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  1. Last 7 days
    1. I have begun this letter five times and torn it up five times.

      Begins with parallel structure a rhetorical device used throughout. With students I'd ask them to identify other examples in letter. Discuss parallelism in sermon construction and its emotionally evocative power and its use by Baldwin, King, and Obama. Connect to musicality and memory--important cultural literary structures when literature is spoken rather than read. Can connect to Akhmatova social/political context. Note the intimacy of POV. There's a duality in the expository form--it's addressed to one but published to many. Why is this an effective voice for the persona? How would you describe the persona?

  2. Jun 2020
    1. Based on all available forms, the hypothetical proto-Celtic word may be reconstructed as *dru-wid-s (pl. *druwides) meaning "oak-knower".

      With the early history of druids going into the 4th century BCE (and keeping in mind that Stonehenge's dates go to about 1600 BCE), is it possible that the druids used trees as the basis for their mnemonics in lieu of standing stones? Thus the name oak-knower is more specific to what they were doing than we give them credit for? To an outsider unaware of their ways, their ritual memory systems would have made it seem like they worshiped the trees in ways other cultures would not have?

    1. What if the best tools for thought have already been discovered? In other words, perhaps the 1960s and 1970s were an unrepeatable golden age, and all we can expect in the future is gradual incremental improvement, and perhaps the occasional major breakthrough, at a decreasing frequency?

      Many have been, but they've been forgotten and need to be rediscovered and repopularized as well as refined.

      Once this has happened, perhaps others may follow. Ideas like PAO are incredibly valuable ones that hadn't previously existed, but were specially built for remembering specific types of information. How can we combinatorially use some of these other methods to create new and interesting ones for other types of tools?

    2. Our experience is that many of today’s technology leaders genuinely venerate Engelbart, Kay, and their colleagues. Many even feel that computers have huge potential as tools for improving human thinking. But they don’t see how to build good businesses around developing new tools for thought. And without such business opportunities, work languishes.

      Some of these ideas in this section tangentially touch on the broader problems of EdTech. Technology isn't necessarily the answer.

      They're onto something, but I feel like they're missing a huge grounding in areas of pedagogy, teaching, EdTech history, and even memory and memory research.

    3. Historically, a lot of work on tools for thought has either ignored emotion, or treated it as no more than a secondary concern.

      These guys are going to have their skirts blown up when they come across the work of Lynne Kelly.

    4. Is it possible to create a medium which blends the best qualities of both video and text?



    5. The text is beautiful, but reading it is a much more remote and cerebral experience, conveying a much less visceral emotional understanding.

      And here again they reveal their lack of memory research. Indigenous peoples have used song, dance, and visuals to more dramatically appeal to the senses for improving memory.

      I'm also struck here that they haven't touched on the idea of memory related to smells.

    6. Indeed, it seems fair to say that any person who could invent Hindu-Arabic numerals, starting from the Roman numerals, would be both one of the great mathematical geniuses who ever lived, and one of the great design geniuses who ever lived. They’d have to be extraordinarily capable in both domains, capable of an insight-through-making loop which used the evolving system of numerals to improve not just their own mathematical ideas, but to have original, world-class insights into mathematics; and also to use those mathematical insights to improve their evolving system of numerals.

      I feel somewhat the same way about them and their memory abilities and insights. They don't seem to have done enough deep research into memory systems to be making the suppositions and blanket statements they're making. There's more genius hiding in there than they seem to be aware of. Sure, some of their caution and caveats are appropriate, but I feel like they're missing more than they're getting.

    7. I want creativity!

      For this one need look no further than Ramond Lull...

    8. A second caution relates to elaborative encoding. The mnemonic techniques are, as you have likely realized, an example of elaborative encoding in action, connecting the things we want to memorize (say, our shopping list) to something which already has meaning for us (say, our memory palace). By contrast, when an expert learns new information in their field, they don’t make up artificial connections to their memory palace. Instead, they find meaningful connections to what they already know.

      This was essentially the logical memory method espoused by Peter Ramus in the mid-1500's. He's a major source of the reason we don't use a broader number of methods within the art of memory in modern society. We need to remedy this error. I feel like the authors are woefully unaware of a lot of history and psychology here.

    9. In 1971, the psychologist Allan Paivio proposed the dual-coding theory, namely, the assertion that verbal and non-verbal information are stored separately in long-term memory. Paivio and others investigated the picture superiority effect, demonstrating that pictures and words together are often recalled substantially better than words alone.

      Another example of how much of historic memory methods we've dramatically lost and need to regain.

    10. How to best help users when they forget the answer to a question? Suppose a user can’t remember the answer to the question: “Who was the second President of the United States?” Perhaps they think it’s Thomas Jefferson, and are surprised to learn it’s John Adams. In a typical spaced-repetition memory system this would be dealt with by decreasing the time interval until the question is reviewed again. But it may be more effective to follow up with questions designed to help the user understand some of the surrounding context. E.g.: “Who was George Washington’s Vice President?” (A: “John Adams”). Indeed, there could be a whole series of followup questions, all designed to help better encode the answer to the initial question in memory.

      Here they're using the word encode at the bottom of the example, but they're not encoding anything!! They're talking about making other tangential associations which may help to triangulate the answer, but they're not directly encoding the actual information itself.

    11. designed so the user must always engage deeply with the meaning of the question, not its superficial appearance

      They seem to be missing the idea of association in memory techniques. The spaced repetition is working on the form of the question by itself since the card doesn't form a specific or memorable enough associating between the two important pieces of knowledge.

    12. One of us has previously assertedMichael Nielsen, Augmenting Long-Term Memory (2018). that in spaced-repetition memory systems, users need to make their own cards. The reasoning is informal: users often report dissatisfaction and poor results when working with cards made by others. The reason seems to be that making the cards is itself an important act of understanding, and helps with committing material to memory. When users work with cards made by others, they lose those benefits.

      This is actually an incredibly well documented phenomenon in the history of mnemotechniques or ars memorativa. Because creativity for individuals is dramatically different in addition to their prior knowledge and value of links, having custom made images helps tremendously.

      This is also at the root of some of the philosophy of Bartłomiej Beniowski's A Handbook of Phrenotypics for Teachers and Students, Part 1 in 1842.

    13. These are preliminary results, and need more investigation.

      How preliminary can they really be? The idea of spaced repetition goes back to the ancient Greeks and Romans and Hermann Ebbinghaus did psychology research on the topic and was publishing in 1885. Surely they've got to have a better grasp than this indicates here.

  3. May 2020
    1. Now indeed endeavor to imprintin this fashion in your memory the matters which are written out below, ac-cording to the method and diagram for learning by heart demonstrated toyou earlier, so that by experience you can know the truth of my words, whenyou perceive how valuable it is to devote study and labor not just to havingheard the lectures on the Scriptures or to discussion, but to memory-work.

      here's the phrase "learning by heart" translated more familiarly

      I'm curious what the original Latin was?

