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HappyCoder

On being called a Genius.

66 posts in this topic

He is definitely sort of right, whether or not its all about the environment in that way is something we may never answer since we aren't allowed to experiment on humans, for good reasons obviously.

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Isn't 'genius' currently measured as 150 IQ, which is a floating scale on which 100 is the average of all humans? Maybe it was the median, I can't remember.

 

Yeah, genius is supposed to be "verified" around a 150IQ but IQ is a measurement imposed by a test which can be fundamentally flawed in the actual understanding of a persons intellectual potential and thus can be redefined.

Kind of like how we could redefine the distance of a mile to mean a mere 1000 feet and if it's widely accepted, then our definition of a mile has changed. Again, making it relative.

 

And yeah, gotta agree with Hodgman on what he said. A persons innate potential is huge and when it comes down to it, the environment (in this case meaning how they are raised) would have a profound impact on what direction they may take in life, much like the example given of given the right triggers and influences early in a child's development which can greatly affect their ability to tackle certain tasks; in this case programming.

 

Or maybe we're all destined to be that one thing and we pick up on those little tid-bits of information when we're younger because those are where we're meant to be. And that could explain why some things are so very difficult for us where as others seem to come so easy.

 

But that's just me getting all philosophical again. biggrin.png

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I have a completely back-to-front view of innate talent/potential than Swift/Phantom's ideas above -- the way I see it, every human has immense potential, but we're all severely handicapped. It just happens that in our birth and early upbringing, some people end up with less handicap in some areas than others.

 

It's not that I have an innate talent in programming, or that my programming potential is higher than the average person -- it's that the average person has a higher programming handicap than I did. Through chance, I'd had certain ideas planted in my head at an early age, that when it came to programming class, I'd already had a huge head-start thinking about the required concepts (and an interest in them), and thus took to these classes easily. It's nothing special about me, it's a lucky coincidence in my childhood environment.

 

The whole "if you just try hard enough you can do anything" Schick is right and wrong. Handicaps can be overcome, but it becomes harder with every year of age, and sometimes, the window of opportunity might simply have never appeared in the first place -- e.g. someone born deaf might not be lucky enough to have a family that can afford a bionic ear implant, and even then, their brain will have missed out on audio inputs for so long, that it won't have developed in the same way as someone born with 'regular' hearing. No matter how hard they try, it's very unlikely they'll ever hear music in the same way I do.


Take a person who's diagnosed with Autism at 4 years of age and wait, and then try and get them to overcome that at 40 years of age -- not much chance.

Take that same person when they're 4 and work with them continuously and you've got a better chance at putting a dent in their handicap.

I disagree with this premise.  According to you, anyone can achieve to the same extent someone else achieved in the EXACT SAME environment.  You're saying at birth, nothing is special about any of us, only the environment shapes us, and anyone can become anything.

 

Do you also believe things like reflexes and hand-eye coordination can be learned in the correct environment?  What about having perfect pitch?  Is that something anyone can get, if they are raised in the correct environment?  And other "gifts" people are born with.  IMO, these are a type of intelligence as well, and, for certain professions, having these traits gives them a leg up on the competition.

 

That's my opinion on it.  But, really, aren't we all just re-hashing nature versus nurture here?

 

EDIT:  that doesn't mean the environment a person grows up in doesn't affect them; it does, massively, but, 2 people raised in the exact same environment can vary in what they are good and bad at.

Edited by BeerNutts
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According to you, anyone can achieve to the same extent someone else achieved in the EXACT SAME environment.  You're saying at birth, nothing is special about any of us, only the environment shapes us, and anyone can become anything.
No, I said birth and upbringing. The genes that you're born with will have some impact on how you develop, that's a given, as we know from controlled breeding in other species. Also, the experiences of your mother during pregnancy have a huge impact on what you'll be like at birth, as you're basically hijacking her body chemistry at that point, and she's your main source of information about what the outside world is like.
 
In the grand scheme of a lifetime of human achievement, genes play a very minor role though, except in the extreme cases where people are born with obvious handicaps.
 
