Brewtown Politico

Carrying a little stick and speaking loudly in Milwaukee

2.28.2005

Meet the real Rain Man: He inspired a movie and now he is reaching for the sky with NASA

"Kim has read more than 9,000 books and memorised them with his photographic mind.

Unlike any other savant known to the world scientific community, Kim can read a page with each eye simultaneously, even if the book is upside down or sideways."


I read an article about Kim Peek in an issue of The Week, and found it fascinating. At age 3, Kim asked his father Fran what the word "confidential" meant. When his father jokingly told him to look it up in a dictionary, Kim crawled to the desk and found the word within 30 seconds. By age 4 1/2, he had memorized the first eight volumes of a set of encyclopedias.

"Kim was born with an unusually large head and a water blister inside his skull that damaged the left hemisphere, which controls language and motor skills. And in 1988, when he was given his first scan, his neuroscientist was shocked to discover that Kim has no corpus callosum, the membrane that separates the two hemispheres of the brain. Scientists want to find out whether Kim’s brain is fused into one huge databank or whether he has the equivalent of two brains separately processing phenomenal quantities of information — but with little reasoning."

1 Comments:

At 3/01/2005 12:40:00 AM, Blogger Dean said...

I read the same article and was fascinated also. Quite the man. His father was something else too.

 

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