Autism Aspergers

Hello. I'm Max Singularity. 

Throughout my life I have maintained friendships with people diagnosed with Autism or Asbergers Syndrome. While I have not been tested, I do have some interesting traits myself (although I was tested by Dr. Audrey Abas from Citrus College on behalf of the State of California and was diagnosed with Dyscalculia).  I also am exposed to a high population of Engineers and Scientists in my day job that may also be 'on the spectrum'. 

Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is the name for a group of developmental disorders (1). ASD includes a wide range, “a spectrum,” of symptoms, skills, and levels of disability. Classic autism, or autistic disorder, is the most severe of the autism spectrum disorders. Milder variants are Asperger’s Syndrome, sometimes called high-functioning autism, and Pervasive Developmental Disorder-Not Otherwise Specified (PDD-NOS), or atypical autism. According to the Autism Spectrum Resource Center, only 20% of people on the autism spectrum have classic autism. The overwhelming majority fall somewhere on the milder range of the spectrum.

Online games have been proven to attract ASD people for many reasons. While some have seen over-addiction as a problem (2), others have recognized that using games can help the ASD people expand their horizons and focus their talents. Please review the following two videos regarding the topic.

Here is a video from Dan a Welsh (3), a vlogger from the UK who has Aspergers Syndrome. He was diagnosed with ASD when he was 26 years old and he presently uploads videos often, and helps other players with ASD understand their abilities/disabilities.

YouTube Video




Here is a video by Dr. Paul Thomas, MD (filmed by his son) about Autism & Video Games...

YouTube Video



In EVE Online...
I am an Alliance Leader with many different pilots that have Autism and Aspergers.
We have good days, bad days & days we try to forget.
I watch my pilots struggle on a daily basis.
I hate seeing them struggle so much.  
I see them interact with other players which at times is extremely awkward.
Then there are times when they are just fine, the life of the party, and I'm glad they are our friends.

We can't accommodate them all, because sometimes they are too much for us. We often state, that the "needs of the many outwigh the needs of the few" because one person dominating a group, can shut down the group, and after all... we are in-game to enjoy the game for our own reasons.

Some aspects of people with Autism and/or Aspergers Syndrome might be...
  • Want to be alone, or might want to interact but don't know how.
  • Have trouble understanding others feeling or their own.
  • Talk only about themselves and their interests.
  • Sustained repetitive play, including music on repeat.
  • Have trouble understanding other peoples feelings.
  • Have a hard time understanding body language.
  • Become fixated on one subject or object.
  • Have a hard time making friends.
  • Have strong and unusual sensory reactions.
  • Seem nervous in large groups.
  • Upset by changes.
  • Avoid eye contact and be clumsy or awkward.

Ten positive traits of people with autism  (© Avery Eisenreich)
  • They live in the moment
  • They seldom judge others
  • They are not tied to social expectations
  • They have terrific memories
  • They are less materialistic
  • They are persistent and are trusted to follow through on their promises.
  • They can recall fine details that others miss
  • They have high integrity
  • They are free of prejudice
  • They are intelligent and talented just like everyone else

So what? I don't have Autism or Aspergers... 
Well good for you. Maybe. Maybe you don't and that is ok. There is a name for you too, so you don't get away so easy.  The name is "Neruotypical" that stands for Neurologicaly Typical (or in other words... normal).  So what if normal was looked at from a different viewpoint as abnormal.  There is a woman working in disability studies and she created a series of memes that highlight your normal condition and has created a Neurotypical Awareness program (4).

 
Some of the symptoms of Nerotypical behavior are:
  • Incapable of silence
  • Uncomfortable with solitude
  • Obsessed with social status
  • Have a pathological need for light touch
  • Skilled only in superficial social niceties
  • Eye contact is prolonged and agressive
  • Responsible for most criminal acts, assault and murder
So there you have it. Both sides of the coin presented in the same type of light. Consider that when you read about the people with ASD. 


Summary:
We are players of a game. EVE Online is a game that appeals to many people including those with ASD and Nerotypicals alike.  The key is to understand each other and collaborate outside of the game with tactics and strategy so we can invade, destroy, and blow things up in-game of the enemy players. There are strengths that many diverse people bring to the strategy table and to ignore their talents is both a waste, and foolish.  Get along.  Get it together, and plan that next mission operations on your opponent.  So go forth and spread the Space Pope's love, and by love... he means LASERS!

PLEASE NOTE: This page is a work in progress and I plan to add more information, but I hope what I shared so far is useful and informative.
/s/ Max Singularity 



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