Was it Verbatim or not?
Why was it so useful?
Was it Verbatim or not?
I suppose my physics textbook in high school.
Around the time I was heavily experimenting with mnemonics I thought, why not just memorise my textbook. It took me around 2 days, a total of about 13 hours(300 pages). 10 hours on the first day and a bit of finishing touches on the 2nd. The reason why this was the most useful book I have memorised is arguably because it was my first full scale application of memory techniques and I learned a lot by doing this even not including the information itself.
As much as it seemed verbatim I would say It was more conceptual. I would be able to recall the page without using my memory palace and sort of explain what each bit of text that I could not ‘read off my memory’ actually meant as a whole.
When we had a review session in class of the teacher saying ‘write everything you know on a piece of paper’ I was really the only one still writing after 12 minutes and after 90 minutes. I definitely ran out of paper.
The fact that I did this in a days worth of time really stood out to me because it took me anywhere from 5 to 8 hours to recall all the information I had remembered. Recalling was really a massive drag with this quantity. Just recalling all the information once or twice takes away your entire day and then there is the headaches. I even had those dreams where I just kept looping my palace.
As for the actual information, I suppose it did help me, if I learn from textbooks now I definitely pick other methods for academic content because the overload for output isn’t exactly efficient. It’s definitely nice being able to recall information without cues.
Really cool! How did you do it? Would you like to share a page as an example?
I made my images as I went along and made my palaces both at the same time and before placing the objects in bulk.
For physics I started off with a desert, I still remember it ironically. The desert was the most inefficient part of it but I had a desert to a facility where 3-4 items were placed on it. It started with a weighing scale to remind me of the fact that I was talking about mass numbers and neutrons bouncing off the scale to indicate to me that isotopes had different mass numbers because they had different neutron numbers. The images went along like this for the desert and shifted to more specific and slightly more efficient kinds of images.
In the facility as soon as I entered I had kind of two devices that my imagination would consider ‘particle separators’, they basically showed me a set of scenes to describe the weak and strong nuclear force, electrostatic forces and gravitation. Particularly getting closer and further away and how the properties of the forces changed in this regard. Then I would see a femto line as I called it then, really just a pink line that made me think of femtometer, as the separators got closer which demonstrated the range of the strong force to me. My book at the time had a curve for this so the shape of the electricity I was visualizing made me instantly remember the curve.
I could go on and on but that more or less sums up how I was doing it. It didn’t have particular drawbacks besides overwriting my memory. I would say that doing this completely made me a ‘new’ student because my memory felt as though it was overwritten. I used to have tendencies in my explanations which completely vanished in exchange for newer tendencies. Not that this was a problem in this case. For chemistry it was more of an issue when we were building 3d models and oxygen in my memory palace was white, not red like in those models I would always mix them up with hydrogen which were white in those models but pink in my palace.
If you are wondering a bit about the length, the room with the separators as I thought of them was essentially 1 paragraph in total. I at-least spent 1-5 locations(depends on how many points) for a paragraph each which had at-least 3 objects in total (separator, electricity, particles, charges,femtoline). I found that the text stuck very well too so I had a lot of ‘verbal’ descriptions for images rather than encoding all the verbal descriptions. I would say the rate I was going at particularly towards the end was around 1/3rd the speed I would read the paragraph at.
Generally understanding things made them shorter but I definitely found it much quicker to understand things when trying to represent them with visuals.
I should probably mention, all things said it is actually fun to do this.