Re: Fwd: Evolving Geeks?

From: Spike Jones (
Date: Tue Jan 22 2002 - 21:38:11 MST

"Chen Yixiong, Eric" wrote:

> Argument For Autism as a Genetic 'Epidemic'
> "Have the airplane and the computer changed the architecture of the
> mind? And is that why autism is on the increase?"
> By Simon Baron-Cohen

Wow! Great article, thanks Chen!

> This is not to say that all computer-scientists lack social skill. Far
> from it. We all know computer-scientists who are good socializers. Nor is it
> to say that those severely affected by autism could suddenly shift and
> become a successful programmer. But those who had a dash of autism could.

I find this to be the hardest part of being a nerd. Everyone expects
you to be good with computers.

> No longer the socially isolated, unemployed, "weird" guy who could
> list every prime number up to 10,000 in minutes, but who couldn't have even
> a semblance of a conversation with a girl at a party.

Hes going to the wrong parties. I was at a Mersenne prime party last
month. Girls at that party would have been impressed by the recitation,
as would I, being as there are 1129 such numbers, depending on whether
you count one as the first prime or the zeroeth prime.

We had quite an argument over this at the Mersenne party. A prime
is a number whose only factors are itself and one. But in the case
of one, one itself is itself itself. So I proposed referring to 2 as the first
prime and one as the "prime prime". Or if you are French and like
to switch your noun and adjective, then it would be the "prime prime."
It gets very Hofstadterian.

But I digress. The solution would be to find a geek girl who loves primes,
then recite away. Of course these are rare and highly valued women.
At the Mersenne party there were only two women and I am married
to one of them. The other one looked like she was seriously trying to
decide if this particular salary she was married to was worth having
to attend such dweebfests. spike

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.5 : Fri Nov 01 2002 - 13:37:36 MST