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Many similar questions here ask either about working or short-term memory, or about various tricks and techniques to efficiently remember information. My question is, is it possible to improve the capability for remembering long-term itself? So that learning/memorizing something would take less time or repetition, and the acquired knowledge/information will be stored for longer and with less distortions.

The effect might not be permanent, but it should be prolonged and substantial. To illustrate my point, let's assume for argument's sake that learning poems has the effect of improving long-term memory. This would mean that, after regularly memorizing new poems for several weeks, i find that i'm able to memorize new poems spending less time, the poems retain remembered for longer. I'm also able to remember content of non-fiction and fiction texts better too, so that i can recall tricky facts and logical inferences, which before memorizing poems i tended to forget. So, is there a method to improve the general efficiency of your long-term memory? In other words, ability to retain more information for longer periods with less effort?

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I'd say most mnemonic systems aim to improve long-term retention and accessibility, not just working memory. Are you sure the other questions you've seen pertain to working memory enhancement? Bear in mind that the duration of working memory is generally no longer than the attention span; it seems somewhat hard to define concretely, but I think most would consider working memory to last less than an hour at most. –  Nick Stauner Mar 27 at 7:59

1 Answer 1

Memories aren't static. And like any physical memory source, it has its own memorizing limits. So there are no permanent effects here. You can improve your memory capacity with different training methods, but effects decrease with time if you stop it, just like with muscles. There are also displacement and packing mechanisms that make you remember more/evaluate things faster, but instead you become "awkward" in other purviews.

UPDATE: Your example represent how memorizing is working - you did something once, brain make some new neuron connections and when you trying to do something similar brain use it and try to optimize it if possible. So to improve your brain possibilitis you just need some brain workouts. It doesn't really only about long-term memory. For clearer and longer memorizing you just need more new/optimized neuron connections.

Simple scheme looks like:

  1. Find something new to you (Learning poems)
  2. Repeat it until it gets easier (now you spent 1 days instead of 3)
  3. Go to step 1 (start learn scenes)

P.S. Thanks for editing my bad english

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Interesting ideas. Some sources to back these up would be great? For example, is there is evidence supporting that "you can improve your memory capacity with different training methods"? –  James Oct 3 at 10:21
@James i can give you a link to some russian article series about brain. Also you can find yourself some tips & tricks about mnemonic memorizing. –  Sugar Oct 27 at 15:47

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