Tuesday, March 06, 2007

A New Look at How Memories are Made

Ever thought about how memories are stored in your head? Previous research suggests that the hippocampus (a part of your brain) stores memories over the course of a day, then downloads it to the neocortex (another part of your brain) for long-term storage.

However,
as I learned at Scientific American today, memories may be immediately recorded in both the hippocampus and neocortex. That's bad because the hippocampus is basically cleared of its memories when you sleep.

Maybe this explains why you forget certain things, and not others. If it's immediately recorded in the hippocampus, consider it gone in 24 hours. But if it's recorded in the necortex, it lives on. At least that's how I understand it, and I admit that I'm usually confused by the time I get two or three sentences into a SciAm article.

But let's assume I got it right when reading the piece. I suppose the question is, how do I get all me memories to be recorded in the neocortex? And is that why some people have better memories than others? Because most of their memories go there? Also, is that why repetition is a good way of learning? Because eventually, one of those reps makes it into the neocortex?

No comments:

About Me

My photo
I started pound360 to channel my obsession with vitamins, running and the five senses. Eventually, I got bored focusing on all that stuff, so I came back from a one month hiatus in May of 2007 (one year after launching Pound360) and broadened my mumblings here to include all science.