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Goodbye, IQ Tests: Brain Imaging Predicts Intelligence Levels

Soulskill posted more than 2 years ago | from the but-random-internet-sites-already-tell-me-i'm-a-genius dept.

Science 213

An anonymous reader writes "Research from Washington University in St. Louis has identified variations in brain scans that they believe identify portions of the brain that are responsible for intelligence (abstract). As suspected (and as explained by cartoons) brain size does play a small role; they said that brain size accounts for 6.7 percent of variance in intelligence. Recent research has placed the brain's prefrontal cortex, a region just behind the forehead, as providing for 5 percent of the variation in intelligence between people. The research from Washington University targets the left prefrontal cortex, and the strength of neural connections that it has to the rest of the brain. They think these differences account for 10 percent of differences in intelligence among people. The study is the first to connect those differences to intelligence in people."

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The question is... (5, Interesting)

houstonbofh (602064) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846105)

The question is, do the excess connections cause intelligence, or does working the brain cause the excess connections?

Re:The question is... (4, Insightful)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846169)

The question is, do the excess connections cause intelligence, or does working the brain cause the excess connections?

Seems to me the opinion of science is having ability isn't the same as keeping it sharp -- performing Crossword Puzzles, Sudoku, etc, keep your mind in training, same as physical exercise does for heart, muscle and liver.

Re:The question is... (2)

i kan reed (749298) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846181)

The question you're missing: is there a difference?

Re:The question is... (5, Interesting)

bunratty (545641) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846381)

Yes. If you could undergo a procedure that creates more the the neuronal connections that are correlated with intelligence, would you become more intelligent? I suppose you would, but the question really is, "How much more intelligent would it make you?" In other words, are there other brain differences that account for the increase in intelligence, such as chemical levels or the speed of neurons? Likewise, if you did exercises to increase your intelligence, would they increase the neuronal connections?

Re:The question is... (3, Insightful)

nedlohs (1335013) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846423)

One implies being intelligent is just luck in the bilogy dice roll. The other implies you can change your intelligence through some sort of effort.
 

Re:The question is... (1)

rubycodez (864176) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846603)

testing and our understanding indicate both are the case, you can be genetically gifted but you can also improve what you have. Lying on a sofa eating junk food and watching entertainment on the boob tube is not one of the self-improvement procedures.

Re:The question is... (3)

Gilmoure (18428) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846785)

What if it's Firefly?

Re:The question is... (4, Informative)

rubycodez (864176) | more than 2 years ago | (#40847099)

predictable formula stories, you IQ drops 1 point for each year you follow such a series.

8D

Re:The question is... (1)

Gilmoure (18428) | more than 2 years ago | (#40847267)

But witty dialog, sharp delivery and engaging characters. There's been nothing new story wise since Bill S put quill to paper. And he stole from teh Italians!

Re:The question is... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40846847)

How you were raised has an effect on your intelligence, especially if you weren't given enough nutrition, but also if your parents were highly educated. However, lots of research has been done, and it has not been discovered what it really is that allows the environment to increase your IQ beyond having the environment not be completely horrible. It's none of the obvious things like having books in the house, interesting toys, good teachers, parent involvement with education etc. The rule is that if you think it sounds reasonable that it would increase child IQ (as opposed to knowledge or skills), then it actually doesn't. So yes, there are things that you could do to increase your IQ, but unfortunately no one knows what those things are, yet it seems that children of well-to-do parents are doing them. If we knew, we'd have children doing it and the return on investment for society would be tremendous.

Re:The question is... (2)

stephanruby (542433) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846245)

Why couldn't it be both?

Re:The question is... (4, Informative)

ShanghaiBill (739463) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846459)

The question is, do the excess connections cause intelligence, or does working the brain cause the excess connections?

Twin studies give very strong evidence for the former. IQ scores for adopted children correlate much stronger with their biological parents than with their adoptive parents. But there could be a feedback effect as well: intelligent people are more likely to enjoy puzzles and engage in brain stimulating activities, which may cause the gap between them and dumb people to widen even further.

