Phenomenal memory good or bad?

Excuse me? But as far as I know, the top memory athletes are all using the same techniques Buzan and O’Brien taught. Ben Pridmore, 3x world champion, used one of Buzan’s books to learn the memory techniques.

Do know which chapter it is in? I have the book here next to me, but I haven’t read it yet. Looks good from the table of contents.

Some people are using the same techniques to beat the old records. People are memorizing decks of cards in 30 seconds with simple 1-card systems.

No. Ben Pridmore uses his own system. He does NOT use Buzan Nor O’Brien. Also O’Brien does NOT use, has NEVER used O’Brien . You don’t seem to ‘get it’. Experts often throw out “falsities that work to an extent” to prevent competition. Its a classic strategy as any warrior (competitor modernly) knows.

Here’s the rule: do NOT do what gurus say. Do what gurus “Do”.

In this case: forget any bizarre images.

I didn’t know that it is even possible to memorise a deck with “1 card PER 1 Loci” in 30 seconds.

Can you give me evidence of this (and preferably one that can be substantiated). I very very strongly doubt this - very very very strongly doubt it.

I’ve always wondered whether Dominic O’Brien does use his own system. I’ve been openly wondering about that in the forum and blog for years, but after seeing Wang Feng’s performance, and those of some other MAs (see below), I realized it is possible to get top scores in speed events with simple systems. He may have a more complex system, but not necessarily.

I suspect that some people use bizarre images and some don’t. The very nature of mnemonic images leads to bizarre scenes. Maybe people could comment about their own personal experience below.

Sure… Boris Konrad does it with a competition score of 30.65 seconds.

Nightwalker: 29.96 seconds (maybe he can chime in about his system). He made extremely rapid progress with that system.

You don’t know people can memorize 30 second decks with a one card system? And a one card system is one image per card, not one card per location. Wang Feng used a one card system and memorized a deck in 24 seconds. In fact, a user on this forum (Nightwalker) has done it in 29 seconds in competition. You want video evidence? Skip to 2:45 on this clip: Please don’t make such claims without properly researching first.

What you said about Ben Pridmore just proves my point. He learned the BASIC technique from Buzan’s book and modified it to make his own system. All he needed was the basics and then he was able to build off of them.

I think that Boris and Nightwalker use 1 image per location too. Maybe they will comment with more information.

I know Boris uses one card per location, and Nightwalker told me that he switched to 2/locus after a while.

SO… I didnt catch this particular contradiction in my initial reading of the pMemory material… I was just looking at an illustration in there where it gives an example of a static association. A picture is superimposed into another.

To convey the idea they apparently used some software that had 3D objects in it to make this image… and literally put one inside the other, like both trying to occupy the same space…visually overlapping.

…uhm…Beryl…that is, in fact, a bizzarre image.

It also goes on to describe using EXAGGERATED sizes with your objects…Magnifying parts of an object to LARGE size and MEDIUM sizes.

It does give other pictures where to show what an association looks like in your head…to attach a lawn mower to a specific part of a milk carton…you mentally zoom into a close-up of…say the spout of a milk carton and picture a tiny lawn mower sitting there…so the image they have is basically a closeup of that part of the carton and then they cut and pasted a picture of a little lawn mower there…The instructions basically say to just sit there and imagine the two objects together like that…oh…and it says be vivid in your detail of the objects ( uhm…doesnt that take extra time too?)

It talks alot about 6 seconds as optimal time to make mental connections…so not sure how we got to talking about world class competition type speeds in this debate.

I don’t know if I’m sold on this supposed static imagery theory…when I use an exaggerated action in my associations…It affords me to not have to be that detailed about everything else if I don’t need to in a given situation. Action is powerful.

This forum is very good. Now we’re getting very productive discussion and Josh you are very good.

  1. I learn/realize suddenly that any mnemonic is likely to be bizarre by its very nature. (I still hold onto the point that one doesn’t have to try to make bizarre images as that slows one down).

  2. I am VERY curious whether it is really possible to memorise a deck of cards with “1 image= 1 card = 1 location” (i.e. whereas O’Brian is 2 cards per location = 1 image, but that is not what I am talking about above)

Josh or anyone here… [slight change of topic triggered by a post above]… I am curious…

What software have you seen out there (whether 3D or pMemory or any, even if you have ideas of using non-Memory software but modifying it for Mnemonic purposes) - that is good or great to use to memorise pictures (and be able to do that rapidly ) ?

Why would it not be possible?
Take 52 loci, assign every card in the deck to one of these loci using your favorite coding technique. Done.

