12-year-old Jacob Barnett is a YouTube hit, thanks to a new video demonstrating an impressive new calculation.
Jacob Barnett of Hamilton County, Ind., was slow to speak: He didn’t say his first words until after the age of two. But much like Albert Einstein, who didn’t speak until after his fourth birthday, Barnett soon went from silence to prodigiousness. By three, he could solve 5,000-piece puzzles, and he graduated high school at the age of eight.
Barnett has Asperger’s syndrome, as many psychiatrists now believe that Einstein did as well. And now, the 12-year-old boy who has so much in common with the famous German genius may be about to surpass Einstein’s legacy.
Using his window as a chalkboard, Barnett recently created a video explaining his expanded hypothesis, based on Einstein’s theory of relativity. He believes he is just a few calculations away from disproving Einstein’s formula altogether, and coming up with a new one to replace it.
This isn’t kid stuff: Professors at the world-renowned Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, New Jersey have followed Barnett’s calculations with interest, and believe that he’s on to something genuine. “The theory that he’s working on involves several of the toughest problems in astrophysics and theoretical physics,” Professor Scott Tremaine wrote to Barnett’s family. “Anyone who solves these will be in line for a Nobel Prize.”
He may not get there before his thirteenth birthday—but Einstein was 26 when he developed his theory. Barnett has plenty of time to beat him yet.
Check out Barnett’s YouTube video below.