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Psychology: Memory

            This article describes the Memory process of Human beings from the aspects of both neurobiologists and psychologists, and also explains different kinds of memory phenomenon as well as examples of forgetfulness. The neurobiologists are interested in figuring out the "hardware" of memory, while psychologists are in search for the software of memory and want to solve the everyday problems of memory. From an example of Clive Wearing, who, as a result of encephalitis, could not remember a single event in his past but whose procedural memory was perfectly in tact, psychologists were able to infer that some sections of the mind store facts, while other sections store procedures. This allowed psychologists to make the generalization that "there is no single entity we call "memory"." Memories, they say, are also differentiated by how long they are. Short term memory, or STM allows us to remember telephone numbers for a minute or more, until the memory is pushed out or overwritten. The STM's average capacity is five to nine bits of information. Long term memory, on the other hand, can store much more information (up to 100 trillion bits), through complex arranging and cross-indexing by subject. Because of cross-indexing, our senses such as sight, and especially smell can have a strong effect on evoking memories. In a study by Cathy Folk, subjects were exposed to specific smells, and for each subject the smells evoked strong emotions and memories in them. From these facts, Folk concluded that "Some of the same structures in the brain handle odor reception, basic emotional responses, and long-term memory." .
             Emotions, in fact, are in important part to most LTM's. In experiments, stress improves memory, because it releases adrenaline. Studies have also shown, that people's retrieval of memory is greatly bettered when they have the same or similar emotions as when they learned the information.

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