Shakuntala Devi Facts and Biography – The Human Computer

Shakuntala Devi’s biopic is released today globally and premiering on Amazon Prime right now. Directed by Anu Menon with lead actress Vidya Balan as Shakuntala Devi. This movie revolves around the world’s famous lady who was also known as “Human-Computer” because of her excellent and uncomparable knowledge of Maths. She lived on her own terms and rules. This movie if giving tribute to Late Shakuntala Devi but with that how she lived her life as a woman, as a mother, leader in various aspects of life.

Shakuntala Devi Movie

Source: IMDB.com

But, before you run to watch the movie on Amazon Prime, Check out Shakuntala Devi’s biography, her life facts here on Factscoops.

Early Days

Shakuntala Devi

Source: latam.aetn.com

Shakuntala Devi was born on 4 November 1929 in Bengaluru, India. She was from a conservative Kannada Brahmin family.  Her father did not want to become a temple priest by tradition. That is why he got a job in a circus. During the circus, he used to perform a variety of strange tricks. And used to play card games with her daughter in his free time. He came to know of her unusual memory while playing a card game with her three-year-old daughter (Shakuntala Devi). She would have done all this without any special training, even formal schooling. At the age of 6, she demonstrated her amazing mathematical skills at the University of Mysore. A few days later, after leaving the circus job, Shakuntala Devi’s father also organized programs to showcase the daughter’s talent. She then moved to London in 1944 with her father.

Personal & Political Life

Shakuntala Devi married Paritosh Benerjee in the year 1960 after returning to India. Her husband was working as an Indian Administrative Services (I.A.S) officer in Kolkata. However, their relation didn’t work well and they got divorced in the year 1979. In the year 1980, Shakuntala Devi dared to contest the Lok Sabha elections for the first time. Her constituency was South Mumbai and Medak (now a part of Telangana). In Medak, she was a rival to veteran Congress politician Indira Gandhi. In those days Shakuntala was the slogan of Devi. “I want to save the people of Medak from making fools by Indira Gandhi.” In that election, she finished 9th with 6514 votes.

The popularity of her Mathematical Skills

shakuntala mathematical skills

After some time, she returned to Bengaluru around 1980. Shakuntala Devi gained amazing popularity abroad after earning a name in India on the strength of Mathematical Skills. She has traveled to more than 50 countries of the world and demonstrated his mathematical talent in many educational institutions and theaters Apart from this, he also demonstrated his mathematical ability on television. In the year 1944, Shakuntala Devi went to London with her father. There he demonstrated his math skills in many institutions and schools. The British media was amazed by his mathematical ability. For this reason, he received immense popularity and special respect there. In September 1973, mathematics was asked by then-popular host Bob Wellings in a program “Nationwide” organized by the BBC’s radio channel ‘BBC’. At that time, he was completely taken aback by answering all the complex questions correctly. And thus Shakuntala Devi’s talent increased the number of her fans around the world including India doubling day and night. In 1977, at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Devi was given a 23rd route extract of the 201-digit number. Surprisingly, she gave the correct answer in just 50 seconds. The Univac 1101 computer took more than 1 minute to solve, after writing a special program.

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Guinness World Record

Guinness World Records

Shakuntala Devi presented at the Imperial College in London on 18 June 1980. There, two 13-digit numbers were randomly given by the computer department. Shortly, Devi told them by multiplication of these two numbers. She gave this answer in 28 seconds. Her amazing talent thrilled everyone present there. Writer Steven Smith said looking at such abilities – “This result is the best of everything. It can only be described with incredible words.” And thus this historical context… The Guinness Book of Records was recorded in the year 1982 with the name of Shakuntala Devi. Achieving any accomplishment is not a big deal, but some people keep it for a long time. But most of the sections keep their achievements in secret or get them patented. Shakuntala Devi was not among them.

Achievements

Shakuntala_Devi Book

She wrote a book on Mental Calculations, named “Figuring: The Joy of Numbers”. Apart from this, she also shared many ways of mental enumeration with people through various mediums. In addition to The Guinness Book of Records, Shakuntala Devi was honored with many other awards such as – Special Woman of the Year” Award and Gold Medal Presence – Donor: University of the Philippines (1969), Ramanujan Mathematical Genius Award – Venue: Washington D.C. (Year 1988) for unusual mathematical talent – Honors: Named in the Guinness Book of World Records (year 1982) “Life Time Achievement Award” Venue: Mumbai India (Year 2013) In the same year Google website honored her on her 84th birthday with Google Doodle Honor Shakuntala Devi, rich in versatility, wrote books on mathematics, astrology, puzzles, and sensitive topics related to human life which the main ones are -Astrology for you. In the Wonderland of Numbers Mathability: Awaken the Math Genius in Your Child Perfect murder Puzzles to Puzzle You Super Memory: It Can Be Yours The World of Homosexuals Shakuntala Devi’s view of life was quite different from that of the common people.

Shakuntala Devi’s Thoughts

Shakuntala Devi Thoughts

She said that “without mathematics in life you cannot do anything. If you look carefully, everything around you is mathematics, number.” Despite being so well-popular, she loved to be among the people. Regarding popularity, she said that “I don’t have a car. “I like to ride in auto-rickshaws because I like being part of the general public. I don’t believe in showing myself as great or knowledgeable to others.” and I don’t like being alone She also had a different view of education, She was told that “Studying is not just about going to school and getting a degree. It is about increasing your knowledge and the eternal truth of life is about”.  She also said that “If a person does not use his body’s muscles or any part of his body, it becomes weak or useless. It is the same with the brain. The more you keep using it It will be that much better.

Shakuntala Devi’s Final Days

Shakuntala Devi End Days

Shakuntala Devi’s health deteriorated in April 2013. Then she was admitted to a renowned hospital in Bengaluru. She was suffering from respiratory problems at that time. Every possible treatment was tried. But with the passage of time, she also had heart and kidney problems. She died in the hospital on 21 April 2013 due to a heart attack.

We will talk about her Movie biopic review probably in the next article on Factscoops.

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