Tuesday, April 10, 2007

The Boy with the Incredible Brain

I found this facinating video over at Fede's site Strayed, Uncorrelated Thoughts. If you have the time, I highly recommend watching it. It's about an extremely high functioning savant, Daniel Tammet. He first came to worldwide attention in March 2004 on International Pi Day when he recited, from memory, Pi to 22,514 decimal places. The event took over five hours and he set a new European record. He used this event to raise funds for the National Society for Epilepsy because it was after a series of childhood seizures that he developed his extrodinary number and memory abilities.

Daniel is highly articulate which is unusual as most savants also exhibit severe disabilities. Thus he is invaluable to science as he is able to describe what is going on in his head while he is making massive caculations. In addition to his number and massive memory skills, he also has exceptional language skills. He speaks over seven languages fluently and at the end of this documentary he is put to the ultimate test as he attempts to learn Icelandic in just 7 days and then appear on national television. Watch to find out what happens.

7 comments:

Mone said...

Just recently I have watched this documentary on TV with my kids. At first they were thinking it was a scam, but later on they were totally amazed. It is difficult to imagine how it is to actually "see" numbers.

Winters said...

I shall make time to watch this later today, Carla. Thanks for the recommendation.

Enjoy your day. Here in Paris the Spring has finally arrived. Hooray.

Carla said...

Mone, yes, it is difficult to imagine. I found the whole documentary facinating. It really is amazing what the brain is capable of.

Winters, I hope you enjoy. Spring has also arrived here. It seems like it was a long time coming this year. I certainly will enjoy the sunshine and all the rest that comes with spring. I bet Paris is beautiful this time of year.

The Fool said...

I...feel...so...stoopit.

;)

tkkerouac said...

I just sat and watched the entire film. I have always been facinated by Savants and Rainman is the ultimate one, that piece of the clip brought tears to my eyes.
Thanks for your comments Carla
I've linked you
I'll be sending Raymi over to watch this one.

Toby said...

Hi Carla, I too recently watched this on TV, it had to have been PBS, but I can't remember. LOL

I'm glad Spring has arrived for someone. Two weeks ago I had a taste when it got up to 80 (unusual), but then it dropped back to the 20's and 30 and today it snowing really bad. We're supposed to get upwards of 8". Maybe Spring will be here next week.

Carla said...

Fool, I know what you mean. I would be in bliss if I had that "learn a new language in 7 days" ability.

Tkkerouac, I'm glad you enjoyed the clip. I too find the whole notion facinating.

Toby, it seems that more people are familiar with this documentary than I thought. It was the first I'd heard of it.

I hope spring arrives for you soon. I think it's finally here...but the weather has been a little up and down here too.