    2. Therefore it is a great valuefor fixing a memory-image that when we read books, we strive to impress onour memory through the power of forming our mental images not only thenumber and order of verses or ideas, but at the same time the color, shape,position, and placement of the letters, where we have seen this or that writ-ten, in what part, in what location (at the top, the middle, or the bottom)we saw it positioned, in what color we observed the trace of the letter or theornamented surface of the parchment

      I've always been able to generally remember how far into a book and on what part of the page (left/right; top/middle/bottom) the thing was. This obviously is not a new phenomenon, though obviously the printing of texts in the modern age helps standardize this for students in comparison with this particular example which discusses different versions of the same text.

    3. Having learned the Psalms [as a whole], I then devise the same sort ofscheme for each separate psalm, starting with the beginning words of theverses just as I did for the whole Psalter starting with the first words of thepsalms, and I can thereafter easily retain in my heart the whole series one verseat a time; first by dividing and marking off the book by [whole] psalms andthen each psalm by verses, I have reduced a large amount of material to suchconciseness and brevity

      The repeated uses of knowing and keeping things in the heart in this text along with the overlap of memory makes me wonder where the initial phrase "to know by heart" originated. This 12th century text certainly is a reasonably old one, though certainly others may have likely existed before.

    4. Finally, and as fundamentally as there is a numerical memory and a dia-lectical memory, there is a geometry of memory too. Almost every monas-tic mnemotechnical scheme—ladders, roses, buildings, maps—was based ongeometrical figures: squares, rectangles, triangles, circles, and complex refor-mations of these, including three-dimensional structures

      She doesn't mention it, but they're not only placing things in order for potential memory purposes, but they're also placing an order on their world as well.

      Ladders and steps were frequently used to create an order of beings as in the scala naturae or the Great Chain of Being.

      Some of this is also seen in Ramon Lull's Ladder of Ascent and Descent of the Mind, 1305 (Ars Magna)

    5. In mnemotechnic,brevitasrefers to the creating ofsuch ‘‘rich’’ if necessarily ‘‘brief ’’ units. Because there is in principle no limiton the number ofdivisionesa person may have in memory, readers could beencouraged to make ‘‘brief and compendious’’ summaries of materials theyhad learned.

      This is very similar to the idea in TiddlyWiki or Zettlekasten of writing down and storing the minimal amount of information on a card to capture an idea.

    6. As understood by the early scho-lastic philosophers, Aristotle taught also thatevery memory is composed of twoaspects: a ‘‘likeness’’ or ‘‘image,’’ which is visual in nature (simulacrum), and anemotional resonance or coloring (intentio), which serves to ‘‘hook’’ a particu-lar memory into one (or perhaps more) of a person’s existing networks of ex-perience.Memory works by association.
    7. Thus, as an art, memory was most importantly associated in the MiddleAges with composition, not simply with retention.
    8. memory-making was regarded as active; it was even a craft with techniquesand tools, all designed tomakean ethical, useful product.

      Perhaps it was this craft and the idea of making an ethical product that forced Peter Ramus and others to suspend the arts and crafts of memory since many early practitioners encouraged violent, sexual, and other absurd images as a means of maintaining them. This certainly may not have sat well with Puritans using these mnemotechniques to memorize portions of the Bible and their catechisms.

    9. Re-collection is not passive, but rather an activity involvinghuman will and thought; it is often defined as a form of reasoning. One mayconveniently think of this activity in spatial terms, as if memories have beenstored in a variety of places and must be called together in a common placewhere we can become aware of them, where we can ‘‘see’’ them again andknow them in the present.

      I don't use it frequently (enough perhaps), but TiddlyWiki has the ability to open multiple cards (tiddlers) in one view (using a permalink) as a means of giving disparate small pieces of thought a commonplace. Very few other note taking systems do this without relying on a taxonomy mechanism.

    1. The idea here is honestly atrocious. Rote memorization with a hint of spaced repetition. Ugh!

      For someone to call this the John Place method totally demeans the idea of the art of memory.

    1. “In his influential De Copia (1512),” writes Professor Richard Yeo, “Erasmus advised that an abundant stock of quotations and maxims from classical texts be entered under various loci (places) to assist free-flowing oratory.” Arranged under ‘Heads’ and recorded as ‘common-places’ (loci communes), these commonplace books could be consulted for speeches and written compositions designed for various situations — in the law court, at ceremonial occasions, or in the dedication of a book to a patron. Typical headings included the classical topics of honour, virtue, beauty, friendship, and Christian ones such as God, Creation, faith, hope, or the names of the virtues and vices.
    2. While calling memory “the store-house of our ideas,” John Locke recognized its limitations. On the one hand, it was an incredible source of knowledge. On the other hand, it was weak and fragile. He knew that over time, memory faded and became harder to retrieve, which made it less valuable.

      As most humanists of the time may have had incredibly well-trained memories (particularly in comparison with the general loss of the art now), this is particularly interesting to me. Having had a great memory, the real value of these writings and materials is to help their memories dramatically outlive their own lifetimes. This is particularly useful as their systems of passing down ideas via memory was dramatically different than those of indigenous peoples who had a much more institutionalized version of memory methods and passing along their knowledge.

    3. Commonplace books, during the Renaissance, were used to enhance the memory. Yeo writes, This reflected the ancient Greek and Roman heritage. In his Topica, Aristotle formulated a doctrine of ‘places’ (topoi or loci) that incorporated his ten categories. A link was soon drawn between this doctrine of ‘places’ (which were, for Aristotle, ‘seats of arguments’, not quotations from authors) and the art of memory. Cicero built on this in De Oratore, explaining that ‘it is chiefly order that gives distinctness to memory’; and Quintilian’s Institutio Oratoria became an influential formulation. This stress on order and sequence was the crux of what came to be known as ‘topical memory’, cultivated by mnemonic techniques (‘memoria technica’) involving the association of ideas with visual images. These ideas, forms of argument, or literary tropes were ‘placed’ in the memory, conceived in spatial terms as a building, a beehive, or a set of pigeon holes. This imagined space was then searched for the images and ideas it contained…. In the ancient world, the practical application of this art was training in oratory; yet Cicero stressed that the good orator needed knowledge, not just rhetorical skill, so that memory had to be trained to store and retrieve illustrations and arguments of various kinds. Although Erasmus distrusted the mnemonic arts, like all the leading Renaissance humanists, he advocated the keeping of commonplace books as an aid to memory.

      I particularly love the way this highlights the phrase "'placed' in the memory" because the idea of loci as a place has been around so long that we tacitly use it as a verb so naturally in conjunction with memory!