Also, you're using a extremely simplified view of what a person's environment is.
that doesn't mean the environment a person grows up in doesn't affect them; it does, massively, but, 2 people raised in the exact same environment can vary in what they are good and bad at.
No two people are ever raised in the exact same environment. Environmental factors are everything that's ever entered your body or your senses, from when you were a foetus up until now. The human mind is extremely complex, which makes the butterfly effect so powerful and unpredictable. The smallest, most trivial thing may have a huge impact on your thoughts or personality later in life, and the earlier it happens, the bigger impact it will have.
But, really, aren't we all just re-hashing nature versus nurture here?
Nature vs nurture is a ridiculous and out-dated argument. The nature people are cold-hearted elitist, classist, racist jerks, and the nurture people are wild crazy hippies disconnected from reality. It's a false dichotomy. You can't nurture a pig into the next great English poet, and you can't raise someone "from good stock" in the world of Mad Max and have them come out as the perfect gentleman.
Do you also believe things like reflexes and hand-eye coordination can be learned in the correct environment?  What about having perfect pitch?
Yes, an infant doesn't have those skills and has to learn them. There are points in your life where those skills develop, and it's possible to miss those points or experience them differently.
 
Raise an infant in a sensory deprivation chamber and they'll be a vegetable, no matter what their genes are like.
 
One reason that some autistic children have trouble communicating and experience "sensory overload" when they're talked to, is because the part of their brain that differentiates pitch hasn't developed at the time that it normally does, which affects many other skills, like selecting appropriate words from your vocabulary, etc... Performing training exercises that require the use of this area causes an strengthening of all of these skills -- training someone to differentiate pitch more accurately also improves their written language skills!
There's stroke or gunshot victims that have lost parts of their brain where skills to do with coordination or language are usually processed, and with enough training, they can re-learn these skills from scratch in other parts of their brain. That pretty much proves that there's nothing magic about these skills. It's all just learning and practice, with some regions of the brain being better suited for tasks than others, so a kind of neuronal Darwinian selection causes those skills to develop in those locations.
 
The brain also isn't static -- you can 'map' parts of it, e.g. by sticking an electrode in a part to do with the sensation of touch, and asking the participant where they felt a touch on their body. Do this to map out the region of the brain corresponding to their index fingertip, then train them for weeks in a task that requires great fidelity in the tip of their finger, then map their brain again, and you'll find the area of the brain corresponding to their fingertip is now bigger -- there's more computing power dedicated to analyzing the information coming from their finger! However, keep doing this over time, and more efficient neuronal patterns are formed and selected, so that the brain doesn't need as much 'hardware' any more (it has instead specialized a smaller bit of 'hardware') and their finger map returns to a similar size than it was originally, but their increased haptic fidelity remains.
There's a constant battle going on with different tasks fighting over the hardware resources available, trying to specialize them to their own needs. There's also many phases in your life where your hormones and brain chemistry are measurably different, which encourages growth, or encourages "pruning" of unused networks, or encourages solidification. If you fail to learn an essential skill at the right time, you might end up with the brain's version of an atrophied muscle, which can be very hard to recover from once adulthood is reached. Edited by Hodgman
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Success is a combination of hard work, luck, and connections.

This is only true because you put the word “success” in there. We are talking about just being extremely skilled/genius, and that does not mean such people get recognized/famous, so it should not be part of the equation.

I continue to struggle to accept the fact that programmers, people who--one would think--are inherently only interested in concepts that are logical and have proven accuracy, would still believe in talent. Talent is a word for an unproven, magical substance that by all appearances does not exist. We look at the fact that someone is incredibly successful and famous and skilled, and we try to make assumptions about how the person became that way. It's like trying to guess the rule of a mathematical function based on its output and only a vague understanding of its input.
 
Success is a combination of hard work, luck, and connections. There is very sparsely any genetic, physical, astronomical, mathematical or neurological evidence, anywhere, in any research, that suggests people are born with inherent skills at things as arbitrarily designed and culturally specific as a genre of music (in Mozart's case) or sport (in Michael Jordan's case).
The closest thing to "having talent" that I will entertain as plausible is a sort of affinity.

But this idea that you have to have some kind of "gift" to excel at things irritates me.
Too much to quote.

Sorry, but I beg to differ.

Firstly, Mozart. Classical pianist at age 5. Think he was special just because his father was a teacher? My friend’s was too. That friend is now a musical teacher too! But no Mozart. Watch YouTube for videos of young kids playing piano. There is a school where little kids are taught complicated pieces, but if you have any musical sense at all you will hear clearly that they are just drumming out the notes. And none of them are composers.
That’s about 1,000 children growing up in even better conditions than Mozart did and failing to become a Mozart.  That includes even his sisters.

