UPDATE: IT HAS SINCE EMERGED THAT THE STORY, AND COMPANY, WERE A FAKE
A consulting firm called AptiQuant has run some IQ surveys across 100,000 people. Pretty useful – though I’ve always found that websites that try and work out my IQ seem to get confused and give me really low scores (on the last one I get 160). This company ran the survey, but to be useful, also collected data on which browser the participants were using. The result was that users using Internet Explorer tended to have a lower IQ than those using better browsers, such as Chrome, Safari, Opera, Firefox and a browser based on Firefox called Camino. Opera and Camino users tended to have above average (>100) IQs whilst the other browsers’ users were generally average (100).
Reading through the article on BBC News – currently the second most read article – the firm suggests that rather than Internet Explorer actually lowering people’s IQ it was just that people with lower IQs tended to be using Internet Explorer in the first place. But what if it was the other way round, and IE did actually lower people’s IQs:
- The slow browsing experience means that there is less time to look up new interesting things
- The number of ads for better browsers confuses the audience and so lowers their IQ
- The already low IQs mean that people don’t understand they need to download a better browser