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Blue Jay
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05 Nov 2010, 5:06 pm

I've been reading about how individuals with AS may have difficulty holding down a job due to social problems. On the other hand, I've seen several lists of 'famous people with AS' (or suspected of having AS) from many different fields (e.g. actors, mathematicians, scientists, musicians, artists, entrepreneurs, politicians, etc.)

I'm confused by this -- does anybody have insights into this disparity?



Last edited by Combo on 05 Nov 2010, 5:16 pm, edited 2 times in total.

Asp-Z
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05 Nov 2010, 5:11 pm

Many Aspies can hold a job just fine, they're just less likely to make a thread about it because they don't require help.



wavefreak58
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05 Nov 2010, 6:24 pm

Like any population, there will be a range of ability and success. Take pro sports, for example. There are elite athletes filling those ranks and even among them some that are above the rest. But there are many times more very good athletes, and a innumerable host of average ones. So to is it with autism. For every Temple Grandin there is a multitude of people on the spectrum with levels of disability ranging to barely impaired to unable to care for their most basic needs.



naturalplastic
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05 Nov 2010, 7:46 pm

Aspies are often like idiot savants- impaired, but super talented at something.

Usually it is something useless, but often an individual lucks out and has a talent at something that earns them a living and compensates for the social impairment.

Like winning the lottery.

Had Bill Gates been obsessed with collecting beany babies he wouldve ended up in an institution, but he had an obsession with soft ware and now he's among the top five tycoons on the planet.



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05 Nov 2010, 9:10 pm

Please correct/add to these lists as you see fit:

Possible famous people w/ AS/autism:
Einstein
Da Vinci
Isaac Newton
Van Gogh


Savants:
Daniel Tammet
Kim Peak

Other/Not sure where to put him:
Tito Mukhopadheay (can't spell his surname sorry)

Famous People on the Spectrum:
Temple Grandin
Jerry Newport
Mary Newport
Dawn Prince Hughes


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theWanderer
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05 Nov 2010, 9:25 pm

Peko wrote:
Please correct/add to these lists as you see fit:

Possible famous people w/ AS/autism:
Einstein
Da Vinci
Isaac Newton
Van Gogh

Nikola Tesla
Winston Churchill

Peko wrote:
Savants:
Daniel Tammet
Kim Peak

Other/Not sure where to put him:
Tito Mukhopadheay (can't spell his surname sorry)

Famous People on the Spectrum:
Temple Grandin
Jerry Newport
Mary Newport
Dawn Prince Hughes


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one-A-N
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05 Nov 2010, 9:50 pm

Many Aspies (not all!) are well adapted to research or design work in fields like mathematics, science, engineering, and computer technology. Aspies like to work on their own, can focus on solving technical problems, and love to "binge learn" (quickly absorb vast amounts of information about topics they are fascinated by). While we may not be good at team work and organisational politics, we can make significant technical contributions to our chosen fields.



billybud21
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06 Nov 2010, 12:58 am

Combo wrote:
I've been reading about how individuals with AS may have difficulty holding down a job due to social problems. On the other hand, I've seen several lists of 'famous people with AS' (or suspected of having AS) from many different fields (e.g. actors, mathematicians, scientists, musicians, artists, entrepreneurs, politicians, etc.)

I'm confused by this -- does anybody have insights into this disparity?


Remember it is a spectrum, so not everyone is affected by AS in the same way. The only problem with "famous people with AS or suspected of AS," is that we should only evaluate those who are alive today. Saying someone who has left this earth a long time has AS is suspect at best because we cherry pick the behaviors that we deem to be AS in nature that they may have exhibited.

Plus aspies can make it in the work placed, but are usually more comfortable in academia, some in politics and acting if they have a strong alternate persona, etc. I am in academia and it is estimated that a up to a third of the professors have AS. That statistic is even high in certain disciplines, i.e. math, the physical sciences, etc.


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gorillawoman
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29 Nov 2010, 9:03 pm

naturalplastic wrote:
Aspies are often like idiot savants- impaired, but super talented at something.

Usually it is something useless, but often an individual lucks out and has a talent at something that earns them a living and compensates for the social impairment.

Like winning the lottery.

Had Bill Gates been obsessed with collecting beany babies he wouldve ended up in an institution, but he had an obsession with soft ware and now he's among the top five tycoons on the planet.


I'm wondering if you yourself are on the spectrum? I know you surely mean well, but I always cringe a little inside when people call me an idiot -- even when "savant" is attached to it (and they have, to my face). LOL Interestingly, it is often people with perfectly acceptable social skills who do this...

