You can answer many seemingly difficult questions quickly.... The trick is that your brain can quickly decide if question is answerable by one of a small number of powerful general purpose "machines" (e.g. continuity arguments, combinatorial arguments, correspondence between geometric and algebraic objects, linear algebra, compactness arguments that reduce the infinite to the finite, dynamical systems, etc.). The number of fundamental ideas and techniques that people use to solve problems is pretty small
I think this underestimates the value of a character trait I associate with spelling well: paying attention. I don't claim any special facility in spelling, but I don't often send out spelling disasters, because I heed that little voice that says "this doesn't look quite right, and you don't use that word very often. Better check it."
xtian, according to this article the prime age is 48 nowadays.
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