Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Deltango Vale

SL and IQ

Recommended Posts

If browswers reflect the IQ of their users, what about Second Life?

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-14370878

Several years ago, Mitch Kapor called Second Life residents a bunch of kooks and weirdos. He was hopeful that Second Life would become more mainstream. Indeed, he was largely responsible for much of the Disneyfication that occurred in SL from 2007 to 2010.

I reflect upon a list of kooks and weirdos: Bobby Fisher, Richard Feynman, Coco Chanel, Vincent van Gogh, Virginia Woolf, Richard Branson, Bill Gates, Jimi Hendrix, Alan Turing, Rothko, Georg Cantor, Michelangelo, Charles Babbage, Mozart, Rene Descartes, Trevor Baylis, Roman Polanski... and it strikes me that some of the brightest and most creative minds in the history of the human race were considered kooks and weirdos.

Are SL residents a bit crazier than the average population? Yup. Brighter? Yup. Does this make sense? Yup. Is Linden Lab aware of this exceptional pool of talent and creativity in Second Life? I wonder.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It never ceases to amaze me the talent that is spent making SL more fun, livable, beautiful, challenging, dark, light, and amazing.  It is a wonderland in many ways

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The problem with making a list of well-known kooks and weirdos is that the rest of the real kooks and weirdos go on unnoticed in the crowd with the "normal" people.  Like us.  And we all know labels and classifications are always completely, 100% accurate, always.  Even more so when in graph form.

The older I get the more I believe the only genuinely intelligent people are the ones that withdraw themselves from society and become hermits.  I mean, how else could you deal with all the idiocy?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yeah, well make sure the Hermitage has a good Internet connection. You drop out of 'Curiouser' and I'll have nothing to look forward to in the mornings.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have a hunch Michel de Montaigne would have loved SL :)

"In 1571, he retired from public life to the Tower of the Château, his so-called 'citadel', in the Dordogne, where he almost totally isolated himself from every social and family affair."

His did this to escape the religious wars that were again sweeping across Europe. (The following year saw the St. Batholomew's Day Massacre in France.)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michel_de_Montaigne

I wonder how may people today seek to escape the general lunacy of RL by retreating to SL?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I seldom admit to myself it's an escape, though it does meet all the definitions of same. I certainly look forward to being there. I was thinking about that this evening, actually. I found myself in a smiling mood thinking about something that had happened there. That can't be a bad thing. The smile may have been induced by SL but it was present in RL. Ishtara commented about the effect of smiles on brain chemistry in a thread of mine sometime back.

 

Montaigne did well to withdraw when he did. There are few darker shadows on that period than the St. Bartholomew's Day Massacre.

 

 

Edited to replace an un-referenced pronoun with a name.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

the study actually has a solid coorelation but it's not the one in the headline...

users with higher intelligence and/or greater experience* are more likely to choose something past the default options, and indeed run operating systems that don't run IE.... while users with less experience, or those who can't gain understanding as quickly are going to stick with what they already have and not explore alternate options. and lets face it, on the internet, even now, IE is still the de facto lead dog (although it's losing that lead consistently).

I also note that it says IE6, which means this study was run near the begining of Apples rebranding campaign as a status symbol, as well as some major growth in linux market share. which means that at that point if you ran something other than windows you were probably an artist or a programmer, both of which score better on IQ tests.

then add the unfamiliarty of new users with how things online work, and it slows down response time (which is factored into most IQ tests).

net result: experience and intelligence == not settling for the basics (in general)

 

*even just users who have been on the internet long enough to already know all/most the right answers to common IQ test questions

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think what society defines as "weird" & "kooky" is a sign of someone who is willing to think differently & act differently than the norm. Sometimes this willingness comes from someone who doesn't understand that they're odd themselves. Other times it comes from someone who has evaluated societal norms & decided they're not worth adhering to so strictly. Being able to think "outside the box" is a sign of higher intelligence. Seeing possibilities that others don't see, evaluating multiple options for behavior, & choosing a unique alternative requires a higher than normal intelligence.

