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12-Year-Old Rewrites Einstein's Theory of Relativity

samzenpus posted more than 3 years ago | from the but-is-he-any-good-at-kickball? dept.

Math 588

rhathar writes "A 12-year-old boy by the name of Jacob Barnett is a math genius. Mastering many college level astrophysics courses by the age of 8, he now works on his most ambitious project to date: his own 'expanded version of Einstein's theory of relativity.'"

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Primary Source (5, Informative)

dtmos (447842) | more than 3 years ago | (#35641656)

The Indianapolis Star [indystar.com]

Re:Primary Source (2, Insightful)

xTantrum (919048) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642192)

[blockquote]The boy wonder, who taught himself calculus, algebra, geometry and trigonometry in a week[/blockquote] I call bullshit.

Re:Primary Source (4, Insightful)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642448)

[blockquote]The boy wonder, who taught himself calculus, algebra, geometry and trigonometry in a week[/blockquote]
I call bullshit.

How so? It's not unprecedented for people to be savants, and to have singularly amazing mathematical abilities. The human brain is an amazing thing ... I don't even think this is the first time I've heard about a teenager with some form of autism who is a math prodigy.

According to the article:

At this point, Jake's math IQ -- which has been measured at 170 (top of the Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children) -- could not get any higher.

"You could tell right off the bat, his performance has been outstanding," said Ross, who, at age 46 with a Ph.D. from Boston University, has never seen a kid as smart as Jake.

Sure, it's rare. But, I don't think it's unprecedented to see this.

Of course, I can only imagine that between being this smart (for math) and having some degree of autism is going to make it difficult for him -- I can only imagine how messed up it would be to be doing graduate-level mathematics, and still have all of the other crap a 12 year old has to go through on top of that.

But, I don't dis-believe that he taught himself high school math in a week or two. Some of these kinds of problems are well documented as something that occasionally someone with autism or something similar just "see" and work with naturally.

Re:Primary Source (2, Interesting)

Scrameustache (459504) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642194)

the Earth, made mostly of carbon

He's good at math, but he's applying that math on an ignorant premise.

Re:Primary Source (0)

Luyseyal (3154) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642294)

He watches documentaries on the History Channel.

The state of journalism these days. Don't they ever check facts anymore? The History Channel is the bible/alien abduction channel, not the documentary channel.

-l

/Yeah, yeah, sarcasm.

Re:Primary Source (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35642452)

He watches documentaries on the History Channel.

The state of journalism these days. Don't they ever check facts anymore? The History Channel is the bible/alien abduction channel, not the documentary channel.

-l

/Yeah, yeah, sarcasm.

Used to be the WWII Channel a decade ago. Post-2012 it'll probably devolve into the History of Pumpkin Cuckin Channel before hitting a renissance revival and becoming the Bible/Alien Abduction of Pumpkins Chucked during WWII Channel.

Stick this boy in a MRI (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 3 years ago | (#35641662)

And dissect his brain. Really, it would be interesting to see what a 12 year old math genius' functional MRI looks like. Probably lots of glucose uptake in certain regions. (Unlike mine which has glucose intake concentrated near the doughnut).

That kind of thing has been done actually (1)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 3 years ago | (#35641792)

They've looked at child prodigies, as in children who can truly excel even by adult standards, in fMRIs with various tests. I cannot find a link right now but the interesting thing they find is that in terms of logic, their brains function like adults, but in terms of emotion, their brains function like children. It is not as though they just develop at an accelerated rate, some things do, some do not.

Re:That kind of thing has been done actually (1)

HungryHobo (1314109) | more than 3 years ago | (#35641956)

perhaps the contrast has some advantage, a lot of really groundbreaking stuff seems to get done by the really young geniuses.

Re:That kind of thing has been done actually (2)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642054)

I don't know. I can't think of too many prodigies who you can name among the top scientists. There's a difference between a genius and a prodigy. For example Feynman was a genius. There is no question of that. However he was not a prodigy. While he was far ahead of most children, as geniuses are, he was not operating and excelling at an adult level as a pre-teen.

You don't see a lot of prodigies, it is pretty rare, and they only seem to happen in music and math (which may really be two sides to the same coin). However the do not seem to go on to become super-super geniuses very often.

