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Lightning Calculators
http://www.heinleinsociety.org/thsnexus/viewtopic.php?f=11&t=1099
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Author:  BillMullins [ Mon Aug 01, 2011 9:03 am ]
Post subject:  Lightning Calculators

Lightning Calculators show up several times in Heinlein's works (Max Jones, Andrew Jackson Libby, etc).

Those interested in the subject may find THIS useful.

Author:  Blackhawk [ Mon Aug 01, 2011 10:38 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Lightning Calculators

Max Jones was not a lightning calculator. He had perfect recall but he fed what he recalled into a computer to do the calculations.

Author:  DavidWrightSr [ Mon Aug 01, 2011 11:23 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Lightning Calculators

Whether or not he was a 'lightning calculator', he was able to perform all of the calculations in his head. That was how he caught Simes' mistake at the crucial point.
Quote:
He had plenty of time to work not only his own problems, but those of Simes. The data came out orally and there was nothing to keep Max from programming Simes' sights in his head and checking on what went into the computer.

Author:  Blackhawk [ Mon Aug 01, 2011 2:29 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Lightning Calculators

Good point. I'd forgotten that part. What I remembered was his photographic memory that let him recall the complete texts of his uncle's astrogation books.

Author:  holmesiv [ Mon Aug 01, 2011 6:57 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Lightning Calculators

DavidWrightSr wrote:
Whether or not he was a 'lightning calculator', he was able to perform all of the calculations in his head. That was how he caught Simes' mistake at the crucial point.
Quote:
He had plenty of time to work not only his own problems, but those of Simes. The data came out orally and there was nothing to keep Max from programming Simes' sights in his head and checking on what went into the computer.


I believe he did not do the calculation, but remembered the number sequence perfectly from the bool.
Answers in the back, haha!

Author:  RobertPearson [ Mon Aug 08, 2011 11:14 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Lightning Calculators

I recently read the book Moonwalking With Einstein and think it's fascinating that the skills of the so-called "savants" to both memorize and calculate can be learned to a large degree. Not true eidetic memory or calculation to the level of "Rain Man" but a good bit in that direction. Any normal person can, for instance, memorize a 52-card deck after perhaps 10-15 hours of practice. I'm working on it right now, and can feel a certain uptick in my overall functioning just from the mental excercise.

Author:  holmesiv [ Fri Aug 12, 2011 4:48 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Lightning Calculators

RobertPearson wrote:
I recently read the book Moonwalking With Einstein and think it's fascinating that the skills of the so-called "savants" to both memorize and calculate can be learned to a large degree. Not true eidetic memory or calculation to the level of "Rain Man" but a good bit in that direction. Any normal person can, for instance, memorize a 52-card deck after perhaps 10-15 hours of practice. I'm working on it right now, and can feel a certain uptick in my overall functioning just from the mental excercise.


Well, there is Renshawing, and it is real. Don't know why the public and private schools don't all teach it in the first grade. We'd be so far ahead of China and India if we did they'd never catch up!

Author:  VeraLenora [ Sun Mar 10, 2013 3:59 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Lightning Calculators

I saw a TV program (sorry don't remember any details) that had a 'lightning calculator' work while inside an MMI. Turned out his mathematical work was being done in the area of the brain usually used only for language.
The researchers speculated that the math was being done just as humans normally talk, without any need for conscious mental sortings of subtlety, choice of words, grammar, syntax, and so on. We just talk.

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