I think a lot of times children are misdiagnosed with Asperger’s or autism when in reality it is probably sensory processing disorder. I am not pretending to be a doctor here and make an armchair diagnosis of anyone, but I think there is a lot of commonality between the three that is missed or not evaluated in depth enough to distinguish between them. There is an article about the founder of BitTorrent who is (self-diagnosed) Asperger’s. It is an amazing article in that most people know that there is something wrong with themselves but they don’t know what it is until later in life. Most people find coping skills but not complete social conformity.
The sensory processing issues can be debilitating for some: for example, being touched can be excruciating and elicit a fight or flight reaction. For a child that has to line up for recess, lunch, or library time every single day, this can be frustrating or exhausting, not to mention, lead to fighting.
If you know someone like this, and there are a lot more in the Silicon Valley than in other places, please pass on the article about Bram Cohen at BitTorrent. The comments on the article are illuminating as to the misinformation and mis-perceptions out there.