Saturday, January 3, 2009

Want to Remember Everything You'll Ever Learn? Surrender to This Algorithm

Do you forget stuff? Then this Wired article may be of interest. It's worth reading just for how well it is written. It's about Supermemo, a memory enhancing piece of software.

Supermemo really is an incredible concept. For me, the author of the software, Piotr Wozniak, is a wee bit extreme about using it, but even using it more lightly for a few things here and there could be hugely beneficial.

Here's an excerpt:

SuperMemo is based on the insight that there is an ideal moment to practice what you've learned. Practice too soon and you waste your time. Practice too late and you've forgotten the material and have to relearn it. The right time to practice is just at the moment you're about to forget.

(Tip for reading the article: click the "full page" link, at the bottom of every new page of the article, if you don't want to click the "next" link after reading each page.)

Words I looked up while reading:

misanthrope
episteme
Esperanto
hangdog
visceral

For Mac users, try mindburn, based on the same concept.

1 comment:

Nathan said...

Hi, I've been using Supermemo for about three years, I've got more than 23,000 flashcards. I've been using it to study Chinese, Japanese and other subjects that I'm interested in. I've only had experience with Supermemo, not other flashcard programs (I settled on Supermemo because it's been around longer than other programs, but that's not to say that those programs don't work). I love it.