Mike Byster

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Mike Byster
Mike Byster standing in front of a whiteboard during a TEDx presentation in Naperville, IL.
Mike presenting during a TEDx conference
Born (1959-03-05) March 5, 1959 (age 59)
Skokie, Illinois
Known for Mental math abilities
Website www.mikebyster.com

Michael Byster (born March 5, 1959) is an American mathematician, mental calculator, and math educator. He worked as a commodity trader until he quit his job to devote himself to teaching children his methods. He has spoken at over 10,000 schools for free and continues to mentor kids. Mike is able to do many arithmetic problems in his head at very fast speeds.[1] During a study done years ago, Byster was claimed to have one of the fastest mathematical minds in the world.[1][2]


Early life[edit]

Byster was raised along with his older sister in the Chicago suburb of Skokie, Illinois. His parents Gloria and Dave encouraged his math shortcuts at a young age.[1] He went to Niles North High School and then attended University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign, graduating with a bachelor's degree in finance in 1981.


Byster used to work at the mercantile exchange, but after his cousin, a math teacher in a Chicago area high school, invited him to show the class his shortcuts for doing base 10 arithmetic, Byster quit his job to devote himself to teaching children his methods.[3] After that, he continued to do shows for free to schools across the United States. In December 2003, he released the website Mike's Math, but this was discontinued in 2007.[4] In 2008, Byster produced the Brainetics math and memory system. Byster claims that Brainetics uses both sides of the brain to process and store information, allowing anyone to recall the information at a fast pace.

Media appearances[edit]

Mike appeared on ABC's 20/20 in 2007. From 2007 to 2010, he appeared on television shows multiple times. On January 21, 2010, Mike appeared on Oprah Radio's Gayle King show.[5] Mike has appeared on The Shopping Channel in Canada and QVC in the United States multiple times. He appeared on Fox News June 8, 2011. He has also appeared on WGN in July 2011, Good Day New York in August 2011[6] and then Fox News Boston on October 27, 2011. He was on WBEZ's Afternoon Shift on September 27, 2013.[7] In November 2016 Mike gave a TEDx talk entitled 'How to Think Like a Genius'.[8] On June 26, 2017, Mike competed on the Fox TV competition series Superhuman. Byster won that week's competition and with that received $50,000 and the title of Superhuman.[9][10][11] He is a monthly guest on Maryland radio talk show The Rude Awakening Show.

Personal life[edit]

Byster got married in the early 1990s and has a son, Josh, to whom he has taught his methods. He currently resides in the northern suburbs of Chicago.[1] Byster is Jewish.[12][13]


  1. ^ a b c d Pisarcik, Kristin (September 7, 2007). "Mikes Math". ABC News. Retrieved March 27, 2007.
  2. ^ "One of the Fastest Brains in the World, Mike Byster Blows Anchors Away with Brainetics!". WGN-TV. 2017-08-30. Retrieved 2018-05-13.
  3. ^ "Who Is Mike Byster, The Brainetics Pioneer". Archived from the original on February 18, 2013. Retrieved March 29, 2012.
  4. ^ "Wayback Machine". Internet Archive. Retrieved March 27, 2012.
  5. ^ Gayle King, Mike Byster (January 21, 2010). Math Whiz Mike Byster. Harpo, Inc.
  6. ^ "Brainetics - New York News". Fox Television Stations, Inc. 2011-08-23. Archived from the original on 2013-10-29. Retrieved 2013-06-21.
  7. ^ Byster, Mike (27 September 2013). "Teaching math by WBEZ's Afternoon Shift". WBEZ 91.5 (Interview). Interviewed by Niala Boodhoo. Chicago. |access-date= requires |url= (help)
  8. ^ Byster, Mike, How to Think Like a Genius, TEDx, November 2016
  9. ^ http://www.chicagotribune.com/entertainment/chicagoinc/ct-superhuman-mike-byster-20170609-story.html
  10. ^ http://chicago.suntimes.com/entertainment/local-brainiac-mike-byster-competes-on-superhuman/
  11. ^ https://hiddenremote.com/2017/06/27/superhuman-predictable-spoils-ending-episode/
  12. ^ https://www.c-j-c.org/news/obit.aspx?id=72674
  13. ^ https://www.jrc-evanston.org/sites/default/files/uploaded_documents/jrc-spring-2011.pdf

External links[edit]