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Are any of you savants?

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CCninja86

I actually am as far as I'm aware. I have Asperger's Syndrome and a Photographic Memory (Eidetic Memory). I still remember lots of small details of a reception room I sat in for 5 minutes months ago, like how many parcels were sitting on the floor behind the counter, which position the light switches were in inside the room on the left, the colour and first two letters of the car parked on the opposite side of the street, and more. I also remember some details from some pictures of paintings I saw at about the same time, and a license plate number I saw at least a month or two ago. I can sort of just visualise these details, they kind of just 'flash' in my mind when I try to recall them.

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Dr-David-Banner

There is basically a trade-off with nature. If, like me, you have very bad myopia you find your hearing will develop to buffer the defect. I think if mental illness leaves you on the brink of sanity, you become open to unusual ability or senses. One of mine is an enhanced connection to animals and ability to understand what they require. It arises through being disconnected from people and so the dogs, for example, sense it. I've had dogs that won't now take food from anyone else, unless I'm there and I've no idea why this is. Also being so close to dogs I found they have amazing senses. In my case I have very limited connection to other people to the point efforts to hold down most jobs are stressful or I get dismissed usually. However, I got some things back in return like memory and concentration. Also the mind can disconnect from the collective waveband leaving you free to explore different avenues. N.Ts are way too influenced by teachers and status figures to the point they exhibit impressive technical ability but reluctance to stray from the accepted path. I find most NTs to be like a needle following the groove of a vinyl record so progress from "A" to "B" is rigid, constrained, tracked and fixed. With mentally ill people the needle just shoots off the disk to the point of disfuntion. With Savants the record can't be played in the same fixed pattern.

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Sanctuary

I'm not a savant but I can do calendrical calculation which some savants can do. This means I can tell instantly what day of the week a date occurred going back over 250 years and to the end of this century, e.g 7 March 1917 was a Wednesday while 7 March 1817 was a Friday. I don't need to check a reference source or use a mathematical formula. Savants who can do this can do it though over a much larger time span and do other remarkable mathematical feats such as complex calculations in their heads. Calendrical calculation is a pretty useless "skill". People can be quite impressed when I tell them what day of the week they were born on and think it's some sort of "magic" but there is a system. Whenever I see a date I can't help but instantly work out the day of the week it was on. I like being able to do this but it's not something of much practical value.

The skills of mathematical savants are extraordinary but ultimately they're not at the cutting edge of maths or skills with great practical use these days. Being able to do complex calculations is remarkable but in the era of the calculator there's no real need for such an ability. Knowing Pi to thousands of places is similarly impressive but a computer can also supply the answer instantly to many more places. I think it's also often the case that mathematical savants tend to only have this ability in arithmetic and may not have exceptional skills in geometry, algebra or other areas of maths. They may also not be exceptional in solving mathematical problems which require lots of analysis - they are essentially "human calculators". This is not to downplay their skills, just to say they are not ultimately of the greatest complexity or use.

Artistic and musical savants have different but equally exceptional skills, e.g. to produce an impeccably accurate sketch of something they have only seen briefly or to play note-perfect a tune they have only heard once. These skills may have more utility but again may not be the ones which make someone a genuinely great artist or musician. Their skill may be more in reproducing than in creating. For example their work may not show much creative flair or innovation and therefore they would be unlikely to reach the top of those professions.

People who are exceptional mathematicians in the broadest sense will generally not be able to do the things the savants can. For example they won't be able to do complex calculations in their heads or recall Pi to hundreds or thousands of places but they would say they don't need to. Instead they will have the higher level skills across the whole subject to figure out the most perplexing problems. Our best artists and musicians will also not be able to do perfect reproductions but they would argue that is not what art and music are about - they are about innovation. Some of these very talented mathematicians, artists and musicians may also have autistic traits but they take them in a different direction to the savants. Ultimately savant skills are rare and probably most of interest to psychologists and neurologists than to wider society.  

