6.2.10

Daniel Tammet



I would recommend this documentary about Daniel Tammet. (this is part 1 of 5) It also shows some interesting things about Kim Peek whom Daniel meets during it. What is especially interesting though is that it shows how as a young child he was fascinated by patterns, and numbers and did very repetitive things. So it brings up the question as to whether his unique brain directly caused his ability, or his unique brain caused his interests and behavior which in turn caused his ability (or both). Because if you watch towards the end it shows that people can learn to do the massive calculations he does just as quickly with an abacus, and after a while they don't need the abacus, but only use it as a mental concept to visualize the numbers (just like Daniel uses colors and shapes). In fact in his book "Embracing the Wide Sky" Daniel argues that the differences between Savant brains and normal brains have been exaggerated. This would be a wonderful educational technique if we could simulate Daniel's learning behavior with educational software.

Also see my free university idea:
http://themeatyard.blogspot.com/2009/04/free-and-completely-online-university.html

In addition I want to thank Tammet for cooperating with scientists, and attempting to shed light on his unique ability, and share it with the rest of us. From the interviews I've seen of him he seems to be a very nice, and humble person. For more information on Tammet see:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Daniel_Tammet
His blog:
http://www.optimnem.co.uk/blog/
His e-learning company:
http://www.optimnem.co.uk/

No comments: