Thanks for watching and reviewing my work. I need other analyst types to help confirm and critique.
I’ve never seen any information on bottom-up vs. top-down methods of constructing palaces. I have seen a mention of having image keys already situated in the background vs. placing your own image keys there, but without noting how important it is for long-term retention and structuring. I’ll give you a brief summary here to get you started if you are planning to use it or just want to know the differences as it relates to my progression in using memory palaces.
In the first few system iterations I tried, in the top-down construction style, where I took a pre-built palace filled with number-peg objects and populated it with stories of Bible verse encoded images, I found it created many bizarre and uncomfortable images, which tended to be unstable over time and created a need for too much review. Another side effect was that, I would say, the objects themselves were very unfriendly with each other without any type of association to their roommates.
The bottom-up construction style resulted from wanting to structure the Bible chapters better into smaller chunks for following the psychological rule of chunking, also known as Miller’s law. I had used common pegs for chapter numbers to help traverse the book in order. Instead, I revisited all the 261 chapters of the New Testament to see if it was feasable to encode them into unique images by way of the book palace context. (Matthew is a Math University building and Matthew 12 is now a dean’s office using the Major system)
I had to extend my list of Major system peg words as much as possible for options to select from that fit the theme of the book. My chart has somewhere between 10 and 30 peg words to select from. That exercise in peg word discovery gave me a mental traversal method for reviewing all the options but after a while I found that the familiarity with the selected peg was getting better.
Then I noticed that my peg words were able to be connected to a background that suggested itself. This is the bottom-up construction method. Some peg words were swapped for better relevancy based on that background. Matthew 12, the dean’s office, is in the administrative area of the math building. Matthew 13 is a team meeting in that area that I participate in.
The backgrounds are easy to traverse with a story as I move through the student commons area, the admin area, the classroom, a buiness partnership area, and the exterior of the building. Even the backgrounds, once detailed out in my imagination suggested improvements to my book image. For the smaller books in the NT, the book was the background.
I hope this shows you why my preference is for the bottom-up method that comes with more analysis, in my case, about three years. Without the time necessary for preparing the palace after the familiarization stage because you’ve chosen a value of competition in your strategy phase, you have to skip over that and emphasize the steps of the preparation phase using a top-down palace.
If I can help with any other details, let me know and your suggestions will always be welcomed.
Edit June '21 - Bottom-up construction I now refer to as a creating and learning purpose or dynamic system for knowledge since it occurs first and does not have a definite end or goal. This is a short-term recall or competition system. Top-down construction is now a using and teaching purpose or a repeatable system (concrete or realized are the software design words) where a system overlays known information for long-term recall.