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Looking for patterns
Most citizen science projects involve large amounts of data than can be boiled down into a visual challenge that requires pattern analysis. The curator of these (and other) projects is Zooniverse, which at latest count has 45 citizen science projects you can get involved in! Such projects are also good for developing your visual search skills, meaning your ability to focus and your visual acuity.
Some new projects are presented as games, such as:
The Alzheimer’s Prevention Registry brings together leading researchers with people who are interested in taking part in Alzheimer’s studies. It's become increasingly clear that successful interventions need to take place early, and this project aims to help this along by not only helping to educate and inform people, but also to help research along by finding participants for prevention studies.
Humans have a long tradition of holding genes responsible for individual differences in behavior (of course, we called it "blood", then, or "family"). In the 20th century, a counter-belief arose: that it was all down to environment, to upbringing. In more recent decades, we have become increasingly aware of how tightly and complexly genes and environment are entwined.
- Remembering intentions is more difficult than remembering past events
- It's the lack of cues to remembering that make remembering intentions so difficult
- That's why using physical objects to cue our remembering is so common
- To remember intentions without relying on physical reminders, it's best to concentrate on working out an event or time that will trigger your remembering. Set your mind to remember the link between the trigger and the intention, not the intention on its own.
Planning memory contains your plans and goals (such as, “I must pick up the dry-cleaning today”; “I intend to finish this project within three months”). Forgetting an appointment or a promise is one of the memory problems people get most upset about.
- Memory is not a "thing". You cannot simply "improve your memory", you can improve your memory skills in particular areas.
- Different types of information are processed by different types (domains) of memory.
- Different domains process information in different ways, and therefore require different strategies.
- Understanding the various domains of memory will help you match memory strategies appropriately to different memory tasks.
"I'm terrible at remembering names"
"I'm great with names, but I'm hopeless at remembering what I've read."
"I always remember what people tell me about themselves, but I'm always forgetting birthdays and anniversaries."
There is no such thing as a poor memory!
There will be memory domains that you are less skilled at dealing with.
Information comes in different packages
Think about the different types of information you have stored in your memory:
- Autobiographical memory contains information about yourself, and about personal experiences.
- Emotions, the "facts" that describe you and make you unique, the facts of your life, and the experiences you have had, are all contained in separate domains, and processed differently.
- Your memory for emotions can help you modify your moods.
- Specific events you have experienced are only memorable to the extent that they include details special to that specific occasion.
Autobiographical memory contains the information you have about yourself. It includes several domains:
- Intelligence tends nowadays to be separated into 2 components: fluid intelligence and crystallized intelligence.
- Fluid intelligence refers to general reasoning and problem-solving functions, and is often described as executive function, or working memory capacity.
- Crystallized intelligence refers to cognitive functions associated with knowledge.
- Different IQ tests measure fluid intelligence and crystallized intelligence to varying extents, but the most common disproportionately measures crystallized intelligence.
You may have heard of “g”. It’s the closest we’ve come to that elusive attribute known as “intelligence”, but it is in fact a psychometric construct, that is, we surmise its presence from the way in which scores on various cognitive tests positively correlate.
In other words, we don’t really know what it is (hence the fact it is called “g”, rather than something more intelligible), and in fact, it is wrong to think of it as a thing. What it is, is a manifestation of some property or properties of the brain — and we don’t know what these are.