The Boy With The Incredible Brain
This is the breathtaking story of Daniel Tammet. A twenty-something with extraordinary mental abilities, Daniel is one of the world’s few savants. He can do calculations to 100 decimal places in his head, and learn a language in a week.
He also meets the world’s most famous savant, the man who inspired Dustin Hoffman’s character in the Oscar winning film ‘Rain Man’
This documentary follows Daniel as he travels to America to meet the scientists who are convinced he may hold the key to unlocking similar abilities in everyone.
how do I download this documentary? Please help?
Simply amazing person, I have recommended his books, the documentary and Omninet to many of my friends.
Looking forward to the ENG:LISH TRANSLATION of his first novel, written in French!
Simply amazing person, I have recommended his books, the documentary and Omninet to many of my friends.
Looking forward to the ENG:LISH TRANSLATION of his first novel, written in French!
than you for being who and what you are
It seems some of the comentors here proclaim themselves above average intelligence because their basic observation of a phenomenon they can't begin to understand and try to break it down or tear it apart in such a way as to suggest, this guy isn't that smart because I am smart enough to see it for what it really is.
This guy from my interpretation seems to be using abilities we all are equipped with but have not honed into there full potential. He has learned how to use his imagination in novel ways we dont or cannot understand yet. (Einstein said "Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited to all we now know and understand, while imagination embraces the entire world, and all there ever will be to know and understand.) It would seem to an average guy like myself that there is something, possibly revolutionary, to be learned from Daniel Tammet. What if it is more important for man's ability to learn be based more upon how we learn to use our built in abilities, like imagination, rather than 'what' we can learn and retain using our memory alone. There is clearly an opportunity to change our level of potential intelligence if we can set our egos aside, consider the possibilities, and act upon it. What could it hurt to ask this man, if you we were to aske you to teach people how to use their imaginations in the same way in which you have learned to use yours, would you, could you? Where do you think we should start? With Children, who have the best use of their imaginations, starting from an early age and lose it as they grow older.
Does no one else consider this single possibility a worthy cause worth pursuing? Danial, if this is a contribution you would be interested in persuing, a project like this is certainly something I'd be interested in investing my time and resources into. My daughter would be one among many interested in cultivating their imagination into all it has the potential to be. In the least it would be a very fun experiment. I think you are an excellent individual and I am sure the world is a better place because of your existence.
P.S. I do NOT expect Danial to see this message, I simply wanted to put a more positive point of view out into the universe
I have been trying to imagine calculations to be shapes, hopefully it will eventually become a direct perceptual experience.
What is this digital movie made of? A series of numbers. God is a mathematician. :)
I loved this, i kind of understand the the ability to see imagery in the mind after an accident; as trauma could cause electrical signals to route to different paths. but how the brain can sub-consciously do all that maths... mind boggling.
Check out Moonwalking with Einstein by Joshua Foer. He really convinced me that this man is a fraud, but is trained in the mnemonic abilities. Check it out and form your own opinion, but everything he does, a mnemonist can do too.
On a scale of 1 to 10 this doc is definitely a 20 !!!!!
Hi mentioned how he visualized/experienced the numbers; 1, 2, 5, 6, and 9 ...what about 3,4,7, and 8? Or Country Joe and the Fish's song: "and it's 1,2,3 what are we fighting 4? ....and it's 5,6,7, open up the Pearly g'8's...."
It gets one to wonder who else in past history has been a savant, because it can manifest in many variations. The Buddha? Archimedes? Ghandi? Jimi Hendrix? Joan of Arc?
Sooner or later someone will find a way to induce these talents for military and economic gain. Possibly It has already been done. Then there will be the "normals" and the "enhanced". Scary.
So, what do you think is going on ?
Reminds me of Ringing Cedars,
some of what Basiago talked about,
down loading or tapping in.
The Matrix ( Yikes! )
Oh, but "science" will figure it out. Not.
Miler, brain-mind as hologram, dimensions, planes.
Remember talking about the magnetic stimulation device, it zaps and turns off tissue, brings up savant capabilities as long as the device is on.
Most of all, reminds me of Jim Sparks (youtubes, The Keepers).
Forced to sit in front of computer, learn symbols, symbols also had movement.
It's always what one does with it - Heart
Otherwise, it ain't worth doggie poopoo.
Really makes you wonder exactly what is going on in his brain as he solves complex math problems...Amazing!
wow im amazed
this documentary deserves a lot more views... the way he describes his mental imagery when processing calculations is simply amazing
screw the maths.. I want to know how he learns languages so fast!!!
