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Memory special: Is technology making your memory worse?

发布时间:2019-03-01 10:06:01来源:未知点击:

Christopher Anderson/Magnum By Helen Thomson IS AN ostrich’s eye bigger than its brain? This kind of trivia question was once a cognitive workout, but when was the last time you really pondered a question, rather than simply turning to the internet for help? Then there are phone numbers and friends’ birthdays: information we once stored in our brain is now held in the smartphone in the palm of our hand. Outsourcing memories, for instance to pad and paper, is nothing new, but it has become easier than ever to do so using external devices, leading some to wonder whether our memories are suffering as a result. Probably the largest data dump is of snapshots of events, whether it is thousands of photos posted on social media or status updates documenting our lives. You might think that taking pictures and sharing stories helps you to preserve memories of events, but the opposite is true. When Diana Tamir at Princeton University and her colleagues sent people out on tours, those encouraged to take pictures actually had a poorer memory of the tour at a later date. “Creating a hard copy of an experience through media leaves only a diminished copy in our own heads,