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  1. #61
    now! in shell form INA's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jennifer View Post
    No, I'm talking at the very least about SAT scores, but there have been more specialized tests done in those areas.

    You are completely correct that the "linguistic test" on the BBC gender exam was pretty thin. It was probably the lamest test in the whole bunch; at least the spatial test did test the mental ability to spin 3d objects around accurately.
    I'd be interested to see if they had a linguistic test that takes in larger aspects of language than just or largely vocab. Perhaps they have an explanation for why men so dominate the field of linguistics given women's natural advantage.
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  2. #62
    @.~*virinaĉo*~.@ Totenkindly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by INA View Post
    I'd be interested to see if they had a linguistic test that takes in larger aspects of language than just or largely vocab. Perhaps they have an explanation for why men so dominate the field of linguistics given women's alleged natural advantage.
    Actually, I think what we see typically is that men tend to be at the extremes and women are more within the bell curve. Specific individuals of either gender can excel, but in terms of pure percentage, the very top and very bottom seems overpopulated with men. You see this in fields as diverse as math, music, cooking, whatever else.

    Same thing goes for autistics too, I think. More likely for them to be male. Very sharp processing coupled by a detach from social cues / other types of processing.

    I can't quite say why that is, although women do typically have a stronger connection between the hemispheres in their brain -- there's more cross talk -- and the balance of white vs gray matter is different. Women seem better able to withstand certain types of brain damage as well.

    As an analogy that might or might not be true, consider specialists vs generalists, with male = specialist and female = generalist here. The generalists are more adaptable yet don't advance as far in order to stay adapatable; but the specialists tend to be the experts in their field but might pay for it elsewhere.

    And maybe biological instincts play into things too, in terms of where a person's energies get channeled. (Either spread out into other people, or channeled into a particular field of inquiry.)
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

  3. #63
    Nips away your dignity Fluffywolf's Avatar
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    Everyway I look at it, my index finger and ring finger are of exact same size. The only difference is that my index finger is a bit more pointy and my ring finger a bit more blunt. And my index finger first 'digit' is longer than my ring fingers and the middle digit shorter than my ring fingers.

    Oh, and I have a ring on my ring finger. Noticable difference there..

    So my ratio is I suppose 1.

    Better linguistic ability
    Lower fertility
    More prevalence of early heart attack
    Dunno bout mah linguisticaliteh. I r pretty noob.
    Never tested my fertility.
    I'm worried about the more prevalence of an early heart attack though. So far I've been physically fine, I think. Let's hope I stay that way. :P
    ~Self-depricating Megalomaniacal Superwolf

  4. #64
    meh Salomé's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jennifer View Post
    That's funny... the majority of my fingers are straight, but my index finger on both hands noticeably curls/twists a bit too.

    I haven't seen fingers as twisty as JB's before. I wonder what that means.
    It means we're freeeeeaakeh!
    If I hold my two index fingers side by side, the space between them at the top forms a distinct V. If I grow my nails long they go curly too.
    I assume it's caused by asymmetrical growth - curving is generally caused by one side growing faster than the other.
    Basically, we are mutants.

    Quote Originally Posted by INA View Post
    +1, though I'm skeptical about the supposed correlations, e.g., masculinity and poorer linguistic ability. How are they measuring these?
    You just got it all, babe.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jennifer View Post
    Actually, I think what we see typically is that men tend to be at the extremes and women are more within the bell curve. Specific individuals of either gender can excel, but in terms of pure percentage, the very top and very bottom seems overpopulated with men. You see this in fields as diverse as math, music, cooking, whatever else.

    Same thing goes for autistics too, I think. More likely for them to be male. Very sharp processing coupled by a detach from social cues / other types of processing.

    I can't quite say why that is, although women do typically have a stronger connection between the hemispheres in their brain -- there's more cross talk -- and the balance of white vs gray matter is different. Women seem better able to withstand certain types of brain damage as well.

    As an analogy that might or might not be true, consider specialists vs generalists, with male = specialist and female = generalist here. The generalists are more adaptable yet don't advance as far in order to stay adapatable; but the specialists tend to be the experts in their field but might pay for it elsewhere.
    All of which is explained by the theory that pre-natal androgens inhibit the development of the left hemisphere, causing the right hemisphere to become more dominant.
    Right hemisphere = visuospatial skills, math, music, stuff.
    Also causes greater specialization / lateralization (this effect is compounded for men in puberty when testosterone destroys more of the connectivity within the brain).
    The default (female) brain (i.e. one that hasn't been fucked up by androgens) is better connected and more resilient, and more of a generalist - so we see, for example, emotion and language processing throughout both hemispheres, whereas in men, emotion processing is right-hemisphere and language left - sometimes offered as an explanation for why men find it difficult to talk about feewings.
    The finger thing is a proven marker for prenatal androgens, which of course, can't be measured after birth (there is no correlation with circulating testosterone).
    There are a number of reasons why girls' brains (and digits) get "masculinized" such that they end up with more of a "male" brain (otherwise known as Tness).

    I'm sure I've posted this stuff before:
    Sex and lateralisation Where the gender debate first arose, was from claims about differences between men and women in the way they use the two halves of the cortex.
    The original hypothesis was that men used their logical left side while women used the emotional irrational right side. However, the argument soon arose that, if language was a function of the left side, how was it that women were better at expressing themselves verbally?
    This is rather a simplistic view of the controversy, however, the theory was modified to suggest men have greater lateralisation, that their abilities are more compartmentalised, while, in women utilisation of the two halves is more diffuse.
    From the sixties onward, Landsell was working with people who had damage to one side of the cortex or the other. The knowledge of the time indicated that damage to the left hemisphere should lead to deficits in verbal tasks, while right-side damage should produce deficits in visuospatial tasks. This proved particularly true for men, but the prediction was not borne out well for women. It led him to speculate that the abilities of the two hemispheres overlapped to an extent.
    Electroencephalogram measurements have also shown a difference. When given abstract problems to work out, men showed a great deal of activity in the right side of their brain, while for women the activity was more generalised to both sides. Similar studies with teenage boys and girls gave similar results.
    With women who had Turner's syndrome, which comes about because they have only one X chromosome, XO, and are considered to behave in a very feminine manner, this diffusion of organisation was particularly marked. The phenomenon has also been found in men whose exposure to androgens in the womb was reduced.
    Workers following hormonal hypotheses have found that in rats given testosterone at birth, the females developed a larger corpus callosum. Others have found that male rats showed a thicker right hemisphere, except when they were very old. One developmental theory is that high levels of prenatal testosterone slow neuron growth in left hemisphere.
    However, Shute(4) analysed blood samples from groups of males and females whose hormones were within the normal range. For spatial tests, females with high androgen levels performed better than their lower androgen counterparts. However, low testosterone men performed better than high testosterone men, leading the researchers to conclude that high androgens may inhibit the acquisition of spatial skills, and that there may a low optimum level.
    Other tests have claimed that females are superior in language, verbal fluency, speed of articulation and grammar, also arithmetic calculation. Their perceptual speed, for instance in matching items is better, and so is their manual precision. Males are reckoned to be better at tasks that are spatial in nature, such as maze performance and mental rotation tasks. Also mechanical skills, mathematical reasoning and finding their way through a route. Certainly, among brain injury patients, after damage to the left hemisphere, long term speech difficulties occur three times more often in males.
    Some critics asked why, after a hundred years of research, these findings have only just appeared. One reason may be that most of the subjects studied originally were male war veterans. But, in any case, nobody had looked for sex differences. What we are discussing are average differences which are statistically significant but their effect is very small within a very wide range of individual variation. The investigator must be specifically looking for them, using a large number of subjects.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ivy View Post
    Gosh, the world looks so small from up here on my high horse of menstruation.

  5. #65
    Sugar Hiccup OrangeAppled's Avatar
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    Hm....my ratio is approx .95, 71:75 mm. I guess this makes me low 2D:4D women and more "masculine".

    For the record, I am straight, identify solidly with being the female sex, & don't have too much issue with my gender role (I embrace a lot of typical female interests & preferences).


    I realize my fingers are spread apart, but I still think the photo shows my index finger is shorter...

    Often a star was waiting for you to notice it. A wave rolled toward you out of the distant past, or as you walked under an open window, a violin yielded itself to your hearing. All this was mission. But could you accomplish it? (Rilke)

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  6. #66
    Don't Judge Me! Haphazard's Avatar
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    My 2nd and 4th fingers are the same length.

    I wonder, though, if there's any significance to having such large palms in comparison to the fingers, or such a short pinky finger.

