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Are humans getting less intelligent?

humans dumber intelligence

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#1    Still Waters

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Posted 12 November 2012 - 11:18 PM

Our intelligence and behaviour requires optimal functioning of a large number of genes, which requires enormous evolutionary pressures to maintain.

Now, in a provocative theory, a team from Stanford University claim we are losing our intellectual and emotional capabilities because the intricate web of genes which endows us with our brain power is particularly vulnerable to mutations - and these mutations are not being selected against our modern society because we no longer need intelligence to survive.

http://www.dailymail...ce-survive.html

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#2    ImaLoner

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Posted 12 November 2012 - 11:36 PM

I don't find it comforting to think that Mike Judge was onto something with Idiocracy.


#3    spud the mackem

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Posted 12 November 2012 - 11:43 PM

View PostStill Waters, on 12 November 2012 - 11:18 PM, said:

Our intelligence and behaviour requires optimal functioning of a large number of genes, which requires enormous evolutionary pressures to maintain.

Now, in a provocative theory, a team from Stanford University claim we are losing our intellectual and emotional capabilities because the intricate web of genes which endows us with our brain power is particularly vulnerable to mutations - and these mutations are not being selected against our modern society because we no longer need intelligence to survive.

http://www.dailymail...ce-survive.html
   I wouldnt bother going to Stanford if thats all they can come up with,total rubbish again.You have to be more and more intelligent to survive in this modern day era.

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#4    Bling

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Posted 12 November 2012 - 11:52 PM

Humans are getting what now?? :passifier:


#5    Ashotep

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Posted 12 November 2012 - 11:59 PM

Less intelligent or just lazy.


#6    White Unicorn

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Posted 13 November 2012 - 12:32 AM

View Postspud the mackem, on 12 November 2012 - 11:43 PM, said:

I wouldnt bother going to Stanford if thats all they can come up with,total rubbish again.You have to be more and more intelligent to survive in this modern day era.

I wouldn't exactly say rubbish since Use it or Lose it is true.... but I believe your last sentence says it all :)


#7    sam12six

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Posted 13 November 2012 - 01:37 AM

View Postspud the mackem, on 12 November 2012 - 11:43 PM, said:

I wouldnt bother going to Stanford if thats all they can come up with,total rubbish again.You have to be more and more intelligent to survive in this modern day era.

I don't see why you think that. Our modern world allows people who would have died as children to live to a ripe old age because our medical technology overcomes the inherent weakness in their genetic code. By the same token, "think fast or die" situations are pretty rare for a modern human.

Don't get me wrong. I'm not saying these guys are right (especially since there's no real definitive way to measure intelligence among modern people, much less a way to apply it to previous generations), just that from a logical perspective our amassed knowledge base as a species may allow individuals to get by with learning less or more slowly than generations where individual knowledge was all that determined whether one would eat dinner or BE dinner...


#8    Likely Guy

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Posted 13 November 2012 - 03:28 AM

Polymaths (people who were good at a lot of things) are dying out.

Eg. My Dad; a carpenter, woodworker, plumber, electrician, car mechanic, heavy duty mechanic, millwright, welder & fabricator, machine operator, tree faller, saw mill designer (the list goes on and on).

We're not getting less intelligent, just more specialized. Sure, there were better people in any of those one fields. Now, those people who were adept in all those fields (or any other list of fields) are getting fewer.

In short, I'd rather have someone with experience, than someone who's an 'expert'.

Edited by Likely Guy, 13 November 2012 - 03:46 AM.


#9    pallidin

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Posted 13 November 2012 - 03:40 AM

Well, according to my wife, I am getting "less intelligent"


#10    Likely Guy

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Posted 13 November 2012 - 03:58 AM

View Postpallidin, on 13 November 2012 - 03:40 AM, said:

Well, according to my wife, I am getting "less intelligent"
No pallidin, she used to give you the 'benefit of the doubt'. She's not doing that anymore. :)


#11    pallidin

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Posted 13 November 2012 - 04:08 AM

View PostLikely Guy, on 13 November 2012 - 03:58 AM, said:

No pallidin, she used to give you the 'benefit of the doubt'. She's not doing that anymore. :)

I like that. :w00t:


#12    Cybele

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Posted 13 November 2012 - 04:08 AM

Significant advances in modern human societies are made by the few. Perhaps in small, paleolithic tribal bands everyone had to do more to chip in.

Modern Western nations will support people who cannot or will not support themselves and their families without government aid. People who would not have been as evolutionarily successful in the past are having more children, and doing so earlier, than those who put their careers and intellectual pursuits first.

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#13    pallidin

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Posted 13 November 2012 - 05:18 AM

View PostCybele, on 13 November 2012 - 04:08 AM, said:

Significant advances in modern human societies are made by the few. Perhaps in small, paleolithic tribal bands everyone had to do more to chip in.

Modern Western nations will support people who cannot or will not support themselves and their families without government aid. People who would not have been as evolutionarily successful in the past are having more children, and doing so earlier, than those who put their careers and intellectual pursuits first.

The "minority" becomes the "majority" by virtue of birth population. Nothing against minorities, just stating a fact.


#14    Taun

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Posted 13 November 2012 - 12:32 PM

I don't know if true intelligence can be accurately measured - heck we don't even really seem to have it defined yet...

However, I do firmly believe that we are becoming much less 'focused'... Our attention spans seem to have been reduced noticibly from earlier generations...

IMO we are not less intelligent, we are just more easily distracted...


#15    WoIverine

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Posted 13 November 2012 - 01:12 PM

What we eat has a huge effect on how intelligent we are. If you're not healthy, it impacts everything.






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