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Edinburgh

Things are moving so fast in genetic research on intelligence that one cannot take a coffee break without missing important announcements. By way of small compensation, even the biggest breakthroughs are based on previous breakthroughs, so most stories in science are about a pattern of results rather than a single paper, and that pattern eventually becomes familiar territory, an increase in understanding which, once digested, may eventually become the new orthodoxy.

Where are we now, in the continuing story of the genetics of intelligence? Usually, one goes to a meta-analysis to discern the pattern of results.

A combined analysis of genetically correlated traits identifies 187 loci and a role for neurogenesis and myelination in intelligence. W. D. Hill, R. E. Marioni, O. Maghzian, S. J. Ritchie, S. P. Hagenaars, A. M. McIntosh, C. R. Gale, G. Davies & I. J. Deary

https://www.nature.com/articles/s41380-017-0001-5

They say:

Intelligence, or general cognitive function, is phenotypically and genetically correlated with many traits, including a wide range of physical, and mental health variables. Education is strongly genetically correlated with intelligence (r g  = 0.70). We used these findings as foundations for our use of a novel approach—multi-trait analysis of genome-wide association studies (MTAG; Turley et al. 2017)—to combine two large genome-wide association studies (GWASs) of education and intelligence, increasing statistical power and resulting in the largest GWAS of intelligence yet reported. Our study had four goals: first, to facilitate the discovery of new genetic loci associated with intelligence; second, to add to our understanding of the biology of intelligence differences; third, to examine whether combining genetically correlated traits in this way produces results consistent with the primary phenotype of intelligence; and, finally, to test how well this new meta-analytic data sample on intelligence predicts phenotypic intelligence in an independent sample. By combining datasets using MTAG, our functional sample size increased from 199,242 participants to 248,482. We found 187 independent loci associated with intelligence, implicating 538 genes, using both SNP-based and gene-based GWAS. We found evidence that neurogenesis and myelination—as well as genes expressed in the synapse, and those involved in the regulation of the nervous system—may explain some of the biological differences in intelligence. The results of our combined analysis demonstrated the same pattern of genetic correlations as those from previous GWASs of intelligence, providing support for the meta-analysis of these genetically-related phenotypes.

However, the authors not only give us a meta-analysis, they follow the same value-for-money approach traditional for this team: they test their predictions on an independent sample. Keep reading.

Intelligence, also known as general cognitive function or simply g, describes the shared variance that exists between diverse measures of cognitive ability[1]. In a population with a range of cognitive ability, intelligence accounts for around 40% of the variation between individuals in scores on diverse cognitive tests[2]. Intelligence is predictive of health states, including mortality; [3, 4] a lower level of cognitive function in youth is associated with earlier death over the next several decades[5]. Intelligence is a heritable trait, with twin- and family-based estimates of heritability indicating that between 50–80% of differences in intelligence can be explained by genetic factors[6]. These genetic factors make a greater contribution to phenotypic differences as age increases from childhood to adulthood[7]. Heritability estimates derived from molecular genetic data using the GREML-SC [8, 9] method indicate that around 20–30% of variation can be explained by variants in linkage disequilibrium (LD) with genotyped single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs)[10]. Some of the association between intelligence and health is due to genetic variants that act across traits [11, 12]. More recent methods to measure heritability, such as GREML-KIN[13], and GREML-MS[14] using imputed SNPs, have found that some of the heritability of intelligence can be found in variants that are in poor LD with genotyped variants; by taking these into consideration, SNP heritability estimates of 0.54 (GREML-KIN) and 0.50 (GREML-MS)[15] have been found.

For those who, like me, don’t take easily to genetic jargon, just think of all this as computer code. If you look through traditional computer code you will find sub-routines and Go To instructions. Some of the code is embedded in sub-routines, some code acts as signposting, and some code does the essential processing work along the way. All these sections of code can develop a flavour: by the time you get to a distant sub-routine your variable names will have drifted further down the alphabet; line numbers will be higher, the types of calculations will have altered, and will involve the products of farprevious sub-routines. Of course, the genetic code is nothing like this, but linkage can be close or , common or unusual, and if a piece of code gets picked out because it is particularly useful, it can carry some neighbouring useless code with it, like fluff on a toffee. New ways of understanding and analyzing the code are being developed fast, so new findings may well arise when analysis moves from exploratory association work to laboratory manipulations of individual genes in Petri dishes.

The authors got their large sample size by using a crafty technique, combining an intelligence test data sample with the proxy phenotype of educational attainment in another sample, and thus getting far more analytic power. The genetic correlation between intelligence and education is 0.7 which is what assists this alignment and pasting-together technique.

Seven novel biological systems associated with intelligence differences were found.

1 Neurogenesis, the process by which neurons are generated from neural stem cells.
2 Genes expressed in the synapse, consistent with previous studies showing a role for synaptic plasticity.
3 Regulation of nervous system development.
4 Neuron projection
5 Neuron differentiation
6 Central nervous system neuron differentiation.
7 Oligodendrocyte differentiation.

In addition to these novel results, the finding that regulation of cell development (gene-set size = 808 genes, P-value 9.71 × 10−7) is enriched for intelligence was replicated.

In summary, if further proof were needed that these bits of the genetic code were associated with brainpower, the list homes in on everything likely to be required for a fast-thinking powerful biological system.

Here is a heat map of the results, which you will find similar to previous studies. (You may need to click on this image to enlarge it).

Hill Deary heat map

Here is a more detailed picture of the tissues involved:

Hill Deary specific tissues

They canter to a conclusion:

We found 187 independent associations for intelligence in our GWAS, and highlighted the role of 538 genes being involved in intelligence, a substantial advance on the 18 loci previously reported.
We used our meta-analytic GWAS data to predict almost 7% of the variation in intelligence in one of three independent samples. The range of similar estimates across the three independent samples was 3.6 to 6.8%. Previous estimates of prediction have been ∼5% at most.

We report the novel finding that the polygenic signal across our GWAS dataset clusters in genes involved in the process of neurogenesis, genes expressed in the synapse, and genes involved in the development of the nervous system, as well as those involved in myelination within the central nervous system due to their role in oligodendrocyte differentiation. This provides a rationale for a theory of how genetic differences, via their influence on physiological differences, contribute to variation in intelligence.

The finding of neurogenesis gene-set enrichment for intelligence is persuasive, because neurogenesis has been linked to cognitive processes—particularly pattern separation and cognitive flexibility—in rodent models. New neurons are continually made in humans in the subgranular zone of the hippocampus and in the striatum; in rodent studies, experimentally reducing analogous neurogenesis results in a poorer ability to discriminate between highly similar patterns, whereas increasing the number of new neurons produced results in an increased ability to successfully discriminate between highly similar stimuli.

Oligodendrocyte differentiation was also identified by gene-set analysis as being involved in intelligence differences. The central nervous system of humans contains a very high percentage (~50%) of white matter, which is maintained by the action of oligodendrocytes. Abnormalities in white matter are also associated with psychiatric disorders such as schizophrenia and autism, conditions that have previously been shown to be genetically linked to differences in intelligence. By finding that genes involved in the myelination of the central nervous system are associated with cognitive variation, we provide a molecular genetic basis for the link between white matter tract structure and intelligence.

Finally, we showed, using genetic correlations with 29 other traits, that our meta-analytic intelligence GWAS had a highly similar genetic architecture to that of intelligence alone. The genetic correlations that were produced using the meta-analytic intelligence GWAS did differ for some traits; this was most evident for schizophrenia, for which positive genetic correlations have been observed with education[12], but negative associations with intelligence.

This paper is largely a meta-analysis, but it certainly confirms a picture which has been shown in previous studies. Indeed, I think it brings the picture into much sharper focus, because it provides potential physiological mechanisms and an overall rationale for arguing that the revealed associations are causative. That is the whole point of studying DNA. It is causative, and the predictions being made arise from DNA alone. It is possible that various means of gene expression will account for further variance, and presumably these would count as a particular type of environmental effect: call it a close cousin of genetics. That remains to be shown for human intelligence.

This paper also brings a considerable benefit: it shows that on the basis of DNA alone, it is possible to predict 7% of the variance in intelligence in a new sample. Not enough, you may say, but it is a massive advance on the 0% achieved in previous millennia.

 
• Category: Science • Tags: I.Q. genomics, Intelligence, IQ 
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  1. songbird says:

    Education is a good proxy to start with, to get the easier hits more cheaply. But I think they’ll need to use other methods to carry it much further. Connectomes, real IQ tests, fMRI, slicing up donated brains. Unfortunately, I don’t think the mounting evidence will convince the skeptics, until you can buy intelligence by a pill or genetic engineering. Because only then there will be no incentive to ignore the evidence.

    • Replies: @Daniel Chieh
  2. res says:

    What do you think about the pituitary gland showing up as important yet again? Does anyone have a good explanation of what would be causing that connection?

  3. It’s about time we heard an update from BGI on this. Is Steve Hsu still consulting with them? Anyone?

    • Replies: @Realist
  4. dearieme says:

    Do you know this excellent book?

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Rise-Fall-Modern-Medicine/dp/0349123756

    I ask because in the afterword to the second edition he discusses the “missing heritability” of various health conditions. GWASs, if I remember rightly, commonly account for somewhere about 5% of variation where on other grounds doctors know that heritability is far bigger. Hence his choice of the expression “missing heritability”. He wrote that discussion, I suppose, in early 2011, so there’s been some time for improvement. But has there been much?

    Perhaps one shouldn’t expect IQ to be any more free of “missing heritability”?

    • Replies: @James Thompson
    , @MEH 0910
  5. Realist says:
    @Godfree Roberts

    “Is Steve Hsu still consulting with them? Anyone?”

    As far as I know Steve is still consulting. Here is his web site, if you go back a little ways he has videos addressing your question.

    http://spartanideas.msu.edu/author/hsu/

    • Replies: @utu
  6. @dearieme

    Yet to be discovered heritability, so as to bridge the gap between heritability estimates and GWAS type association studies. Not really “missing”.

    • Replies: @dearieme
  7. dearieme says:
    @James Thompson

    “Yet to be discovered” maybe implies some knowledge of the future. “Missing” describes the status quo.

    Stretching my memory to its rather feeble limits, I think an example he gave was height. Twin studies tell you it’s inherited to an extent of 80% – 90% (presumably that refers to societies free of malnutrition). GWASs account for roughly 5%. It seems to me no surprise that the discrepancy for IQ looks rather like that for height.

    The thing that always strikes me about biology is how unutterably intricate it can be. Perhaps people should stick to simple stuff like Black Holes.

  8. 1) This paper is 2 months old so it’s not ‘new’ (people are now talking about it because of the news articles on it methinks).

    2) Same problems as other GWA studies. Social class stratification confounds the results. The 7 percent ‘explained’ are genetic differences between classes which are functionally irrelevant to cognitive ability and educational attainment.

    The point is that migration history creates correlations between social class and genetic variation, albeit functionally irrelevant to CA or EA.

    In sum, it seems highly likely that genetic differences—albeit ones irrelevant to CA/EA differences—will correlate with social class. This is why contemporary GWAS/PGS find direct (but weak) correlations with SES [2], although interpreted as an effect of genetic variation on SES, rather than vice versa as argued here. Of course, all the correlations account for only small amounts of variance in the respective traits and in a context in which the vast majority of genetic variation is within, rather than between, local groups. But that is all that is needed to account for the tiny correlations found in GWAS/PGS.

    http://sci-hub.tw/10.15252/embr.201744140

    We can also discuss how tests are constructed on the basis of social class, too, which then ’causes’ these test scores due to the sociocognitive-affective nexus among other factors. IQ tests are constructed on the basis of who the constructors believe is or is not ‘intelligent’ and items are removed that don’t fit normality. ”

    https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/0382/3398d781543cd0edcf51f181074f4c3ff35b.pdf

    So it should come as no surprise that performance on them [IQ tests] is associated with school performance. As Robert L. Thorndike and Elizabeth P. Hagan explained in their leading testbook, Educational and Psychological Measurement, “From the very way these tests were assembled [such correlation] could hardly be otherwise.” (Richardson, 2017: 85)

    https://cup.columbia.edu/book/genes-brains-and-human-potential/9780231178426

    “it provides potential physiological mechanisms and an overall rationale for arguing that the revealed associations are causative”

    How? GWA studies don’t show causation (just like heritability estimates) so how would it show physiological mechanisms in pathways for ‘intelligence’?

    “For those who, like me, don’t take easily to genetic jargon, just think of all this as computer code. If you look through traditional computer code you will find sub-routines and Go To instructions”

    Would it be fair to say you’re saying ‘input —> output’?

    Also re GWA studies:

    “As we run larger and larger GWAS, some of the signals that emerge may turn out to reflect the action of modifiable (e.g., environmental or behavioural) exposures, rather than more direct biological effects.”

    http://journals.plos.org/plosgenetics/article?id=10.1371/journal.pgen.1005765

    84 percent of genes are expressed in the brain, so it’s going to be very tough to ‘find these genes’.

    These results corroborate with the results from previous studies, which have shown 84% of genes to be expressed in the adult human brain …

    https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-017-00952-9

    It’s so tough because the BG model is wrong and twin studies are highly flawed.

    http://logosjournal.com/2015/joseph-twin-research/

    http://cyber.sci-hub.tw/MTAuMTAwMi93Y3MuMTQwNQ==/10.1002%40wcs.1405.pdf

    IQ tests are rubbish and they do not test ‘intelligence’ (whatever that is.

    • Troll: Anonym
  9. @dearieme

    “GWASs account for roughly 5%.”

    It’s capturing genetic differences between classes due to social class stratification that are irrelevant irrelevant to cognitive ability and educational attainmentent. Social class stratification is enough explain the small correlations found in GWA studies. The models used are wrong. This is why these studies will not show what people hope they will. It’s an exercise in futility. It’s a waste of time and money.

    • Replies: @Santoculto
  10. Factorize says:

    PMID: 29520040 is a more recent IQ GWAS.

  11. @dearieme

    GWAS generally uncover much more than 5% of the heritability of height, with smaller samples.

    A lot of heritability is “missing” because:

    1- Inheritance doesn’t involve common variants only. Very rare mutations and epigenetic effects cause heritable variation, probably most of it.

    2-Traits like IQ and most things behavioral have no biological definition, so they aren’t real as in real anatomical and physiological features and most of the “found” heritability probably is population stratification as you can see with the “genetic” inter-correlations with other well-being indicators. Unless you believe some alleles code for some some sort of kryptonite with super pleiotropic powers. Doesn’t add up.

    The author’s optimism about such tiny findings will soon get hurt by a new technique that filters irrelevant GWAS hits and only leaves a few informative genes for further exploration.

    https://www.technologynetworks.com/genomics/news/gwas-filter-to-give-disease-research-a-boost-298255

    • Replies: @Factorize
  12. hyperbola says:

    This is more wanking of little credibility or usefulness.

    We found 187 independent associations for intelligence in our GWAS, and highlighted the role of 538 genes being involved in intelligence, a substantial advance on the 18 loci previously reported.
    We used our meta-analytic GWAS data to predict almost 7% of the variation in intelligence in one of three independent samples. The range of similar estimates across the three independent samples was 3.6 to 6.8%. Previous estimates of prediction have been ∼5% at most.

    Apart from combining questionable data sources, the authors propose that 538 genes are required to account for only 7% of variation. If there is only 2 variants per gene, that gives 2 raised to the power of 528 different possible combinations. The whole human race is not of sufficient numbers to find any significance.

    I begin to think that Nature is no longer a credible scientific journal on topics which are “dear to the heart” of jewish racist supremacists.

    The Israel Lobby in Germany | Freemasonry – Scribd

    https://es.scribd.com/document/236970539/The-Israel-Lobby-in-Germany

    The ProSieben / Sat1 Group, which combines the German TV station ProSieben, Sat.1, Kabel eins, N24, 9Live and which are especially designed for women transmitter Sixx under one roof, is in possession of the Jew Haim Saban. The Axel Springer Foundation, which was part of the Axel Springer AG conducted from 1981 to 2010 by the Jew Ernst Cramer. After Cramer’s death Friede Springer himself took over as CEO. Friede Springer is a Zionist and got 2000 even the Leo Baeck Prize, the highest award of the Central Council of Jews in Germany. CEO of Axel Springer AG is the Zionist Dopfner Matthias, who has held a position at the Aspen Institute Berlin at the same time. The Aspen Institute is an American lobby, which was founded after WW2 propaganda purposes. The Institute is managed by Trustees, the President and CEO is the Jew Walter Isaacson……

    Nature publisher to merge with Springer

    https://www.timeshighereducation.com/news/nature-publisher-to-merge-with-springer/2017985.article

  13. Factorize says:
    @dearieme

    “Predictive Correlation” Correlation between actual and predicted height of 0.61 or 0.6399 (100k SNPs). Variance explained 40.9% using 50k SNPs.

    GCTA heritability for the top 50k SNPs
    or height,h2=0.5003±0.0209

    Height Heritability in European populations of roughly 80%.

    https://www.biorxiv.org/content/biorxiv/early/2017/10/07/190124.full.pdf

    2 million height GWAS on the way
    For height, the variance explained increased from ~24.6% using 3,290 GWS SNPs to ~34.7% (s.e. 1.9%) using ~15,000 SNP with p<0.001.

    h2snp estimates of height ~50%

    https://www.biorxiv.org/content/early/2018/03/02/274654.full.pdf+html

    Perhaps 0.10 explained by dominant SNPs, also non-additive.
    I will am anxious to see what the best predictor could achieve with everything on board.
    UKBB will be fully exome sequenced within a year, so it will be exciting to see what
    rare and/or common exome variants might add to the prediction.
    Can't wait to see whole genome sequencing on UKBB.

  14. Realist says:
    @RaceRealist88

    “IQ tests are rubbish and they do not test ‘intelligence’ (whatever that is.”

    It’s telling that you don’t know what intelligence is.

    • Replies: @RaceRealist88
  15. @Realist

    What is ‘intelligence’? There’s no consensus. Is it scoring highly on IQ tests? What’s that say about a theory of individual intelligence differences and a theory of what intelligence is as a whole? ‘Intelligence research’ is plagued by this.

    • Replies: @Realist
  16. phil says:
    @RaceRealist88

    In the article Hill et. al refer to intelligence as general cognitive function. One indication of the validity of the concept is the finding of Schmidt, Oh, and Shaffer in Personnel Psychology that,
    based on 100 years of research, general mental ability is the single best predictor of job performance.

    “The Validity and Utility of Selection Methods in Personnel Psychology: Practical and Theoretical Implications of 100 Years of Research Finding”.

    Then there is Garett Jones’ finding in Economic Systems that IQ is the single most robust regressor for explaining differences in the growth of total factor productivity across countries. Jones was careful to make sure that the results were not simply a case of reverse causality.

  17. utu says:

    Nothing to write home about.

    Education is strongly genetically correlated with intelligence (r g  = 0.70).

    How do they know that this is rg – genetic correlation? From twin, parent-child studies? Certainly not from genes they studies here which after all could explain only 7% of whatever they called intelligence:

    We used our meta-analytic GWAS data to predict almost 7% of the variation in intelligence

    Why variation instead of variance? Is it because it is not exactly variance and their legal department advised against using this term? If so what is variation?

    Has intelligence already become synonymous with IQ test scores in Nature? So goes Nature.

    The reason some people are willing to conflate IQ test scores with intelligence is because among others IQ test scores correlate (in a normal sense not as rg) with education. By stating then that intelligence correlates with education does not add anything new beyond repeating the stipulation that IQ score=intelligence.

    The paper gets high CTAR score (CTAR=circular thinking and reification).

  18. Realist says:
    @RaceRealist88

    Intelligence is the ability to solve complex problems.

  19. For me the best book on how western people developed their intelligence, whatever the definition, is
    ⦁ William H. Calvin, ‘De opkomst van het intellect, Een reis naar de ijstijd’, Amsterdam 1994 (The Ascent of Mind. Ice Climates and the Evolution of Intelligence’, 1990)
    In any ice age just the most intelligent survived.
    There may have been hundreds;

    • Replies: @res
  20. MEH 0910 says:
    @dearieme

    What’s Behind Many Mystery Ailments? Genetic Mutations, Study Finds

    With a database of electronic health records and DNA samples, a team of scientists has found that 3.7 percent of patients in a hospital system carried a genetic variant linked to a disease. It’s possible that as many as 4.5 percent of cases of apparently nongenetic diseases, from infertility to kidney failure, are the result of such mutations.

    • Replies: @res
  21. mikemikev says:

    What would happen if you used these genes (identified in White British) to predict intelligence of individuals in other races? I’m guessing other races have a few roughly unique brain genes, but most of the variation is common. The popular “discrimination” model of racial differences must be based on appearance genes, since adopted children develop racially correlated IQs. We could assume this study largely excludes racial appearance genes. So if it predicted IQs almost as well among other races we could conclude racial IQ differences were genetic. And if not then it may still be genetic due to race specific brain genes.

    • Replies: @James Thompson
    , @res
  22. Education is strongly genetically correlated with intelligence (r g  = 0.70).

    Sorry, stopped reading right there. Did they bother to define”education?”

    Do they have any clue that there are fundamental differences between schooling and education?

    As dumb as I am, I’ve always been appalled at the dummies in schools. Most somewhat trainable, but next to none educable.

    • Replies: @Peter Johnson
  23. @Realist

    And your score on the test is a reflection of this, correct? Is there a theory of intelligence? Individual intelligence differences? Let’s say I agree with your extremely simple definition: how do you turn that into a theory?

    Natural selection lowers genetic variation in traits important for survival. Intelligence is important for survival. Therefore intelligence should have low variation in humans.

  24. @Realist

    I do suppose it it complex to survive an ice age.

    • Replies: @Realist
  25. dearieme says:
    @RaceRealist88

    “Therefore intelligence should have low variation in humans.” And yet anyone who has actually met humans knows that this is not so.

    • Replies: @RaceRealist88
  26. szopen says:
    @RaceRealist88

    Natural selection lowers genetic variation in traits important for survival. Intelligence is important for survival. Therefore intelligence should have low variation in humans.

    Ability to run fast is important for survival. Therefore running speed should have low variation in humans.

    Strength is important for survival. Therefore…

  27. @szopen

    Good examples but does that mean that natural selection doesn’t decrease variation in traits important for survival? The argument is sound. It does so by getting rid of deleterious alleles which then lowers genetic variation. Ronald Fisher and others have confirmed this: It is a basic principle of natural selection to lower genetic variation in traits important for adaptation. Of course, genes that do not survive do not reproduce and this lowers genetic variation. This is why humans are 99 percent similar but the 1 percent still matters for variation.

    Further, most genetic variation is irrelevant. Most traits important for survival are buffered against genetic variation, they’re canalized in development or subsumed into developmental plasticity. Natural selection then reduces heritabilities in traits important for survival by eliminating deleterious gene variants.

    And of course I mean ‘real intelligence’ (whatever that is), not ‘intelligence’ as said by ‘IQ tests’ because IQ tests do not test ‘intelligence’.

    (By the way, it’s ability to run for distance, not run fast, that’s important for survival.

    https://notpoliticallycorrect.me/2017/03/18/man-the-athlete/)

  28. @dearieme

    The argument is not flawed.

  29. @RaceRealist88

    Intelligence is important for survival.

    I’ve been looking around, and I’m not buying it. It’s evident that people survive despite having a probable IQ around that of some colonic bacillus.

    Here’s one example out of multitudes.:

    ReBecca Rosoff invites mostly white, male speakers to a conference. So then she warns against boys, whites, heterosexuals, the smart, the middle class, and—Christians. [Then cancels the conference.]

    https://www.lewrockwell.com/political-theatre/catholic-u-prez-makes-big-diversity-mistake/

    Universities have long been known as hotbeds of imbecility. The most successful people I know barely made it through high school not because they were unintelligent but because they couldn’t stand the stifling atmosphere.

    Intelligent people don’t need schools to become educated, are poorly served by them, and those who attend them are actually uneducated and evidently impervious to the process.

    Don’t let schooling interfere with your education.

    Often attributed to Mark Twain, but several others stated the idea before he did.

  30. @jacques sheete

    I’m not talking about the modern world, I’m talking about evolutionary history. What is intelligence? Then how do you work this into a theory of intelligence and a theory of individual differences in intelligence? People throw the word around a ton, but it’s ill-defined with no agreed-upon definition.

    • Replies: @The Anti-Gnostic
    , @szopen
  31. I recognize trends.
    The trend of articles, injected as close to the mainstream as possible, purporting narratives linking intelligence, (and other traits) to genetics has been increasing.

    I can’t find fault with this article’s conclusion:

    …on the basis of DNA alone, it is possible to predict 7% of the variance in intelligence…

    However, there are some troubling inclusions in this narrative, not to mention the apparent prime, though very carefully managed, claim of heredity-determined intelligence.
    While this is not the only example, I just couldn’t figure out how the following sentence (totally in context) could be made to be not nonsensical:
    Education is strongly genetically correlated with intelligence (r g  = 0.70).
    There is no way to make this sentence make sense, either within or outside the overall context of the article/study (to the extent presented).

    I rarely find any caveats qualifying the lack of evidence supporting generation-over-generation persistence.

    So, even the conclusion, while reasonable enough, ultimately only applies to the test subject only.

    Evidence about the relationship to parents’ ‘intelligence‘, and even telling, the relationship to grand parents’ ‘intelligence‘ is extremely thin, and what exists does not support generational persistence.

