Click here for the latest version of this system:
It’s been a while since I’ve posted updates about my progress on this system. I’ve continued tweaking things over the past months, such as now using Cupid for 14 (St. Valentine’s Day) and a Leprechaun for 17 (St. Patrick’s Day). They aren’t quite as specific as a named person, but they are very much a part of U.S. culture and easy to remember.
Another change has been to move Muhammad Ali to spot number 74, edging out John Denver (the list didn’t need another singer/guitar player), and putting George Washington at spot number 1, since after all Washington was the 1st U.S. President among many other firsts. This left 76 open, so I put Thomas Jefferson in that slot.
I’ve made some other changes here and there, but as always I keep a running list of candidates at the bottom of the spreadsheet, in case I or anyone else decides one of those is a better fit for their particular system.
Most recently I’ve been working on filling out a 3-digit Josh System, and since this 1 and 2-digit system is not dependent on a particular conversion of numbers to letters, I’m pronouncing all 1, 2 and 3-digit numbers according to the pronunciation rules of Josh’s system. This gives me a short way to speak (or subvocalize) a number like 57 as “leh” instead of “fifty seven”, 1 syllable instead of 4 syllables.
Almost there! Over the past few weeks I’ve added in the 52 playing cards, based on associations for the face cards and based on available numbers for the rest of them, in Bridge suit order: 1s = Clubs, 2s = Diamonds, 8s = Hearts, 9s = Spades.
I finally relented on the 20th century requirement for this system. I was having trouble finding anything suitably iconic for 16 and 76 and Abraham Lincoln and George Washington fit so well there. 15 could be Martin Luther King for his birthday, yet he fits very well at 65 and Julius Caesar’s iconic ‘Ides of March’ fits nicely at 15. 17 is a tough number too but it’s Ben Franklin’s birthday. I didn’t want to use too many old-time characters for the aforementioned reason of there being no recorded audio or video of their actual person. Yet a few like these are still so iconic in our present day that there are some very satisfactory portrayals of them in modern films.
Again, any constructive feedback on this welcome. Thanks.
Hey folks I’d really appreciate if some of you super-intelligent mnemonists reviewed my system for accuracy and logic. I’m getting ready to call it finished soon but some outside input could really help.
Some of you would be much more cultured than me on movies, video games or history, so if you see a number match that would make more sense or an action or object that would be more fitting I’ll be glad for your input!
I’d like your input! I’ve made lots of changes to this system and I think it’s getting closer to completion. But some more eyes on this list should hopefully avoid the “Duh I wish I’d thought of that before!” syndrome later down the road.
Again, this system is intended to be as intuitive as possible for the new learner who has no prior knowledge of memory systems. No number-letter conversion systems need to be learned in advance, most of the people/characters will already be recognizable (all are famous), and there should be logical reasoning for every number association.
All of these people/characters lived in the 20th century, which means there is usually video footage of them, but I relaxed this latter requirement to include such icons as Houdini and the Wright Brothers.
So if you think there’s a more logical person assignment to a number, or a better action or object, I’ll appreciate your feedback! Thanks
I’m starting over. Over a year ago I created a 00-99 PAO memory system mostly based on the Dominic number-letter conversion. It’s been a good system, but now I want to make a better one.
The goal I have in mind is a PAO memory system for numbers (which could also double as a system for playing cards) that is a complete, ready-to-use package for new learners.
I see great potential in teachers using such a system in the classroom to help students remember important dates and numbers. But whether it’s students in a classroom or a new memory hobbyist, time is precious, and I believe a new learner’s time could be much better spent in skipping the system-build phase and jumping directly to memorizing and using the system itself.
So I’m saying enough with the Major System versus Dominic system arguments, let’s make a system that doesn’t use either–which yes has been done by others–but in this case will only be composed of famous, iconic, or otherwise outstanding characters who lived in the 20th century. Thus the new user will either already have some mental association to that character, or will benefit by learning about such an iconic character.
Characters can be assigned to numbers based on a number that they or their action/object are associated with (e.g. Michael Jordan Jersey #23, George Orwell’s book “1984”) or important days and years (e.g. Martin Luther King’s birthday January 15, Franklin D. Roosevelt 32nd President elected in 1932).
To make the system appropriate for all ages, I’m omitting any characters that are highly controversial/polarizing (e.g. Adolf Hitler) and any content that would be rated ‘mature’.
Now, why only go as far back as the 20th century? Video. When there’s video footage of a character, you can see their mannerisms and you can hear their voice. George Washington and Alexander the Great are very famous, but no one knows for sure how they rode their horse or gave a speech. I was surprised to find real video footage of people like Thomas Edison and Henry Ford. […]
I’ve tried to include a wide variety of characters who were iconic or ‘best’ in their field, and more female characters when there was opportunity to do so, though the gender gap is still going to be considerable.
Finally, I put “U.S. Edition” in the thread title because I am creating this system from the perspective of someone born and raised in the United States. So for our friends in other countries, this list may not be so “ready-to-use”, but maybe parts of it will still be useful. […]