 

Re:The question is... (3, Insightful)

timeOday (582209) | more than 2 years ago | (#40847243)

Just remember that IQ doesn't include all of what people conventionally regard as "intelligence" - for example, knowledge. Even if your IQ isn't as high as another person's, you might be more motivated and work harder at obtaining knowledge, and wind up knowing more and being more productive than they are. (Of course in a large population people with higher IQ will have more knowledge on average since it is easier for them to attain, but averages are not deterministic for individuals - through effort you may become an outlier within your cohort).

The answer is... (4, Interesting)

Okian Warrior (537106) | more than 2 years ago | (#40847045)

The answer to your question is: it depends.

"Intelligence" has two separate and distinct meanings in colloquial English. It can mean the ease and speed of comprehension, or it can mean the total amount of knowledge a person has.

Working the brain will cause it to make more connections, and some of these connections translate in an abstract way to other topics. Thus, a Chemistry major might be able to pick up cooking more easily, or a farmer's son might make a better cartographer.

In some sense, the brain learns "patterns", and there are only so many patterns in the world. For example: once you get a deep understanting of exponential functions, you start to see them in the real world. Compound interest is an exponential function, for example.

Hence, gaining more connections can translate into an increase in faster understanding and comprehension of other things - they are "similar" to other things you've seen.

The other side of the question has to do with learning original patterns. This is based on fundamental processes in the brain and is all balled up with information and complexity theory, as well as motivation and perceived value.

There are at least 2 genes known to confer a general increase in intelligence, so it seems likely that the fundamental processes are more or less efficient depending on the genetic makeup.

There is also abundant evidence that the environment plays an overwhelming role in the brain's development at the current time, and in the current culture. The 2 genes mentioned are predictors of success and intelligence, but there are better predictors based on parental choices (how the child was raised) and random luck (being in the right place at the right time).

So even if you don't happen to have those 2 genes, you can become highly intelligent by working harder.

So back to your question: working the brain causes more connections, and by one mechanism these connections will be perceived as an increase in intelligence. Without exposure to information or variation in environment, there will be fewer connections.

OTOH, there is a genetic component which will cause more connections and a higher intelligence from the same data, all else being equal.

You may have high IQ ... (4, Insightful)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846131)

But what about your Wisdom?

Seems a better measure than how fast you can perform math, patern recognition, etc.

Thanks to AD&D I learned about the importance of balance Int with Wis

Re:You may have high IQ ... (5, Interesting)

Feyshtey (1523799) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846231)

Wisdom is generally considered the collective experiences of a person, and how those experiences influence a person's approach to later decisions.

Wisdom would be gained by discovering the effect of fire by putting your finger in it. Intelligence would be testing the effect of fire on something less critical than your finger in order to discover its nature.

Re:You may have high IQ ... (4, Interesting)

ddxexex (1664191) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846291)

I assume you haven't heard the adage that goes "A fool learns from his mistakes. A wise man learns from the fool's mistake"

Re:You may have high IQ ... (3, Funny)

maxwell demon (590494) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846377)

I assume you haven't heard the adage that goes "A fool learns from his mistakes. A wise man learns from the fool's mistake"

In other words, when there are no fools around the wise man doesn't learn anything at all. :-)

Re:You may have high IQ ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40846557)

The fool is simply the least wise person in the room. Anyone can honestly recall times they made very bad decisions (though many dislike admitting it), and most can remember times they've watched in confusion as someone else made very bad decisions.

If you can't remember any times you've watched someone else make very bad decisions, thank you for taking the essential role of experiencing the pain so that others can learn.

Re:You may have high IQ ... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40847047)

The fool is simply the least wise person in the room.

Oh, I don't know. I can think of a few times when everyone in the room is a fool. For example: The Republican National Convention.

Re:You may have high IQ ... (2)

avandesande (143899) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846731)

most of the fools I know don't learn from their mistakes

Re:You may have high IQ ... (1)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846327)

"Intelligence would be testing the effect of fire on something less critical than your finger in order to discover its nature."

Yes, exactly. Like watching carefully when someone ELSE puts their finger in the fire.

Re:You may have high IQ ... (1)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846341)

Wisdom would be gained by discovering the effect of fire by putting your finger in it.

