This episode's vocabulary
- Contingent on sth - depending on something else in the future in order to happen.
- Engage (verb) - to become involved, or have contact, with someone or something.
- Tailor (verb) - to adjust something to suit a particular need or situation.
- Doubt (noun) - (a feeling of) not being certain about something, especially about how good or true it is.
- Willingness (noun) - the quality of being happy to do something if it is needed.
- Overlap (noun) - the amount by which two things or activities cover the same area.
- Calibration (noun) - the process of checking a measuring instrument to see if it is accurate.
- Assembly line (noun) - a line of machines and workers in a factory that a product moves along while it is being built or produced. Each machine or worker performs a particular job that must be finished before the product moves to the next position in the line.
- Mainstay (noun) - the most important part of something, providing support for everything else.
- Spatial (adj.) - relating to the position, area, and size of things.
- Alienate (verb) - to cause someone or a group of people to stop supporting and agreeing with you.
- Dubious (adj.) - feeling doubt or not feeling certain.
- Mimic (verb) - to copy the way in which a particular person usually speaks and moves, usually in order to make people laugh.
- Malevolence (noun) - the quality of causing or wanting to cause harm or evil.
Questions and Answers
M: Rory, are you ready to rock and roll?
M: Okay, let's talk about intelligence in children. What kinds of games can help children become more intelligent?
R: Well, that's probably contingent on the aspect of intelligence you want to develop. But let's take general knowledge as one example. So quizzes and team games can be useful as KEN-crosswords. strategy games like chess can help develop planning if we look at that. Some video games are useful for getting students to engage more with numbers, if we want to improve the grasp of mathematics.
M: Do you agree that talking to children is the best way to develop their intelligence?
R: Oh, absolutely. I think there might be no better way indeed. Discussions allow us to scaffold and develop ideas for young people when we can tailor them to their level. Moreover, they need to be able to communicate their ideas effectively, and talking is beneficial for them.
M: Does spending lots of time on computers make children less intelligent?
R: Well, I'm not sure about that, although it seems to affect their emotional intelligence in the real world as they become addicted to the machine and more absorbed in the online or the virtual experience. And that can cause problems when they have to deal with the real world. In terms of hard intelligence, though, I don't think there's any evidence to suggest what the case is either way.
M: Who plays a more important role in the child's development, teachers or parents?
R: Probably without a doubt is the parents. They provide the foundation for socialization, or they should, the willingness to learn confidence, genetic predispositions, and so on. Teachers can provide a guiding light in certain directions, but kids spend most of their time with their parents in general, and they're more likely to share in their values and attitudes towards the world.
M: What's the difference between the role of a teacher and a parent in the education of children?
R: Well, there's some overlap. But in general, we can see that teachers deal with hard knowledge and support cultural and personal development, while parents deal with culture and personal development while supporting hard knowledge. This is the ideal of course, sometimes we trade on each other's toes and share responsibilities.
M: Let's talk about intelligence at work. In what jobs is intelligence particularly important?
R: Well, any that involves some sort of complex calculation or calibration to specific situations like the aid of a computer, or even with the aid of a computer if you have to program it. If you look at teaching, for example, that requires you to predict what students will engage with and design activities to achieve the most effective result on those terms. By contrast, if you work on an assembly line fixing components together in a regular manner, I don't think complex intelligence is required for that.
M: What ways do people use to assess someone's intelligence?
R: Well, I think IQ tests are still the mainstay mode of testing, using a series of ways to test spatial and mathematical abilities, and maybe linguistic as well. You could also do direct observations of how people deal with certain situations.
M: Should managers use intelligence tests when employing new stuff?
R: I think that depends on the job, doesn't it? Do you need to test an employee if they're going to be applying to be a janitor, for example?
M: Do you agree that being intelligent can sometimes be a disadvantage in the workplace?
R: Oh, absolutely not. It will almost always be either useful or neutral. It's a disadvantage if you just deliver an intelligent idea in a way that alienates people around you. But that isn't a problem of intelligence. That's a problem of socialization and boundaries.
M: Let's now talk about artificial intelligence. In what areas of life will artificial intelligence play an important role in the future?
R: Well, it will probably have some sway over most complex aspects of life. People think that means everything but you don't need an AI in a coffeemaker. A few complex algorithms can handle that. It's more likely to be things like surgery, or perhaps teaching, though I'm dubious about that, actually,
M: Will artificial intelligence be able to match human intelligence?
R: Well, in terms of communicating factual information or complex decision making, it seems likely, though, if we're speaking in terms of convincing people to do things like how a human leader would, then I'm less certain, though if the computing power extends to mimicking people effectively, then this hurdle could be overcome.
M: Are there any risks to humanity if we rely on artificial intelligence?
R: Well, the most articulated fear is AI is turning on us, though, this seems unlikely. Maybe the lose interest but outright malevolence doesn't seem like it's going to happen with any certainty. Still, like if your traffic system is overseen by an AI and it just stops caring about people then that could be a problem. Some people have expressed fears about the loss of human independence. But we already rely on machines for so much of our daily lives. I'm not sure if that's such threat to be honest, or at least such a future threat.
