... but... I thought the consensus of researchers was that IQ was imaginary... and that there were "many types of IQ"... and that it's all environment, not genetics... don't only Nazis believe in genetic superiority?

Anonymous VFM9000 December 22, 2015 11:11 AM  

Or: Your master switch is set to "off".

Blogger pyrrhus December 22, 2015 11:13 AM  

IQ is pretty much just processing speed. And the results of major genetic sweeps for intelligence suggests that it is the product of thousands of genes, many of which have other functions as well, and each of which makes only a tiny contribution. So the "master switch" does not exist....

Blogger Blackburn #0040 December 22, 2015 11:13 AM  

Hey,

we were promised jet packs...

Blogger Mr.MantraMan December 22, 2015 11:13 AM  

I would say the switch comment is to throw the Blankys off the trail

Blogger pyrrhus December 22, 2015 11:18 AM  

But... but... I thought the consensus of researchers was that IQ was imaginary... and that there were "many types of IQ"... and that it's all environment, not genetics... don't only Nazis believe in genetic superiority?

No, that was the consensus of communist academics and modern SJWs--scientists since Darwin have always known that intelligence is genetic.

Anonymous JN December 22, 2015 11:20 AM  

...and some wander off into the valley, completely oblivious to the mountain.

Blogger Randy M December 22, 2015 11:22 AM  

"if they could find it, they could ‘switch on’ intelligence for everyone"

This reminds me of the nonsense you see in a lot of popular movies. Change the genes (or more sophisticated, the gene expression) and viola! The Perfect Man.

Except that what drives function are the structures built over the lifetime to this point. Introducing a change in the genes of an adult brain will not instantly change the neuronal connections or structures built up so far.

Similar to how a shot of testosterone won't put muscles on you until you spend some months lifting and eating. And I expect muscles are much more plastic than brains.

Overtime, perhaps, a person with some kind of sci-fi gene therapy could develop improved retention or working memory, but it wouldn't be instantly and they'd probably still lag behind a "natural".

The real benefits of such treatments would be retaining abilities through old age, or when given in utero. Of course, that assumes a perfectable method and full understanding of what the trade-offs might be (unlikely) otherwise we're likely to get a whole generation autistic, or worse.

Blogger Polynices December 22, 2015 11:24 AM  

That article is stupid. We already know that intelligence is polygenetic, very much like height. There are groups sequencing thousands of people to look for genes and they can't find any with a large effect (sure, single mutations can make you stupid but that's not the same thing). It's also highly heritable, again very much like height. Tall people tend to have tall kids, right? Same with smart people. There are hundreds of intelligence genes that each have a tiny effect.

Anonymous vfm #0202 December 22, 2015 11:25 AM  

One of the benefits of having extra standard deviations is that you can like Moses see places you will never reach. For me it's the majesty of physics. Try though I may I have not yet grasped the link between group theory and the laws of physics. I can walk the highroad, but get lost instantly if I try to go cross-country.



What the Science leg-humpers don't get is that the primary product of knowledge is better ignorance; the technological marvels are a spinoff. You couldn't pay them enough to get it. That would not feed their gamma Secret King.

"A man's reach should exceed his grasp, or what's a Heaven for?", eh?

Blogger Sean December 22, 2015 11:25 AM  

How long before the left tries to ban this because it would be suicide for them?

Anonymous Napoleon 12pdr December 22, 2015 11:27 AM  

The biggest difference I've observed between the intelligent and the real geniuses lies in scope. Ordinarily bright people tend to stovepiped thought processes. They are good inside-the-box thinkers, but decidedly inside the box.

Geniuses don't recognize there IS a box. And are making cross-connections all over, pulling information from a wide range of sources and fusing them together. And they can get frustrated, because what they consider blindingly obvious is not so to anyone else.

Blogger Noah B #120 December 22, 2015 11:32 AM  

"Just don't ask the guy with the jet pack how he got to the top."

And at some point, a genius will encounter a problem too big for the jet pack, and realizing that can be crushing for some of them. They too need to learn how to take the long, winding road, even if they don't always choose to go that route.

Anonymous FifaSoccer December 22, 2015 11:32 AM  

I have often wondered what would life be like if everyone suddenly became a genius.