No; Wisdom would be gained by noting the effect of fire on your finger, and learning a lesson from it. "Discovering the effect" is akin to learning, which is but a path to Wisdom.

Re:You may have high IQ ... (1)

your_neighbor (1193249) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846491)

By this definition, chimps can be wise.

Re:You may have high IQ ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40846573)

Wisdom would be gained by discovering the effect of fire by putting your finger in it. Intelligence would be testing the effect of fire on something less critical than your finger in order to discover its nature.

Ok... can I borrow your finger for a moment?

Re:You may have high IQ ... (2)

bitt3n (941736) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846587)

Wisdom would be gained by discovering the effect of fire by putting your finger in it. Intelligence would be testing the effect of fire on something less critical than your finger in order to discover its nature.

so, like, someone else's finger?

Re:You may have high IQ ... (1)

Ryanrule (1657199) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846637)

I agree, you touch the fire for me.

Re:You may have high IQ ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40846817)

I disagree.

> Windom would be the understanding that putting your finger in the fire might not be the best idea.
> Intelligence would be the depending factor in how exactly you tested that notion.
> Alignment would determine whether or not you'd test it on someone else.
> Charisma, Strength and Dexterity would determine whether you'd convince your target to do it themselves, forced them into it, or threw the fire at them.

At least thats my understanding of it.

Re:You may have high IQ ... (1)

kryliss (72493) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846973)

I'm not really sure I understand. Can you use car references?

Re:You may have high IQ ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40846907)

Intelligence is the ability to accomplish your goals.

Wisdom is the ability to pick good goals to accomplish.

Oblig (3, Insightful)

pr0t0 (216378) | more than 2 years ago | (#40847021)

Intelligence is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
Wisdom is knowing not to put it in fruit salad.

Re:Oblig (1)

Samantha Wright (1324923) | more than 2 years ago | (#40847231)

Prrrrrrretty sure the first one is knowledge. Can we fire whoever wrote that and get a do-over? Maybe something like:

Intelligence is predicting that the crew of the USS Voyager will have trouble escaping their current predicament because of complications resulting from their method of time travel before said complications are revealed.
Wisdom is knowing the show's ratings are tanking.

Re:You may have high IQ ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40847049)

NO. Wisdom is intelligence TIMES experience.

Only experience without intelligence results in a drone. A memorizing monkey. In other words: What you are made to in today's schools.

Re:You may have high IQ ... (0)

dkleinsc (563838) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846733)

Intelligence is the ability to figure out how to do something, while wisdom is the ability to figure out if that something was a worthwhile thing to be doing.

For instance, an engineer who helped build bombs for terrorist attacks might have high intelligence but low wisdom. By contrast, somebody who engages in acts of complete futility for a good cause is generally acting from high wisdom but low intelligence.

Re:You may have high IQ ... (1)

Aardpig (622459) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846737)

No, wisdom (or "common sense") is the consolation prize people award themselves when they're clearly not as intelligent as I am.

Re:You may have high IQ ... (1)

bjdevil66 (583941) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846851)

Don't forget your Charisma - 3

Re:You may have high IQ ... (0)

Aardpig (622459) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846893)

Charisma is the consolation prize people award themselves when they're clearly not as rich as Mitt Romney.

Re:You may have high IQ ... (1)

Jeng (926980) | more than 2 years ago | (#40847119)

What good are riches if you have no charisma?

If you have money and no charisma all you'll do is re-invest the money to make more money in a pointless cycle.

People with charisma blow their money in fun and fantastic ways.

Re:You may have high IQ ... (2)

bjdevil66 (583941) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846997)

Intelligence is knowing that someone posted something incorrect in an internet forum.

Wisdom is knowing whether or not to post the reply.

Re:You may have high IQ ... (0)

Xiver (13712) | more than 2 years ago | (#40847241)

Knowledge - Things that you know. (What)
Understanding - How things that you know relate to other things that you know. (How and Why)
Wisdom - Correctly applying understanding to produce desired results. (When and Where)


IQ tests attempt to measure understanding and wisdom. The best IQ tests supply most of the knowledge necessary to correctly complete the problems.

Intelligence is... (1, Informative)

sycodon (149926) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846183)

...what you do and accomplish, not what you are.

