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Who do you think is more intelligent : Hawking or Tesla?

  1. Oct 30, 2014 #1
    Ok, I admit i am comparing apples to oranges - cosmologist to engineer. But if you were to choose one based on intelligence, who would it be? If you regard neither of these two men as the most intelligent man who has ever lived, who do you regard as such?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 30, 2014 #2

    Bandersnatch

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    Intelligence criterion poorly defined. Body of data insufficient. Range of solutions arbitrary.
    Example follows:
     
  4. Oct 30, 2014 #3

    Vanadium 50

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    Who is stronger? Superman or the Hulk?

    These threads never go anywhere.
     
  5. Oct 30, 2014 #4
    Obviously Batman.
     
  6. Oct 30, 2014 #5

    ZapperZ

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    I agree with Vanadium. This is an utterly pointless topic. You might as well have a beauty contest.

    Zz.
     
  7. Oct 30, 2014 #6
    A concept I first ran across somewhere in the writings of Henry Miller is that the greatest men are always anonymous. We'll never know the most intelligent person who has ever lived because they would have had the intelligence to stay out of the history books. I would also like to point out that Superman was more intelligent than the Hulk, but it's not clear that he was more intelligent than Batman.
     
  8. Oct 30, 2014 #7

    jedishrfu

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    There is a Chinese parable about three brothers who are all doctors. The most famous is the youngest brother for his skill of healing even the most deadly of diseases and when people ask about it. He says his fame is because his skill is inferior to his brothers saying:

    My oldest brother's knowledge is so great that he can can vanquish disease before it occurs and my older brother can cure disease in its earliest stages whereas I must deal with diseases when they are most serious.
     
  9. Oct 30, 2014 #8

    Ryan_m_b

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    I have to agree with everyone else here that discussions like this are pointless. To expand on why: intelligence is not great metric at all. It's not one characteristic but, I would argue, a reification of a range of different abilities. IMO it's ultimately pointless trying to judge and compare someone's intelligence versus their capability at a relevant subject.
     
  10. Oct 30, 2014 #9
    annoyinggirl asks an annoying question...

    Someone should really do a write-up dispelling the Tesla myth. Fact is Tesla was his own biggest promoter and he really isn't that significant of a figure. Toward the end of his life he became a total kook and recluse and died alone living in a Hotel. He's not even worth mentioning in the same breath as the great Physicists of his era.
     
  11. Oct 30, 2014 #10

    phinds

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    +1 on that !
     
  12. Oct 30, 2014 #11

    RonL

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    I suspect Tesla would not have lasted for a "New York Minute" on PF, but looking past his personality, his accomplishments ( documented ) show a very brilliant man. IMHO Tesla is not a myth.
    Does Howard Hughes fall in your list of overrated people ? just curious :)
     
  13. Oct 30, 2014 #12

    russ_watters

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    There are two Teslas:
    -The Tesla who was a real person and a reasonably successful inventor -- having one big, successful invention -- is rarely ever discussed on the internet that I've seen.
    -The Tesla people bring up is the mythical mad scientist who had tons of great but never fully realized inventions, because, conspiracy theory, conspiracy theory.

    Given that the OP believes Tesla was one of the most intelligent people ever to exist, she most definitely is talking about Tesla, the mythical mad scientist, not Tesla, the real person.
    No. Mostly because Hughes was much more accomplished than Tesla.
     
  14. Oct 30, 2014 #13

    russ_watters

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    There may not be a right answer to that question, but there couldn't be one more wrong! Batman has no superpowers!
     
  15. Oct 30, 2014 #14

    Drakkith

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    Einstein. Ladies can't resist that hair.
     
  16. Oct 30, 2014 #15

    davenn

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    L
    LOL, good point :)
     
  17. Oct 30, 2014 #16

    Drakkith

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    Tesla was primarily an engineer, not a physicist, so of course you can't compare him to physicists of his era. It's important to distinguish between Tesla's contributions from his inventions, and the overblown status many people give him today. He was obviously a brilliant engineer and inventor, but he definitely wasn't a proverbial "god" who invented new physics that was squashed by the government and all that other conspiracy nonsense.
     
  18. Oct 30, 2014 #17
    My vote goes to mad Tesla, than to Superman. Hawking who?
     
  19. Oct 30, 2014 #18

    mfb

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    Feynman not mentioned yet? :( "the most intelligent" is impossible to find out or even define, but some certainly belong in the top group.
     
  20. Oct 30, 2014 #19

    Danger

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    Again, stupid question/stupid answer situation (no offense: see my half full/half empty thread for details).
    It's obvious that Hawking is more intelligent than Tesla. Telsa's brain hasn't worked since 1943. :rolleyes:
     
  21. Oct 30, 2014 #20

    jedishrfu

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    You're all wrong it's Archimedes...
     
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