Radiolab is featuring a short podcast on pianist Bob Milne. Aside from being a remarkable musician and ragtime pianist, Milne also has the uncanny ability to listen to multiple pieces of music simultaneously. Neuroscientist Kerstin Bettermann gave Milne a test where he would have to keep in his mind four orchestral pieces starting at different times. She then started the recordings of the same pieces and ten or so minutes later, she would ask him where he was in each of the pieces. He was almost exactly in sync with each one. As a control she tried this on an experienced conductor who could keep in sync for only one piece. One of the dogmas of cognitive science is that we cannot really do multi-tasking but this is clearly a counter example. It would be extremely interesting to see if he could follow simultaneous conversations or watch simultaneous movies. Is this ability exclusive to music? Does having this ability incur some cost? Is there a trade-off? I think that mapping out the full capabilities of the human mind is very useful for understanding how the brain works.