      Note here how the author Richard Yeo manages not to use the phrase memory palace or method of loci.Was this on purpose?

    1. Cloze deletion is, of course, just a fancy way of saying fill in the blank. This might sound trivial, but the simple act forces you to consider the surrounding context and search your mind for an answer. This, in turn, is scientifically proven to form stronger memories enabling you to remember profoundly more of what you've read.
    1. ...conversations take random walks through events and ideas in a manner determined by the associative networks of the participants." --Douglas Hofstadter, Foreward, Sparse Distributed Memory

      This is reminiscent of Zegnat's mention during the Gardens and Streams session of remembering where things were in the IndieWeb wiki by remembering the pathways more so than the things themselves. This is very reminiscent of Australian songlines.

    1. “The Art of Memory in Late Medieval East Central Europe (Bohemia, Hungary, Poland): An Anthology,” co-written by Lucie Doležalová, Rafał Wójcik and myself.
    2. Stabbing one-self with a sword is a typical ‘surprise’ element in 15-16th century mnemotechnics. One can fi nd the same motif in the anonymous fi gurative Gospel (ca. 1470, Figu-rae Evangeliorum), e.g. in the second image of the Gospel of Marc (fi gure 4),40 or in the Logica memorativa of Thomas Murner (1509, fi gure 5).
    3. Konrad Celtis, Epitoma in utramque Ciceronis rhetoricam cum arte memoratiua noua, et modo epi-stolandi utilissimo (Ingolstadt: [s.n.], 1492), 14r-v. EK Inc. 444.

      want to read

    4. Similar lists of 100 words had been in circulation well before Celtis, however, those were not alphabetically designed.
    5. Celtis advises his readers to memorise things with the aid of the alphabet, because by “keeping the natural order” of the letters (servata earundem naturali ordine), the elements or members of our material can be easily retained by memory. According to the ideas presented by Celtis, under each letter of the alphabet one should memorise fi ve words that begin with the same letter, and these could be the images that belong to the locus, i.e. to the letter itself.
    6. Cusanus, being a teacher in mathematics, imagines a more abstract, almost geometri-cal, scheme for the memory houses in which he combined the method of Publicius with the alphabet of Celtis: the images should be contained in three types of houses.
    7. Similar antropomorphic imagines were designed by Johannes Romberch von Host in his Con-gestorium artifi ciosae memoriae,published for the fi rst time in 1520. He associated the declention of nouns to body parts: if we want remember the word “smith” in the nominative case, we should mark him with a blister on his head, in the accusative with a blister on the chest, in the vocative on the belly, etc.; the singular forms are supposed to be dressed up, while the plurals are nude.

      Memory methods for Latin Grammar that could be interesting.

    8. The closest analogue to this nude couple can be found in the work of Jacobus Publicius: a similar woodcut appears in the 1485 edition of his Oratoriae artis epitoma for the fi rst time (fi gure 6).42 However, Publicius does not explain the meaning of that image at all, a phenomenon that is restricted to this one picture in his book. The lack of explanation for these enigmatic images raised the value of the lectures of the professor and at the same time kept the secrecy of the ars.
    9. As Celtis said, “it helps the memory a great deal, if someone knows the things of the world,”37 and Valentinus followed this advice when he refi lled the table of Celtis with meanings of his own.

      This seems to be very common practice in the modern art as many writers suggest using or modifying techniques so that they suit your experience and lived memory. If a different key word comes to you more quickly, then why not use that instead of one supplied by the creator of the system.

      There's also an echoing of this in Beniowski's idea of notions in "A Handbook of Phrenotypics" on the closeness of ideas.

    10. In the Ars memorandi noua secretissima, published in 1500 or 1501,20 Jodocus Weczdorff de Triptis (Weimar) inserted an alphabetical list of words, similar to that of Celtis, but he simply suggested that it could be used as a memory house without any scope for our private associations. Moreover, the alphabetic table of Celtis was included in the famous Margarita philosophica nova of Gregor Reisch, which was probably the most popular handbook of the artes scholars in the fi rst two decades of the 16th century.

      Books on memory that used Celtes' trick

    11. The only exception is the letter A, which appears in the list – unlike the other vowels – and contains fi ve words beginning with the fi ve vowels: a – abbas (abbot), e – eques (knight), i – institor (tax-collector), o – offi cialis (ecclesiastical judge), and u – usurarius (usurer).

      Here he's interestingly removed the vowels, which is certainly reminiscent of the later Major System structure in at least some respect.

    12. The criticism of Celtis turns against the entire tradition of 15th century art of memory, but particularly against the teachings of Jacobus Publicius,11 whose Oratoriae artis epito-mata he had excerpted both in his summary of the Ciceronian rhetoric and the treatise on letter writing.
    13. One of the most interesting new treatises is contained in the Epitoma in utramque Cic-eronis rhetoricam of Cornad Celtis, the ‘German archhumanist’
  4. Apr 2020
    1. Ebbinghaus had also documented the serial position effect, which describes how the position of an item affects recall. The two main concepts in the serial position effect are recency and primacy. The recency effect describes the increased recall of the most recent information because it is still in the short-term memory. The primacy effect causes better memory of the first items in a list due to increased rehearsal and commitment to long-term memory.
    2. It was later determined that humans impose meaning even on nonsense syllables to make them more meaningful. The nonsense syllable PED (which is the first three letters of the word "pedal") turns out to be less nonsensical than a syllable such as KOJ; the syllables are said to differ in association value.[5] It appears that Ebbinghaus recognized this, and only referred to the strings of syllables as "nonsense" in that the syllables might be less likely to have a specific meaning and he should make no attempt to make associations with them for easier retrieval.

      This seems roughly similar to Major Beniowski's phrenotypic associative memory. Some of these nonesense syllables could more easily be associated than others. Perhaps going through them one could do phrenotypic distances?

      Would Ebbinghaus have known of Beniowski's work? Evidence?

    1. In 1887, Twain crossed paths with Professor Loisette a ‘memory doctor’ who made a living peddling a system of memory techniques bearing his name. Inductees into the “Loisette system” were sworn to secrecy, and charged the modern equivalent of five hundred dollars to learn the “natural laws of memory” which the doctor claimed to have discovered. Twain enrolled in a several-week-long course and at first was deeply impressed, even going so far as to publish a testimonial in favour of the Loisette system.
    2. In 1885, he patented “Mark Twain’s Memory Builder: A Game for Acquiring and Retaining All Sorts of Facts and Dates.”
    1. I ran across this 5 year old article courtesy of a few recent tweets:

      This took me back to a time and something I’d forgotten writing, that has made me rethink where we are now: https://t.co/COgNQnutZr

      — Kate Bowles (@KateMfD) April 25, 2020
      <script async src="https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>

      “power is distributed very unevenly throughout the global network of higherEd institutions. If digital innovation is left to the market, we will continue to see scale and standardisation dressed up as personalisation and differentiation.” ⁦@KateMfDhttps://t.co/pqskuKPbQj

      — Robin DeRosa (@actualham) April 25, 2020
      <script async src="https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>

      What surprises me is that it's about education and pedagogy that starts off with a vignette in which Kate Bowles talks about the unknown purpose of Stonehenge.

