So my "Word of the Year" for 2011 is Cryptomnesia. This is one of the most fascinating things I've read about. Wikipedia:
Cryptomnesia occurs when a forgotten memory returns without it being recognised as such by the subject, who believes it is something new and original. It is a memory bias whereby a person may falsely recall generating a thought, an idea, a song, or a joke, not deliberately engaging in plagiarism but rather experiencing a memory as if it were a new inspiration.
There was a group of guys I played Dungeons and Dragons with when I was around 13-16 years old. One had a drow (dark elf) fighter, and he started a guild that he called "The Order of the Ebon Hand."
Later on, the guy running the game finds out there's a Magic: The Gathering card called... Order of the Ebon Hand.
Anyway, the guy with the guild, he swore up and down he'd come up with the name originally and never seen the card before. What a crazy coincidence, he says.
Later on, he finds some of his old MTG cards and... he owns Order of the Ebon Hand.
Cryptomnesia, baby. It's a crazy thing.
There were some examples of this in the book "The Invisible Gorilla." In one story, a guy who had a very detailed memory about Patrick Stewart eating at the same Legal Seafood restaurant as him... the only problem?
Wasn't his memory.
He tells the story about Patrick Stewart a few times, but then he winds up telling it to the guy who was actually there with Patrick Stewart. Embarrassment ensues.
Interesting concept. Apparently it's quite common. Our memories have all kinds of leaks and holes and faults in them - learning the Cryptomnesia was kind of a landmark moment for me.
Memory is such an incredible tool we have... But also it turns out it's used by marketeers and advertisers in a creepy way:
Apparently, ads can cause us to think the images are part of our own memories.
I'll definitely be happy to write another guest post about it just to let others read it. I'll send you something within the next week.
I was thinking about another topic I could add to my blog and memory is actually very fascinating, so it's something to ponder.
Cheers for bringing the topic up.
It's true. I took a memory class and the leading theory as to why we forget things (like the guy owning that certain card) is that there's interference with the encoding in the brain, so it's interesting in that sense.
Sometimes I don't even whom I sent my blog to and whatnot because of this effect. I ask people, "Did I even send you the link to my blog before?"
I. This post outlines Patrick McKenzie - a brilliant technologist and entrepreneur - how he's done such amazing things and learned so much, and why he's getting drastically underpaid and how it's his own fault. This post will be most valuable for technologists who underestimate themselves and undervalue themselves.
II. Hacker News is the best tech community on the internet, and patio11 - Patrick McKenzie - is the best contributor there. I don't even think that's controversial, I think it would be near universally agreed by the HN crowd that Patrick has made as many or more important contributions as anyone.
If you're from Hacker News, you know Patrick already. But for my readers that don't know him, let me give you a quick overview.
III. Patrick is a multi-faceted genius, and I don't throw the word genius around casually.
Patrick McKenzie is many things - he's an expatriate to Japan, he's a talented coder, tester, metrics/split-testing/analytics user, a great writer, extremely modest and helpful. He can recruit people, evaluate talent, and manage people well. He understands ROI very well and is good at purchasing advertising. He's good at customer service. Outsourcing. Automation. Coding. Ecommerce.
For some arbitrary reason, I enjoy thinking of my favorites. Whether it be musicians, sports teams, or really anything else, I have this urge to occasionally "categorize" myself (despite the fact that I detest labels and believe we should stray away from them). That being said, I always wondered who my favorite superhero was.
Now I never really grew up with superheroes. I wasn't an avid comic book reader like your stereotypical nerd (any Big Bang Theory fans?). Really, my only experience with superheroes are the few mainstream movies I've watched recently. This blog post is an effort to dive into this realm I've never ventured into.
For time's sake, I'm only going to look into a few of these individuals. This selection is mainly based on popularity because I don't really want to look closely into obscure superheroes (who the hell is Plastic Man?).
My choices were Batman, Superman, Spider-Man, Iron Man, Wolverine, Hulk, and Thor. All are pretty well-known, but I tried to incorporate both icons and a few darkhorse candidates. I do realize I don't have any women choices, but that's because there are no recent well-known movies about female superheroes.