EDIT: Consensus seems to be that having two different Hovind Scales would be too confusing. I’ll leave the main post unedited and wait for further comment.
cyberguy of the RichardDawkins.net forums has proposed a revision to the Hovind Scale (you may need a free membership to see it.) This change addresses the most common criticism of the scale: the disproportionately high weighting of the mendacity factor. The new change applies a 30% weight to devotion to scripture, scientific illiteracy, and internal inconstistency, and a combined 70% weight to idiocy and mendacity. The equation becomes as follows:
(X + S + p) * 3 + (i + m) * 7
The idiocy scale then changes from a maximum of 10 points to the following:
Idiocy scale – “i”
0 – no discernible stupidity
1 – slightly silly, but understandable
2 – foolish
3 – very funny in a worrying way
4 – unlikely to be accepted by anyone with more than two functioning neurons
5 – Moronic. Stark-bollock-naked, off-the-wall, wing-nut (Kirk Cameron or VenomFangX)
Under this scheme, the maximum is still 100, but the difficulty in discriminating idiocy from dishonesty is lessened. I’ll announce this change here and in the main Hovind Scale post, and if the feedback is good I’ll permanently revise the main post. In that event I’ll also ask the author of the online calculator to revise it; for the time being it still reflects the old scale.
As per qbsmd’s excellent suggestion on the main Hovind Scale post, I plan to construct tables pairing real-world example statements with the various values of the variables included within the scale. This should give a clearer idea of how to make the most of the scale. Cataloging all that idiocy will also be fun for me! (Or it might drive me crazy.)
cyberguy calls his revised version the “Balanced Hovind Scale,” but if people like the change I’m perfectly happy to call it simply “the Hovind Scale.” Please let me know what you think!