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Neurohacking - Tutorials
Written by NHA   
Sunday, 05 February 2012 12:46
Article Index
Neurohacking Tutorial 8 - Imagination, Memory and Prediction
Neuroanatomy of Memory - Structure and Function
Everywhere and Nowhere
How Memories are Made
What Happens if Things Go Wrong?
Core Skills for Memory Health and Improvement
Imagination and Prediction
NHA Guide to Methods & Technology
The Most Important Bits To Remember
Hacks & Exercices
Notes, References & Answers
All Pages

 


Towards Entelechy

Logic will get you from A to Z; imagination will get you everywhere.

Intelligence is not the ability to store information, but to know where to find it.

Albert Einstein

 

Reality leaves a lot to the imagination.

John Lennon

 

Stories of imagination tend to upset those without one.

Terry Pratchett

 

Imagination will often carry us to worlds that never were, but without it we go nowhere.

Carl Sagan

 


 The Most Important Bits to Remember

For You

Congruous association

Against You

Incongruous association

 

Learning cycle: Concentration - observation - modelling - practice - variation -coordination

Memory process: Receiving - perceiving - encoding - consolidation - retrieval - reconsolidation

 

Perception is an emergent property of the interaction between imagination and reality.

The mind is a prediction engine.

The inner model is a virtual landscape that mimics the outside world, with all its forces and pronciples and rules. The objects we see exist as collections of neural circuits and electrical impulses. [74]

In developing networks 1- 3 we are mastering the art of adapting ourselves to better fit in with the needs of the environment & circumstances.

Memory, prediction and perception are the processes imagination uses to understand the past, the future and the here and now.

Imagination uses images from current perception and prediction to enable memory, images from memory and prediction to enable current perception, and images from current perception and memory to enable prediction.

Our perception and beliefs control the expression of our genome.

 

Hopefully by now you have a basic grasp of the triune nature of imagination as used in the processes of perception/memory/prediction, how imagination uses its own version of the COMP VC cycle to make memories, and what other functions imagination relies on to get things right.

We hope you have also grasped the basic idea of N3’s 'inner model’ and can now see how physical movement and spatial awareness are related to recalling factual information, and how concrete abilities build up the networks that can then be used for abstract tasks.

 

Now we're going to go back to the table we made in the last tutorial of some of the things we already know and look at how they fit together with what we are learning here. We'll add bits to this table after every tutorial from now on, so it's a good idea to keep a copy of this in your captain's log.

In tutorial 7 we put together a table of what we know about associations between golden rules, core categories (core concepts) and networks. Let’s put some more pieces in the puzzle: we've also looked at neurotransmitters and their roles in linking body and brain, brain and mind. Without looking back to remind yourself, can you remember which transmitters are particularly associated with each core concept?

Again from memory, can you associate any transmitters to the types of animal behaviors they motivate?

And finally, can you remember the main factors of intelligence we learned about in basics tutorials? Can you see how any of these associate with particular animal behaviors or neurotransmitters?

We’ve added these three to the table below:

 

Core categories

Matter

space

density

time

energy

power

Golden rules

 

 

If the brain doesn't

Behave as though

 

You become more like

 

Cells that fire together

 

Know yourself

 

 

Always do things in

 

networks

1

2

3

4

5

6

Factors of intelligence

 

physical senses,

attention

alertness,

orientation

motivation

memory,

emotion,

imagination

creativity,

tool-use,

synthesis

intellect,

computation,

analysis

planning,

judgment,

strategy

Transmitters

serotonin

dopamine

oxytocin/cortisol

acetylcholine

norepinephrine

endorphins

Animal behaviors processed

 

grooming

hygiene

birthing

 

hunting

courting

warning

migration

making allies

bonding

defense

camoflage

nest building

cooperation

nurturing

 

resource- distribution,

status display

 

strategy,

problem-

solving

 

 

 

The link between our imagination, perception and memory in N3 is an unexpected and startling one, and can take a while to really get the hang of and understand.

