Posted in Blog Archive

Posted by abeodbart March 28, 2011 at 1:46 pm

DAILY MAIL: “A 12-year-old child prodigy has astounded university professors after grappling with some of the most advanced concepts in mathematics.

Jacob Barnett has an IQ of 170 – higher than Albert Einstein – and is now so far advanced in his Indiana university studies that professors are lining him up for a PHD research role. The boy wonder, who taught himself calculus, algebra, geometry and trigonometry in a week, is now tutoring fellow college classmates after hours.


And now Jake has embarked on his most ambitious project yet – his own ‘expanded version of Einstein’s theory of relativity’. His mother, not sure if her child was talking nonsense or genius, sent a video of his theory to the renowned Institute for Advanced Study near Princeton University. According to the Indiana Star, Institute astrophysics professor Scott Tremaine -himself a world renowned expert – confirmed the authenticity of Jake’s theory.

In an email to the family, Tremaine wrote: ‘I’m impressed by his interest in physics and the amount that he has learned so far. ‘The theory that he’s working on involves several of the toughest problems in astrophysics and theoretical physics. ‘Anyone who solves these will be in line for a Nobel Prize.’”

Read more at The Daily Mail (Thanks Rob)

March 28, 2011 at 1:57 pm
David Cox says:


Like… wow. That is so awesome!

March 28, 2011 at 1:58 pm
Nah'shee says:

he’s so amazing!! wonderful.. he’s an autistic boy and aged 12 right? you’re younger than me and maybe a thrice smarter than me.. haha>> i think he will serve as the inspiration to every single entity living all over the world.. keep up the good work Jacob Barnett! :D

March 28, 2011 at 2:09 pm
Charlie says:

Though please do try not to link to the daily mail. I have to go and wash my eyeballs now.

March 28, 2011 at 2:14 pm
Billybob says:

If he can figure out how to rid the world of hydrocarbon dependence and at the same time find a viable alternative to fractional reserve banking then he will be important. Otherwise he is just some kid writing equations with zero value or application in the real world, rid the world of bankers; critical importance. expand on an obsolete theory by someone who did not take into account the electro-magnetic foundations of the universe; zero importance.

March 28, 2011 at 2:32 pm
Slugsie says:

Way to go kid. :)

Obsolete theory? Seriously? It’s a highly relevant theory whose effects are prevalent throughout physics. One simple example – GPS wouldn’t work if relativity wasn’t taken into account.

March 28, 2011 at 2:42 pm
Dave says:

Er, Billybob, talking of fossil fuel dependence and what we can do about it: you do know that nuclear power plants derive from relativity theory, right? Not that original scientific research needs to justify itself any more than art does. As much as it upholds civilization, it also is civilization.

March 28, 2011 at 2:42 pm
echidna says:

I think it’s interesting to read the original story at

It gives a better idea of the truth I think. He’s smart, and he’s impressing people, but his theories are probably not correct, but maybe if he gets the right support in research he’ll do well. Right now, he seems to think BBN ( ) is wrong, and… well… it looks pretty right to most physicists.

Also, Tremaine is being encouraging (and good on him for that!), but not rubber-stamping his work, from how I read it.

March 28, 2011 at 2:57 pm
Shai says:

Very impressive if this is for real! Billybob – in what way is the general theory of relativity obsolete? Do you ever use GPS? If so you’ve made use of it (without corrections for special and general relativistic effects GPS accuracy would drift by ~10km a day). You’re right that the global economic system is a mess but to claim that nothing else matters is, well a bit silly. Pushing forward the boundary of human understanding has and will continue to improve the lives of billions of people

March 28, 2011 at 3:15 pm
Danielle says:

Billybob, your misuse of semicolons is painful to behold; dropping them through a paragraph when you can’t use capitalisation or full stops correctly will not make you look more literate.

For all we know, this boy’s work could lead to a new energy source, or viable long-distance space travel, or any number of things which will be hugely beneficial to the human race. Heaps of the things we use on a daily basis weren’t originally researched or designed for the purpose they serve now. You needn’t be so disparaging of theoretical work which isn’t directly focused on solving an immediate problem.

March 28, 2011 at 3:22 pm
Marietjie Morgan says:

It was encouraging reading about this genius and I do believe that he could have an IQ of 170 because I believe my grandson who has ‘asperges’ must have an IQ of around 180. He is a total unsocial little boy of 7 but as clever as anything. I love him so much because I think I might have a little of this funny syndrome myself. I had the highest IQ in my final year of school in 1970, but my school marks were not all that great. My dad made sure that I partook in sport at school as he believed in a healthy body homes a healthy mind. Few people understand my way of thinking but I am not fazed. My grandson is 10x worse than me and he doesn’t care either. His intellect amazes me. His parents do not want to expose him. He is home schooled and standards above his peers. Greetings from SA.

