Google commemorates Shakuntala Devi: The Human Computer

Google has been delivering information to the world since 1998. And from time to time Google has been reintroducing the world with pioneers, famous artists and scientists through its Doodles.

Today, Google is commemorating Shakuntala Devi also known as the “Human Computer” with a calculator styled doodle. The doodle has the initials of Shakuntala Devi and a picture of her with the word Google. You can take a look at the Doodle by visiting the Google India webpage.

Picture of Shakuntala Devi
Shakuntala Devi was best known for her mathematical abilities and hence aptly called the “Human Computer”. She was born in Bangalore on November 1929 and her talents were soon discovered by her father. He was teaching her a card trick when he first noticed her abilities to memorize large numbers; she was only three years old at that time.  After that day she demonstrated her abilities at different places. First, the University of Mysore and then she also did a tour of Europe.

Devi was also the subject of a study by Arthur Jensen, a psychology professor at the University of California, Berkeley. During his study, Arthur gave her a problem that required her to calculate the cube root of 61,629,875 and the seventh root of 170,859,375; Devi was able to answer it even before Arthur could note it down in his notebook.

Devi even competed with a computer once; the challenge was to find the cube root of 188132517 in least time and Devi calculated it before the computer. Another incidence that got her a place in the Guinness Book of Records was when she correctly gave the product of two 13-digit numbers 2,465,099,745,779 and 7,686,369,774,870.

Apart from being a mathematics wizard, Devi was also an astrologer and author of several books. Some of the titles are ‘Puzzles to Puzzles’, ‘Super Memory: It Can Be Yours’, ‘Astrology for You’ and many more.  She also published the first study of Homosexuality in India.

If you like this article then leave a comment below and share it with your friends.  Below is a small video about her life by Deccan Herald

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