Practice and hard work? I have put in more hours than Mozart had at that age and I will never be a Mozart.
Things clicked for him that will not click for just anyone. It doesn’t matter what your up-bringing is etc. However had he not been exposed to piano he would never have made classical music. That’s fairly obvious, but you can’t extrapolate that into meaning that just because he was exposed to piano he became a classical artist. Exposure is one condition, and innate natural talent to let it fly is another. You need both.  For all I know I am a genius accordion player by that logic.

 

And it is true that our natural curiosities lean us towards exposure to the things at which we might be good, but again you can’t extrapolate from that.  I started piano because I was interested and curious, and my love of it it made me work hard too.  You can’t extrapolate from that.  I suck at piano and I always will.  I am technically proficient and there is a lot of feeling in my playing, but I will never be Mozart.

 

 

Innate talent doesn’t exist?

How did I draw this at the age of 12?

age_12_raptor_by_l_spiro-dypf8c.jpg

Do you think it is because I practiced and put 10,000 hours into drawing by the age of 12?

My mother keeps a picture I drew when I was 3 that she calls “muscle man”.  I don’t even remember it but she claims all of the muscles were correct etc.

 

In fact, in my entire life, I have put in approximately 600 hours into art, and this is what I draw these days:

japanese_model_wip_1_by_l_spiro-d1cts02.

 

600 hours in my life, 76 of which were spent just on this.

 

 

Environmental factors?

Nobody taught me to draw.  In fact, I hate drawing.  I was being told since kindergarten that I was going to be a Disney animator, and I almost made the mistake of pursuing what others expected me to be instead of what I wanted to be.

 

600 hours total in my entire life, and I have been called one of the best in the world?  No I don’t take a lot of stock in something that does not come from an artist, but that is exactly the basis of this thread anyway (being called a genius by people who don’t know any better).  The point is, without innate ability, how do you ever ever ever get called one of the best in the world at anything?

 

And again, if you want to talk about environment and upbringings, I am sorry but I hate art, I hate drawing, and there are about 1,000,000,000 people who enjoy art more than I do and have put many more hours into it.

 

 

I hate to use my own work to illustrate my point but I don’t know a better way.

There is just no question about it.  People are born wired a certain way.  And that way may seem so open-ended that you might mistake it for being completely open-ended, but it’s not.

 

 

Every human can learn to do a lot of things, yes.  And sometimes they lose potential by not being exposed to certain things.  But don’t let that confuse you.  The wiring is loose but it is there.

Most people will never draw as I do no matter how hard they try.

I will never be Mozart or John Williams no matter how hard I try.

phil67rpg will never program like Hodgman no matter how hard he tries.

 

Facts of life.  Innate abilities exist.  Time of exposure or lack of exposure are certainly factors, but you can’t just blindly say innate abilities (or talents/gifts) do not exist.

 

 

L. Spiro

Edited by L. Spiro
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Firstly, Mozart. Classical pianist at age 5. Think he was special just because his father was a teacher?
That’s about 1,000 children growing up in even better conditions than Mozart did and failing to become a Mozart.  That includes even his sisters.
Things clicked for him that will not click for just anyone. It doesn’t matter what your up-bringing is etc.
...
you can’t extrapolate that into meaning that just because he was exposed to piano he became a classical artist.
Again, you're simplifying what a person's "environment" is far too much. I never said anything about people being exposed to pianos early in life becoming great pianists.
For all you know, the root cause of Mozart's musical spark wasn't even anything musical, or even aural. It could have been the wind from the flap of a butterfly's wings, or the rhythm of a coughing fit, or a fever-induced seizure. It could have been a particular smack on the arse, or the sight of a colour at the right time, or a dream about pasta. Cause and effect when it comes to a person's thoughts is too complicated to ever pin down the answer to "I'm thinking this thought now because of this particular cause".


What is "innate talent"? When does it become present in a person? I'm saying that "innate talent" is an emergent property caused by all the same chaotic cause and effect as any other part of a person's thoughts and feelings.
They exist as an emergent behaviour that we can talk about, but they're not a concrete thing, they've underlying causes in the real world.

