A Savant With Insight

This guy was on 60 minutes this past Sunday.

That theory fits well with Daniel. At the age of four, he suffered a massive epileptic seizure. He believes that seizure contributed to his condition. Numbers were no longer simply numbers and he had developed a rare crossing of the senses known as synesthesia.

"I see numbers in my head as colors and shapes and textures. So when I see a long sequence, the sequence forms landscapes in my mind," Tammet explains. "Every number up to 10,000, I can visualize in this way, has it's own color, has it's own shape, has it's own texture."

For example, when Daniel says he sees Pi, he does those instant computations, he is not calculating, but says the answer simply appears to him as a landscape of colorful shapes.

"The shapes aren't static. They're full of color. They're full of texture. In a sense, they're full of life," he says.

Asked if they’re beautiful, Tammet says, "Not all of them. Some of them are ugly. 289 is an ugly number. I don't like it very much. Whereas 333, for example, is beautiful to me. It's round. It's…."

"Chubby," Safer remarks.

'It's—yes. It's chubby,' Tammet agrees.

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