 

Awareness of the environment through physical sensation is what we previously thought of as the whole of perception. But perception itself (much of which process we can now see in beautiful detail via scanning) proves to be the art of imagining an effective reconstruction of reality.

 

We learned in Tutorial 7 how perception is accomplished by putting together the ‘physical sensation’ cellular perception percepts (recognized by similarity or difference to those already in memory), with associated concepts already in memory and variations that we are able to imagine and projecting the result. Perception is thus impossible without imagination and memory –and as we learned in previous tutorials, even the senses themselves cannot wire up properly without the initial sensory perceptual experiences that relate to hard wired eidetic memory.

 

Through imagination we can ‘re-cognize’ (reassemble from memory) types of things that we have seen before, even if they are a bit different. We can ‘re-member’ (put back together) events and things long past, ‘re-calling’ or ‘re-collecting’ them from their present storage as disparate ‘bits’. Once we put enough bits together to recognize anything, the brain imagines all the chains of information in memory associated with it. When we play with them we can ‘re-create’ realities by imagining new combinations of associations.

 

From time to time…you will forget all this

Do you know what the biggest problem with memory techniques is? Remembering to use them. No joke. Many popular methods work, but if you don't have the habit of using them, you'll forget to when you need them most. So if you take the time to learn a technique, make a conscious effort to use it until it becomes automatic.

A recent study [67] compared the brains of 10 participants in the World Memory Championships who have above-average memories with 10 people with normal memories. Both groups had "high-average" intelligence, but the groups used their brains differently during memory tests.

Close to all of those in the exceptional memory group activated the parietal cortex and the hippo strongly, using association and eidetic imagery to obvious benefit.

From brain imaging data, we are now able to see a significant correlation between different learning strategies and brain activity. These tools now allow us to see individual patterns of brain activity and how they differ from one person to the next.

Individuals who use the following two strategies often have better memory performance than those who use them rarely or not at all:

1) A visual inspection strategy in which participants carefully studied the visual appearance of objects.

2) A verbal elaboration — or word-based strategy — in which individuals constructed sentences about the objects to remember them.

Visual inspection and verbal elaboration have both also shown in testing to result in improved memory.

We hope by now you are ready to begin training up your memory, so there are plenty of exercises below. Remember that every aspect of intelligence you improve also upgrades other parts. Latest studies are showing that such mental cross-training does work.

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences [69] reports that a group of college students improved their performance on a pattern-recognition test and a commonly used intelligence test — after training their working memory.

The researchers found that those who had trained on a working memory test scored on average more than a control group in a test of 29 questions assessing the ability to solve problems, use abstract reasoning, and adapt to new situations. The effect was larger among those who trained for longer.

After the study was completed, one researcher received letters from some of the participants. “They said that after the training they were more attentive,” he says. “They could more easily follow lectures, or had less trouble understanding the papers they read.” [69]

 

How much can your memory improve?

The brain has around 100 trillion connections joining billions of neurons and every single junction has the potential to be part of a memory. New connections can also be made, so the memory potential capacity of the human brain is effectively pretty massive. In fact, we don’t know the limit yet.

Humans can also maximise their capacity, because human memory differs from a computers in several important ways. For one, it can be selective. Items considered of interest are retained better than those that are not. So personal and meaningful and creative memories can be held in their billions while dry facts we learned at school and never used will fade away. Secondly, the brain works via associations. If you cannot remember a fact, you can link it to a meaningful memory and use the latter to retrieve the former –this is how mnemonics work.

Wondering how much we can improve is really asking the question, "is there a limit to human memory?" So what are researchers to say when asked, “Is there a limit to memory?” The only fair response is "We don't know". And it's okay not to know things in science, as long as we know we don't know them. That's what gives us interesting puzzles to solve.

 

 



Last Updated on Monday, 29 May 2017 13:32