Sometimes geniuses just don't think like other people do either.  Albert Einstein liked a particular style of comfortable sweater, so he had a bunch of the same style in his closet. This way he didn't have to waste time thinking about what to wear each day. That was an odd thing to do, but it was a reasonable choice from his perspective.

http://205.188.238.109/time/time100/poc/magazine/albert_einstein5a.html

Of course, SL is a fairly difficult tool to learn how to use effectively, so it tends to weed out people who can't learn new tasks easily. Thank goodness, IMO. If I wanted to associate with the common masses, I'd go to a wrestling match or soap opera fan forum.

Recently the CEO of Zappos explained on "The Colbert Report" that his company actually prefers hiring employees who are a little weird..."a little weird, not psycho snake weird.”

http://www.geekwire.com/2011/stephen-colbert-tony-hsieh-cult-leader

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You assume I counted myself among the genuinely intelligent?  I don't.  Boxes of rocks beat me at chess regularly.  But it's nice to know where one stands in the grand scheme of things.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ah, would that we could all take comfort in the belief that we are all above average, and that we are all "special." Sadly, the likelihood is that the average IQ of SL users is 100 and half of us fall below that and half above. There's ample research out there, and has been for many years, that supports the notion that we all believe we are above average intelligence but of course, statistically, that can't be true!

Quick test: Hands up if you think you are smarter than 2/3rds of the people you meet in SL (or in the forum). Hands down.

Now, hands up if you think you are dumber than 2/3rds of the people you meet in SL (or in this forum). Anyone holding their hands up? Hmmm.

We also tend to believe that we are "unique" and "special," along with being "non-conformist," "out-of-the-ordinary," "weird" or "kooky." Again, hands up anyone who thinks they are ordinary, common, uninteresting, and have no real value in life other than living from day to day, "hanging on in quiet desperation," but happy in their dullness.

Hand down.

You see, we all want to be different - and to some extent clearly we are - but we also want to be special, and most of us are not. That's OK because there's nothing wrong with mediocrity. It's just hard to accept it. The marvellous thing about SL is we can all become big fish in a small pool, either in-world or by contributing (as we are) to the forums.

So much as we all want to imagine ourselves as being at that that top shallow end of the human bell curve, the truth is that most of us will be sitting in, and possibly have, a big fat middle.

Oh, and the first person who joins this thread with the words "well, I'm a member of Mensa, and let me tell you..." should be smacked around the head with a 100x100x100 megaprim and made to eat their own brains (which is, I am told, the definition of "a tenured professor.")

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


Sigmund Leominster wrote:

Now, hands up if you think you are dumber than 2/3rds of the people you meet in SL (or in this forum). Anyone holding their hands up? Hmmm.

 

I doubt I'm dumber than two thirds of the people on this forum but I know for a fact I'm less knowledgeable regarding Second Life, and building, and scipting, than probably something close to that number.


You see, we all want to be different - and to some extent clearly we are - but we also want to be special, and most of us are not. That's OK because there's nothing wrong with mediocrity. It's just hard to accept it. The marvellous thing about SL is we can all become big fish in a small pool, either in-world or by contributing (as we are) to the forums.

I couldn't possibly disagree more.  I (and from what I can tell most of the people I"ve become close to here) don't give a damn about being different or special. Yes, sometimes, it gives people with a talent a way to show that talent that might not be available to them in RL. Writers. Singers. Photographers. Cinematographers

For me, and for those people I'm closest to, the 'marvelous thing' about Second Life is that we can engage each other, one to one. That we can enjoy the creativity, the humor, the whatever, that each of us brings. We care notthing for the size of the pond nor the size of the fish (although it's a super ultra rare I do kinda get excited).

[added content]

I had been thinking about your post and I was going to add that yes, when you feel that someone else thinks well of you, it's nice. I don't think many are immune to that. I certainly am not. But then I read you more carefully and picked this quote: "You see, we all want to be different - and to some extent clearly we are - but we also want to be special, and most of us are not.". I won't argue with whether we all want to be different; some might pay more attention to that than others, but I'll accept that statement as if not a fact at least a likely hypothesis. I don't think that 'to some extent' we are different: I think we all are different period.

The second part of the sentence I have problems with. I can only assume that when you say 'we all want to be special' you are thinking of special as being like the winner of 'American Idol' or something. I know a lot of people do think about things like that and even want to be special that way, but I am pretty sure a whole Hell of a lot more are perfectly happy being at least a little special to someone. I really doubt that more than a tiny percentage of SL residents are in Second Life so they can be 'someone special'. I'd guess that percentage to be about the same as in real life. Small. Most of us feel all the specialness we need when we pull in the driveway in the dark and see the porch light come on.