What's the other option? That it's in their genetic make-up? That's false because identical twins can have different "innate talents".
So the only remaining option is that it's just magic. People are a mind, a body, and some magic ethereal soul-thing that contains random blessings.
I don't accept magic.
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Again, you're simplifying what a person's "environment" is far too much. I never said anything about people being exposed to pianos early in life becoming great pianists.
For all you know, the root cause of Mozart's musical spark wasn't even anything musical, or even aural. It could have been the wind from the flap of a butterfly's wings, or the rhythm of a coughing fit, or a fever-induced seizure. It could have been a particular smack on the arse, or the sight of a colour at the right time, or a dream about pasta.

By this point, don’t you think you are being too extreme in the opposite direction?
I also did not say Mozart was great because of his exposure to pianos early in life. Many people get exposed to pianos early in life and don’t become Mozart.
But when you continue from there about how it could have been a butterfly’s wing-flap, what is the point in even going further? That’s about the same thing as religious folk who rely on the fact that God can’t be disproved, so the debate must continue.
 

What is "innate talent"? When does it become present in a person? I'm saying that "innate talent" is an emergent property caused by all the same chaotic cause and effect as any other part of a person's thoughts and feelings.
They exist as an emergent behaviour that we can talk about, but they're not a concrete thing, they've underlying causes in the real world.

What's the other option? That it's in their genetic make-up? That's false because identical twins can have different "innate talents".
So the only remaining option is that it's just magic. People are a mind, a body, and some magic ethereal soul-thing that contains random blessings.
I don't accept magic.

I don’t accept magic either, but I assume you do not contest my ability in art, do you?
Identical twins also do not have the same fingerprints. That’s not magic—just genetics. A single egg permutates off 2 different sperm cells. They are not the same human. They are not necessarily gifted the same way. Half of your gifts come from the father, right? (Not to be taken too literally since the balance is also very variable.)

When does “innate” talent become present in a person? As far as I know it is as soon as they are born. I honestly can’t remember a single day in my life when I was not able to draw realistically.
I remember when I had just turned 4 and was in pre-school when I saw a girl in my class drawing her grass like huge sawblades and I tried to show her the correct way to draw grass as little strands, and some asshole bully told me to pick on someone my own size (huh??).


To be frank though my ability in art has been nothing but a curse, which only proves my point more.
I never asked for it.
I never tried to get it nor improve upon it.

The more people who keep asking me to draw things the more of a burden it is in my life.
You want proof that people are given innate abilities and talents?

I have been forced to making stupid fucking Christmas cards since I was 5 just because I drew cartoon humans better than my mother (who was making Christmas cards until I came along).

I was forced to draw our school’s retarded comics during junior high.

 

 

Even in just typing this out you can’t imagine the anger and resentment that is boiling up inside of me.

No-one put a gun to my head but I was young and didn’t know how to say No.  Same thing as force.

 

I have hated every moment that I have spent drawing except for a few very rare gems, and yet some of you people have the gall to say that my level of art could only come from hard work and motivation?

600 hours I spent drawing and about 400 of those were out of spite for those who made up for their own inability by using me as a proxy?

 

I never asked for the ability to draw, and my ability to draw means nothing to me (you should have heard my mother when I said this at the age of 10).

I don’t know how this could not be clearer.

People are born with innate abilities, even if they didn’t even want them in the first place.  Even if those abilities are really just curses.

How can you even argue this any further knowing that my “one of the best in the world” ability in art is nothing but a curse that I would gladly trade away for the same ability in music?

 

Speaking out of the frustration that has built up inside of me just posting this reply, I would gladly trade this stupid fucking worthless talent in art for the same ability in music/piano.

I am an artist first, then a programmer second, skip a few and I am a musician last.  To be frank, I would rather it be the exact opposite.  And I had an equal chance at all of these things.

So talking all this nonsense about the lack of innate abilities and how everyone starts off on the same slate is literally truly just insulting to me.

 

 

I have accepted (quite obviously) that I am not designed for music, but all this shit about how we all start off on the same footing is just rubbing in my nose the fact that we aren’t.

It was what I wanted, and I couldn’t do it.  I can’t make music, and nothing would ever change that except genetics.  A different father or a different mother.  Or maybe a different egg or sperm.

 

In any case, I accept my fate.  I can’t be a musician no matter how hard I try.

