Human ability and the brain

I have noticed two distinct categories of ability in humans: specialized and generic. They certainly can be found in different variations of quantity in various humans, but it is easier to note (and thus study) them in the “extraordinary” amount; so we’ll now refer to this quantity type.

The first type of ability, the specialized one, is more common and more focused. And I have come to the conclusion that it must closely relate with the amount of neurons & neural synapses that are available in the specific area of the brain that handles the corresponding type of activity. For example, if somebody has a lot of neurons in the area of the brain that handles body movement, he can become quite easily a very able dancer.

Side-note: I don’t know much (actually almost nothing) about brain physiology so I don’t know if it’s the amount of neurons or the amount of synapses or something else, but I am certain that a structural element of the brain is more abundant in a specific location/area of the brain and this is the differentiating factor that drives a person towards excellence in a specialized field of human expression. This exact factor allows for more “complexity” to be stored/categorized/sorted/handled in this area of the brain and thus what is judged as difficult for others is easy for this specific person (I’ll have to also write an article about what difficulty is and it will become clearer then).

In the same manner, somebody with “a lot of neurons” (or that other structural thing that I don’t know) in the visual cortex is very capable of remembering many visual details and all the different faces that he has seen, whereas I for example cannot store anything but the very basic details about images & scenes of the past.

There are many places where a person might happen to have a greater concentration of neurons (if any) in his brain and thus give him an advantage over his peer on a specific set of skills. That’s why we can say that some people have a high IQ, or a high EQ, or high social intelligence (SQ?), or are very able with speech, or have a vivid memory, or have excellent motor skills. Now, it doesn’t mean that by having this extra concentration he will become extraordinary in this field; as we said there is a significant variation in the quantity of “extra” neurons somebody can have, but also in the environment that can nurture such growth with relevant stimuli or hinder growth by not applying the proper incentives or opportunities. But what is certain is that if somebody has this extra quantity, it is certainly within his potential to become great in this area, whether it materializes or not.

Finding the brain area with this structural advantage should be a major goal of the professional orientation courses for kids… After all that’s why we send kids to various activities in early age and try to assess in what they’re good at! Do they have good motor abilities and are suited for sports?

Finally, I would tend not to discriminate between these types of specialized abilities. First and foremost because nobody had a choice as to where to allocate his/her extra neurons, second because having any type of specialized ability is uncommon with regards to the rest of the populace (many don’t have such specialized abilities at all!) and third because most extraordinary special talents can prove to be of use.

On the other hand, what is quite special and rare is the “generic” type of extraordinary ability. I have seen very, very few people with such a type of ability. It’s the type that you give them a task, however unfamiliar to them, and with time they master it and jump ahead of the pack. And of course it also has to do with the driving forces of these individuals and the environment which has we said can enhance or reduce this expression, but the key differentiating factor is that they can be very good at anything; and this is truly special. They can be good at math, but then you expose them to something very unrelated like understanding and dealing with your emotions and soon they grow to have a very good EQ. They might have started as totally unsocial, but then you bring them to the real world you show them the importance of good social skills and soon they can manage people and grow to a high social aptitude… and the list goes on. Of course one might argue that this type of ability, the generic kind, has much lesser chance of achieving true greatness in a field (e.g. a person with general ability will never be like Will Hunting). But I would really prefer if we had more of Leonardo Da Vinci in this world than of Einstein. In any case this is just a personal preference, making predictions as to what of the two would benefit more humanity if you had to choose…

Finally, what I wanted to point out regarding generic ability is (in order to bind it also with Noesis Theory) that I believe that the source of such a type of ability is predominantly not attributed to the amount of neurons/synapses. Yes, it can play a role, but I believe the main differentiator of this type of people is the way they build feedback. Something in the feedback mechanism is supercharged in their brain and they can learn any type of knowledge faster and more efficiently than their fellow humans. I’m not in a position to postulate on the exact mechanism, but if I had to search, feedback would be my first target.

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Posted on December 23, 2012, in Comments & sidenotes. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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