M: Rory, thank you so much for your answers!
R: Hopefully they were intelligent. Oh, it's a pun. And if you like puns, you should check out our Podcourse on puns for success. I'm just kidding. There are no puns for success. There's only puns for failure.
M: Intelligence in children. So, Rory, you've said this word contingent.
R: Contingent just means it depends on.
M: So that's probably depends on so that's probably contingent on the aspect, right?
R: So contingent is much more formal it depends. If something is contingent on something it relies on it being the case completely, usually.
M: The question was about games that can help children become more intelligent. So you should give examples of games. And Rory gave us quizzes, team games, crosswords, strategy games, video games, that get students to engage more with numbers. So to engage more with something.
R: Yes, I did. Next. Sorry, if someone engages more with something, it just means that they are more absorbed with it. They're focused on it, they're showing interest. And if you're engaged more with something, then you're more likely to learn about it.
M: Cool. We can also tailor. We can tailor what?
R: Conversations to the level of students.
M: Tailor conversations, tailor discussions to the children's level.
R: Tailor in this context just means that you adjust your language to make it more suitable. So for example, you wouldn't have a discussion about quantum physics with a five year old, you'd talk to them with partial baby speak simplified terms. And you wouldn't talk to them about quantum physics. You'd talk to them about whatever you'd talk to a five year old about. Wether teddy bears.
R: Although I'm 31 and I have a teddy bear. So...
M: Oh, cute. I have a teddy rabbit. I think it's a rabbit. It's a Pinkie rabbit. It's handmade.
M: Yes. One of my CELTA trainees gave me one. She made it for me. Alright, dear listener, do you have a teddy something? Maybe you have a teddy shark? Or a teddy whale. Vanya, do you have any teddy mouse, teddy bear?
R: So yes, this is a podcast on intelligence. And here we are talking about teddy bears.
M: Anyway. Who plays a more important role in the child's development? And we can say that parents.
R: Without doubt.
M: Yeah. No doubt.
R: That just means like 100%. I say that because I'm a teacher, so I blame parents for all of the problems.
M: Oh yeah, we blame parents, absolutely.
R: Are there any parents listening? It's really your problem, it's not mine.
M: No, don't do that. Be kind to your parents. So you are hopefully a grown up person. So you are responsible for your life. Sorry. Now, you know. Again, without doubt, so no doubt. And the parents provide the foundation for socialization, socialize, so we communicate with different people who socialize. So parents provide the foundation for socialization. Willingness to learn.
R: Willingness - how willing you're.
M: Yeah. Are you willing, or you're not willing to learn.
R: You are unwilling.
M: Unwilling, right. Parents provide confidence and genetic predispositions. Genes, I don't mean clothes, I mean, genes, like, you're born with certain talents. So you have genetic predisposition. And there's a nice expression to tread on each other's toes, like parents and teachers, sometimes thread on each other's toes. What does it mean, Rory? Help me, help me.
R: It means that sometimes we try to do things, and our efforts caused conflict because they are doing different things with each other. So if you try it on someone's toes, it means that you Well usually accidentally cause them some trouble, while trying to do something. So for example, I occasionally tread on the toes of Russian teachers, because my methods are a bit different to theirs.
M: Oh, you have special Rory's method.
R: No, I just have my way of doing things that similar to other native speakers, but it's different to how teachers are taught in Russian academies for example.
M: So can I use it, for example, if I start interfering in your answers and answering the questions for you Will I be treading on your toes?
R: If I don't like it, then yes, but usually I appreciate your clarifications of my occasionally crazy explanations. Just occasionally.
M: Yeah, used to is a phrasal verb.
R: Used to is a phrasal verb. This sentence is a conditional structure, even though it's not, it's actually a complex sentence.
M: Yeah. It's okay, dear listener, English grammar is complicated. And we have different terms. And now it's getting even more complicated because one person says one thing another person says another thing and then like, what's correct? How do you decide what's correct? You know, there are lots of people, there is lot's of people. People say these things. The correct option is there are lots of people. You wanted to say something, darling.
R: There are many things I want to say. But really, what I should focus on is saying, let's move on to the next piece of vocabulary.
M: Yeah, and the question is about assess someone's intelligence. Assess means to test. Measure someone's intelligence, these IQ tests. And you said something, I think IQ tests are still that mainstay mode of testing.
R: Yeah. mainstay just means that they're, well, the main way of doing things, like it's the most common, the most popular way of doing things.
M: Have you ever done any IQ tests?
R: Oh, God, not for a while. And I don't think they were very reliable.
M: Right. Well, they can test your spatial, spatial and mathematical abilities. Spatial like space, like how well you're with space,we are not well with space. Yeah, so you can talk about IQ tests. A janitor. You've mentioned this job, a janitor. Who is a janitor?
R: A jannie that's what we used to call the school janitor.
M: Hmm. So is this a cleaner?
R: Yes, well, no, a janitor was, in Scotland, at least, a janitor is the person who supervises all of the maintenance in school. But I think in the American context, the janitor or someone who oversees the cleaning, but we usually had cleaning ladies for this in Scotland, for example, or I suppose you'd call them cleaners now, although it's usually women that do that job.
M: Yeah. So a janitor. Oh, mainly US or Scottish English. Okay. A person employed to take care of a large building such as a school. Yeah. And who deals with the cleaning, repairs, So UK they usually say a caretaker. So a caretaker. Yeah. So if you want to use some Scottish English, say a janitor. Or American English.
R: You could say a jannie. I haven't heard that word in about 25 years, my God.
M: And now you've used this word.
R: I'm so old.
M: As old as the hills. How old are you, Rory?
R: I'm pure ancient man.
M: You're ancient. Rory is ancient. As old as the pyramids. Although there is an opinion that pyramids are not that old.
R: They were built by aliens.
M: Yeah. And the Stonehenge, I can pronounce it well now, the Stonehenge was built by a giant. Okay.
R: It's always really annoying. When people say things like that, actually. I was speaking ironically, when we were talking about the pyramids, but actually, there's like a sort of element of racism in this kind of comment where people are like, oh, it couldn't possibly have been these primitive Africans, or these primitive people living in South America that build the pyramids. It must have been aliens. Do you not understand how racist that is? But then you have these academics saying, oh yes, primitives, no, couldn't have been them, must have been aliens. And you're like, oh, God, please stop.
M: And then we have the devil who creates things, giants and all the legends above devils and giants and Scottish ghosts.
R: It couldn't possibly have been human beings, you know, people who sent rockets to the moon and what have you. It must have been the aliens. Yes. Nothing problematic about that at all. That's the one thing like usually I'm not all for like finding racism in everything. But that's the one thing that I think is really racist.
M: Alright, dear listener, now, this is a very important piece of information that you now know. What to do with it, well, think about it. You should relisten to it, take notes. Artificial Intelligence. You can say AI. AI controls people, we rely on AI. Artificial Intelligence. Alright, Terminator, Arnold Schwarzenegger, rah rah.
R: That is not how artificial intelligence would take over the world.
M: Have you seen Terminator?
R: I have but it's just like it's a fun movie. It's not really...
M: It's possible.
R: It's not. Why? Why would a machine decide to wipe out human beings? Like there's absolutely no possible reason that would make any sense from a machines perspective.
M: You should rewatch Terminator.
R: Yes, the documentary Terminator. There's no reason why a machine would declare war on human beings. Seriously.
M: Dear listener, how are you? Are you with us? Or you've just decided to okay, I'm not listening anymore. Yeah, now, we're gonna give you this juicy vocabulary and gorgeous grammar. Okay, just listen to it, it'll probably have some sway over most complex aspects of life, wow. Sway over.
M: What did you mean by that?
R: Some control.
M: Control. So it will probably have some control over most complex aspects of life.
R: Although to be honest with you, sway is a bit more. It's a bit broader than control to have sway over something is like to have influence or like some sort of power. It's like control, but it's not as solid as control. But it's more than influence.
M: Okay, so we can say artificial intelligence will probably have some sway over most complex aspects of life. And you can talk about surgery. So artificial intelligence will be in surgery, plastic surgery, teaching, perhaps. And you've used this word mimic, to mimic people. So artificial intelligence can mimic people, right?
M: Mimic like parrots?
R: Oh, no, kind of. Parrots mimic people. It's a bit mindless, though. Mimicking is usually a bit more active and thought. Parrots just copy people and repeat what they say. They don't think about it.
M: Hmm. We can say that nowadays we're relying on machines. Machines - meaning, well, computers, artificial intelligence. We have, well, artificial intelligence everywhere, in our phones, on the roads.
R: You have complex algorithms that influence this, but an actual AI hasn't been designed yet. And you would know that. It's all algorithms which you program. AI isn't sophisticated enough to do stuff like that.
M: It's okay, we can relax now. Artificial intelligence is not sophisticated enough.
R: It's not.
M: It's not, okay, good. Good.
R: That's not how that works.
M: Good. So artificial intelligence can help us overcome this hurdle of life.
M: You said that this hurdle could be overcome. Wow. Hurdle, like a difficulty.
R: Like a barrier. We've talked about this before.
M: Hurdle. But now it's kind of a revision, dear listener, for you, right? So we've used it once. And then we were reusing it, recycling vocabulary.
R: For a high score.
M: For a band nine score.
R: You're welcome.
M: Oh, it's our pleasure. It's okay.
R: No, you're welcome.
M: Don't thank us. It's fine.
R: No, you should definitely thank us. In your acceptance speech for the Nobel Prize, please mention how Maria and I helped.
M: Oh, yeah. Okay, dear listener, you can now relisten to this episode again and again and take notes. Just, well, do as you please. Rory, do you ever listen to our episodes? Do you personally listen>
M: No. Okay. He doesn't
R: I'm busy. I have five jobs. I do not have time for this.
M: Only five? I thought seven.
R: No, we've cut down now.
M: Okay, good. Dear listener, thank you very much for listening!
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