    I believe pointing this out is relevant because the emerging trend of these types of ‘discussions’ linking intelligence to genetics seems likely aligned with larger media patterns, which are false and one with foresight and knowledge of the trends might well see how from this foundation, entire new avenues of discrimination might be exercised at a societal level.

    I urge skepticism in readers of this material.
    Lack of clear positioning of lack of evidence supporting generational persistence (or solid evidence of generational persistence, quite likely impossible to actually obtain), is the yellow flag for such … news.

  32. @mikemikev

    Put “Piffer” in my search bar

    • Replies: @mikemikev
  33. EH says:
    @RaceRealist88

    1.) You wot, mate?
    2.) I wondered if you had considered the compatibility between the unshared environment fraction and the hypothesis of metempsychosis, and even hylozoicism in light of the Conway-Kochen theorem?

  34. res says:
    @mikemikev

    For an example with height see this note from Steve Hsu’s blog (bolding mine): http://infoproc.blogspot.com/2017/09/accurate-genomic-prediction-of-human.html

    Note Added: Further comments in response to various questions about the paper.

    1) We have tested the predictor on other ethnic groups and there is an (expected) decrease in correlation that is roughly proportional to the “genetic distance” between the test population and the white/British training population. This is likely due to different LD structure (SNP correlations) in different populations. A SNP which tags the true causal genetic variation in the Euro population may not be a good tag in, e.g., the Chinese population. We may report more on this in the future. Note, despite the reduction in power our predictor still captures more height variance than any other existing model for S. Asians, Chinese, Africans, etc.

    The dataset:

    Our primary dataset is the UK Biobank cohort, comprised of almost 500k individual genotypes with multiple phenotypes.

  35. j says: • Website

    A year ago you wrote about “Are We Cleverer Than the Ancients?”. What would be the answer if we apply this newfangled analysis? Are we still cleverer than Athenians? How much? Indeed, this thing advances so fast that soon we shall know too much for our own good.

    • Replies: @James Thompson
  36. res says:
    @MEH 0910

    Their “phenotype risk scores (PheRSs)” idea looks quite intriguing. To put “3.7 percent of patients in a hospital system carried a genetic variant linked to a disease” in perspective, they were looking at rare variants (MAF < 1%). It is important to note this because of an allele like https://www.snpedia.com/index.php/Rs1800562 which exists in heterozygous form in about 10% of Europeans. That example is especially relevant because one of the SNPs they discuss (HFE p.E168Q) is also related to hemochromatosis. Much more on the genetics of that: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3949417/

    This is an interesting observation:

    These findings suggest a blurring of the distinction between dominant and recessive labels for some genes.

    An interesting wrinkle was: “To test for additional rare variants segregating
    with high-PheRS individuals…”. To do this they did whole exome sequencing of 84 people with 4 having hits for previously unrecognized variants.

    I’m not quite sure how to interpret the overall paper (and am interested in hearing other opinions). It looks to me like the primary conclusion is that rare variants explain a fair amount of problem phenotypes. I wish they had looked at their variants in the UKBB (or similar) to see how the usual population prevalence of these variants compared to their 3.7% number for the hospital population.

    On a related note. Reference 7 of theirs is an interesting look at the impact of rare variants on height: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5302847/

    They do some quantification of height effects of certain SNPS:

    The two STC2 height-associated variants are rs148833559 (p.Arg44Leu, MAF=0.096%, Pdiscovery=5.7×10-15) and rs146441603 (p.Met86Ile, MAF=0.14%, Pdiscovery=2.1×10-5). These rare alleles increase height by 1.9 and 0.9 cm, respectively

    Height SD for men is about 7cm so the largest SNP effect is just over a quarter SD. An equivalent IQ effect would be about 4 points.

    More on their dataset and results (the UKBB is revolutionizing genomics!):

    We used the UK Biobank dataset to estimate the contribution of the new height variants to heritability, which is h2∼80% for adult height2. In combination, the 83 rare and low-frequency variants explained 1.7% of the heritability of height. The newly identified novel common variants accounted for another 2.4%, and all independent variants, known and novel together explained 27.4% of heritability. By comparison, the 697 known height SNPs explain 23.3% of height heritability in the same dataset (vs. 4.1% by the new height variants identified in this ExomeChip study).

  37. @RaceRealist88

    In the course of history, some peoples figured out that instead of hunting game animals, you could breed some of them for domesticity and have the meat right there in your back yard instead of chasing it all over the plain. They also figured out you could collect the non-toxic, extractive plants in a single area and breed them for succulence and nutritive density instead of wandering the forest for whatever berries the other animals didn’t get to first. At that point, you can start building settlements and subdivide labor. You’re beyond mere subsistence at that point and can use your free time and big brain to wonder about the natural world and your place in it. The end result: it’s the farmer’s world now; the hunter-gatherers and pastoralists are just along for the ride.

    So I would say “intelligence” is a level of pattern recognition, low time-preference, and abstraction necessary to solve complex, higher-order problems. It exists on a spectrum for individuals and ancestral groups.

  38. @szopen

    Ability to run fast is important for survival. Therefore running speed should have low variation in humans.

    Strength is important for survival. Therefore…

    No, they aren’t important for survival. Evolution made humans bipedal, and they really are all bipedal, this is our survival trait, heritability: 0.

    • Replies: @szopen
  39. @jacques sheete

    Good points, but the IQ crowd’s narrative is that IQ measures a very biologic innate form of intelligence that’s independent from culture, education and experience. If such a thing existed it would likely have its heritability lowered by thousands of years of natural selection.

    • Replies: @utu
  40. @j

    The indication was that we were slightly brighter than the ancients, but the difference was slight, and the error terms large, partly because there are few ancients to study, and only part of their DNA has been recovered.

  41. utu says:
    @Afrosapiens

    If such a thing existed it would likely have its heritability lowered by thousands of years of natural selection

    .

    Why a trait that is independent of environment (” independent from culture, education and experience”) would have diminishing heritability? Any trait that is independent of environment has 100% heritability ex definitione. Do you understand what is heritability?

    • Replies: @Afrosapiens
  42. @utu

    Notice I didn’t say environment but culture, education, experience. It still leaves room for a lot of environmental variation mediated by factors like health and nutrition.

    You’re also probably confusing heritability and genetic determination. Having two legs is genetically determined, the heritability is null because there is no variance. And it’s not yet empirically demonstrated that there is such a thing as innate biological intelligence that varies between individuals, let alone that genetic variation plays a role in differences.

    • Replies: @utu
  43. CanSpeccy says: • Website

    To be honest, it would have been better to have titled this piece More Genes for IQ…, not More Genes for Intelligence, since the connection between IQ and intelligence is still widely questioned, with good reason.

    • Replies: @utu
  44. szopen says:
    @RaceRealist88

    But:

    (1) intelligence is not the only trait helpful for survival,
    (2) We are not sure whether intelligence is always helpful the same amoutn
    (3) There can be costs associated with intelligence which lowers the survival
    (4) Costs and gains can vary from environment to environment, from time to time
    (5) Even within society, there can be different niches (let’s call them social environments), and intelligence might be helpful in some, while (because of associated costs) slightly lower chances of survival in others
    (1)-(5) would mean intelligence should tend to different means in different environments.
    (6) There is a mobility between both geographical and social environments, increasing variance

    • Replies: @RaceRealist88
  45. utu says:
    @CanSpeccy

    The paper gets high CTAR score (CTAR=circular thinking and reification).

    See my comment #17.

    • Agree: CanSpeccy
  46. szopen says:
    @Afrosapiens

    Not sure, if I understand yoru argument. RR gave an argument that if trait helps with survival, therefore natural selection should reduce the variability. I don’t know what you wanted to achieve by giving an example of trait which has zero variability.

    BTW, the argument actually should be notabout aurvivability, but about ability to pass the genes.

    • Replies: @Afrosapiens
  47. Factorize says:
    @Afrosapiens

    Afrosapiens great article!
    Thank you for posting the link!

  48. utu says:
    @Afrosapiens

    Pure sophistry hinging on the indeterminacy of 0 divide by 0. One can postulate that heritability of the trait=(having two legs) is anything one wants. It can be 0 as you want to claim to forward you ridiculous point but it also can be 100%. Anyway this paper, though I am not a friend of this paper, demonstrates that heritability of IQ test scores is greater than 0. This heritability is based on a predictor function that maps gene pattern via polygenic score onto the IQ score scale and thus the usual objections used to question heritability derived from twin studies can’t be raised. This heritability was validated on the independent sample which still may not exclude a possibility of a spurious correlation but probability of it (depending on sample size) is negligibly low. Not sure if they estimated it though. Anyway they have proven that IQ test score is heritable. One may object that it means nothing that even divorce has non-zero heritability and thus in societies that do not have marriages or divorces the heritability of divorce can’t be established. To which one would respond that probably heritability of intelligence on a Haitian sample also can’t not be established as intelligence is a trait that is not very much in usage there.

    • Replies: @Afrosapiens
  49. @szopen

    Not sure, if I understand yoru argument. RR gave an argument that if trait helps with survival, therefore natural selection should reduce the variability. I don’t know what you wanted to achieve by giving an example of trait which has zero variability.

    I’m just saying that when natural selection operates on a given trait, the end result is reduced genetic and phenotypic variance. Walking on two legs instead of crawling or jumping from tree to tree was selected in the human lineage, so it became universal and invariable. Skin color shows the same pattern, with very low variation locally, because it was selected for its survival value.

    One of the problems with “IQ” is that it’s not a quantity, a score of 120 isn’t twice as smart as a score of 60, and the normal distribution is made up so we can’t really tell how whatever it measures is actually distributed in the population.

    BTW, the argument actually should be notabout aurvivability, but about ability to pass the genes.

    Well, if the model of thousands genes of very small effect is true, this ability must be low vs genetic drift.

    • Replies: @szopen
    , @Realist
  50. @utu

    Don’t be mean because I schooled you.

    The heritability of having two legs is zero. Or more accurately, heritability estimates aren’t pertinent in those traits that are normally invariant.

    As for the likelihood that the correlations are spurious, this likelihood is very high. And it’s not specific to IQ, it’s a widely shared opinion in genetics that most GWAS hits aren’t pertinent and that more refined techniques are needed to uncover causal mechanisms.

    • Replies: @utu
  51. Realist says:
    @jilles dykstra

    Yes, and go to the moon and a million other things that unintelligent people can’t do.

  52. Art says:

    Does culture drive genetics, or does genetics drive culture, or are they a push push phenomenon – that strives to meet the environment.

    Considering GWAS – is the genetics of human cooperation, a major factor and pusher of Christian Western culture?

    Think Peace — Art

  53. Realist says:
    @RaceRealist88

    Your understanding of genetics is abysmal along with some others on this blog.

  54. Realist says:
    @jacques sheete

    You’re wrong complex situations as found in STEM studies require intelligence and a college education.

  55. szopen says:
    @Afrosapiens

    I’m just saying that when natural selection operates on a given trait, the end result is reduced genetic and phenotypic variance.

    Heh, but this is then the same argument as RR, and your example with two legs does not constitute as refutation of my counterexamples.

    Or maybe I should be more clear: over the long run, sure, but my examples were intended to show taht there are still traits for which there is obvious variance (and quite large) meaning that the same could be for intelligence. That the “end result” is reduced variance does not mean the trait cannot have higher variance in the meantime.

    Especially when it oucld be argued that the trait value can actually rise in time.

    BTW, you are actually first saying that scores in IQ are made up. That means that the variance in IQ scores can be as high as we actually want. How then say whether the variance is high or low??

    • Replies: @Okechukwu
  56. Realist says:
    @Afrosapiens

    Not sure, if I understand yoru argument. RR gave an argument that if trait helps with survival, therefore natural selection should reduce the variability. I don’t know what you wanted to achieve by giving an example of trait which has zero variability.

    He is validating his earlier statement that ‘He doesn’t know what intelligence is’…. he has never experienced it.

  57. utu says:
    @Afrosapiens

    0/0 is undetermined. It can be anything. For me it is 100% because genes explain the two-leggedness and for you it is 0% because this is what you want to construct your irrelevant specious bad faith argument.

    This paper demonstrates that one can construct a predictor function that maps polygenic score on IQ test score that can explain 7% of variance and that can be validated on an independent set. The discussion is over.

    IQ test score is trait that is heritable within the sample used and since the sample is huge and thus representative for Europeans there is no question it is true for all Europeans.

    Your only recourse aa a Negro of Haitian type is to claim that this result somehow does not apply to Negroes. You can postulate racial differences but then you must invoke the concept of race that you claim does not exist. This way or another you are fucked. You are left with the indomitable Negro argument: deny reality, dindu nuffin when caught red-handed.

    • Replies: @Afrosapiens
  58. David says:
    @RaceRealist88

    Can we get a feature to block any comment containing the word “methinks”?

  59. @utu

    0/0 is undetermined. It can be anything. For me it is 100% because genes explain the two-leggedness and for you it is 0% because this is what you want to construct your irrelevant specious bad faith argument.

    Still not understanding the difference between heritability and genetic determination.

    This paper demonstrates that one can construct a predictor function that maps polygenic score on IQ test score that can explain 7% of variance and that can be validated on an independent set. The discussion is over.

    IQ test score is trait that is heritable within the sample used and since the sample is huge and thus representative for Europeans there is no question it is true for all Europeans.

    Your only recourse aa a Negro of Haitian type is to claim that this result somehow does not apply to Negroes. You can postulate racial differences but then you must invoke the concept of race that you claim does not exist. This way or another you are fucked. You are left with the indomitable Negro argument: deny reality, dindu nuffin when caught red-handed.

    Haha, seems like you have trouble with reading and understanding. The 6.8% of variance explained is the highest in three (British) samples, so it’s not only unwarranted to generalize this figure to the British population, but it’s also unjustified to generalize to all Europeans and non-European populations who have different patterns of stratification and gene expression.

  60. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    “and Go To instructions” No. Not really the way a programmer thinks or a way to make sense of genetic jargon.

    goto is considered either harmful or of limited value in a programming language since at least the 1960s. Java and python don’t have the feature. Fortran no longer provides it.

    The author should think harder about politics when he gets sciency. Speciousness can be hidden with a conclusion of some sort although sometimes it’s better to just write a long column without saying much of anything and let the comments section pile on the real data.

    • Replies: @utu
    , @Pericles
  61. utu says:
    @Anonymous

    Nothing wrong with Goto. A code is harder to read and follow but it is a legitimate code. It is a code on lower level than one with subroutines and functions. Each subroutine or functions have an implicit pair of Goto and Return where Return is also a Goto, go to where you came from.

  62. @RaceRealist88

    Enjoyed your comment and appreciate perspective.

  63. The upshot is that the Chinese, clearly more intelligent than whites and outnumber whites with a billion Han Chinese to America’s 200 million whites, must inevitably, short of nuclear war, dominate the inferior races, including us. They are well on the way to doing this, for example completely dominating US high-end high schools and technical universities. I suggest that on the basis of genetics we should go quietly into the night in the interest of, like Neanderthals, allowing the advance of humanity.

  64. Svigor says:

    Education is a good proxy to start with, to get the easier hits more cheaply. But I think they’ll need to use other methods to carry it much further. Connectomes, real IQ tests, fMRI, slicing up donated brains. Unfortunately, I don’t think the mounting evidence will convince the skeptics, until you can buy intelligence by a pill or genetic engineering. Because only then there will be no incentive to ignore the evidence.

    Wanting whites’ children, grandchildren, etc., to not be blamed for black failure seems like a pretty concrete motivation. Even for non-whites who are merely the sort who don’t like seeing people of any color falsely convicted for crimes they didn’t commit.

  65. Svigor says:

    Never mind, I just re-read what you wrote, and you were talking about removing incentives for ignoring the evidence, not looking for motives to notice the evidence. My mistake.

  66. Svigor says:

    The upshot is that the Chinese, clearly more intelligent than whites and outnumber whites with a billion Han Chinese to America’s 200 million whites, must inevitably, short of nuclear war, dominate the inferior races, including us. They are well on the way to doing this, for example completely dominating US high-end high schools and technical universities. I suggest that on the basis of genetics we should go quietly into the night in the interest of, like Neanderthals, allowing the advance of humanity.

    *Kicks Freddy and his spawn into a wood-chipper*

    That’s as far as I’m willing to go in pursuit of that goal, for now.

  67. mikemikev says:
    @Frederick V. Reed

    How much of this is due to Confucius-memorisation try-hard conscientiousness and not actual brilliance? These East Asians certainly take places but how often do they end up demonstrating creative genius? Of course Whites should allow East Asians to replace their kids in the institutions they created because they wouldn’t want to be called “racist” (the actual and only counterargument I’ve heard) and the money they pay made from mass produced copies of our tech doesn’t hurt.

  68. Okechukwu says:

    The only things that vary among humans are those things which have an in situ survival advantage. Skin color, for example. Intelligence has a universal survival advantage so it does not vary between different populations of humans. The brain is a complex organ, and complex organs do not vary between population groups. No group has a better heart or spleen (or brain) than any other.

  69. Okechukwu says:
    @szopen

    Heh, but this is then the same argument as RR, and your example with two legs does not constitute as refutation of my counterexamples.

    But your counterexamples are invalid. Human intelligence abrogated the need to run faster than lions. The same applies to strength. That’s the very reason humans developed tools as an equalizer. If humans relied for their survival on great foot speed and super human strength, none of us would be here now. Notwithstanding the fact that all humans can run fast and perform feats of strength (by human standards) unless they’re old, injured or otherwise infirm.

  70. mikemikev says:
    @Okechukwu

    But evolution involves trade-off between traits, e.g. brains vs. reproductive speed. Check out Rushton’s life history theory. Also genes don’t magically appear in all races simultaneously. Low density isolated races evolve slower. Further, we develop theory after data, not imagine data from theory.

    • Replies: @RaceRealist88
    , @Okechukwu
  71. @mikemikev

    “Check out Rushton’s life history theory.”

    Rushton’s theory is garbage.

    https://notpoliticallycorrect.me/2017/06/24/rk-selection-theory-a-response-to-rushton/

    https://notpoliticallycorrect.me/2018/02/15/do-pigmentation-and-the-melanocortin-system-modulate-aggression-and-sexuality-in-humans-as-they-do-in-other-animals-a-response-to-rushton-and-templer-2012/

    https://notpoliticallycorrect.me/2018/03/13/race-differences-in-penis-size-revisited-is-rushtons-r-k-theory-of-race-differences-in-penis-length-confirmed/

    “Further, we develop theory after data, not imagine data from theory.”

    Rushton’s theory, like most Evolutionary Psychology, is a just-so story. Rushton already had his conclusions in mind. That still didn’t stop his theory from being useless.

    • Replies: @mikemikev
    , @CanSpeccy
  72. mikemikev says:
    @RaceRealist88

    “Intelligence is useful therefore all races have the same intelligence” is the garbage here.

    • Replies: @RaceRealist88
  73. @mikemikev

    Not relevant to my claims about Rushton’s theory.

    What is intelligence? How do you then use the definition of intelligence you use for a theory of individual intelligence differences?

    • Replies: @mikemikev
  74. res says:
    @Okechukwu

    The only things that vary among humans are those things which have an in situ survival advantage.

    You might want to take a few minutes to learn about genetic drift: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Genetic_drift

    complex organs do not vary between population groups

    LOL! Any evidence for that assertion? I am looking forward to playing one or both of “no true complex organ” or “no true variation.” Or perhaps, “I only meant genetic variation” (I guess that is a subclass of “no true variation” though).

    Since I asked you for evidence, I will provide some of my own regarding the heart: Race–Ethnic and Sex Differences in Left Ventricular Structure and Function: The Coronary Artery Risk Development in Young Adults (CARDIA) Study https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4392424/

    • Replies: @Okechukwu
  75. @Okechukwu

    Intelligence has a universal survival advantage so it does not vary between different populations of humans.

    No, a certain level of intelligence – combined with other traits – gives one a survival (and reproductive) advantage in each of the many environments faced by human groups over time. A 70-IQ combined with aggressiveness and speed may have been the sweet spot for Sub-Saharan Africa while a 95-IQ combined with cooperativeness and future-oriented thinking worked in Northern Europe. A different (likely higher) IQ and behavioral traits would worked best in more advanced civilizations.

    Just as in life today, many situations require a minimum IQ to be successful but once that IQ minimum is reached, additional intelligence adds little to the party and other traits become far more important.

    • Replies: @Okechukwu
  76. @Frederick V. Reed

    Now that’s the Fred I love. Cutting and wry.

    Regardless, what the IQ worshippers forget is that is call Survival of the Fittest, Not Survival of Smartest.

    To look at birthrates around the world, it appears that our current environment is best suited to Sub-Saharan Africans. However, that said, it seems to me that the great advantage that the Han have over Europeans and their disaspora is not so much a couple of extra IQ points but the willingness to guard their borders and to not find joy in the sucide of one’s own people.

    • Agree: CanSpeccy
  77. @szopen

    This still doesn’t answer the question of a theory of intelligence or individual differences in it.

    I contest (2). Show me that you’d need differing amounts of ‘intelligence’ (which you’ve yet to define) in different environments. Are you attempting to invoke cold winter theory?

    • Replies: @szopen
  78. mikemikev says:
    @RaceRealist88

    Do you have to crap-flood every comment section with this sophomoric nonsense?

    • Replies: @RaceRealist88
  79. Okechukwu says:
    @Citizen of a Silly Country

    A 70-IQ combined with aggressiveness and speed may have been the sweet spot for Sub-Saharan Africa while a 95-IQ combined with cooperativeness and future-oriented thinking worked in Northern Europe.

    What evidence do you have that Sub-Saharan Africans have an IQ of 70? As far as I can tell, only dumb white racists on the Internet take this myth seriously.

    No sane person would assert than Sub-Saharan Africans are inherently more aggressive than Europeans.

    Speed? Even Usain Bolt can’t outrun a lion or a bear or any number of dangerous carnivores. You sound like an idiot.

    Cooperativeness, eh? I guess that was what caused the thousands of years of butchery and bloodletting in Europe, culminating in 100 million Europeans killed in the 20th century alone.

    By the way, how have Northern Europeans demonstrated this alleged high IQ historically? Weren’t they still dumping their shit out of windows well into the 19th century? Didn’t they refuse to bathe well into the 19th century for fear of catching germs as their “science” dictated? Can you identify any sophisticated ancient civilizations in Northern Europe? How about ancient manuscripts or ancient structures? Before you go there, Stonehenge is a pile of rocks. Lastly, do smart people live in such filth and squalor that various plagues nearly wipe them out?

    • Replies: @CanSpeccy
    , @Pericles
  80. @mikemikev

    Hide my comments. Then you won’t have to read them. Problem solved.

    So you can’t answer my questions? If my comments are so “sophomoric” they should be easy to answer, no?

    • Replies: @mikemikev
  81. CanSpeccy says: • Website
    @Okechukwu

    how have Northern Europeans demonstrated this alleged high IQ historically? Weren’t they still dumping their shit out of windows well into the 19th century?

    LOL. But at least they produced Thomas Crapper, who came up with a means to flush their shit down the sewer and into their main drinking water source, the Thames river in London, for example. But then they had more smart people to figure out ….

    No sane person would assert than Sub-Saharan Africans are inherently more aggressive than Europeans.

    There you are wrong. Not that I assert that sub-Saharan Africans are anything since I have not lived among them. However, it does seem entirely reasonable that people living in different types of community will, as a result of natural selection, differ in emotional and other traits. My own ancestors in the highlands of Scotland lived, as most sub-Saharan Africans live or did live until recently, in smallish tribal groups prone to conflict with other groups at the edges of their traditional territories (same with Amerindians, prior to the Euro invasion). Such conditions may well promote the emergence of aggressive warrior traits. Certainly the Scots, by whom I mean my highland ancestors, the real Scots (not those lowland scum), who until recently like most Africans lived in small tribal groups in continual conflict with their immediate neighbors, tend to be hyper-emotional, and prone to going berserk on the battle field, a trait that made them prized by the military.

    • Replies: @Daniel Chieh
  82. @Okechukwu

    No group has a better heart or spleen (or brain) than any other.

    That’s silly.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/High-altitude_adaptation_in_humans

    The existence of dog breeds is excellent evidence that you can breed for a specific phenotype – though the selection process is admittedly more extreme than anything in nature. Nonetheless, to argue that it is qualitatively impossible, rather than relatively difficult, is sophistry.

    • Replies: @Okechukwu
  83. utu says:
    @Realist

    Several months ago when Steve Hsu published this work on height he sounded very gung-ho that he would do the same with IQ test scores. His approach unlike what GWAS people are doing is more of a brute force. He does not to painstaking analysis of individuals SNPs or their groups. He just looks at all SNPs in the database for a very large sample of individuals and have the algorithm find the smallest subset of them that minimizes rms difference between the trait values and the polygenic score function. This seemed to be straightforward and mathematically correct approach that any mathematician or physicist would do. I had a feeling that GWAS crowd was not enthused by what he was doing. I wonder whether there were pressures put on him to back off and not interlope in to the GWAS people domain.

    Hsu considered linear and 2nd order non-linear polygenic score functions in rms constrained fit scheme. There is only one, perhaps a minor, objection which is that he does a regular regression instead of logistic regression. There is no difference between them if SNPs have only two variants. If however they have three variants mathematizing them as 0,1, and 2 as Hsu does imposes a constrain that might not be valid, i.e., that effect of transition 0-1 is the same as effect of transition 1-2.