      But I've been doing some serious reading on the humanities relating to memory, history, and indigenous cultures over the last few years. It dawns on me:

      I know what those stones are for!

      A serious answer provided by Australian science and memory researcher Dr. Lynne Kelly indicates that Stonehenge and similar monolithic sites built by indigenous cultures across the world are--in fact--pedagogic tools!!

      We've largely lost a lot of the roots of our ancient mnemonic devices through gradual mis- and dis-use as well as significant pedagogic changes by Petrus Ramus, an influential French dialectician, humanist, logician, and educational reformer. Scholar Frances Yates indicated in The Art of Memory that his influential changes in the mid-1500's disassociated memory methods including the method of loci, which dated back to ancient Greece, from the practice of rhetoric as a field of study. As a result we've lost a fantastic tradition that made teaching and the problem of memory far worse.

      Fortunately Lynne Kelly gives a fairly comprehensive overview of indigenous cultures across human history and their use of these methods along with evidence in her book Memory Code which is based on her Ph.D. thesis. Even better, she didn't stop there and she wrote a follow up book that explores the use of these methods and places them into a modern pedagogy setting and provides some prescriptive uses.

      I might suggest that instead of looking forward to technology as the basis of solutions in education, that instead we look back---not just to our past or even our pre-industrial past, but back to our pre-agrarian past.

      Let's look back to the tremendous wealth of indigenous tribes the world over that modern society has eschewed as "superstitious" and "simple". In reality, they had incredibly sophisticated oral stories and systems that they stored in even more sophisticated memory techniques. Let's relearn and reuse those techniques to make ourselves better teachers and improve our student's ability to learn and retain the material with which they're working.

      Once we've learned to better tap our own memories, we'll realize how horribly wrong we've been for not just decades but centuries.

      This has been hard earned knowledge for me, but now that I've got it, I feel compelled to share it. I'm happy to chat with people about these ideas to accelerate their growth, but I'd recommend getting them from the source and reading Dr. Kelly's work directly. (Particularly her work with indigenous peoples of Australia, who helped to unlock a large piece of the puzzle for her.) Then let's work together to rebuild the ancient edifices that our ancestors tried so desperately to hand down, but we've managed to completely forget.

      The historical and archaeological record: The Memory Code: The Secrets of Stonehenge, Easter Island and Other Ancient Monuments by Dr. Lynne Kelly

      A variety of methods and teaching examples: Memory Craft: Improve Your Memory with the Most Powerful Methods in History by Dr. Lynne Kelly

    1. Your machine is a library not a publication device. You have copies of documents is there that you control directly, that you can annotate, change, add links to, summarize, and this is because the memex is a tool to think with, not a tool to publish with.

      I can't help but think about Raymond Lull's combinatorial rings which he used as a thinking tool. Or Giordano Bruno's revision of Lull's tools as described in De Umbris Idearum. Given their knowledge of the art of memory stemming from rhetoric in combination with his combinatorial tool, he was essentially sitting on top of an early form of a memex.

      I also can't help but think about Kicks Condor's Fraidyc.at reader tool that pulls in wiki content from TiddlyWikis and which have the potential to also make wikis publishing tools as well.

    1. Experienced practitioners [...] don't have to plod step by step through such a listing of concepts and questions. When they encounter a set of ideas or engage in debate, they can speed through the familiar relationships and spot at a glance the concepts that haven't been taken into account and the questions that haven't been asked. When they work out their own arguments or ideas, they can look at each point from a galaxy of different perspectives that might never come to mind without the help of the combinatorial system and the mental training it provides. Like the Lullian adepts of the Renaissance, they supplemented the natural capacities of their minds with the systematic practices of the combinatorial art. This, in turn, the art of memory seeks to do with the natural capacities of the human memory.  De Umbris Idearum, 'Working Bruno's Magic', p. 164
    1. In his play Il Candelaio he mentions the tarot: an innkeeper asks a scoundrel in his establishment if he likes to play tarot; the scoundrel replies ”A questo maldetto gioco non posso vincere, per che ho una pessima memoria”. (“At this cursed game I cannot win, because I have a terrible memory”)
    2. Looking up “ars memoria” on Wikipedia, I found a suggestion that for some people in the Middle Ages, looking at certain images was considered a means of gaining all knowledge (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Art_of_memory). It quotes Yates, Art of Memory: The practitioner of the Ars Notoria gazed at figures or diagrams curiously marked and called 'notae' whilst reciting magical prayers. He hoped to gain in this way knowledge, or memory, of all the arts and sciences, a different 'nota' being provided for each discipline. The Ars Notoria is perhaps a descendant of the classical art of memory, or of that difficult branch of it which used the shorthand notae. It was regarded as a particularly black kind of magic and was severely condemned by Thomas Aquinas.

      I'm intrigued by the word shorthand in this setting along with the idea of notoria or notae, but I don't hold much hope...

    3. Later in the thread just cited, John Meador quoted another text, 1594, attesting to something more astounding: ...two especial uses, I have often exercised this art for the better help of my own memory, and the same as yet has never failed me. Although I have heard some of Master Dickson, his schollers, that have prooved such cunning Cardplayers hereby, that they could tell the course of all the Cards and what every gamester had in his hand. So ready we are to turn an honest and commendable invention into craft and cousenage." -Hugh Platt: The Jewell House of Art and Nature 1594 This art, or at least its claims, goes somewhat beyond remembering what cards have been played: they actually can use it to know what the other players have in their hand, before playing the cards. Platt considers this a kind of cheating (usually "cozenage", from "cozen", first use 1573, probably from the Italian cozzone, horse trader, per http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/cozen).
    1. The Art of Signs (Latin Ars Notoria) is also very likely a development of the graphical mnemonic. Yates mentions Apollonius of Tyana and his reputation for memory, as well as the association between trained memory, astrology and divination.[37] She goes on to suggest It may have been out of this atmosphere that there was formed a tradition which, going underground for centuries and suffering transformations in the process, appeared in the Middle Ages as the Ars Notoria, a magical art of memory attributed to Apollonius or sometimes to Solomon. The practitioner of the Ars Notoria gazed at figures or diagrams curiously marked and called 'notae' whilst reciting magical prayers. He hoped to gain in this way knowledge, or memory, of all the arts and sciences, a different 'nota' being provided for each discipline. The Ars Notoria is perhaps a descendant of the classical art of memory, or of that difficult branch of it which used the shorthand notae. It was regarded as a particularly black kind of magic and was severely condemned by Thomas Aquinas.[38]
    2. In any case Quintilian makes it clear that non-alphabetic signs can be employed as memory images, and even goes on to mention how 'shorthand' signs (notae) can be used to signify things that would otherwise be impossible to capture in the form of a definite image (he gives "conjunctions" as an example).[36]
  5. Mar 2020
    1. Imagine an associate with a photographic memory and excellent pattern recognition who digested and analyzed millions of cases. Would you want that associate working for you for less than the price of one typical billable hour every month?
    1. We long ago admitted that we’re poor at scheduling, so we have roosters; sundials; calendars; clocks; sand timers; and those restaurant staff who question my integrity, interrupting me with a phone call under the premise of “confirming” that I’ll stick to my word regarding my reservation.
    2. A closely-related failing to scheduling is our failure to remember, so humans are very willing to save information on their computers for later.
    1. Luhmann also described his system as his secondary memory (Zweitgedächtnis), alter ego, or his reading memory or (Lesegedächtnis).