I just wish the rest of you would stop belittling me by insinuating what I could have been with the proper up-bringing or environment.  I have put more than 20 times the hours/dedication/passion into music as I have into art.

Show some respect please.  I had the same chance at all the things I do, and I excel at some and not at others.  Those don’t align with what I wanted to do, and I have accepted that.  I think if I could accept that, you should also be able to do so.

 

 

L. Spiro

Edited by L. Spiro
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[quote name='Hodgman' timestamp='1358765973' post='5023836']
I'm saying that "innate talent" is an emergent property caused by all the same chaotic cause and effect as any other part of a person's thoughts and feelings.[/quote]

So we've gone from my hand-wavey definition of 'innate' talent to your hand-wavey definition of 'emergent' talent.

 

I don't think we are really saying different things here - both schemes admit the possibility that a given person may have a much greater affinity for a given set of tasks, and that it may be arbitrarily hard for a person with a different set of affinities to excel in the same way... So at this point, I'm not sure what the distinction buys us, in terms of the present debate?

 

Also, to back up for a moment to a genetic basis for talent, I think this (well researched) blog posting on musical talent is worth at least a cursory reading.

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I'm saying that "innate talent" is an emergent property caused by all the same chaotic cause and effect as any other part of a person's thoughts and feelings.

 

So we've gone from my hand-wavey definition of 'innate' talent to your hand-wavey definition of 'emergent' talent.

 

I don't think we are really saying different things here - both schemes admit the possibility that a given person may have a much greater affinity for a given set of tasks, and that it may be arbitrarily hard for a person with a different set of affinities to excel in the same way... So at this point, I'm not sure what the distinction buys us, in terms of the present debate?

 

Also, to back up for a moment to a genetic basis for talent, I think this (well researched) blog posting on musical talent is worth at least a cursory reading.

If we are not in control of developing our talents or the talents of others they may as well be genetic. The point isn't really whether they are genetic, but whether we can control them. Since both of you have established that we cannot control them, even if you use different justifications, there is no more reason to argue.

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I'm saying that "innate talent" is an emergent property caused by all the same chaotic cause and effect as any other part of a person's thoughts and feelings.

 

So we've gone from my hand-wavey definition of 'innate' talent to your hand-wavey definition of 'emergent' talent.

 

I don't think we are really saying different things here - both schemes admit the possibility that a given person may have a much greater affinity for a given set of tasks, and that it may be arbitrarily hard for a person with a different set of affinities to excel in the same way... So at this point, I'm not sure what the distinction buys us, in terms of the present debate?

 

Also, to back up for a moment to a genetic basis for talent, I think this (well researched) blog posting on musical talent is worth at least a cursory reading.

If we are not in control of developing our talents or the talents of others they may as well be genetic. The point isn't really whether they are genetic, but whether we can control them. Since both of you have established that we cannot control them, even if you use different justifications, there is no more reason to argue.

Well, that's no fun. biggrin.png

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So we've gone from my hand-wavey definition of 'innate' talent to your hand-wavey definition of 'emergent' talent.

I didn't mean to imply you were wrong, just that I disagreed with the view of inherent talent on a personal philosophical glass half-full/empty level. I see everyone as being limited, and people with "natural talent" are just less limited in some way.
Human potential is so unimaginably high, that I don't think anyone ever reaches their potential. Take a child from 3000BC and raise them in a (rich) modern environment, and they'll be able to achieve a level of knowledge that's beyond comprehension of their siblings that weren't lucky enough to get into the time machine. In the same way, it's imaginable that there exist conditions in the aar future that make our modern upbringings look extremely primitive and undernourishing.

Innate talents are something we can talk about; they exist at that level... but they're not real... in the same way that a physicist isn't satisfied with atoms, and instead wants to look for quarks. There's an underlying cause and effect, and those effects can be harnessed.
Some people are bad at a skill, even when performing extreme amounts of practice, simply because they're thinking about it wrong - they're using the wrong bit of mental hardware to perform the task. They can sometimes be taught to think about the problem differently, but not easily, depending on their mental flexibility. Once you start practicing a skill, you reinforce it and if you practice too much in the wrong mode of thought, you might just be concreting your inefficient mode of thought and limiting your potential.