    • Replies: @Realist
  84. Okechukwu says:
    @res

    You might want to take a few minutes to learn about genetic drift: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Genetic_drift

    You have the burden of proof. How does genetic drift manifest in tangible terms differentiated intelligence between various populations of humans? It’s not enough to hope or pray for it, you have to prove it. I’m espousing the academic and scientific consensus that intelligence does not vary between human groupings. On the other hand, you are part of a mostly Internet fringe element that takes the contrarian view. So prove it.

    LOL! Any evidence for that assertion? I am looking forward to playing one or both of “no true complex organ” or “no true variation.” Or perhaps, “I only meant genetic variation” (I guess that is a subclass of “no true variation” though).

    Again, you have the burden of proof. Find me just one credible medical doctor anywhere in the world who will assert that certain population groups (“races”) have better or worse vital organs than others. Good luck.

    Since I asked you for evidence, I will provide some of my own regarding the heart: Race–Ethnic and Sex Differences in Left Ventricular Structure and Function: The Coronary Artery Risk Development in Young Adults (CARDIA) Study https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4392424/

    Assuming the study is credible, and many studies published on NIH are pure garbage, it wouldn’t disprove my central thesis that complex organs do not vary among human population groups in their functionality and efficacy. Vital organs aren’t genetic carbon copies, even among family members.

    • LOL: res
    • Replies: @res
  85. @CanSpeccy

    Certainly the Scots, by whom I mean my highland ancestors, the real Scots (not those lowland scum), who until recently like most Africans lived in small tribal groups in continual conflict with their immediate neighbors, tend to be hyper-emotional, and prone to going berserk on the battle field, a trait that made them prized by the military.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_Watch

    I also remember reading French after-action battle reports where it really seemed like the British forces essentially had to try to do everything possible to control their Highlanders from going into a preemptive charge.

    Arguably an success of diversity. The French troops had nothing comparable – their Native American allies were good warriors from stealth, but certainly were not about to take on a charge from screaming highlanders dropping guns liberally on the ground because swording someone is the only way to do it.

    • Replies: @CanSpeccy
  86. mikemikev says:
    @RaceRealist88

    Of course I can answer your questions. I just don’t want to crap-flood the comments with lame and fallacious “intelligence doesn’t exist” and “race does not exist” discussions, PRATT (point refuted a thousand times).

    • Replies: @RaceRealist88
  87. Okechukwu says:
    @mikemikev

    Check out Rushton’s life history theory.

    Rushton was the quintessential racist pseudo-”scientist.” A 5 year old could pick his theories apart.

  88. Realist says:
    @utu

    Several months ago when Steve Hsu published this work on height he sounded very gung-ho that he would do the same with IQ test scores.

    He still does visit his site to see his latest thoughts and research.

  89. @mikemikev

    So do it. I never claimed race doesn’t exist nor that ‘intelligence’ (whatever that is) doesn’t exist. My only claims were thst IQ tests don’t test ‘intelligence’ (they test learned skills more prevalent in certain classes/cultures over others) and that intelligence is currently undefined with no theory. If you can entertain me, do it. If not then block my comments if you won’t provide what I’m asking for.

  90. I’m espousing the academic and scientific consensus that intelligence does not vary between human groupings.

    I don’t think there is a consensus of intelligence not varying between human groupings. On the contrary, there is consensus that intelligence does vary, but disagreement as to why this is so.

    http://www.unz.com/jthompson/isir-what-do-intelligence-researchers/

    • Replies: @Okechukwu
  91. szopen says:
    @RaceRealist88

    This still doesn’t answer the question of a theory of intelligence or individual differences in it.

    Because that was not my goal. I am quite sure some people are more intelligent than others, even if I can’t give exact theory of what it is or how to measure it. The problem with defining or measuring phenomenon does not mean, however, that phenomenon does not exist.

    Are you attempting to invoke cold winter theory?

    No, I am stating an obvious fact.

    In some environment you get a lot of parasites. In some food is more abundant, in some not.

    Do you suggest that intelligence is equally costly and equally valuable in every possible environment?

    • Replies: @RaceRealist88
  92. CanSpeccy says: • Website
    @Daniel Chieh

    I also remember reading French after-action battle reports where it really seemed like the British forces essentially had to try to do everything possible to control their Highlanders from going into a preemptive charge.

    Yeah, a Scottish Highlander gone amuck is quite a thing.

    Environment, social and physical, probably explains a lot of what we take to be national character.

    Chinese, for example, dependent on rice, need to work in a consistent reliable way every day to ensure survival. And because rice cultivation supports such a high population density, the Chinese have had to be smart enough to deal with relatively large and complex social groups.

    Less so, the Scotch highlander tending a few scraggly sheep on a lonely hillside, and leaving manual work to the women so as not to undermine his standing as a “gentleman.”

    That’s why the mania for diversity is insane. Diversity can be preserved only by keeping the nations apart, each with its own cultural and physical environment. Turn the world into a melting pot and you have, well, Amerika — brainwashed, politically correct, obese and increasingly stupid.

    • Replies: @Daniel Chieh
  93. Okechukwu says:
    @Daniel Chieh

    That’s silly.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/High-altitude_adaptation_in_humans

    That’s an example of localized adaption in response to local exigencies. What’s more, it can be measured, it’s quantifiable. The race/intelligence exponents only have theories, hopes, dreams and aching desires, none of which they can ever prove. Anything they propose can be countered with abundant counter evidence.

    Unlike high altitude adaptation, intelligence has an equal survival value in every environment. Therefore it doesn’t vary. In fact the human brain is little changed since modern humans began wandering in and out of Africa. Humans progress by taking advantage of the knowledge and experiences of preceding generations, not through some gigantic leaps in brain power. Simply compare today’s smart phones to the bulky monstrosities from the 1980′s. I assure you, people have not gotten smarter in the years between then and now.

    The existence of dog breeds is excellent evidence that you can breed for a specific phenotype – though the selection process is admittedly more extreme than anything in nature. Nonetheless, to argue that it is qualitatively impossible, rather than relatively difficult, is sophistry.

    Through a similar program of artificial selection, scientists can probably create a race of three fingered humans. But that would never happen in nature. Wolves, the ancestor to dogs and a naturally occurring species, are much more analogous to the human experience. There is certainly no evidence that American grey wolves are differentiated in complex traits like intelligence from their European cousins, despite being isolated from them for hundreds of thousands of years.

    • Replies: @Daniel Chieh
  94. Okechukwu says:
    @James Thompson

    I don’t think there is a consensus of intelligence not varying between human groupings. On the contrary, there is consensus that intelligence does vary, but disagreement as to why this is so.

    Nope. There is a consensus that IQ varies, not intelligence. And even the variations in IQ don’t evidence diminished or enhanced genetic potential for intelligence. In other words, IQ can be learned or assimilated. Scores can rise. Gaps can close. Furthermore, IQ variations are better explained as resulting from factors other than genetics. Genetics is the least plausible explanation.

    I challenge you to prove your allegation of a consensus that innate human intellectual capacity varies between human groupings. No white supremacist pseudoscientists please.

    • Replies: @EH
  95. @szopen

    “Because that was not my goal.”

    So you cannot answer my question and by proxy whatever else you said to me is not relevant. It’ll be relevant once you answer my questions.

    • Replies: @szopen
  96. @Okechukwu

    There is certainly no evidence that American grey wolves are differentiated in complex traits like intelligence from their European cousins, despite being isolated from them for hundreds of thousands of years.

    This is as silly as the notion that “something as complex as the eye couldn’t have evolved.” You can breed for “dumbness” with quite a bit of ease(arguably, this is domestication of animals) by breeding for traits. You can breed for intelligence, so as long as you quantify intelligence in a limited way.

    Certainly intelligence is complex but it can be broken down. If you isolate something like executive function or working memory, its entirely possible to breed for it(and has been done before, thus the German Shepherd). On a more invasive level, mice have been cognitively altered through both genomic addition as well as through neural cell transplantation(and guess what, adding human astrocytes into the “complex” system of the mice didn’t cause chaos, it just made them smarter).

    Heck, you can get cognitive differences simply by injecting neurotransmitter chemicals into people, and there’s no evidence that population groups(or individuals) produce the same precursor hormones, etc.

    But then again, I remember that you have no real interest in reality. So I should save myself the time.

  97. res says:
    @Okechukwu

    central thesis that complex organs do not vary among human population groups in their functionality and efficacy.

    So you chose “no true variation.” Predictability is good (I suppose). Your moving the goalposts all over the place is rather funny. My sense from other discussions is that you are smarter than that. Do you really not see how ridiculous (and non-responsive to my points) your “arguments” are?

    • Replies: @Daniel Chieh
    , @Okechukwu
  98. @CanSpeccy

    It occurs to me that you can even see inherited cognitive profiles that in our equine companions. Although breeding as we understand it wasn’t really a formal thing until the Renaissance, there was definite inheritance in the creation of the medieval destrier in which size and aggression was sought for, as opposed to the smaller and tamer horses for general riding. The Arab(obviously with Arabic origins) was smaller, shyer and more nimble and far more suited for horse archery.

    Only horses with a naturally good disposition were allowed to reproduce, with the result that Arabians today have a good temperament that, among other examples, makes them one of the few breeds where the United States Equestrian Federation rules allow children to exhibit stallions in nearly all show ring classes, including those limited to riders under 18.

    Incidentally, did Europe ever develop a horse archery tradition? Its odd to think that I can’t actually think of one offhand.

    • Replies: @CanSpeccy
  99. @res

    Motivated reasoning is a powerful force.

    • Agree: res
  100. Okechukwu says:

    Certainly intelligence is complex but it can be broken down. If you isolate something like executive function or working memory, its entirely possible to breed for it(and has been done before, thus the German Shepherd). On a more invasive level, mice have been cognitively altered through both genomic addition as well as through neural cell transplantation(and guess what, adding human astrocytes into the “complex” system of the mice didn’t cause chaos, it just made them smarter).

    Jesus, you’re obtuse. Nature isn’t a lab, is it? Random human sexual couplings are what proliferate genetic material from generation to generation. The science lab is inconsequential to that process.

    Heck, you can get cognitive differences simply by injecting neurotransmitter chemicals into people

    You can do alot of things in the lab. Some may work on humans, others will not. But you will note that genes are transmitted via sexual intercourse and the production of offspring. As of this moment, no one is injecting anything into anyone. We’re a long way from that. My wife’s lab has to take security precautions against animal rights activists breaking in, freeing the animals and trashing the place. The place is literally like a hardened military facility. Now imagine the outcry that would ensue if scientists even begin discussing experimentation on humans.

    There’s no evidence that population groups(or individuals) produce the same precursor hormones, etc.

    There’s no evidence that they don’t. And even if they don’t produce the exact same precursor hormones, it’s likely that they produce an alternative that performs the same function. In much the same way, East Asians and Europeans have light skin, but they get their via different sets of genes.

    • Replies: @Daniel Chieh
  101. @Okechukwu

    There’s no evidence that they don’t. And even if they don’t produce the exact same precursor hormones, it’s likely that they produce an alternative that performs the same function.

    Oh really. There’s an example of two population groups that have significantly different hormones which affect neurotransmitter chemicals: men and women.

    As of this moment, no one is injecting anything into anyone. We’re a long way from that.

    You mean that we don’t have chemicals that alter one’s cognitive profile or we don’t use it?

    Fermented beverages existed in early Egyptian civilization, and there is evidence of an early alcoholic drink in China around 7000 B.C. In India, an alcoholic beverage called sura, distilled from rice, was in use between 3000 and 2000 B.C

    CanSpeccy may be able to you provide you with more details and personal experiences, I’m sure. Incidentally, and completely apropos of nothing, the liver is similar in that even though it is “complex” it can even have basically nonfunctional zombie cells sucking up oxygen, yet the rest of the liver mostly continues to function. Its called cirrhosis.

    As I like to say, thank you for your contribution to Unz humor.

    • Replies: @Okechukwu
  102. Okechukwu says:
    @res

    So you chose “no true variation.” Predictability is good (I suppose). Your moving the goalposts all over the place is rather funny. My sense from other discussions is that you are smarter than that. Do you really not see how ridiculous (and non-responsive to my points) your “arguments” are?

    Blame your strawmanning, don’t blame me. Go back to my original post that you responded to. I never said that all human complex organs are exactly the same in phenotype or morphology. I said that on a group-level basis, they are the same in performance. Whether you’re in the Arctic or the Sahara, you need a liver that works.

    Human genetic variation excludes complex organs. And the brain is the most complex of them all. I know it kills you to hear this but most human genetic differences are expressed as superficial variation.

  103. Okechukwu says:
    @Daniel Chieh

    Oh really. There’s an example of two population groups that have significantly different hormones which affect neurotransmitter chemicals: men and women.

    You’ve just made my point. To wit, there’s no evidence that men are more intelligent than women or vice versa.

    You mean that we don’t have chemicals that alter one’s cognitive profile or we don’t use it?

    Dude, do you even understand how this stuff works? You’re free to volunteer if they ever get to clinical trials. Assuming you’re still alive since you sound like a grumpy old man. You can even volunteer now. Maybe Canspeccy can enlighten you on some unregulated “research” in some garage labs somewhere. Maybe China is doing research using their prisoners as guinea pigs. You can go to the motherland and volunteer yourself. Me, I’ll pass.

    Fermented beverages existed in early Egyptian civilization, and there is evidence of an early alcoholic drink in China around 7000 B.C. In India, an alcoholic beverage called sura, distilled from rice, was in use between 3000 and 2000 B.C.

    The effects of alcohol are temporary, genius.

  104. @Okechukwu

    Clearly, I understand how “this stuff” works far better than you do, which is also why I can dismiss you as a waste of time, though embarrassing you from time to time is pretty funny.

    And sadly, perhaps, an excellent example of difference in “intelligence.” Oh, and by the way, I’m actually rather an IQ skeptic when it comes to intelligence(which I think its an emergent function of a variety of smaller, more controllable features such as working memory, etc.), but its not like you can tell the difference.

    • Replies: @Okechukwu
  105. CanSpeccy says: • Website
    @Daniel Chieh

    did Europe ever develop a horse archery tradition?

    Not in England, for sure. There the bowmen were just plebs who turned out at the weekend to practice:

    1363 marked the first of a series of ordinances and parliamentary statutes meant to compel Englishmen to spend their Sundays and holidays “not in pointless amusements such as football, bowls, tennis and dice, but in shooting at the butts*.” It was a departure from the general view that peasants should spend their time at home, at work or at Church. Authorities worried that games encouraged gambling, or might get out of hand and cause trouble. But now they made an important exception, and villages erected butts,* usually near the local parish Church (the Church was the center of most social activity back then). Weekly competitions became a happily anticipated event.

    *Butts: in archery, a butt was a shooting field, with mounds of earth used for the targets, where English bowmen practiced shooting the French in the butt as they fled the field.

  106. @Okechukwu

    By the way, I didn’t say “intelligence.” I mentioned “cognitive profile” which can include personality. The idea that vastly different hormones(or that hormone generation isn’t partly genetically determined) and neurotransmitters cannot effect measurable reactions in personality is so hilarious that it barely needs acknowledgment. Its really funnier than you can imagine, its akin to saying that you can’t get reactions by through deep brain stimulation of the striatum, and therefore Dr. Delgrado and Dr. Heath never existed or ran experiments.

    You might as well go with the mind is independent of the brain at that point, and that alcohol is a magical conduit to the spirit world. Indeed, the entire world of psychoactives are clearly functional only through occult means. Does lead strike at the chi gates of the body to the mind? The brain chakra!

    Ah. Glorious. Yes, thank you very much for the humor, indeed.

    Its good to remember that this might be a lot of people believe.

    • Replies: @Okechukwu
  107. Okechukwu says:
    @Daniel Chieh

    Clearly, I understand how “this stuff” works far better than you do, which is also why I can dismiss you as a waste of time, though embarrassing you from time to time is pretty funny.

    No you don’t if you think we can just line up to receive super brain enhancing injections. Ever heard of the FDA and their counterparts around the world? We are decades away from clinical trials on humans and maybe hundreds of years away. Even a brand new injection for a sore elbow would take maybe 20 years to receive approve for clinical trials.

    And sadly, perhaps, an excellent example of difference in “intelligence.”

    Oh, I remember a previous encounter with you where you bragged about your alleged, albeit undemonstrated intelligence. Why you think you’re so smart escapes me. Suffice it to say, people who are really smart don’t go around trying to convince the world of it.

    • Replies: @Daniel Chieh
  108. @Okechukwu

    You misunderstand me greatly, sir.

    I have no great mind: I have neither the keen mind of Paracelsus, the wit of Wilde, nor even the patient epismology of Mendel. My knowledge of Greek is poor and of Latin is absent, and so I cannot even properly call myself schooled.

    Nay, indeed, I could hardly be called canny or intelligent at all, save in comparison to you. A rude campfire is but little light, but it does seem surpassing bright measured against a candle wanting a wick.

  109. Okechukwu says:
    @Daniel Chieh

    By the way, I didn’t say “intelligence.” I mentioned “cognitive profile” which can include personality. The idea that vastly different hormones(or that hormone generation isn’t partly genetically determined) and neurotransmitters cannot effect measurable reactions in personality is so hilarious that it barely needs acknowledgment. Its really funnier than you can imagine, its akin to saying that you can’t get reactions by through deep brain stimulation of the striatum, and therefore Dr. Delgrado and Dr. Heath never existed or ran experiments.

    Maybe you should make up your mind what you’re trying to say. You go from suggesting permanent cognitive enhancements through some as yet undetermined and unverified exotic treatments to talking about the sort of hormonal and psychotic changes that drugs have been able to induce for thousands of years. Some people are born with psychiatric illnesses like schizophrenia and are prescribed antipsychotic medications to treat them. The point is, hormonal changes, fluctuations and imbalances don’t require an injection to the brain to activate or to treat. My wife has an episode every month.

    You might as well go with the mind is independent of the brain at that point, and that alcohol is a magical conduit to the spirit world. Indeed, the entire world of psychoactives are clearly functional only through occult means. Does lead strike at the chi gates of the body to the mind? The brain chakra!

    Haha. In my high school and early college days I experimented with practically every drug there was. I went on trips I thought I’d never come back from. My consciousness was definitely altered in those moments, sometimes severely so. But the effect is short lived. That’s why drug addicts need to constantly replenish the narcotics in their system in order to keep the buzz going.

  110. Curle says:
    @RaceRealist88

    “Intelligence is important for survival.”

    At some level. Hunter-gatherer level suffices as long as you don’t have smarter resource competitors.

    • Replies: @Okechukwu
  111. Okechukwu says:
    @Curle

    At some level. Hunter-gatherer level suffices as long as you don’t have smarter resource competitors.

    You might want to rephrase that to say as long as you don’t have better armed and malevolent resource competitors. Because in the hunter-gatherer environment, they are the intelligent ones. They are the ones with high IQ’s.

  112. szopen says:
    @RaceRealist88

    So you cannot answer my question and by proxy whatever else you said to me is not relevant. It’ll be relevant once you answer my questions.

    Hey, but you also have no theory of intelligence, yet you posed a hypothesis that intelligence “whatever it is” will have low variance because … Hence, I think that stating that when I say >>intelligence “whatever it is” will have different adaptability in different environment<< it is irrelevant because I have no theory of intelligence – does not sound as sound answer.

    Frankly, I had not expected that rhetorical tricks from you.

    In short:

    You : I don't know what intelligence is, but it will have low variance because X
    Me: Intelligence will not have low variance because Y
    You: DO you know what intelligence is?
    Me: No.
    You: Then shut up.

    • Replies: @RaceRealist88
  113. mikemikev says:
    @James Thompson

    I hope Piffer applies this model to samples of other races. The results would provide some useful evidence. Assuming a discrimination model it should predict higher IQs than actual in low IQ races, and vice versa.

  114. @szopen

    I presented a logical argument.

    (1) Traits important for survival are not normally distributed.
    (2) Few biological traits are normally distributed.
    (3) Natural selection produces phenotypes with values that would have been previously above average.
    (4) ‘Intelligence’ (whatever it is) is important for survival.
    (5) Ergo, intelligence would have a low variation with no normal distribution.

    I don’t need to define it for the argument since it follows from (1) that whatever ‘intelligence’ is, if it’s important for survival, it has a low genetic variation (with low heritability).

    • Replies: @szopen
    , @szopen
  115. szopen says:
    @RaceRealist88

    I will ignore for a moment argument about normal distribution, just concentrate on variation.

    But the same applies for me. I do not need the definition or theory of intelligence to present a counterargument.

    (1) Some traits have different values and costs depending on the environment (e.g. white fur in the north vs different color in the south)
    (2) If there is mobility within a species between different environments, it will increase a variation unless there is a barrier preventing mobility
    (3) In human societies, different societal niches/occupations seem to demand different things from people, including intelligence (whatever it is) .

    Hence (1)+(2) + (3) -> in addition to pressure to decrease variation, there is also counterpressure

    I do not need to define intelligence, because whatever it is, it cannot have the same value and cost in every single environment (geographical/social) and yet we have enough social (and geographical) mobility to apply (2).

    • Replies: @RaceRealist88
  116. @szopen

    Since your invoking ‘intelligence’ for occupation then you have to define it. Is it ‘intelligence’ as in ‘IQ’?

    Prove that ‘intelligence’ wouldn’t have the same value in all niches (evolutionary environments preferred since I’m discussing evolution).

    Also see here for arguments against education (so-called IQ proxy) and success in life. Weird…

    http://sci-hub.tw/10.15252/embr.201744140

    • Replies: @szopen
    , @boggled123
  117. szopen says:
    @RaceRealist88

    What follows now is not an argument. On the contrary, it’s a plea for explanation.

    Just treat me like an ignorant idiot, who nevertheless would love to know more.

    I must say that I started to think about variation: what it actually means “low” variance (in real world, for traits with possibly continuous value)? I am more and more dumbfounded. Say we have some trait, which we code as variable A with only three values: 1, 2, 3. Almost all instances have value 2, so the variable has very low variance. But then, suddenly someone makes a breaktrough which allows us to decode the very same trait, but with much finer precision. Suddenly, we can code the variable as having thousands of possible values – and suddenly a normal distribution might appear. Hence, it would seem that “low” or “high” variance is actually a function of measurement, and is a result of our decision how to group the values, how precise the measurement is, what units to take etc. In comparing two populations using the same measurement system, comparing variance has sense; but if we just have one population, nothing to compare to, how to say it has “low” or “high” variance?!?

    Where I made an error in reasoning? How to make sense of this?

    • Replies: @res
  118. szopen says:
    @RaceRealist88

    evolutionary environments preferred since I’m discussing evolution

    Evolution never stops and selection can act very quickly, hence all environments are evolutionary environments.

    Prove that ‘intelligence’ wouldn’t have the same value in all niches

    Because pretty much most if not all traits I can think of do not have the same value (that is, after taking into balance the costs and the gains). Why intelligence would be different?

    • Replies: @Daniel Chieh
  119. @szopen

    I mean, the paper basically answers much of it already.

    The finding of neurogenesis gene-set enrichment for intelligence is persuasive, because neurogenesis has been linked to cognitive processes—particularly pattern separation and cognitive flexibility—in rodent models. New neurons are continually made in humans in the subgranular zone of the hippocampus and in the striatum; in rodent studies, experimentally reducing analogous neurogenesis results in a poorer ability to discriminate between highly similar patterns, whereas increasing the number of new neurons produced results in an increased ability to successfully discriminate between highly similar stimuli.

    A simple English translation of this is that there’s a genes allele that codes for better neurogenesis or growth of neurons, which translates into roughly “better learning/discrimination between patterns.” Now being able to memorize 4 words of Polish, for example, after studying for a day instead of 3, for example, is pretty nice, I think its safe to argue that it is not so highly selected that it will immediately dominate the entire genepool unless there was a bottleneck for some reason that killed everyone who couldn’t learn Polish quickly enough.

    Its the same reason why red kangaroos have so many adaptations to the environment and evolve so quickly, when droughts kill up to 80% of them, but gray kangaroos live in milder areas and thus even if one of them evolved an allele for water preservation, its not quite as useful so you won’t see it overtake the population like it does with reds.

    And as far as niches go, executive function such as the ability to focus can be very useful in a peaceful environment, and much less useful when meditating upon the ineffable qualities of a stamen and its poetic possibilities are disturbed rudely by a lion’s jaw making contact with your cranium. Being distractable is a feature, not a bug, of human consciousness for much of our existence.

    If I seem to make light of the conversation, its because it feels like some of the commentators didn’t read the paper.

  120. res says:
    @szopen

    Say we have some trait, which we code as variable A with only three values: 1, 2, 3. Almost all instances have value 2, so the variable has very low variance. But then, suddenly someone makes a breaktrough which allows us to decode the very same trait, but with much finer precision. Suddenly, we can code the variable as having thousands of possible values – and suddenly a normal distribution might appear. Hence, it would seem that “low” or “high” variance is actually a function of measurement, and is a result of our decision how to group the values, how precise the measurement is, what units to take etc. In comparing two populations using the same measurement system, comparing variance has sense; but if we just have one population, nothing to compare to, how to say it has “low” or “high” variance?!?

    Some comments.

    First, with the measurement accuracy aspect. I think as long as you had even a few 1s and 3s you would see similar “variance” (in the statistical sense) as long as you used the same units (this is a good candidate for a simulation, let me know if you think this would be worth me trying in R). You would see more “variation” (in the intuitive, “this is not always the same”, sense) though. I think this observation is very relevant for intelligence where IQ is a much finer grained measurement than most people’s intuition (e.g. I tend to think in terms of SDs). Height is an interesting comparison because people are not shy about discussing their numerical height and it is more easily observable.