Kim Peek was the original rain man. Not that the other information is wrong. Just that.
This reminds me more of Synesthesia than someone with Autism or the ASD spectrum. Look it up! Quite fascinating.
Daniel's book, "Born on a Blue Day," is an absorbing read. He's autistic, and sees everyone and everything as having numbers all over them -- the numbers are memorable for him. He learned a number of languages in very short times, including Icelandic. I believe that was the one he learned in 10 days enough to converse reasonably fluently. The scientific thinking and speculation that his experience and talents have raised is incredibly exciting. Give yourself a treat and read about this man.
Dang, well at least its not hard work, but abnormal brain wiring.
WOW! Definitely recommend watching this doc!
What an amazing guy. And such a gentle spirit too.
An excellent documentary. I too have a photographic memory, as my father before me, and my son was diagnosed as borderline autistic. Although I recognize social limitations in the male side of my family, I find it interesting how social ability pays a price for increased mental skills. The irony is when I attended Vancouver film school, my classmates nick named me 'rain man', but my ability to memorize is not anything like that of Kim Peek, or Daniel Tammat. Also, where their strength is knowledge based, mine covered a broader canvas including physical ability. I am of the opinion that what the general population should take from a show of this type is that ability takes shape in many forms, and that old ideas that people only use 5 or 10% of their brain capacity is only true for those who don't apply themselves. The sad part is that people who may have great social skills, are basically trained in the art of deception. (sweet talkers) The greatest thinkers, and contributers to society in the last 2000 years were always social misfits (DaVinci, Newton, Einstein, Galileo, etc) because they were intelligent enough to do what they wanted, not what they were told.
He only got a "C" in woodwork at GCSE. I breezed through with an A. Fair play on the maths though Dan.
I get Alan Turing vibes.
"You might hear a sound or see a color" FAIL!!!!!!!!
Ha Ha ! Now we know who to ask to solve PI
you know... i always though everyone though of most things as associated with emotions, maybe im wrong. but i think of numbers and colors and patterns as each having their own emotion (im far from a savant though). am i wrong to assume that everyone thinks in this manner?
This gave me a whole new understanding to Autism. I thought autism was wrong and I was offended that someone would even suggest that my son was autistic. To some degree, I believe he is cause his memory is so freaking sharp! He has been reading since he was 3 and when he's interested in a particular subject, he's so into it for a good while then he gets bored with it and does the same to something else. He is social and has no obvious disabilites due to his autism so, I'm no doctor but if my son is indeed autistic then I won't be so worried if it is true.
The way Daniel associates platonic forms that derive from his sub-conscious value in numbers, he reveals by molding the two yellow silly puddy blobs to integrate these varying shapes to find the mean between the two which creates an entirely new abstraction in his numerical/ontological order the number like 588785? which turns out to appear like a missing puzzle piece by the very fact that it is symmetrically precise with all the rest gave me a glimpse of insight about all the thoughts that we think, images we see and feel, it and the worlds undertaking of pain for our little reason and desperation for the clarity of our passions inflamed...;p what if they follow an almost divine like pattern that expresses nothing more than the perfection of the universe it's self, (not that everything in reality is perfect) but, just as the way someone says I love you. The words, I love... echoe and engender the world with new meaning that people like you and me, Daniel were sent here on earth to reap the joysof understanding the overwhelming magnitude of eternal perfection! soo ignorance is not bliss-its hell as opposed to heaven being a hyper calculating super genius for a fortnight in Las Vegas! terrible place..
mysterious brain, what we know of autism is maybe 10%, rest daniel can explain us to an extent, so looking forward to meet daniel in person to discover some more mystery about autism.
Subhasis Sarkar, Occupational Therapist
I wish that he learns Arabic language and see Qur'anic numeric messages. It would be great to see how he feels number 19 in Qur'an
my observations are that he treats the numbers and words as we treat fellow humans and objects in the real world. He has emotions attached to each one of them. e.g. He finds pie beautiful, and when the number is tampered with he finds it repulsive. Right from childhood, He has met the number pie over and over in his brain as we might meet a beautiful girl in the real world. SO he knows his pie:) Numbers and words are his world. He interacts with them just as we talk to other people. They are a part of his daily existence. He has carved a landscape out of them( finds skyscrapers and bright lights distracting). He can see the pattern( grammar in language and mathematical calculations in numbers) in a way that no computer can learn. Its like quantum computing where a variable in his head can take up multiple values simultaneously. And when he is distracted enough as to not being able to calculate he uses his instinct -which is a feeling/emotion. (he won the game in the casino by relying on his instinct.) TO me he is One damn interesting and good nature d fellow. Good to have a peek into his world.
