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Intelligent Memory: Improve the Memory that Makes You Smarter Hardcover – September 15, 2003


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Viking Adult; First Edition edition (September 15, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0670032409
  • ISBN-13: 978-0670032402
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6.1 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,433,539 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Gordon (Memory: Remembering and Forgetting in Everyday Life), who holds an endowed chair at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine and is the director of the Memory Clinic, presents his concept of intelligent memory. Differing from ordinary memory because it involves more than simple recall, intelligent memory refers to the process by which the brain makes connections between pieces of information. These connections are used to solve problems, generate creative ideas and provide insight. Essentially unconscious, intelligent memory works with lightning speed. With freelance writer Berger, Gordon explains in accessible prose how to strengthen this memory by pursuing a series of mental exercises. Gordon believes that in order to navigate the complexities of the modern world, a skilled intelligent memory is essential. The exercises for the reader focus on the three defined aspects of intelligent memory: paying better attention, expanding conscious (or scratchpad) memory and learning to store more memories. For example, storing memories can be enhanced by relating new information to something that is already known. If someone is told that a snake with yellow stripes is dangerous, it will be easier to remember if the color yellow is mentally linked to a yellow traffic signal that symbolizes a warning. Although many of the exercises are challenging and fun to try, only the most motivated readers will persevere through all of them.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.

About the Author

Barry Gordon, M.D., Ph.D., is professor of neurology and cognitive science, director of the Memory Clinic, and holder of an endowed chair to study the treatment of brain disorders at Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions. One of the world's leading experts in the study and treatment of memory and language disorders, he is the author of Memory: Remembering and Forgetting in Everyday Life. Lisa Berger is a professional writer and the author of nine popular books.

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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

32 of 33 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 22, 2003
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Any reader wondering about how our minds process and retain information must read this book. Although the reading lines on the cover present the book as an "improve your memory book" , it is in fact, very much more than simply a "how-to" book. A quick look at the table of contents and the many, many subheads in the various chapters only give a hint at the meaty information contained therein. The book is written in a clear, concise style that moves briskly along from subject to subject. There are a number of facinating quizes that illustrate the various aspects of the subject.
Intelligent Memory is a window into how a functioning mind "connects the dots" of thought. The spectre of Alzheimer's is a very real fear for most people and as we age and can't find our car keys or the name of our neighbor of many years, knowledge about this subject is timely and necessary. Another aspect of the information that is quite riveting are the sections on creativity and the mind. Dr. Gordon and Ms. Berger have used their best creative efforts to produce a very readable and important book.
I thoughly enjoyed this book and found its contents absolutely facinating. I recommend it to anyone curious about how their own mind and those of others really works and wants a good read in the bargin.
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41 of 45 people found the following review helpful By Catharine Gilson on November 6, 2003
Format: Hardcover
Unlinke many memory books that offer simplistic exercises to sharpen rote memory, Intelligent Memory goes to the nub of how the brain uses the information retrieval processes to create thought.
I found this book to be a real comfort. As my car keys vanish more frequently and names get harder to fathom, I realize that my ability to see patterns is sharpened. I never before understood how this is a function of memory and how that ability could be enhanced.
The puzzles in the book are great fun and used to make deeper points. All in all I found the book to be fascinating as well as a terrific read.
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23 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Susan Gorn on June 12, 2004
Format: Hardcover
I am 50-year-old woman with more than my fair share of trying to remember where I put my keys. Reading Dr. Gordon's book made me appreciate that I can use my IQ-type intelligence and 5 decades worth of living and learning to do what my working memory doesn't do so well anymore. The book also showed me how the stupid things I sometimes do are really the result of unconscious memory, self-defeatingly bad thought processes I use over and over again. The book addresses that challenge as well, telling us how to use conscious mental effort to wipe out these memories. Over all, I have been immensely helped by his suggestions about how stop worrying about my "memory for keys" and focus instead on improving my memory for productive thought. And, I thought the anecdotes and exercises were a lot of fun.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful By D. J. Buckingham on November 9, 2004
Format: Hardcover
Having done cognitive psychology at university - I have an appreciation for how well Barry has done in communicating some very complicated processes and made them accessable in a practical applied form.

I think the fact that the book is simple and so well written may make some people think that the content is obvious. I especially enjoyed the chapters on attention, storing more memories, problem solving and creativity.

The ideas of how to experts in a field develop their skill was really helpful.

Thanks Barry, good book!
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15 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Joanne Omang on October 23, 2003
Format: Hardcover
If you've ever worried you were losing your memory, or perhaps your mind, this is the book for you. It talks about the kind of memory that's really important, which is not so much where you put your car keys as (for example) what keys are for, and the fact you can use a key to open a box as well as open a door. Some great tests of this kind of memory, which is key to creativity and to effective coping with the real world. A really fine and useful book for everybody.
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