    Second, I think “low” or “high” variance has both an absolute and relative meaning. The relative meaning applies between populations as you observed. This is similar to sex ability tilts we talked about before which are only meaningful relative to a reference population. In a related topic, a good scale invariant measure of average differences between populations in a trait is Cohen’s d: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Effect_size#Cohen’s_d
    which compares the difference in means to the standard deviation. We talked about this a good bit during l’affaire Damore.

    The absolute meaning can be defined in terms of variation relative to the mean. This is a useful enough concept that it has a name in statistics: Coefficient of Variation (CV): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coefficient_of_variation
    This only works properly for a ratio scale (key point: “A ratio scale possesses a meaningful (unique and non-arbitrary) zero value. “): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Level_of_measurement#Ratio_scale
    See temperature example at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coefficient_of_variation#Examples_of_misuse

    So looking at height, for American men we have an average of about 178cm with an SD of about 8 cm: https://danielmiessler.com/blog/standard-deviations-explained/
    Giving a CV of 8/178 = 0.045
    I think that gives some support for the idea that evolution leads to “small” variation in at least some important traits. But practically speaking, the difference in height both within and between populations are enough for enormous differences in suitability for a given task. I think this makes it hard to characterize the variation as “small” in an informal sense.

    If anyone wants detailed height means and SDs for European countries by birth year see https://econ-papers.upf.edu/papers/1002.pdf

    Looking at intelligence in a similar fashion, the Rasch score is an appropriate ratio scale measure. This comment last year by EH gives a lucid and concise explanation (I had trouble finding simple means and SDs for Rasch scores, better references appreciated): https://www.unz.com/jthompson/the-woodley-effect/#comment-1767420
    He (?) gives an adult Rasch CSS mean around 510 with an SD of 8.5
    This gives a CV of 8.5/510 = 0.017 which is a bit more than a third of the height CV. So by this measure the variation of intelligence within humans is even smaller than that of height (though I think my comment above about “suitability for task” applies even more for intelligence).

    EH also gave a good way of thinking about the variation in intelligence:

    So the percentage variation in human intelligence is low (~10% difference within the middle 99.9% of the adult population), but expressed as age differences, +2 s.d. people are smarter at age 9 than the average adult, while -2 s.d. adults are only as smart as the average 6 year old.

    What does everyone think of using the coefficient of variation for ratio scale measures of traits as a way of quantifying trait variation? How about as a way to indirectly measure evolutionary pressure on a trait?

    Searching for “ratio scale” or “Rasch” on Dr. Thompson’s blog is worthwhile if you are interested in more about those.

    • Replies: @szopen
    , @utu
  121. szopen says:
    @res

    Thanks a lot for an answer!

    However:

    as long as you used the same units

    But that’s the part of my concern. For example, we are much better at differentiating shades of some colors than the others. Say we have objects of different colors and we want to see the variance. Most of them is just green, so it seem there is not much variance in there. However, this is onlybecause we use units based on human perception (e.g. “two shades are different if they can be differentiated by a human eye”). If we would use some other measure (wavelength) suddenly it would appear that actually there is a lot of variance). It’s really would be hard to say one measurement here is objectively better, and another one is not.

    • Replies: @res
  122. utu says:
    @res

    Interesting. Yet I think it is even more interesting. Variance and mean are parameters of already defined variable. Intelligence (IQ) as a numerical variable is constructed. And this construct is somewhat arbitrary. The values of IQ are meaningful only in terms of their statistical distribution. For example there is not much meaning of ∆IQ. That John’s IQ is 10 points higher than Alice’s IQ has no meaning in itself unless we know what John’s IQ is. The same ∆IQ=10 means something else when it is around IQ=100 and something else when it is around IQ=140. This is not a linear scale like a temperature that measures a manifestation of energy where ∆T=10K is the same amount of energy whether measured around 100K or 300K. The meaning of IQ is in its statistical distribution. The only information conveyed by IQ is how many SD’s somebody is away from mean and whether it is to the left of right side of the mean. So, is then the sale X in terms X*SD absolute. No, because X has absolute meaning only when we know the pdf of distribution. For different pdf shapes the same X has different meanings.

    IQ distribution turns out to be closely approximated with a Gaussian pdf. Is it a happenstance or was it by design? Can we deform it from Gaussian? Absolutely. It is very easy. Introduce nonlinearity to the scale like multiply all IQ>140 by 1.01.

    So what does it tell us? That pdf shape is not that essential and it can be manipulated with scale transformation. So what is essential? That the IQ scale measures the degree of rarity of intelligence. This rarity can be measured with different scales producing different pdf distributions but still only rarity matters.

    So how one can construct the scale? Let suppose we have questions or tasks Qk, for k=1,2,… and we measure the difficulty of each question with probability Pk of it being answered correctly within a population. For example question Qx is answered by Px=2.5% of population and question Qy is answered by Py=50% of population. So if Px<Py then Qx is more difficult than Qy. The relation "is more difficult than" can be turned into numerical relation. How can we do it? The obvious way is to assign numerical weights Wk, k=1,2… to questions Qk and calculate the final Intelligence Test Score as ITS=W1+W2,… The ITS variable will have its distribution and its pdf.

    The question is how to define weights Wk? There is only one constraint: the ITS scale must be congruent with probabilities Pk. A person who answered the Qx question with Px=2.5% probability must get the ITS that places her in 2.5% fraction of the ITS distribution. This is the meaning of congruency, i.e., preservation of relation.

    How much room we have in selecting weights Wk? We can create different scales leading to different pdfs that all of them guarantee the congruency between the ITS scale and probabilities Pk.

    • Replies: @res
  123. res says:
    @szopen

    Agreed. It is even more interesting when the units have a nonlinear relationship (which I believe is true for human color differentiation ability vs. wavelength). I think the determinant of “a lot of variance” differs vastly depending on the purpose at hand. Compare laser quality control vs. graphic design vs. casual conversation about colors.

    As an aside, color perception is a very interesting concept. It involves much more than just wavelength. The first few chapters of https://www.amazon.com/Management-Fraser-Published-Peachpit-Paperback/dp/B00HQ10NYO do an excellent job of tying together the things which underlie human color perception in a sophisticated but technically undemanding fashion (e.g. no equations).

    For a sample of the complexity, look up metamerism: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Metamerism_(color)

    P.S. The final answer to https://biology.stackexchange.com/questions/53313/what-is-the-smallest-difference-in-light-wavelength-that-the-human-eye-can-detec is an insightful take on my speculation above about color differentiation vs. wavelength.

  124. Pericles says:
    @RaceRealist88

    Selection pressures vary with time and place however. For instance, we seem to currently be in a regime of declining IQ (no, not being sarcastic).

  125. res says:
    @utu

    I think it is fair to say the Rasch score is an attempt to address the issues you raise.

    How successful it is at that is an interesting question. I would be interesting in hearing Dr. Thompson or EH’s take on that. Is there any definitive reference for Rasch scores that includes things like the information EH gave in his comment? How close to Gaussian are Rasch score distributions?

    IQ distribution turns out to be closely approximated with a Gaussian pdf. Is it a happenstance or was it by design? Can we deform it from Gaussian? Absolutely. It is very easy. Introduce nonlinearity to the scale like multiply all IQ>140 by 1.01.

    I think it is accurate to say the extent to which ratio IQs are Gaussian is happenstance while deviation IQs are Gaussian by design.

    • Replies: @James Thompson
    , @utu
  126. Pericles says:
    @Anonymous

    Recall that Dijkstra didn’t like goto because it permitted unstructured control flow, but accepted conditionals, loops, etc. It seems evident that Nature on many levels, including genetics, prefers what works right now rather than simplicity, structure, or elegance.

  127. Pericles says:
    @Frederick V. Reed

    There are nearly a billion Whites too, if you count the entire world. For example, the EU has a population of more than 400 million, not all black. Furthermore, there is Russia, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, even South Africa, and so on.

    Then there also are about four or five billion belonging to the ‘other’ category. Clearly the reproductive spoils of modernity have not gone to its originators.

  128. Pericles says:
    @Okechukwu

    You need to troll at a more sophisticated, more intelligent level.

    • Troll: Okechukwu
    • Replies: @Pericles
  129. @songbird

    Vaguely related: as much as I love fMRI, it can have some issues as of late of false positives, as noted by this pretty funny “study.”

    http://prefrontal.org/files/posters/Bennett-Salmon-2009.pdf

    Subject. One mature Atlantic Salmon (Salmo salar) participated in the fMRI study. The salmon was approximately 18 inches long, weighed 3.8 lbs, and was not alive at the time of scanning.

    Task. The task administered to the salmon involved completing an open-ended mentalizing task. The salmon was shown a series of photographs depicting human individuals in social situations with a specified emotional valence. The salmon was asked to determine what emotion the individual in the photo must have been experiencing.

    And behold, they got positive results:

    Several active voxels were discovered in a cluster located within the salmon’s brain cavity (Figure 1, see above). The size of this cluster was 81 mm3 with a cluster-level significance of p = 0.001. Due to the coarse resolution of the echo-planar image acquisition and the relatively small size of the salmon
    brain further discrimination between brain regions could not be completed. Out of a search volume of 8064 voxels a total of 16 voxels were significant.

    This, in my opinion, is truly a masterpiece of trolling.

  130. CanSpeccy says: • Website

    IQ test are supposed to measure some kind of disembodied intellectual potential unrelated to actual achievement.

    There may be some value in measuring it, but what IQ tests measure is not what most people mean by intelligence.

    In plain language, intelligence is the manifestation of skill in any field. A soccer player who positions himself well, develops an effective movement, etc. is a clever or intelligent player. Likewise, someone who can play a sonata after hearing it once is clever, even if he’s a gamma minus moron, like Derek Paravicini, whose IQ is so low it’s probably unmeasurable.

    So what matters in most people’s assessment of intelligence, is not IQ but genius, which bears little relation to IQ.

    Of course to be a mathematical genius or a physics genius or any other kind of genius you may need some basic aptitude measurable as IQ. But beyond a basic requirement for IQ, rarely more than 120 or so, genius, or intelligence as that term is understood by the vast majority of users of the English language, is a matter not of IQ, but of temperament, education, environment, and the mere chance of being born in the culture, in the age, and in the social class in which a particular form of genius can emerge.

    Of course we’re not all geniuses, yet all have talents in varying degrees on which the psychometricians have virtually no handle, but in accordance with which others judge us intelligent or not.

  131. @res

    Interesting. I am trying to work up a series of explanations on Rasch scoring, but haven’t got a satisfactory one yet. It has been a concept lurking at the back of psychometrics for a very long while, but has never really caught on. However, I think it might be a great help in discussions about the reality or otherwise of mental tests.

    • Replies: @res
  132. Svigor says:

    Rushton was the quintessential racist pseudo-”scientist.” A 5 year old could pick his theories apart.

    Does this sound more convincing when it hits black ears?

    I challenge you to prove your allegation of a consensus that innate human intellectual capacity varies between human groupings. No white supremacist pseudoscientists please.

    Anyone who “proves” it is ipso facto a “white supremacist pseudoscientist.” Because, you know, chinks have mean IQ 5 points higher, and stuff.

    Negro logic.

    • Replies: @Okechukwu
    , @RaceRealist88
  133. utu says:
    @res

    Thanks. I looked up Rasch Model at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rasch_model and clearly he can do what I was trying to grope in my #123 comment. I think his approach is honest to god. 5 stars from utu.

    I am not sure where he gets his equation for Pr{Xni=1} from but from it having multiple questions test {Xni} allows to calculate individual ability Beta(n) and estimate difficulty of each question Detla(i) for large sample of tested individuals using, say rms fit.

    I like his approach because it is less arbitrary than calculating total score as a sum of answers to all data but it probably will be equivalent to some weighted sum. So the question would be what are the values of weights Wi that Beta(n)=Weight1*Xn1+…+Weighti*Xni+… This is another issue.

    What is great about his approach is that you can obtain the same scales, I think , from two different tests. If you have two sets of tests {Xni} and {Yni} that are applied on the same sample of subjects the difficulty of each question from two tests will be on the same scale as well as person ability form each set.

    I presume that under different assumptions about probability a different equation for Pr{Xni=1} will be obtained.

    The question is what predetermines the distribution of Beta? And for different equation for Pr(Xni=1) the distribution will be different.

    A Summary of Rasch Method

    The general problem is as follows: you have a sample of subjects n=1,2… and each subject has ability Beta(n) and you have a set of questions i=1,2… and each question has difficulty Delta(i) and you add some mathematical/statistical theory to express the probability that n-th person answers i-th question in terms of Beta’s and Delta’s. Once you have answers for all questions from all subjects you can calculate Beta’s and Delta’s.

    On the first glance it seems that the ability Beta is independent of statistical distribution of this ability in population however because it is dependent on questions difficulties Delta(i) and Delta(i) is clearly related to frequency with which question is answered, I think, the ability scale Beta is still population dependent.

  134. res says:
    @James Thompson

    It would be great to see that series. I dug into Rasch scoring a bit one of the other times it came up on your blog (I think the thread with the EH comment I linked) but found it hard to find concrete numbers and analysis relating to intelligence (though I did see a great deal of discussion about item response theory and such).

    I don’t know how much you have engaged with the Rasch material, but this paper looked interesting https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5132390/
    and referenced this textbook: https://www.amazon.com/Applying-Rasch-Model-Fundamental-Measurement/dp/0805854622
    Any thoughts?

    I ran with the coefficient of variation idea from comment 121 and tried computing the CV of a variety of physiological measures (about a hundred, mostly lab tests). Comparing to the CVs I computed above (male height = 0.045 and Rasch score = 0.017 ) some examples were:

    The smallest CV was blood Sodium at 0.018. Almost identical to Rasch score. Blood Sodium is known to be a tightly physiologically regulated quantity so I think that makes a good comparison to human intelligence. Note that I am giving CVs as decimals. They are often multiplied by 100 to turn into a percentile.

    One of the largest CVs was insulin at 2.4.

    Height had a CV of 0.060 in my dataset. Not sure if the one third larger number is because I combined men and women or something else.

    Weight CV was 0.24. Total cholesterol CV was 0.22.

    DBP (diastolic BP) was 0.14 and SBP was 0.16.

    • Replies: @res
  135. @RaceRealist88

    The mind boggled. Who is the author of the paper cited? What institution is he affiliated with? Trying to argue against quantitative methods with just hand waving and no numbers to proved them? Is that your standard? Sad.

    • Replies: @RaceRealist88
  136. szopen says:
    @CanSpeccy

    A soccer player who positions himself well, develops an effective movement, etc. is a clever or intelligent player. Likewise, someone who can play a sonata after hearing it once is clever

    Maybe in your country. In Polish there is a difference between “clever” and “intelligent” (so you can say someone is “intelligent but not clever”) and being able to play a sonata would be described as neither clever nor intelligent.

    • Replies: @CanSpeccy
  137. Pericles says:
    @Pericles

    Troll: Okechukwu

    Succinct.

  138. @CanSpeccy

    I had hoped that this blog was of interest to you, and that my attempts to explain intelligence and intelligence research had been successful, but it seems not.

    • Replies: @CanSpeccy
  139. CanSpeccy says: • Website
    @szopen

    In Polish there is a difference between “clever” and “intelligent” (so you can say someone is “intelligent but not clever”) and being able to play a sonata would be described as neither clever nor intelligent.

    Yeah, and they say that in Poland a firing squad stands in a circle.

    • Replies: @Realist
  140. CanSpeccy says: • Website
    @James Thompson

    I had hoped that this blog was of interest to you, and that my attempts to explain intelligence and intelligence research had been successful, but it seems not.

    I had hoped that my comment on your post was of interest to you, and that my attempts to explain intelligence, as that term is understood by most users of the English language, had been successful, but it seems not.

    But whatever you have to say about IQ, that is a different matter. Or so it seems to me.

    • Replies: @anonymous
    , @James Thompson
  141. CanSpeccy says: • Website
    @RaceRealist88

    The last paper that Rushton published before he died in October of 2012 was an article with Donald Templer—another psychologist—titled Do pigmentation and the melanocortin system modulate aggression and sexuality in humans as they do in other animals? (Rushton and Templer, 2012) and they make a surfeit of bold claims that do not follow. They review animal studies on skin and fur pigmentation and show that the darker an animal’s skin or fur, the more likely they are to be aggressive and violent.

    LOL. Take a look at this vid of a polar bear killing a seal.

    Phillipe Rushton once appeared in a (Toronto) Globe and Mail editorial page cartoon (which I am unable to locate on the Web) — with a very small head.

    • Replies: @res
  142. Okechukwu says:
    @Svigor

    Does this sound more convincing when it hits black ears?

    Try white ears, as whites comprise 99.9% of Rushton’s critics. That Rushton was a racist pseudo-”scientific” charlatan is objectively true. But people of your ideological persuasion have no interest in objectivity or truth or even reality.

    Anyone who “proves” it is ipso facto a “white supremacist pseudoscientist.” Because, you know, chinks have mean IQ 5 points higher, and stuff.

    The “chink” IQ claims likely are as fraudulent as the African ones. It’s obvious that Race/IQ propagandists use it to try to shield themselves against charges of racism. It only works on the very dumb though.

  143. @CanSpeccy

    ‘IQ test are supposed to measure some kind of disembodied intellectual potential’

    They measure learned skills, knowledge, motivation, etc. Genes don’t cause behavior.

    • Replies: @utu
    , @CanSpeccy
  144. anonymous • Disclaimer says:
    @CanSpeccy

    You’ve just experienced a “Cambridge put-down.”

    • Replies: @CanSpeccy
  145. @boggled123

    Author is Ken Richardson. Independent researcher. Retired senior lecturer on human development at Open University. Phd in psychology.

    “Trying to argue against quantitative methods with just hand waving and no numbers to proved them? Is that your standard? Sad.”

    Appeal to authority.

    • Replies: @res
  146. res says:
    @res

    Height had a CV of 0.060 in my dataset. Not sure if the one third larger number is because I combined men and women or something else.

    I revisited this to calculate CVs by sex (and the M/F ratio) and also calculate Cohen’s d for the sex difference in means.

    The height discrepancy was because I pooled men and women–as I thought. Separating them gave a height CV = 0.044 for men and 0.045 for women compared to the 0.045 I estimated for men earlier (vs. 0.060 combined). Height is also interesting because it (unsurprisingly) has the largest Cohen’s d in my dataset at 1.78 (using the pooled SD, with full group SD it was 1.33 which makes a good case for using the more complicated pooled SD).

    There were some other interesting results from all of that, but the one that really caught my eye was insulin which had almost identical means for men and women (Cohen’s d = 0.006) but the CV and SD were 2.8x larger for men. Not sure what is going on there! I need to look into that some more…

  147. res says:
    @RaceRealist88

    Appeal to authority.

    Projection. Your reference to Ken Richardson’s hand waving (especially when you throw in his credentials in your followup!) is more an appeal to authority then boggled123′s response.

    • Replies: @RaceRealist88
  148. CanSpeccy says: • Website
    @anonymous

    You’ve just experienced a “Cambridge put-down.”

    James Thompson’s not Cambridge. He’s from UCL, the place that fires Nobel prize winners for making mild non-PC, self-deprecatory jokes.

  149. res says:
    @CanSpeccy

    Phillipe Rushton once appeared in a (Toronto) Globe and Mail editorial page cartoon (which I am unable to locate on the Web) — with a very small head.

    LOL! Now there is a way to judge credibility.

  150. utu says:
    @RaceRealist88

    Genes don’t cause behavior.

    It is really hard to explain away correlation differences between pairs of MZ and DZ twins.

    • Replies: @RaceRealist88
  151. utu says:
    @RaceRealist88

    I looked at the paper you linked:

    Ken Richardson: GWAS and cognitive abilities: Why correlations are inevitable and meaningless

    His argument is that inevitability of GWAS correlation is due to stratification and thus it is not causative. Stratification can do it and one will find a non causative correlation. Richardson can argue this because correlation found so far are very low like in this paper (7% explained variance). Once or if the correlations will be found closer to twin studies results (50% explain variance) then stratification no longer can be used because simply societies are not that strongly stratified. Furthermore stratification does not explain large difference between pairs of MZ and DZ twins.

    • Replies: @RaceRealist88
    , @res
  152. @utu

    “It is really hard to explain away correlation differences between pairs of MZ and DZ twins.”

    The EEA is false.

    • Replies: @utu
  153. @res

    I answered his questions, which were:

    Who is the author of the paper cited? What institution is he affiliated with?

    No appeal to authority was made. Stating credentials (which goes with ‘What institution is he affiliated with?’) is not an appeal to authority.

  154. Realist says:
    @CanSpeccy

    Cheap ,Polish joke, shot

    • Replies: @CanSpeccy
  155. CanSpeccy says: • Website
    @RaceRealist88

    They [IQ test] measure learned skills, knowledge, motivation, etc. Genes don’t cause behavior.

    All phenotypic traits, including behavioral traits, are determined by an E by G interaction, so genes undoubtedly do influence IQ test results. Moreover, it is valid to investigate genetic effects on intellectual performance, however dependent that performance may be on learning, motivation, etc.

    What’s important is to distinguish between the genetic and the environmental effects, which IQists often seem reluctant to do. Hence the nonsensical comparison of the IQs of sub-Saharan Africans who have an average of three years of schooling with those of white people in the developed world who have about 20 years of schooling. Such comparisons cannot make any sense unless one deconstructs the data to take account of the many gross environmental and cultural differences between the populations.

    Another absurdity is the assumption that IQ is somehow a universal measure of functional intellectual capacity, whereas it is in fact a measure of what Western education has traditionally sought to inculcate; namely, the capacity for mathematical and verbal reasoning. To apply the same test to a pigmy in darkest Africa with his blow pipe and his poisoned arrow as if he were preparing to debate at the Oxford Union with some clown like Boris Johnson is ridiculous.

  156. @utu

    “Once or if the correlations will be found closer to twin studies results (50% explain variance) then stratification no longer can be used because simply societies are not that strongly stratified.”

    I agree but I very strongly doubt they’ll get anywhere near that high. Twin studies are very flawed. Heritability estimates are useless for humans. Twin studies—and behavior genetics as a whole—lie on a bed of false assumptions and fallacies.

    “Furthermore stratification does not explain large difference between pairs of MZ and DZ twins.”

    The EEA is false.

    • Replies: @Santoculto
  157. res says:
    @utu

    I want to see Ken Richardson take on the out of sample height prediction success in the compressed sensing work. It’s interesting how many people choose to espouse positions which are likely to be emphatically proven wrong in the near future.

  158. Equal environment assumption. The assumption that MZ and DZ twins experience roughly equal environments. But MZ twins experience much more similar environments than experienced by DZ twins, therefore the EEA is false, and heritability is shared environment. (Two conclusions: the EEA is true and differences are genetically caused or the EEA is false and diffences are environmentally caused.

    • Replies: @res
    , @szopen
    , @szopen
    , @utu
  159. res says:
    @RaceRealist88

    Nice false dichotomy.

    • Replies: @RaceRealist88
  160. szopen says:
    @utu

    Equal Environment Assumption, I suppose. That means that differences similarities between MZT in comparison to DZT might be due to differences in their environment, and what is ascribed to genes might be result of more similar environment. Of course, this was checked by at least was researcher, who tried to control for some similarities in environment he could thought of, and the results were not that different, but of course it’s hard to control for everything.

    This method of attack could be also attacked for other methods of calculating heritability. For example, there was one study where they actually calculated real genetic similarity between siblings and got confirmed heritabilities, but you can still say that more genetically siblings share also more equal environment.

    I would say this is sophistry, but I do not know much about anything, so it might be just me.

  161. szopen says:
    @RaceRealist88

    MZ twins experience much more similar environments than experienced by DZ twins

    Which parts of environment (Especially in twins reared apart)? It can’t be their looks, for example (this was already disproven).

    If you can point to a environment, you get testable hypothesis: get non-related, not-more-than-averagely-related people who share the parts of environment which contribute to higher similiarity between twins, and they should be more similar than random people. Or you can get MZ twins and DZ twins and control for taht part of environment.

    Otherwise, it’s just talking.

    • Replies: @RaceRealist88
  162. szopen says:
    @RaceRealist88

    The assumption that MZ and DZ twins experience roughly equal environments.

    To be more precise: the similarities in environment do not result in similarities in traits (at least, this is what I have read). That’s not the same.

    But MZ twins experience much more similar environments than experienced by DZ twins, therefore the EEA is false, and heritability is shared environment.

    No.

    EEA means: even if MZ twins have more similar environment than DZ twins, it does not influence heritability estimates. This assumption might be wrong or might be right – this is just assumption after all – but it is not disproven by the fact that MZ twins environments might be more similar than DZ twins.

    • Replies: @RaceRealist88
  163. CanSpeccy says: • Website
    @Realist

    Cheap ,Polish joke, shot

    Yes, did you like it? I have more.

    • Replies: @Realist
    , @Wizard of Oz
  164. @CanSpeccy

    You claim no extra benefits above IQ 120, but this has been shown not to be true by Benbow and Lub insky.

    • Replies: @CanSpeccy
  165. utu says:
    @RaceRealist88

    Equal environment assumption. The assumption that MZ and DZ twins experience roughly equal environments.