      Some interesting words in German for secondary memory and reading memory.

    1. Our brain can only hold to so much information at a time.

      of course this is why I like mnemonics and specific techniques like the method of loci. We can not only retain more but the memories can be stored in interesting ways that increase their potentially creativity like creating a Zettelkasten in the brain.

  6. Feb 2020
    1. All we know for certain, through forensic testing, is that the manuscript likely dates to the 15th century, when books were handmade and rare.

      This may provide some additional proof that it's a memory aid in the potential form of a notebook or commonplace book. What were the likelihoods of these being more common that other books/texts? What other codes were used at the time? Was the major system or a variant in use at the time?

    2. a roughly 240-page medieval codex written in an indecipherable language, brimming with bizarre drawings of esoteric plants, naked women, and astrological symbols. Known as the Voynich manuscript, it defies classification, much less comprehension.

      Something I hadn't thought of before, but which could be highly likely given the contents: What if the manuscript is a personal memory palace? Without supporting materials, it's entirely likely that what's left on the page is a substrate to which the author attached the actual content and not having the other half, the entire enterprise is now worthless?

  7. Dec 2019
    1. His answer is that our creative minds are being strengthened rather than atrophied by the ability to interact easily with the Web and Wikipedia. “Not only has transactive memory not hurt us,” he writes, “it’s allowed us to perform at higher levels, accomplishing acts of reasoning that are impossible for us alone.”

      This is where I disagree with Thompson. The potential for IA is there but we have retrogressed with the advent of the web.

    2. Socrates and his prediction that writing would destroy the Greek tradition of dialectic. Socrates’ primary concern was that people would write things down instead of remembering them. “This discovery of yours will create forgetfulness in the learners’ souls, because they will not use their memories,” Plato quotes him as saying. “They will trust to the external written characters and not remember of themselves.”

      The dialectic process is important particularly in the context of human to computer communication and synthesis. Here Socrates articulates the importance of memory to this process and how writing undermines it. If there is an asymmetry between the mind of the writer and reader the written work provides method of diffusing information from one mind to another. This balance of the mind is true of human to computer interaction as well. We need to expand our memory capacity if we are to be expand the reasoning capacity of computers. But instead we are using computers to substitute our memories. We neglect memory so we can't reason; humans and computers alike.

  8. Nov 2019
    1. Writing on Gustave Moreau, Proust detects a universe of analogies, paintings that document an “intoxication of mind” in which reality is a “mysterious country” of unlike objects “resembl[ing] one another.” Describing Rembrandt, he finds an exacting individualism visible in a manipulation of light “that bathes [Rembrandt’s] portraits and his pictures [in] the very light of his thought […] a personal light in which we view things when we are thinking for ourselves.” Jean-Baptiste-Siméon Chardin was probably Proust’s favorite painter. He sees in Chardin a vision “combining things and people in those rooms which are more than a thing and perhaps more than a person, rooms which are the scene of their joint lives, the law of affinities and contrarieties […] the shrine of their past.”
    1. Further, as stated, by merely glancing at the pictorially indicated recipe of the present invention the cook can ascertain at a glance the required ingredients, can ascertain whether such ingredients are on hand, and, if not, the needed articles will be more easily remembered in purchasing the days supply of groceries, etc.

      an example in the wild of visual memory being stronger than other forms.

    2. Fourteenth-century recipe collections that have survived to today, such as Viandier pour appareiller toutes manières de viandes, Libre de sent sovi, Daz bûch von gûter spîse, and Forme of Cury, were written by professional cooks to use as an aide-mémoire for themselves or other professional cooks.
    1. It is challenging to study how pneumococci control virulence factor expression, because cues of natural environments and the presence of an immune system are difficult to simulate in vitro
    1. Finally, I decided to build it around all my favorite stories that touched on calculus, stories that get passed around in the faculty lounge, or the things that the professor mentions off-hand during a lecture. I realized that all those little bits of folklore tapped into something that really excited me about calculus. They have a time-tested quality to them where they've been told and retold, like an old folk song that has been sharpened over time.

      And this is roughly how memory and teaching has always worked. Stories and repetition.

    1. Christman said that he first came up with the idea to look at the effects of eye movements on memory after learning that leftward eye movements activate the right brain hemisphere and that rightward movements activate the left hemisphere. He thought that horizontal eye movements might, therefore, improve memory by helping the hemispheres interact.

      This may be related to people looking up when trying to remember dates (for example) but looking down when trying to remember locations? (Need to look this up, but I know I've heard a comedian referencing this sort of behavior in a joke.)

    1. René Descartes designed a deck of playing cards that also functioned as flash cards to learn geometry and mechanics. (King of Clubs from The use of the geometrical playing-cards, as also A discourse of the mechanick powers. By Monsi. Des-Cartes. Translated from his own manuscript copy. Printed and sold by J. Moxon at the Atlas in Warwick Lane, London. Via the Beinecke Library, from which you can download the entire deck.)

      My immediate thought is that this deck of cards was meant as a memory palace. I'm curious what training in rhetoric/memory methods Descartes must have had?

    2. It is worth asking why ebooks and e-readers like the Kindle treaded water after swimming a couple of laps. I’m not sure I can fully diagnose what happened (I would love to hear your thoughts), but I think there are many elements, all of which interact as part of the book production and consumption ecosystem.

      For me, and potentially for a majority of others, our memories have evolved to be highly location specific. It's far easier for me to remember what I've read when I read a physical book. I can often picture what I was reading at the top, middle, or bottom of the left or right page. This fact in addition to how far I am in the book gives me a better idea of where I am with respect to a text.

