DEV Community


Posted on

Genius, Intelligent, Clever, Smart (GICS); Which One would you be?

Image description

All these words "Smart," "Clever," "Genius," and "Intelligent" have somehow similar meanings. As these words have minor differences and are used according to different situations, many need clarification on their meanings. Hence, knowing the difference between these terms and where and when to use them appropriately is important.

Each of these terms defines a person's cognitive ability and describes different factors of understanding. Here, in this article, we will help you to understand, differentiate and compare these terms and let you know which is better.


Image description

Genius is defined to be a term that is used for a person who has a remarkable intellect. If a person is a genius, it is extraordinary, as it is more than being smart or having a high IQ. Although being smart is also a characteristic of a genius person, it requires more than that.

A genius is someone who not only understands a problem but finds a creative solution for it. But a genius has the ability to ask rare questions related to it as well. Asking questions is not a big thing, but a genius asks questions that not many people have asked before. Defining a genius is not a simple task; however, to be precise, it requires various factors, including creativity, intelligence, unique thinking, etc.


Image description

The term intelligent is usually used to describe someone who has a high level of cognitive ability. If a person is intelligent, they will have a good memory and also the ability to learn new things in a short period of time. Plus, intelligent people also have very high general knowledge.

Being intelligent and smart are somehow alike. However, when a person is smart, they act according to the information they get. Whereas an intelligent person evaluates a situation and seeks out their own information, and understands the situation by themselves.


A Clever is a person who is quick and fast with the situation. A clever person comes up with ideas instantly and acts accordingly. Being clever does not require a person to be intellectual. They usually have creative thoughts and come up with distinctive ideas. People who are clever think out of the box, and their thoughts are, most of the time, not very generic.


Image description

If a person is called Smart, then he must have good logical thinking skills. A smart person has the ability to understand the situation and make a good choice according to it. Being smart also means that the person understands and works effectively with the guidance or information you provide.

Comparative Research: Which One is Better?

We cannot say that a certain quality is better than the other because these things imperatively depend on the context. In some situations, being smart and clever is important in order to make the right and quick decisions. Such qualities are needed for creative thinking and to raise a solution that is unique and has value.

But if we talk about being intelligent, there are some scenarios where a high level of IQ and good general knowledge is necessary. Genius is required to think out of the box and come up with new ideas that are extremely rare. Many scientists and philosophers in history were geniuses, hence, gave us masterpieces. Therefore, there is no comparison between these qualities as they are all somewhat important in different contexts.


It is worth mentioning that the terms “Smart,” “Clever,” “Genius,” and “Intelligent” cannot be used for a definite meaning. These terms are sometimes also used as synonyms for one another. If we want to know which quality is required in our daily situations and from regular perspectives of life, then being smart and clever is important.

Having a sharp mind makes a person come up with solutions for every situation. If you are intelligent or a genius, but you do not have any idea how you can act with knowledge, your ability is probably not very useful. As these qualities require different scenarios for judgement, we can say knowing the situation will help a lot to know which is more necessary at that moment.

Top comments (0)

50 CLI Tools You Can't Live Without

>> Check out this classic DEV post <<