Wednesday, July 14, 2010
General intelligence evolved to solve non-recurrent problems, that in a stable environment like a farming village in Ukraine has not much of a value. GI is vital for a persecuted people, that was expulsed form one country after the other (pic: expulsion of Jews from Frankfurt, 1624), from one profession and then from the new one it had acquired. Jews were permanently learning how to survive in a new environment, learning a new trade or new - yet permitted - industry. GI was vital for Jewish travelling salesmen, who faced a new situation each time they visited a farmer.
Common people are perfectly capable when faced with traditional problems, like finding its way our of a forest or feeding a baby, but they are lost when faced with a new problem like answering a test or writing a professional article. Evolution did not prepare them to deal with new situations. I read this in Kanosawa. So, if one wants to evaluate the IQ of an unknown person, without submitting him to a formal IQ test, one should watch him solving a problem he never met before. Maybe operating a new cell phone would do.