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Are High-IQ People More Likely to Use Drugs?

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In 1884, a young researcher named Sigmund Freud was studying the mysteries of the human brain when he wrote an article about cocaine. The scientist extolled its benefits in a paper, “Über Coca,” chronicling how he felt when he used the drug. For the next 12 years, Freud habitually used cocaine as he wrote some of his most influential works, including his theories about the Oedipus complex, psychoanalysis, and the unconscious mind.

Many people think that Freud was abnormal. Conventional wisdom implies that smarter people are less likely to use drugs. But a study from Cardiff University in Wales found that people with higher IQs are more likely to indulge in illegal drugs than people of average or lower intelligence.

Researchers surveyed 7,900 British people born in April 1970.

At age 5 and 10, researchers measured their IQs and at 16 and 30, the researchers asked them to fill out surveys about psychological problems and drug use. By age 30, 35% of men and 16% of women admitted to smoking pot at least once in the past year, while 9% of men and 4% of women indulged in cocaine. People who copped to doing drugs also scored higher on IQ tests than those who did not partake.

Women in the top third of IQ scores were five times more likely to have used marijuana or cocaine than those ladies in the bottom third. Men with the highest IQs were almost 50% more likely to use amphetamines and 65% more likely to have used ecstasy.

Lead researcher, James White, provides several theories explaining why smarter people might indulge in drug use more frequently. He says that anti-drug campaigns often provide simple messages that might not appeal to smarter children. Also, bright people may experience more boredom and social isolation than their less intelligent peers. However, he thinks that attitudes might account for the differences:

"The likely mechanism is openness to experience," White told Time.com, "and, I think, it's also this idea of having an educated view of risk as well."

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Opening Ceremony
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These $425 Jeans Can Turn Into Jorts
May 19, 2017
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Opening Ceremony

Modular clothing used to consist of something simple, like a reversible jacket. Today, it’s a $425 pair of detachable jeans.

Apparel retailer Opening Ceremony recently debuted a pair of “2 in 1 Y/Project” trousers that look fairly peculiar. The legs are held to the crotch by a pair of loops, creating a disjointed C-3PO effect. Undo the loops and you can now remove the legs entirely, leaving a pair of jean shorts in their wake. The result goes from this:

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Opening Ceremony

To this:

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Opening Ceremony

The company also offers a slightly different cut with button tabs in black for $460. If these aren’t audacious enough for you, the Y/Project line includes jumpsuits with removable legs and garter-equipped jeans.

[h/t Mashable]

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This First-Grade Math Problem Is Stumping the Internet
May 17, 2017
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If you’ve ever fantasized about how much easier life would be if you could go back to elementary school, this math problem may give you second thoughts. The question first appeared on a web forum, Mashable reports, and after recently resurfacing, it’s been perplexing adults across social media.

According to the original poster AlmondShell, the bonus question was given to primary one, or first grade students, in Singapore. It instructs readers to “study the number pattern” and “fill in the missing numbers.” The puzzle, which comprises five numbers and four empty circles waiting to be filled in, comes with no further explanation.

Some forum members commented with their best guesses, while others expressed disbelief that this was a question on a kid’s exam. Commenter karrotguy illustrates one possible answer: Instead of looking for complex math equations, they saw that the figure in the middle circle (three) equals the amount of double-digit numbers in the surrounding quadrants (18, 10, 12). They filled out the puzzle accordingly.

A similar problem can be found on the blog of math enthusiast G.R. Burgin. His solution, which uses simple algebra, gets a little more complicated.

The math tests given to 6- and 7-year-olds in other parts of the world aren’t much easier. If your brain isn’t too worn out after the last one, check out this maddening problem involving trains assigned to students in the UK.

[h/t Mashable]

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