The resources are still limited but now the ability to compete for them is more equal for everyone.
Perhaps tribalism, ethnocentrism, nepotism would become the norm, maybe it would be necessary to install a dictatorship in order to artificially limit the competition, or even genocide.

Maybe the increased intelligence would lead to a reduced fertility among those who strived for greater wealth, then those with higher fertility would come to dominate even if they were not as intelligent.

The question is whether intelligence is self-selecting, just because everyone was smart once once doesn't mean that trait couldn't simply be selected out of the population.
Would intelligence matter for survival? Would it be desirable in a mate? If intelligence was cheap other traits would become more valuable, like ruthlessness and selfishness.

I just think that after a period of turmoil things would return to a normal distribution, maybe the least intelligent would improve temporarily. As long as the environment keeps changing people will have to adapt to it, and since there is not just one single environment, there is no perfect strategy for survival.

Anonymous NorthernHamlet December 22, 2015 11:34 AM  

2 points...

1. They'll say its okay to boost IQ but not surpress gay and transgender related genes.

2.It's not even about processing faster, it's about realizing you may modify your processes in the first place.

Blogger Noah B #120 December 22, 2015 11:36 AM  

"IQ is pretty much just processing speed."

It really isn't, although speed is important. There are plenty of quick thinkers with lousy memories or short attention spans, for example.

Anonymous Osprey December 22, 2015 11:36 AM  

Sleep deprivation matters. Intelligence depends on the number of short-term memory slots, the ability to use a short-hand to reference previously seen concepts (a.k.a. long-term memory), and processing speed.

Sleep deprivation is known to interfere with recording short-term memories into long-term memories. In my experience, sleep deprivation directly reduces the number of short-term memory slots. These two effects can combine to produce thrashing. (One work-around for not being able to remember something is to constantly bounce it between short-term memory slots, which further reduces the number of memory slots available for other purposes.) I do not know whether sleep deprivation directly affects processing speed.

In my experience, the overall effect is that each hour of accumulated sleep deprivation costs about 1-2 IQ points. (For a range between fully rested = best performance, through 30 hours = *way* less bright.) It can take months of regular sleep, exercise, and morning sunshine to recover from large amounts of accumulated sleep deprivation.

Anonymous Larry Kroger December 22, 2015 11:41 AM  

And then there are those of us who take so long that they freeze to death on the summit after a fit of acute pulmonary edema.

Blogger Steve, the Dark Ninja of Mockery December 22, 2015 11:43 AM  

I have often wondered what would life be like if everyone suddenly became a genius.

Ever been to a Mensa meeting?

Yeesh.

Blogger SciVo December 22, 2015 11:46 AM  

Incidentally, I just finished Mindset by Dweck and I think it explains a lot. It explains how demonstrable talents can lead to gammatude, although better should be more attractive than worse, because talent can lead to ego investment in not failing. So some of the very people who could be the best learners never learn how to put in the effort, because they're just not challenged enough. And you can tell them by whether they're triggered by accusations of failure or stupidity as a judgement on their person instead of just a sign of something to learn for future success.

Anonymous Baldy McGee December 22, 2015 11:46 AM  

There is no spoon.
- bald kid from The Matrix

Blogger Dexter December 22, 2015 11:47 AM  

I have often wondered what would life be like if everyone suddenly became a genius.

Poul Anderson wrote that book.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brain_Wave

Blogger Dexter December 22, 2015 11:48 AM  

I have often wondered what would life be like if everyone suddenly became a genius.

Ever been to a Mensa meeting?

Yeesh.


He said "everyone", not just the repulsive gammas who self-select for Mensa membership. =)

Blogger dc.sunsets December 22, 2015 11:50 AM  

Culture, which too is inherited, matters greatly well. Otherwise we'd all be speaking Mandarin.

Anonymous O.C. December 22, 2015 11:51 AM  

I rather think that if they find do a "master switch" for intelligence, the next step will be to find a way to switch it *off*. Ruling classes always prefer their peasants docile, content, productive, and stupid. The last thing they want is more independent, intelligent, and creative people, because those are exactly the people most likely to resist being ruled.

Blogger dc.sunsets December 22, 2015 11:52 AM  

Wait until the gnashing of teeth when it's admitted that White Privilege is nothing more than a group of people whose gene array is more often in an optimal setting.

Never mind. I got to the top of that mountain and such an admission was not there.

