This is what I looked like on September 19, 2008 during a vacation. Duluth is in the background.
What is your history like?
Last updated: Dec 10, 2005
Moderate update on Jun 24, 2006
Level 0 update on Mar 27, 2008 - group multiplication link fixed
1 Well beyond most everyone else
1.1 The good ol' days
What's 12+6? When I was around five or six years old, according to my parents, I could figure out a question like this without paper and pencil and without a calculator. As time grew on, I got more and more advanced with mathematics. By the time I was in elementary school, I was doing math two full grade levels beyond everyone else was. I recall quite clearly being in the second grade doing fourth grade math. There are very few second graders that could multiply something like 26×38 in anyway without a calculator. In third grade, I was doing fifth-grade math.
1.2 Unusual discoveries
1.2.1 Group multiplication
Try doing this once. Multiply 43×76×52 without doing two at once taking this result and multiplying it by the other digit. Now ask someone who is 13 1/2 years old. I was able to do just that! I've explained the trick so well that almost anyone should be able to understand it. This is that trick explained very clearly (opens a new window). I wondered, if you can add a group of numbers like 43+76+52, can you multiply a group of numbers. During my first year at Triangle YMCA camp, I did just that. I figured out the secret behind it while in the lower floor of the dining place near the swimming pond.
As the story goes, the place is rather empty. There are a few others in here, but not many. I'm near the bathrooms on what appears to be a ground freezer (a freezer that covers more ground space rather than standing upright and otherwise lacks shelves). This freezer is white. I've got a piece of paper and I'm doing some math questions on it. I then put a column of 11's and tried to multiply them. I got 12221 as my first result. When I did the x-0-1 combo, I had two zeros rather than 1 and the x-1-1 had three zeros rather than two and thus the cause to this. I multiplied two elevens together and got 121. I then took that result and multiplied by 11 and got 1331. I then had to find a way to get 1331 and it just so happened to be that I had too many zeros on the end. I repeated for a triplet of 22's. When I tried a triplet of 33's, which had carrying involved, that went okay, but I can vaguely recall this. It was when I tried a triplet of 99's that I came across a problem with carrying. 9×9×9 is 729. I wrote the 9 down, but didn't know what to do with the 7 and the 2. I soon figured out that the remains should be carried over in full (adding 72 on the end rather than 7, 2, or 9). From there, I tried some randomized numbers and it worked out every time. I never knew why it worked out, but it just did and that's all I cared for at the time. It was a great discovery and considering that even some college students wouldn't otherwise know the trick, someone who just finished elementary school figured out the trick!
1.2.2 My quest for shortcuts
Why learn it the hard and slow way when there are tons of shortcuts available? Take the copy trick, the most powerful trick I have. Multiply 46×33 once. Why bother multiplying 46×3 in full twice when you can simply copy your end result? Take the transfer trick (one that's tricky to use for beginners, but sometimes comes in handy). Multiply 48×14 once. I could move a 2 from the 14 to the 48 to change the question into 96×7 making it faster.
For a long time, I've been seeking after mathematical shortcuts mainly with general arithmatic. I have 8 shortcuts for general multiplication, 6 or so involving fractions (such as adding and subtracting fractions with unlike denominators), and I have even more past that. Today, however, I haven't really been after shortcuts as intensely.
2 I became unforunate
2.1 Being babied
After 7th grade, this was the downfall of my special mathematical abilities. I was no longer keeping far ahead of everyone else. In 7th grade, I learned algebra. In 8th grade, I took that same class again (even with the same teacher). In 9th grade, it was algebra again. It seemed like I was locked with algebra rather than advancing to triginometry, calculus, and other higher math fields. In the early part of my 10th grade year, I was, quite literally, being babied. Tenth grade doing 4th or 5th grade math when, in 4th grade, I was doing 6th grade math? This really doesn't add up at all. Oddly enough, the school I went to for my 10th grade year and beyond never had anything higher than advanced algebra. They had geometry, but no triginometry, or calculus. I would've almost certainly wanted to take such a course, but never had the chance to.
