Friday, June 04, 2021

Pupil Size Is a Marker of Intelligence

SciAm reports:
Our pupils respond to more than just the light. They indicate arousal, interest or mental exhaustion. Pupil dilation is even used by the FBI to detect deception. Now work conducted in our laboratory at the Georgia Institute of Technology suggests that baseline pupil size is closely related to individual differences in intelligence. The larger the pupils, the higher the intelligence, as measured by tests of reasoning, attention and memory. In fact, across three studies, we found that the difference in baseline pupil size between people who scored the highest on the cognitive tests and those who scored the lowest was large enough to be detected by the unaided eye.
Some day AI programs and surveillance cameras will automatically detect such things, and decide what we can and cannot do.

A new TED Talk on The science behind how parents affect child development | Yuko Munakata claims that parents have no measurable effect on how their kids turn out.

That sounds bizarre, but here is a new study out of Finland concluding:

Associations between childhood family income and subsequent risks for psychiatric disorders, substance misuse and violent crime arrest were not consistent with a causal interpretation.
If true, and applicable outside Finland, then it is foolish to believe that monetary subsidies to families will have any effect on those problems.

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