Dept. Of Meaningless Lists: “America’s Smartest Cities” Are Just Boring College Towns

Lists around here always get our attention, and usually, we end up at least near the top of said lists, whether they be good or bad. This time, however, we’re missing.

Lumosity, which “creates brain-training exercises,” took a look at data “from more than 3 million people in the U.S. between the ages of 18 and 75 who had played several Lumosity brain-training games.” Using this (albeit limited) data, Lumosity ranked the top 100 smartest cities in America, which actually reads more like a list of college towns where students outnumber residents, and are also so bored that Lumosity games seem like a cool way to pass the time. Among the Pennsylvania locations — and their corresponding local colleges — on the list are:

2. State College, PA (Penn State)
28. Lebanon, PA (Lebanon Valley College)
32. Bloomsburg-Berwick, PA (Bloomsburg University)
46. Oil City, PA (Clarion University, kinda)
53. Pittsburgh, PA (University of Pittsburgh, Carnegie Mellon University, Duquesne University, others)
63. Lancaster, PA (Millersville University, others)
64. Reading, PA (Albright College, Alvernia University, maybe Kutztown University, others)
75. Altoona, PA (Penn State Altoona)
82. Harrisburg-Carlisle, PA (Dickinson College, various nearby schools)
97. Allentown-Bethlehem-Easton, PA-NJ (Muhlenberg College, Moravian College, Lehigh University)

Other than Pittsburgh (ugh, Pittsburgh), the list is more or less a compendium of higher education locations in PA. Still, with Drexel, Penn, Temple, University of the Sciences, etc., you’d think Philly would crack the top 100 on this list (actually, the Philly-Wilmington-Camden metro area takes the 197th spot). We can think of only one explanation: Students in Philly are too busy learning (or … uh … partying) to play Lumosity games, or even know they exist. That’s gotta be it. Well, that or the whole Wilmington-Camden thing.

  • Barbara Force

    Oh don’t be so jealous of Ithaca. Maybe you should give us a visit. I’m sure you’d like it here.