      These ideas are very subtle and so heavily ingrained in us that they're not very apparent to many, if at all.

      See also Knowledge and Power in Prehistoric Societies: Orality, Memory and the Transmission of Culture by Lynne Kelly (Cambridge University Press, 2015)

  9. Oct 2019
    1. Of other significance, this passage is recognized as the first example of cosmological mapping in the history of Greece.[4]

      I should read this reference below) with respect to Lynne Kelly's indigenous people's thesis of memory palaces. Perhaps it ties together the original story with broader history and the Greek's place within it and provides additional support for her thesis.

      Germaine Aujac. (1987). The Foundations of Theoretical Cartography in Archaic and Classical Greece. The History of Cartography, volume 1 (pp. 130-147) University of Chicago Press.

    1. With this approach, neurons that show E-SARE–driven expression in response to stimuli are permanently labeled by the fluorescent protein during the time window specified by the drug
    2. Expression of a drug-inducible Cre recombinase downstream of E-SARE enabled imaging of neuronal populations that respond to monocular visual stimulation and tracking of their long-distance thalamocortical projections in living mice
    1. The feedback loop permits sustained induction of recombinant proteins without massive quantities of inducer.
    1. “The margins are full of images of disembodied body parts, plants, animals, even portraits of cross-eyed kings, which relate to the main body of text and act as a mnemonic for the reader,” Greene says. “Even though you open the manuscript knowing it is a medical text designed for practical use, nothing quite prepares you for seeing a disembodied leg, posterior, or penis pointing at salient parts of the text!”

      memory illuminated manuscripts

    1. in the absence of tamoxifen, it exhibits some activity
    2. A technique common in rodents is the use of Cre recombinase lines that are inducible at specific developmental time points (Figure 3b). The most common form of inducible Cre is CreERT2, which contains a modified estrogen receptor binding domain that prevents Cre from entering the nucleus in the absence of a ligand
    3. strong promoters capable of driving expression of microbial opsins or fluorescent proteins in specific populations can exhibit leaky expression elsewhere. This low-level leak may be virtually undetectable as light responsiveness or fluorescence but can be a serious issue when expressing Cre recombinase.
    1. creating improved technologies for large-scale recordings of neural activity in the live brain is a crucial goal in neuroscience
    1. new toolkits for chronic labeling of active ensembles will provide a much awaited experimental basis to interrogate various aspects of neuronal circuits underlying long-term plastic changes of the brain, such as during nervous system development, during establishment of long-lasting remote memory over months, or in association with age-related neuronal changes over several years.
    2. new direction of functional labeling involves conversion of transient expression from activity-dependent promoters into a permanent labeling based on tamoxifen-dependent recombinases
    1. This gene fusion approach will allow us to assay the induction of gene expression in as few as one cell

      Recombinase memory as a reporter for expression in 1 cell

  10. Sep 2019
    1. son of Memory

      One must wonder in what sense he meant this given the ars memorativa of the age. Compare this to the ancient interpretation of a "biography" in the first century with that of a 19th century biography as indicated in Bart Ehrman's opening chapters of A Historical Introduction to the Early Christian Writings.

    1. Given technological advances and a trend to promote digital annotation by students in school, empirical findings are mixed regarding the evidence-based benefits of handwritten annotation for learning.

      There are also now digital tools like Anki, Mnemosyne, and even Amazon's notebook tools that allow highlights and annotations in books to be transferred into digital flashcards to be used for spaced reviews of knowledge and information. I suspect that even students that heavily highlight their textbooks are rarely reviewing over those highlights after-the-fact, and have generally found this to be the case when asking those I see actively doing so.

  11. Aug 2019
    1. Now we can ask, ‘Have I seen iron at some threshold?’ ‘Have I seen some nitrate?’ And have every microbe write it down. As one thinks about long-term incubation, this is a really powerful tool, because even six months later we can pull out the DNA and see what happened.”
    1. Growth history influences starvation-induced expression of uspA, grpE, and rpoS and subsequent cryotolerance in Escherichia coli O157:H7
    2. in E. coli a form of ‘memory’ of past phosphate limitation leads to a faster response to successive periods of phosphate limitation, and that this faster response may be survival enhancing

      phosphate starvation memory

    1. these technologies all require destruction of samples and prevent us from analyzing dynamic changes in molecular profiles, phenotypes, and behaviors of individual cells in a complex system

      current omics and single cell technologies => High resolution x destructive single time-point measurements

    2. Live cell imaging is capable of analyzing spatiotemporal dynamics of molecules and cells with fluorescent proteins or probes, but only for a limited number of objects, which can be observed by microscopy
    1. The psychological Interpretation according to which the “I” has something ‘in the memory’ [“im Gedächtnis”] is at bottom a way of alluding to the existentially constitutive state of Being-in-the-world.

      Heidegger: inwardness of memory ["Gedächtnis"] as an allusion to "Being-in-the-world" ||

    1. The genetic/epigenetic relation is a dimension of différance qua the history of life. The question then is that of a specification of différance differing and deferred, of the possibility of such specification, if it is true that Leroi-Gourhan’s major point consists in putting into question a clear break between the animal and the human. His way of broaching this problem brings him back, in the final analysis, to the heart of a simple opposition, albeit one shifted to the also quite traditional level of faber/sapiens. He is brought back in the same stroke (the coup of the second origin) to the metaphysics of an opposition between the inside and the outside, the before and the after, of the animal human and the spiritual human, and so on. We are trying to preserve and to broach the aporetic impossibility of simply opposing the interior to the exterior in speaking of an instrumental maieutics that alone permits an understanding of how tools do not derive from a creation or from a consciousness present to itself, master of matter, but pursue a process engaged long before the rupture yet nevertheless constitute a rupture— a new organization of différance, a différance of différance. Now, if the central concept is in fact that of epiphylogenetic memory, allowing for both the contestation of oppositions and the description and preservation of differentiations, it does not seem to us to have any equivalent in grammatological deconstructions. We shall develop this question further on the level of linear writing. Without such a concept, it seems to us impossible to specify the différance, differing and deferring, with respect to différance in general qua the history of life in general, or to say what the human is or is not. We are left: with the ambiguity of the invention of the human, that is, of the subject of the verb “to invent,” that which holds together the who and the what, as being that which binds them while separating them; this is, then, différance— this double movement, this intersection of reflection, this reflecting whereby the who and the what are constituted as the twin faces of the same phenomenon.

      Stiegler: (partial) critique of "différance" || interested to know whether Derrida ever responds to this point directly

    1. a high-fidelity memory device might allow researchers to identify cell populations responsive to specific events and track their progression through the cellular response
    2. suggested that low basal expression coupled with switch-like activation is required to maintain memory; growth rate was also found to significantly impact memory loop protein sustainability following cell division.

