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I do not agree that science has found objective ways to measure creativity, imagination, and intelligence. The data gathered is objective but what is being measured may have little or no relevance to the stated goals of the research. Lie detectors, IQ tests, puzzle boxes only measure what the design of the test measures--GSR, speed with which a puzzle is solved, answers to test questions,etc.

I also, for similar reasons, dispute your analogy between engineering and music--we are talking apples vs. oranges here--there is no similarity between good engineering and musical composition. A bridge is either well-engineered and will not fall into the gorge or it will. A musical composition will be interpreted, evaluated, liked, disliked in many different ways by many individuals.
That’s silly. That’s like saying science has not found objective ways to measure someone’s health just because an EKG only measures your heart rate.

The context I was using should have been obvious to anyone who isn’t deliberately being obtuse that I am not making a literal comparison--as if I’m saying that music builds an actual bridge to drive on. As was obvious, the analogy refers to principles of design and craftmanship that are common to both fields, such as efficient use of resources being a better hallmark of design—in engineering, if one design can do the same exact thing as another but by simpler, more efficient means, then it is a sign of higher craftmanship, etc. Similar things are said in music.
 

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Post by Strange Magic:--"A bridge is either well-engineered and will not fall into the gorge or it will. A musical composition will be interpreted, evaluated, liked, disliked in many different ways by many individuals."


Incorrect. A bridge can be evaluated as well, regardless of whether it falls in a gorge or not. For example, if there is one bridge that efficiently goes straight across the gorge and immediately joins the other side, then it can be evaluated against another bridge that zigzags back and forth, up and down for no reason, aimlessly, then darts sideways across the gorge to the other side in all sorts of complex, wasteful means, even though it still doesn’t fall into the gorge either.

And music can “fall into a gorge” and therefore be poorly crafted whether an individual likes the style or not. Such as writing an A below the staff in an Oboe piece. In CPT, and unless any logical reason indicating otherwise, we can rationally conclude poor craftmanship in composition by writing that sort of unplayable music. Or pppp dynamics for the lowest Bb in an Oboe piece. Straight into the gorge. There are many examples.
 

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Big claims. At least I assume by "quantifying... intelligence" you mean IQ, so sure, to whatever extent we can say IQ correlates to intelligence. The rest I'd like to see evidence for.
So, you cannot think of any objective way at all, none whatsoever, of telling the difference between writing notes down completely randomly with no thought process behind them and by writing them down through intelligent means with purpose, design, and craftmanship? The two ways are indecipherable? You really can’t tell the difference? Strange, that.
 

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Originally posted by Eva Yojimbo:--"They are perfectly credible judges as to how a fugue makes someone who doesn't know what a fugue is makes them feel."


That is not what we are talking about. At least me. The problem through these entire discussions is as follows: there is a huge difference between 1) CRAFT and 2) STYLE/AESTHETICS. You are confusing the two and using them interchangeably.

You are talking about style and aesthetics, which doesn’t always even pertain to art, really. Take aesthetics. A sunset or a flower is not designed or created by anyone, but is still “moving”, “pleasing to the eye”, “aesthetically satisfying”, etc.

And look at musical performance (as opposed to composition). There is CRAFT and there is STYLE (and aesthetics). I am a professional tubist, for example. There is one, and only one, correct and proper way to physically play the tuba. This is CRAFT. That is not up for debate. However, when myself, or Gene Pokorny, or Warren Deck, are to perform the tuba solo from Mahler’s First, we can STYLE the music aesthetically different to suit our own (or the conductor’s) purpose. And that IS up for debate, and is open to make people feel however you want, like or dislike. But we all go by the same principles of CRAFT. Same with singers, etc. What have you. This goes for composition too.
 

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Originally posted by Eva Yojimbo:--"You may then ask "'why should we care about what someone who doesn't know what a fugue is thinks about a fugue?'"


If they know absolutely nothing about the CRAFT of composition, then their opinion of it means absolutely nothing. Nada. They can’t even give an opinion about it, so it doesn’t matter anyway. If the style or aesthetics doesn’t move them, fine. Experts who judge music, judge it by the objective standards involving craftmanship. I, myself may not like a certain composer or composition by a certain composer because I do not like its style or aesthetics, but that does not mean I do not recognize its merits in craftmanship that I can objectively see are there and are recognized by others, many of whom are more informed on such matters than myself.
 

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Originally posted by Eva Yojimbo:--"The simple response is thus: if the argument is that music is one of the arts that is capable of bypassing our intellectual barriers and reaching straight into and affecting our emotions and aesthetic responses then any music that's capable of doing that should be able to do that for anyone regardless of their knowledge or ignorance of any of the music's technical qualities."


