AANE, Autism, inclusion, neurodiversity

Unconventional Thinking: How Neurodiversity Benefits the Tech Community

On April 5th, MassTLC Trustee Dan Bricklin, President of Software Garden and “Father of the Spreadsheet,” along with a line-up of other creative minds will look at the past, present, and future of unconventional thinking in our workplace during an evening event entitled Unconventional Thinking: How Neurodiversity Benefits the Tech Community at the Cambridge Innovation Center, organized by The Empowered Brain Institute in partnership with Asperger/Autism Network.

Writing in Wired Magazine last year, Kevin Pelphrey cited Alan Turing as the “mastermind whose role in cracking the Nazi Enigma code helped the Allies win World War II. He built a machine to do the calculations necessary to decipher enemy messages and today is hailed as the father of the com­puter and artificial intelligence. He’s also widely believed to have been autistic.”

He went on to write that “Turing was not diagnosed in his lifetime, but his mathematical genius and social inelegance fit the profile for autism spectrum disorder (ASD). And his story illustrates how society benefits when it gives a voice to those who think different. Until he came along, no one perceived the need for a com­puter; they simply needed to crack the code. It took a different kind of mind to come up with that unexpected, profoundly consequential solution.”

The Empowered Brain Institute is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization established to engage in science, education, and advocacy toward the full realization of human mental potential. We conduct studies and partner with parents, educators, and medical professionals to transform the way cognitive differences are perceived and treated by society.

Asperger/Autism Network (AANE) works with individuals, families, and professionals to help people with Asperger Syndrome or similar autism spectrum profiles build meaningful, connected lives. We do this by providing information, education, community, support, and advocacy–all in an atmosphere of validation and respect.


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