Anonymous KoranBurningFaggot December 22, 2015 11:54 AM  

I would say the switch comment is to throw the Blankys off the trail

The problem is the switch is made of genes also. Just like the box they cant think their way out of.

Change the genes (or more sophisticated, the gene expression) and viola! The Perfect Man.

Hey lets just put an 12 cylinder Lamborghini engine in a Prius, it will do wonders for the battery efficiency. If they got smarter would they be able to undo all the stupid ideas they had in the past? I remember reading that nerve cells have the highest energy demand at rest, thus making them the most expensive to keep up. Biologically higher brainpower would only be evolutionary favored in harsh K style environments.

How long before the left tries to ban this because it would be suicide for them?

What if they are not smart enough to see it? Like my ex that didn't believe in guns but lived in a gated community with an armed guard at the gate.

The question is whether intelligence is self-selecting, just because everyone was smart once once doesn't mean that trait

The smartest populations seem to be those that evolved in areas that they had to build/plan/store in order to survive no food growing in winter. Oddly being able to get food all winter might have hampered Eskimos. It has only been in recent history that white populations have not had famine on occasion. Ireland still has not reached its pre potato famine pop.

Anonymous Joe Doakes December 22, 2015 11:54 AM  

@19

That's why the free trade section of Cuckservatives was jarring to ordinary minds, while obvious to a certain Mind.

Blogger dc.sunsets December 22, 2015 11:57 AM  

@31 I disagree, rulers want intelligent but docile servants, courtiers and concubines.

Their interest isn't in dumbing us down, it's in reducing our numbers so we don't pollute their golf courses and beaches but keeping us in sufficient numbers to carry their clubs, serve them drinks and swallow whatever it is they're serving.

Anonymous KoranBurningFaggot December 22, 2015 12:00 PM  

Sleep deprivation matters. Intelligence depends on the number of short-term memory slots,

I believe there was someone claiming that black people being loud was white peoples fault, using that argument.

Blogger Sherrie December 22, 2015 12:01 PM  

Our school district has a good program for gifted students. Apparently, the average "gifted" kid has an IQ of at least 125.

There's some frustration, though, because more "diverse" schools don't have as many gifted students and thus, don't offer as many gifted programs. This, of course, is deemed racist. One solution, under FEDERAL mandate, has been to move Section 8 housing into the areas with "good schools." When parents protested, we were called, yup, you guessed it, racist.

Anonymous Goodnight December 22, 2015 12:02 PM  

They are also finding that most genes code for multiple things, so it may not be possible to flip the IQ switch without some nasty side effects. Who would want a brain boost if it came with hourly petit mal seizures?

Blogger dc.sunsets December 22, 2015 12:05 PM  

Oh, the Master Switch.

Put it in a pill and watch the zombies from a line.

This is just another in a long line of Quick, Effortless Fixes promised to Western Civilization's masses of lazy, brain dead collectivist drones.

Our "70% is consumers buying junk" economy already promises beauty to the fat and repulsive.

Blogger dc.sunsets December 22, 2015 12:10 PM  

Rhetorical question: since Western Civilization is overwhelmingly populated now with r-selected rabbits, are there enough atavistic K's left to leaven the loaf once this somnolant Everything-is-Awesome trance is broken?

Anonymous VFM#158 December 22, 2015 12:15 PM  

@12 - "scientists since Darwin have always known that intelligence is genetic"

I am fairly sure that humans have known that intelligence is heritable since shortly after the first species of wild animal was domesticated. At the very latest.

Blogger dc.sunsets December 22, 2015 12:17 PM  

Manipulating an existing genome to up its IQ horsepower seems like it's a VERY long way off, if ever.

Doing genetic tests on a fetus using placental cells sloughed into the maternal blood stream, however, already exists.

Once a fetus' IQ can be estimated via such genetic testing it will be trivially simple to selectively abort future idiots, just as it is now trivially easy to abort Downs fetuses.

Brave New World, indeed.

Blogger jay c December 22, 2015 12:21 PM  

Too much sugar and too little (good) fat in your diet can also reduce effective IQ.

Blogger James Higham December 22, 2015 12:26 PM  

Intelligent? What does that mean?

Anonymous grey enlightenment December 22, 2015 12:27 PM  

As Ender once described a young mathematical genius of our acquaintance, some take the slow, winding path to the mountain peak, some climb straight up, and then there are those few who can simply fire up their jet pack and fly right to the top.

