THOUGHT EXPERIMENT: How accurate is your short-term memory

THOUGHT EXPERIMENT

 

Have someone slowly read this list out loud. (If you do not have anyone handy, read the list to yourself, then turn away so you can’t see the list.) Wait a few moments then write down all the words you remember within three minutes.

                             

sour           nice                candy                  

honey         sugar              soda                 

bitter          chocolate       good                 

heart          taste                cake                 

tooth          tart                  pie 

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.Explanation is below.

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How many did you remember? Most people falsely remember the word sweet as being on the list. The word isn’t there, but it is strongly suggested by the words that are on the list. Memory is associative, and thinking about one thing can get you thinking related thoughts. Remembering the words candy and honey and sugar and others that are associated with sweetness bring that word sweet to mind so strongly that it seems like part of the original list.

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Michael Michalko is the author of the highly acclaimed Thinkertoys: A Handbook of Creative Thinking Techniques; Cracking Creativity: The Secrets of Creative Genius; ThinkPak: A Brainstorming Card Deck and Creative Thinkering: Putting Your Imagination to Work.

http://creativethinking.net/WP01_Home.htm

 

 

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