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Old 03-20-2005, 09:03 PM   #1
TadW
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Can you memorize 1,000 digits in under an hour?

Can you memorize 1,000 digits in under an hour? Scott Hagwood can. And many of his European colleagues can as well. Take 15 minutes to memorize 99 names and faces, and 20 minutes to recall them. Next, memorize an unpublished 50-line poem in 15 minutes, followed by a series of random digits, a list of random words, and finally a shuffled deck of playing cards.

The talk is about the best memorizers in the world who are competing against each other. Slate writes about these genius minds that can memorize a pack of cards in less than a minute:

Though every competitor has his own unique method of memorization for each event, all mnemonic techniques are essentially based on the concept of elaborative encoding, which holds that the more meaningful something is, the easier it is to remember. The brain isn't built to remember abstract symbols like numbers and playing cards, but if one can translate those symbols into vivid visual images, even the dullest series of binary digits can be made as memorable as your own address. The key is to develop a system that allows quick encoding and easy recall.

Very interesting article. Too bad I already forgot most of it at the time I was writing this
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