Digital dependence ‘eroding human memory’
7 October 2015, Nirapad News: An over-reliance on using computers and search engines is weakening people’s memories.
A study says, reports the BBC.
It showed many people use computers instead of memorizing information.
Many adults who could still recall their phone numbers from childhood could not remember their current work number or numbers of family members.
Maria Wimber from the University of Birmingham said the trend of looking up information ‘prevents the build-up of long-term memories’.
The study, examining the memory habits of 6,000 adults in the UK, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg, found more than a third would turn first to computers to recall information.
The UK had the highest level, with more than half ‘searching online for the answer first’.
But the survey suggests relying on a computer in this way has a long-term impact on the development of memories, because such push-button information can often be immediately forgotten.
‘Our brain appears to strengthen a memory each time we recall it, and at the same time forget irrelevant memories that are distracting us,’ said Dr Wimber.