The brain scans of high IQ people

What would we expect to find if we exam­ined the brain scans of peo­ple with high ver­sus aver­age IQ scores? We might pic­ture the active brain of an Ein­stein as a hotbed of smol­der­ing col­ors ”but we’d be wrong. Neu­rol­o­gist Richard Restak sum­ma­rized a UCLA study that com­pared indi­vid­u­als with high IQs to those with aver­age IQs. Restak wrote, The researchers started off with the seem­ingly rea­son­able idea that ‘smarter brains work harder, gen­er­ate more energy, and con­sume more glu­cose. Like light bulbs, the brains of bright peo­ple were expected to illu­mi­nate more intensely than those of dimwits with a reduced wattage.  What they dis­cov­ered instead was exactly the oppo­site. Higher IQ peo­ple had cooler, more sub­dued brain scans “while their less intel­lec­tu­ally gifted coun­ter­parts lit up like minia­ture Christ­mas trees..
Why would smarter brains work less hard? One strong bet is that when we are inex­pe­ri­enced ”when we still have a lot to learn we have to make a con­scious effort to think about what we’re doing. But later, after we’ve become more adept, much of what ini­tially took effort becomes automatic
.”
Madeleine Van Hecke, et al
in their book, “The Brain Advantage.”

In effect, it seems that high IQ people are able to more easily filter the signal from the noise, knowing what information to process to derive an outcome without need to process all the other spurious thoughts.

You could say that the OSS equivalent is represented by the smarter ways of picking out insights from the deluge of data collected by our suite of systems. It is in the domains of alarm and performance management where cooler OSS brain scans are required [Ed. Where cooler heads prevail??]. Techniques such as Non-negative matrix factorization (NMF), k-means clustering, pattern matching, statistical correlation and other machine learning techniques offer great promise for filtering out the important events from the unimportant (as described in this video from Moogsoft).

Just don’t ask me to explain how any of these techniques actually work. Unfortunately my brain scans would be showing up in reds and yellows rather than the cool blues of high IQ people!

Read the Passionate About OSS Blog for more or Subscribe to the Passionate About OSS Blog by Email

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.