The Times Su Doku Championships

Everything about Sudoku that doesn't fit in one of the other sections

Postby lunababy_moonchild » Wed Oct 19, 2005 3:07 pm

9X9 wrote:Luna - re your reference to em's jocularity, me too! Hence, I joined in the fun.

She and I are "old mates" and I've praised her wit hereabouts.

Jolly good.

3,212 (and counting) registered users. It'd be a big party wouldn't it?

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Postby PaulIQ164 » Wed Oct 19, 2005 3:26 pm

In other news, I reckon that on the picture next to the Grand Final Puzzle solution in The Times today, you can clearly see my shoulder.
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Postby Karyobin » Wed Oct 19, 2005 3:53 pm

Oh my God - it's so obvious now you point it out!

Yaaay - I know famous person.
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Postby tso » Wed Oct 19, 2005 6:08 pm

In an effort to stay slightly on-topic, I include an obpuzzle:

This is the smallest possible Sudoku with 3 constraints -- rows, columns and (irregular and disjoint) boxes. I've chosed to rate it BEYOND HUMAN COMPREHENSION. If you find that it is actually easy to solve, you probably guessed or you are using some tactics I find distasteful -- or you are a super-genius. And good looking.

Code: Select all
+---+---+---+
|       |   |
+   +---+---+
| 1 |   | 2 |
+---+---+   +
|   |       |
+---+---+---+


(The slanting up to the right diagonal is one of the boxes. The other two are the two ‘L’ shaped areas.)



9X9 wrote:... "Men are more intelligent". ...

Believe me, I am in no way a sexist but, from decades of personal observation the results of the study do not surprise me.


Uh, you may not be sexist, but that comment is.

Search the net, you'll find plenty of refutations of this study.

The reason only reason this singularly ridiculous study gets so much press is because it is a singular ridiculous study -- one with NO support in the rest of the scientific community. They're responsible for a similar study claiming that Asians have higher IQ than europeans, who in turn have higher IQs than subsaharan blacks. It isn't merely that they are racist and sexist -- their methods, conclusions and even the wording of their claims simply do not stand scientific or even semi-educated layperson scrutiny.

The mainstream press loves to pretend studies like this mean something because they are "controversial". It is not. It's merely titillating.

A few things that the study misses or ignores:
1) IQ test are still gender biased, still created by men who consider themselves "the default". (In a more general sense, if there exists a skill that men are demonstrably superior to women, mental or physical, it is nearly always given greater importance by society and vice versa. Everyone knows that men have greater upper body strength but few know that women have greater endurance. The first woman to swim the Engish Channel broke the men's record time by 2 hours -- women held all the top distance swim records for 60 years. They average female crossing is much faster than the average male crossing, though male's attempts outnumber female's 3 to 1. Sound familiar? Male dominated society gives very little value to these achievements.) This alone could be your 5 points difference.

2) Lower IQ levels were cut out of the averages at some arbitrary point! Men are outnumber women to the same degree at the bottom as the top. Duh, can you say "cooking the books"? This alone could be your 5 points difference.

3) Boys and girls score the same up until the age of 14. Then, once the overwhelmingly sexist society gets its teeth into them, women supposedly fall slightly behind. And yet, they claim that this is congenital -- though it takes 14 years to kick in.

4) The claimed differences are within a single standard deviation, what reasonable researchers would report as "no conclusive evidence".

5) No attempt was made to factor out environmental factors. Women routinely get negative reinforcement for what men get positive reinforcement. This alone could be your 5 points difference.

6) The ridiculously small differences claimed could not logicialy be responsible in any meaningful way for the vast over-representation of men at higher levels of achievement. To deny this is sexism, lack of opportunity, hostile work environments, lack of encouragement is pathetic. This is not merely sexist -- it's innumerate. It's explaining away a marathon victory with a 6 inch headstart. For example, the idea that men are better at chess was exploded by the Polgar family. The father believed that men had no intrinsic advantage in chess over women, but that they performed better because of sexism, environment, opportunity, etc. He taught his three daughters to play. They attained various world class levels. Judit stopped playing against other women long ago as she saw no point in it. Of course, they were considered freaks the "exceptions that prove the rule" whatever that means. If the father taught 1000 girls who were given similar support, there might not be a single man left in the top 10. Men would start claiming that chess wasn't actually a game of logic or intelligence after all, but that it was somehow connected to childbearing.

7) At most levels of school, girls outperform boys. Apparantly, lower IQ is an asset to higher learning.