The thing is though, which you should recognize, is that many people find music which is intellectual, logical, and intelligently written makes them happy and will get an emotional response from those features.
 

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Originally posted by Eva Yojimbo:--"The problem is you (like so many) are wanting to talk about judging what a fugue is based on some intellectual, theoretical ideal that completely divorces it from what, IMO, music's core purpose should be, which is the stirring of emotions and aesthetic responses. If a fugue is capable of doing that, then it's a "good fugue," if a fugue isn't capable of doing that, then it's a "bad fugue." As I said elsewhere, if I wanted to appreciate a fugue for its "inexorable logic" I'd rather go study great chess games. That's not what I value in music, nor is it for most people."


Strawman. This isn’t a problem. Nor is anyone SOLELY doing this. This is all anyone can do when judging musical craftmanship, and not style and aesthetics. If you want to talk style and aesthetics, we can sit here all day.
 

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Originally posted by Eva Yojimbo:--"As I said elsewhere, if I wanted to appreciate a fugue for its "inexorable logic" I'd rather go study great chess games."


Not me. I want to study fugues for their logic, so I study fugues. They move me for that reason among many others.
 

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Originally posted by Eva Yojimbo:--"Music is different than literature. All of literature's emotional, dramatic, and aesthetic impact requires as a prerequisite the intellectual understanding of the language it's written in. Music isn't like this. People can delight in sound and patterns of sound and all its aesthetic, dramatic, tonal, etc. potential without understanding one iota of theory."


Not so fast. Understanding a language and understanding theory are two different things, not interchangeable as you are doing here. Just because someone understands the words of Joyce, does not mean they understand the theory of how Ulysses was written and the merits of its craftmanship. And I highly doubt the native people of Indonesia would get the same emotional, dramatic, and aesthetic impact out of Mozart as they do from gamelan music and vice versa (European vs. gamelan). There is a certain degree of exposure/understanding (given that musical vocabularies often reflect the sounds and patterns of the language of the culture in which it is from) necessary to levels of appreciation.
 

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So, you cannot think of any objective way at all, none whatsoever, of telling the difference between writing notes down completely randomly with no thought process behind them and by writing them down through intelligent means with purpose, design, and craftmanship? The two ways are indecipherable? You really can’t tell the difference? Strange, that.
If you're proposing that there are hard, objective methods with which we can identify and quantify(!) creativity, intelligence and imagination in music, I think the onus is on you to prove that.
 

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Just because you’re not sure, doesn’t mean everyone else is too.
A paper in the peer-reviewed journal Frontiers in Artificial Intelligence and Applications cites approximately 70 definitions of "intelligence". Whether or not intelligence can be specifically defined, or meaningfully quantified is the subject of significant research and discussion.
 

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A paper in the peer-reviewed journal Frontiers in Artificial Intelligence and Applications cites approximately 70 definitions of "intelligence". Whether or not intelligence can be specifically defined, or meaningfully quantified is the subject of significant research and discussion.
There will always be ‘significant research and discussion’ about many aspects of the functioning of the human brain including intelligence. When it comes to the present level of the evaluation of the latter, what are you looking for, perfection? And if it doesn’t rise to the level of perfection you expect, do you think what we know about it is insignificant?
 

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There will always be ‘significant research and discussion’ about many aspects of the functioning of the human brain including intelligence. When it comes to the present level of the evaluation of the latter, what are you looking for, perfection? And if it doesn’t rise to the level of perfection you expect, do you think what we know about it is insignificant?
If it's argued that a) there exist hard, quantifiable ways to measure intelligence in science and b) these methods are applicable to music, I think it's reasonable to ask which quantifiable methods we're talking about here.

It should be relatively obvious, for instance, that IQ, the result of a subject taking a standardized test, can not be reasonably applied to works of art.
 

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Torkelburger:
"That’s silly. That’s like saying science has not found objective ways to measure someone’s health just because an EKG only measures your heart rate.

The context I was using should have been obvious to anyone who isn’t deliberately being obtuse that I am not making a literal comparison."
Glad to see you're up and about. Your objection to my and others' statements that measuring devices and tests only tell one about that which is specifically being measured is, of course, obviously silly.. The assessment of health relies upon many tests and medical histories, all combined together, along with luck, to form a picture of health. IQ as has been pointed out, is another matter entirely, and tells us--as it is so variously defined--very little compared to assessments of general health. And general (good) health itself varies with age, sex, ethnicity. My health is lousy for a 20-year-old, but amazingly good for my age and with three heart conditions.