Some people are bad at a skill because their mental organs simply aren't as strong as other people. Like a muscle, you can train them to be better bits of computing hardware. Often, training in the task you want to be better at isn't always the best way. It can be useful to train in many different tasks that all use that area of the brain in order to strengthen it.

The article you linked to is basically talking about genetic predispositions. These are very different things than actually "being genetic", and are the grey-area truth between the stupid nature-vs-nurture argument. Having or not having a predisposition doesn't mean that you will be good or bad at something though, it's just an indicator that the best method for teaching you that thing will be different to others. The "best" environment for a person depends on their predispositions.

Take someone who's predisposed to having great pitch, and raise them in a community of silent monks in a silent valley, and their predisposition probably won't come into play. Take someone who doesn't have that genetic marker, and by chance, have their tone differentiation lobe receive an above average amount of stimulation in early development, and they might end up a maestro... or, have them practice read a lot in early childhood and develop a large vocabulary, and they'll be exercising the same organ!

For example, a genetic marker for a predisposition to drug addiction was found by analyzing a large number of drug addicts. In a second (wider) trial, the marker was also found in larger numbers in the general population of non drug addicts. On further analysis of all these subjects, a significant correlation was found where people with this "predisposition gene", who suffered violent abuse at around age 5, were very likely to go on to become drug addicts, whereas those who grew up without violence were unlikely. So, what seemed to be a straightforward genetic link, is actually intertwined with environmental factors.

There's many genes like this, which are present but not expressed (not "turned on"). When some particular event occurs in the mind, then that switch is flipped... which means that our very thoughts can interact with our genetics. The truth is very grey.

Identical twins also do not have the same fingerprints. That’s not magic—just genetics.

Fingerprints are the perfect analogy; they're not genetics at all. Fingerprints form their unique patterns depending on how you bump around with your foetal environment. Your mind is formed in exactly the same way - the chaotic bumping into your environment.

When does “innate” talent become present in a person? As far as I know it is as soon as they are born. I honestly can’t remember a single day in my life when I was not able to draw realistically.

No, you weren't born with the talent of realistic drawing. You could hardly even see properly when you were born, let alone have the dexterity to hold a pencil. No, you learnt to draw in childhood like everyone else (or, not quite like everyone else).

The difference between someone who draws realistically and someone who draws crude outlines is the part of their brain that they use to perform the activity. We don't all see the world the same way. The same light goes in our eyes, and mostly the same signals get sent to the brain, but there's many different ways in which those signals can then be processed and "seen" consciously. People raised in different cultures will literally see the world differently -- scan their brains to see how they're processing the visual information, and there's major differences.


The "artist's mode of vision" occurs typically in the right hemisphere, and extracts detailed information about composition, curvature, lighting/shading, colour, etc... On the other hand, the typical non-artist mode of vision occurs in the left hemisphere and extracts information more useful in our day-to-day lives, such as large-scale form, object classification, etc... Most people use the 'left mode' so much that the 'right mode' becomes so atrophied that it's almost impossible to use. Through mental training (not necessarily artistic training), you can teach someone to use this mode of thought, and to 'see' the way you do naturally.

In your case, you bumped around in just the right way that both these modes of vision were well exercised, and thus found it natural to slip into this mode of thought when drawing, leading you to early talent. It's impossible to say when this happened, but it's the accumulation of every event in your life from conception up to that point. Your mind develops at an inversely exponential rate, and the amount of development in your first 9 months is phenomenal  You could well have had above-average visual/spatial processing abilities at birth, but could have also developed them later.

It could have been the above-average development of a particular brain lobe, or the below-average development of another (which caused you to compensate by using other parts more, strengthening them), or both, or neither.

I remember when I had just turned 4 and was in pre-school when I saw a girl in my class drawing her grass like huge sawblades and I tried to show her the correct way to draw grass as little strands, and some asshole bully told me to pick on someone my own size (huh??).

If you see a child expressing themselves artistically, and you go and tell them that they're doing it wrong, they'll very likely become upset, confused and offended. A child overhearing your remarks will react the same way empathically. This is off topic, but it's a good opportunity to point out that many of the down-votes that you get on this site to this day are because of the same kind of miscommunication, where your good intentions are betrayed by a lack of tact.

I have hated every moment that I have spent drawing except for a few very rare gems, and yet some of you people have the gall to say that my level of art could only come from hard work and motivation?

I didn't say that at all.

