Friday, April 03, 2015

It's Easy To Believe They're Freaks

Maybe that's the "sour grapes" approach to not wanting to put time and effort into improving memory:
Neuroscientists have long tried to measure our maximum mental volume. However, what scrambles any simple reckoning of memory capacity is the astounding cognitive feats achieved by dedicated individuals, and people with atypical brains...

Could people endowed with super-memories, then, have exceptional brains?

The short answer: no. Pi record holders, like Lu, as well as most winners of memory championships swear they are just regular people who have dedicated themselves to training their brains for holding and retrieving selected pieces of information.

Nelson Dellis, a USA Memory Championship winner, says that his memory was actually awful before he became a competitive mental athlete. Practice made all the difference. "Within weeks of training, maybe even less, you're doing something that seems almost impossible to the normal person," says Dellis. "We all have this skill within us."

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