To avoid others having the opportunity to be deliberately obtuse, don't give them the opportunity; rigorously define the context.
 

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@Torkelburger, I appreciate your replies but I'm not sure if or how long I will be able to maintain this discussion. Replying to posts in the "Profundity Revisited" thread is already taking up most of the time I have to spend online. I will, at the very least, make one assail at this initial volley of replies.

So, you cannot think of any objective way at all, none whatsoever, of telling the difference between writing notes down completely randomly with no thought process behind them and by writing them down through intelligent means with purpose, design, and craftmanship? The two ways are indecipherable? You really can’t tell the difference? Strange, that.
I'm not sure what this has to do with the post your responded to; but, sure, there is certainly, at least most of the time, a discernible difference between writing music randomly and doing so with purpose and design. I can't fathom what this had to do with a quote about IQ tests, though...

Originally posted by Eva Yojimbo:--"They are perfectly credible judges as to how a fugue makes someone who doesn't know what a fugue is makes them feel."

That is not what we are talking about. At least me. The problem through these entire discussions is as follows: there is a huge difference between 1) CRAFT and 2) STYLE/AESTHETICS. You are confusing the two and using them interchangeably.

You are talking about style and aesthetics, which doesn’t always even pertain to art, really. Take aesthetics. A sunset or a flower is not designed or created by anyone, but is still “moving”, “pleasing to the eye”, “aesthetically satisfying”, etc.

And look at musical performance (as opposed to composition). There is CRAFT and there is STYLE (and aesthetics). I am a professional tubist, for example. There is one, and only one, correct and proper way to physically play the tuba. This is CRAFT. That is not up for debate. However, when myself, or Gene Pokorny, or Warren Deck, are to perform the tuba solo from Mahler’s First, we can STYLE the music aesthetically different to suit our own (or the conductor’s) purpose. And that IS up for debate, and is open to make people feel however you want, like or dislike. But we all go by the same principles of CRAFT. Same with singers, etc. What have you. This goes for composition too.
I don't think I'm confusing the two at all, and I'm certainly not sure how you got from that bit of my post you quoted that I'm mixing them up. I generally agree with the distinction you make between craft and style, though when you describe the way of playing a Tuba I'd be more inclined to label that technique than craft, but that's a minor point. I'm also not sure how this relates to composition since the end-goal of composition is, by whatever craft or technique, to make music that people judge as aesthetically valuable, and history has shown there are millions of different forms of craft and techniques capable of generating even more aesthetic styles that people respond to as being aesthetically valuable; and the value of any craft or technique producing any aesthetic is only valid within the group of the people that value that aesthetic. To make a concrete example, the technique and craft of singing is very different in opera than it is in most other genres whose aesthetic goals are different from those of opera.

If they know absolutely nothing about the CRAFT of composition, then their opinion of it means absolutely nothing. Nada. They can’t even give an opinion about it, so it doesn’t matter anyway. If the style or aesthetics doesn’t move them, fine. Experts who judge music, judge it by the objective standards involving craftmanship. I, myself may not like a certain composer or composition by a certain composer because I do not like its style or aesthetics, but that does not mean I do not recognize its merits in craftmanship that I can objectively see are there and are recognized by others, many of whom are more informed on such matters than myself.
Their opinion might not mean anything as it relates to the craft, but it means plenty as it relates to how the aesthetics of that craft affect someone who is ignorant of that craft. Before you say this is meaningless too, please consider that most all music and all art are not created by professionals for other professionals, but by professionals for a laymen audience. The notion that laymen's opinions don't count is contradicted by the fact of whom the vast majority of artists have always created art for, including most of the great composers. I also reject the idea that musicians objectively judge music by "standards of craftsmanship," as if they aren't biased and possess personal aesthetic tastes like everyone else. Musicians may incorporate concerns of craft into their judgment in a way that laymen audience's don't, but to act as if that's all they care about in terms of aesthetic evaluations is simply false. Also, even the choice of choosing to judge music (or any art) on "the standards of craft" is a subjective choice, as is the choice of WHICH standards of craft to choose, as if there was only one.

Originally posted by Eva Yojimbo:--"The simple response is thus: if the argument is that music is one of the arts that is capable of bypassing our intellectual barriers and reaching straight into and affecting our emotions and aesthetic responses then any music that's capable of doing that should be able to do that for anyone regardless of their knowledge or ignorance of any of the music's technical qualities."

The thing is though, which you should recognize, is that many people find music which is intellectual, logical, and intelligently written makes them happy and will get an emotional response from those features.
I agree.