 

Edited for spelling/punctuation

Added contact much later. Not sure why. Was bugging me. 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

"Boxes of rocks beat me at chess regularly" this made me LOL

I'd highly suspect that SL users would be found to have a higher than normal IQ on average :matte-motes-smug:

It takes a fair bit of smarts just to get in the door, you know, get started up & arrive with your avatar inworld.

Then it takes more smarts to "get it" so you stick around to have fun with it!

I could be bias but hey :matte-motes-grin:  hehe

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


Janelle Darkstone wrote:

You assume I counted myself among the genuinely intelligent?  I don't.  Boxes of rocks beat me at chess regularly.  But it's nice to know where one stands in the grand scheme of things.

 

I assume NOTHING.

Really? Boxes of rocks? I think I have some chess cheats. I'd be happy to send them along. For example, your typical box of rocks will look away and say, "Huh?" when  you point over it and say "What's that?". It will not remember when it looks back at the board that it used to have a rook in that corner.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

IQ? I don't know how the SL population compares to the general population. My guess would be about the same of every type. 

However Second Life offers an outlet for the imagination for many who for some reason have no such outlet in their real lives. So there is much more of that to be seen more easily (in most cases) than in one's immediate surroundings in real life.

It's a great outlet for introverts, too.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

2/3rds huh? I dunno about smarter, but if I assume the average applies here, and we're talking about IQ scores then I could say yes.... too bad I'm at least smart enough to say that IQ tests are only  really a good measure of ones ability to take tests. as a for instance, a person I knew with an unweighted 162, who was unable to care for theirself. There are lots of different kinds of "smart" that they just don't test for... and I know I'd be ~60 in at least one of the proposed categories.

I'm also just smart enough not to assume the average here.... certain activities select for certain capacities.... both positive and negative. experience and purpose can blur those lines a bit though. for instance there aren't many PhD mathematicians with low IQ scores, but there are some. there probably aren't a lot of them in SL either though =)

at a guess, I'd estimate that the average person that regularly uses a computer outside of necessity would also score a bit higher on an actual standard IQ test.... I'd also estimate that that same group would score a bit lower on a social aptitude test.... taken as a whole, anyways (I know I would).

I think the saying is "book smart, street dumb".... thank heavens experience helps fill in all sorts of gaps.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


Mickey Vandeverre wrote:

SL is used by many, many different types of people.

 

This.

And as such you're going to find a fairly wide range of intellect.

That said, SL does seem to be fairly ethnicly homogenius, with an unusual ratio of Caucasians. So its not as culturally diverse as it could be, even while it may be linguisticly diverse due to the presence of Europeans.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Seeing that the majority of humans are not very intelligent or creative, and closer in relation to a well-trained chimpanzee than to someone like Albert Einstein, one has to conclude that a high level of intelligence and/or creativity is an aberration that could even be called a mental disorder.

But intelligence is only partially genetic. It has also been linked to a difficult and challenging environment. Human migration to places with environmental challenges and seasonal hardships has greatly boosted technological innovation and progress. Nowadays, people in the Western World lead the predictable and comfortable life of zoo animals, so it is not very surprising that most of them turn out to be complacent and mentally lazy.

This is partially offset by a superior education, compared to past centuries anyway, and increasingly complex job requirements. But it's nonetheless the outsiders -- the kooks, weirdos, misfits, and deviants -- who grow up under the most difficult and challenging conditions. Would Bill Gates be one of the richest people in the USA if he had grown up as an attractive jock? Would Alan Turing have made fundamental contributions to computer science if he had not been gay? I doubt it.

Disadvantaged people always had to try harder and learn more tricks than others, and many people who choose to train and develop their brains don't have much else to work with. And yet they're not necessarily more successful, because society tends to reward those who are pleasant to look at (and socially well-adjusted, which usually goes hand in hand). It is therefore not surprising that an online place for misfits and dropouts is full of fairly intelligent human specimens.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Pussycat Catnap wrote:

... 