That's why the 10,000 hour rue is BS. Even as early as 1st grade, teachers can easily identify the intelligent and dull kids, long before 10,000 hours can kick in. These advantages and telltale signs of high-IQ manifest themselves early, with the gap between the smart and everyone else widening without paucity as the years go by.

Anonymous Determinator December 22, 2015 12:29 PM  

"IQ is pretty much just processing speed."

Maybe to a degree, but some people only have enough juice to power a ColecoVision. No matter how much time you give them they'll never arrive at the right answer.

Anonymous dh December 22, 2015 12:37 PM  

Scientists believe that there must be a ‘master switch’ regulating the networks and if they could find it, they could ‘switch on’ intelligence for everyone.

Ahh yes, the scientific principle of "must because we want it". Very old, very solid technique that one is.

Anonymous Hezekiah Garrett December 22, 2015 12:38 PM  

Is there a particular technique you prefer for window licking? I only ask because Darwin and his contemporaries were decades from accepting Mendel's work.

Blogger Scuzzaman December 22, 2015 12:50 PM  

"Scientists believe... "

Perhaps one of the stupidest things ever written.

Anonymous VFM #0410 December 22, 2015 12:53 PM  

This actually makes sense, though, as one of the chief differences I notice between the highly intelligent and the moderately intelligent is speed of processing.

This is certainly a very visible difference, but there are others. Some individuals are just unable to grasp complex subject matter. In school, I remember that the most intelligent kids often had difficulty sparring verbally with those of average intelligence. They could not come up with "comebacks" quickly enough. Yet they could grasp complex mathematics, engineering, and other STEM concepts readily, which the average kids could not do.

I've often thought of intelligence as possessing two factors: speed of thought and depth of thought. And, in my experience, it is a very rare individual who rates highly in both.

OpenID Jack Amok December 22, 2015 12:59 PM  

that is my new favorite insult that will reliably go over the target's head: it appears your cognitive network is remarkably inefficient.

Or, given the football analogy, Look, you may have the Cleveland Browns of cognitive networks, but that's no reason to throw games trying for a better spot in next year's draft...

Blogger TheRedSkull December 22, 2015 1:03 PM  

This paper forms the basis for a new rhetorical weapon: IQ standard deviations as cell phone bars.

E.g., for the average white intellect, "due to network inefficiencies, he's only got three bars."

The fact that some of us are fiver merely underlines our transhumanism.

Blogger kaflick December 22, 2015 1:08 PM  

@23

Sleep also clears the mind and you can process better. I worked with a group of 3 other people in an image processing company and whenever we hit a problem that we couldn't come up with a method to solve within a couple of hours of brainstorming, we would just give up and sleep on it. It used to drive the rest of the company nuts when we would just quit working on something at noon and work on other problems. The next morning at least two of us would have a solution. We would then pick the best one and go with it.

Blogger OneWingedShark December 22, 2015 1:13 PM  

@39 "Oh, the Master Switch."

I saw that Dr. Who too!

Anonymous Trimegistus December 22, 2015 1:15 PM  

I'm with VFM: it's not speed of processing (and can we take the "brain as computer" metaphors out behind the barn and shoot them, please?). I know some very intelligent people who think slowly and methodically.

It's also obvious to me that "intelligence" is several related phenomena lumped under a single name. There's linguistic adeptness (what one might call "cleverness"). There's understanding of complex systems and ideas (maybe call this one "wisdom"). And there's the ability to synthesize and manipulate concepts ("creativity").

The idea that there's a "master switch" (AGAIN with the computer metaphors) which controls these three elements is absurd on the face of it. They probably use different parts of the brain and evolved for different reasons.

And note the rather pathetic "equalist" wish-thinking: that by SCIENCE STUFF we can make everyone "equally smart." But what about using SCIENCE STUFF to improve the cognition of people who are already brilliant? Doesn't all this just ratchet everyone up a few rungs on the ladder?

Blogger Scott Rassbach December 22, 2015 1:18 PM  

@40 Always. It only takes a few banded together. The rabbits scatter when the predator appears. Pack tactics generally catch prey, and the world is a target rich environment.

Blogger VD December 22, 2015 1:18 PM  

In school, I remember that the most intelligent kids often had difficulty sparring verbally with those of average intelligence.