Originally posted by Eva Yojimbo:--"Music is different than literature. All of literature's emotional, dramatic, and aesthetic impact requires as a prerequisite the intellectual understanding of the language it's written in. Music isn't like this. People can delight in sound and patterns of sound and all its aesthetic, dramatic, tonal, etc. potential without understanding one iota of theory."

Not so fast. Understanding a language and understanding theory are two different things, not interchangeable as you are doing here. Just because someone understands the words of Joyce, does not mean they understand the theory of how Ulysses was written and the merits of its craftmanship. And I highly doubt the native people of Indonesia would get the same emotional, dramatic, and aesthetic impact out of Mozart as they do from gamelan music and vice versa (European vs. gamelan). There is a certain degree of exposure/understanding (given that musical vocabularies often reflect the sounds and patterns of the language of the culture in which it is from) necessary to levels of appreciation.
IIRC, someone else made the comparison of someone judging literature when not understanding the language it was written in, which prompted that response. I agree understanding a language and understanding the craft of literature is also different things, but that wasn't what the post I was responding to was about. I basically agree with what you're saying here.
 

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IQ as has been pointed out, is another matter entirely, and tells us--as it is so variously defined--very little compared to assessments of general health.
I'm rather ambivalent about IQ. On the one hand, I don't think it captures everything there is to know about intelligence; on the other hand, IQ correlates extremely well with a number of positive life outcomes, including those we generally judge intelligence by: GPA, income, life expectancy, professional aptitude, etc. Using myself as an example, I was apparently weird enough as a child that I was given a variety of tests, including an IQ test, after which my parents started making a big fuss about expecting much from me because of it. I couldn't have been less interested at the time, living as I did in my own imaginative world and only caring about whatever I cared about at time; but in retrospect I have to think my IQ played a big part in why I was able to, for example, pick up the game of poker (and the underlying math/theory) so well and so easily that I was able to make a profession out of it for years. At the time I took for granted that I could very easily mentally process the kind of math the game involves that many others can not. So whether or not IQ captures everything there is to know about intelligence I certainly think it captures something about human cognition that suggests certain people will have a much easier time with a variety of challenges in life that requires rational thought and problem solving to navigate and overcome. I also worry about much of what Jordan Peterson says here about society perhaps becoming too complex for people with low IQs, which amounts to 10% of the population.
 

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^^^^@Eva Yojimbo: I can agree with almost all you post here, but my chief concern is that IQ, however defined and tested for, not be used to close doors of possibility to whole swathes of young people. Some just don't test well for several reasons but later can flower into high-achieving adults.
 

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If they know absolutely nothing about the CRAFT of composition, then their opinion of it means absolutely nothing. Nada. They can’t even give an opinion about it, so it doesn’t matter anyway. If the style or aesthetics doesn’t move them, fine. Experts who judge music, judge it by the objective standards involving craftmanship. I, myself may not like a certain composer or composition by a certain composer because I do not like its style or aesthetics, but that does not mean I do not recognize its merits in craftmanship that I can objectively see are there and are recognized by others, many of whom are more informed on such matters than myself.
I think judging the craftsmanship of music is significantly easier than talking of proper aesthetic judgments (where neither might be subjective contra a widely held opinion). That is simply because we follow certain rules of compositional writing when we make judgments about its craft. Someone might be able to write excellent fugues, and we can recognise that (and an expert might recognise that even better!), but this does not mean that an expert is uninterested in the aesthetics. What is a good fugue worth, if it is not backed up by proper aesthetic choices?

So I think that, ultimately, while you are right that craft can be easily judged, such judgments would be relatively useless when separated from aesthetics. I deeply doubt that experts who judge music do not care for aesthetics. Similarly, an artist might have excellent technical skills of painting but when they use them to paint something disgusting, those skills hardly amount to anything of value. Sure, an expert might recognise those technical skills but I hardly see what help that would be. For this very reason, I also think it's rather questionable to think that an aesthetic judgement of someone who has no knowledge of the craft is useless or means absolutely nothing (it certainly means something!). I mean, useless for what? What is the use even supposed to be? (I don't think we ever think we are doing something particularly useful when we make an aesthetic judgement--rather, we simply express something and that need seems to have to do with human nature, not with anything pragmatic.) An expert opinion about the craft is not going to overturn someone's aesthetic judgment and the latter is, in the end, important.
 

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^^^^@annaw: A fine example of the disconnect of craft and esthetic judgement is that of the painter Ingres and several later Academy painters who painted kitsch in exquisite detail. There are instances in music of skilled composers also writing boring music--too long, dull, generic, pedestrian, or indecipherable as music.
 
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