The Null Device

Scientists in the U.S. and Australia have discovered a neurological cause for savant abilities. It appears that autistic savants, endowed with supernormal mathematical, musical or artistic skills, all have damage in a location in the left arterial temporal lobe; dementia patients with damage in that particular area often also develop artistic talents, and the Australian team managed to induce improvements in intuitive artistic and mathematical abilities by magnetically turning off volunteers' temporal lobes. It is speculated that the part of the brain in question somehow blocks conscious access to low-level computations within the brain.

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