    When deriving the Falconer formula for heritability from correlations:

    H=2(r_mz – r_dz)

    indeed some assumptions are made about similarity of environments. The difference between r_mz and r_dz is very large: more than 0.25. It is hard to believe that this difference is a result of some overlooked dissimilarity for MZ and DZ environments. The only argument, in my opinion, that has some validity is that MZ twins evoke similar responses from the environment because they are more alike than DZ twins so they end up having more similar environments within a family. But if they search for different environments this is already nature not nurture part.

    Let’s forget MZ and DZ twins and Falconer’s formula. What about twins that were brought up apart. There are not that many cases but still some studies were made and r_mz for twins separated at birth is still very large (≈0.5). Correlation between randomly picked people born on the same date will probably be close to zero while r_mz≈0.5. How this can be explained in Richardson and your universe?

    Personally my sympathies are with Richardson who you parroting here because the IQists (here I could list many many objective and subjective reasons why I do not like them) irritate me but there are some limits to reality denial for me. While you on the other hand have already demonstrated your talents during the discussion on diet and nutrition. You and IQisst have similar doctrinaire mentality I do not like. That you and them are on the opposite sides of the barricade does not change my attitude. It is not only about who is right or wrong but about methodology where means justify ends.

    My position is that I am also skeptical of twin studies and suspect they overestimate heritability. For this reason I am looking forward to GWAS and Steve Hsu results because if Steve Hsu would demonstrate that he can explain 20%, 30%, 40%, or 50% of variance using just SNPs on huge sample and large validation sample I will have to throw a towel. But if GWAS and Hsu stagnate and get stuck around 7% level like this paper then the missing heritability gap will have to be explained by looking at other factors (like epigenetic or biome) to make sense of high correlation between twins. BTW, Steve Hsu is quiet recently.

    • Replies: @szopen
    , @RaceRealist88
  166. szopen says:
    @utu

    I am also skeptical of twin studies and suspect they overestimate heritability.

    There was this guy, with name starting with “F” (Falcon? Falson? Felcon? Can’t remember) who tried to find similar DZ and MZ twins (i.e. tried to control for environment) and overall, IIRC, he concluded that indeed heritability was slightly overestimated, but not much.

    OTOH, there are other studies (comparing the MZ twins with people who look exactly the same, but are unrelated; or comparing twins who mistakenly think they are MZ, but are actually DZ or v.v) which seem to confirm the high heritability estimates (the study for mistaken zygosity was for some psychic illness, can’t remember because I stopped reading after abstract and first few paragraphs of introduction).

    There was also study which compared siblings based on their genetic similarity (because siblings do not actually share exactly 1/2 of their genes), also confirming heritability (for height).

  167. CanSpeccy says: • Website
    @James Thompson

    You claim no extra benefits above IQ 120, but this has been shown not to be true by Benbow and Lub insky.

    James, I’m sure your verbal IQ is quite adequate to understand what I said, and it was not to claim “no extra benefits above IQ 120.”

    So let me reiterate:

    Of course to be a mathematical genius or a physics genius or any other kind of genius you may need some basic aptitude measurable as IQ. But beyond a basic requirement for IQ, rarely more than 120 or so, genius, or intelligence as that term is understood by the vast majority of users of the English language, is a matter not of IQ, but of temperament, education, environment, and the mere chance of being born in the culture, in the age, and in the social class in which a particular form of genius can emerge.

    The trouble with you, James, and all the other IQists, is that you presume to define the meaning of the term “intelligence,” as you think fit, whereas, since the days of Dr. Johnson’s dictionary, common usage has been accepted quite generally as the basis for the definition of the words of the English language.

    But you insist, contrary to common usage, that intelligence is what is measured with an IQ test, neither more nor less, with malign and, frankly, idiotic consequences such as the claim that sub-Saharan Africans are really thick because they have lower IQs than white people (though no lower than white people a century or so ago when they were about as poor and as poorly educated as today’s sub-Saharan Africans).

    I could go on and mention the two Nobel Prize winners who were excluded by virtue of an insufficiently high IQ from Terman’s long-term study of individuals selected in youth for high IQ (none of whom did anything much to distinguish themselves) — oops, I did mention them. I could mention Richard Feynman, who was reputed to be a mathematician of extraordinary ability, but with an IQ of only 120 or so (i.e., 125). And so on, but what’s the point. You and your fellow IQists have arrogated to yourselves the right to say what intelligence is, so we have to accept the fact that Richard Feynman, though perhaps the greatest American theoretical physicist of the Twentieth Century, was not very intelligent.

    If you were to confine yourselves to using the term intelligence as a synonym for IQ only for the purpose of technical discussion, that would be OK, I suppose. But to encourage the misunderstanding that IQ equals what most people consider to be intelligence is quite harmful. Moreover, by equating IQ with intelligence for scientific purposes, you are making what appears to be a misleading assumption as to the nature of intelligence. Yes, IQ correlates quite closely with mathematical and verbal reasoning, but genius comes in many forms, many of which are largely independent of mathematical and verbal reasoning power. Moreover, the difference between a mathematical expert and a mathematical genius is more likely, I suggest, a consequence of culture, environment, temperament, opportunity (to do nothing but think about a mathematical problem until, “little by little it opens up”), as that obsessive genius Isaac Newton put it, than of IQ.

    By claiming intelligence to be a function of those narrow abilities that determine IQ, you are ignoring much of what constitutes intelligent behavior: path-finding in the wilderness, recognition of odors and sounds of the jungle, all of the complex of abilities upon which musicianship depends, and obviously much, much more. And all of these abilities are subject to enhancement in varying degrees through many cultural and environmental factors.

    Anyway, it is interesting to speculate upon how psychologists will define intelligence a generation or so from now when everyone has an AI agent in their shirt pocket, or perhaps implanted in their skull, and no one bothers any longer to develop skill either at mathematics or any kind of formal logical analysis. Will everyone then be deemed stupid, I wonder, as IQ’s fall (are already falling in America, surely) or will the concept of intelligence, even in the psychological research community, evolve?

  168. Realist says:
    @CanSpeccy

    I’ve probably heard them all. Along with jokes about every race and ethnic group on the planet.

  169. Realist says:

    Cutting through all the SJW bullshit…..genetics is responsible for at least 80% of a persons IQ.

    Deal with it.

    • Replies: @RaceRealist88
  170. @RaceRealist88

    Extremely similar comment you did in Pumpkin Pershon…

    • Replies: @RaceRealist88
  171. @szopen

    “Or you can get MZ twins and DZ twins and control for taht part of environment.”

    Humans aren’t cattle.

  172. Intelligence without

    heuristic/factual understanding;

    creativity capacity;

    wisdom capacity/judgment [all them often correlated specially at specific ways]

    it’s exactly what**

    IQ*

    There are three important aspects constructs intelligence domain

    creativity capacity

    analytical capacity

    chrystallized capacity

    IQ simply don’t compare/measure/sacrifice** creativity, even there are divergent thinking tests available to be used jointly with it.

    IQ measure/compare analytical capacity WITHOUT a real-real-world context, for example, one of the most important of all: politics. IQ measure/compare analytical capacity in very superficial and even blind-spot ways. Analytical or fluid, basically the same thing.

    IQ, yes, compare/measure chrystallized capacity specially semantic type, seems autobiographic memory is not strongly directed with IQ, or less than semantic memory.

    So, if you have a big semantic memory so it’s likely you will be good on IQ tests namely on verbal tests.

    Always bear in such stubborn minds that IQ is about QUANTITATIVE aspect of intelligence and not, QUALITATIVE or TOTAL [quant + qual], and the second is impossibly to be measured without a real world context, i mean, heuristic/factual understanding, creativity and reason or wisdom.

    Another way or perspective to analyse intelligence is via emotional, intellectual and cognitive. Again, IQ is, in my view, very good to measure the late, but not so to measure the first two, even it’s expected to have a positive correlation. Emotional intelligence is the otherwise of naivety, objectively inappropriate behavior, lack of factual understanding of another people and it’s include racial differences. And that most people it’s expected will not have a higher emotional intelligence but it’s doesn’t mean it don’t exist because we tend to behave in emotionally smart ways. Even emotion alone cannot be totally separated from some important cognitive attributions, the most significant example is ”capacity to judgement”. When we are interacting with immediate reality we are all the time judging it and using emotion to do it. Intellectual intelligence would be the combination of cognitive and emotional capacities, just like the center or mentalism-mechanicism spectrum.

  173. @szopen

    It was conceded long ago that MZ twins experience similar environments than DZ twins but they then use a circular argument saying that MZ twins make their environments similar because of their genes. Circular argumentation. Fallacious.

  174. @utu

    “The only argument, in my opinion, that has some validity is that MZ twins evoke similar responses from the environment because they are more alike than DZ twins so they end up having more similar environments within a family.”

    This is exactly the point.

    “There are not that many cases but still some studies were made and r_mz for twins separated at birth is still very large (≈0.5).

    Correlation between randomly picked people born on the same date will probably be close to zero while r_mz≈0.5.”

    Which study are you referring to?

    “Personally my sympathies are with Richardson who you parroting here because the IQists (here I could list many many objective and subjective reasons why I do not like them) irritate me but there are some limits to reality denial for me. While you on the other hand have already demonstrated your talents during the discussion on diet and nutrition. You and IQisst have similar doctrinaire mentality I do not like. That you and them are on the opposite sides of the barricade does not change my attitude. It is not only about who is right or wrong but about methodology where means justify ends.”

    I agree its about methodology, but I’m sure you know I used to be an IQ-ist as well. My views have obviously changed.

    “My position is that I am also skeptical of twin studies and suspect they overestimate heritability. For this reason I am looking forward to GWAS and Steve Hsu results because if Steve Hsu would demonstrate that he can explain 20%, 30%, 40%, or 50% of variance using just SNPs on huge sample and large validation sample I will have to throw a towel. But if GWAS and Hsu stagnate and get stuck around 7% level like this paper then the missing heritability gap will have to be explained by looking at other factors (like epigenetic or biome) to make sense of high correlation between twins. BTW, Steve Hsu is quiet recently.”

    No doubt about it. Look up Schonemann (1997, On Models and Muddles of Heritability) and see how he says IQ heritability estimates “surpass anything found in the animal kingdom”.

    And of course epigenetic effects and biome would cause differences. In fact epigenetic effects would come up on heritability estimates as “genetic” when it was originally induced by the environment. There are many ways in which heritability is overestimated. But they’re useless for humans and have to go.

    Missing heritability can be explained by the simple fact that twin studies are based on flaws and fallacies.

    • Replies: @RaceRealist88
    , @utu
  175. @res

    Two conclusions:

    EEA is true (differences between MZ and DZ twins is genetic).

    EEA is false (differences between MZ and DZ twins is environmental).

    The EEA can’t be ‘half true’ or ‘one quarter true’. It’s either true or false, therefore either genes or environment that causes the differences between MZ and DZ twins.

    • Replies: @res
  176. @Realist

    How is the conclusion drawn?

    • Replies: @Realist
  177. @RaceRealist88

    And heritability estimates assume additive, independent effects. Do genes work independent of environment? Gene-gene, gene-environment interaction screws up the formula. It assumes an outdated model of the gene.

  178. @RaceRealist88

    ”Heritability” look like estimate inheritance without inheritance or in pure way, what i mean, analyse IQ inheritance without a always ”familiar-contextual” inheritance, the pure value of intergenerational transmissibility of given feature…

    Another possible challenge is that humans are already ”very’ biologically diverse within their own families so the value of ”heritability” or whatever must be subtracted, or not, just playing with the words and doing a beautiful soap, ;)

  179. @Santoculto

    People said similar things about the study all over the internet…

    • Replies: @Santoculto
  180. @CanSpeccy

    “But you insist, contrary to common usage, that intelligence is what is measured with an IQ test”

    IQ isn’t construct valid therefore we can’t logically state that IQ tests test ‘intelligence’.

    • Replies: @CanSpeccy
  181. res says:
    @RaceRealist88

    You really don’t see how that is a false dichotomy and the differences between MZ and DZ twins can be on a continuum from 0-100% on the environmental and genetic influence split?!

    By your reasoning, if I understand correctly, the EEA is “false” if the environmental influence is > 0%. And then you dichotomize that into being the same as = 100%. I think you have been reading too many “debunking the Bell Curve” books if you think that is sound reasoning.

    In a previous thread (about six months ago) I asked you about how Ken Richardson’s arguments applied for height. For example: https://www.unz.com/jthompson/men-4-points-ahead/#comment-2040678
    and https://www.unz.com/jthompson/men-4-points-ahead/#comment-2040918
    I don’t recall you ever making a substantive response to that (you did beg off a few times IIRC). I don’t think it is worth taking Ken Richardson’s work seriously until you explain why his ideas did not cause problems with the Compressed Sensing results for predicting out of sample height from the genomes. As I said in one of those earlier comments: “The great tragedy of science – the slaying of a beautiful hypothesis by an ugly fact.”

    • Replies: @utu
    , @RaceRealist88
  182. utu says:
    @RaceRealist88

    Environment differences form MZ and DZ twins

    I can imagine various scenarios that MZ twins live in a different environment from DZ twins. MZ twins are less likely to have preferential treatment. Father of DZ twins may like one twin more for whatever reasons and may spend talking more or playing chess more with one twin than other. In case of identical twins preferential treatment is less likely as parents have difficulty telling them apart.

    But I find it difficult to believe that these differences will result in huge correlation differences like r_mz=0.7 and r_dz=0.35.

    Which study are you referring to?

    I think Minnesota study had small (<150) sample of twins separated at birth and their correlation was high. How can you or Richardson explain it? If you draw a random sample of pairs the correlation will be zero.

    Missing heritability can be explained by the simple fact that twin studies are based on flaws and fallacies.

    This is not a fact yet. Yes, there are some flaws and some fallacies. The algebra they are using to calculate heritability does not include all terms and mathematically is muddled.

    So Richardson believes that correlation in GWAS is due to stratification and that twin studies do not measure heritability at all.

    Does Richardson believe that heritability of IQ if it was measured properly is zero?

    Does Richardson believe that some talents related to intelligence in broad sense are heritable? I am asking to find out whether he is just a tabula rasa person or whether he just hate the IQist and their spiel.

    • Replies: @utu
  183. utu says:
    @res

    I don’t think it is worth taking Ken Richardson’s work seriously until you explain why his ideas did not cause problems with the Compressed Sensing results for predicting out of sample height from the genomes.

    To be fair height is not IQ. I do not think they make the EEA argument in case of height. Besides Hsu has still some way to go to get the twin based heritability for height. Is it 80%? Hsu got 40% with 10,000 SNPs.

    • Replies: @res
  184. Realist says:
    @RaceRealist88

    Through a myriad of studies. Educate yourself!

  185. utu says:
    @utu

    The algebra they are using to calculate heritability does not include all terms and mathematically is muddled.

    I will show mathematically that heritability based on twins is too high.

    From what I have seen it is always assumed that the variables x-nature and y-nurture can be separated, i.e., the variance of the trait t is the sum of variances due to x and y:

    Vt=Vx+Vy

    This is only true when t(x,y)=g(x)+h(y). In real world however 2D functions can’t be expressed as a sum of two 1D functions in general, so the true equation is as follow:

    t(x,y)=g(x)+h(y)+∆(x,y)

    where ∆(x,y) is residual function, in which nature can’t be further disentangled from nurture. The question is how to define g(x) and h(y) because they are not uniques as also g(x)+c and h(y)-c for any constant c will do. There is one way that brings us directly to the heritability issue.

    Find g(x) that minimizes the rms differences ||t(x,y)-g(x)|| for all x and y and find h(y) that minimizes rms differences ||t(x,y)-h(y)||. Then variances of these two functions have the following relationship with the variance of the trait t(x,y):

    Vt≥Vg+Vh

    And Vg/Vt is heritability as variance explained by nature and Vh/Vt is “nurterability” as variance explained by nurture.

    Then the residual function

    ∆(x,y)=t(x,y)-g(x)-h(y)

    and it is non-zero if Vt>Vg+Vh

    So if nature explains, say 45% it does not mean that nurture explains remaining 55%. Nurture alone may explain only 30% while remaining 25%=100%-(45%+30%) is explained by both nature and nurture interactions that can’t be disentangled, that are nit additive.

    The function g(x) is the predictor function that a method like that of Hsu is suppose to find. But we can look at it in terms of clones or multiple identical twins. It can be easily proven that minimization of ||t(x,y)-g(x)|| because it is rms norm has the following solution:

    g(x)= {Average of t(x,y) over all y’s}

    So if we have clones with fixed x- nature for many different nurtures y1, y2, …yn then

    g(x)=[t(x,y1)+...+t(x,yn)]/n

    But we do not have clones. Only twins (n=2). Then the average of traits for two twins is the best estimator we have of the predictor function but not the best there is. This predictor function can be tested only on twin data because we do not have more clones. It can be shown that the residuals will be expressed as correlation of traits between twins. Which means that we have arrived at correlation as heritability expression just like in twin studies. So if we can show that this heritability is too large then we demonstrated that heritability from twin studies is too large.

    The residuals ||t(x,y)-g(x)|| are smaller because they are only calculated on the subset (consisting of twins) not on all data. For this reason the heritability using twin data is overestimated.

    Note that I did not use any gene-environment mambo jumbo interactions in this argument. Also I did not use any statistical notions like covariance or independence of variables, etc. This argument is more general and purely mathematical that is valid for all 2D functions. The subset of data consisting of twins only is used to define the predictor function and this function is used to minimize residuals of not all data but the subset only and thus by necessity it leads to overestimation of heritability.

    Perhaps I could publish this somewhere. Perhaps Richardson would be interested. The IQist will want it buried.

    • Replies: @res
    , @RaceRealist88
  186. One of the big issues about twins “heritability” is personality differences. We born with a RELATIVE plasticity of behavior or personality. There are many people who lie or hide their true personality, indeed most people do it at some extent. Maybe many inconsistencies can be found in methods and measurements used by psychologists to analyze, categorize and compare individual features.

    And remember. Humans are by far the most individual living being. We are all unique isn’t?? It’s mean something and may can affect “heritability” or inheritance measurements and comparisons.

  187. Primary and current mutational load also can have a impact in this measurement.

  188. res says:
    @utu

    I do not think they make the EEA argument in case of height.

    Don’t twin studies rely on the same assumptions (like EEA) regardless of phenotype? I believe both the EEA and GWAS arguments being discussed here apply equally well for height and IQ. In other words, if height results are contrary to what those arguments predict then the same is likely to be true for IQ once sample sizes are large enough. The main differences I see are in a somewhat lower heritability for IQ and more controversy (plus somewhat less accuracy) over the measurement of IQ. An interesting question is how much of the lower heritability for IQ is explained by the increased measurement difficulty.

    Besides Hsu has still some way to go to get the twin based heritability for height. Is it 80%? Hsu got 40% with 10,000 SNPs.

    There go the goalposts. Do you guys keep them on wheels to make moving them about more convenient?

    To be serious though, heritability is not just about SNPs and by the best estimates available they captured almost all of the SNP heritability for height.

    • Replies: @utu
  189. CanSpeccy says: • Website
    @RaceRealist88

    IQ isn’t construct valid therefore we can’t logically state that IQ tests test ‘intelligence’.

    Yes, that is the heart of the matter. Psychologists use a circular definition of intelligence to justify their claim to be able to measure it:

    What does an IQ test measure? It measures intelligence.
    What is intelligence? It is what an IQ test measures.

    Pressed on the matter, they will present you with “g.” But g is, to use the current terminology, a nothingburger. The correlation coefficients from which g is derived are minor. So yes, of course there are some common factors in all aspects of intelligent behavior. You need a beating heart to pump blood and oxygen to the brain. You need a functioning liver to supply glucose to the brain, etc. But that’s it: g could be nothing more than an index of cardiovascular health.

    • Replies: @phil
  190. utu says:
    @res

    To be serious though, heritability is not just about SNPs and by the best estimates available they captured almost all of the SNP heritability for height.

    So what is it about if not about SNPs? Perhaps they captured all SNPs but they did not capture all heritability? Perhaps nonlinear polygenic score will do it.

    • Replies: @res
  191. utu says:
    @res

    I have only responded to commonly seen equation

    P=G+E

    (Like here https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heritability) which is a starting point of all discussing and deriving heritability and so on. This equation couldn’t be generally true. So I have just asked a question what is true in general. There must be a third term ∆(G,E) depending on both G and E that can’t be replaced with additive terms of single variable each. This fact may have a significant consequences on how we understand heritability and how we measure it. Let suppose that twin studies measure some heritability. For height it is 80%. Hsu with his predictor function can account for 40% where he seemed to exhausted all SNPs. Let suppose that adding nonlinear terms in Hsu’s polygenic score predictor function will not make much difference. Let say he will get 50% with non-linear predictor function. How then should we explain 80% vs. 50% gap? Is the term ∆(G,E) responsible for the gap? How should we understand twin based heritability?

    I think these are interesting issues that I am willing to look at and discuss but not in the environment of partisan fight where on one side you have Richardson who seems to be a tabula rasa man at least when IQ is concerned and on the other side you have IQists who get defensive when one is trying to probe some holes in the structure of their narrative.

    I have made it clear already that variance explained with some polygenic score fit will be the ultimate argument for me in favor of heritability of a given trait. And if this variance explained will be smaller than heritability derived form twin studies then it will prove that twin studies do not measure heritability, that the variance explained is smaller than what they indicate. And the criticisms of twin studies by people like Richardson and those critics who are less radical than him will be vindicated.

    What Hsu undertook seemed to be the most natural and obvious, at least to any mathematician or physics, path. I would like him to proceed instead of leaving the work to the snail paced GWAS research. Yes, it is important to know what genes do and how and where they are expressed but you do not need to know it to find a mathematical predictor function first.

    • Replies: @res
  192. phil says:
    @CanSpeccy

    Get serous. g differences explain a substantial amount of the variance in a variety of phenomena. General mental ability has been the single best predictor of job performance according to 100 years of research.

    Deary recently defined intelligence as general cognitive function. That’s a good start.

    Don’t create straw men.

    • Replies: @CanSpeccy
  193. res says:
    @utu

    So what is it about if not about SNPs?

    Rare variants and CNVs are two examples.

    • Replies: @utu
  194. res says:
    @utu

    on the other side you have IQists who get defensive when one is trying to probe some holes in the structure of their narrative.

    I can’t speak for anyone else, but for me it is less about defensiveness than fatigue and frustration with all of the ridiculous arguments being put forward by people who can’t seem to be bothered to do the least bit of research concerning preexisting work. If you don’t know about GxE or CNVs (to cite just two examples from this thread) you really should spend more time learning the basics of these fields before making pronouncements as if you were some kind of expert.

  195. CanSpeccy says: • Website
    @phil

    General mental ability has been the single best predictor of job performance according to 100 years of research.

    Well that is the point of an IQ test isn’t it? To predict something.

    I never suggested that people with high IQ’s are not intelligent. They are obviously intelligent at doing IQ tests, which means they have good verbal and mathematical reasoning ability. But traditional academic tests do as well at predicting both academic potential and workplace success, or so Lynn has concluded.

    However, if you want to know if someone has the hand:eye coordination to be a surgeon, or the ear to be a violin virtuoso, (both forms of cleverness that the dictionary allows are forms of intelligence) then some other kind of test is necessary.

    As for wisdom, judgement, humor, etc., we don’t even have a clue how to measure them, yet they are surely the higher forms of intelligence.

    Deary recently defined intelligence as general cognitive function. That’s a good start.

    Good start at what? To define intelligence as general cognitive function is entirely circular.

    g differences explain a substantial amount of the variance in a variety of phenomena

    g is based on correlations among tests of different mental attributes and in general those correlations are low. Overall r squared is less than 0.1: e.g.: Pearsonian intercorrelation matrix.

    • Replies: @Santoculto
  196. utu says:
    @res

    Rare variants and CNVs are two examples

    .

    BS, BS, BS and cop out. You are a pretentious fraud res. Sad case, really.

    • Replies: @res
  197. res says:
    @utu

    What on earth do you mean? How are rare variants and CNVs not relevant to non-SNP heritability?

  198. utu says:

    non-SNP heritability

    Only these parts of DNA can account for phenotype variance that have non-zero variance within population. Any position in DNA that has a non-zero variance is from definition SNP. If there were no SNP’s we all would be clones of one master original.

    SNP are these locations in DNA where changes occur within population. If in some location in DNA there is no change there is no point in looking at it. By an arbitrary convention SNPs that are more frequent than 1% are considered. But this convention is arbitrary. Set the threshold to 0.01% or whatever and you get your rare variants. Rare variants are SNPs.

    If you have 0.01% variant how much variance you expect it possibly can explain if it is present only in 1 of 10,000 subjects?

    One can make CNV to go away conceptually by changing the mapping, redefining the address book of SNPs and then it all comes down to SNPs again.

    • Replies: @res
  199. @CanSpeccy

    You mention IQ 120. My point was that you were probably wrong. Nothing special about IQ 120.

    http://www.unz.com/jthompson/genius-twinkling-in-dark

    • Replies: @Santoculto
    , @CanSpeccy
  200. @CanSpeccy

    What is wisdom for you* I thought there is a way to ”measure” this.

  201. @James Thompson

    Based on… quantitative studies…

  202. @jacques sheete

    Education in these genetic studies almost always refers to years of education. That is because years of education is collected along with other key personal information in cross-sectional DNA databases. It is simply a data availability issue, and obviously an important limitation, that this variable proxies for “education” understood more broadly.