2.2 A small ray of hope
With the internet, and the forums, I have a small ray of hope. With college costing nearly $4000+ a year, way too much for anyone in my family to afford, college is out of the question. The internet has so much to it, you never know what you'll find. Wanna learn something new, just do a random Google search for something you wanna know about and you're likely to find thousands of results, even a few million. I just don't seem to have the motive or ambition to doing it, even though I'm on the computer at least 12 hours a day on average.
3 Super fast mental math
3.1 The wonders I can do in my mind
Imagine multiplying a pair of random two-digit numbers using only your mind and doing it within 20 seconds. That is just how strong my mental math abilities are. With my numerous shortcuts available and other tricks, this becomes very easily possible. Most couldn't bother doing square roots in their head, but I, within 20 seconds, can get the first two digits correct with the third often only 1 off and thus three significant figures of precision. Even complex division and even working out formulas are things I can process in my mind with great accuracy. When shopping, I sometimes even help customers get the best deals and they become surprised on how fast I'm mentally processing the math. With 5 products on the shelf of various sizes and brands, I can figure out the cheapest by the unit within 3 minutes, much faster than most anyone else could and I don't even carry paper and pencil or even a calculator! Throw in coupons and complex deals (such as buy 2, get the third half off), I can still process it in my mind at a phenomenal speed to most.
Today, I could, almost literally, process every single question in a 4th grade or 5th grade math book using only my mind for the calculations. With all my math shortcuts, I could almost do an entire 4th grade math book in my mind only and within 2 months (assuming the typical 6-hour school day).
3.2 Mental math processing for no reason
Sometimes, when waiting for something or someone, and can't do anything else, I look around for things to process mathematically in my mind. One example is where I had a speedometer in a car showing all numbers in multiples of 10 from 0 to 100 and I wanted to know what all that multiplied out to (excluding the 0, but going with 10, 20, 30, etc.). Within 15 minutes, I had the answer. I wrote down my answer and punched it into the calculator on my computer and I was correct with it.
3.3 Games and math
3.3.1 Physical games
In the real world, I often turn some setting into some sort of video game. While "moving the player character", I can very accurately determine positions, accelerations, and all that other stuff some would find otherwise impossible to do accurate. When I run into uncertainty, I process more carefully and more slowly. If, for example, I used my hand as my "player" and jumped from one ledge to another, I can process that jump quite accurately.
3.3.2 Computer games
When I had my severe video game addiction before 2001, I was able to play the games as they were and very accurately mimic the game mechanics, something I still do to some extent today. I play a game enough to understand the game mechanics (even just one day is enough for most Playstation games, one hour for NES type games) and I could play the game in my mind. I could even take other levels from different games and merge the mechanics of one game to another. That is, if I were to have the game mechanics of the classic Sonic games put into, say, level 7 in Bubsy, I could do just that.
3.3.3 My mind game
My mind game, simply a game-like system in my mind, involves lots of math as well. When rendering the scenes, I use a lot of math. When, for example, I jump, I can very realistically process the deceleration. Even from 50 mph decelerating at my typical 80 mph per second I use, or getting thrown up at over 900 mph, I can very realistically and accurately process the scene in my mind and actually get a good feel for the motion along with it.
4 Everything has numbers, lots of them
Whether drawing, typing, driving, or watching TV, you may not think of these things as having numerical values or doing any calculations with them. I'm different in the way I see numbers in everything, several numbers. They are most commonly as ratios, fractions, percentages, and angles (often as slope ratios). Direct measurements are also used but not as frequently, and when used, they are almost always estimates.
