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Thread: You have Eidetic Memory, How Do You Use it?

  1. #1 You have Eidetic Memory, How Do You Use it? 
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    You have eidetic memory.

    What it is: The ability to visually remember things you see, EXACTLY as you saw them. Forever (as long as you live). This does not relate to sound, just visuals.

    So how do you use it?

    What do you use it for?

    I ask because I am going to use this concept in fiction, and the more ways it can be used, the more I know of how characters are likely to use it (more than one has it).

    Possiblities I Can Think Of:

    Artists could use it, even though they would still have to get their hand movents down correctly and learn a bit of technique. But their memory would be good enough to trace stuff they have seen.

    You would never ever have to buy a book, just read it in the library. You could also trash a lot of documents after reading them the first time, unless you're worried about getting brain damage in a car accident.

    Overall, you would need a lot less records. You would be like a walking encylopedia, since everything you ever read, you could re-read in your mind, PERFECTLY.

    I doubt you would have to buy any movies either, as you could remember those perfectly as well. So at most, most of your movies will be AT the movie theater.

    So your no longer going to buy books unless you wanna save on gas trips to the library.


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  3. #2  
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    What about downsides to it?
    Being unable to forget traumatic events.
    Always remembering your mistakes, in living detail.


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  4. #3  
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    Quote Originally Posted by dan hunter View Post
    What about downsides to it?
    Being unable to forget traumatic events.
    Always remembering your mistakes, in living detail.
    The idea was for an aliens race originally, so I compensated for it. They don't have the ability to feel sadness or regret. But they do have a strong need to perfect things they do. As well as the other emotions.

    As for humans, that could be a bad thing sure, but it's not as as if they have to reply the traumatic memories in their head if they don't want to. It's like a video recording, you don't have to play it.
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  5. #4  
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    So you end up with aliens who are obsessed with correcting past mistakes instead of feeling sadness or regret over them?
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  6. #5  
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    Quote Originally Posted by dan hunter View Post
    So you end up with aliens who are obsessed with correcting past mistakes instead of feeling sadness or regret over them?
    They don't have the regret, so I wouldn't call it an obsession. Mistakes are just silly to them. It's like, "Okaay. that was stupid. Moving on." With super eidetic memory, the chances of making a mistake are less than a human, unless of course they don't understand orders to begin with.

    They also have a lower threshold for patience than humans do, but their desperate need for perfection in what they do is even stronger.

    I got this idea from another user.

    So if they have a problem, they will throw 5000 scientists/workers at it, only allowing them 3 meals a day and toliet breaks.

    Until the problem is solved. They can do this since they have sleep requirements that are less than normal for humans. And no, I have not worked out exactly what their rest periods are.

    But I'm thinking about maybe two hours of sleep is all they need.


    At any rate, it gives them a plausible, psychological reason for being developing super advanced technology that humans don't have.

    Also from the user:

    Aliens idea of perfection difffers, depending on the person. Some want to pursue a perfect life of leisure, while others devote themselves to perfecting some sort of skill.

    Leisure lovers are looked down upon if thye don't contribute to society in some way.

    But it's enough to say that the aliens have androids to do jobs they don't wanna do, so they can focus totally on what they actually want to do. Especially the scientists.

    Alien workers exist solely because they want to learn a skill and get good at it. Even if a robot could do the job, they let the aliens who want to learn a skill learn it. Assuming this does not go against he majority's wishes. Since lack of patience is still a thing.
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  7. #6  
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    Well i would probably make a program that runs around 1 page a second in wikipedia for hours everyday and language tutorials and have everything wikipedia has and start making havoc in the world :P, i mean remembering everything, becomming from stupid to super genius in just a year is the dream :P
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  8. #7  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Painter View Post
    Well i would probably make a program that runs around 1 page a second in wikipedia for hours everyday and language tutorials and have everything wikipedia has and start making havoc in the world :P, i mean remembering everything, becomming from stupid to super genius in just a year is the dream :P
    I

    I understand the motive, but you still have to UNDERSTAND what you read to make use of it.

    That will take time, the only advantage you have is that you can read it anytime, anywhere.

    Although I would suggest being careful how you use it.

    Watching a movie in your head while at a boring office meeting can backfire on you when the boss asks you a question and you LITERALLY weren't even looking to pay attention.

    On the plus side, you would NEVER be bored. Even at night while in bed, you could replay stuff you have seen and get smarter. But ultimately it's how much you put into practice what you learn.