Someone to whom drawing doesn't come naturally could improve their possibility of producing similar results, given enough hard work and motivation, and the right circumstances. Not necessarily hard work at drawing, either. The brain regions used for drawing are also used for so many other skills -- it's a shared bit of hardware, so hard work to exercise and strengthen that hardware will benefit all of those skills.

Edited by Hodgman
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I am convinced that emotional intelligence contributes much to success in most occupations for most people, even increasing the intellectual adaptability.
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Identical twins also do not have the same fingerprints. That’s not magic—just genetics.

Fingerprints are the perfect analogy; they're not genetics at all. Fingerprints form their unique patterns depending on how you bump around with your foetal environment. Your mind is formed in exactly the same way - the chaotic bumping into your environment.



In your case, you bumped around in just the right way that both these modes of vision were well exercised, and thus found it natural to slip into this mode of thought when drawing, leading you to early talent.

By this point it seems as though we are arguing basically the same thing. I am simplifying it to the words “innate ability” while you are describing a scientific process resulting in the same thing.

But I have a feeling that you would want to take it further than just bumping around, position inside the womb, etc.
I can’t agree. Not that there is any way to prove it, but I simply don’t believe that 2 fetuses get created exactly the same way if bumping, position, mother’s diet, etc., are all identical.
Just the same as we all look different due to how the different atoms/particles/cells got distributed as we are constructed, we also have different internal structures. If fewer cells get distributed to certain parts of the brain, a person is born blind or deaf, dumb or smart, wired for skill in this or in that, etc.

And yes you can come up with scientific theories as to why the cells got distributed how they did but then you start to miss the point.
Everything is science, so when we talk about innate abilities we accept that there is some predictable logical scientific rationale behind the end result, but it’s so complex we can’t understand nor predict it.
“Innate ability” is just a simplified term for all those complex unpredictable happenings.

 

This is off topic, but it's a good opportunity to point out that many of the down-votes that you get on this site to this day are because of the same kind of miscommunication, where your good intentions are betrayed by a lack of tact.

It’s also keeping me from being a moderator for a very long time, and I am aware of it.
I originally made the conscious choice to be a little over-the-top direct, but it’s gone too far and in the last few weeks I have toned it down.
I even put a smiley in one of my replies a few days ago (“Hello and welcome to the site! smile.png”).
And then my computer crashed and I didn’t want to rewrite the reply again.  sad.png 

 

I didn't say that at all.

Not you, just a slew of people throughout my life, on deviantArt, etc.


L. Spiro

Edited by L. Spiro
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I don't know how often this happens to any of you but I don't really like it when people think of me as some genius because of what I can do in computer programming. I feel like it sets up an expectation that I should be good at anything that requires thinking. That isn't always the case. I feel like I have gotten good at computer programming because I enjoy it and put in lots of time to get to where I am. I feel like almost anybody who put the time in could develop the same skills. Your thoughts?

 

I definitely agree. I feel uncomfortable when being given praise for my traits and qualities (not so much my achievements) in general. I mentioned it somewhere around here that I'm not one to boast or speak of my achievements and capabilities with high regard. I think this is an adverse effect of true humility/modesty which are in and of themselves great qualities you should be proud you possess happy.png When you are called a genius, or something along the line happens, just do what I do. Bashfully smile, look down, shake your head no while shrugging your shoulders and most importantly remind yourself to keep your ego in check. Modesty and Humility are hard to attain but even harder to maintain.

 

?§• ??§?

Sin

Edited by SinisterPride
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on deviantArt, etc

You do realize deviantArt is one of the worst sources for legitimate information and feedback, right?  The signal to noise ratio there is abysmally low.  It's mostly untalented (I guess in context of this thread, we'd call them "lazy") wanna-be's or young beginner class-sketchers patting eachother on the back and whining that they're not as good as the 20 or 30 most popular collections.  I've seen some of the flak your art takes there, it's just the rabid mis-projected self-loathing of said lazy artists, nothing you should be genuinely concerned with.

 

I have an account there because it's free well-organized gallery space with potential revenue sources.  I tried poking my head into their forums once or twice, and I just reel back afterwards shuddering.

 

.::This sidebar brought to you by procrastination::.

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I believe that most people vastly underestimate the power of the brain to adapt, though for some it may take years of very hard work and persistence more than others.

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