Being married to someone who spends her days with autistic kids, I find that the overwhelming majority (including me) of people are without a clue as to the workings and issues of this mental illness. I think it's really neat that this guy was able to show off his talents. I think the media people try to take advantage of autism (and other types of illnesses) for profit, as if they were circus freaks or something of that nature. I remember a story on a guy in England that had thousands of decimals of pi memorized...heck he saw pi as a picture and was able to translate that to the decimals. Crazy....
Spend some time in a classroom with autistic kids and you'll understand.
A man may smile and bid you hail
Yet wish you to the devil;
But when a good dog wags his tail,
You know he's on the level.