My brother-in-law got me a fun T-shirt displaying this text:
70 4D4P7 70
I’ll let you wrestle through it, as that’s part of the fun.
There’s a little problem, however.
It’s wrong. Now, I don’t know if the late great Hawking said this, I haven’t checked as yet. However, the definition itself is wrong.
Fundamentally, there are many things that can’t adapt to change. In fact, I know quite a few people, generally ex-employees, that do their best to resist change. That’s partly why they are “ex” employees.
Despite their resistance to change, despite their inability to adapt to change, I wouldn’t call them unintelligent.
That’s part of the problem with not having a good definition.
So, with all due (possible) respect to Stephen H., here’s my hat in the ring.
Intelligence is the reflection of the environment within our defined life form.
Let me break this down. It starts off with “Intelligence is…” So that part is easy. Since it doesn’t have to deal with change, it’s directly related to something else. So measurement should be easier. Not easy. Easier.
Next, it’s a reflection. This makes our job easier, because that means there is going to be a “source” and a “target.” Every reflection requires some form of mirror, and the mirror reflects light from some object (the source) to a mind, making an impression (the target).
What’s the source? It’s the environment. Buckminster Fuller said it best: Environment is everything but me.
Here’s the fun part. Where’s the target? It’s going to be “inside” something.
What is that “something?”
That’s OUR defined life form. This is the trickiest part, because most of the time no one takes the time to define who has the intelligence. If we all agree we’re evaluating the intelligence of a mouse, then there it is. If it’s the entire mouse species, that’s different. If it’s going to be you, that’s one thing. But if it’s going to be a whole bunch of us, that’s very different.
Ever heard of group intelligence? Some feel that groups are not quite as swift as individuals. Now we can test for that. What is the reflection of the environment within the group? The group may have a great reflection, but if they can’t communicate it within themselves very well, then it doesn’t do them much good. They would still be considered “intelligent” by my definition, but as many people have argued through the years, intelligence doesn’t always mean you’re smart.
There you have it. This doesn’t quite answer a lot of the tough questions that are still out there. Check out the post from 6 August 2018. In the meantime, be careful out there.
Be intelligent. Be smart!