@raj - just think before you comment on someone differently-abled else that shows you are completely disabled up there.
I wish I could have this skill for remembering the relevant things in the books I read. What he needs to do is specialize in a field, and then excell in it.
I am troubled by the memory use as well in even the "proof" of his visualizations of numbers up to a certain number shown by his ability to assign a image to one, create it in clay, and then re-create the same image for the same number the next day...this to me seems again, a feat of memory. However, and please excuse my lack of formal education in our own language and it's grammar usage and take my beggin of pardon for this in this comment, but I am intrigued by his abiltiy to begin to hear a language so well and correctly interperet a native speaker's content so quickly. To me, this is a much more interesting feat than memorizing the language and its usage. Often native speakers, and the ones on this show seemed to show no mercy in slowing their speech or even likely unheard to my ear, the regional differences in the same speech patterns by each interviewer, resulting from each man probably coming from a different region in the country, are the hardest to understand and present the last obstacle in truly speaking and hearing fluently a language. Immersion is used for this reason as well as how it fosters a environment that forces a student to learn quickly how to at least ask for basic needs, since obviously if you cannot eat unless you learn to ask for food, you are going to learn faster when deprivation of desires and needs are motivators or punishments if you do not learn quickly how to express yourself...motivation by deprivation is why I threw in maybe punishment. However, the ear, the ability to discern the language spoken in such a way as to another native speaker, the cadence of different regional differences and so forth, are the last things immersion allows to happen and it does take time. This is simply not a memory-only based skill you aquire since it requires the abiltiy of the ear and mind to sort out complex patterns that shift from person to person, dialect to dialect, and even subject to subject if the conversation is heated or cadence changes to a formal speech being presented...this is much more complex and usually requires more than simply memorizing how a word sounds from one teacher then moving forward with some memorized vocabulary both heard from this teacher in singular isolated form and read to be perhaps slowly listened for and matched to an internal silent pronunciation and making the match you can best discern between what you think you hear and what the words are you know and how they were pronounced for you by one person and outloud by yourself.
To review the video from that talkshow, he clearly is not hesistant in understanding each man, and he not only understands them, he is able to instantly respond. With only a week of listening to the language, something more than memory is involved in the abiltiy to understand it spoken by a native who has set up a condition to trap this man by speaking as a host would to any native speaker on his show and perhaps, even faster. The goal of the show was to showcase his talent or disprove it. The memory, this skill is perhaps not impressive...the ear, there is something going on there. The areas of auditory translation into meaningful content from a language you do not have exposure to is what intrigues me about this man's brain. I would be interested to see him repeat this while in a FMRI with another language.
I cannot recommend a dead language since their would be no expert native speaker, but only a historian of the language...
I think honestly, any non-Latin based language or regional language in an Asiatic country would do, with perhaps a speaker who is uneducated and used the language's grammar incorrectly...that would blow a lot of his abiltiy to memorize the grammar and maybe quickly discern the speakers content w/this and the vocabulary...if it was purposefully used improperly that would be interesting as well. I wonder if he can discern if the speaker is speaking nonsense after one week of learning the grammar, or if he can respond to a variety of skill levels in the language use of different native cadences and speakers.
He should be tested on this skill more.
As idiotic as I sound with my own language, sorry about that by the way, this is what I feel is really worthy of further study unless we desire a study into disproving this is memory and therefore, devise tests to do so w/out a doubt. That would be a interesting challenge for a savant to take on....creating a test that no memory can solve. And a test that cannot be calculated answers in any known savant's current amount of time given highest difficulty of problems.
The hearing of the language so quickly...so effortlessly. I wonder what it takes to do this, and I have suspicion, memorizing the language cannot achieve this alone...something is going on there and perhaps this is his real savant ability that is worthy of his own show. The memory is known skill developed further by many savants...is likely the core of being savant by definition, and reached by obsession and the Autistism that blocks out other sensory input to both protect overload and allow for a manic obsession with a singular object or subject or pattern or method of seeing patterns or memory skills, ect...
