More than anything else, I have noticed that extraordinarily high intelligence is characterized by the ability to sort out important information from distractors. According to my model for post-140 IQ, this indicates discernment- the ability to quickly recognize and categorize abstract ideas with the perceptual faculties. The archetypal example is when a person “sees” a Ponzi scheme and begins to react to this realization emotionally before it even enters their conscious mind.
If a person has already built up all of these complex instincts as a sort of “crystallized intuition”, this indicates a high rate of complex instinct creation (“fluid intuition”) over time. Like healthy white matter production, this trait “discernment” ought to be considered a necessary but insufficient condition for the phenomenon of genius.
The sensual experience of exercising this facility is one of feeling your focus “drawn” to a specific piece of information and developing a temporary monomania until the tension is resolved. For instance, at the scene of a murder a sensible detective will be drawn to investigate the smoking gun first.
Crafting questions which test this ability appears to be a trivial extension: to provide lots of distracting information in the question. I think that the “Similarities” subtests actually do a pretty good job of measuring fluid intuition. Ex: What is the similarity between a dog and a table? When you try to answer this, you can’t do it by reasoning verbally. You have to call up the concept images and just stare at them in your mind’s eye until the answer pops out at you. Other sorts of questions which do this very well are trick questions and riddles.
The answer, by the by, is that they both dogs and tables have legs.
Clever sillies are not comfortable with this sort of cognition. Sadly, many of my aspie kin fall into this category, because we have a strong positive attraction to strict logical thinking which tends to override good sense. Thus, clever sillies do not take riddles, trick questions, or even matters of taste seriously. They believe that it doesn’t matter whether a person obtains the correct answer for such a question because they can’t be blamed for getting it wrong. How can you be blamed if there are no rules?
If they were allowed to apply this attitude to serious questions, like a business or policy decision, it would lead to heartache because determining which information is salient to the situation is the most important part. Thus, riddles have a storied history of sorting out the wise from the merely bright. I believe riddles test for crystallized intuition because they tend to rely heavily on accumulated experience, whereas trick questions are in between riddles and Similarities. Generally you want more fluid intuition in a scientist and more crystallized intuition in a statesman, but they have a tendency to run together.
One caveat- a lot of the trick questions I’m seeing on Google are actually just stupid jokes in disguise. Here’s a good example though: “One house is made out of red bricks, one house is made of blue bricks, one is made of yellow bricks, and one house is made of purple bricks. What is a greenhouse made out of?”
In conclusion, I think this could be formalized so as to properly distinguish high functioning in the two cognitive modes. Once this is achieved, I believe it may be possible to create IQ tests with a ceiling above 160. However, there is a complication in that testing this function is easily confused with “creativity”, so I will try to disambiguate them in the future when I describe how genius works. Also, it is very easy to recall the answers to such questions if you’ve already seen them, so that needs to be accounted for.
(The answer to that last question was glass. In this question, the salient bit of information was the word “greenhouse” and the rest was distraction.)