On the relative nature of intelligence


Long have I puzzled over how I should consistently give a satisfying answer to different levels of intelligence. Unexpected, my grandpa gave me a concrete answer.

He said: "We are all idiots, in our idiot part, and we are all clever, in our clever part." "It is impossible to be good in everything." "Nobody is perfect." What a good answer!

This mostly coincides with my view: We tend to compare others intelligent to ours in our area of expertise. If someone exceeds our intelligence in our areas of smarts, then we automatically label them as being very intelligent. Conversely, if someone lacks our own area of smarts, then we automatically regard the individual as not being very smart. This is to say, we tend to scale the general intelligence based on what we have in ourselves. Theoretically, if you are the smartest person in the world in every single area, you will automatically think everyone is stupid and vice versa, because that’s how my theory works.

The special cases are when the smartness is being accepted by society, if that society is trustable. "If everybody thinks so, I should too, because I trust the majority’s judgement".

We tend to say someone is clever or stupid in general, but I think we should always add a parameter to include the part where the individual is clever or stupid. In which part is the person clever or stupid, instead of the person being just clever or stupid. This is much better, because if you say someone is stupid without a parameter, it automatically creates a counter-argument: why aren’t you better than him / her then? Or why is he / she better than you if they are so stupid? But if you add a parameter, such as he / she is just stupid in this area compared to you or another person, then the problem is solved and everything explained.

Ok problem solved.

In other notes, I purpose a possibly better way of measuring intelligence. The drawback of traditional method of measuring the IQ is obvious: it predicts very little. So where it went wrong must be the method itself. My new methods are as follows:

First, choose an area. As the preceding discussion have explained, you have to first define a parameter to the intelligence you want to measure.

Second, choose a learning task. Learning takes lots of combined intelligence to be performed, so it is an excellent way, if not the best, to be the thing that counts.

Third, choose a time period during which learning is taken place.

Fifth, use the formula: RIQS = (Learning Effectiveness + Unique Skills) / (Time Taken), where "Learning Effectiveness" = "End level of task" – "Start level of task", and where "Unique Skills" = skills or knowledge that is useful or correct but obtained not through learning during the given time period. "Unique Skills" was invented by the individual with the purpose of better performing the tasks given.

*RIQS stands for "Real Intelligent Quotient by Sirui"

After understanding my method you may say it’s too complicated. How am I going to perform this test on real people I see? It turned out you don’t have to perform a new learning task. You analyze what they have learned in the past and judge how well they have learned over the period of how much time, and whether or not they have developed their own way of optimizing the process throughout the task. Isn’t this easier than performing a new test?

In fact, it doesn’t really have to be learning. It can be competing, even earning money, climbing the social ladder… etc. My method measures not an abstraction of IQ, but rather a synthetic analysis of the individual’s capability on a particular task or combined tasks. It must work better than the IQ test because it is based on real world performance rather than an abstraction.

Only one problem: isn’t this already how we typically view people’s intelligence? I’ll leave this question to you.

P.S. Vision is the ability to see correctly how things are going to develop when has not been developed yet. I think of all kinds of intelligence, vision is the ultimate one and one of the hardest to do. That’s my current view and all rights reserved.

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One Response to On the relative nature of intelligence

  1. Suotian says:


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