You all have wonderful comments, even those we don't all like or seem flippant or boastful. No, I am not a mamby-pamby huggy person. I mean simply, you commented. This is wonderful. No matter what he is or not, what he does or not, how he does it or not and whether he is a scam artist, self-deluding, or simply honest and merits research, he got us up in arms, talking about the mind, venting, laughing at each other, and debating the role of religion in any commentary, and for some of us, settled the persistent myth of what percentage of our brain we use...which I thought had been laid to rest the first time anyone studied a brain lit up in a MRI showing function during image viewing, auditory input, being asked to think of a certain object and then a animal's name....to visualize anything, remember some vivid memory before a certain age, think of a loved one, not think at all, and try not to see a brown cow.
We are really lucky aren't we? To have this medium. I enjoyed this greatly.
Thank you for slamming me as you will probably ahead of time or showing forbearance for my ingnorance and how long this went on. I was highly enthusiastic about all the discussions I read above and how wonderful it was that so many personalities were coming together with varying skill levels and knowledge to blast, applaud, explain, ask, ect.
Bravo to you all for doing something to learn and teach and express in your spare time.
Being better than a machine is by no means intelligence. What matters is what he manages to do with all the information he stores in his brain, and not how much he can store. for those who don't know probability, he could have won those three hands by pure luck. Improbable, but not impossible. And the cameras wouldn't have shown it if he had lost!
Such an interesting person! plus, a kind soul. a real insight into our working brains... the whole colour/texture/number mashup seems to explain a possible source of intuition. The fact that people (and places) give off feelings of textures and colour i can understand... numbers not so much because i was never so good with that language. That seizure did a wonderful thing to this boy, thank goodness he has the intellect to share it with us.
God is great!What an incredible story...
i have to agree with Nietzsche - other that doing math tricks and remembering dates and be lab rats, what do savants do? when they become engineers and physicists and take us to mars and cure cancer then i'll be truly impressed.
are Hawking or Einstein savants or was Darwin one?
and the Japanese abacus children are terrifying ^^
that said i wish them all the best!
Yeah, the 10% of our brain thing always makes me laugh. We do use 100% of our brain but it's not designed to be used as a whole at full strength 100% of the time. This would cause us great confusion (for starters).
It's known that certain parts of our brains allow us to perform tasks designed specifically for that section of the brain. So logic tells us that our "whole" brain doesn't need to be 'fired up' for a simple task like reading this sentence.
10%...lol...we use more than 60% of our brain in REM sleep alone!
"I dont call this guy a scam artist.. but . . .I call this man a sham!"
Perhaps you are intelligent enough to explain the difference to this not-as-intelligent-as-you writer.?
I dont call this guy a scam artist.. but what he does, didnt impress me.. i come from india and here there is a thing called as VEDIC MATHEMATICS. You dont need to remember a number to tell.. PI does have a pattern, just learn VEDIC mathematics and you can say more than 22,000 numbers and iam not joking here.. and abt the languages if one really want to learn a language he can within 7 days......i can only believe him if he can learn and remember the WHOLE dictionary with their meaning of some random foreign language. I call this man a sham!
this guy is amazing aswell as they real rain man
When I first read Durden's comment, it sounded quite negative, but he may be right. I have a verified IQ of 154 and one of my good friends has an IQ of 183 (no bs, he is a hacker who tests government systems), and neither he nor I are able to do what he did, most likely because we have never tried. We would lack the focus to master it. Genius is more defined by the ability to adapt and solve complex problems, than the ability to memorize sequences or language. These people have a disability that causes them to have unbelievable focus on things that normal people to not have the time or energy to expend energy on.
And, by the way, the blackjack example was ridiculous. If he was truly a genius, he would have learned to play poker in a day and played some pros to test his intelligence.
Calculation is something a machine can do. Proving a theorem is not.
It would have been interesting to have learned something of Daniel's mathematical skills, as opposed to learning solely of his startling genius with mere calculations.
Also, this documentary would have been even more intriguing had it gone into depth concerning Daniel's linguistic abilities.
I can't even tell you the meaning of "savants".......and I just watched the damn doc!
PS. I can tell you how many ounces there are in any sized beer can though.
I love this site and can't seem to stop wathing the doc.s
It's amazing how the skills of one person can open up a whole new branch of science and research. There's so much that we don't know.
I think I need to read through my comments before posting them. LOL
let me try this again.
When I watch this doc I could see our minds potential. The reason this seem so incredible is because it is not a major focus in most societies. If it was who knows where we would be?