Big Motoring Memorabilia Nice 1000 Pieces Jigsaw Puzzle. To this day, in fact, skill at puzzle solving is thought to be the
privilege of those who, like Oedipus, are endowed with superior intelligence. In a
study published in 1982, the psychologists Sternberg and Davidson investigated
this very belief, examining the relationship between puzzle- solving and IQ,
fi nding that success at puzzle solving did not correlate with IQ.
Motoring Memorabilia, Gibsons
No study since
theirs has come forward to refute or seriously contradict their study. Th e two
psychologists subsequently continued to pursue this important line of inquiry
( Sternberg 1985, Sternberg and Davidson 2003 ). Simply put, their research
suggests that the concept of IQ , and even of intelligence itself, requires revision
or at least some elaboration, given that the phenomenon of puzzles raises many
questions about our views of intelligence.
Lighthouse Bay, Gibsons
Of relevance is the study by Lee, Goodwin, and Johnson-Laird on the
psychology of Sudoku ( 2008 ). Th e experiments reported in the study show that
there is more to Sudoku than just deductive reasoning. A major strategic shift in
cognition is necessary to acquire tactics for solving more diffi cult (complex)
puzzles, since solvers have to keep track of possible digits in a cell. Th e study
suggests that reasoning is crucial in solving puzzles but that there are other
aspects that involve memory and inferential thinking. Puzzles, in eff ect, provide
a unique opportunity to examine the construct of intelligence in a unifi ed
Golden Hour, Gibsons
Let us look more closely at Alcuin's River-Crossing Puzzle. Actually, there are
four such puzzles in the Propositiones, numbered 17, 18, 19, and 20. Th ey are
reproduced here for the sake of convenience:
Number 17: Propositio de tribus fratribus singulas habentibus sorores
Th ere were three men, each having an unmarried sister, who needed to cross a river.
Each man was desirous of his friend's sister. Coming to the river, they found only a
small boat in which only two persons could cross at a time. How did they cross the
river, so that none of the sisters were defi led by the men?
Clocktower Market, Gibsons
Number 18: Propositio de homine et capra et lupo
A certain man needed to take a wolf, a she- goat and a load of cabbage across a
river. However, he could only fi nd a boat which would carry two of these [at a
time]. Th us, what rule did he employ so as to get all of them across unharmed?
Number 19: Propositio de viro et muliere ponderantibus [plaustri pondus onusti]
A man and his wife, each the weight of a loaded cart, who had two children each
the weight of a small cart, needed to cross a river. However, the boat they came
across could only carry the weight of one cart. Devise [a way] of crossing in order
that the boat should not sink.
Number 20: Propositio de hirtitiis
A masculine and feminine [. . .] who had two children weighing a pound wished to
cross a river.
XXL Pieces, Dressmaker's Daughter, Gibsons
Puzzle 20 is obviously incomplete and thus will not be discussed here. Puzzle
17 is fascinating on several counts. Culturally, the wording of this puzzle provides
a snapshot of gender relations in the medieval era today, it would sound
antiquated or anomalous in its portrayal of such
relations. Mathematician Niccol o Tartaglia became especially intrigued by this
puzzle, inventing one of his own in which three brides and their jealous husbands
had to go across the river another culturally revealing wording of the same