How to be a well-rounded individual, intellectually speaking?

How the hell do I science?

Ok, I just took a "General Knowledge Test" on this site [] mostly for the fun of it. I ended up scoring in the bottom tier and the site responded, rather condescendingly, that there was "room for improvement". Did this stupid webpage just turn its nose up at me, as if I was some kind of unwashed serf? The nerve!

All kidding aside that did kinda piss me off, though. I am going to take that thing again someday and kick its freaking ass, but for now I must retreat to lick my wounds. I also want to train up and be a well-rounded individual in an intellectual sense. I am reading a lot more recently, but mostly stuff to do with skepticism and science, specifically nueroscience. Help me be better? Please suggest any and all advice for being more well-rounded. Suggest books, movies, documentaries, websites, articles, tasks and everything in-between. 

You can rebuild me! You have the technology!

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You probably know your own shortcomings best, so start patching up from there and rebuild yourself right away!

I've been working along the same lines for some decennia, and perhaps in twenty years more I'll begin to look like a well-rounded intellectual person. And I enjoyed all that time spent in educating myself enormously! I didn't get impressive certifications, I didn't graduate, but I lined the inside of my head with interesting things to look at, things that help and comfort me.

Have a good time rebuilding!

The Discovery Channel, and especially their Science Channel, are great for casual access to at least some of the sciences.  Books like Krauss' The Universe From Nothing and Dawkins' The Greatest Show on Earth are wonderful windows into cosmology and evolution as well.  Keep in mind, too, that you may not absorb it all on first reading, and that forcing yourself through it won't be helpful.

Take what you can, let what you don't quite get rest, then after a while, revisit it and see if your take on the material changes.  I mean, there won't be a test at the end of the period!

Not exactly forcing myself, but I see your point. After becoming an atheist I decided to pay a bit more attention to certain things. I started reading up on stuff that people are generally misinformed about, because I was sure it was not just religion lying to me. I got into social issues and why they ACTUALLY matter. I recently read "Bad Science" and am now educating myself as much as I can regarding supplements and pharmacueticals so I can help my mother who, far from being an idiot, is VERY much a common product of the Oprah Show [You know what that means]. I read the God Delusion, I read the Demon Haunted World, I read stuff about various sciences. I am watching more documentaries than movies these days. All in all I feel as if I am getting far more educated just since I decided to stop believing in christ last year. It felt great! Then I took that god-damn test lol

I enjoy Sam Harris and Daniel Dennetts writings.  They don't seem (to me) to be as heavy reading as some of Dawkins works.  'Letter to a Christian Nation' by Harris is one of my all time favorites.

there is a logic test, in two parts, and a general knowledge test. I got [14/15] for test 1 and [12/15] for test 2. My logic is pretty ok, I guess. the other test killed me, though :P

Hmm... I wouldn't be too concerned about a "logic" test that has questions like:

) Men are from Mars.
b) Women are from Venus.

Therefore men and women will never understand each other.

13/15 or 87% for Test 1

lol, I actually enjoyed that. Formal logic is a fun thing to think through. It also helps you argue better. Besides this test was only concerned with structural validity, not soundness of argument. And, again, the logic test did not bother me. The general knowledge test did.

The second test killed me, too. I see yesterday's post did not show. I scored 10/15 on the second test. It was much tougher.

Personally, I appreciate true logic problems, the ones you buy in games magazines. Now those are a real challenge, and they are fun.

14/15 on the first logic test, 13/15 on the second.  I can't get a result to post on the GKQ, but I knew most of the answers--all, aside from the questions on population density and religious adherents.


Why not?  It's good to know that not all invalid arguments are on Fox.

93 on the first logic test, 87 on the second.  Couldn't get a score to register on the general knowledge, but I knew most of the answers.


15/15 on both logic tests here. There were lots of arguments with funny false premises, or with true conclusions despite invalid arguments!

(If it were true that all birds are animals, all animals are eukaryotes, and all eukaryotes are bacteria, then it would necessarily be true that all birds are bacteria.)

No clue on most of the pseudonyms. I'll look at the general knowledge test later. :-)




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