Archive for the 'Asperger People In The News' Category

Like many bright Asperger people, Bram Cohen ventured out into the workplace thinking he would find challenging and rewarding opportunities that matched his intellectual abilities and gave him the opportunity to interact with those smart and rational like him. Delusion #1.

He arrived to find people did things inefficiently, wrong, and just plain got on his nerves. As an adult, he took jobs in the computer programming field, but got annoyed when people wouldn’t listen to him and do things the right way. So he decided to start his own company, BitTorrent, a brainchild born from nine months of him developing a software program in his late twenties.

Thanks to Cohen’s BitTorrent, people can exchange large amounts of information over the internet, such as video and software downloads. They’ve also pirated lots of movies and other stuff they really should be paying for, but Cohen never intended his software to be for this use.

“I couldn’t anticipate the piracy. But I was very careful from the beginning to distance myself from it,” he said in an interview with Business Week.

A woman he dated, who eventually became his wife, had worked with autistic children and suggested that he might have Asperger’s. He did some considerable research on it, made a goal to improve his social skills, and learned to do all sorts of things neurotypicals do, such as reading expressions, making appropriate eye contact, and even…flirting. It’s probably safe to say that the girlfriend-later-to-be-wife was much happier when Cohen’s Asperger’s hindered him when it came to displaying the last social ritual with other women.

Once he learned to demonstrate certain behaviors and saw himself as the Asperger pretending to act neurotypical, he said he “realized how out of it I had been my entire life.” He makes sure he tells people up front he’s different and why, before they start to make up their own, and possibly wrong, conclusions.

Go here if you’re interested in watching a video interview with Bram Cohen.

Relevant Things Mentioned In Post:
Special Interests

Photo: Bram Cohen by Jacob Appelbaum

Image: Quick Silver on Surfer Village

Ladies, ladies, ladies: This special Asperger People In The News Is For You.

Clay Marzo is a good looking man in Hawaii who loves to surf and will be flashing his Malibu looks in the movie, “Just Add Water.” Funds from the DVD sales will go to Surfers Healing an organization dedicated to fighting autism. Marzo is 19 years young and only recently diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome.

Like many Aspies, he’s always been drawn to his special interest and has become quite skilled at it. He has been recognized with 3 NSSA National Surfing Titles, a nomination for Maneuver (Surfing, that is) of the Year at the 2007 Surfer Magazine Poll and Video Awards, as well as video appearances in various surf movies.

Surfing does wonderful things for him, just as looking at him might do wonderful things for you.

“Just the feeling to get off the social side of everyone, just go surf and free your mind,” Marzo said.

He reports having sensory sensitivities and although sometimes social situations give him a wipeout, he’s quick to get back on board.

Relevant Things Mentioned In This Post:
Going MIA
The Special Interest
Possible Need For Earplugs

If you’re interested in reading the full stories, just go to KHNL as well as Surfer’s Village.

Images: KHNL

Scroll down and read text below video, then watch video to hear Stuff Asperger People Like Being Named Dropped!

Stuff Asperger People Like has been name dropped by the authors@google program. The author of Stuff White People Like, Christian Lander, spoke at Google’s Mountain View, California headquarters. While he was being introduced, a nice young lady spoke about how viral the Stuff People Like Movement has become, with all the spinoffs it has generated. Stuff Asperger People Like was mentioned as one of her favorites! Throw your parties and watch this video to hear Stuff Asperger People Like mentioned! But of course, don’t watch it with other people. Go MIA to a private room and be alone. While you’re at it, eat the same sesame noodle dish you’ve always eaten at 7:30 PM for the past decade. Don’t forget your nerd porn.


Joe Ellis, chairman of NAKMAS (the National Association of Karate and Martial Art Schools) recently made the announcement in a press release that he has Asperger’s Syndrome.

Ellis has chaired NAKMAS since its establishment in 1992 and he is also the former President and Chair of Karate England.

NAKMAS is starting its Asperger Syndrome training programme, aimed at educating martial arts coaches about the condition. The program is set to begin in 2009.

Sandra Beale, the Equality Lead Officer/Director of Operations at NAKMAS is responsible for the program and she said:

“Individuals with Asperger Syndrome are well suited to martial arts as classes tend to follow a specific order, can be repetitive, and include detailed instructions with reasons. Students also work as individuals more, depending upon the discipline chosen. All these things are attractive to a person with Asperger Syndrome, and they can also gain confidence and more experience in social situations.”

Students working as individuals more, huh? Ah, yes, going MIA is good for sports events as well.

Ellis said, “I want to show that there is no need for anyone with Asperger Syndrome to miss out on the success and enjoyment that the martial arts – or any other area of life – can bring.”

The program might also show that there is no need for anyone with Asperger Syndrome to not attain a black belt in marital arts and thoroughly kick the ass of anyone who puts their safety in jeopardy-especially if they are targeted for their Aspergerness.

The last statement in no way represents the comments, thoughts, or wishes of Mr. Ellis and NAKMAS of course. It’s just extra theorizing.

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