Re:Intelligence is... (4, Funny)

shadowrat (1069614) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846223)

yeah, but now we could quantify how much intelligence a person is wasting.

Re:Intelligence is... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40846253)

Intelligence is ability. Ability + effort = accomplishment.

Re:Intelligence is... (1)

Gilmoure (18428) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846823)

Horsepower?

Re:Intelligence is... (1)

krovisser (1056294) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846323)

I think that's called experience.

Re:Intelligence is... (2)

leonardluen (211265) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846669)

I think that's called experience.

yeah, you just have to hit "C" to bring up your character sheet and then you can see your experience score and level.

Re:Intelligence is... (1)

bitt3n (941736) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846409)

...what you do and accomplish, not what you are.

sounds like a commercial for nike pocket protectors

Re:Intelligence is... (1)

sycodon (149926) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846515)

Nice

Re:Intelligence is... (1)

avandesande (143899) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846763)

So did Bobby Fischer suddenly become unintelligent when he stopped playing chess?

"that they believe" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40846187)

It's something "that they believe". How muh faith do we need to read this posting?

As half the the population complains. (1)

jellomizer (103300) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846211)

As half of the random sample tested complains that it doesn't give the the correct values, using some lame ideological argument, due to their misunderstanding of the science. while the other half seem rather smug.

No more fizz buzz? Thanks God ... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40846213)

Applying for a job should be easier now. Just send your MRI scan.

OT: fizz buzz (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40846757)

Even with an MRI, I'll still be requiring fizz buzz. We had a programmer position go unfilled because none of the candidates that made it past HR could coming up with the most basic working solution to fizz buzz. We said use whatever language you want, or even use psuedocode. Just right the damn simple loop with a couple if checks. 0 applicants made it to the rest of the interview. If the job is to write code all day, I expect you to be able to write 5 lines of code.

Re:OT: fizz buzz (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40847027)

Great news! Can I send you my cv?

Already been done (3, Funny)

Lev13than (581686) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846217)

Unless the MRI can show the brain as a series of miniature illustrations [uh.edu] , these guys are about 121 years late to the game. But maybe that's just my approbativeness showing...

Hello Phrenology (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40846227)

Ha, and you thought it was just psuedo science.

which part of the brain are responsible for (3, Interesting)

emilper (826945) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846263)

... ambition, perseverance, drive and patience ?

Re:which part of the brain are responsible for (1)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846365)

It sounds like you are looking for (roughly) what they call 'executive function'. Also frontal cortex, according to the present state of the research.

What about the other 78.3%? (5, Interesting)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846293)

Seems like a pretty big gap... they're saying they've identified 3 factors that together make up (if they can be believed) about 21.7% of the "variation in intelligence". So where's the other 78.3%?

I'm not criticizing their results. Maybe they are correct. But it still isn't saying a hell of a lot.

Re:What about the other 78.3%? (3, Insightful)

Hentes (2461350) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846373)

Well if that is true they are already more accurate than IQ tests.

Re:What about the other 78.3%? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40846683)

A good IQ test measures IQ more accurately than the average bathroom weight measures weight. If you don't know how to make sense of the notion of how accurate an IQ test is, I'd suggest that you don't know what IQ is.

Re:What about the other 78.3%? (1)

avandesande (143899) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846859)

Bathroom scale errors are mostly linear while IQ measurement errors increase for each standard deviation.

Re:What about the other 78.3%? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40847101)

The problem with IQ tests is the variability caused by factors unrelated to IQ. Such things as cultural bias, education level, non-native language skills.

There are also many types of intelligence, for example, mathematical, verbal and spatial abilities. One number cannot correctly describe the guy who is at genius level for spatial skills while merely average for verbal skills.

IQ tests are a gross measure of potential at best, and only a fool would suggest that they can be as accurate as bathroom scales.

Re:What about the other 78.3%? (2)

i kan reed (749298) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846405)

Genes, nutrition, education, prenatal care, and hormones are all well-known contributing factors.

Re:What about the other 78.3%? (1)

Princeofcups (150855) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846881)

Seems like a pretty big gap... they're saying they've identified 3 factors that together make up (if they can be believed) about 21.7% of the "variation in intelligence". So where's the other 78.3%?