8) No account was given to factors that influnce men of sub-genius IQs to drop out of the "testing pool", leaving by attrition, higher IQ men to be tested. Men (especially young men) are far more likely to have a wide range of (high paying and/or handed down by daddy) opportunities that are closed to women and may feel compelled to jump if they are not mowing down the competition at the University. (Yes, I'm talking about me.) A large part of they're testing was 24,000 students. This alone could be your 5 points difference. (That's 20 points so far if you're keeping score.)

9) Brain weight has been previously dismissed as being predictive of IQ, though I'm guessing thier brains are teensy. Maybe not just they're brains. Compensate much?


Even if each and every point in thier claim were 100% true -- 40 years of personal observation alone wouldn't be enough to even suspect it! The differences they suggest would be imperceptible outside a scientific study. If you were to tell me that Germans were 2% taller than Italians, simple observation over any length of time would not be enough to form an inkling of an opinion. Can you tell which of two people have a 133 IQ and which as a 138 IQ on sight, factoring out schooling, age, environmental factors, whether the persons in question agree or disagree with your positions, whether they are knowledgable in your areas of expertise, whether they are more likely to brag about they're prowess or downplay it because of sexist societal pressure? What path have you taken that allows you to evenly sample men and women? Men tend to prefer mates of lower (or apparently lower) intelligence -- so straight couples would tend to reinforce the falacy. (Most men marry women several years younger -- simple observation of couples would reinforce the falacy that men are usually older than women.) Hiring practices in the corporate world and the University favor men, and can again create a false impression.

Men and women are not exactly the same, but the diffences are non-linear and imperceptible. To say men have higher IQ's is as meaningful as saying the 2003 Vendage Chardonay is "better" than the 2004 Vendage Chardonay. Only on careful inspection by experts could the twoy even be distinguished -- and then, the experts might split 50/50 on their pick.
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Postby PaulIQ164 » Wed Oct 19, 2005 6:28 pm

tso wrote:In an effort to stay slightly on-topic, I include an obpuzzle:

This is the smallest possible Sudoku with 3 constraints -- rows, columns and (irregular and disjoint) boxes. I've chosed to rate it BEYOND HUMAN COMPREHENSION. If you find that it is actually easy to solve, you probably guessed or you are using some tactics I find distasteful -- or you are a super-genius. And good looking.


That's a lovely puzzle. Though I suspect you're arguing here about something with which nobody disagrees.

3) Boys and girls score the same up until the age of 14. Then, once the overwhelmingly sexist society gets its teeth into them, women supposedly fall slightly behind. And yet, they claim that this is congenital -- though it takes 14 years to kick in.

Ooh, a bit of post hoc ergo propter hoc here, I'd say. And why exactly is it 14 that you mark out as the poin where society 'sets in'? Could it be because that's the age the study mentions? Plus the fairly obvious fact that by your logic, breasts are imposed on women by our overwhelmingly sexist society. How can they be congenital when they take fourteen years to kick in?!

For example, the idea that men are better at chess was exploded by the Polgar family. The father believed that men had no intrinsic advantage in chess over women, but that they performed better because of sexism, environment, opportunity, etc. He taught his three daughters to play. They attained various world class levels. Judit stopped playing against other women long ago as she saw no point in it. Of course, they were considered freaks the "exceptions that prove the rule" whatever that means. If the father taught 1000 girls who were given similar support, there might not be a single man left in the top 10. Men would start claiming that chess wasn't actually a game of logic or intelligence after all, but that it was somehow connected to childbearing.


I just love how you take a single instance to support your point just after pointing the same thing out as a flaw in an argument.

7) At most levels of school, girls outperform boys. Apparantly, lower IQ is an asset to higher learning.

You said yourself the differences don't kick in for 14 years! Of course the differences won't exist at those levels of schooling. Men tend to pull ahead at later levels, just as the people who made the study would presumably predict.

To emphasise, I don't disagree with your point in any way, but some errors in reasoning here need pointing out, in the spirit of intellectual rigour, and all. Feel free to take this as an invitation to pick apart my logic.
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Postby emm » Wed Oct 19, 2005 8:02 pm

Doesn't this illustrate how easy it is to believe the printed word - and there's so much of it about. I must admit I had my doubts about that study (now she says) since I've always been suspicious of IQs - and MENSA - I mean to say - they could've been a little bit subtle. How easy it is to be wise after the event!

