Re: Degrees vs. smarts

Eliezer S. Yudkowsky (
Mon, 04 Oct 1999 17:56:18 -0500

Whether or not degrees are relevant depends on the order of the problem you're trying to solve. PhDs are great if you have to solve a problem that only one person in a thousand can handle. If it's one in a million, they count for very little; at one in a billion, they're simply irrelevant. I would estimate PhDs as being between two and four sigmas worth of uniqueness; it's not relevant as a credential to any problem harder than that, because a problem harder than that is going to take a genius so weird that the usual correlation between education and intelligence can't be counted on to apply.

Quod erat demonstrandum.

           Eliezer S. Yudkowsky
Running on BeOS           Typing in Dvorak          Programming with Patterns
Voting for Libertarians Heading for Singularity There Is A Better Way