Super Genius Nicknamed “The Human Computer” Due To This Rare Condition

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Have you ever wondered what it would be like to know everything? Well, Daniel Tammet comes pretty close. Diagnosed with an unusual medical condition, the 40-year-old Londoner can speak 10 different languages, solve any math problem, and understand any concept. Read on to find out how he does it…

Born Different

Daniel Tammet always knew he was a little unique. Born in East London to two hardworking parents, he began suffering seizures as a child, though he eventually grew out of them. But there were other unusual instances in his youth…

Collectors Edition

Growing up, he obsessively collected anything and everything. Once he saw a ladybug and started scouring hedges and trees hoping to find another. It wasn’t long before he had a few hundred. His teachers didn’t know what to make of all this…

Family Bonding

It was Daniel’s older brother who saw something special in him. He asked his younger brother to solve 82 x 82 x 82 x 82. After only a few seconds, Daniel said the answer: 45,212,176. The kid was a genius, but this talent came at a cost…

Something Strange

Doctors said he exhibited detrimental behaviors as a result of his high intelligence, like difficulty socializing and understanding social cues. However, he was excelling in school. He won awards as early as age 11. He had a love for learning, and the way he learned was unlike anything his teachers had ever seen…

Singing Along

Surprising to both himself and his teachers, he was happiest in assemblies and choir practices. “I loved assembly because we got to sing hymns,” he remembered, “The notes formed a pattern in my head, just like the numbers did.” Numbers became a pattern for Daniel…

Ladybird Patterns

It was when he received a Ladybird counting book that he first noticed he was thinking differently than others. “When I looked at the numbers I ‘saw’ images. […] I would sit on the floor in my bedroom and just count. I didn’t notice that time was passing.” But time was indeed passing, and it wasn’t long until the boy genius was all grown up…

College Years

At Open University in the United Kingdom, he triple-majored in French, German, and History. It only took him two years to graduate. After school, he became a teacher in Lithuania for a year, but he didn’t feel challenged enough…

Piece of the Pi

Tammet was launched into the public eye with his impressive feat of memory. At the Museum of the History of Science in Oxford, the savant set a world record for reciting the digits of pi. Daniel was able to recall 22,514 decimal places, taking over 5 hours to get through it all. But how and why was he so unique?

An Answer

After 25 years of wondering why he was unlike his peers, Daniel Tammet got his answer. Simon-Baron Cohen from the University of Cambridge Autism Research Center was able to diagnose him with high-functioning autistic savant syndrome. This explained so much…

Erratic Explanations

Though he could recite pi for hours and do any calculation at the top of his head, Tammet always struggled telling right from left. He could barely drive. He couldn’t wire a plug. Suddenly, the weird plagues of his life made sense…

Autistic Savant Syndrome

Many who have the condition suffered some sort of brain trauma early in life. For Daniel, his childhood epileptic fits unlocked the brainpower. He is one of only a few hundred who have ever been diagnosed with the syndrome, but he had another diagnosis coming his way soon…

Hearing Colors

Baron-Cohen wasn’t done with his subject quite yet. After some additional tests, he determined that Tammet also had synaesthesia, a condition that causes some to be able to assign colors, sounds, or shapes to abstract thought...

Tammet’s Conditions

For Tammet, synaesthesia meant he assigned colors and shapes to numbers. This made his method for understanding math concepts very unique. He could understand abstract concepts and big mathematical equations, but he couldn’t understand people, especially himself…

Name Change

Eventually, Daniel Paul Corney decided to change his surname. Using a deed poll, he went from a ‘Corney’ to a ‘Tammet’. “It means oak tree in Estonian, and I liked that association,” he said “Besides, I’ve always had a love of Estonian. Such a vowel rich language.” His love for learning was endless, but his love life was only getting started…

Online Love

Being a smart celebrity was a lonely life. In early 2000, fed up with his love life, Daniel turned to the internet. He began emailing with a man named Neil. It wasn’t long before to the love birds wanted to meet in person…

Driving Daniel

Since Daniel can’t drive, Neil picked him up for their first date. He was silent the entire drive, and Daniel was worried the date wasn’t going well. All that time, wasted on bad chemistry…

Floral Affection

While Daniel was stressing about the date, Neil was stressing about the road. As it turns out, Neil is just a quiet driver. Once they reached their destination, Neil pulled out a bouquet of flowers for his date. Their life together was only just getting started…

Making Optimnem

Daniel had a passion for language, able to speak 10 himself. With the help of engineer and boyfriend Neil Mitchell, the pair started a company called Optimnem. The service allowed users to quickly and easily learn languages, which gave him another amazing idea…

Speaking in Tongues

If you ever want to learn a new language, consider Manti. The language is one that was developed by Tammet himself in 2006. It is similar to the Finnic language and has heavy use of accents. He was achieving new heights with his work, but new lows in his relationship…

Unempathetic

Neil was a lot like his partner. Both are shy, smart, and happy with a quiet life. However, they had problems. Because of Tammet’s autism, he has difficulty showing empathy. The lack of understanding from a partner wore on Neil over the years…

Falling Out of Love

After a while, their differences became too much. The pair split after years of living together. Desperate for some stability in this trying time, Daniel threw himself back into his writing…

Born On a Blue Day

Tammet’s first book chronicled his life as one of the smartest people alive. Born on a Blue Day: Inside the Extraordinary Mind of an Autistic Savant received widespread praise and became an instant bestseller. People couldn’t get enough of the savant…

Rave Reviews

The book received widespread praise. It was named the Best Book for Young Adults and has sold over 500,000 copies worldwide. His success wouldn’t stop there though…

A Niche in Neuroscience

His next book, Embracing the Wide Sky, explored his personal neurological inconsistencies. This received similarly high praises. His story was getting attention, and soon, he would be making it on the big screen…

Silver Screen Savant

It wasn’t long before Channel 4 wanted to spotlight the man with the perfect brain. He was the subject of the documentary Extraordinary People: The Boy with the Incredible Brain. He was the focus of the world, but there was no one special in his world…

A New Beginning

Daniel didn’t let his break up from Neil stop him from trying again. When he was publishing the autobiographical book, Daniel met photographer Jerome Tabet. There was an instant connection…

Moving On and Out

The two relocated to Paris, France. From there, the words and inspiration poured out of Daniel, and his work started coming to life. Everything was falling into place…

Branching Out

While he was in love with patterns and numbers, Tammet wanted to challenge himself. He began writing and researching poetry, essays, and novels. It was in 2016 that he first wrote a novel separate from his condition. Mishenka was a hit, and Tammet began to look even further outside his comfort zone…

From Pi to Poet

Next, he wrote a collection of essays on language titled Every Word Is a Bird We Teach to Sing. Critics noted that Daniel displayed “a grasp of language and a sweep of vocabulary that any poet would envy.” That wouldn’t be his only impressive feat…

An Interpreter

For savants, their impressive abilities are often unable to be communicated. Only they know how their brains work, and explaining can be difficult. For Daniel though, he developed self-awareness and is able to explain how he developed his patterns of thought, helping researchers to discover how savants are made…

An Everyman

Daniel has written his own language, written several books, made movies, songs, translations, and more. It’s only up from here!

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