Shakuntala Devi, a math guru known as the ‘human computer’, has died in Bangalore, India at the age of 83.
Devi mastered swift calculations in a unique way. Even machines struggled to match her speed and accuracy.
She first astonished the world’s top mathematicians in 1977 at the Southern Methodist University in Dallas, when she managed to extract the 23rd root of a 201-digit number in 50 seconds. The same math problem took a Univac computer 62 seconds to solve.
Three years later, before a surprised audience at the Imperial College in London, she correctly multiplied two 13-digit numbers in just 28 seconds. Her feat earned her a place in the 1982 edition of the Guinness Book of World Records.
Devi was born in Bangalore on November 4, 1929. She discovered her unique talent at the age of three while playing cards with her father. After only two years, she had become an expert on extremely difficult mathematical problems.
In the1950s she toured Europe. During an appearance at the University of Rome, the judges declared one of her answers was wrong. The experts then re-examine their own calculations before finally discovering she was right.
Arthur R. Jensen, a researcher into human intelligence, wrote about Shakuntala Devi: “The manipulation of numbers is apparently like a native language for her, whereas for most of us arithmetic calculation is at best like the foreign language we learned in school.”
- 1euronews live TV - News | euronews : the latest international news as video on demand
- 2Russia unveils ‘straight’ flag, internet responds
- 3Seven reasons why Yanis Varoufakis is now a political legend
- 4Greek crisis: ‘Agreement reached’ after marathon talks
- 5International news | euronews, latest international news
- 6Nasa announces the discovery of an earth-like planet
- 7French actor Gérard Depardieu ‘a threat to Ukraine national security’
- 8Is Saudi Arabia outlawing rainbows for being gay?
- 9Pluto: New Horizons space probe provides closest-ever pictures
- 10Latest News Bulletin
- 11International breaking news | euronews online world breaking news in video
- 12BREAKING: Formal nuclear deal reached with Iran, says diplomat
- 13Greece votes ‘No’ in overwhelming rejection of bailout proposals
- 14‘Imposed’ bailout deal must be implemented, says Greek PM
- 15At least 10 dead in explosion in Turkish town close to border with Syria
- 16Greece clinches deal with eurogroup after marathon talks
- 17Berlusconi linked with a shock return to government – in Russia!
- 18Israel angry as Iran and West talk up nuclear deal
- 19Varoufakis resigns after Greek referendum
- 20European Union News | euronews: latest breaking news and headlines about European Union
Latest world news
US-Egypt relations return to ‘stronger base’ says John Kerry
Canada PM Stephen Harper announces October 19 election
Firefighter dies as forest blazes rage across California
British singer and TV star Cilla Black dies in Spain
China looks skywards with construction of huge telescope
Wires > News
- 04:05 CET Mexico City prosecutor confirms killing of news photographer
- 03:17 CET U.N. states agree post-2015 sustainable development agenda
- 00:46 CET Nigeria’s army says rescued 178 captives of Boko Haram
- 22:44 CET Rouhani says nuclear deal a ‘third way’ for Iranian foreign policy
- 21:48 CET Saudi Arabian king leaves France after holiday controversy
- 21:21 CET Egypt president signs elections law – official gazette
- 19:49 CET Israel approves jailing Jewish militants without trial to resolve…
- 19:33 CET Plane skids off Indonesian runway, three injured and airport closed