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Conversation with Gareth Rees on Family Facts, Home Environment, Genius, and the World’s Problems: Member, Canadian High IQ Society (1)


Author(s): Scott Douglas Jacobsen

Publication (Outlet/Website): In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal

Publication Date (yyyy/mm/dd): 2020/12/22


Gareth Rees is a Member of the Canadian High IQ Society. He discusses: important familial historical facts; extended senses of a self; the parents’ form of childrearing; some pivotal moments; high-range tests; giftedness; the important aspects of giftedness; some odd jobs; the levels of education attained; recent independent intellectual pursuits; the smartest people in the world; and the world’s problems needing solving.

Keywords: Canada, Canadian High IQ Society, Gareth Rees, Genius, World.

Conversation with Gareth Rees on Family Facts, Home Environment, Genius, and the World’s Problems: Member, Canadian High IQ Society (1)

*Please see the footnotes, bibliography, and citation style listing after the interview.*

Scott Douglas Jacobsen: Let’s start off on the regular informational set-ups for these kinds of interviews, where the narrative structure comes from the background information of the individual interviewee. What are important familial historical facts about you?

Gareth Rees[1],[2]*Offhand I have nothing important to mention, just out of the ordinary. I was adopted from San Pedro Sula, Honduras, and was raised in an upper-middle class environment, the bulk of which was done in Canada. I have no information about my biological parents. My (deceased) father was British and my mother is Canadian. My non-biological father did qualify for Mensa, but that’s just a coincidence.  

Jacobsen: How have these extended senses of a self informed some personal identity formation for you?

Rees: They have not as I consider myself ground zero, or a historical reset if you will.

Jacobsen: How did these form some threads for the parents’ form of childrearing and the home environment for you?

Rees: I was spoiled and babied growing up. I believe this is normal for adopted children. I always had access to resources and was provided with most things I asked for. This fit well with my general resistance to stress and want for playtime.

Jacobsen: What have been some pivotal moments in early life – childhood and adolescence – in intellectual formation and coming to terms with giftedness?

Rees: I was never identified as gifted. I’m not optimized for the academic environment, at least in the way it’s conventionally set up. I was scholastically tested and came out average because of learning issues at school which led to diagnoses. I have never even taken a proctored IQ test. I do prefer it this way. I have more autonomy; this results in more free will if one believes in such a concept.

Jacobsen: What is the purpose of the taking high-range tests and taking part in some of the high-IQ community?

Rees: I have an interest in genius/intelligence. That is specifically genius in the context of useful research and not IQ classification at/above some arbitrary set number. Interest in intelligence led to IQ whereby I fell into trying to measure my own. Useful reasons are best laid out by Paul Cooijmans in his reasons to take tests. I refer to him because of his mature and objective outlook, that is namely insight into strengths and weaknesses of my profile.

Other reasons include something called “need for cognition”, and dopamine chasing. It’s something to occupy the mind and reward one with good feeling. I also wanted entrance into the Glia Society. Membership was finally acquired on Christmas day in 2016.

Jacobsen: How has giftedness been a burden in life? How has giftedness been a blessing for you?

Rees: I can’t say it has, or rather I’m not gifted enough for there to be a noticeable impact in my life. Conversely, my answer remains similar in that I haven’t really profited, whether monetarily or non-monetarily. If I can attain my needs and desires, then naturally there’s no identification of burdens or blessings. I grew up in a mostly stable household and have maintained employment, so there’s no hole I have had to dig myself out of.

If I ever achieve something noteworthy, then my answer will change. I have interests and my open problem of choice, so it remains to be executed.

Jacobsen: What are some of the important aspects of giftedness not talked about enough in cultures?

Rees: I think a lack of support if there is such a thing is worse than any aspects not talked about. I don’t have a good answer for this as I personally don’t consider it a problem. Labeling one as gifted usually generates expectations. Expectations can be a burden especially if they aren’t one’s own. Depending on the person, guidance and freedom are the most important aspects necessary for keeping that gifted person mentally healthy. It can also be beneficial to have a mentor.

Jacobsen: What have been some odd jobs for you?

Rees: I haven’t had any odd jobs, but I’ve done factory work which is boring, modeling which was awkward, to my current job which is related to software and a much better fit for my profile.

Jacobsen: What have been the levels of education attained for you?

Rees: College Diploma – 2 Years post secondary equivalent.

I studied Network Engineering, but it’s closer to network configuration as I don’t engineer hardware or software. Marketing sure is a cheesy business.

Jacobsen: Have you taken some time for recent independent intellectual pursuits?

Rees: I have, my current interest is in understanding intelligence from its metaform if it has one, or requires one, to full conversion into written theory, then algorithms and eventually programmed general AI. I’m in the early stages right now and that includes being self-funded to gathering the necessary information-based resources.

Jacobsen: Who do you consider some of the smartest people in the world, in history or at present?

Rees: The smartest people in my opinion are those solving (or have solved) or at least are trying to solve the hardest problems such as Edward Witten (theoretical physicist), Grigori Perelman (formerly a professional Mathematician) Paul Cooijmans (in possession of a mountain of data in regard to IQ), Chris Langan (very strong generalist) and all those in their respective fields.

It’s way easier to name past people of influence such as Archimedes, Newton, Einstein, Goethe, Tesla, da Vinci, Jung, Freud, Socrates, Aristotle, Galileo and many more…

Jacobsen: What do you see as some of the world’s problems needing solving now?

Rees: People lack understanding and the capacity to have it, especially in (heat of) the moment, of other people and themselves, hence why some arguments/feelings form or escalate. This missing piece transcends incompatibility or human chemistry. It’s simply a missing step in the direction of enlightenment. This lack of meta-awareness and meta-understanding can be augmented with AI as a coprocessor for real-time experience. It’s an issue where knowing isn’t enough and the doing isn’t easy. Ayahuasca’s effects are another form of solution to this problem, but it’s not safe for everyone to ingest and it’s already banned in most countries. It also is not an active solution but more of an event that leads to an impression on one’s life.

Another problem is wealth inequality, in which the only solution that I can see would be to get so wealthy as to freely (re)distribute wealth wherever and whenever required. This is, however, controversial for several reasons and it’s also unrealistic, but it’s the easiest solution given the current rules and setup people choose to accept.  

Population control is another issue as the world advances further and further in both technology and employment opportunities.   

Lack of androids (applied general AI) to solve loneliness and love related issues. This is a better alternative than altering chemicals with drugs of choice, and I suppose virtual reality is a decent stopgap for the time being. There is a lot of missing progress from the GAI to the actual engineering required to even make an android walk like a human. It will be a while before this is even a reality.

These to me are the biggest problems in need of solutions as soon as possible.

Appendix I: Footnotes

[1] Member, Canadian High IQ Society.

[2] Individual Publication Date: December 22, 2020:; Full Issue Publication Date: January 1, 2021:

*High range testing (HRT) should be taken with honest skepticism grounded in the limited empirical development of the field at present, even in spite of honest and sincere efforts. If a higher general intelligence score, then the greater the variability in, and margin of error in, the general intelligence scores because of the greater rarity in the population.


In-Sight Publishing by Scott Douglas Jacobsen is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License. Based on a work at


© Scott Douglas Jacobsen and In-Sight Publishing 2012-Present. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Scott Douglas Jacobsen and In-Sight Publishing with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. All interviewees and authors co-copyright their material and may disseminate for their independent purposes.

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