That's the nurture part, e.g. upbringing, economic background, schooling, family support, etc.

Re:What about the other 78.3%? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40847117)

The other 78.3% is the government telling you your intelligent. After all no one can do anything on their own now, it's been proclaimed by the great one.

At last, I cry! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40846299)

Finally! Vengeance for always being called "Pumpkin-head"!

Re:At last, I cry! (1)

Gilmoure (18428) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846887)

"Head! Paper! Now! Move that melon of yours and get the paper if you can! Haulin' that gargantuan cranium about! I'm not kidding, that boy's head's like Sputnik! Spherical, but quite pointy in parts. Well, that was off sides, wasn't it? He'll be crying himself to sleep tonight on his huge pillow!"

I prefer my method (3, Funny)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846305)

I still prefer my method of estimating other people's IQ by correcting their spelling errors.

Re:I prefer my method (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40846393)

Taht is carp. All you are donig is dicsrimniating agianst dylsexcis and poor tpyers.

Re:I prefer my method (1)

Gilmoure (18428) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846929)

Always Typ 15% for good serbice.

Re:I prefer my method (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40846397)

you are the worst type of person

Re:I prefer my method (3, Funny)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846439)

you're.

Re:I prefer my method (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40846507)

You're.

Re:I prefer my method (1)

Impy the Impiuos Imp (442658) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846661)

"Thou're" -- "You" is the plural "thou" in English.

Re:I prefer my method (2)

Impy the Impiuos Imp (442658) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846705)

Thou'rt, I mean. art, not are. DAMMIT

Re:I prefer my method (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40846695)

y'all're about that.

Re:I prefer my method (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40846975)

y'all're wrong about that. 0_o

Re:I prefer my method (1)

TheSpoom (715771) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846835)

Yore.

Re:I prefer my method (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40846903)

No.

Re:I prefer my method (1)

jcgam69 (994690) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846761)

Built-in spell checkers will skew your results. Use grammar instead.

Re:I prefer my method (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40846855)

"I still prefer my method of estimating other people's IQ by correcting they're spelling errors."

Their, fixed that for you.

Re:I prefer my method (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40847263)

I still prefer my method of estimating other people's IQ by correcting their spelling errors.

I dictate my posts to my secretary whom then has an intern type out my posts for her.

I know that guy. (3, Informative)

FilmedInNoir (1392323) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846359)

I've heard of Todd Braver before. He has done some interesting work on how digital devices are "rotting" our brains.
Not sure I agree with this detour into creepy eugenics territory though.

Re:I know that guy. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40846795)

Well as long as we're discounting science we dislike rather than addressing its scientific merits, I'm sick of hearing all this crap about how electronics "rot" our brains from cranky old people who don't understand new technology.

Re:I know that guy. (2)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846981)

I've heard of Todd Braver before. He has done some interesting work on how digital devices are "rotting" our brains.

Not sure I agree with this detour into creepy eugenics territory though.

Anybody who isn't actively pretending that everything we've observed in several thousand years of animal selective breeding(along with more recent statistical and genetic work on heritability of various things) somehow magically doesn't have implications is arguably already there...

It only really gets 'creepy' when you start planning 'eugenic unions of superior types' or fire up the ovens.

global brain connections and intellligence (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40846363)

original news release here: https://news.wustl.edu/news/Pages/24068.aspx
journal article abstract: http://www.jneurosci.org/content/32/26/8988

FINALLY. (1)

stanlyb (1839382) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846497)

At last, my intelligence will be measured automatically by some funny tool, without any effort from my side....
Wait a minute, this actually does not make any sense....
Aaaaaaaarrrrrrrrr, sorry? What? You say my IQ is 300? Oh, ok, now, i just wonder how to open this door with my iPhone!!!

Genii still susceptible to meme implantation (2)

Impy the Impiuos Imp (442658) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846617)

When I was 10, longer ago than most of you have been alive, my mother regaled me with a tale that Einstein's brain had 2x the number of convolutions.

  This was before they figured out that had something to do with it. Whatever happened to that?

