I’m interested in human memory. I’m interested in memory because while I sometimes have trouble with my own, I’ve been watching my mother lose hers completely. She was first diagnosed with MCI – mild cognitive impairment about three years ago. It manifest as short term memory loss, which came on quite suddenly after a nasty fall she took about two years previous to onset. At first she had trouble remembering sort of minor things – what she had for breakfast, hair appointments, and so forth. Over the past 18 months, her MCI has become much more severe. Much more.
At first, I read everything I could get my hands on about Alzheimer’s Disease. Not the most uplifting topic, but there you have it. As mom’s situation has progressed and become part of our family’s daily lives, I’ve begun to think more about memory as the faculty that defines us as humans – that we are our memories.
I’m just finishing a book by Gordon Bell and Jim Gemmell called Your Life, Uploaded. It originally came out in 2009 under the title Total Recall. It’s one of the more interesting books I’ve read in a while. Bell set out to keep a complete electronic record of his life creating what he calls e-memory.He saves, scans, uploads, downloads every aspect of his life. He calls it lifelogging – not to be confused with lifeblogging. (Speaking of blogs, here’s how to get to theirs.) His intent is not to blast his life all over the Web – his intent is to create as complete a record of his life as possible for his private use as he sees fit.
His idea of e-memory has ramifications for education, health, work, and personal life. This is both a idea book and a book that make you want to start building your own e-memory. If I’m destined to lose my bio-memory, I better start creating my e-memory now.
All I will need to do is come back and take another look at the image above whenever a solicitation for a contribution regarding Alzheimer’s research lands in my mailbox.
If you’re interested in the some of the latest thinking about the cause of Alzheimer’s, Laura Sanders has written a good article in Science News called Memories Can’t Wait.
. . . and you just might enjoy a better memory for a longer time. Read more about neurogenesis and changing your brain.
I think one of the things we mourn when people we care about die is that we will never be able to create new memories with them again.
Life seems to be about the memories we can make and the memories we can keep. Memory makes us human. I can’t see it working any other way.
Came upon an interesting site today called Mindapples. Normally I’ll pop into a site like this, look around, and pop back out.
But today I created an account, contributed 5 Mindapples, and look forward to the daily interaction that may develop from an association with this site. I find that spending a lot of time on the web (the nature of the job) causes my mind to turn to twisted mush sometimes. I can get so far out there following link after link that a need real breadcrumbs to find my way back. My daily mantra? Focus, focus, focus. Success rate? Sketchy.
Could someone toss me a mindapple? I don’t know if I’ll stick with the site or not, but topics having to do with the mind interest me. Especially in light of my mom’s difficulties with memory loss and whether I’m previewing my own future when I’m with her.
While I was reading through the Mindapples blog, I read an entry with the following quote by Steve Jobs:
“I’m convinced that the only thing that kept me going was that I loved what I did. You’ve got to find what you love. And that is as true for your work as it is for your lovers. Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it. And, like any great relationship, it just gets better and better as the years roll on. So keep looking until you find it. Don’t settle.”
That’s is a Mindapple that I’ll savor for quite a while.