Re:That kind of thing has been done actually (1)

Locke2005 (849178) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642122)

Feynman real talent was the ability to explain complex physics in terms even a 12 year old could understand. Looks like this kid has that same talent.

Re:That kind of thing has been done actually (1)

vlm (69642) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642306)

Feynman real talent was the ability to explain complex physics in terms even a 12 year old could understand. Looks like this kid has that same talent.

I think you're getting all confused here. "Feynman's real talent" was in physics. He got a Nobel prize in physics for his work in QED. Not for writing books. I don't think any 12 year olds understand Feynman diagrams.

The weirdest part about Feynman's legacy is he did some pretty good lectures against cargo cult science, yet he's been embraced by those same people! Kind of like the situation of Nietzsche and antisemitism.

You want a dead scientist whom was a great writer, try Asimov and check out his non-fiction.

Re:That kind of thing has been done actually (1)

Bob Cat - NYMPHS (313647) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642206)

Feynman was repairing radios and getting paid for it when he was a little boy [his words].

Re:That kind of thing has been done actually (1)

wisty (1335733) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642382)

Which is roughly equivalent to a boy getting paid to fix computers these days.

Re:That kind of thing has been done actually (1)

Garble Snarky (715674) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642456)

He was able to do that because of the (apparently timeless) irrational fear of technology - soldering a loose wire was usually all it took. Entrepreneurial prodigy maybe, but not scientific.

Re:That kind of thing has been done actually (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35641992)

They've looked at child prodigies, as in children who can truly excel even by adult standards, in fMRIs with various tests. I cannot find a link right now but the interesting thing they find is that in terms of logic, their brains function like adults, but in terms of emotion, their brains function like children. It is not as though they just develop at an accelerated rate, some things do, some do not.

Can anyone on Slashdot relate to that?

Re:Stick this boy in a MRI (1)

v1 (525388) | more than 3 years ago | (#35641800)

they already went crazy with einstein's brain and didn't learn much.

Re:Stick this boy in a MRI (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35641870)

they already went crazy with einstein's brain and didn't learn much.

Sure, but they didn't extract it until he was dead.

Re:Stick this boy in a MRI (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35641886)

I'm pretty sure Einstein was dead long before the fMRI was invented, and an fMRI of a dead brain is relatively uninformative.

Re:Stick this boy in a MRI (3, Funny)

Surt (22457) | more than 3 years ago | (#35641938)

Yeah, but he was a loser who couldn't figure out relativity until adulthood. This kid actually has some talent.

Re:Stick this boy in a MRI (2)

Swarley (1795754) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642316)

Actually they did learn something. The section of brain next to the spatial reasoning piece never formed in Einstein's brain. This allowed his spatial reasoning section to fill the empty space and be twice as large as a normal person's. This is exactly the sort of thing that makes me dubious of genetic engineering of humans. Knowing beforehand that a piece of brain was simply not going to form would be the sort of thing someone would try to "fix".

Sounds like someone i know... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35641672)

Sheldon Cooper ???

Re:Sounds like someone i know... (1)

blai (1380673) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642020)

No, Cooper was 14...

Aspergers Syndrome (3, Insightful)

WrongSizeGlass (838941) | more than 3 years ago | (#35641676)

This kid has Aspergers syndrome and is making the most of it. Good for him. Hey kid, invent me a time machine dammit so I can warn myself about all the stupid stuff I did to end up where I am in life!!

Re:Aspergers Syndrome (-1, Flamebait)

MichaelKristopeit411 (2018832) | more than 3 years ago | (#35641736)

like cowering my shadow behind a chosen mistake based pseudonym?

you're completely pathetic.

Re:Aspergers Syndrome (1)

WrongSizeGlass (838941) | more than 3 years ago | (#35641784)

Hi Michael! Nice to see you around these parts. What do you think of the 'Whiz Kid'?

Re:Aspergers Syndrome (-1, Troll)

MichaelKristopeit413 (2018846) | more than 3 years ago | (#35641928)

i think you're an idiot.

cower in my shadow some more, feeb.

you're an ignorant hypocrite.