I would be cautious about making the claim that our talents are "usually something useless." I think it is a matter of identifying a person's talent and finding a useful way to channel it -- not just people on the spectrum, but for everyone. And certainly "useful" is a term that can be broadly interpreted: I think it's useless to engage in jobs that continue to destroy the planet and its inhabitants, for example, but my point of view is sadly not the usual interpretation. :-/



Shadi2
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29 Nov 2010, 9:08 pm

gorillawoman wrote:
naturalplastic wrote:
Aspies are often like idiot savants- impaired, but super talented at something.

Usually it is something useless, but often an individual lucks out and has a talent at something that earns them a living and compensates for the social impairment.

Like winning the lottery.

Had Bill Gates been obsessed with collecting beany babies he wouldve ended up in an institution, but he had an obsession with soft ware and now he's among the top five tycoons on the planet.


I'm wondering if you yourself are on the spectrum? I know you surely mean well, but I always cringe a little inside when people call me an idiot -- even when "savant" is attached to it (and they have, to my face). LOL Interestingly, it is often people with perfectly acceptable social skills who do this...


Made me cringe too lol (all the parts in bold)


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CockneyRebel
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29 Nov 2010, 9:33 pm

It's not up to me to diagnose famous people.


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Cash__
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29 Nov 2010, 10:29 pm

I don't know any famous people personally enough to diagnose them. Plus, the persona put on in public by most celebrities is not usually their real personality. Its all a front to get media attention.



ruveyn
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29 Nov 2010, 10:37 pm

Peko wrote:
Please correct/add to these lists as you see fit:

Possible famous people w/ AS/autism:
Einstein
Da Vinci
Isaac Newton
Van Gogh




Also P.A.M. Dirac the brain father of quantum field theory.

ruveyn



mimsy123
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30 Nov 2010, 12:42 am

gorillawoman wrote:
naturalplastic wrote:
I would be cautious about making the claim that our talents are "usually something useless." I think it is a matter of identifying a person's talent and finding a useful way to channel it -- not just people on the spectrum, but for everyone.


I[m comfortable with the fact that my talents are useless :-)


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CaroleTucson
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30 Nov 2010, 8:24 am

Peko wrote:
Please correct/add to these lists as you see fit:

Possible famous people w/ AS/autism:
Einstein
Da Vinci
Isaac Newton
Van Gogh


Richard Nixon.



TheBicyclingGuitarist
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30 Nov 2010, 9:16 am

naturalplastic wrote:
Aspies are often like idiot savants- impaired, but super talented at something.

Usually it is something useless, but often an individual lucks out and has a talent at something that earns them a living and compensates for the social impairment.


Famous people with AS? The Bicycling Guitarist!
Oh wait, I'm not famous (yet), lol. [edit added: Well, I am locally famous where I live. I've never got any national or international exposure though except for my web site that gets about 200 visitors a day, mostly US but some from all over.]

As an example of the "usually something useless" from the quote above, I know insane amounts of information about the World Wars of the 20th century: the events, people, technology (especially the military technology, even more especially the ships and airplanes but not quite as much about the tanks or guns), battles, campaigns, strategies, etc.

I might win bar bets or trivia contests, maybe a game show that had these as categories, but so far all this knowledge has never been of any financial advantage to me. Perhaps I could be an instructor in a college course about it? Oops no wait, would have to get a degree then to teach. I tried more than twenty years to get a degree, and all I got on paper is a two year degree. At that rate I won't live long enough to do that.

Also, once I had the degree, my erratic sleeping patterns would interfere with being able to function on a regular schedule like "normal" folks, and even if that wasn't a problem sensory overload would make it painful to be in a room full of people. I could shut down any time from sensory or psychological overload from the stresses of the job. Not reading social cues means my students could BS me more about missing assignments or such without my realizing it, and...maybe not such a good idea after all.

The internet opens up new possibilities. Who knows what will happen? I especially hope medical science can come up with some relief for my sensory and social issues where I can function better with less pain and loneliness. For now though, I see my job as being The Bicycling Guitarist. If there is a meaning to life maybe that is the reason I'm here and why everything turned out the way it did. I haven't yet made a dime from my music yet either, but when people see me doing what I do it brings a smile to their faces.


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Last edited by TheBicyclingGuitarist on 30 Nov 2010, 9:50 am, edited 4 times in total.