DMV (1)

Westwood0720 (2688917) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846627)

I request one of these to be installed at every DMV.

So What? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40846629)

I had a friend in high school who was a straight A student, top of the class, all that. Guess what he wanted to do. He wanted to become a Car Mechanic. He should have gone to MIT and put us on mars. But he didn't want to.

Also he didn't have any street smarts and kept getting lost on short trips.

Again so what? It's what you do in the end.

Also Mycroft Holmes was smarter than Holmes as Holmes kept saying but what did Mycroft do? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mycroft_Holmes [wikipedia.org]

Re:So What? (2)

Westwood0720 (2688917) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846815)

I had a friend in high school who was a straight A student, top of the class, all that. Guess what he wanted to do. He wanted to become a Car Mechanic. He should have gone to MIT and put us on mars. But he didn't want to.

Whats wrong with being a mechanic? =[

Can it beat IQ if it's calibrated by IQ tests? (1)

cb123 (1530513) | more than 2 years ago | (#40846729)

The press release doesn't cover that, nor the abstract and the rest of TFA is behind a paywall.

In case the one-liner in the subject isn't verbose enough the issue is "what is being measured". One needs some kind of gold standard. "Intelligence" is a slipperly enough of a concept that in practice it tends to be "defined by" some kind of measurement scheme. This new measurement scheme has to be calibrated by some existing one -- i.e. these measurements explain intelligence as independently assessed by some other extant measurement scheme.

Unless they get a lot better at correlating than 20%-ish then either they represent a refutation of those existing schemes (which requires some other compelling argument) or they are dramatically inferior, but some new enough approach to be "publishable". The latter is probably all the research article is about. So, don't get your hopes up on "pinning down the slippery". If you are already uncomfortable with IQ tests as assessments then you probably won't accept any calibration of the new technique and thus view it even more skeptically than the existing techniques.

Are IQ tests still used in the US? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40846921)

I thought they were something "in the movies", rather than widely used. Do US schools use them? Or any other government entities?

This makes me feel a little better (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40846953)

about my giant candy apple-like head

Krang (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40847037)

What would Krang's brain imaging look like? He's a giant brain himself.

Intelligence and Wisdom are Somewhat Orthogonal (4, Interesting)

nukenerd (172703) | more than 2 years ago | (#40847081)

When I went to university, I thought I might find people mostly with similar opinions (politics etc) to myself, being of the same IQ group. Up until then I had always thought most people around me had plainly idiotic opinions and I had put it down to their being a bit low on brainpower. In fact I found the others at uni (who we can assume were all of significantly higher IQ than average) had the same range of idiotic opinions (IMHO) as people generally.

Surveys have shown that the distribution of political, ethical and religious opinions tends to be the same whatever the IQ group. I find this strange.

Take the infamous Mrs Thatcher. I can recognise that she was a very intelligent woman but at the same time stupid in many things. Like she thought that by privatising industries and selling the shares to the public (cheap), the British people would become shareholders in large numbers - a "shareholding democracy" - and we would all then clamour for more efficiency in those industries as shareholders. What happened is that we bought those shares and then promptly sold them again (mostly to foreign enterprises as it turned out - a large part of UK rail freight is now owned by the *nationalised* German Railways!). The point is that most people with any sense could have told her that would happen - why could someone so intelligent not see it herself? Just one example of my point.

And how did they do this ... (1)

sousoux (945907) | more than 2 years ago | (#40847113)

By correlating with IQ tests ...

and also when they were engaged in a series of mentally challenging tasks associated with fluid intelligence, such as indicating whether a currently displayed image was the same as one displayed three images ago.

Perhaps they are not as dead as all that.

So does this mean... (1)

LandDolphin (1202876) | more than 2 years ago | (#40847191)

that people can start posting Internet Brain Imaging that says they are above average now too?

I have an idea (1)

slashmydots (2189826) | more than 2 years ago | (#40847227)

Why don't they just do a contextual IQ instead? Answer survey questions like do you drive a Kia? Do you buy scratch off lottery tickets? Do you believe the moon landing was faked? Do you own an emachines computer? I guarantee they could get accurate to within 5 points.
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