0) We don’t have IQ tests from 1830 (the beginning of the revolution). Only response tests from later in the 1800’s.
1) the response tests have dropped. (I am still fussing about this one), and response time is pretty much a proxy for iq (which in an age of neural networks we should understand is obvious).
2) The flynn effect has stopped and now reversed.
3) All the gains were at the bottom of the distribution, and the top has remained the same or decreased. (age confirms it)
4) The differences are not in g-loaded parts of the tests, and g-loaded parts are unchanged.
5) Relative positioning remains constant:
—“While the secular gains are on g-loaded tests (such as the Wechsler), they are negatively correlated with the most g-loaded components of those tests. Also, the tests lose their g loadedness over time with training, retesting, and familiarity. In an analysis of mathematics and reading scores from tests such as the NAEP and Coleman Report over the last 54 years, we show that there has been no narrowing of the gap in either IQ scores or in educational achievement. From 1954 to 2008, Black 17-year-olds have consistently scored at about the level of White 14-year-olds, yielding IQ equivale”—-
6) We do in fact get a bit better with practice. Not a lot better but better enough to reduce volatility, which would not improve test coverage, but reduce error in tests performed. In other words we aren’t smarter we reduce errors.
7) General knowledge ‘saturation’ produces patterns involuntarily that has to be learned intentionally (or by reading) as in the past.
As I understand it, people are ‘smarter in general’ for the simple reason that by ‘thinking scientifically’ we in fact are training ourselves to apply general rules. In other words, people at the turn of the century were more likely to think in instance-rules and commands, than general rules, and we have in fact gotten better at the use of general rules. Hence why I am an advocate for the German and English Languages, and in particular operational language, because I am certain that the same gains will be produced as were produced by scientific thought (general rules).
Ergo, this is much scarier: that means some ideas not only make us dumber, they imprison us in dumbness.