A couple years back I read an article about a mathematician who saw numbers as different colored shapes. He’d see a nine as a red fuzzy sphere or a zero as a keen-edged pyramid. These images allowed him to build upon his ideas and accurately compute in his head. Along with blowing my mind, this example helped me to strengthen my own thought processes through what I would call visual thinking.
Visual Thinking is a hard fit for what I’m trying to describe. Visual Thinking is a concept already linked to disorders like Autism and Dyslexia, based on “picture thinking” and spatial skills exhibited by those who are Autistic or Dyslexic. What I have experienced, or in the case of the mathematician read of others experiencing, seems so natural that its hard for me to link it to any kind of mental disorder.
Visual thinking also has close ties to Eidetic Memory. In no way am I advocating I have a superior “elephant” like memory. My memory is a unique animal in its own right. I can often remember ridiculous stats and facts that make me a master at Trivial Pursuit, but I routinely did (and would still) get my recognitive ass handed to me in a game of Memory by anyone ages 4 and up.
Memory is not centric to my interpretation of whats going on in my noggin. However I’d never rule out improved memory as a result of fanciful internal conceptualization. Can I trademark that phrase? (I should trademark that phrase)
Flow charts. Expansive, colorful, animated, funky flow charts are what I see in my head. I cannot conjure up a better way to describe the imagery in my mind during brainstorming sessions. If there is a hole or flaw in my thinking, which there often is (and I have no shortage of people to tell me so, M.P.) I see what resembles a white or grey cloud. When working on a project where I have my ideas developed and methods laid out, I’ll think in same composition of the application or software I’m using. Which I’m sure Microsoft, Google, Apple, and Adobe are all working on copywriting. These are just two ways in which I think visually, I’m quite sure there are many more.
There is no doubt in my mind that everyone has the ability to, or already does think in a manner that incorporates imagery into thought processes. I’ve just never heard anyone talk about it, except that one time with super smart math guy…or maybe he was a physicist.
– Have you ever had an idea come to mind so suddenly that blurred your thought completely?