That's because the most intelligent kids are considering a much larger range of options. Teach them to focus and they'd crush them.

Blogger Sevron December 22, 2015 1:21 PM  

I think it's also true that the highly intelligent youngsters gravitate much stronger to dialectic, which is not good when trying to explain that it's simply impossible for your Mom to literally be so fat that her hauling ass takes two trips; no matter how much excess adipose tissue one has, you cannot be separate from your ass.

Blogger Azimus December 22, 2015 1:24 PM  

Great, so here we go with Khan Noonien Singh. "Yours, is superior" that's right baby! But his pattern indicates two dimensional thinking. Let's fix that before we unleash him on Seti Alpha whatever it was and the dumbass actually did give up all his advantages to follow Kirk into the Mutari Nebula so maybe we're OK.

Ricardo Montalban was right!

Blogger VD December 22, 2015 1:25 PM  

The problem a highly intelligent person has with verbal sparring is that they try to read the situation in a dialectic manner. As soon as they switch to rhetoric (assuming you can convince them to do so, something almost all of them will resist), they rapidly become much more adept at emotionally harming the less intelligent.

"You're a nerd!"

"No, I'm simply more intelligent than you are. I would have to have three-quarters of my brain surgically removed in order to be only half as stupid as your mother, and that was before she let the chimpanzee that fathered you mount her. Look, I saw you eyeing my banana. Tell you what, show me that you remember how to say 'please' with your hands and I'll let you have it."

The other reason, of course, is that if the smarter kid actually unleashes verbally on the average kid the way he can, the average kid will physically attack him. What looks tongue-tied is often an internal debate on how far is too far.

Anonymous muh IQ December 22, 2015 1:57 PM  

Volkmar Weiss had some good articles on the same. Recently he had a letter congratulating some scientist for finding out the gene/allele responsible for higher IQ in humans and within humans.

Blogger Brad Andrews December 22, 2015 2:06 PM  

This comment has been removed by the author.

Blogger Randy M December 22, 2015 2:10 PM  

Yes, the smarter person must run their hueristics to model the, ahem, closer to the mean person, and sort out what words will be understood and what sentence structure won't lose them.
I sometimes trip myself up verbally when I mentally edit out a word at the last second for one that either fits better, or will be more readily understood.

Of course, the smartest people would be able to do such mental calculations quicker, but the inferential distance will also be greater.

OpenID Jack Amok December 22, 2015 2:37 PM  

It's not even about processing faster, it's about realizing you may modify your processes in the first place.

Yeah, if I could flip a "master switch", it wouldn't make people think faster, it would be to get them to think at all. Most people don't really think (i.e. dialect), they just have a bunch of canned responses that get, ahem, triggered(rhetoric).

Blogger Brad Andrews December 22, 2015 3:09 PM  

Genius is relative, just like poverty is relative. You will always have standouts. Some will always be richer than others, whether it is money or intelligence.

Anonymous VFM #0410 December 22, 2015 3:18 PM  

The other reason, of course, is that if the smarter kid actually unleashes verbally on the average kid the way he can, the average kid will physically attack him. What looks tongue-tied is often an internal debate on how far is too far.

Interesting. So there is a greater intellectual load to carry, so to speak, for the more intelligent kid. The dumb kid thinks only of a hurtful rhetorical remark and to hell with the consequences. The smart kid must weigh options, convince himself to avoid dialectic (as would be his natural inclination), try not to push the other kid too far, to avoid physical confrontation, etc...

It makes sense that this would incur a penalty for the smart kid.

Anyway, rhetoric is still foreign to me in a lot of respects. Doesn't come naturally for me. I must follow the example of our Supreme Dark Lord, and master its secrets.

Blogger maniacprovost December 22, 2015 4:23 PM  

IQ is pretty much just processing speed.

No. Although the brain is not perfectly analogous to a computer, there are short term and long term memory, working memory, algorithms, knowledge, and emotional factors to consider. That's saying an idiot can invent calculus given time and incentives.

Blogger maniacprovost December 22, 2015 4:49 PM  

Who would want a brain boost if it came with hourly petit mal seizures?

