Before I ever went on a forum, I never read, had a poor vocabulary and my understanding of general concepts was lacking.
I'm naturally a smart person, but I never put the work in at school and college, and that remains my number one regret. However, I found that public forums gave me licence to debate, give and receive advice, and to discover new hobbies (Reading and programming).
I've learnt a lot personally and I owe most of it to public forums because without it, I would have never discovered my favorite book which got me into reading, and the help needed to pass my Computing A-Level (although I could have stayed behind for catch up lessons, but my teacher was a dick).
I'm not sure about smarter but it helps a lot! I don't have much problems with English but i do not understand everything or know all words.
Whenever i'm in a discussion and someone uses a word i don't know the meaning of i google it up and remember what it means. I'm also trying to improve writing using Punctuation's But i often still misplace those and sometimes just don't know where to put them
when it comes to words, yes. If u ask about finding any good advice on those, ill quote one of the nobel price winners :" i never knew there r so many idiots in the world, until i plugged myself to Internet."
In a way, sure. Debate is the whetstone with which one sharpens the mind.
Although internet arguments might sometimes feel like you are simply bashing your head against an immovable and particularly dense wall, after which the position of both sides remains completely unchanged, the practice of actually articulating your own beliefs and opinions and laying them out in a constructive argumentative form helps you to refine your own positions and better explain (if only to yourself) the reasons for why you hold them and prepares you to better defend and champion them in the future.
Marx might have made a number of miscalculations, but he was right on the money when it came to his placing emphasis on the importance of dialectics.
it helps me to practice my english i guess. im from sitzerland and i think most of my english skills came from reading forums, playing games in english and watching english movies. that said, my speaking practice is lacking a lot in comparision, simply because i dont know anyone to whom i could talk enlish to.
but im not sure if learning a foreign language counts as "making someone smarter" :> it helped me aquire more knowledge and stuff, but knowledge isnt "smartness" right?
Forums can be a great form of social constructivism, one of the predominant theories of learning.
I guess there are two types of people. The ones who think they know everything, who come on here with closed minds and will take nothing back. Then there are those with open minds who enjoy sharing and discussing information to enlighten each other.