I am a graphic designer, and have a small print shop, so for me it was the availability of graphics packs which contain thousands of objects and images. There are both paid and free versions of such things. I use these to make flash cards…doing some now for my daughter. (She is the whole reason I got back into Mnemory stuff)

On the quick, you could also do a Yahoo search for “random objects” and it brings up graphics, many of which are bunches of objects all on one page…you can slide through page after page of those.

One pet project of mine is to try to master a way to use a random object type of page and super-impose mental images onto the actual images right in front of me, on the fly, while I listen to a lecture or educational show, etc. This is something I came up with back in 1986 in high school…but I never really finished figuring it out, till recently ( Ive been away from the Mnemory stuff for long time lol)

I still find myself needing to use bizarre imagery or actions to make the association stronger, or I forget some associations…but I’m finding that, as with anything else you have to create and adhere to little personal mental rules along the way, to help make things efficient. One thing that really helps keep up with what is being said is to just use 1 or two basic types of action in my imagery…like Piercing, or Exploding…then I don’t have to think about what I’m going to create at every picture, plus it allows me to use other kinds of action, if my subject matter calls for an “action” to be integral to what needs to be remembered…I simply know that Piercing and Exploding are my own mental glue mechanisms, and are separate things.

That’s basically how it works for me. Naturally combining my images often creates bizarre scenes, but I don’t spend a lot of time on it. If I miss something during recall then I figure out a way to make the missed image more unusual.

Example: 4459 is Artur Rubinstein playing the piano (44) with a giant moth (59 = Alope Sphinx) inside that is getting hit by the piano hammers. If the 44 comes first, the second image is inside of the piano. If the 44 comes second, the first image is either playing the piano or on top of Rubinstein. If the 59 comes second in another sequence, it might have the first image riding the giant moth. E.g., 6659 is a rababa player (66) flying on the giant moth (59). These are all bizarre images, but their arrangement follows certain basic rules*, so it doesn’t take much effort to create them.

(* Adopted from the Ben System: “I ‘see’ them arranged from left to right, or top to bottom, and interacting in various ways according to rules I made up as I went along, depending on which objects come together in what order.”)

This is from You Can Have an Amazing Memory by Dominic O’Brien:

Over the years, I’ve had many people come to me to say they’re afraid that these sorts of techniques will be lost on them because they simply don’t believe they have the creativity they need to make the images stick. However, it’s really important to remember that the things you imagine should be within the realms of possibility; or at least hold some form of logic – so while they’re creative, they aren’t too fantastical. They might be a bit bizarre or unconventional, but in theory perfectly plausible or possible. Think back to the pen and soup scenario in Chapter 6. I admit it’s unlikely that anyone would ever use a pen to stir a bowl of soup; or that you might use the soup as ink for the pen. But it’s not completely impossible. Similarly, do you remember Beethoven on a mobile phone? Alright, Beethoven would not have had a mobile, but if he had had one, he’d probably have used it to call his agent. There is always some logic to the scenario, and yes, you need to be creative, but not superhumanly so.

I also want to reassure you by making a confession: now that memorizing by association is second nature to me, my mental images aren’t at all refined in every detail. Sometimes they are sketches with only the right colour and shapes; sometimes they are cartoon-like. I certainly don’t produce perfect visual representations. I conjure up ideas and scenarios – images that are just enough to make the connection in my head. However, for now, if you’re just starting out, I recommend that you fill in your images as much as possible: only once you’re really comfortable and confident in the practice should you start short-cutting.

According to Boris, it’s possible. :slight_smile:

Anki – you can go as quickly or slowly as you would like, and it has spaced repetition built-in.

wang feng did a lot of courses of memory (he told in interview)
if he did the phenomenal memory and got what i call as phenomenal score?

is it possible to learn in 1 hour per day only?

i want to train 15 min to 1:30 per day. most of days in week. i will make from 3 to 5 posts of my progress. and what i am doing.

I am considering buying Anki [its $25 ! !!! on the iPhone]… can you tell me more …

  1. Can I put snapshots of locations on it with my iPhone ?

  2. can I “copy paste” large list of words in a foreign language in such a way that instantly each flashcard will be a different word (e.g. English-German) , using Excel to “order the words” first on a computer ?

  3. How exactly do YOU use Anki and for what ?

  4. How does Anki flash cards COMPARE to Mindmapping (e.g. buzan’s iMindmap program)? How to use BOTH together so that long term memory is enhanced ?

You may want to post in this thread:

Mind maps plus Anki:

I’ve only used the Android and desktop versions of the software. You can add pictures and it will show them with spaced repetition intervals. There may be a way to show them in order too.

Here is a sample card – there is a front and a back. My images are in the back, but you could put them on the front if you want. You tell the program how well you know the image and it sets a good interval for the next showing. The best way to get an idea about how it works is to download the free desktop version.