Paul - I’m permanently dropping the IQ164, it just gets in the way - I have no intention of criticising your logic, even if it's flawed - I just want to applaud you for standing up to tso every time, regardless of whether you're right or wrong. We need people like you to keep an eye on him - he's too damn convincing and we all know just how easy it is to believe the printed word!
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Postby lunababy_moonchild » Wed Oct 19, 2005 8:29 pm

I think that it's important to offer opposing viewpoints (argue? who me?). I was suspicious of this study when I first heard of it but didn't bother to read more to find anything out about it. It's a bit 'chicken and egg' for me and I'm sure something like this has been done before.

As I mentioned in my previous post, IQ isn't the be all and end all. After all, regardless of gender - since that's what we're talking about here - there is no point in having a high IQ if you're not willing to use it - one reason that I can see/have experienced for this is downright laziness. There are also emotional reasons, such as arrogance, bigotry and emotional immaturity that puts barriers on using a high IQ, in my experience. Not to mention the downright open hostility ("must be great to be brilliant" type comments) that some people, of both genders, get that would prompt hiding their high IQ.

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Postby 9X9 » Wed Oct 19, 2005 8:47 pm

tso - tks for your lengthy post.

I reproduced what I thought were the salient relevant points of what was published in the Mensa Magazine. In my view the reported words of Dr Irwing and Professor Lynn are temperate and free from arrogance and they therefore deserve the courtesy of a similar response from the broader scientific community.

Since they are prepared to publish their work in a reputable journal and since the report uses mild phrases such as eg "claim the differences", "may go some way to explaining", "will argue that there is evidence" and "possibly because", they should be given the chance to consider the criticisms that you say have been, or that may post-publication be, directed at them and to then refute them if they are so able. Then we shall see.

I am sorry that you consider my citing of honest insight, derived from intelligent personal observation over very many years, to be sexist. I see no reason to change what I said and, in deference to other members, now regard this whole matter as closed.
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Postby CathyW » Wed Oct 19, 2005 8:54 pm

lunababy_moonchild wrote:IQ isn't the be all and end all... - there is no point in having a high IQ if you're not willing to use it
Luna


I am with you here Luna - the application of one's intelligence is what I think really matters. Through a former work colleague I have met a number of people with high IQs who had struggled in school because they weren't stretched sufficiently and thus got bored and disruptive.
I might add that many of those with high IQs also seem to have virtually no common sense (though I'm not suggesting that is necessarily always the case!):)

And, although my IQ would qualify me for Mensa, I still managed to mess up today's Fiendish and one of DJApe's killers from last week.
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Postby PaulIQ164 » Wed Oct 19, 2005 9:02 pm

em wrote:Paul - I’m permanently dropping the IQ164, it just gets in the way - I have no intention of criticising your logic, even if it's flawed - I just want to applaud you for standing up to tso every time, regardless of whether you're right or wrong. We need people like you to keep an eye on him - he's too damn convincing and we all know just how easy it is to believe the printed word!


Always important to have a Devil's Advocate. It's also important to remember that just because you would prefer it if something weren't true, doesn't mean that it isn't (or that it is). In a sense, by getting so worked up about the matter, you're playing into the sexist's hands, because it implies that you think that if the differences are true, it would warrant some kind of action be taken. Anyhow, I agree that IQ scores aren't much to go by (despite my username). They don't really have much relevance to anything besides how good you are at doing IQ tests.
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Postby Karyobin » Wed Oct 19, 2005 10:38 pm

tso wrote:"exceptions that prove the rule" whatever that means.


Errrmmm...what that actually means is that the exception is the only true test of the validity or proof of a rule. We could say

The exception proofs the rule.

Just because you asked. Sort of.
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Postby emm » Thu Oct 20, 2005 2:08 am

What about rules that don't have exceptions? How are they proofed?
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exceptions

Postby Pat » Thu Oct 20, 2005 10:02 am

em wrote:What about rules that don't have exceptions? How are they proofed?
who wrote: Every rule has an exception,
including this rule.


- Pat
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IQ mis-testing: "The Mismeasure of Man"

Postby Pat » Thu Oct 20, 2005 10:02 am

an important book on IQ mis-testing:

Stephen Jay Gould wrote:The Mismeasure of Man
- Pat
Last edited by Pat on Tue Nov 22, 2005 1:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby tso » Thu Oct 20, 2005 1:57 pm

Karyobin wrote:
tso wrote:"exceptions that prove the rule" whatever that means.


Errrmmm...what that actually means is that the exception is the only true test of the validity or proof of a rule. We could say

The exception proofs the rule.

Just because you asked. Sort of.


Oh -- that makes perfect sense. I never realized I had that wrong. Thanks.
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