    -Carefully taking sips from the Fire Hose of Knowledge

  7. #67
    (blankpages) Xenon's Avatar
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    Are you people just measuring one hand? My ratio is 0.99 on my left hand but 0.95 on my right.

    I wonder how strong the listed correlations actually are. People are so fascinated by sex differences that these kinds of studies can make waves even if their findings are practically negligible.

    Why would a guy with a feminine digit ratio be at increased risk of early heart attack, if women's risk of early heart attacks is generally lower than men's?

  8. #68
    meh Salomé's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by blankpages View Post
    Are you people just measuring one hand? My ratio is 0.99 on my left hand but 0.95 on my right.

    I wonder how strong the listed correlations actually are. People are so fascinated by sex differences that these kinds of studies can make waves even if their findings are practically negligible.

    Why would a guy with a feminine digit ratio be at increased risk of early heart attack, if women's risk of early heart attacks is generally lower than men's?
    Women are protected (from heart disease) by female hormones until menopause.

    Finger length ratio (2D:4D) is a sexually dimorphic trait. The ratio of second digit
    (index finger) to fourth digit (ring finger) is smaller for males than females in humans,
    mice, and baboons (Brown et al., 2002b; Manning, 2002a; Manning et al., 2000; McFadden
    and Bracht, 2003; McFadden and Shubel, 2002; Peters et al., 2002).

    Sexual dimorphism in digit ratio is seen by the age of two
    and is thought to be stable thereafter, even through puberty (Manning et al., 1998; Brown et
    al., 2002b; Manning, 2002a). Index to ring finger, or 2D:4D is the most strongly dimorphic
    of all human digit ratio combinations (McFadden and Shubel, 2002).
    Variation in finger length ratio is thought to reflect the influence of prenatal testosterone
    during development (Manning, 2002a; Manning et al., 2003a). While this correlation is
    somewhat conjectural, two non-exclusive causes have been posited. The first is that
    common genes (Hoxa and Hoxd) underlie development of both fingers and gonads (Kondo
    et al., 1997; Peichel et al., 1997). The second is that allelic variation in androgen receptor
    sensitivity influences digit ratio. More masculine finger ratios are associated with androgen
    receptor alleles with fewer CAG base-pair microsatellite repeats in the terminal domain
    (Manning et al., 2003a). Increased number of such repeats produces receptors with lower
    androgen sensitivity (Chamberlain et al., 1994; Kazemi-Esfarjani et al., 1995).
    More evidence for a relationship between androgen concentration during development
    and finger ratio comes from children with congenital adrenal hyperplasia (CAH). CAH
    causes the individual to be exposed to increased levels of androgens from early in gestation
    to the early neonatal period (Berenbaum and Reinisch, 1997). Both males and females with
    CAH, and therefore high developmental androgens, exhibit more masculine finger length
    ratios than controls (Brown et al., 2002c; Okten et al., 2002), but not necessarily when
    measured on the left hand (Buck et al., 2003).
    Digit ratio has consistently been shown to be more dimorphic on the right hand than on
    the left in humans (Manning et al., 1998; McFadden and Shubel, 2002; Williams et al.,
    2000), baboons (McFadden and Bracht, 2003) mice (Brown et al., 2002b), and finches
    (Burley and Foster, 2004). Several authors have suggested that androgenization affects the
    right hand more than the left (McFadden and Shubel, 2002;Williams et al., 2000; Brown et
    al., 2002b).
    Quote Originally Posted by Ivy View Post
    Gosh, the world looks so small from up here on my high horse of menstruation.

  9. #69
    (blankpages) Xenon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Morgan Le Fay View Post
    Women are protected (from heart disease) by female hormones until menopause.
    Yeah, but I'm wondering why men with feminine digit ratios would have an increased risk relative to other men.

    Several authors have suggested that androgenization affects the
    right hand more than the left (McFadden and Shubel, 2002;Williams et al., 2000; Brown et
    al., 2002b).
    Huh! Interesting.

  10. #70
    meh Salomé's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by blankpages View Post
    Yeah, but I'm wondering why men with feminine digit ratios would have an increased risk relative to other men.
    Well...they're less athletic (given that the opposite ratio is listed as more athletic) so maybe they're more inclined towards obesity?
    Dunno.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ivy View Post
    Gosh, the world looks so small from up here on my high horse of menstruation.

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