Re:Aspergers Syndrome (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35641984)

You didn't answer his question. What do you think of the 'Whiz Kid'?
Maybe your algorithms need polishing?

Re:Aspergers Syndrome (4, Insightful)

strack (1051390) | more than 3 years ago | (#35641816)

well, the real measure of this is to see where he is when hes like 25 or roundabout. theres been a lot of boy wonders who burnt out.

Re:Aspergers Syndrome (3, Interesting)

TheLink (130905) | more than 3 years ago | (#35641982)

A number of famous mathematicians and physicists did a lot of great stuff before they were 25.

So from pure science POV it matters not that he burns out, but that his flame burns bright enough.

Before they were 25 (1)

alexander_686 (957440) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642460)

Most breakthrough work is done before a person is 25 – [Well, 30] – so I am not sure what that proves.

It’s is not so much people burning out. It is the difference between a young flexibly mind who is willing to put in ungodly hours to write an original thesis vs. a family man of the status que who needs to teach classes and shepherded Phd candidates.

Re:Aspergers Syndrome (1)

LongearedBat (1665481) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642016)

Then they better put a cooling system on his head quick smart, before smoke starts coming out of his ears.

Re:Aspergers Syndrome (1)

Ambvai (1106941) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642174)

Ignoring the effect to the individual in question, but is it really so bad that some people can achieve a "normal" person's achievements in a third the time? Even if they do nothing for the rest of their lives, they already did as much as other people.

Re:Aspergers Syndrome (1)

Luyseyal (3154) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642402)

I just hope this big bang debunking thing doesn't turn into a conspiracy theory thing that drives him into insanity (like Bobby Fischer).

-l

Re:Aspergers Syndrome (1)

bberens (965711) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642414)

If he's got any sense (as opposed to being intelligent) he'll get a job writing complex trading algorithms for some big Wall Street firm. There's no money in doing something productive, might as well be rich.

He does NOT have Aspergers Syndrome (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35642132)

This kid has Aspergers syndrome and is making the most of it.

Where does it say he has Aspergers? The headline says "Autistic" but nowhere does it say his parents took him to a psychologist or a psychiatrist for a diagnosis. And considering that the Autism diagnosis is throw around for anyone who's "off-beat" I would be incredulous about any such diagnosis.

Based upon what I see in the article, the kid is quite normal socially - maybe even above normal since he's quite able to effectively tutor people ten years his senior.

Another exaggeration of this article is claiming that his "IQ is higher than Einstein's". Einstein never took an IQ test; therefore any assumptions about his IQ is pure speculation.

Re:He does NOT have Aspergers Syndrome (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35642264)

I'm guessing the part where they say he has Aspergers "Jake was diagnosed with Aspergers syndrome, a mild form of autism, from an early age." But I agree about the Einstein thing, he is unquestionably incredibly intelligent comparing him to Einstein using a false comparison is unnecessary but it's the Daily Mail, allowances have to be made.

Re:He does NOT have Aspergers Syndrome (1)

Duncskunk (1967380) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642310)

This kid has Aspergers syndrome and is making the most of it.

Sounds to me he's more of a sevant ;)

Re:Aspergers Syndrome (1)

hitmark (640295) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642424)

Indeed. Just like a music or sports prodigy, he has found something he loves doing and have done it every chance he has gotten.

Amazing! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35641686)

It will be amazing what else he comes up with. I hope he still allows himself time to have a proper childhood and not suffer from burn out.

I hear he's also quite the ladies man (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35641708)

Einstein was.

Re:I hear he's also quite the ladies man (2)

Locke2005 (849178) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642058)

Einstein had a one-track mind. He would get fixated on one subject and obsess about it for days, to the exclusion of all else. Imagine what happened when he got fixated on pussy!

Oh sure..... (1)

BLToday (1777712) | more than 3 years ago | (#35641720)

What's the theory? How does it "expand" on relativity?

Re:Oh sure..... (5, Funny)

WrongSizeGlass (838941) | more than 3 years ago | (#35641744)

What's the theory? How does it "expand" on relativity?

I think he made relativity object oriented.

Re:Oh sure..... (2)

Yaos (804128) | more than 3 years ago | (#35641836)

Why would you expect facts from a news article? They need to crap out articles as fast as possible and damn the reporting.