      Requirements for toggle switch memory

    1. Transcripts with more polyadenylation are more likely to be translated compared to those without

      mRNA translation level memory

  12. May 2019
    1. using recombinases can be challenging because their reactions are slow (requiring 2–6 h) and often generate mixed populations when targeting a multicopy plasmid
  13. Mar 2019
  14. Feb 2019
    1. This supplemented the individual's memory and ability to visualize. (We are not concerned here with the value derived from human cooperation made possible by speech and writing, both forms of external symbol manipulation. We speak of the manual means of making graphical representations of symbols—

      The expression "manual means of making graphical representation" makes me think of photography as a memory aid or augmenting tool. Although, of course, it would not necessarily refer to a symbolic portrayal.

      Interestingly, neuroscience today affirms our memory is far from a simple pointing to the past function, but it actually alters or edits the memory itself each time we go back to it and probably the subject who remembers changes in the process. Could that be an example of how technological aids can augment our brain processing of memories?

      I have recently explored this idea on my blog in a post called As We May Remember (a wink to the Vannebar Bush essay) http://eltnotes.blogspot.com/2019/02/as-we-may-remember.html

    2. symbolic portrayal

      Language as a symbol. Relationship to memory.

  15. Jan 2019
    1. they are not meant to be substituted for a recollection that may fail. They constitute, rather, a material and a framework for exercises to be carried out frequently: reading, rereading, meditating, conversing with oneself and with others.

      Looking at one's academic notes in this sense, what if students were taught from a young age to view their notes and note taking as a continuous process which required frequent study and conversation? Even in college, students often only refer to notes as a means of remembering a specific fact, statement or concept.

    2. notebooks serving as memory aids. Their use as books of life, as guides for conduct

      Hm. So in the analogy above, does that mean "others" in a community serve as reminders of how not to live (in the case of non-ascetics) or how to live (other ascetics)?

      Plato wouldn't like that (Phaedrus, writing as destructive to memory).

    1. Our extensions also have implications for theories ontrust.

      Bookmarked section for later consideration of proposal studies on how time interacts with trust in time- and safety-critical social coordination.

    2. Therefore, training should focus on learning how toquickly recognize volunteers’ volition in participating inan emergent group, the tasks they might engage in, andthe support they might need to carry out those tasks.Such training could also help people to recognize thebenefits and dangers of generalized trust. It could alsohelp people to quickly evolve a coordination mecha-nism that does not rely on what people know, but oncompiling and communicating a narrative of the actionsthat volunteers take, so that others are able to assess forthemselves what actions they could take to help.

      Majchrzak et al continue to suggest that emergent response training could reconceptualize a new role for emergency management professionals, aside from the default coordination/management. Further, they suggest that citizens could be trained to participate.

    3. ur examination suggests that by expandingthe context in which TMS theory is applied to includeemergent response groups, insights can be gained intotheir internal dynamics. The three indicators of the levelof development of a TMS provide a useful frameworkfor organizing these insights in the exhibit.

    4. The urgency of time may make it too onerous forthe extra effort of articulating actions as they are beingperformed, yet most emergency response requires somecommunication.

      Interaction of time (tempo/pace) and breakdowns in articulation work.

    5. Explicitly articulated narratives mayalso make clearer that multiple sequences of actions maybe occurring simultaneously, thus resolving role conflictsby allowing multiple ways to accomplish a task

      Evokes Schmidt and Bannon's articulation work in CSCW.

    6. Emergent response groups may also use a mechanismof creating a community narrative (Boland and Tenkasi1995), which is a running narrative of the actions takenand not taken, the decisions made, and the theories inuse. Narratives do not represent a single shared under-standing of a domain; rather they represent the mul-tiplicity of events and actions a community is taking,as members are taking them. Narratives may be articu-lated explicitly or understood implicitly.

      SBTF after-action report, as an example. But who is the audience for this narrative?

    7. Whenemergent response groups first come together, membersare likely not to ask one another about who knows what;instead, they are likely to ask about what is knownabout the situation and about the actions taken thus far(Dyer and Shafer 2003, Hale et al. 2005). The cogni-tive structure that they develop for the group centersnot around people, but on action-based scenarios thateither have been or might be carried out. These scenariosinclude decisions, actions, knowledge, events, and feed-back (Vera and Crossan 2005).

      Suggested extensions for TMS theory:

      "1. Tailor the Role of Expertise"

      "2. "Replacing Credibility in Expertise with Trust Through Action"

      "3. "Coordinating Knowledge Processes Without a Shared Metastructure"

    8. On the surface, the lack of sta-ble membership suggests that a shared mental modelmay not be viable or even desired in emergent responsegroups. Time may be too precious to seek consensus onevents and actions, and agreements may make the groupless flexible to accommodate to changing inputs.

      Evokes pluritemporal concerns about tempo, pace and synchronization.

    9. hus, we believe challenges occur in all three indica-tors of the level of development of a TMS—expertisespecialization, credibility, and expertise coordination—requiring a need to consider extending theorizing abouteach indicator for emergent response groups.

      Ways to extend TMS to emergent groups:

      "1. Reconceptualize the Role of Expertise Specialization as a Basis for Task Assignment"

      "2. Assessing Credibility in Emergent Response Groups"

      "3. Expertise Coordination in Emergent Response Groups"

      These extensions evoke boundary objects and invisibility

    10. Moreland and Argote(2003) suggest that the dynamic conditions under whichthese groups form and work together are likely to havenegative effects on the development of transactive mem-ory.

      Are there workflow or technology breakdowns that could help ameliorate the negative effects?

    11. Research on TMS has identified three indicators of thelevel of development of a TMS (Lewis 2003, Morelandand Argote 2003):1.Memory (or expertise) specialization:the tendencyfor groups to delegate responsibility and to specialize indifferent aspects of the task;2.Credibility:beliefs about the reliability of mem-bers’ expertise; and3.Task (or expertise) coordination:the ability of teammembers to coordinate their work efficiently based ontheir knowledge of who knows what in the group.The greater the presence of each indicator, the more de-veloped the TMS and the more valuable the TMS is forefficiently coordinating the actions of group members.

      Three indicators of the level of sophistication of the system:

      • Memory specialization (think trauma/hospital care CSCW studies)

      • Credibility

      • Task coordination

    12. A TMS can be thoughtof as a network of interconnected individual memorysystems and the transfer of knowledge among them(Wegner 1995). Individuals who are part of a TMSassume responsibility for different knowledge domains,and rely on one another to access each other’s expertiseacross domains. Expertise is defined in the TMS litera-ture to broadly include the know-what, know-how, andknow-why of a knowledge domain (Quinn et al. 1996),what Blackler (1995) refers to as embodied competen-cies. Expertise specialization, then, reduces the cognitiveload of each individual and the amount of redundantknowledge in the group, while collectively providingthe dyad or group access to a larger pool of knowl-edge. What makes transactive memory transactive arethe communications (called transactions) among individ-uals that make possible the codifying, storing, retrieving,and updating of information from individual memorysystems. For transactive memory to function effectively,individuals must have a shared conceptualization of whoknows what in the group.