You had to ask...
http://www.amazon.com/The-Last-Master-Gordon-Dickson/dp/0812535626

Anonymous Malwyn's apprentice December 22, 2015 5:58 PM  

@42 & genetic testing for IQ

Remember the hoopla from leftists in the early 90s about the gay gene? Almost every day there was new, ground-breaking research showing that homosexuality had a genetic component. Then, not sure how or when, someone realized that gay gene = prenatal testing = elective abortions, and the story quietly went away.

The real funny part? Those religious conservatives, who leftists love to hate, would be the least likely to get elective abortions based on genetic testing, but fellow leftists would be first in line ...

Blogger SciVo December 22, 2015 6:05 PM  

Trimegistus @55:
The idea that there's a "master switch" (AGAIN with the computer metaphors) which controls these three elements is absurd on the face of it. They probably use different parts of the brain and evolved for different reasons.


It's even worse than that: different people do it differently. Intuitives might actually do all three in the same way, but I don't see how you can use the same technique to actualize the potential of people whose brains do parallel processing and people whose brains operate linearly.

(According to brain science, intuitives solve problems by blinking and having a storm in the temporal lobes, and then there's an answer sitting there. This obviously works well for making random connections, as long as your memory is good enough, and random connections are a good approximation of creativity.)

Blogger SciVo December 22, 2015 6:24 PM  

Randy M @63: Of course, the smartest people would be able to do such mental calculations quicker, but the inferential distance will also be greater.

Which is where age comes in. The young genius may be at a disadvantage in some ways, but now I have both canned responses and a larger dataset for my heuristics, not to mention knowing exactly when mocking laughter will shut them down or get me punched in the face.

Oh, if only I could go back to being a teenager but knowing everything I know now... Of course it doesn't work like that, but in a way, that's basically the point of fatherhood.

Blogger Neanderserk December 22, 2015 6:24 PM  

"(assuming you can convince them to do so, something almost all of them will resist),"

Ingenopathic geas communication protocol + honor flat. I'd estimate about half are affected.

Anonymous Ratchet December 22, 2015 7:59 PM  

Slightly OT. How do we explain the village idiots reproducing and turning out a tribe of exceptionally bright children? I have witnessed this on several occasions.

Blogger SciVo December 22, 2015 8:21 PM  

@ Ratchet:

Was there a smart grandparent on each side? If so, then recessive genes. If not, then just a complex system that is more than the sum of its parts. (That or cuckoldry.)

Blogger SciVo December 22, 2015 8:23 PM  

Oh fourth option, negative epigenetics that finally wore off after a few generations.

Blogger peposo7 December 22, 2015 8:38 PM  

Jetpack to the summit? Who else thought about Bobba Fett for at least a second?
Some might argue that chemicals have been used for decades to reduce our brain potential. The thought of scientists being funded to find the "master switch" sounds dangerous...

Blogger Desiderius December 22, 2015 11:14 PM  

"Just don't ask the guy with the jet pack how he got to the top. His answer will almost always be along the lines of 'I wanted to see what was there, so I just went'. If asked how someone else can get there, his answer is 'just go'."

Sounds like an alpha discussing alpha.

"Interesting. So there is a greater intellectual load to carry, so to speak, for the more intelligent kid. The dumb kid thinks only of a hurtful rhetorical remark and to hell with the consequences. The smart kid must weigh options, convince himself to avoid dialectic (as would be his natural inclination), try not to push the other kid too far, to avoid physical confrontation, etc...

It makes sense that this would incur a penalty for the smart kid."

With practice, the smart kid creates intuitive subroutines for all that stuff until they become second nature.

The problem I had when younger was all the SJW junk-code jamming the system, which led to avoidance and lack of practice. The Red Pill was like a massive debug.

Blogger Groot December 22, 2015 11:34 PM  

@9. pyrrhus:
"IQ is pretty much just processing speed."

Do not fight this battle. Even if you win, the victory will be... pyhrric.

@15. Polynices:
"It's also highly heritable, again very much like height. Tall people tend to have tall kids, right? Same with smart people."

Of course, killing your father and marrying your mother messes up the whole equation. Ask the son.

@18. Napoleon:
"They are good inside-the-box thinkers, but decidedly inside the box."

There are some people who live inside this humorless box. If you've ever interviewed for the consultants, you find that they are rigidly inside-the-box thinkers and recruiters. It's creepy. And they feel it: Nobody makes more fun of consultants than consultants.

