our brains constantly amaze me. we used to think the external world had little influence on the brain, short of a catastrophe, and that news would definitely be bad. now we know that talk therapy changes the brain and that (another new book out there) we can train our brains to memorize whole books. people used to. as for intelligence, in the past we were told that our intelligence was fixed at birth and — sorry for those accidents of birth — that we were either smart or we weren’t. and then an intelligence test was adopted (and debated) that scored normal intelligence at 100 (based on central tendency of a normal curve) and that anything about 140 was genius. if we weren’t geniuses, then we were to be content with our fates and go find white collar jobs, hopefully. but now we can increase our intelligence! does this mean that we can all become geniuses? if everyone becomes a genius, won’t some statistician come along and re-normalize the distribution so that 100 is “average” again, demonstrating that measures of central tendency have no real meaning?