To all people “talking” about pmemory without the slightest idea what it is:

I wonder if any of you actually read anything from ?

pmemory vs others:
(list of OLD testimonials of people comparing pmemory with other products they have tried. “old” because we stopped posting testimonials on the website years ago. Now students post them in the forum if they want to)
NOTICE: that they compare and talk about it from the experience! Not like most of you here.

The whole pmemory technology explained in the free ebook (163 pages).

(most of the people here, talking about it, do not know even basics of pmemory, yet they present their “arguments” like they do. Again, results guys. You can memorize some random digits and make stuff up. Wow. How about you Just read the book first and get anywhere in terms of your practical ability? Then at least we would be having relevant, reasonable conversation about it, based on something REAL.

and to be honest with all of you here. I have read most of your posts in this thread and it’s just sooo boring to read. Some kind of old stuff that no one cares about. Do you really want to memorize deck of cards as a final goal and final achievement? Wow, what an achievement! :slight_smile: How do you plan to use it in real life? and what is this bashing pmemory about? if you want to say something, please be specific, relevant and direct. No need to make BS accusations and “theories” that worth nothing. Can any of you memorize Entire Books?

if you are skeptical and believe it is a scam - go here:

If you want to see how final result looks like go here:
(people demonstrating books they have memorized (video testimonials))

and again. Everything less than ability to memorize Entire Books - has no value in real life. If you can memorize Whole Books, now we are talking about something truly significant. Something that you can truly use in real life and in anything you do, NOT only because of the skill itself, but also because of the Brain shape that is required to do something like this.

We, at don’t care about mnemonics. It is old stuff. ancient, actually. Cards memorization is a party trick that impresses no one, and absolutely useless in real life. Same goes for everything else you mentioned here. But ability to memorize ANY type of information, including Entire Books and having Brain Muscles/Shape that allows you to do that, so you can learn what ever you need when you need it - that’s what pmemory is about. Real life application. Real life abilities. Not to mention that even this is just basics of pmemory level 1.

Pmemory is about exploring human/brain potential, that is based on practical results. Not some theories, but REAL, tangible results that can be applied in real life. Ability to install knowledge directly into your behavior for example. Forget about cards memorization. it’s a joke. You can learn how to do it after few first lessons of pmemory.

most of you still got lost in the idea of isolated techniques. It is like talking about isolated workout exercises, like pushups or sit-ups. Pmemory is about FINAL SHAPE that allows you to do incredible things with your body, like back flips, etc. You can do your pushups till the rest of your life with your “LOCI” or what ever else - but you will remain overweight. It is very easy to get lost in the illusion of progress, like you are getting somewhere. You can waste years of your life on that and still get nowhere. Or you can just complete the pmemory training and get it over with. Pmemory is just the beginning anyway. Next levels is a way to go and that’s the future. join the fun and evolution, or stay stuck in the old stuff that leads nowhere. There is soo much advanced breakthroughs going on right now in terms of learning, brain, memory, etc. (besides pmemory) That’s where the fun is - incorporating all of that. At least this is what we do inside of and inside of our community.

No matter what you have to say or what you “think” - you can find answers at (when you talk about it). Read it, study it, try it - THEN talk about it from the experience. At least then it would worth something.

Is there anyone here that bought and completed Pmemory course? Is it better than O’Brien, and other popular sources?

Pmemory site makes too much extraordinary claims, without providing any citations, and their testimonials aren’t trustworthy. :smiley:

I have passed the half of the course. But it was in Russian (actually the GMS is just a translation of the book of another Russian author – Vladimir Kozarenko). The rest part of the course was dedicated to memorizing texts and passwords (as I remember). But, by the middle of the course I have got everything I want – I passed him for the sake of learning English.
I like this system and use it in learning English. But it seems that in English segment this course has very repellent impression due to marketing policy of the sellers.
Is it better than O’Brien, and other popular sources – Actually, I don’t know, because I didn’t use them and cannot make a comparison. But take into account that the system is based on the theory that you have to connect static images rather that create stories and use dynamics. It also has journey or loci method as the base for memorizing useful information, but items there is mentally divided onto several parts. For example, if you take a guitar, you can place another images onto the neck, body, tailpiece, pickup, strings and so on. It saves the base images when using journey method.
So, you can find a lot of free information on the point. Ah, you can try English You Mind (android program) which is created based on the Kozarenko’s system. This will show you the basics. And if you understand Russian you can also try Mnemocon (it contains the first 12 lessons from the system. I think they will be the same as the first 12 GMS lessons)
Still, I am sure that any system is good enough to such a degree to which extent you have mastered it.