"Geniuses don't recognize there IS a box. And are making cross-connections all over, pulling information from a wide range of sources and fusing them together. And they can get frustrated, because what they consider blindingly obvious is not so to anyone else."

It's not frustrating any more than any law of physics is frustrating: it's the way of the world. It's a puzzle to solve. As my friends, roommates, coworkers always say about me, it's all obvious to me. I just need to figure out what trivial bit of fluff you're missing. It's kind of cute, especially if you're kind of cute. If you're not, just listen and stop with the obsequience. God, that's annoying.

@28. Dexter:
"I have often wondered what would life be like if everyone suddenly became a genius."

"Poul Anderson wrote that book.
"https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brain_Wave"

Wonderful book. I reread that every several years.

@37. Sherrie:
"When parents protested, we were called, yup, you guessed it, racist."

Be strong, and accept that, simply by being white, you are "racist," complete with scare-quotes. Say it out loud, accept it, and defeat them.

@50. VFM #0410:
"In school, I remember that the most intelligent kids often had difficulty sparring verbally with those of average intelligence. They could not come up with 'comebacks' quickly enough. Yet they could grasp complex mathematics, engineering, and other STEM concepts readily, which the average kids could not do. I've often thought of intelligence as possessing two factors: speed of thought and depth of thought. And, in my experience, it is a very rare individual who rates highly in both."

YMMV, but this strikes me as bullshit. Smart guys marry pretty girls, and my interactions with the plebes may be dominated by my physical appearance, but my comebacks are quick and deadly. So easy. So funny. I spent much of my youth obsesses with words, with humor, with human interaction, with girls, with comebacks, etc., that this bifurcation between STEM concepts and real life is a mirage. Easy and fun is easy and fun.

I'm not really going to steal your girlfriend. You can have her back afterwards. I mean, look at her. I was drunk.

Anonymous Mr. Rational December 23, 2015 12:24 AM  

@18 Not everyone has time to learn everything, so even geniuses have different limits on what they can synthesize based on what they've had the time and interest to cover.  What's really interesting is when you get people pulling information from outside different boxes, and comparing notes.

@19 That's the feeling when someone with a different information set sees something you can't.

@25 Boring as hell.  Mensa doesn't select for genius, though; the tests are not specific for the "renaissance man" trait that distinguishes the real thing.

I used to attend an SF con which shared a hotel with a Mensa regional gathering.  The number of games of Yahtzee was unbelievable, but the Mensans weren't all that hard to loosen up with a couple of beers and then teach some filk songs to.  Expanding their concept of fun wasn't all that hard, but it didn't seem to stick.

@31 There's a dystopian SF short story about that, too.

@48 Darwin and his contemporaries didn't know about Mendel's work.  It was a single published paper that languished in obscurity, and Mendel's own papers were burned by his successor.

Blogger The Other Robot December 23, 2015 12:33 AM  

Is BGS Milo?

And then there are the exaggerated claims. Tyson claims to have been “mentored” by Carl Sagan, for instance. Yet it appears this “mentorship” boils down to little more than a couple of traded letters. If Tyson thinks that qualifies as mentorship, I wonder what he’d call my nocturnal liaisons with other men who share his skin colour. Adoption?

From: Scientists Who are Really Stupid: No 1, Neil deGrasse Tyson

OpenID Jack Amok December 23, 2015 12:45 AM  

How do we explain the village idiots reproducing and turning out a tribe of exceptionally bright children? I have witnessed this on several occasions.

Nurture can do far more to inhibit IQ than enhance it.

Or perhaps the Village Idiots weren't idiots at all. If you're a midwit, you might simply not be able to understand what a genius is saying.

Anonymous Reader December 23, 2015 1:05 AM  

They say that one of the characteristics of a highly intelligent individual is being witty.

Anonymous Reader December 23, 2015 1:13 AM  

When a highly intelligent person I know tells me about some issues he has with a third party or about a course of action he might have to take, I always advice him to not make it complicated.

Anonymous FrankNorman December 23, 2015 5:26 AM  

As Ender once described a young mathematical genius of our acquaintance, some take the slow, winding path to the mountain peak, some climb straight up, and then there are those few who can simply fire up their jet pack and fly right to the top.

And all of them can reach the peak, at their own pace. It's the people who won't even try who are the real problem.

Also, there's a difference between thinking quickly and thinking deeply. Some people do both. Some do one but not the other.
And some people do neither.

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