March 28, 2011 at 3:22 pm

As someone who is an Aunt and a godmother to an autistic 3 year old this story fills me with nothing but sheer admiration. What an incredible young man.

LC x

March 28, 2011 at 3:23 pm
plm says:

“Right now, he seems to think BBN [...] is wrong, and… well… it looks pretty right to most physicists.”

Creationism looked pretty right to most scholars at one time too. I’m not saying he’s right, but your argument is flawed. :)

March 28, 2011 at 3:47 pm
Carol Bradshaw says:

This young man might change our future for good, and hopefully, for the better! :)))

March 28, 2011 at 3:59 pm
Mark says:

One day I had to take Maths class, it was optional but the teacher kept egging me to do it. Was nowhere near as smart as this guy though.

March 28, 2011 at 4:03 pm
Steve says:

I was more concerned about whether to choose Charmeleon, Bulbasaur or Squirtle at that age.

March 28, 2011 at 6:26 pm
ArsheyHaq says:

“But far from complaining, Jake has turned the sleepless nights to his advantage – debunking the big bang theory.”

Ah, sweet success :)

March 28, 2011 at 7:58 pm
SurrealistWhim says:

So yet another case of great minds being reincarnated to persue their unfinished work. Seeing as we are unable to complete our work in one human lifetime it makes perfect sense that we come back again and again. He just has a new body and new mind, but is an old soul reborn :o)

March 28, 2011 at 8:23 pm
Hannah says:

Anybody who slates this kid is jealous. Hes a genius! standard!

March 28, 2011 at 8:59 pm
Dave says:

And his mum isn’t telling him off for writing on the window. Lucky as well as bright.

March 28, 2011 at 10:27 pm
kavn says:

SurrealistWhim. WTF are you on about?

March 29, 2011 at 6:34 am

WOOW he is absolutely intelligence … I could not heard this posting … I will tell all my friends about this website and I bookmarked to come again .. See you Next time :)

March 29, 2011 at 2:57 pm
Boris says:

If all things could be solved just by mathematical calculations machines would rule the world. This is nonsense.

March 29, 2011 at 8:51 pm

“has an IQ of 170 – higher than Albert Einstein”

This sounds like gargabe to me. Firstly I doubt Albert Einstein ever did an IQ test. Secondly the whole concept of IQ is very dodgy. But one expects no better from the Daily Mail.

March 29, 2011 at 8:53 pm

BTW, I am not putting the kid down, just the reporting. Good luck to him.

March 30, 2011 at 5:44 pm
Aaron (The U.S. Version) says:

Interesting piece, a fascinating look at someone with an incredible gift. As far as the comparison to Einstein’s IQ: as a record, Einstein never took the test, so much of what is written about his supposedly infinite IQ status is hyperbole. Justifications can be made based on what he contributed to science to be sure, but a number doesn’t tell us the sheer number of hours of work that went into his theories. I think sometimes the public forgets that it isn’t a high IQ that’s most important, it’s the number of hours of work and constantly pushing the envelope that makes the real difference. Certainly, some people are more psychologically robust than others, but this may be more to do with biological gifted-ness than intellectualism.

March 31, 2011 at 2:39 pm
alan says:

“‘Anyone who solves these will be in line for a Nobel Prize.’”
and his very own whiteboard? So he’s not reduced to writing on windows.

April 2, 2011 at 12:07 pm
Natalie Handley says:

Wow. I thought I was smart. I’m a straight A seventh grade student taking nineth grade algebra, 3 languages, eighth grade literature, and eighth grade writing, but this kid must seriously be a genuis!!!! Way to go, Jake!!!!!

April 4, 2011 at 10:19 am
Twilord says:

Steve, I must ask, how on Earth could you pick Charmeleon as a starter Pokemon? You must be magically. Hahahah. Sorry, bet you didn’t even notice that. Your mind was likely racing about someone that young being so obscenely smart.

(For anyone wondering Charmeleon is, basically, an advanced form of Charmaner, who forms a trio with Bulbasaur and Squirtle, the three of whom you have to choose between as your first Pokemon in both Pokemon Red and Blue, or Green and Blue in Japan for that matter.)

April 6, 2011 at 9:16 pm
Shawna says:

This kid is studying at my school. He’s less than half my age.
I’m depressed now….

I’m very proud that he’s a Jaguar though!

June 25, 2011 at 9:46 am
cool says:

my IQ is 186 and i have AS

September 4, 2011 at 1:56 pm
Bourbaki says:

Don’t get me wrong since this boy is has obviously a very high IQ, but to say that is the new Einstein and works in elaborate theories is ridiculous… I have a phd in pure mathematics as well as a master in theoretical physics, I can tell you that what he is doing does not even reach university level, he uses high school mathematics to formulate well known and elementary cosmological theories: there is nothing new there, the only thing notable is that he is so young.

I have known and work with genius in my academical life, this is not measured by an IQ or sheer number crunching capacity, this measured by talent and some luck…


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