Saturday, May 21, 2005

god damnit

ok... here is an example of the reason I paid for the results on that IQ test. there were a few that I -knew- I would likely get wrong, not for lack of my own mental ability, but for lack of either accuracy or clarity on the part of the test.

for example, here is question #4, which the test stated that I got wrong.

squares and rectangles
(the green arrow being my answer, the red check being the "correct" answer)

now to clarify, a square is by defintion a rectangle, but a rectangle is by defintion NOT a square.

square: n.
1. A plane figure having four equal sides.
2. Something having an equal-sided rectangular form: a square of cloth.

rec·tan·gle: n.
A four-sided plane figure with four right angles.

now, given the above definitions, we can see that the colored portions of the 2 figures are NOT squares, but are actually rectangles. they are not even CLOSE to being squares. HOWEVER, the 4 corner shapes on the other hand ARE squares.

so, the correct answer here would obviously be "neither colored shape is actually a square, so none of the possible given answers is correct.".

but... given what I had to work with, and allowing for the fact that it is a SOLID fact that the colored rectangles are NOT squares, I had to move down the line of reasoning to the related shapes, these being the SQUARES at the 4 corners of the associated colored shapes. now, while this doesn't exactly fit the phrasing of the question, neither do the given answers fit the facts.

so I had 2 options. either dumb myself down to allow for the fact that they probably made the mistake of incorrectly calling 2 rectangles "squares", or I actually use my brain to follow a train of logic and make the best guess in what would, in an abstract reasoning sense, be a trick question/answer.

obviously I was shooting for a higher score, so I chose the more accurate per definition answer... and got it wrong.

now, while I wasn't entirely correct, being fully correct is perfectly impossible, given the fundamental error of the question.

yeah. sometimes I think too much. which is funny, given that this is an IQ test.

oh well, like Stephen said... "what, being a genius isn't good enough for you? you need to be a super genius?"

really, I just wanted to get to the bottom of it. :)


for the record, the only question I got wrong as a result of me just mentally screwing up, was the question about which would be cheaper, the ham or the beef. my mistake was in not subtracting 40% from the price, but in calculating 40% of the price and using that number. (divide by 10 to get 10%, being 25 cents, multiply by 4 to get 40% = $1, which I should have then subtracted from $2.50 to get $1.50, which would have made the ham $0.50 more than the cost of the beef while both were on sale.) one of those where I smacked my forehead after the fact, but that one was my own fault for an oversight.

the other 3 (besides the above "squares" one) that I got wrong were the stapler, which I misjudged the width of the staples and chose the second one... the chairs and table, where I figured that the size of the table in relation to the chairs wasn't specified, and therefor either both could fit, or just the last one, or none... depending on the unspecified relative scale. another I should have dumbed down for I guess. and finally, the peanut and the paper. again, another unspecified one. I could simply fold the paper into a paper airplane and drop it... it's wind resistance at that point relative to weight would be less than the peanut and therefor it would fall faster. *sigh* again, I should have just picked the obvious answer.

sometimes overthinking things isn't the best route.

yay for Occam's Razor.


Lisa said...

ok. I have three things to say.

1. I love the way your mind works.
2. I love the way you manipulate words and your acerbic sense of humor.
3. I am linking you which means you will probably read my drivel and proceed to tear me a new asshole about the banality of my life but I will enjoy every minute of it because I like the way you write ...and I don't really care what you think of my writing!


JStressman said...


Lisa said...

Okay ...honestly ... I was hoping for a little more hmmm - words ? lol. way to leave a girl hanging.

JStressman said...

sorry, just got home... had to get everything in order. :)

I'll type more later. (in the process of packing up my apartment so that I can move across the state in the next few days)

(and Jen was on here taking that IQ test and now wants to watch Star Wars Episode III, so I have to get off the computer for awhile. be back later! I promise I'll write more.)

Lisa said...

I hope she did better on it than I~ Good thing I don't put huge stock in the results or I could be rather depressed..does IQ go down as one ages ? Something to think about =) I watched that (Star Wars) with my husband last night...which is ironic because you look and talk like his best friend Phil. I will have to see if I can wrangle a picture sometime. *hello Jen* interesting fellow you have there... I would hold on to him...

JStressman said...

dunno. Jen got a 125. my friend Mike (the jewish boy who just turned 18) got a 141... but I've consistently pointed out that I think that he's smarter than I am. ;) (smart enough to know how to correctly answer the questions on a STANDARDIZED TEST, and not go off on wild speculative tangents like I did. *sigh*)

as long as you got above 100, I wouldn't worry much. if you got down around 80, then I'm surprised you're even able to type on a computer. but given your vocabulary etc, I would guess that you didn't do very badly at all. :)

as for not typing earlier, I wanted to say thank you very much for the compliment and the link. :) I don't go out of my way to bash on people on their blogs. generally the only time I pipe up is when I see them making a rather grievous error that is based on some kind of ignorance... only then do I usually jump in and try to correct it with an oft times unfortunately heavy hand. :P

I guess I'm just not good at small talk. ;)

Lisa said...

Well let's see... the last online IQ test I took ...I scored the same as you.. 131. On THIS one however... apparently I am as intelligent as an ape.. 96. WTF ??? Okay, an ape that has been taught sign language apparently! BLAH it put me in a horrible mood all night... I kept telling my husband he should divorce me because I am just barely above short bus level.

FOR the record, I don't evidenced by my putting up my disgusting score. AND I am retaking that test when I get back home next week. Something is fishy in Denmark I tell you!

Third and final comment... I don't think I have yet touched on any socially pertinent issues in my blog there really is nothing to slice me down about. (yet) When there is though, I LOVE a good debate. =)

JStressman said...


actually, on the last IQ test I took (which is actually talked about and listed several posts earlier), the classic IQ test, I scored a 136 I believe. I took it a few times and consistently scored a 136 or 137 I think.

if I retook the super IQ test, even having not seen the answers, I would have scored higher. having scored a 131, I was going to go back and answer the few questions that I was pretty sure I was going to get wrong, the way I figured that they wanted them to be answered, and then verified whether or not I got a higher score. trial and error of sorts I guess. :P

I suppose in the future, I should just mentally note "standardized test" and answer accordingly. (but knowing the way my brain works, I'll -still- overthink it and "screw it up". I'm not sure what's worse... thinking too far beyond the question, or dumbing myself down so to speak and getting the question right. I guess both have their pros and cons)

also, there is another test listed in my older post that was a lot harder... if I remember correctly, it was all verbal and was timed. both Stephen and I did much worse on that one... (only 100 and 105 while drunk)

I might try that one again one of these days while sober to see if I can't redeem myself. :-P hehe

just remember... in the end, standardized IQ tests really don't mean all that much. fun food for thought, but hopefully I illustrated that with the one I took, a train of thought that at least I consider to be more intelligent and whatnot, actually became a detriment in the test.

the only thing I can figure is that maybe you're supposed to be SO smart, that you understand that it's a standardized test and then adjust your answers accordingly, thereby showing considerable mental flexibility on top of considerable mental prowess. ;)

bah! there I go again thinking too much. ;P

by the way... as smart as Mike is (the kid who got 10 points higher than I did), he says that his girlfriend is even SMARTER THAN HE IS.

\(^o^)/ <( INCONCEIVABLE!!! )

at least it makes me feel better to know that there are kids our there that are far smarter as teenagers than I am as an adult 13 years their senior. :') gives me that spark of faith in humanity again...

for a few minutes until I look at the news and my acute misanthropy sets back in. ;P