When Engineers’ Genes Collide - Autism may result
The theory is new, but the idea that mating patterns may have increased the incidence of autism is not. In Silicon Valley, where systemizers of both sexes abound, the notion has been the subject of nervous jokes for years.
”There’s a tremendous concentration of autism-related syndrome in the computer industry, and I get a lot of hits on my Web site from those companies,” says Temple Grandin, professor of animal science at Colorado State University, in Fort Collins, and perhaps the most famous autistic person alive. She designed a widely used humane cattle-slaughtering system; wrote an intellectual memoir, Thinking in Pictures (Doubleday, 1995); and now devotes much of her time to the causes and human effects of autism.