Amazing Memory Man Brain Being Tested By Scientists

University of California at Irvine doctors are studying Brad Williams' memory.

ByABC News via logo
January 15, 2008, 7:21 AM

Jan. 15, 2008 — -- Imagine being able to recall just about anything, your mind functioning as a nearly endless encyclopedic scrapbook of names, pictures, dates and events.

Wisconsin resident Brad Williams' total recall makes him a personified version of Google. His extensive memory allows him to recall almost any news event and anything he has experienced, including specific dates and even the weather.

"I was sort of a human Google for my family. I've always been able to recall things," the 51-year-old said on "Good Morning America" in his first television interview.

Williams' type of detailed, exhaustive memory is called hyperthymesia and few known cases exist. Brad's brain scans are now being studied by neuroscientists at the Center for the Neurobiology of Learning and Memory at the Univeristy of California, Irvine.

Initially, the drive-time radio broadcaster didn't think his ability to recall so much was anything special. Gradually over the years other people noticed how much he was able to remember in detail about the same events, Williams said.

Then in 2006, he read an article about a woman whom scientists called AJ, which prompted Williams to come forward. AJ is an anonymous subject of a medical journal and the only scientifically documented case of superior memory.

"When I read about AJ my immediate thought was, 'Oh my God. That's Brad," said Williams' brother Eric Williams.

Eric Williams' is intrigued about the inner workings of his brother's mind. Eric Williams is in the process of making a documentary about Brad, appropriately titled "Unforgettable."

In the film, which hasn't been completed yet, Williams takes on a person who is Googling answers to 20 questions.

He answered 18 of them correctly and was 11 minutes faster than the searcher.

"All of us have the ability to store all this information and the difference with Brad is he can retrieve it," Eric Williams said.

Williams remembered a grade he got in grade school, when anchor Chris Cuomo quizzed him about it today on "GMA."