Quote Originally Posted by GemPOPGem View Post
I talked to my eldest about this and he explained that he (visually) sees something similar to a network when he thinks, prehaps more like a spider graph. I wanted to ask weather you see the networks visually when you think of them? Or are you solely using the images to portray your thought process?
I'll provide a link to temple grandin's lecture on autism. More info per minute that I can write. She's autistic, visual thinker and holds a PhD. I'm also going to let up on the 'editing' process.

I posted the picture as a means to communicate the information transfer/translation challenge. Somewhat similar to pouring into a funnel too quickly and it overflows, or you have to wait until it takes its time processing the fluid. The actual mental thought is a little different, it's more nebulous.

The emphasis is in patterns. How many ways can one draw a line between 2 dots? Straight line, curved lines and anything that stays on the page. Then you can draw a thick line or a thin line, bold, whispy, whimsical etc. Then you can color it. Then you can put the whole thing into jello and draw lines that move off the page and through it. So that's two dots. And these dots aren't always words. Sometimes it's an atmosphere (avoiding a horseshoe crab shell, sand between toes, seagulls, salty sweat, dry mouth, swimming trunks sticking to legs and parts etc), movie, picture, music, a certain context etc.

Now you zoom out a little bit and you see many more dots connects in their own way. Zoom out enough, then it looks like a cloud. Then the clouds connect to each other then so on and so forth. Now that this is established, I can go through the thinking process.

At the genesis of thought, everything is basically hazy and foggy. Then certain clouds jump out. It could be said that these are perspectives or approximations or holistic groupings. Then I go into the cloud most emphasizes by my emotions (emotions like hippocampus and amygdala emotions, not feelings). After that, I can explore the interconnections in all their dimensions to the sufficient detail I need. The more experiences and knowledge I have, the more dots I have within these clouds. Sometimes, the dots have multiple connections inter-cloud and intra-cloud. Then I follow these until sufficient. The recursively, I go back and check out the other clouds that came up before hand. After all that exploration is done, the most important/relevant dots/clouds are emphasized, and the others are grayed out, they don't disappear: maybe think of layers. After that, I form a new pattern among them. Sometimes people refer to this as connecting dots that shouldn't be connected. After a pattern is formed, it now goes to the language section for communication. This is where the funneling begins and I have to chuck out parts of the pattern that doesn't fit. Either due to time constraints, or if the instructions or scope isn't clearly defined, language limitations, mood influences etc.

That's basically how I can best explain it, though I feel that it's best explained by a movie or software and it's missing some things.

When I got into doing mind maps, that really helped me a lot. It helped my create check points or save points in my thinking. Depending on concentration, I sometimes forget the really obscure patterns I create.

The real key for me is to have a very high variety of exposure. As a child, I used to take apart electronics, and put it back together again. It was such a flow or eudaimonic (eudaimonia) experience for me. Knowing how the pieces were put together and discovering as I took each piece out. Then remembering where each piece goes and reassembling them.

I was then shown to classical music. This was interesting in that all the pieces were on the page already. I just needed to put it back together. But it wasn't enough to just play the notes at the right time, there was many ways to connect the notes. There was also many ways to progress the melody. Bach was very interesting to me because it was the same notes, and yet every person played it differently. When played across different instruments and then genres, the styles were different and thus many many more patterns to discover and become intimate with. After this, I had a great professor and fell in love with physics. There were so many ways to express the same phenomena. The fundamental equations can be recombined and rewritten to describe the same phenomena. The real kicker was that I could alter the world with physics. Moving symbols and letters around while keeping the context intact was a great pleasure. For a sophomore project, the professor said we could choose a topic to research or choose any other with the professor's approval. My dumb ass decided to pick the very edge of physics at the time: string theory. I understood the concepts but lacked the mathematical skills to describe it correctly. After that, I got into computer networking which was fun, but so boring. There wasn't much room for creativity. After that was electronic circuits. The emphasis shifted from the connections to the actual nodes: discrete components and ICs/chips. The best part about this was that you could take a grab bag of elementary parts and create any circuit out there. Just needed to have enough power and parts. This helped a lot because I challenged how deep my patterns can form before I start forgetting where I started. I learned about memory chunking here, which my mind started to do anyway. I just became aware of it. I got into software, but this was problematic because I couldn't identify the problems anymore and the information I needed were sometimes proprietary. Like when writing high level code that looks almost like english, I needed to understand how my code was reduced to bits and which elementary components were being employed. Due to copyrights, I had to work in the black box model. Sometimes the black box was unreliable and returned inconsistent data. If I tell it 1+1, it'll come back 2 most of the time, but when I try something fancy, it'll come back -65535 or some wacky character. These days I find myself in neurology, psychology and (ancient) philosophy. It suits me because certain elements are fixed. The variable is in the interpretation, the story of how the dots are connected.

It seems for pattern thinkers, or at least for me, The dots, no matter how fuzzy or abstract, have to be somewhat unchanging and there has to be freedom in how to connect them. This leads to the stuff I mentioned above. Also Jazz, music, math, physics, chemistry, genetics, etc. This is also probably why I have trouble reading print. The letters are fixed, and my mind start to see patterns in the page. When I see the page turn from words into a gradient, I try to reaffirm my gaze.

I have no idea if this is helpful or pertinent. You asked, and so I write.

And about my statement about parents. My parents believed that there was only one way to a good life. That being said, none of my wishes were granted unless I had to make it agree to that good life: work hard, good grades, good job, retire and die happy and look perfect doing it, there were no alternatives. Part of the reason why I did so well in my pursuits was because it was my avenue of respite. They are probably on the spectrum, but being immigrants from a patriarchal society, their wishes were probably bulldozed as well and long forgotten.

[YOUTUBE="bgEAhMEgGOQ"]Temple Grandin Keynote[/YOUTUBE]

I forgot to mention that I am reading about positive psychology very intently. Psychology up until now has been on the disease model, trying to figure out what's wrong with people. Positive psychology finds ways to allow people to flourish, despite their problems. People like temple grandin, helen keller, itzhak perlman come to mind.