Re:Oh sure..... (2)

ObsessiveMathsFreak (773371) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642082)

This has nothing to do with Relativity as far as I can see. He's giving a presentation on integration by parts(to someone else apparently) using his window instead of a whiteboard. I wouldn't have started with the integrals that he did, but otherwise I find no complaint in the presentation.

Remarkable enough for a 12 year old, though it should be noted that there are a always a few precocious mathematicians about. I can say that it's more than I was able to do at 12, or 15 for that matter.

Ordinarily, bright sparks like this one would perhaps be trained to compete in the International Mathematics Olympiad or the like, and would go on to become a research mathematician. Unfortunately those glitterati physicists appear to have poached yet another promising student. Is there no end to their palaver?!

Barnett's Theory (1)

freakingme (1244996) | more than 3 years ago | (#35641748)

I'm not aware of a Barnett's theory, so he still gets to think of his own theory - when he is old. When he's fifteen y/o perhaps?

At least he's not Chinese. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35641796)

Or Indian. Winner!

Re:At least he's not Chinese. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35642234)

or even Jewish!

to think i (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35641826)

to think i could be that kid, if i didn't waste my time on my pc

Nonsense! (4, Funny)

gestalt_n_pepper (991155) | more than 3 years ago | (#35641834)

He doesn't even have his deriver's license yet!

Re:Nonsense! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35642010)

Hey there's nothing wrong with not having a deriver's license, I don't have a deriver's license either.

Re:Nonsense! (1)

Locke2005 (849178) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642092)

Wow... he's rewriting relativity, and he can't even derive yet!

Re:Nonsense! (1)

sweatyboatman (457800) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642268)

that is so bad I was forced to comment

Re:Nonsense! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35642432)

I was going to retort, but I didn't want to waste the bandwidth.

The Big Bang (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35641854)

"But far from complaining, Jake has turned the sleepless nights to his advantage - debunking the big bang theory."

Wait...what? I think we need more of an explanation on this little gem.

Re:The Big Bang (2)

skids (119237) | more than 3 years ago | (#35641916)

IIRC when I read this a day or two ago, it was due to not enough time available for the formation of carbon by the time it was supposed to be there.

Re:The Big Bang (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35642186)

No need to panic, we've already solved this one - the lack of carbon in the early universe is explained by the presence of a theoretical substance called Dark Carbon.

Re:The Big Bang (1)

tycoex (1832784) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642406)

I like all these "theoretical" substances. Instead of just admitting when a theory doesn't make sense, we like to make something up that would allow the theory to stand.

Doesn't that just fly in the face of the entire premise of science?

Re:The Big Bang (1)

AvitarX (172628) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642422)

Doesn't big bang theory basically say "magic" for that first instant though?

I think the fact that he is sussing out a new theory is good, and quite possibly correct, but the hole, not enough time for carbon I don't quite buy, as again, "magic" (for example one, then two dimensional space).

Re:The Big Bang (2)

ThatMegathronDude (1189203) | more than 3 years ago | (#35641918)

Daily Mail. Enough said.

Re:The Big Bang (1)

Culture20 (968837) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642104)

"But far from complaining, Jake has turned the sleepless nights to his advantage - debunking the big bang theory."
Wait...what? I think we need more of an explanation on this little gem.

Explanation at http://www.indystar.com/article/20110320/LOCAL01/103200369/Genius-work-12-year-old-studying-IUPUI [indystar.com]
Jump down to "Thinking big is what he does"

Re:The Big Bang (1)

Hogwash McFly (678207) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642372)

He finds the characters contrived, the jokes laboured, and the acting sub-par at best.

He thinks he's so great (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35641950)

...but I know stuff about tanks.

Obligatory XKCD (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35641988)

Jebus (5, Funny)

SomePgmr (2021234) | more than 3 years ago | (#35641994)

I now feel like a barely functioning, non-contributing member of society. Thanks slashdot.

Re:Jebus (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35642044)

No contribution is still better than "negative contribution" (for instance Wall Street).

Haters gonna hate (1)

Locke2005 (849178) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642022)

"I gave the bitch an expanded Theory of Relativity. Bitches love expanded Theories of Relativity!"