    We learn by doing.


    This is pure visual memory. No sound included. Like a silent video that you can pause, skip, fast forward or rewind.
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    Quote Originally Posted by lorbo View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Painter View Post
    Well i would probably make a program that runs around 1 page a second in wikipedia for hours everyday and language tutorials and have everything wikipedia has and start making havoc in the world :P, i mean remembering everything, becomming from stupid to super genius in just a year is the dream :P
    I

    I understand the motive, but you still have to UNDERSTAND what you read to make use of it.

    That will take time, the only advantage you have is that you can read it anytime, anywhere.

    Although I would suggest being careful how you use it.

    Watching a movie in your head while at a boring office meeting can backfire on you when the boss asks you a question and you LITERALLY weren't even looking to pay attention.

    On the plus side, you would NEVER be bored. Even at night while in bed, you could replay stuff you have seen and get smarter. But ultimately it's how much you put into practice what you learn.

    We learn by doing.


    This is pure visual memory. No sound included. Like a silent video that you can pause, skip, fast forward or rewind.
    porn, snuff said.
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  10. #9  
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    They could end up being like great big awesome computers and libraries - tons of information available at their fingertips... But how much capacity for innovation and creative thought? That's an entirely different process than recall, and eidetic memory is only about recall, not about active thought.

    You might also consider introducing search algorithm issues. I'm out on the skinny branches of my recollection here - there's a set of functions that govern how quickly a search algorithm can function, given how much information it has to search through. The algorithms get more sophisticated over time, but the volume of information also gets larger. Since the "search function" in their brains would be hardwired by evolution, they wouldn't be able to upgrade to a more sophisticated search algorithm. So as their species amasses more data over time, and each member tries to collect and store more information, it could feasibly take longer and longer to access that information.

    So for giggles, you could introduce a specialization solution to the problem. Maybe each member of the species has a base set of information that they gain as a child, but as they age and begin to show interest or aptitude, they have to specialize. Then they only have access to data pertaining to that specialty.

    That would allow them to engage in creative thinking and innovation within that field as well as minimize the search function recall issues. It could also set the stage for some very interesting cross-species comparisons when they meet humans... since we tend to be very much generalists. Even "specialists" of the human species are adept at a great many things - especially if you're talking about a species that has specialization as a survival technique so their brains don't asplode.

    ... I may have ran on a bit more than you were expecting. I find this an intriguing and fun game.
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  11. #10  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Anathema View Post
    They could end up being like great big awesome computers and libraries - tons of information available at their fingertips... But how much capacity for innovation and creative thought? That's an entirely different process than recall, and eidetic memory is only about recall, not about active thought.

    You might also consider introducing search algorithm issues. I'm out on the skinny branches of my recollection here - there's a set of functions that govern how quickly a search algorithm can function, given how much information it has to search through. The algorithms get more sophisticated over time, but the volume of information also gets larger. Since the "search function" in their brains would be hardwired by evolution, they wouldn't be able to upgrade to a more sophisticated search algorithm. So as their species amasses more data over time, and each member tries to collect and store more information, it could feasibly take longer and longer to access that information.

    So for giggles, you could introduce a specialization solution to the problem. Maybe each member of the species has a base set of information that they gain as a child, but as they age and begin to show interest or aptitude, they have to specialize. Then they only have access to data pertaining to that specialty.

    That would allow them to engage in creative thinking and innovation within that field as well as minimize the search function recall issues. It could also set the stage for some very interesting cross-species comparisons when they meet humans... since we tend to be very much generalists. Even "specialists" of the human species are adept at a great many things - especially if you're talking about a species that has specialization as a survival technique so their brains don't asplode.

    ... I may have ran on a bit more than you were expecting. I find this an intriguing and fun game.
    While a nice a idea, I prefer to not limit the aliens that way.

    The fun comes with humans realizing that these humanoid aliens, (who look just like humans, just different colours, as well as extra abilites I haven't mentioned, like shapeshifting), don't ACT totally human. I was going to include some non-humanoids who act more human than the humanoid type, just for a bit of strange irony.

    The emotional issues is where the fun is. These guys take patience pills JUST to interact with humans/other races in good taste. Without them, they are more likely to grow impatient with humans sooner. Even with them, they have a limit, which varies with the individual (according to their temperament/upbringing).