    • Replies: @James Thompson
  203. @Peter Johnson

    Agreed. A weak proxy, but better than nothing. However, there are increasingly large samples now available with real intelligence test data.

  204. CanSpeccy says: • Website
    @James Thompson

    You mention IQ 120. My point was that you were probably wrong. Nothing special about IQ 120.

    I did not say or suggest that there was anything special about IQ 120. What I said, and what I see no reason to abandon was:

    … to be a mathematical genius or a physics genius or any other kind of genius you may need some basic aptitude measurable as IQ. But beyond a basic requirement for IQ, rarely more than 120 or so, genius, or intelligence as that term is understood by the vast majority of users of the English language, is a matter not of IQ, but of temperament, education, environment, and the mere chance of being born in the culture, in the age, and in the social class in which a particular form of genius can emerge. (emphasis added)

    What the actual IQ cutoff is for mastery of the higher math, I don’t know, but if it is possible for someone with an IQ of, say, 95, or 105 or even 115 to obtain a first class degree in mathematics, then what possible value can there be in measuring IQ?

    What I challenge is the concept underlying the measurement of IQ; namely, that it represents a unitary feature of mind. This is unlikely for many reasons, not least, the modularity of the brain. Moreover, in some circumstances, there is direct evidence of cognitive capacities with unique variances. for example:

    Delis, DL, et al. 2003. The myth of testing construct validity using factor analysis of correlations with normal or mixed clinical populations: Lessons from memory assessment (J Int Neuropsychol Soc. 2003 Sep;9(6):936-46.)

    …cognitive measures that share variance in the intact brain-thereby giving the facade of assessing a unitary construct-can dissociate and contribute to unique variance in the damaged brain…

    • Replies: @Santoculto
  205. res says:
    @utu

    Any position in DNA that has a non-zero variance is from definition SNP.

    Do you happen to recall what that S in SNP stands for? It does not work as you said. A good example is indels (insertions and deletions, but you should know this). They can add or remove amino acids completely, OR if they are a non-multiple of three nucleotides in length they can render a coding sequence into complete gibberish. The downstream SNPs might still exist (SNP detection is a local thing), but they are meaningless.

    If there were no SNP’s we all would be clones of one master original.

    Nice attempt at rhetoric. Do you think statements like that constitute an argument?

    If you have 0.01% variant how much variance you expect it possibly can explain if it is present only in 1 of 10,000 subjects?

    Not a great deal individually. A worthwhile point. Far from decisive though.

    Those rare variants can be important. IIRC I recently linked a paper here looking at rare variants in disease which found some quite large effect sizes for some of them.

    And then there is the question of how many strongly deleterious rare variants there are. If one explains on the order of 0.001% of variance and there are tens of thousands of them that becomes important.

    One can make CNV to go away conceptually by changing the mapping, redefining the address book of SNPs and then it all comes down to SNPs again.

    I’m not sure how well SNP chips can detect absolute numbers of CNVs. There is also the issue of mutations occurring in the same/different copy/ies of a gene. This is similar to the issue of whether mutations occur on the same DNA strand. I don’t believe current SNP chips detect this (it’s called phasing if you want to delve deeper) and it may very well be another source of “non-SNP” heritability. In short, the issue is that two disabling mutations have a larger phenotypic effect if they occur on different DNA strands than if they occur on the same strand–once a gene is broken (well, I am simplifying, there are degrees) it is broken. Breaking both copies is generally worse than breaking one copy twice. To be clear, this is not just nonlinearity. It also requires knowing which strand each SNP is on (and then quantifying the combined effects, which is hard!).

    I think there is also an issue with whether or not CNVs capture entire functional genes. CNVs are not just sums of SNPs. The connectivity matters.

    Utu, I know I come off as patronizing when I say this, but you really do need to take a genetics class if you want to engage on this topic to the depth you attempt.

    P.S. To add something a bit more interesting to this comment, this paper and its abstract give some idea of how common variation beyond the “typical” SNPs is: http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0059494

    Abstract

    Whole genome sequencing studies are essential to obtain a comprehensive understanding of the vast pattern of human genomic variations. Here we report the results of a high-coverage whole genome sequencing study for 44 unrelated healthy Caucasian adults, each sequenced to over 50-fold coverage (averaging 65.8×). We identified approximately 11 million single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), 2.8 million short insertions and deletions, and over 500,000 block substitutions. We showed that, although previous studies, including the 1000 Genomes Project Phase 1 study, have catalogued the vast majority of common SNPs, many of the low-frequency and rare variants remain undiscovered. For instance, approximately 1.4 million SNPs and 1.3 million short indels that we found were novel to both the dbSNP and the 1000 Genomes Project Phase 1 data sets, and the majority of which (∼96%) have a minor allele frequency less than 5%. On average, each individual genome carried ∼3.3 million SNPs and ∼492,000 indels/block substitutions, including approximately 179 variants that were predicted to cause loss of function of the gene products. Moreover, each individual genome carried an average of 44 such loss-of-function variants in a homozygous state, which would completely “knock out” the corresponding genes. Across all the 44 genomes, a total of 182 genes were “knocked-out” in at least one individual genome, among which 46 genes were “knocked out” in over 30% of our samples, suggesting that a number of genes are commonly “knocked-out” in general populations. Gene ontology analysis suggested that these commonly “knocked-out” genes are enriched in biological process related to antigen processing and immune response. Our results contribute towards a comprehensive characterization of human genomic variation, especially for less-common and rare variants, and provide an invaluable resource for future genetic studies of human variation and diseases.

    • Replies: @utu
  206. @CanSpeccy

    … to be a mathematical genius or a physics genius or any other kind of genius you may need some basic aptitude measurable as IQ. But beyond a basic requirement for IQ, rarely more than 120 or so, genius, or intelligence as that term is understood by the vast majority of users of the English language, is a matter not of IQ, but of temperament, education, environment, and the mere chance of being born in the culture, in the age, and in the social class in which a particular form of genius can emerge. (emphasis added)

    AS ALWAYS happen ”intelligence-researchers” barely study creativity… so, they to be drifting.

    In order of importance or relevance:

    - Temperament/IQ or cognition;

    - environment

    – Education is part of temperament {motivation + appropriate environment] but more about motivation because even in not ideal environment you can create things, i mean, in adverse situations.

    Iqists

    hate;
    don’t understand;
    don’t care about creativity, they are full of biases about anything which are IQ. I don’t think it’s sound too much strawman.

    • Replies: @Santoculto
    , @CanSpeccy
  207. @Santoculto

    …. which are NIET IQ…

    Sanlonguito de mi corazón!!

  208. CanSpeccy says: • Website
    @Santoculto

    Iqists hate;
    don’t understand;
    don’t care about creativity

    There are many aspects of intelligence that the IQist ignore. What their tests provide, primarily, is an assessment of verbal and mathematical reasoning ability.

    Such tests are not without value. If I were the war minister of Ruritania with 100,000 fresh conscripts to deal with, I’d probably subject them to a so-called IQ test and assign the top 5% for officer training and the bottom 5% to peeling potatoes.

    The problem with the IQists is a lack of PQ (philosophical quotient). They evaluate people for several abilities that can be assessed with a quick paper and pencil test, and call that a measure of intelligence.Then, based on those results, they grade people on a linear scale from moron to five-star genius, while ignoring that the moron may have the musical genius of Derek Paravicini, or the visual and artistic gifts of Stephen Wiltshire, whereas the five-star genius may be incapable of carrying a tune, recognizing a face, or cutting a two by four square.

    The IQists justify this presumption by claiming that their tests measure a unitary property of the mind, which justifies their fascistic claim to be able to grade all of humanity on a uni-dimensional scale, thereby establishing a global pecking order for once and all.

    But the evidence, neurological, anatomical and even, psychometric, refutes their claim. Intelligence is not a unitary property of mind and, therefore, IQ is a misnomer for whatever it is that the IQist’s measure. Moreover the use of the term IQ involves an egregious abuse of millions of people subject to the IQist measure, since it labels them in a way that in no way reflects the multiplicity of their natural talents.

    As RR88 points out, the IQist’s notion of intelligence has no “construct validity,” nor therefore, any operational definition. Instead, reliance is placed on a circular definition. IQ tests measure intelligence, therefore, intelligence is what IQ tests measure.

    If Psychometricians would abandon their arrogant pretensions, and acknowledge that what their tests attempt to measure are specific abilities, these the product of both genes and environment, they would be in a position to offer a modestly useful service with minimal risk of doing harm. Unfortunately, the pursuit of power has always been the besetting sin of the students of mind, from Freud to Watson, to Skinner and Eysenck. In view of the absurdity of their past blunders, one might have hoped for greater humility in today’s practitioners, but it seems one will hope in vain.

    • Replies: @Santoculto
  209. @CanSpeccy

    There are many aspects of intelligence that the IQist ignore. What their tests provide, primarily, is an assessment of verbal and mathematical reasoning ability.

    Seems obvious to perceive.

    The problem with the IQists is a lack of PQ (philosophical quotient).

    Bingo!
    What i said some times here: IQ is great to find the best WORKERS but not exactly the best HUMANS/BEINGS, i mean, in our totality.

    They evaluate people for several abilities that can be assessed with a quick paper and pencil test, and call that a measure of intelligence.

    Yes, they call cognition = intelligence and they even don’t believe in the existence of emotional intelligence, what a flock, humans as well maybe most of living beings, behave in emotionally-smart ways. JUST because emotional intelligence has been used, racked by leftoids to attack IQ and racial differences, IQists decided to act in same way, so childish and dumb, jee!!

    So, they separated intelligence [something simply don't exist in real world] from emotion and call only cognition as intelligence.

    Then, based on those results, they grade people on a linear scale from moron to five-star genius, while ignoring that the moron may have the musical genius of Derek Paravicini, or the visual and artistic gifts of Stephen Wiltshire, whereas the five-star genius may be incapable of carrying a tune, recognizing a face, or cutting a two by four square.

    Yes, but you need less extreme exception-nal examples to be used because may exception prove the rule in this case and i don’t believe.

    I’m perfectly fine to accept the genius is not even positively correlated with some very important features almost people desire, regardless for what, and most of this set of features are basically of wisdom. We have mental disorders, and i believe wisdom is a kind of ”extreme’ mental ORDER. Wisdom is the frequency of intelligence, ”intelligence”/IQ is the size and at priori intensity.

    The problem is that they OVERVALUE what they believe it’s all conceptual and practical totality of intelligence as a incomparably good thing, on other words, they don’t care about evil geniuses and specially those who have the same lower moral levels than many them.

    IQ is all about size, intensity of cognitive features, a very important part of intelligence, it’s quantitative, but in the QUALITATIVE aspects they not just are far to be knowledeable but seems they don’t want accept them/quality of intelligence.

    The IQists justify this presumption by claiming that their tests measure a unitary property of the mind, which justifies their fascistic claim to be able to grade all of humanity on a uni-dimensional scale, thereby establishing a global pecking order for once and all.

    You must need separate what is a fact and what is a value. Based on what IQ reach i don’t believe they are factually wrong about that, also seems a obvious thing, but the problem is the intentions, and specially the hidden intentions.

    But the evidence, neurological, anatomical and even, psychometric, refutes their claim. Intelligence is not a unitary property of mind and, therefore, IQ is a misnomer for whatever it is that the IQist’s measure. Moreover the use of the term IQ involves an egregious abuse of millions of people subject to the IQist measure, since it labels them in a way that in no way reflects the multiplicity of their natural talents.

    I believe in three scenarios

    a species where evolution promoted only one type/unitary of intelligence.
    a species where evolution promoted a diversity type, only-one and combinatory ones
    a species where evolution promoted a hyper-specialization within itself or just higher [psycho] cognitive diversity.

    Human scenario look like the second one. And also, i believe we must need differentiate what is basis and what is not. I believe human intelligence is unitary in its basis/bottom but become very specialized in the top.

    Yes, i think seems extremely important we have analytical and deep support in psychometric research, because just the psychometric results don’t appear to be enough to give a complete analysis about people, at individual levels and having reverberations at collective levels.

    As RR88 points out, the IQist’s notion of intelligence has no “construct validity,” nor therefore, any operational definition. Instead, reliance is placed on a circular definition. IQ tests measure intelligence, therefore, intelligence is what IQ tests measure.

    I believe no have validation and be conceptually partial is two different things. Yes, they are very lazy and incorrect in this aspect even it’s appear to be a strawman, it’s something IQism is in its very basis and it’s practiced routinely, intelligence concept was or has been replaced by IQ in many psychometrician works.

    If Psychometricians would abandon their arrogant pretensions, and acknowledge that what their tests attempt to measure are specific abilities, these the product of both genes and environment,

    Well, but if at least IQ measure some ”specific abilities” so i think it measure something and it’s valuable in the end of day. But i don’t believe verbal and mathematical are SPECIFIC as music ability really is, but a very basicl/primary capacity which represent the human intelligence foundation.

    What i already said here

    we have: creative, analytical, memory abilities, basically. We perceive/analytical, we internalize/memorize and we create/invent/combinated. IQ measure/and compare very well the late: memory, specifically semantic memory//general knowledge. About analytical ability, IQ measure in: non-real world context or very superficially. About creative ability, it’s what we already know, IQ correlates accidentally with it because there are some overlapping between GENERAL cognitive intelligence and creativity. My opinion is that highly creative people tend to have great cognitive amplitude between their abilities and because IQ is mostly centralized in generalities, it’s missed.

    • Replies: @CanSpeccy
  210. Factorize says:

    res, very exciting!
    We had the g factor and now we have the p factor!

    When are the grown-ups going to get this and start putting in the serious resources
    that the p factor GWAS’ deserve? If psychopathology is psychometrically unitary, then a utopian
    world without “differently normal” might be on the horizon. The social investment returns of the genetics of psychopathogy just got much more bullish.

    https://www.biorxiv.org/content/early/2018/03/23/287987

    • Replies: @James Thompson
  211. CanSpeccy says: • Website
    @Santoculto

    Don’t think we’ll ever see a useful test for wisdom.

    Wisdom is generally assessed retrospectively.

    That is because it concerns questions that are too complex to judge on the basis of mere calculation.

    For example, when Hannibal decided to take elephants over the Alps, how many of his commanders said “hey, good thinking, not.” Several, I should think.

    And if something had spooked the beasts in transit and they’d stampeded over a cliff, the nay sayers would have been proved right.

    Likewise, with Elon Musk’s plan for the colonization of Mars. If the first ship with 100 on board blows up on the launch pad, the second ship with 100 on board crashes on landing at Mars and the third with 100 on board blows up during take-off for the return journey, Musk’s reputation for judgment will be at zero.

    But if the first party arrives at Mars safely and returns home safely, then Musk could run for President, and win.

    • Replies: @Santoculto
    , @Santoculto
  212. utu says:
    @res

    SNP could be so redefined as to encompass all other changes. Like for example MNP or CLUMPED which are really sequences of adjacent SNPs but since they are adjacent we do not call them SNP. INDEL also can be seen as an SNPs. Here it is how it is done now but it does not have to be so:

    https://genome.sph.umich.edu/wiki/Variant_classification
    1. Trim each allele with respect to the reference sequence individually
    2. Inspect length, defined as length of alternate allele minus length of reference allele.
    1. if length = 0
    1. if length(ref) = 1 and nucleotides differ, classify as SNP (count ts and tv too)
    2. if length(ref) > 1
    1. if all nucleotides differ, classify as MNP (count ts and tv too)
    2. if not all nucleotides differ, classify as CLUMPED (count ts and tv too)
    2. if length ≠ 0, classify as INDEL
    1. if shorter allele is of length 1
    1. if shorter allele does not match either of the end nucleotides of the longer allele, add SNP
    classification
    2. if shorter allele length > 1
    1. compare the shorter allele sequence with the subsequence in the 5′ end of the longer allele
    (count ts and tv too)
    1. if all nucleotides differ, add MNP classification
    2. if not all nucleotides differ, add CLUMPED classification
    3. Variant classification is the union of the classifications of each allele present in the variant.
    4. If all alleles are the same length, add MNP classification.

    Feynman talked about lesson he got form his father lessons of not being limited by names and classification.

    The bottom line is that when constructing any predictor function you include in it everything what is there, i.e., all differences with respect to a reference DNA to which you can assign any value of numerical trait as an offset. This is what you start with and then you look for the function with minimum number of parameters just like Hsu.

    Pls to do try to obfuscate issues with your BS of superior knowledge of things that are really irrelevant to the gist of the idea. You know exactly what I have meant and your objections really came from ill will.

    As far whether the idea that rare variants in large number can account for trait distribution in any significant way one must look at distribution of polygenic score consisting of say 10,000 rare (<0.01%) SNPs. This polygenic score may account for wings of the distribution but not for its main body within ± 2SD.

    As far as getting educated I will pass on your suggestion. Too much learning dulls one's intelligence and ability to think independently. I do not want to deplete already limited amount of intelligence I am left with in my old age.

    • Replies: @res
  213. res says:
    @utu

    SNP could be so redefined as to encompass all other changes.

    Or you could just use existing terminology which is well understood by people in the field. I’ll leave it as an exercise for the reader which approach usually works better.

    Feynman talked about lesson he got form his father lessons of not being limited by names and classification.

    This is actually a good thing to bring up. Striking a balance between doing things your own way and basing understanding on prior work can be difficult. IMO going your own way is much more difficult and best reserved for cases where one has exceptional knowledge, ability, and willingness to put in a great deal of time and energy. It also works better if one happens have Feynman (or Feynman pere most likely) level ability.

    There is a school of thought that always doing things your own way fosters an innovative mind, which I think is where you are coming from. I have had very smart coworkers who always tried to take a cut at a problem before looking at other people’s approaches. There is something to be said for that (I try to follow that example to some degree, depending on my level of background in an area), but knowing how big a bite to take at a time can be challenging. I am pretty sure they did not try to reenvision entire academic fields (e.g. genetics) at once. I tend to prefer being innovative in how I make connections between bodies of existing knowledge rather than building everything from scratch. I am not Feynman and to pretend that I can do a better job of building all of the intellectual infrastructure (the work of thousands of smart people over decades) of one of my interests (here genetics) to the point where I can even begin to do new work is beyond hubris IMHO.

    Put simply, I prefer breadth over depth because I think multidisciplinary work is underemphasized and there are more opportunities there. It also allows me to seek out areas of interest and current potential. This requires reliance on domain experts accompanied by the testing of their conclusions. If you have read my comments here, do you really think I lack the willingness to challenge experts in their own domain? The problem is, to do that productively I must be able to communicate in their language, not make up my own. It also helps to make an effort to be polite and humble (e.g. always realize I might be the one making a mistake). I struggle with that sometimes (as is probably obvious to people who read my comments), but I think you are to the point of being a good cautionary example of what not to do.

    The funny thing is, growing up I had much more of a tendency to come up with my own ways of doing things than most people around me. Works better when one is much smarter than most of the surrounding people. Being like that becomes infinitely harder when one enters much more selective and competitive worlds.

    Pls to do try to obfuscate issues with your BS of superior knowledge of things that are really irrelevant to the gist of the idea.

    That is an odd objection. My point was about non-SNP heritability and I described what non-SNP meant in some detail. Highly relevant. And I’ll leave it to others to decide on the balance of clarity vs. obfuscation in our respective comments.

    You know exactly what I have meant and your objections really came from ill will.

    It must be nice to be absolutely certain of other people’s motivations all the time. When I see responses like yours my gut reaction is “Projection!” Hard to be sure if that is true or not, but it seems the most likely explanation to me on reflection. One tip, if you are going to be an innovative, Feynman-esque wonder do NOT assume other people always understand you. If anything, the opposite is more likely to be true.

    As far whether the idea that rare variants in large number can account for trait distribution in any significant way one must look at distribution of polygenic score consisting of say 10,000 rare (<0.01%) SNPs. This polygenic score may account for wings of the distribution but not for its main body within ± 2SD.

    Hard to say for sure (I’m not even sure if your last sentence is meaningful). One way to think about this is the idea of genetic load. It is important to remember that I am talking about explaining the missing heritability here. The numbers we see from GWAS etc. make it clear that much of the heritability is simply additive SNPs.

    As far as getting educated I will pass on your suggestion. Too much learning dulls one’s intelligence and ability to think independently. I do not want to deplete already limited amount of intelligence I am left with in my old age.

    Unsurprising, but still fascinating. Perhaps you could talk about some of the intellectual successes you have achieved with this approach?

    • Replies: @utu
  214. @Factorize

    This looks very promising, but the sample size will need to go up by one order of magnitude.

  215. @CanSpeccy

    When I have a translator in computer I will answer your comment above. I just tell you to try to answer point by point of my previous comment, don’t believe it’s a offense, just to this debate be more fluid and not with this abruptivity.

    Hbds and psychometricians always confuse outliers with outsiders. Geniuses are often or characteristically both. It’s not all outsiders who are brilliant. Indeed to be outsider you must have some disorder to be out of social evolutive chain and have a different existential and perceptual perspective. Outliers are those who are too beyond the average but still in-the social evolutive chain on the “right” or “left” side of bell life curve.

    A already provided here some times a proposed differentiation, qualitative differentiation among gifted people: high achievers, brilliant learners and creative thinkers. My belief is that IQ can access well the cognitive properties of the first group and less than the two last.

  216. Factorize says:

    res, it’s Christmas in March!
    Best Day ever!

    A comment on infoproc mentioned that the huge Educational GWAS results have finally been
    leaked. Almost 3000 SNPs. Wow. The IQome has been unlocked!
    Anyone know how much variance this explains (guess we could always sum up the betas).

    Humanity desperately needs to talk about what is happening now.
    We need leadership to help the discussion that needs to start.
    The journey to eugenica has started.

    Argument over.

    https://drive.google.com/file/d/1gF9a4oSvevU4gdbuRmDEbMZwIRiSHVK-/view

  217. @CanSpeccy

    Don’t think we’ll ever see a useful test for wisdom.

    Wisdom is generally assessed retrospectively.

    That is because it concerns questions that are too complex to judge on the basis of mere calculation.

    Another huge problem of IQ is that it’s works relatively well when it’s measure and compared great number of individuals but say little about individuals.

    I disagree in both three statements you did.

    I thought it’s perfectly possible to create a good test to analyse, rank, compare and measure wisdom or WQ. {Pay attention to the difference between ranking and comparison, IQ rank more than compare/part of analysis].

    Wisdom is not just by chrystallized intelligence or even fundamentally about experience, it’s also and considerably speaking about fluid skills [don't confuse with ''non-verbal'' skills].

    There is what Wisdom ”is’ and how people can reach it. You can do very good judgments without previous knowledge, just with the information you have in your hands. It’s just like a magic cube, always find a way to reach the reasonable or balanced judgment, the best of all, if everything exist fundamentally exist [and specially for long or indetermined term] because it’s in balance.

    Wisdom in my view can be used to both, complex and not so complex issues [or even very simple], the big problem of most people starts from their incapacity to accept that they commit mistakes, often frequently, in thinking and in action, specially moral ones. So many people can reach balance in their judgments just because their egos or instincts which blind them to find a path of universal ideality.

    What i said about frequency of intelligence versus intensity/size of intelligence. One of the big difference between both is in self knowledge. When i said ”i don’t know, or i’m not totally correct about this… i can be wrong”, i’m being more smarter or better, wiser, than when i try to ”rationalize” or self-deceive me that ”i’m perfectly capable to understand or to explain this” and find a way to show my size-intelligence/frivolously intelectual creativity. So this frequency or secrecy would happen all the time, already in the micro-level of our lives, from our homes to the big events or ”in the streets”, in interactions with another peoples and circumstances. Learning from the micro to the macro level or at least try to reach all levels, but always starting from the micro.

  218. @CanSpeccy

    From your Hungarian grandmother?

    • Replies: @CanSpeccy
  219. EH says:
    @Okechukwu

    Your wild assertions run contrary to all the research, of which you are entirely and deliberately ignorant. Your foolish posts are a waste of time even to read, so arguing with their maliciously ignorant author would be even more so.

    • Replies: @Okechukwu
  220. Factorize says:

    Very startling!
    Here are some of the numbers.

    The sum of the positive betas is 18.544.
    The sum of the negative betas is -17.062.

    If these betas are measured in IQ SDs (could anyone check whether this is true?), then we have:
    37.088 SD of IQ for the positives and 34.124 SDs (absolute) for the negatives.
    71.212 SD total. Double it for two good (or bad) gives 142.424 SD.

    Anyone interested in 2136 IQ?

    There are also another 7,000 SNPs reported that are below the genome wide significance line.
    Sum of the non-significant SNPs:
    37.379 positives and
    -36.573 negatives
    Double absolute values is 147.9 SD.

    219.1 SD 3286 IQ (upper bound with all SNPs included).

    Most of the large effect betas (positive and negative) reported were not p-value significant because
    they were either very high or very low frequency.