      Majchrzak et al describe how TMS is oeprationalized as a network.

    13. TMS theory, a theoryof group-level cognition, explains how people in collec-tives learn, store, use, and coordinate their knowledge toaccomplish individual, group, and organizational goals.It is a theory about how people in relationships, groups,and organizations learn who knows what, and use thatknowledge to decide who will do what, resulting in moreefficient and effective individual and collective perfor-mance.

      Definition of transactive memory systems theory -- used in org studies to understand how knowledge is coordinated among groups.

  16. Dec 2018
    1. Alzheimer's disease (AD) is not normally diagnosed until later in life, although evidence suggests that the disease starts at a much earlier age. Risk factors for AD, such as diabetes, hypertension and obesity, are known to have their affects during mid-life, though events very early in life, including maternal over-nutrition, can predispose offspring to develop these conditions. This study tested whether over-nutrition during pregnancy and lactation affected the development of AD in offspring, using a transgenic AD mouse model. Female triple-transgenic AD dam mice (3xTgAD) were exposed to a high-fat (60% energy from fat) or control diet during pregnancy and lactation. After weaning (at 3 weeks of age), female offspring were placed on a control diet and monitored up until 12 months of age during which time behavioural tests were performed. A transient increase in body weight was observed in 4-week-old offspring 3xTgAD mice from dams fed a high-fat diet. However, by 5 weeks of age the body weight of 3xTgAD mice from the maternal high-fat fed group was no different when compared to control-fed mice. A maternal high-fat diet led to a significant impairment in memory in 2- and 12-month-old 3xTgAD offspring mice when compared to offspring from control fed dams. These effects of a maternal high-fat diet on memory were accompanied by a significant increase (50%) in the number of tau positive neurones in the hippocampus. These data demonstrate that a high-fat diet during pregnancy and lactation increases memory impairments in female 3xTgAD mice and suggest that early life events during development might influence the onset and progression of AD later in life.
  17. Nov 2018
    1. Why, though, do we not romanticize our preservation? The same matter of chance, of the fleeting nature of fate exists on the other side of the coin. What would have happened if we were better rested, if our energy was better preserved, if we managed our time and said what we really mean? Rarely do we approach whether we get eight hours of sleep with the same guilt as we do whether or not we attended a party, even when, according to sleep expert Matthew Walker, sleep deprivation prevents the brain from remembering information, creating new memories, and sustaining emotional well-being.

      A great observation!

  18. Oct 2018
  19. Jul 2018
    1. The fact that stimuli that have high association values are easily learned and remembered means that it is easier to learn new meanings for stimuli that already have multiple meanings;

      this fact is unbelievably true !

    2. it is much easier to remember places, objects, or rooms in a building by name than by number, because names have higher association values than numbers.

      a clear proof of the importance of association in learning process.

  20. Mar 2018
  21. Feb 2018
  22. Jan 2018
    1. all his memories of the days when Odette had been in love with him, which he had succeeded, up till that evening, in keeping invisible in the depths of his being, deceived by this sudden reflection of a season of love, whose sun, they supposed, had dawned again, had awakened from their slumber, had taken wing and risen to sing maddeningly in his ears, without pity for his present desolation, the forgotten strains of happiness.

      Here music brings back memories similar to how, in the Overture, the madeleine calls up memories for the narrator. Psychology explains this phenomenon, of a sensory experience bringing back a vivid memory. We used to think memories were stored in one area of the brain but it seems that memories are more a neural pattern connecting different sensory systems. So a certain smell can set of the firing of all the other sensory experiences associated with it. Apparently smell is the sense that is best at bringing up memories but sounds and tastes can definitely do so too.

  23. Aug 2017
    1. Some people think that these system calls are a good way to improve the performance of a high-performance process on a system. A common use case I’ve seen in the real world is to try to call mlockall() on a program that’s supposed to running with very high performance. The reasoning is that if the program is paged out to disk, that will reduce performance; therefore mlockall() will improve things.If you try to actually use mlockall() in this way you might run into some difficulties because most systems have a very low default ulimit on the number of pages a process can lock. With some twiddling of the default ulimits you can get this working, but perhaps it’s worth considering why the default ulimits are so low in the first place.
  24. Jun 2017
    1. Quoting Media Theorist & philosopher Wolfgang Ernst on his concept of processual memory: “The web provides immediate feedback, turning all present data into archival entries and archival entries into data – a dynamic agency, with no delay between memory and the present. Archive and memory become meta-phorical; a function of transfer pro-cesses.”, which Ernst describes as an economy of circulation – permanent transformations and updating. There are no places of memory, Ernst states, there are simply urls. In other words; digital memory is built from its archi-tecture, it is embedded in the network and constituted from how it links from one to another.

      there are no places of memory, there are simply urls.

  25. May 2017
  26. Mar 2017
    1. The result of this externalization, Blair notes, is that we come to think of long-term memory as something that is stored elsewhere, in “media outside the mind.” At the same time, she writes, “notes must be rememorated or absorbed in the short-term memory at least enough to be intelligently integrated into an argument; judgment can only be applied to experiences that are present to the mind.”

      Indeed memory is being atrophied as a result of easy to access externalization, the temptation to just offload it onto the computer makes the forgetting curve even sharper. The concepts don't present to the mind when needed because since we didn't commit to our memory we can hardly perceive correlations to what we previously read. Simply we miss our chances to recall & connect new concepts and knowledge because we don't commit them to our memory.

  27. Feb 2017
    1. the longer must the mind be exerted in carrying forward the qualifying mem-ber ready for use.

      We've had some earlier discussion on dividing "Memory" out of the Rhetorical Canon, and Spencer seems pretty opposed to requiring the use of an audience's memory in oratory. We've also discussed in class Socrates' warning that literacy would be the pharmakon that destroys memory, and I think this is an extension of that idea.

    1. Usually, learning immediately after training is so unstable that it can be disrupted by subsequent new learning until after passive stabilization occurs hours later

      Very interesting point about passive stabilization in memory formation.

  28. Jan 2017
    1. memory under the domain of rhetoric either.

      I still don't fully understand the role of memory in rhetoric at this point in history, either. I know that it was eventually rejected as an outdated practice of the Greeks, but when exactly did that push-back begin? Was it already underway here, or was memorization-and-oration-as-rhetoric still in vogue? I'm struggling a bit to follow the chronology.