    Once the patience ends, bad things can and do happen. It really depends on how mad they are, since they lack sadness, that leaves... you guessed it, rage. And they can easily take out entire groups of people with their handheld weapons, just by switching them to the wide beam setting.

    That is what could happen, when patience wears off and they are enraged.
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  12. #11  
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    And the super eidetic memory is not totally godmode, even though it is in some ways. It's just a silent video recording.

    All that means is that they don't have to keep nearly the amount of records that humans have, only if they become brain damaged.

    So records would be more for insurance, just in case they do become brain damaged for some reason, or incapacitated.

    This also means they have ZERO excuses for saying they don't know the rules after they were shown them. The only alibi they could use in a court setting is to say they didn't UNDERSTAND the rules, assuming they saw them.

    Since they can't even lie (another feature they have), things run rather smoothly, although they can withold information and be vague. Crime does exist, and the criminals rely heavily on technology to avoid even being detected (space travel to other worlds).
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  13. #12  
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    Quote Originally Posted by lorbo View Post
    You have eidetic memory.

    What it is: The ability to visually remember things you see, EXACTLY as you saw them. Forever (as long as you live).
    Not sure it would be half as good as you think it might be. Imagine a monkey that could perfectly remember everything he viewed inside a spaceship.....he'd still be at a lost to put that visual memory to any good use.

    There's also the fact, at least in humans, that the more extraneous cognitive load, even as simple as following text while using a scroll bar on an Ipad, significantly reduce one's comprehension. Recalling something you'd seen is an added cognitive load that will likely reduce understanding.
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    The ability will work just as well as I stated.

    People watch videos all the time, and it has not hurt their memory.

    I am not presuming the brain has an upper limit on what it can handle, which is what you seem to be doing. Probably because you believe in evolution, but that's a whole nother can of worms. That said, I intended to get views on how having that abitliy would effect society. Not so much as to whether it was viable, because any pet fiction theory is VIABLE to the person that created it, otherwise they never would have made it.

    Trying to persuade a person otherwise is futile and is a waste of debating time. So you don't think my idea is viable, fine. I don't care. That's not what I was seeking to know anyway.


    I don't post to see if people agree with me, I post to get information that I might find valuable. Rarely, I actually get it sometimes, but by and large, the most prolific posters are also the most disgusting in their online conduct.


    And I'm not referring to you by the way.
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    Quote Originally Posted by lorbo View Post
    The ability will work just as well as I stated.

    People watch videos all the time, and it has not hurt their memory.

    I am not presuming the brain has an upper limit on what it can handle, which is what you seem to be doing..
    Because in humans limited short term memory is a well established scientific fact. See here, for my specific example about even simple task such as the bit of concentration to scroll through text reducing reading comprehension:
    http://www.twosides.info:8080/content/rsPDF_230.pdf
    --
    Probably because you believe in evolution,
    Well of course...it is an established fact.

    I don't post to see if people agree with me, I post to get information that I might find valuable.

    Well good, that's why I'm providing a few different considerations, and adding a little bit of depth by distinguishing between visual memory and ability to understand meaningful information from that memory.
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  16. #15  
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    Quote Originally Posted by lorbo View Post
    You have Eidetic Memory, How Do You Use it?
    I would take all the sand on a specific part of the beach, and reconstruct it grain by grain in a different location; preferably somewhere with less noisy youngsters with their silly beach-ball games.
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  17. #16  
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    I dunno lorbo. I don't want you to give away your whole story, but I think I need more context. Right now, I'm having a hard time seeing these aliens as either believable or sympathetic. As you've presented them, they have perfect eidetic memory... with perfect recall and none of the search-function problems that we might expect... and with none of the complications that result from remembering the image but not understanding the content and meaning of that image... and all the other aspects of eidetic memory that we can relate to and that would make them believable complex characters. You've given us only that they get very frustrated with humans. So they're basically gods without patience?

    Good sci-fi is reasonable in it's complexity - that's what makes it good. Most of what has been suggested are things that allow you to make edietic memory more complex and therefore more believable. Challenges that your aliens will need to have overcome at some stage in their development. You don't necessarily have to make it central to your story... but your novel will be more believable and achieve better resonance if they're at least part of the back story.

    And understanding the challenges and the pitfalls of eidetic memory will define the boundaries within which it gets used. Without those boundaries, asking "how do you use it?" will only get you sophomoric answers.
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    He won't be able to answer you. If a users name is orange it means they are banned (sometimes this is only temporary but I think in this case it is permanent).
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