Robot Dreams

Sid Chaudhury direwolfc at
Tue Sep 12 18:55:09 EST 2000

scroll down for response.

> Everything that we "pay attention to" will get recorded into our
> memory. This has been well demonstrated by various neuropsychological
> experiments.
> In one test called the Recall Test, 15 cards with various images or
> words are flashed, and than the subject is asked to recall the images
> or words presented, regardless of their original order of presentation.
> Only 6 or so on average is recalled. That does not mean that the memory
> of all 15 cards are not stored in the brain.
> In another test called the Recognition Test, the 15 cards are flashed
> to the subject and then those cards are shuffled in with another set of
> unseen 15 cards. The 30 cards then are flashed one by one and the
> subject is asked to identify which cards he has already seen. On
> average, 97% of the cards were correctly recognized, even when pausing
> for over 20 minute delay after presenting the first 15 cards.

    I don't think that this recall test proves anything other than the fact
that our brain stores a lot of memory, which you stated.  But this hardly
supports a hypothesis that the brain uses the sleep period to 'clear out'
useless information.  Do we subconsciously sort out what is useful and what
is not?  Subconsciously deciding importance and sorting seems a little
extreme.  Also, i very much doubt, that even with the immense amount of
information the brain 'records' during the day, that it will 'fill up' like
the RAM on a computer that must then be emptied like a cache to make room
for the next day.
    I think that memories are created and stored continuously.  Also, the
amount of 'importance' that a memory is from the hippocampus, which recent
studies have shown deals with the allocation of 'attention' to memory, thus
causing some events that use more attention to be able to be stored and
recalled more easily.  The more attention was 'allocated' to the event, the
stronger connection the memory has with the network.  This connection is
strengthened through repeated activiation of such memories.  What happens to
the 'useless' everyday memories is up for pure speculation.  It seems likely
that 'camcorder' memory is stored  and lost at a constant rate, as in you
will remember something that you passed by five minutes ago, and the further
away from the time at which the mundane event occured, the less chance you
will have of accessing that memory.  Possibly the inactivity of such a
neuron leads to reallocation of another more recent memory (again,
    Whatever the case, it seems to me that you are treating the brain more
like a computer than what it is. While we cannot yet answer very much about
memory, I don't know how much credibility your 'memory dump' theory has.
The brain has an almost limitless capacity of storage, especially compared
to computers.  I don't think the brain can be 'full' as you put it, and i
don't think that we at a subconscious level sift through the gargantuan
amount of information and sort what is 'needed' and what can be thrown out.
as i stated earlier, the hippocampus assigns importance to memories in
'real-time' based on the 'allocation' of 'attention'.  So chances are,
useless memories are just lost in the immense network, while useful memories
remain connected.

> That shows that the brain is like a camcorder. Everything is stored
> that we pay attention to. If everything would be stored, our brain
> would certainly become full quite soon. So special filtering is needed
> to filter out useful information to keep, and clean out the unuseful
> ones so next Morning we wake up with a fresh clean mind. Dreaming could
> have such a major purpose.
> Supermemory techniques also demonstrate that everything gets recorded.
> Techniques to access data are used by supermemory experts by building
> up associative links to them.
> Perhaps Schizophrenia is a result of an overloaded brain. When the
> brain gets full, new memory gets written out of control onto areas
> where useful memory is already stored. The stable neural network
> becomes unstable as the wiring of neural networks will begin to deform
> into unstable randomness, and neurons begin sending signals randomly,
> resulting in hallucinative effects. That is my guess.
> George Bajszar
> Sent via
> Before you buy.

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