    Could try different populations to sort this out.
    For example, the largest positive effect size was for rs13786152613

    rs137861526 13 63818382 T C 0.005102 0.1 0.024 2.38E-05

    C allele frequency for Europeans is 0.006 and South Asian is 0.021

    Large effect betas (0.02-0.03) over 98% EAF are under the p-value line
    Large effect betas (0.02-0.03) under 2% EAF are under the p-value line

    Of the top 100 positive effects SNPs only 5 are genome wide significant at 5×10-8

    The figure from infoproc suggests to me that Asian IQ has been underestimated (perhaps due to environmental factors). If you move shift the Beijing Chinese results to the right on the regression line than the polygenic IQ score of 0.7 converts to an estimated IQ of 110.4
    (y=0.07x -1.5848; y~0.7)

    • Replies: @Wizard of Oz
    , @res
  221. @CanSpeccy

    I see you have had a lengthy dispute with James Thompson but it is right here that I think you have gone wrong. Of course you might have a tribal dialect that contradicts my view of common usage. But I think you miss the point that it is not being a good soccer player or brilliant pianist that causes people to attribute high intelligence but rather, in complete contrast, the ability to quickly make sense of the unfamiliar**. Speed and a good working memory are of the essence. Even if counsel’s brilliance in a superior court, getting an unexpected answer from an exprt witness or a difficult question from an Appeal Court judge will mostly be a result of endless preparation – on the particular brief but also generically from the follow up to or even preparation for his first law school lecture – it is speed of processing and the finding of the obscure answer to the surprise question that will count at least as much. And the more intellugent counsel is more likely to be able to reply confidently to the judge “With respect Your Honor I would answer that with the suggestion that the question embodies a category error” and be able to back it up. Of course I am not denying the contemporary aphorism about ten years to achieve mastery though I do suggest that a healthy person with an IQ of 150 might achieve it in 5 years of standard working days (i.e. assume comparable sleep requirements for all).
    ** I was about to add politicians as a test case except that I think the 140+ IQ only becomes really important if he/she is a short sleeper with immense stamina.

    • Replies: @CanSpeccy
  222. @Factorize

    I didn’t understand enough of the jargon to assess what you wrote but on the graph at the end I noted a surprisingly large gap between the Carribeans and the Puerto Ricans. Any explanation? Anyone?

  223. Jamrs Thompson – would you please explain what exactly “we used out metanalytic GWAS data to predict almost 7% of variation in intelligence….” tells us? What does that equate to in terms of correlations? What does it say about the accuracy of prediction? Does it mean that the null hypothesis in every case is IQ 100 but the metadata allows building on that to say that …. well what?

  224. res says:
    @Factorize

    I’m not sure how to interpret all of this, but some thoughts.

    Using EA as a proxy for IQ makes your extrapolation even more tenuous than usual.

    If you want to do an extrapolation, I think it would be good to double check that calculating a score based on all of the EAFs gives a reasonable size (say 0.4 – 0.6).

    About 40 points of IQ correspond to 0.9 on the genetic score in the graph. Beta in SD units seems like the logical assumption (regression on Z scores), but hard to reconcile with the 40/0.9 equivalence (~2.7 IQ SDs for less than 1 score point).

    I assume EAF is Effect Allele Frequency. I find it hard to interpret your sentence: “Large effect betas (0.02-0.03) over 98% EAF are under the p-value line”

    US Blacks are an interesting outlier–far overachieving their genetic score in the graph. I wonder what that means. It is odd that US Blacks on average admixed 80/20 with whites have a genetic score comparable to the African tribes.

    • Replies: @Factorize
  225. CanSpeccy says: • Website

    I just tell you to try to answer point by point of my previous comment

    Well, I don’t subscribe to this:

    I believe human intelligence is unitary in its basis/bottom but become very specialized in the top.

    The unity of mind arises through integration of the activity of neurologically distinct brain modules, each with its own genetic determinants and developmental history. That is evident from neuroanatomy, and also from psychometric data.

    That’s why SAT math and SAT verbal scores are not well correlated, or why the correlations among all testable mental attributes is low, i.e., a mean r squared of less than 0.1.

    Such correlations as exist, and which give rise to the g factor are attributable almost certainly to basic physiological factors such as cardiovascular health (which determines brain oxygen and glucose supply), and other such features of organismal physiology, without a specific relationship to cognition.

    • Replies: @Santoculto
    , @RaceRealist88
  226. CanSpeccy says: • Website
    @Wizard of Oz

    From your Hungarian grandmother?

    LOL. I happen to be about the only Canadian without a Hungarian grandmother. No, I got it with a ten-second Google search. But it’s quite good, I thought.

  227. CanSpeccy says: • Website
    @Wizard of Oz

    But I think you miss the point that it is not being a good soccer player or brilliant pianist that causes people to attribute high intelligence but rather, in complete contrast, the ability to quickly make sense of the unfamiliar**. Speed and a good working memory are of the essence.

    LOL. I just go by the dictionary, Websters and Oxford, both confirm my position. IQists can measure what they like, but they are misleading the world by calling some specific faculty of mind “intelligence,” when it bears little relationship with the common usage of the term.

    it is speed of processing and the finding of the obscure answer to the surprise question that will count at least as much.

    What do you really know about “speed of processing.”

    Listen to this. What key’s it in? Any musician, even if they’d never heard it before, would tell you in a flash*. Play him a 6-note chord in C flat major and gamma-minus moron Derek Parvicini will not only give you the key, he’ll hit all six notes on the piano without hesitation.

    Lawyers train to give the quick, the surprising, the learned answer to a difficult question. And indeed you acknowledge that that skill is the result of long training as well as thorough preparation in any particular exercise of the skill. Likewise, musicians train to do the things they do (and fast).

    If you think lawyers are so smart, try blindfolding one and asking him to instantaneously identify and play a 6-note chord. Then you’ll understand that what you call “speed of processing” in any domain is mainly an acquired characteristic, not an important nervous system variable.
    ———
    *D Major, obviously.

    • Replies: @Wizard of Oz
  228. Factorize says:
    @res

    Sorry, res. Too excited to write clearly.

    Yes, this is true about EA only being an OKish proxy, though it is not that bad. We at least are now the right ball park.

    And you are also right that adding in all the SNPs (almost 10,000) really is not overly helpful. Probably best to stick with the first 3,000. Yet, I was disappointed that so many of the big ones were then lost.

    I have the SNPs in a spread sheet and I am just messing around with them. With “98% with 0.02-0.03 under the p-value line”, I wanted to see where the line was to detect genome-wide significant SNPs ordered by frequency. The line seems to be around the 2% population frequency tails (below 2% and above 98%) for the 0.02 to 0.03 SNPs.

    The SNPs with the largest effect sizes were almost all not genome wide significant. As I noted only 5 of the top 100 largest positive SNPs were significant. This would be such a great opportunity to call in other populations (Asia?). Not sure what the ethnic composition of the current sample was, though I guess European.

    Yes, I noticed that too about the outliers from the regression. This could show how large environmental effects truly can be. If they could prove that such large effects are possible, then it would take quite a bit of the edge off the whole idea of genetic determinism. I would think that developed nations should make it a priority to be positive outliers on the regression.

    Sri Lanka is a large negative outlier (about 1 SD). If I were them, I would get on this research and find how they can move to their potential. 1 SD is large. It could have a substantial impact on their per capita GDP.

    • Replies: @res
  229. Factorize says:

    [For some reason, you seem to add a carriage return after every sentence, which requires fixing to avoid having your comments look terrible. Since you mostly rant-and-rave about nonsense like IQ=1500, please stop doing that if you want them published in the future.]

    I think we need a thread roll call on this one. All those in favor of a new blog post for this new result say Aye.

    Aye. I say the Ayes have it.

    This is a tremendously important result. We have been waiting for this one for eight months and here it is! I am not sure how much longer people will be able to bluff anymore. There WILL be substantial sociopolitical disruption over the medium term due to this technology. We do not have all the background info from the article, though I wonder if we have reached the point now where embryon selection for enhancement of IQ is truly feasible.

    • Replies: @utu
    , @Factorize
  230. utu says:
    @res

    The starting point of this unnecessary excursion was the gap between twin based heritability and GWAS and Hsu’s variance explained. The gap for height is still 80% vs. 40%. Can rare variants (<1%) that presumably were not in Hsu's database close the gap or are critics like Richardson correct that twin based heritability is flawed? I can see that by adding more SNPs and adding nonlinearity to polygenic score the predictor function will get better but at the same time I can see that twin based heritability is overestimated. I think this overestimation is more severe in the case of whatever stands for intelligence than height. So far we have Hsu's 9% for educational attainment and 7% from GWAS studies like in the paper discussed here. And the possibility that stratification may have something to do with these results may not be easily excluded. Actually I do not know how to go about dealing with stratification. Perhaps by using a subset of population where parent's income does not correlate with children educational attainment. If a predictor function on such a subset works worse than on the whole set then it may be an indication of stratification in the data set.

  231. res says:
    @Factorize

    The SNPs with the largest effect sizes were almost all not genome wide significant.

    Probably worth checking if those SNPs are low frequency deleterious variants. There probably are some real effects there, but the frequencies are too low to give a good signal. Who knows how accurate the coefficient estimates might be though. Probably getting a lot of noise in those. High frequency large effect deleterious variants seem much less likely due to selection (though potentially most valuable for improving population IQ if any do exist).

    It would be interesting to do some analysis of coefficients and frequencies. That’s a pretty common thing to plot, but I don’t know if anybody did it for this dataset.

    I wonder if calculating which variants have the largest population effect (effect size scaled by frequency) would tell us anything interesting. I’m curious how well that would correspond to p values. I’m somewhat busy today, but should really spend some time playing with the data in that spreadsheet.

    • Replies: @Factorize
  232. @CanSpeccy

    I’m nor sure that “speed of processimg” is the precisely correct technical term but I recall reading of high positive correlations found years ago between reaction times and IQ scores. Just from memory I can recall – as surely you can – tests at school which showed just how much faster some children’s brains dealt with material that all were equally practised at than others’. And, as one who had access once to the IQ records of a school I can assure you the correlation between IQ and e.g. arithmetical speed and accuracy tests or who put their hand up first to offer a translation of a Latin text was very high. So I say that there can be no doubt “speed of processing” by whatever name is indeed “an important nervous system variable”. Indeed, on reflection I wonder how you could deny it without being an anti science lefty PV troglodyte which you do not appear to be.

    • Replies: @CanSpeccy
  233. utu says:
    @Factorize

    One way to sober up is to generate 20 or so (how many countries you have?) random numbers and then searching database for say 100 SNPs that produce polygenic scores that have the highest correlation with these numbers. Davide Piffer actually did it, sadly to no avail, and found SNPs that explained his data set better than SNPs he selected based on some inside knowledge. Among 10 millions of SNPs one can find subsets that can explain any not excessively long random numbers sequence.

  234. CanSpeccy says: • Website
    @Wizard of Oz

    I can assure you the correlation between IQ and e.g. arithmetical speed and accuracy tests or who put their hand up first to offer a translation of a Latin text was very high. So I say that there can be no doubt “speed of processing” by whatever name is indeed “an important nervous system variable”. Indeed, on reflection I wonder how you could deny it without being an anti science lefty PV troglodyte which you do not appear to be.

    IQ measures, mainly, verbal reasoning and mathematical reasoning ability. So of course it correlates with academic achievement in those subjects. More generally, achieved ability in math and languages is going to correlate with other aspects of academic performance, if only because it indicates motivation to achieve academic excellence, excellence that is in every test that school has to offer. You must know people like that, driven to compete. Others strive to drive holes in one, like Moe Norman, or run miles under four minutes, or get a lot of money, or whatever.

    As I’ve acknowledged above, IQ tests correlate with academic performance. But academics are really only a small part of life. My big sister, who had to repeat a year at the grammar school, became a fine concert pianist, my other sister, who has something like an eidetic memory and won a big scholarship to university, never accomplished much of anything, though she undoubtedly has excellent logic circuits and what you might describe as a quick mind.

    In general, I think Winston Churchill was correct in saying that genius is one percent inspiration, 99 percent perspiration. Churchill, who flunked everything but English in school, and remained in the lowest form at Harrow for three years, worked endlessly at the construction of the plain English sentence and brought its use to the point of genius, despite an IQ that is probably too low to measure.

    And if by processing speed you refer to some aspect of neural activity, where’s the evidence? Action potentials in myelinated axons travel at up to 100 m sec-1. I doubt if they travel at a very different speed in my brain or yours than in Derek Paravicini’s brain. In fact, if speed of nervous conduction had anything to do with intelligence, I’d guess it might be faster in Derek’s brain than the brain of most, since he is surely a keyboard genius.

  235. CanSpeccy says: • Website
    @CanSpeccy

    oops, the “despite an IQ too low to measure, was supposed to refer to Derek Paravicini, not Winston Churchill, who despite being an academic failure, was not a moron in any way.

  236. Factorize says:
    @Factorize

    [Once again: stop putting carriage returns at the end of every sentence if you want your comments published.]

    Sorry, not sure what is causing that.
    Whose text is in bold?

    • Replies: @Factorize
  237. @CanSpeccy

    But language and mathematics are the cultural and cognitive basis of human intelligence.

    • Replies: @CanSpeccy
  238. @CanSpeccy

    Without 1% of inspiration no have 99% of perspiration or transpiration.. Think about it.

  239. res says:
    @CanSpeccy

    In general, I think Winston Churchill was correct in saying that genius is one percent inspiration, 99 percent perspiration.

    Edison, not Churchill: http://www.quotationspage.com/quote/2054.html

    • Replies: @CanSpeccy
  240. @CanSpeccy

    determines brain oxygen and glucose supply), and other such features of organismal physiology, without a specific relationship to cognition.

    I don’t think so.

    • Replies: @CanSpeccy
  241. CanSpeccy says: • Website
    @Santoculto

    But language and mathematics are the cultural and cognitive basis of human intelligence.

    No. They are components of human intelligence. There are many other both cultural and cognitive elements of human intelligence. You have to watch out or you’ll find yourself squarely in the IQist camp.

    • Replies: @Santoculto
  242. CanSpeccy says: • Website
    @Santoculto

    I don’t think so.

    May be you’re suffering a brain oxygen deficit.

    • Replies: @Santoculto
    , @CanSpeccy
  243. @CanSpeccy

    I think you’re too much against IQ and become a opposite of IQist in the sense you deny most of IQ stuff but not in essence, in the sense you are too radical and less balanced/less wiser [as a typical IQ-fetishist] to approach this matter without be out of reasonableness, i mean, always required one.

    No. They are components of human intelligence. There are many other both cultural and cognitive elements of human intelligence.

    I never deny this. And not, they are not JUST ANOTHER components of human intelligence, it was what you mean.

  244. @CanSpeccy

    Maybe.
    Maybe you no have more arguments..

    So it’s matter too*

  245. Factorize says:
    @Factorize

    [You are NOT supposed to press Return!!]

    What am I doing wrong?
    I write a sentence and then I press return.
    How could that be my fault and not the forum’s software?

    • Replies: @res
  246. CanSpeccy says: • Website
    @CanSpeccy

    Or to be more explicit, how could cardiovascular function not be a component of general intelligence when the brain is by far the most energy intensive organ.

    In the case of cardiovascular disease one can see the effect on mental function. I recall, in particular, a man of around 60 who was both slow of speech and dull of mind: apparently a case of early onset dementia. But after aortic valve replacement surgery and a long recovery period, he regained normal speech and the full mental vigor of a man of middle-age.

    Other general physiological factors affecting intelligence are not difficult to envisage.

  247. Okechukwu says:
    @EH

    Your wild assertions run contrary to all the research, of which you are entirely and deliberately ignorant. Your foolish posts are a waste of time even to read, so arguing with their maliciously ignorant author would be even more so.

    This is not a rebuttal. Even in high school you should have learned how to critique a document. You get a big fat F.

    Once again, another IQist proves to be a complete idiot.

    • Replies: @res
  248. @Wizard of Oz

    Sorry, correlation of 0.265 so rather low, but still useful.

    • Replies: @Wizard of Oz
  249. @Wizard of Oz

    Sorry, correlation of 0.265 so rather low, but still useful.

  250. res says:
    @Factorize

    The bold text is typically the moderator. In this case presumably Dr. Thompson (though I am not sure about that).

    Notice how in comment 253 there are carriage returns after each sentence (they were not removed in that comment). In long comments having those returns makes it harder to read. Best not to use the carriage returns like that. I often go to considerable trouble to remove extra carriage returns from text I cut and paste from papers for the same reason.

  251. res says:
    @Okechukwu

    Even if EH’s comment does not contain a proper argument, it at least has the virtue of being correct. Your comment on the other hand has neither.

    • Troll: Okechukwu
    • Replies: @RaceRealist88
  252. Factorize says:
    @res

    res, I am trying to be careful with these extra carriage returns. I am also not sure of the identity of the bolder either. The tone of the initial rebuttal surprised me. Can there be any doubt that a substantial shift in human IQ is now on the horizon? Probably should be more ranting and raving than there is. I am doing my part to fill in this gap. Is it not totally clear to everyone that we are rapidly approaching a Singularity? It is almost pointless to even debate this anymore. We are truly staring ahead at this social chasm. Sure, it might not be 1500 IQ people, though it does not
    need to be anywhere near that for massive social disruption. So many of the unz threads go on endlessly about a few IQ point differences between groups of people. The differences that we now have on the table are no longer a few points.

    You noted, 40 IQ points –> ~1 PGS score. So 1 “SD” = 40 IQ points. As a guess, it is simply a scaling question. The true scale on the y-axis should have a range of 3 when all the SNPs are found, but they have only found a third of this so far.

    Below is the list of the 5 most positive and 5 most negative SNPs. You were right. The ones that were negative were almost all rare, while the positives were mostly common. It was striking, though, that so many of the large absolute betas were not genome significant. Look at the big positive ones below: 0.995, 0.997, 0.997. These SNPs are going to fixation and yet have not quite made it. It will likely be very helpful to call in other populations to help resolve some of these. As I said above, this size GWAS has the power to detect genome significant SNPs around 2-5% tails with absolute betas of 0.02 or greater.

    MarkerName CHR POS A1 A2 EAF Beta SE Pval
    rs137861526 13 63818382 T C 0.005102 0.1 0.024 2.38E-05
    rs6995160 8 58608236 A G 0.003401 0.088 0.02 1.67E-05
    rs185897402 2 153507714 A G 0.994898 0.079 0.018 8.29E-06
    rs146409194 7 66040951 A T 0.996599 0.078 0.018 1.17E-05
    rs117899362 12 49937297 T C 0.996599 0.073 0.016 9.75E-06
    rs190490932 6 27236857 T C 0.996599 -0.074 0.017 9.23E-06
    rs77414068 1 96274765 A G 0.003401 -0.075 0.017 1.57E-05
    rs188424966 7 106564157 T C 0.001701 -0.076 0.018 3.83E-05
    rs4684749 3 10996283 T C 0.005102 -0.08 0.02 4.15E-05
    rs190410522 2 58389547 T C 0.001701 -0.099 0.022 6.66E-06

    I was able to write a program that extracts the genotypes from my genochip results for over 500 of the 3000 SNPs. I have written another program that uses proxies to see how many more of the SNPs I can account for. The one thing I am not sure about now is which of the SNPs is the effect allele. Look up the first two SNPs in the table above on dbsnp. The effect allele shifts back and forth! Would it really be required to look up the frequencies in dbsnp? That would make things quite a bit more complicated for my program. Couldn’t they have used a simple rule, such as A1 is the allele associated with the beta?

    • Replies: @Santoculto
    , @res
  253. @James Thompson

    Indeed, .265 is approx the square root of 0.07. I’ve always had a bit of trouble getting my mind round variance as the proportion of something explained by whatever.

    If one is being told here that 7 per cent of the difference between the measured IQs of two test subjects is, on average, explained by what is known about (quantities associated with) certain specified genes that seems to be very little, especially given the probability that genes of major effect would be discovered first. Moreover the great lump of genes and other causal elements which explains the other 93 per cent might hypothetically have effects which are both positive and negative, all over the place indeed.

    • Replies: @James Thompson
  254. CanSpeccy says: • Website
    @CanSpeccy

    To be even more explicit, what I am saying is this:

    (a) The brain is both structurally modular — as the neuroanatomy shows, and functionally modular — as the neurophysiology shows.

    (b) Every brain module has its own genetic determinants and its own developmental history, the latter subject to environmental effects which are generally of great importance, for example, input from the optic nerve during development of the mammalian visual cortex is essential to the acquisition of vision.

    (c) Given the genetic and developmental independence of the modules comprising the brain, one would not expect, and does not observe, close within-population correlations among measured cognitive capacities.

    (d) Despite the genetic and developmental independence of the functional components of the brain, all depend on the same cellular constituents — mitochondria, membrane lipids, pumps, channels, protein kinases, the machinery of energy and intermediary metabolism, and much else beside.

    (e) Variation in this cellular substrate of neurological activity means that there will be common factors affecting the functionality of all components of the brain. This is what gives rise, in part, to the modest, ca 10%, population-wide regression coefficient among cognitive capacities, i.e., the g factor. In addition, there is an environmental component to g, including nutrition, education, and much else beside.

    (f) Intelligence, being multi-faceted, cannot be measured with a uni-dimensional scale. Moreover, variation in relative capacity in different cognitive dimensions will be heavily influenced by cultural and other environmental factors, hence, the Flynn Effect.

    (g) Notwithstanding (f), uni-dimensional measures of cognitive capacity in limited domains may have power to predict such things as academic achievement, or career prospects. This is not surprising since (1) career success/income tends to be reflective of verbal or mathematical reasoning capacity, and (2) education focuses on the development of verbal and mathematical reasoning capacity, and (3) so-called IQ tests (therefore) focus on verbal and mathematical reasoning capacity. Such tests are not, however, necessarily useful in predicting success in many other domains, for example, athletics, the arts, and entertainment, or indeed in predicting mere survival in contexts other than a developed economy.

    • Replies: @Santoculto
    , @res
  255. @Factorize

    Do you believe IQ 70 today is always related with mental retardation?? I mean, pre historical humans were “retarded”??

  256. @CanSpeccy

    A lot of wild conjectures about “education”. We still don’t know, we don’t have any proven imprescindibility of “education” to increase human intelligence. In the end of day we already live at least in developed countries a educational system which is considerably equitable and the results don’t change only with demographic changes via migrations. Even in countries as Brazil we already have a relatively equitable educational system. But almost things school “teach’ is how to memorize a lot of abstract information, or, to try to memorize.

    Your last paragraph many people here already know. Are you suggesting almost people don’t know about this?

    But… In arts at least specially in literature verbal ability/ies tend to be hugely required and in visual arts non-verbal abilities also are very required at least in non-pseudo-talent, and visual spatial abilities IQ tend to be good to measure and predict. Again you are too far from reasonableness when you starts to deny even the basic facts about IQ. While I’m with you against IQ fetishism I’m against you when you act just like Socjusticeworriors or a useful “idiot’.

    In entertainment at least to be a host in “very important’ tv show you just need have verbal agility + psychological factors as charisma. But I’m not saying this cognitive factors (IQ is good to measure, I said GOOD) are extremely important because we have a lot of uncharismatic, shy or whatever non-socially skilled people who score higher in verbal abilities, I mean, mechanicist verbal abilities (mechanicist or cognitive). It’s always mostly a combination of, specially, intrinsic factors which predict given potential and not just OR fundamentally IQ, what most IQist believe. Of course I’m talking about potential prediction but not subjective or not soo subjective factors as luck to explain most of very famous host tv show. Even to be humorist many components of verbal mecanicist cognition (something IQ measure) are required. IQ analyze the ingredients and not the recipe.

    We need start from something and IQ has been good for this function, to start.

    Mathematical, verbal and spatial seems very multifaceted even because as you know verbal and maths already tend to have their mutual modular tilts.

  257. @Wizard of Oz

    There is an argument that we should not get too hung up about variance explained, but consider the correlation coefficient itself as an indicator of the slope, which is the power of the explanation. I am slowly coming round to that position. So, if you say (with great simplification) that 0.265 is the slope, then it is useful

    • Replies: @Wizard of Oz
  258. res says:
    @Factorize

    I am not sure of the exact provenance of that spreadsheet (can anyone elaborate?). In the Infoproc comment nooffesnsebut states: “here are the graphs of average polygenic scores for the recently leaked SSGAC education attainment SNPs” and “the correlation from Lee et al, using 2985 SNPs, is 0.90″ which leads me to believe they are looking at a still unpublished study from James Lee et al. using the SSGAC data. Probably an iteration of the work in this talk: http://programme.exordo.com/bga17/delegates/presentation/214/

    Which I think is an iteration of https://www.nature.com/articles/nature17671
    The figure below indicates that study used SD units for the effect sizes and gives an idea of the effect size magnitudes seen in that earlier study.

    The big problem I see with the SNPs in the recent spreadsheet is that they don’t distinguish independent SNPs (as defined by LD). The first five SNPs (smallest p values) provide a good example:

    MarkerName CHR POS A1 A2 EAF Beta SE Pval
    rs9859556 3 49455986 T G 0.6905 0.029 0.001 3.98E-91
    rs7623659 3 49414791 T C 0.3095 0.029 0.001 5.49E-91
    rs11917431 3 49644012 T C 0.6973 0.029 0.001 6.86E-91
    rs1873625 3 49666964 A C 0.6973 0.029 0.001 7.52E-91
    rs11921590 3 49644193 T C 0.6973 -0.029 0.001 1.12E-90

    Those all look like essentially the same thing (especially the third and fifth which are only 180 nucleotides apart, note that the graphic above does account for independent SNPs per the linked letter). I don’t know how they computed betas and/or a prediction function,

    One thing I do not understand is how the third and fifth SNPs (rs11917431 and rs11921590) have the same frequency (EAF) but opposite signed betas. That leads me to believe there is not a simple mapping between effect allele and A1 or A2, but it would be good to hear from someone who knows for sure.

    At this point I don’t think I understand the data well enough to work with it effectively.