4.1 Numbers in words and letters
You may not see how, but the word "example" has more than 20 numbers in it to me. 7, 5, 24, 1, 13, 16, 12, and 5 are probably the 8 easiest to make out. "Example" has 7 letters which is where the 7 comes from. The others are related to the position in the alphabet. E is the 5th letter of the alphabet, X is 24, A is 1, M is 13, P is 16, L is 12, and E, again, is 5. Another 7 comes from the rarity values of each letter. These numbers are, in the same order, 1, 11, 1, 4, 3, 1, then 1. X is rare and that's the 11. Another 8 come from the compatibility (how much I like each letter and the word as a whole), mostly as 1's (for neutral). The X is a 12, the M is a 1.5, the P is a -18, and the L is a -1.2. The others are 1's, including the one for the word as a whole. When I spell the word "example", the 7 is the first thing that comes to mind, after the number of letters it has. The next 7 are the letter positions in the alphabet, but are largely ignored. The final 15 are almost always ignored. Getting the number of letters correct when spelling a word is the easiest part to me, unless the number associated with the word's letter count is wrong. I frequently spell "necessary" as "neccessary" with two C's, but it's the 9 that tells of using only 1 C.
4.2 Numbers in artwork and scenes
Numbers aren't just in words either. A photo may have thousands of numbers - colors, angles, sizes, ratios, percentages, and the occasional direct measurement. Almost everything I see, whether in a photo, for real, or in my mind or in my dreams, they all have numbers. To you, the color red is just red. To me, it's 255, 0, 0, and possibly another 255 (or commonly as FF0000 or FFFF0000). I've since become very skilled with putting numbers into colors that I've become skilled in artwork as well. To me, artwork involves doing calculations, frequently calculating colors. I've got numerous formulas for calculating colors, most of which a derivative of a single "master" formula. Look at a compact disk once. What do you see? A circle with a hole in the middle? I see this as well, but I also see numbers: 3:1 (a ratio - the diameter of the center circle to the diameter of the clear area before the data part), 1/2 (direct measurement, the interior size of the hole, in inches), 3:1 (another ratio - that of the diameter of the disk itself to that of the diameter of the clear area, and 9:1 (yet another ratio - that of the diameter of the full CD to the center hole). Given this, I'd suspect that the disk is 4 1/2 inches in diameter (after the 1/2 multiplied by the 9:1 ratio). Another number is 1/16 (a direct measurement for the height of the disk, in inches), along with 3 infinities (infinity, technically, is not a number; this comes from the number of angles that make up the disk, infinity means a circle). This doesn't include any images or text on the disk as that would add hundreds or even thousands of extra numbers.
When I do artwork, I use numbers. In order for me to draw that compact disk, I need to get the numbers it has otherwise it would be highly inaccurate. The direct measurements come first such as the 1/2. This relates to the interior hole. It has a color of 00000000 (fully transparent black). The clear area, which actually isn't truly clear, has a color of something like 10A0A0A0. With the 3:1 ratio, I know I need to make it 3 times the diameter of the interior hole or 1 1/2 inches. For the image part of it, however, we'll just say it's all white without any text or any textures/patterns. The color would be FFFFFFFF (fully opaque white). The 9:1 and 3:1 ratios tell me how big it needs to be. I'm better off with the smaller values so I tend to use the 3:1 so I take the 1 1/2 value and multiply it by 3 to get 4 1/2. This gives me the final result. I use the 9:1 as a simple check. If I was to draw a shadow for it, I'd use the 1/16 direct measurement, then I'd have two angles that define the light source on the horizonal and vertical. Another number is a roughness value which is where I get noisemaps in my images from. This is a percentage. A CD has a very low number, something like an 8 or 16.
All that work for just a simple CD. It may seem like a lot, but I go through it quite quickly. A scene like this, however, takes several hundred numbers, almost a thousand.
What the remade version of my first program was like (on Apr 24, 2007)
To make this scene, I had numerous lighting calculations (the houses and buildings used up a lot of these), calculations for the intensity of the fog, a sine curve for the sky fade, calculations to get accurate size measurements, and more to find the scaling/distance along with actual distances. From my visions, I turned them into numbers to accurately copy them.
