"This is a rebroadcast of the first podcast in the MayhemRadio series Recreating Reality, from our very own contributor Rose. First uploaded a year ago, this provides an excellent ground work for many of the concepts and ideas which Rose has touched on over her last two segments.
In this podcast she examines the phenomena known as synaesthesia and what it means to the philosophic idea that reality is in the eye of the beholder."
Does anyone here have synesthesia? I wonder if it would have any possible effect on language learning. Probably not, but maybe if you hear blue when you hear a certain word or something, you would be able to remember it more easily.
I dedicated myself to learning Chinese. I did nothing but, just about, for months on end. I had 3 hours a day of classes, and spend most of the rest of the day listening, reading, and practicing and studying. It was a lot of work for a long time. Nine months to my British Foreign Service Exam.
One week is barely enough to discover the strangeness of the new language, and perhaps to say a few things. At least for most ordinary people, like me, I think.
But Tammet does offer videos of himself being interviewed. I do not speak Icelandic but the Icelandic speakers seemed genuinely impressed. I have not seen him in French.
I do not have synaesthetic abilities and personally do not really believe in such things as far as most people are concerned. I do not exclude the possibility that this works for some exceptional people.
This ability might allow him to possess extraordinary memory. But isn’t learning a language much more than just memorizing stuff?
BTW, I can recite PI to 100 decimals at one point in my life. I can still recite 50 decimals now (sometimes better when drunk). But no one I know (including my wife) has been impressed by this. They all think that I am weird.
“He was kind of at the intermediate level.” - He seemed pretty comfortable in the interview there. I consider myself to be intermediate in French, and I wouldn’t be as comfortable as he was (and I didn’t understand quite as much as he appeared to either, there were a few key words there that I missed).
search Steve’s blog and his Youtube channel. He has had a post and a video on Daniel Tammet’s most recent book which I read after watching the video. I didn’t find the book too relevant to language learning though.
Daniel Tammet is astounding, but as has already been mentioned, he’s got an unusual brain. We can marvel at the things the human brain is capable of, but he’s autistic and has problems that arise from that. He may be able to learn languages faster than we can, but there’s a terrible price he has to pay.
@Edwin, you always seem to be commenting on how well people don’t speak. It’s widely known that he can speak pretty well, and has a natural gift. The point isn’t really whether he is intermediate or advanced.
Even like Benny, whom I question about his claims and methodology, I cannot recall making any negative comments on his speaking abilities.
When people post themselves up speaking foreign languages for the sake of showing their language abilities or promoting their products, methodologies, or claims, they are implicitly inviting people to comment on their language abilities.
Centigua’s video was dated 2009. So apparently he has made quite an advance in 2 years. It was quite impressive to present the result of his calculation in a foreign language. I myself can recite Pi to 50 decimals in 10 seconds in my native language. But even for English, I have to mentally translate each decimal individually.