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Dr-David-Banner

My closest savant ability will be music as I find it easy in as much as it's fun and not work. I can now come pretty close to working out the chords to most songs purely by ear. I will find the chord easily note by note but don't know the names of the chords, except G, G Minor and C. More unusually if an artist has based a melody on another song, I can hear the original song by the chord pattern. I've been known to then google the possible connection and confirm the artist had heard that original melody.
Electronics which I now do didn't come easily and I had my share of mental blocks. With that I had to actually work harder than most people to improve. I figured it was worth the effort to persist.
Oddly I'm good at languages but maybe the way I learn is unorthodox as I tend to create a system of bookish, formal communication - not the way people speak. I have a very odd Savant ability to be able to read a person's language structure at the individual level - like a blueprint. Only if it's a second language. It doesn't work in English for me. For example, we all use adverbs in a certain way or certain preferred words. Or conjunctions.
When I joined a Russian electronics forum I was curious if anyone would notice anything odd about my language. I mean, you don't usually get foreigners on these Russified sites. I tend to use a search engine as a grammar check especially as Russian has case endings. I try to get it spot on before posting. I'm sure they must have noticed something but nobody said, "Hey, are you Georgian or from Belarus?" The first time I posted the answers I got contained vocabulary I'd never heard, maybe more street language.

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.......

I have a 'Savant ability' in water. Almost like I can make it do what I want.. Although, if anyone spends enough time around water, they'll get the same ability..

 

I also have an multi dimensional picture of the universe in my head - it can be VERY frustrating when nobody else seems to get the model. It can be used to do anything in your hearts desire - a connection to 'All the knowledge in the Universe'..... 

 

 

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.......
On 6/28/2016 at 11:39 AM, CCninja86 said:

I actually am as far as I'm aware. I have Asperger's Syndrome and a Photographic Memory (Eidetic Memory). I still remember lots of small details of a reception room I sat in for 5 minutes months ago, like how many parcels were sitting on the floor behind the counter, which position the light switches were in inside the room on the left, the colour and first two letters of the car parked on the opposite side of the street, and more. I also remember some details from some pictures of paintings I saw at about the same time, and a license plate number I saw at least a month or two ago. I can sort of just visualise these details, they kind of just 'flash' in my mind when I try to recall them.

Yeah - I have the eidetic mind. Thats whats so frustrating at times. I can see whats gonna happen a few moments before it does happen just by looking inwards... So I will see an NT about to make a big mistake, try to warn them, they don't get it and then bang! Like watching a car crash and being able to stop it but the passengers don't want you to help them stay alive. :(

Its like a holographic virtual reality that I can refer to to get answers about up and coming tasks. 

 

I guess you could say that - Passing is a Savant ability?? Being Autistic all your life but nobody notices, not even yourself. ??

 

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Dr-David-Banner

I think the big guy John Caffrey in The Green Mile was supposed to be a savant. Some savants appear simple but have unusual insight. Take Muhammad Ali the former heavyweight champion. He'd failed his basic school exams and was an academic failure. Yet really he struck me as exceptionally intelligent and principled. For a start he boxed in a way the experts had sworn was totally wrong, with his hands low. He boxed in retreat with his legs doing much of the speed work. Then there was that rope-a-dope when he was older - laying on the ropes and letting George Foreman exhaust himself. Add to that his stance on Vietnam and the courage to refuse induction into the armed forces. Even his religion was genuine in the way he developed it rather than just following scriptures. He was a muslim who had Jewish and Christian friends, black and white friends too. The film with Will Smith is well worth seeing.

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Catman2018

I am an autistic artistic savant.

Edited by Catman2016

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Dr-David-Banner

I have been experiencing strange sleep phenomena. It started by solving maths in my sleep so the maths became easier. The women on the Russian forum were fascinated as there is a story about a Russian chemist who solved a problem in his sleep. Having been kicked off all the UK engineering sites and told I am pretty hopeless at it, I am now building receivers. Also gradually changing design. Last night I dreamed of an experiment and today decided to just do exactly as I dreamed. And it worked. I am on an American site now and so far have been made welcome. It may be that will change but I hope I don't get jeered off. 

 

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