Maths or memory, much depends on how you learn: Indian whiz

February 11th, 2009 - 11:45 am ICT by IANS  

Meerut-based Vats, who can solve the multiplication table of a 100-digit number faster than a computer, has been studying the human brain for the past three years now.

“When I was 12 years old, I devised a technique by which I could solve the multiplication table of just about any number. That made me realise that the human brain is like a machine and we can actually make it memorise or understand anything,” he said during a visit here.

“For instance, there can be more than one way to solve a mathematical sum. Then why is it that one particular method seems easier than the other? That’s because that method makes your brain use minimum energy.

“What I am working on now is to try and design a protocol for removing excess brain processes in learning. This will minimize the usage of energy and help you understand something much faster.

“This in turn will help one remember that thing as well,” Vats, who has made his mark in the Limca Book of Records for his amazing mathematical capability, told IANS.
This, he added, would set a precedent for e-books.

One of his major feats was improvisation of mathematical genius S. Ramanujan’s formula which was certified by professors at the Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bangalore.

Vats’ latest aim is to memorise a 19-digit number in less than a second.

“I want to break Ramon Campayo’s record of memorising a 19-digit number in a second. The event will take place this May when I will try to break a few more of the world’s toughest memory records in the presence of my IISc professors and the Guinness team,” he smiled.

Giving lectures and organising workshops in the IISc, Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Google and Yahoo, studying the human brain processes, breaking records and even working for a short while at the Microsoft Research laboratory - for a 25-year-old, it’s quite a busy schedule.

“My parents are very understanding of my erratic work hours. But it’s a gift that I have and I want to utilise it to help as many people as I can,” he smiled.

(Azera Rahman can be contacted at azera.p@ians.in )

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