    It might be interesting to compare the SNP lists in http://www.nature.com/mp/journal/v21/n6/extref/mp201645x4.xls

    P.S. I think there are a number of problems with talking about 1500 IQ humans.
    - “IQs” that high aren’t really meaningful (well defined) since they are defined by frequency (deviation IQ) and the population is too small. Rasch scores aren’t much better. It’s just not possible to norm an indirect measure like IQ so far into a range where no one exists.
    - It is unlikely the linear extrapolation works out that far. For example, there are physical limits on nerve conduction velocity.
    - I think envisioning a world where John von Neumann is average and there are people 4SD smarter than him (which I do think is achievable) is sufficiently challenging.
    - Sensationalist speculation like that can make IQ research look less serious. Perhaps it was good for getting attention, but not a good angle to focus on longer term to be taken seriously IMHO.
    It does make a great headline for those who like sensationalism though.

  259. res says:
    @CanSpeccy

    Thanks for laying that out in detail. I think this one is problematic. Especially given the research available which I think indicates those correlations aren’t all that small.

    (c) Given the genetic and developmental independence of the modules comprising the brain, one would not expect, and does not observe, close within-population correlations among measured cognitive capacities.

    For an analogy, consider the quality of buildings within a city. There will be variation among the buildings, but also substantial correlation based on the typical quality of concrete, steel, laborers, etc. available in that city. I find it quite plausible that various aspects of intelligence all correlate with drivers of good metabolic functioning (e.g. myelin production).

  260. @CanSpeccy

    Please reconsider your description of the cardiovascular function as a “component” of general intelligence. One might as well say that lung and digestive functions are also components. Reasoning is a (very big) component of intelligence and a good case can be made for saying that intuition is. But physical preconditions for the functioning of intelligence are a different kind of thing – not components. I think it matters to your argument.

    • Replies: @res
  261. @James Thompson

    What kind of prediction does it allow us to make?

    • Replies: @James Thompson
  262. res says:
    @Wizard of Oz

    I think CanSpeccy’s original point was sound. I see your point more as a philosophical observation about how to define “component.” As an example, I think a persistent intense headache can impair intelligence. Being headache free is IMHO important to intellectual functioning. But for that case I agree calling it a “component” would be inappropriate. I think the cardiovascular system is intermediate. It would be interesting to see how measurements of CV functionality (perhaps stroke volume normalized by body size?) correlate with IQ.

    Put another way, being important for the functioning of intelligence and being part of a concept (say measurement or definition) of intelligence are arguably both “components” of intelligence. But they are clearly different and being clear about which is intended is helpful. This sort of multiple definitions become less useful when people use them to conclude “intelligence” is not a meaningful concept.

  263. @Wizard of Oz

    Well, assume that we standardize both the genetic data (average number of intelligence SNPs) and the psychometric data (average intelligence). In that case the correlation coefficient is equal to the regression slope. Because it is low, your predictions of intelligence using genetic data will be poor, and liable to error, but better than pure guesswork.

    • Replies: @Wizard of Oz
    , @utu
  264. @James Thompson

    Yhanks. So when we compare that low predictability with the high estimates of heritability (whether 40 or 80 per cent or in between) it would appear to follow that we should expect to find many times the so far known IQ related SNPs, alleles or whatever, plus perhaps many relevant interesting epigenetic phenomena…….

  265. utu says:
    @James Thompson

    There are several reasons why r-square is preferable to r when talking about goodness of fit instead of correlation r. The most important one is that variances are additive and thus the total variance of data is the sum of explained and unexplained variances. So if r^2=0.5 then 50% of variance is explained and 50% of variance remains unexplained. There is no law prohibiting statements like this: correlation=sqrt(0.5)=0.707 implies that 70.7% of standard deviation is explained. This statement may boost the mood of the modeler nut it misleads because it obscures the fact the unexplained standard deviation is not 29.3% but also 70.7%. Explained and unexplained standard deviations do not add up to 100%.

    While it is true that slope=correlation when Y and X data are normalized to the same variance, I do not think that outside some narrow circles anybody would recognize that slope is a measure of a goodness of fit. It is rather correlation and its square that every student of statistics will recognize as measures of goodness of fit somehow linked to residuals from the fit.

    There is however a case where a slope is directly related to variance explained. The slope in breeders equation is equal to lower case heritability h2 which in turn is related to some variance explained (by genes). BTW, while I have seen a proof that ∆Z<S and thus there is a coefficient k<1 that ∆Z=k*S but I haven't seen a rigorous proof that this coefficient k actually equals to lower case heritability h2.

  266. CanSpeccy says: • Website

    Thanks for your comment.

    Re: “those correlations aren’t all that small”

    Looking at this correlation matrix the average correlation coefficient appears to be around 0.3, giving a mean r squared of less than 10%. is that data set so atypical?

    Re: “I find it quite plausible that various aspects of intelligence all correlate with drivers of good metabolic functioning”

    If the cellular substrate of neurological activity, whether functioning well or badly, is perfectly uniform within the population then it seems to me that g might well be zero. If not, then g would have to be attributed to correlated within population variation in the functional effectiveness (as measured by IQ-type tests) of different brain modules. To some extent this can be expected, for example, as a result of assortative mating. However, correlations among intellectual capabilities are not that good, e.g., between SAT math and SAT verbal, for example (as exemplified by a niece that the Wizard mentioned, who as I recall was a verbal wiz and a math clutz — relatively, anyway).

    I wonder, incidentally, whether that is not common in girls (I know there are first rate female mathematicians) but in the mating stakes verbal reasoning likely counts for more than math (cf. Jane Austin – Pride and Prejudice).

    A further complication is the reassignment of neurological resources among brain functions, for example, the reassignment of the visual cortex to non visual functions in the blind. Such reassignment may perhaps also occur as consequence of intensive use of particular faculties. In that case ability is raised by use: at the expense of loss of capability of less intensively used faculties.

    That use, practice, training, etc., increases intellectual capacity seems almost certain in view of the Flynn Effect, and means that correlation among facets of intelligence will never be perfect.

    • Replies: @res
  267. res says:
    @CanSpeccy

    Re: “those correlations aren’t all that small”

    Looking at this correlation matrix the average correlation coefficient appears to be around 0.3, giving a mean r squared of less than 10%. is that data set so atypical?

    I guess the question is “atypical compared to what?”

    The Woodcock-Johnson battery you linked to seems to test a variety of things. Check out the intercorrelations for test #11 sound blending for example. There are some subgroups of the tests which have higher correlations. For example, look at the correlations for #13 Oral Vocabulary with tests 20-28.

    This paper gives somewhat higher intercorrlations for the WAIS subtests (Table 1): https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0887617797000152
    Overall they advocate a 2 or 3 factor solution, but AFAICT did not give quantitative info to judge how necessary that was. They mention tests used, but don’t give the actual data. How hard would it have been to include a scree plot to let readers judge for themselves?

    Overall I think the correlations of the individual tests with g is a better measure of g’s significance than the test intercorrelations.

    However, correlations among intellectual capabilities are not that good, e.g., between SAT math and SAT verbal, for example (as exemplified by a niece that the Wizard mentioned, who as I recall was a verbal wiz and a math clutz — relatively, anyway).

    Table 4 (page 18, 23/26 of the PDF) of https://www.ets.org/Media/Research/pdf/RR-99-02-Dorans.pdf
    gives the SAT math/verbal correlation as 0.71 which seems quite high to me (just over 50% of variance explained). Especially when considering the correlation between the SAT Verbal and ACT English or Reading is 0.83 (i.e. not that much more).

    I think much of the clutz/wiz dichotomy people observe comes from two effects:
    1. Tendency to specialize. This both results in a practice effect and means in most fields asymmetric skill profiles are common and people spend the most time with others in their field.
    2. Restriction of range and selection effects. For example, people tend to be admitted to college by some measure of overall ability (e.g. combined SAT). Think about two colleges with admission thresholds of 1400 and 1500 SAT. If everyone goes to the best college they can then the first college has a group of 1400-1500 scorers. The people who did best at both will end up at the second college leaving the first with a larger proportion of unbalanced scorers. This is most easily visualized with a scatterplot of the two correlated 0.71 variables with the thresholds overlaid.

    • Replies: @CanSpeccy
  268. CanSpeccy says: • Website
    @res

    There are some subgroups of the tests which have higher correlations. For example, look at the correlations for #13 Oral Vocabulary with tests 20-28.

    Yes, they include “Oral vocabulary,” “listening comprehension,” and “verbal analogies.” Almost certainly a lot of overlap there in terms of the underlying neurological processing. What that suggests is that the tests are not well designed to correspond with the function of particular neurological structures.

    This is a problem, even with such seemingly distinct areas as math and verbal, since math questions and concepts generally have a verbal component. Has anyone, I wonder, done brain imaging of students taking IQ tests. It could be revealing, not that I recommend using kids as guinea pigs. The value of such information would be to design better tests, i.e., tests that measure the performance of distinct, as opposed to overlapping, brain areas.

    And, as noted earlier, assortative mating must account, in part, for correlation between SAT math and SAT verbal, especially at the top end of the socioeconomic pile (and it is only kids from near the top of the pile who take the College Board SAT tests). In other words, smart people marry other smart people, attracted by the money if not the brains, and you cannot be really smart unless you can use both words and numbers with skill. My prediction, therefore, is that the math:verbal correlation will decline from the top down, to the midway point. Beyond that, with deepening dimness, math and verbal scores might be expected to converge again.

    See, recognition that intelligence is not a unitary phenomenon provides a whole new way of looking at psychometrics. The goal should be not convergence of sub-test results but divergence. Then one could obtain a useful cognitive profile, not a virtually meaningless, so-called IQ.

    • Replies: @res
    , @James Thompson
  269. res says:
    @CanSpeccy

    and it is only kids from near the top of the pile who take the College Board SAT tests

    That depends on how narrow/broad your definition of “near the top” is. Based on the NYT graphic below about 1.67 million students took the SAT in 2012. A similar number took the ACT. Eyeballing Figure 2. in https://www.census.gov/prod/cen2010/briefs/c2010br-03.pdf we can estimate about 4.3 million American 15 year olds in 2010.

    Those numbers give a range for those taking either the SAT or ACT of 39%-78%. I believe this does ignore foreign students taking the tests. I am not sure how multiple attempts are accounted for.

    I don’t know how those numbers accord with your idea of “near the top.”

    From another perspective, this statistic surprised me: https://edsource.org/2014/evaluation-shows-number-of-students-not-taking-sat-act-or-ap/63320

    No students are taking SAT, ACT or Advanced Placement exams in 14 percent of California’s high schools

    Related: https://www.npr.org/sections/ed/2015/10/07/446322589/surprisingly-few-urban-high-school-students-take-the-act-or-sat

    For teenagers headed to a four-year college, taking a standardized entrance exam such as the ACT and SAT is typically a requirement. But it’s far from a universal experience.

    In 50 of the largest U.S. cities, examined in a new report from the University of Washington, Bothell’s nonpartisan Center on Reinventing Public Education, fewer than 1 in 3 students takes either of those tests in a given year.

    The rate of taking the SAT or ACT in those cities topped out in Memphis, at just 30 percent. In three-fifths of the cities, it was less than half that.

    SAT and ACT test takers by year:

    [MORE]

  270. @CanSpeccy

    Richard Haier and Rex Jung have real time scans of adults trying to solve Raven’s Matrices tests. I have the video, and they are fascinating, like watching traffic in speeded up time, or a dance of instantaneous sub-routines swopping partial results.

    • Replies: @CanSpeccy
  271. CanSpeccy says: • Website
    @James Thompson

    Yes, study of the anatomical and physiological correlates of mental activity is surely the way forward.

    I was unable to get access to the full text of the Haier and Jung paper, but there’s no end of related stuff of great interest.

    For example this paper indicating a relationship between cerebral blood flow and creativity, which is consistent with Newton’s account of his discoveries which entailed “keeping the question constantly before the mind until, little by little, it opened up.”

    This effect, which should perhaps be called the “Newton creativity factor,” may explain the apparent independence of IQ and creativity. Indeed, have you not noticed how some people of the highest academic aptitude, and therefore presumably of high IQ, can seem stumped when it comes to entertaining a hypothesis, indicating that the Newtonian thought process is quite alien to them, whereas to someone such as Richard Feynman, a man of reputedly modest IQ, a brainfull of hypotheses was the normal state of mind.

    And here it is asserted that artistic and scientific creativity are attributable to activity in different brain regions, which comes as no surprise to the scientific brain baffled by the phenomenon of modern “art.”

    Such studies reveal great potential for the quantification of mental capacity, and the observation of mental development and the impacts on mental development of culture, education, nutrition, etc.

  272. A new paper on educational attainment and genetic differences across private/state school student cohorts in Britain:

    https://www.nature.com/articles/s41539-018-0019-8

    • Replies: @CanSpeccy
  273. CanSpeccy says: • Website
    @Peter Johnson

    Given the multi-racial character of Britain’ school-age population, is it not possible — probable even, that the relationship between genome-wide polygenic scores (GPS) and scholastic achievement/aptitude reflect differences in GPS among the highly culturally distinct racial groups comprising Britain’s often poorly integrated immigrant communities? In that case, the GPS may have little or nothing to do with academic aptitude.

    Apparently, no attempt was made to control for racial differences, which one might expect to differentiate among students as well as the genetic markers. To prove otherwise, one would need to show that within, as well as among, racial/cultural groups, GPS reflects scholastic achievement/aptitude.

    • Replies: @Peter Johnson
  274. @CanSpeccy

    GWAS typically removes the first fifteen principal components of the SNP (single nucleotide polymorphisms) correlation matrix. This removes any strong ethnic common features in the SNP’s since they are in the first few principal components. Many studies also rely on the European-only subsample as an additional control. Your comment is theoretically correct, which is why researchers use such extreme corrections to prevent this statistical bias from affecting their results.

    • Replies: @CanSpeccy
  275. res says:

    GWAS typically removes the first fifteen principal components of the SNP (single nucleotide polymorphisms) correlation matrix.

    This is new to me. Can you give a reference describing how this is done exactly?

    In a quick search the closest thing I found was from: https://www.nature.com/articles/mp2017153

    GWAS was performed using PLINK v1.9 (ref. 29) testing for associations between SNPs and alcohol consumption in unrelated individuals with location of UKB assessment centre, genotyping batch and 15 principal components included as covariates

    That sounds different from your statement and actually sounds like a quite direct way to look at group differences if the first PCs correspond to racial groups as they typically do in studies of diverse populations.

    Perhaps I am reading it wrong though and they mean the covariates are corrected for rather than being considered as explanatory variables. If so, it seems to me they would be removing signal more than noise by controlling for the PCs. Though it would help correct for population differences.

    Elsewhere in the paper we see:

    Individuals were removed from the present study based on non-British ancestry (within those who self-identified as being British, principal component analysis was used to remove outliers, n=32 484)

    which seems more in line with your point.

    And also:

    Four principal components were fit as fixed-effect covariates to control for population stratification.

  276. Including the principal components in the regression is statistically more efficient than prewhitening before running the regression. If interested I suggest you look at the Supplementary Information appendix in Okbay et alia’s important article in Nature (2016):

    https://media.nature.com/original/nature-assets/nature/journal/v533/n7604/extref/nature17671-s1.pdf

    • Replies: @res
  277. CanSpeccy says: • Website
    @Peter Johnson

    Peter,

    Thanks for your comment. You say that ” researchers use such extreme corrections to prevent this statistical bias from affecting their results” and that “GWAS typically removes the first fifteen principal components of the SNP (single nucleotide polymorphisms) correlation matrix,” but did the authors of this particular study take such precaution against statistical bias? The description of methods does not, so far as I can see, say that they did.

    As to the general conclusion, namely, that:

    Is it not the case that the claim:

    “… genetic …. differences between school types are primarily due to the heritable characteristics involved in pupil admission” merely a tautology?

    As to the conclusion that independent schools offer no value added, it reminds me of the categorization of private schools by Mr. Levy of the Gargoyle Employment Agency in Evelyn Waugh’s novel Decline and Fall:

    We class schools, you see, into four grades: Leading School, First-rate School, Good School, and School.

    Having myself, in the days of Evelyn Waugh’s prime, attended many different schools, including one “Leading School” one public grammar school, and a couple of mere “Schools,” it seems doubtful to me that this study, which treated all fee-paying schools as a group, could have anything useful to say about the potential educational added value of a private school education.

  278. res says:
    @Peter Johnson

    Thank you! Going through that in detail will take more time than I have this instant, but some quick thoughts.

    Page 4 has this description (equation rewritten due to special characters):

    Cohorts were asked to estimate this regression equation for each measured SNP (we drop the SNP subscript j here to avoid notational clutter):
    (1) EduYears = Beta0 + Beta1 * SNP + PC * Gamma + B * Alpha + X * Theta + epsilon,
    where SNP is the allele dose of the SNP; PC is a vector of the first ten principal components of the variance-covariance matrix of the genotypic data, estimated after the removal of genetic outliers; B is a vector of standardized controls, including a third-order polynomial in age, an indicator for being female, and their interactions; and X is a vector of study-specific controls. Specifically, in X, study analysts were encouraged to include dummy variables for major events such as wars or policy changes that may have affected access to education in their specific sample. Mixed-sex cohorts were additionally asked to upload separate regression results for men and women.

    It would be interesting to see how the PCs they observed corresponded to those seen in studies intentionally looking at variation between populations.

    Am I wrong to infer that this equation could be used to estimate coefficients for the variables being controlled for? Though since the study is not designed for those tests it is unclear how reliable those coefficients would be (the coefficient SDs should give a good clue, right?).

    Page 21 has some discussion of polygenic scores with and without PC adjustment.

    There is more detail on polygenic prediction starting on page 107. There they reference Supplementary Table 5.2 for results.
    The paper itself is at https://www.nature.com/articles/nature17671 along with many supplementary tables in Excel.
    Looking at that table I don’t see any coefficients given for the control variables. The low R^2 values seen leads me to conclude they did not include the control variables in the R^2. Does anyone know for sure if this is the case? If so, it would be very interesting to know what the R^2 was for the baseline model.

    Page 109 has a comparison with Rietveld et al. (2013). Does anyone know if they used the same PC control methodology?

    Okbay et al. reference https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16862161 which I should probably check out for more detail if needed.

    P.S. The detailed contribution breakdown on pp. 125-133 (!) was something.

  279. @CanSpeccy

    There is no point. The brain is a part of the person taking the test, hence the correlations. none have shown to be causal regarding physiological process —-> IQ score.

  280. @res

    Arguments have premises and conclusions. Hence, no argument was made.

  281. @res

    “You really don’t see how that is a false dichotomy and the differences between MZ and DZ twins can be on a continuum from 0-100% on the environmental and genetic influence split?!”

    No false dichotomy exists. The differences between MZ and DZ twins either comes down to genetics (EEA is true) or environment (EEA is false); it can’t be ‘half true/false’ or ‘one-quarter true/ three-quarters false’. It’s either the assumption is false or it isn’t, and the assumption is false.

    http://logosjournal.com/2015/joseph-twin-research/

    “I don’t think it is worth taking Ken Richardson’s work seriously until you explain why his ideas did not cause problems with the Compressed Sensing results for predicting out of sample height from the genomes.”

    Height is not IQ and there are no EEA arguments for height, as utu said. Height and IQ are two different things, despite claims to the contrary by people like Hsu who liken them to be similar.

    • Replies: @res
  282. @utu

    You should email that to him. He responds to emails.

    Doesn’t the h2 estimate assume that g doesn’t interact with e? Like, they work additive independent of each other?

  283. res says:
    @RaceRealist88

    there are no EEA arguments for height

    Really?! Please elaborate on how “environmental influences are shared to the same extent by monozygotic and dizygotic twins” applies for height but not for IQ. While keeping in mind your all or nothing statement:

    No false dichotomy exists. The differences between MZ and DZ twins either comes down to genetics (EEA is true) or environment (EEA is false); it can’t be ‘half true/false’ or ‘one-quarter true/ three-quarters false’. It’s either the assumption is false or it isn’t, and the assumption is false.

    You really aren’t very analytical, are you? Modeling reality is all about what assumptions are “good enough.” The discussion surrounding this quote is useful: https://stats.stackexchange.com/questions/57407/what-is-the-meaning-of-all-models-are-wrong-but-some-are-useful

    It is fascinating (though sometimes also mystifying) to me to see what some people consider compelling arguments.

    BTW, your fetishization of the EEA in this context is a great example of an isolated demand for rigor: http://slatestarcodex.com/2014/08/14/beware-isolated-demands-for-rigor/

    • Replies: @RaceRealist88
  284. @res

    “Please elaborate on how “environmental influences are shared to the same extent by monozygotic and dizygotic twins” applies for height but not for IQ.”

    IQ isn’t a real biological reality. Height is.

    “Modeling reality is all about what assumptions are “good enough.””

    Well these assumptions aren’t ‘good enough’. If the EEA is false then differences between MZ and DZ twins comes down to environment.

    “fetishization of the EEA”

    How is it “fetishization’? It’s either true or false. If it’s false differences between MZ and DZ twins is environmental.

    “essentially all models are wrong but some are useful.”

    The CTM isn’t useful because the EEA is false. Therefore heritability is shared environment and we cannot logically state that genes cause differences between MZ and DZ twins.

    • Replies: @res
  285. res says:
    @RaceRealist88

    IQ isn’t a real biological reality. Height is.

    And what does that have to do with the EEA?

    This is the part where I wonder if you honestly believe the arguments you are making. If so, it does not speak well of you.

    • Replies: @RaceRealist88
  286. @res

    You’re assuming that IQ is a quantitative trait like height but this assertion is not valid. There is no biological basis to ‘IQ’.

    The EEA is false. Therefore so-called heritability is shared environment. No argument you make or attempt to make will make the EEA true. Twin studies are useless as are heritability estimates.

    It’s simple: if the EEA is true then differences between MZ and DZ trait differences come down to genetics. But if the EEA is false then MZ and DZ trait differences comes down to environment. The EEA is false (http://logosjournal.com/2015/joseph-twin-research/) therefore heritability equals shared environment and you cannot logically make genetic inferences from the data.

    • Replies: @res
  287. res says:
    @RaceRealist88

    You’re assuming that IQ is a quantitative trait like height but this assertion is not valid.

    Fascinating. IQ is clearly quantitative. So what definition of trait are you using to attempt to justify your assertion?

    There is no biological basis to ‘IQ’.

    Do you think if you repeat that often enough it will magically become true? Are you saying the brain (rather biological, I would say) has NOTHING to do with IQ? Do you honestly not understand the strength of words like “no” in your usage?

    It’s simple: if the EEA is true then differences between MZ and DZ trait differences come down to genetics. But if the EEA is false then MZ and DZ trait differences comes down to environment.

    Actually (and leaving aside the obvious false dichotomy) the logic does not work that way. If the EEA is false then the twin study method does not give valid results. That does not mean “MZ and DZ trait differences comes down to environment.”

    Even Ken Richardson understands that: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/pdf/10.1348/000709904X24690
    Emphasis mine. Note the impressive string of weasel words (and the contrast to your statement that I quoted).

    Here, we show that the most crucial of these, namely, the equal environments assumption (EEA), may not hold. Consequently, differences in twin correlations might be at least partly explained by treatment effects from parents, teachers, peers, and so on.

    Look, you are obviously not engaging in this topic in a sincere and intellectually rigorous fashion. I don’t know why that is, but that does not really matter. Unless you have something new to bring to this conversation, I think I have said enough.

    • Replies: @RaceRealist88
  288. @res

    “Fascinating. IQ is clearly quantitative. So what definition of trait are you using to attempt to justify your assertion?”

    How is it quantitative? IQ tests test learned skills and knowledge, not ‘intelligence’. IQ tests aren’t construct valid so you can’t logically state that they test ‘intelligence’.

    “Do you think if you repeat that often enough it will magically become true? Are you saying the brain (rather biological, I would say) has NOTHING to do with IQ? Do you honestly not understand the strength of words like “no” in your usage?”

    Yes I understand, I wrote it. Correlations arise because the brain is part of the body taking the IQ test. How do you show the correlations are causal? They’re not.

    “Actually (and leaving aside the obvious false dichotomy) the logic does not work that way. If the EEA is false then the twin study method does not give valid results. That does not mean “MZ and DZ trait differences comes down to environment.””

    How many truth values are there? Can the EEA be ‘kinda true, half false half true’?

    “Even Ken Richardson understands that”

    Similarity of environments cannot be directly measured for myriad reasons, including but not limit to: not knowing trait-relevant environments and similar treatment of MZ twins.

    And I’m not Ken Richardson. I’ll go a step beyond him and say it’s false. Also check the paper I cited above by Joseph et al and see the paper on schizophrenia and the EEA which Richardson coauthored.

    “Look, you are obviously not engaging in this topic in a sincere and intellectually rigorous fashion.”

    Why do you say this? Because I said there’s no biological basis for IQ or that IQ isn’t a quantitative trait like height? That assumption is because heritability increases as age does. But heritability only increases with age due to how the tests are constructed. Change the test, change these outcomes, too. Test construction is a big thing regarding IQ, as well as the non-construct validity of this so-called ‘construct’.

    Let’s say I had a test for ESP. The test is better than chance. But it’s not validated—we’re not sure that the test tests what is purported to test. Does my ESP test test ESP? Now think the same for IQ. IQ tests aren’t construct valid. Can you logically state that it tests ‘intelligence’ and not learned skills and knowledge?

    • Disagree: res
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