Re: Venus Automorphs Into Great Mathematician, Loses Psyche

The Low Willow (
Wed, 29 Jan 1997 15:55:40 -0800 (PST)

On Jan 29, 2:09pm, Joy Williams wrote:
} At 10:43 PM 1/29/97 +0100, Eugene Leitl wrote:

} >If a personal property is bell-shaped distributed, and we're
} >interested in the outer right fringe of it, then a double jackpot
} >is highly improbable. Hence the empiric fact that brains and looks
} >do not mix.
} (I'm assuming that was tongue in cheek.)

Tongue in cheek? It's perfectly accurate, the accuracy only possessable
by subjunctive syllogisms. If brains are on one bell curve, and looks
on another independent curve, then being on the far right end of both
(or either end of both) is unlikely, in much the same way that it is
more unlikely to win the lottery two days in a row than only once in
those two days. Most good looking people will be of average
intelligence; most smart people will be of average looks. Most people
will be average in both. (Bell curve implying smoothness and near

If intellectual accomplishment for most people is more influenceable by
training and effort than by genes, then it perhaps need not lie on a
bell curve. Or there could be a dependency -- beautiful people might not put
any effort into being smart, living off of their brains; conversely they
might have more self-confidence, and thus do better in other areas in
life. Which of these two paragraphs reality lies closer to is open to

} >P.S. is not a function of gender, of course.
} Of course not.

I'm sure he wasn't being ironic.

Merry part,
-xx- Damien R. Sullivan X-) <*>

"Government is not reason, it is not eloquence, it is force!
Like fire, it is a troublesome servant and a fearful master."
-- George Washington