Yep, the women are gonna be all over this kid like prepubescents on a Beiber...

High hopes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35642030)

There are actually several super high IQ guys out there claiming to be working on the deepest questions known to math and science, and have been for years. Without a lot of actual academic experience they tend to make a lot of amateurish mistakes. Barnett doesn't realize, for example, that big bang carbon levels are well understood, so he's just wasting his time there.

Re:High hopes (1)

Culture20 (968837) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642198)

Barnett doesn't realize, for example, that big bang carbon levels are well understood, so he's just wasting his time there.

That sounds a lot like "Don't pay any attention to the man behind the curtain!". If the carbon levels really are well understood, then he'll eventually learn this through induction/deduction instead of rote like most young astrophysicists. Good for him.

Works on Windows .... (3, Funny)

drpimp (900837) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642032)

But how does one calculate integration by parts on non-Windows?

Sounds like he's good at math. (4, Informative)

pclminion (145572) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642066)

So, the kid seems to be great at math. Question is, is he great at physics? Manipulating equations in startling ways is cool and all, but if the result doesn't agree with reality, or if it produces nothing testable, then you're just messing around. Period.

Einstein always struggled with the mathematics and didn't consider himself to be very good at it. Einstein's contribution was the physical insight behind relativity.

Re:Sounds like he's good at math. (1)

hitmark (640295) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642396)

theoretical physics have already reached the point of being untestable unless one can launch a spacecraft into close proximity to a black hole...

cautious optimism (1)

shipbrick (929823) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642072)

The important part will be if he formulates a new theory or extends Einstein's theory such that we could make more or more accurate predictions about the universe. His math skills are not the only prerequisite here. Einstein himself said "Imagination is more important than knowledge"

"Professor John Ross, who vows to help find some grant funding to support Jake and his work " This we have to watch out for. Science funding can be difficult to get, especially in tough economic times, and hopefully this child isn't simply exploited to bring in money (or fame) for John Ross. Hopefully Robin Williams will help this kid out if necessary. [imdb.com]

He made a mistake (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35642102)

The kid integrated -sinx incorrectly. Should be cosx, not -cosx. Check @5:45.

Jake Barnett = Sam Beckett? (1)

LordStormes (1749242) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642120)

Quick, enroll this kid in MIT, get him 7 degrees, and drop him off in the desert. I need a Quantum Leap Accelerator.

Evolution.. (4, Interesting)

daitengu (172781) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642130)

I've been saying it for years.   Autism isn't a disease, it's the next step in human evolution.

Re:Evolution.. (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35642248)

So guys with autism get more pussy?

Re:Evolution.. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35642322)

So guys with autism get more pussy?

We're still working on that part.

Re:Evolution.. (5, Insightful)

smelch (1988698) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642292)

I've been saying it for years, Autism is what uncomfortable people use to make themselves feel ok about never quite understanding humans because they were too busy thinking instead of experiencing. Also, in rare cases used to refer to a mental disorder.

Re:Evolution.. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35642334)

Or they were too busy experiencing something you don't understand.

Re:Evolution.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35642388)

what a foolish statement

Re:Evolution.. (2)

Culture20 (968837) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642298)

If we were all autists, society would fall apart. High-functioning autism is great for specialized tasks, but it's nothing like neuro-typicals, and those with autism who aren't high functioning are essentially mentally retarded. They're like rain-man without the card-counting (or worse). High functioning autists are special gene sequences that bubble up every now and then, but environmental and sociological pressures will prevent them from being the norm.

Re:Evolution.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35642454)

and those with autism who aren't high functioning are essentially mentally retarded.

Very poor conclusion. You abviously have never been around many people with Autism.

Re:Evolution.. (1)

zegota (1105649) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642404)

Or maybe, you know, different people are different, and we need a diverse mix to build an efficient, progressive society. But no, you're probably right, human society would be much more advanced if we got rid of the whole socializing thing.

even moron math knows; holycost=death (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35642140)

we're sure that basic equation could be einsteined to the point of irrelativity, &/or a history rewrite as well. fortunately, we have our rulers to tell us the stuff that matters/bottom LIEn etc...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=lSp-oIOhq00#at=55

Phebe, meet Jacob (1)

UBfusion (1303959) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642164)

Jacob must be the male equivalent of "Phoebe in Wonderland" - an excellent movie on a non-geeky deviation from "normality" which was attributed to Tourette's syndrome. The success of this film is that we don't see Phoebe doing anything much abnormal, she just seems to overreact a bit to her environment.

