Re: What is Intelligence?

Suresh Naidu (
Sun, 29 Sep 1996 02:28:00 -0400 (EDT)

Suresh Naidu
Superconductor in Training

Jesus Saves! Gretsky Scores!

On Sat, 28 Sep 1996, David Musick wrote:

> Robin Hanson wrote:
> "If we talk about improving brains by giving them better software, i.e. better
> concepts and insights, well that is just brains of the same intelligence who
> know more."
> I heavily disagree with this. As we increase the quality of "software" we are
> running in our brains, we become more intelligent. Our intelligence is not
> some static quality. It has very much to do with our existing knowledge and
> our ways of thinking about things, and these things can be changed. Our
> intelligence can increase incredibly as we change our ways of thinking and
> develop more useful knowledge. The nature of the "hardware" of our brains is
> very important too, but the right "software" can make the difference between a
> bumbling moron and a brilliant genius.
I`m not sure if that`s the case, although I certainly hope so. For
example, take raw mathematical skills. While mine are fairly good, I
don`t have a hope of having the same insights into problems as , say
Richard Feynman did. I could practice day and night, and while I would
certainly become better, my hardware just isn`t as good as his was. >
> We all have the ability to increase our intelligence by a tremendous amount by
> constantly developing and refining more powerful thinking skills and
> knowledge. I have been doing this for the past few years, and I am several
> times more intelligent than I was a few years ago, and my rate of progress
> continues to accellerate. It is because I am constantly revising and refining
> my observational and thinking skills. I am rewriting my own software, and I
> am becoming smarter because of it. It requires a great deal of personal
> discipline, but we can make ourselves more intelligent by altering our ways of
> thinking and our ways of gathering information.

Really. Could give me some of the techniques you have been using. I would certainly appreciate any methods of
making myself more intelligent.
How do you alter your ways of taking in information? More diverse media?
How do you improve your observational and thinking skills. I just wrote a
programming competition today, and I watched as I was stumped on one
problem, a couple of people were burning up the score rankings. What
makes a person have insights? > > - David Musick >