4.3 Numbers in music
To most, the duration of a note is about as close as you can get. I don't measure notes by the quarter, half, etc. I base it off the 1/16 note. That is, a 1/16 note has a value of 1. A quarter note has a value of 4 since it takes four 1/16 notes to make up a quarter note. A 1/32 note has a value of 1/2. A 3/4 time signature indicates to me that, when making music, there should be a total value of 12 for the given measure. From a group of notes making a measure to a group of measures making a part (a part is a group of measures in a song with a similar style of play), to a group of parts making up a whole song, there are numbers everywhere. There's the usual compatibility values, but there's others such as the values of the notes, time signature, number of measures for each part, the number of parts, favorite speeds, current speed relative to true speed, and several others.
4.4 Numbers in my dreams
Numbers written in text are very rarely seen in my dreams. However, when I recall them, I recall both the scene and the numbers the scene has. This is how I get measurements. I see a room as having a 5:8 ratio but at 80 feet wide (on the side with the 5) without a source, it's very inaccurate. If there's a table in there that is 5 feet in diameter, I can more accurately get the room measurement since I may have a 15:1 ratio giving 75 feet for the width and 120 for the length. This is how I get the dimensions. Someone in the dream is another worthy source, but only useful for the vertical. For gauging speeds and heights, that's where my mind game comes in. I'm used of speeds to 400 mph in my mind game and sort of used to speeds to up to 900 mph. As usual, I use objects to get a reference on actual sizes. I then, in my mind game, repeat the scene recalled in my dream. If that's not available, times usually are and again, it's using the numbers in objects to get it and even then, it's still fairly accurate. Heights are very similar except I use my mind game to sort of pan the "camera" around for similar vantage points. The occasional simulation also helps. Jumping 90 feet high is a very common thing in my mind game and easy to reproduce.
4.5 Numbers = skill
With my ability of seeing numerical values in objects, I can use this to become skilled at almost anything. For example, without using numbers, I'm bad at artwork. When I do use numbers, I can become skilled at it (look at the image above). It's not just artwork, it's practically anything, whether driving, writing details on my dreams, playing a game (I study game mechanics sometimes right down to the mathematical algorithms used and I exploit this in many ways), buying items (sorting compatibilies and motives is the most common, more common than price), troubleshooting problems, probably even careers. Getting the numbers is only a small part of it. Learning how to use them is the biggest part. That's where all the numerous formulas come in with colors in artwork - fog, transparency, lighting, anti-aliasing, you name it. This is the reason why I tend to use numbers for almost everything, even in speech or communications. It's difficult for me to explain things without having to have numbers.
5 The future
The near future doesn't have much in store as I see it. Sure I may get a new formula or two or even discover a new shortcut, but I don't really see much changing anytime soon. Obvious differences is that I'll likely be able to mentally process mathematics even faster.
By about five years from now, there might be signs of change. I may have a bunch more formulas and a few more shortcuts handy, and I may have finally gained the motive/ambition to learn trig or calculus. Doubtful, although possible, I could be teaching others math in general, even my shortcuts.
The far future remains highly uncertain. There may be a chance, however, that I could be teaching math, but the chances are highly uncertain.
