The Internet may Influence Memory Skills

The Internet is a well known tool used to access knowledge quickly and easily. But did you know that using it could affect the way our brain stores information?
A team of scientists led by Betsy Sparrow, assistant professor in psychology at Columbia, analyzed the impact of the huge accessibility of data from the Internet on memory skills. One of the experiments consisted in typing one sentence in a computer and testing if the typists remembered it. The results showed that people were more likely to forget what they wrote if they knew that the data was saved. Furthermore, easy access to data may also affect what we precisely remember. Indeed, in the experiment, subjects memorized better the way to find the information rather than its exact nature.

This study is one of the first that explores the effect of the Internet on memory; on the other hand it seems that the brain would adapt to new technologies and would utilize them to memorize only the more valuable information.


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