That said, SL does seem to be fairly ethnicly homogenius, with an unusual ratio of Caucasians. So its not as culturally diverse as it could be, even while it may be linguisticly diverse due to the presence of Europeans.

 

I also see a strong preference in skin color in SL, but I'm not sure if I'd call this color Caucasian. Perhaps my monitor calibration is off, but the most popular skin tones in SL are within a range that I usually associate with Southern Europe, the Middle East, South America, South Asia and Polynesia, as well as Native American.

Typical Central European, Baltic and Scandinavian skin tones are quite rare in SL. They're offered in many stores, but us "white" people tend to associate a strong tan with good health and don't want to be so awfully pale. For the same reason, we spend a great deal of time on tanning beds and risk skin cancer.

The majority of SL avatars look like the entire human species might look in the future, after we've mixed and mingled, migrated and married all over the globe for another hundred generations or so. Which I personally think is a good thing. Nonetheless, I'd like to see a lot more unusual and inhuman skin colors in SL, seeing that we are not bound to the limitations of RL in here. That's why I chose to be pink, and occasionally various shades of blue.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

there arent any scientific studies to suggest that traits or sexual orientation are co-related to higher or lower IQ's.

we all like to think we are a cut above the rest.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yeah, keep making wild claims about things that you don't know anything about in the hope of getting detailed and well thought out responses, which you can then dismiss with another snotty remark that takes you less than a second to type up. I don't play this game anymore. It's not worth my time and I know how it inevitably ends.

PS: I discourage everybody from replying to this person, who is merely trying to get a rise out of people in order to play the AR game. He just ARed one of my previous posts, in which I cited him as an example for one end of the wide intelligence spectrum found among SL residents. I've picked him because he is the author of the most offensive and intolerant remarks that I've ever read in this forum, and yet I've never ARed any of his anti-gay and anti-transgender comments. That's an utterly pathetic thing to do, imho.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


Ishtara Rothschild wrote:

Yeah, keep making wild claims about things that you don't know anything about in the hope of getting detailed and well thought out responses, which you can then dismiss with another snotty remark that takes you less than a second to type up. I don't play this game anymore. It's not worth my time and I know how it inevitably ends.

PS: I discourage everybody from replying to this person, who is merely trying to get a rise out of people in order to play the AR game. He just ARed one of my previous posts, in which I cited him as an example for one end of the wide intelligence spectrum found among SL residents. I've picked him because he is the author of the most offensive and intolerant remarks that I've ever read in this forum, and yet I've never ARed any of his anti-gay and anti-transgender comments. That's an utterly pathetic thing to do, imho.

im not playing your game, with your snide remarks.

you were breaking the TOS by singling me out by name.

 

 

 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Interpersonal Disputes or Personal Negative Commentary: If you have a personal disagreement, do not post about it on the Second Life community pages. Residents who have personal differences have other channels of communication available to them — private messaging in the forums, IM within Second Life, or chatting within Second Life. 


Please follow the guidelines. If this fighting continues I'll issue warnings to people participating in it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Having seen the huge population boom of '07 and partially in '08, I've seen an amazing selection of people come and go. One of the things I began to love during that time was seeing people who didn't understand Second Life, virtual worlds, asset servers, and the rest of the balony.

SL (being computer-based technology) was initially quite limited in the types of people it attracted; mostly art/tech-types, some RL-escapists and a handful of educators (and some exceptions). Over time (and with help from projects like CSI, Gossipgirl, RFL, a billion other RL-newsworthy happenings) people started to wander over to see what was happening. '07 and '08 was FULL of people who were consumers of content, rather than the pioneers who quickly became creators.

People initially needed high IQs (and/or high determination, and probably a handful of other factors) to 'get' SL, and even more to stick with it for a year or more. I'm glad we've reached the point where the bar is much lower, it makes the world a far richer place. A low IQ isn't leprosy, having a low one isn't necessarily a bad thing (averages after-all imply that 50% must fall below the bar), it just means people have to work harder to understand this bizarre world of ours. SL makes people smarter, turns the computer-illiterate into expert troubleshooters (I mean, you'd have to be), and even the fashion-unconcious eventually become master prim-resizers.

The trick is encouraging growth regardless of the numbers people assign to them. People are awesome.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...