4.1 About me home - General overview and background
4.1-1 What this is
4.1-2 My current life
4.1-3 The future
4.2 Dream journal - My dreams I get while sleeping - contains over 500 dreams and grows rapidly
4.2-2 Special notes
4.2-3 Dream stat descriptions
4.2-4 Dream statistics
4.2-5 The categories
4.3 Favorites - What I like and dislike most
4.4 Imaginary friends - Learn what my imaginary friends were like and their special abilities
4.4-2 In depth descriptions
4.4-3 The future
4.5 Video games - My history with video games and the many bad things they caused
4.5-1 The beginning
4.5-2 Too much video game playing
4.5-3 Making my own games
4.5-4 The future
4.6 School - Learn what school was like for me, how the classes went, and other events related to school
4.6-1 Elementary school
4.6-2 Middle school
4.6-3 High school
4.6-4 Filling my need for education
4.6-5 My education future
4.7 Special events - Learn about how YMCA camp, tours, and other special events went for me
4.7-1 Triangle YMCA camp
4.7-2 Touring my home state with my friend
4.7-3 Shakespearian play
4.7-4 The state fair
4.7-5 The antique car club
4.7-6 Trip into Canada
4.8 Math skills - I can work wonders with numbers and perform calculations in my head at a blazing fast speed
4.8-1 Well beyond most everyone else
4.8-2 I became unforunate
4.8-3 Super fast mental math
4.8-4 If object gets numbers, I get a formula
4.8-5 The future
4.9 Special abilities - The special capabilities I have outside mathematics
4.9-3 High-speed, high-accuracy mental math
4.9-4 High-res vision
4.10 Developed systems - Status System, Spell System and other systems I've developed
4.10-1 My Status System
4.10-2 My Spell System
4.10-3 Color system
4.11 Stories - The birth of my story-writing efforts
4.11-1 The "Wonderful Adventure" days
4.11-2 The "Rise of Atlantis" days
4.11-3 One other story
4.11-4 No more story writing
4.11-5 My sources of ideas
4.11-6 The future (general)
4.12 Online activities - The history of my website and the usage of online forums
4.12-1 Online forums
4.12-2 My website
4.13 Music - My history with music - learn the origins to why I listen to songs at different speeds for thousands of loops at a time
4.13-2 The present
4.13-3 The future
4.13-4 Music FAQs
4.14 Major fears - My list of fears, problems, and obsessions, both past and present
4.14-2 Current fears
4.14-3 Old fears that have been overcome
4.14-4 Current problems
4.14-5 Old problems that have been overcome
4.14-6 Current obsessions
4.14-7 Old obsessions
4.15 Major issues - Major issues I have in my life at the moment
4.15-1 Fears, problems, and obsessions
4.15-2 Sleep-wake cycle
4.15-3 No transportation
4.15-4 Showers are rare
4.15-5 My annoying nose
4.15-6 Limited choice of foods
4.15-7 Getting a job
4.16 TV and movies - How I am with watching TV and movies, both past and present
4.16-2 The present
4.16-3 The future
4.17 Food and drink - My history with food and drink, including past meals I made, as well as the present and future
4.17-2 The present
4.17-3 The future
4.18 Travel and vacations - Past vacations and travel, as well as the current case of 6+ years without a vacation, including places of interest
4.18-2 The present
4.18-3 The future
4.19 My senses - Things involving my 5 main senses - strong, high-res vision, but very weak smell to name some
4.19- [document yet to be created]
4.20 Doctors and meds - My past involving doctor visits and meds to fixing my issues as well as the present
4.20- [document yet to be created]
4.21 Hobbies - My hobbies, including things I was involved with in the past not in any other category
4.21-6 The present
4.21-7 The future
4.22 Game design - My history of game design as well as the present and possible future
4.22-2 The present
4.22-3 The future
4.23 Noncomputer games - Backgrounds on various noncomputer games, such as throwing cards to play Hit-a-bump and other things, including past games not listed on my website, as well as general evolvements and what caused me to create them.
4.23- [document yet to be created]
4.24 Other memorable events - General events I recall unusually well, but not anything special
4.24- [document yet to be created]
4.25 Other things - Dates, marriage, having kids, friends, religion, holidays, and various other things
4.25- [document yet to be created]
4.26 Myself in the year 2050 - How I envision myself and a day in the year 2050
4.26- [document yet to be created]
4.27 My greatest wishes - Activities I would love to do