This blog is highly personal, makes no attempt at being politically correct, will occasionaly offend your sensibility, and certainly does not represent the opinions of the people I work with or for.
Fast minds

Article: In the Olympics of Algorithms, a Russian Keeps Winning Gold.

I post this article because of two reasons. First I didn't know that there was such a clearly identified talent in the field of competitive programming, but also because of the following sentence of the article: Mitrichev is known for his "short pause"—that is, he starts to answer questions nearly as soon as he sees them.

I have felt the same in front of a girl once. A Harvard student who was spending a year in Paris and that I bumped into (literally) one afternoon in the street. Few minutes later she invited me to her place, and while talking to her I noticed that I could not register any timespan her mind was taking before answering any questions.

Witnessing something like that is way more impressive than what it sounds like, and it can also feel quite unsettling. At first, in her presence I felt that there was something wrong with me, but I could not identify what. The feeling stayed for a while but then I understood what was happening. My mind has a natural tendency to sample time a lot, as part of my natural observation patterns, and I usually extract a lot of information from people because of this; It is just something I have always done. This said, my internal clock could not cope with her speed, so some parts of me must have though that I was broken and needed repair...