The Trachtenberg Speed System of Basic Mathematics

Recommended by Tyler Cowen, and 1 others. See all reviews

Ranked #37 in Arithmetic, Ranked #98 in Number Theory

The Trachtenberg Speed System of Basic Mathematics is a revolutionary system for calculating and teaching basic math. Children, who had repeatedly failed in arithmetic until their parents sent them to learn this method, were able to perform amazing calculations within seconds. In one demonstration, a ten year old kid when asked to multiply 5132437201 times 452736502785 simply wrote on the blackboard the answer, 2323641669144374104785 in seventy seconds. He never set up the basic and familiar line by line chart, multiplying and adding each row of numbers. Instead, he just wrote down the answer... more

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Tyler Cowen Founder/Marginal Revolution UniversityFrom this I learned how powerful the individual human mind could be, and also how much school wasn’t teaching me. It began to occur to me that the mainstream doesn’t necessarily have the best or only methods. That said, non-mainstream approaches still have the responsibility of coming up with the right answer. Query: does it these days ever make sense to actually use this stuff? (Source)

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