What is a memory?

Discussion in 'Mayberry Lounge' started by motorboatJones, Sep 17, 2013.

  1. motorboatJones Bird Law

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    Ever thought about what a memory really is. Not rote learning but remembering a point in time stored somewhere in your brain. Is it a chemical or some form of tissue? Why do we have memories? I remember in Blade Runner how the replicants had memories built into them that's how important they are to us.
     
  2. bcordova Brown Belt

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    I'm not really sure. I do know that different people remember the same event differently.
     
  3. Liquid Smoke Great artists steal™

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    All your experience are encoded by neural activity. To put it simply a memory is your brain repeating the neural activity of a past event.

    For instance when looking at the Sistine Chapel a map of the image is encoded in your visual cortex. If you think of it later there is an analogous encoding being performed. I say analogous because the memory is never identical to the original experience.

    What is mind? Doesn't matter. What is matter? Never mind.
     
  4. Rob Battisti HR for HR

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    neurons bro, neurons.
     
  5. punkmother calf cruncher fan

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    how do people have memories of things that didn't happen? a misfire of neural activity?
     
  6. edco76 huh? Platinum Member

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    True. Brains are weird.
     
  7. Tankeray Salvation Denied.

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    Its a meme
     
  8. Liquid Smoke Great artists steal™

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    Good question. The brain is capable of creative thought not just representations of external events. Usually false memories are the result of experiences being too painful to recall causing us to repress the actual events.

    As far as false negative memories, there has been court cases where a person truly believes they were a victim of a crime that didn't happen, my guess is inventing victimhood allows an individual to rationalize their own decisions and the effects they have on their life.
     
  9. motorboatJones Bird Law

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    Still don't know what it is other than maybe electrical activity. How can such a thing exist 20-30-40-50 years after it was created?

    Anyway, while googling I came up with this.

    Also, apparently every time you recall a memory you risk the chance of altering it.
     
  10. Gus Fring Brown Belt

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    Memories are assholes that keep all the bad shit in and choose to fail us when we need it the most.
     
  11. TheeFaulted Inzer Belt

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  12. punkmother calf cruncher fan

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    i understand creative thought; but how does the brain register the neural activity as a memory if it never took place? does the brain create it's own "coding" for the event (that didn't happen)? so instead of recording it is writing?
     
  13. Uchi Mata Preaching the gospel of heel hooks and left kicks

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    Memories are about reproduction. There isn't some static representation in your brain that could be termed a 'memory' per se, memories don't exist until they are recalled in response to some stimulus. The potential is there in terms of ways your neurons have been conditioned to respond to certain stimuli, but it's not set and there's a huge stochastic element in reproduction which is why the character of your memories change over time. Basically you experience some stimulus that is similar to past stimuli, and in response your neurons fire in a pattern that's a response to that stimulus. The response can be an action, or just an association of some sort. For example, if you have learned to associate the smell of a certain perfume to a girl you used to date, if you smell that perfume later your brain will recognize the stimulus and start generating related patterns, leading to you visualizing your old girlfriend. Another example would be a trained reaction like slipping a punch, where you've trained your brain to recognize an oncoming punch and duck in response, so when you see the punch coming you act without consciously thinking by ducking. That is another example of memory being reproductive in that it reproduced your trained reaction in response to a specific stimulus.

    How this all happens involves a lot of neurochemistry and many different areas of the brain and isn't terribly well understood, though it's a very active area of research.
     
  14. Uchi Mata Preaching the gospel of heel hooks and left kicks

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    The brain can take many past experiences and synthesize them into new 'memories'. Also, if you continually 'remember' something that didn't happen you're essentially intentionally creating a stimulus to trigger the reproduction of that memory going forward. But since it never actually happened, you typically don't have a lot of detail built into the memory which may be why 'rediscovered/repressed' memories tend to change a lot with each telling. I have memories that I have verified did not happen, but all the events that take place when I remember them did happen at various times, just not together in sequence. Really this is a pretty useful function of the brain, because if you could only remember things in the sequence they happened it would be pretty hard to create novel associations from disparate experiences for learning. It just gets weird when people think they remember things that never happened the way they remember them.
     
  15. motorboatJones Bird Law

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    I remember as a small kid riding my bike on the street and seeing a bag of trash on the road and while still riding I bent down far enough to grab the bag of trash. I felt like a stuntman.

    Nothing stimulated me to remember that. It's just one of thousands of events in my life I have stored somewhere in my mind.

    Whenever I smell bad feet I remember taking TKD with a buddy of mine and one day we were helping each other stretch and his foot was on my shoulder and it was horrible. That's the not the same kind of memory, more like an association, I am talking about.
     
  16. weed ベルセルク

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    what's amazing to me is your brain's ability to subconsciously remember.


    like I swear in some dreams I feel like I'm super high on shit & I haven't messed with shit for quite some time now.
     
  17. jabba the punk Purple Belt

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    The mind is genuinely an epicly amazing and mysterious marvel of nature.

    In essence, it's nothing more than a computer made from organic tissue opposed to plastics an metals. Really makes you wonder what consciousness really is and how the lines that separate us from computer are actually not so thick if at all there.

    Anyways, what the dookie do we know? Nothing really.
     
  18. Michaelangelo Okay USA Platinum Member

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    I'm looking forward to downloading our memories onto flash drives in the future.
     
  19. AncientEnemy Emelianenko, Fedor Emelianenko

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    after i quit smoking i would have dreams where i was high, and one where i was tripping on acid and it was pretty damn real.
     
  20. weed ベルセルク

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    I fucking wish I had a delete option
     

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