18.4.07

Preconceptions Challenged

One thing you'll see from time to time on the Innernats, is someone waving their IQ around to try and impress people. Now, if your IQ is high enough that you want to tell people about it, then you're probably not stupid, but you are ignorant. Mensa are people who know a thing or two about IQ tests, and as they put it:

As different IQ tests were developed, each was given its own scoring system. Therefore, an IQ of 150 is a meaningless claim unless you know the actual test which was used.

Better to quote where your score came relative to the rest of the population. This also reduces the scorn I will feel for you.

It's also not uncommon to hear uninformed people discussing biology and using terms like 'more evolved' - often to mean 'more human like'. This little piece of hubris has perhaps received it's final nail in the coffin. As New Scientist reports, chimps are 'more evolved' than humans:

Zhang's team found that 233 chimp genes, compared with only 154 human ones, have been changed by selection since chimps and humans split from their common ancestor about 6 million years ago.

This result makes sense to biologists. The human population has been quite small compared to that of chimps until somewhat recently (in evolutionary terms), and we would expect genetic drift to have had more of an effect.

3 comments:

Tinker said...

I always suspected Cheeta was much smarter than Tarzan...and probably me, as well.

zhoen said...

Works as a shibboleth. "They're so immature," is a phrase only used by the maturity challenged. For instance. "My IQ is..." fills much the same function.

heather said...

as far as i'm concerned, unless you have been asked, you drop iq points every time you mention them. who the he77 really cares anyway?