However, after having read Foucault's History of Madness I am not totally convinced these cases are truly "syndromes", in the sense of pathological deviations from 100% healthy humans. The fortunate thing is that Jacob's parents were not idiots and had the guts to ask university professors whether their son's gibberish made any sense. I welcome such stories getting media coverage because I don't think that the majority of parents would ever consider the case their erratically misbehaving children might be savants and not psychopaths.

Re:Phebe, meet Jacob (1)

Locke2005 (849178) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642344)

That's the problem with spectrum disorders... they are things that everybody does, but some people do more than others. It's nearly impossible to determine a point at which it becomes a "disability".

obligitory (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35642180)

I, for one, welcome our new early teen overlords...

Re:obligitory (1)

Locke2005 (849178) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642376)

Wait... when did 12 become a "teen"??? I always thought teens began with thirteen and ended with nineteen...

Rewrite e=mc^2? (1)

jiteo (964572) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642242)

Easy! c=sqrt(e/m)

Re:Rewrite e=mc^2? (1)

ashvagan (885082) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642342)

The idea is to find e, not c. c is a constant.

Re:Rewrite e=mc^2? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35642350)

c = +- sqrt(e/m)

Re:Rewrite e=mc^2? (1)

gknoy (899301) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642412)

Does that discard one of the roots?

Don't burn out, dear child. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35642244)

Let me remind us all of something.

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart had this child beat in I.Q by 20 and had a musical understanding greater than this kid's mathematical understanding.
Wolfgang, too, was pushed as a child into work, and pushed to win awards and everything. And so he did. He won many awards, people were fascinated by his music.

But as he grew older, his emotions did not. He was incapable of keeping a job, incapable of holding onto money and incapable of keeping friends. He was extremely and unbelievably good at music and not much else.

How did that end for Mozart?

To allow this child to begin working for pay in astrophysics would be the ultimate waste. Give him time, let him bloom slowly, so that he may have the time to develop the skills he needs to work in this world for a lot longer than ten years. And, finally, so that he is famous from the age of 20 and on, and so he does not die in his thirties as Mozart did.

How best to use his talents? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35642250)

I sure hope he resists the lure of productive work and ends up on Wall Street.

He's in for a shock (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35642278)

Wait'll he finds out the "E" in the equation doesn't stand for "Elmo".

Still able to be a kid (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35642288)

I'm impressed with his tallent but I hope that he still gets to be a kid. Being 12 and getting ready to work as an astrophysis means that he might miss out on a lot of stuff that kids his age would normally do. Hopefully he won't be socially awkward like Sheldon Cooper from The Big Bang Theory. Also I want to see this kid on The Big Bang Theory, that would be an awesome episode.

Big Bang Theory (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35642360)

"Jake has turned the sleepless nights to his advantage - debunking the big bang theory."

To Jake, one mind to another. (1)

DontLickJesus (1141027) | more than 3 years ago | (#35642472)

Go for it kid, and I wish you all the luck. Having a mind like this is exciting, but it burns a lot of us out. It's become even harder with the diagnosis or Aspergers and ADD/ADHD, as many of us end up on medication which robs us of the gift. I love the fact that you are getting the opportunity to share with other people at such a young age. All too often folks won't listen because they simply don't understand. This in turn causes us to retreat, which is the worst outcome possible.

My words of warning: As described in the article, the numbers come to you constantly. Your sleepless nights will likely continue the rest of your life, and later it will likely affect your relationships with the opposite sex. Just as you have learned substitution in integration theory, so should you apply descriptions you give of the world around you. Most persons don't want to hear numbers all the time, and the beauty of the world around them holds great significance. While we both see numbers as beautiful in their way, most others see them as cold. Just learn to substitute your larger mathematical concepts with equivalent adjectives. You don't have to hide the fact you are doing this, but for those you get to know well, it will help them grow closer to you.

Rise on brother.
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