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After 30 years away from the game. Trying to figure which cobwebs to clear. I watched a science channel special on the brain and memory functions. In it they used the example of Polgar training his daughter with the use of 'chunk memory' using the limiting factor of memory (usually 7) and storing that as one 'chunk'. I've perused all the websites pertaining to her and her sisters and can't find any reference to this technique.....any help??
I guess I'm lacking in communication skills. I know that with renewed exposure to a chess regimen, that my old rating of 2100+ may become a possibility again. My desire is to expand on the mind's ability to look at problems from several different perspectives. Polgar's suggestion is that by taking the maximum feasible memory units (6-7) and 'chunk'ing them into one memory unit. Then chunk 6 or 7 chunks into another. A person could look at a position and recall through the use of this method. Which openings could of been used to get there. How the transition can be obtained and what would work effectively in the end game. You wouldn't have to recall countless openings, just the process of looking where you are as opposed to where you want to be. It is the application of this method I'm looking for,since it is obviously working for his daughters, and wanted to know if anyone had come across any info on it?? The regimen of study and application I'm already aware of. Just another attempt of overcoming my mental limitations. A new way of training the brain.
David Shenk, The Immortal Game will give you a sense of the psychological theories regarding memory and chess that takes you farther than a show on the science channel. A clearer sense of theories of memory as they aply to chess skill will give you a stronger base for evaluating study techniques.
I would avoid M. de la Maza's work as it does more to produce burnout than genuine chess skill--it worked for the author: he no longer plays chess.
I believe I know what your looking for and understand how and why it would help you achieve your full potential.A good book called The memory palace of Matteo Ricci.A jesuit missionary in the Ming dynasty who tried to exported christianity to the orient.Interesting book about the man himself but does contain a section about memory techniques and spacial mnemonics.It might all be too late but it is still an interesting book.
If you are looking for memory techniques search for "method of loci" or memory mnemonics. As for chunking, there is tons of information regarding these techniques. I would eliminate chess and try to apply the information you can find easily.
They call that 'Mind Mapping' I had some links saved here... ummm... somewhere.
I also have some related research called 'spatial thinking' which is really the same thing.
A shot in the dark here:
Miller, G.A. (1956), The Magical Number Seven, Plus or Minus Two: Some Limits on our Capacity for Processing Information. Psychological Review, 63, 81-97. Chase, W.G.; & Simon, H.A. (1973). Perception in chess. Cognitive Psychology, 4, 55-81. Gobet, F.; de Voogt, A.J.; & Retschitzki, J. (2004). Moves in mind: The psychology of board games. Hove, UK: Psychology Press. Gobet, F.; Lane, P.C.R.; Croker, S.; Cheng, P.C.H.; Jones, G.; Oliver, I.; & Pine, J.M. (2001). Chunking mechanisms in human learning. Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 5, 236-243
I find that if you drink enough, all your thinking gets chunked pretty well.
Did anything decisive come of this old thread? I'm interested in hearing more about the method of loci and how I can employ it in my study. I'm just 1600-something USCF.
Mnemonics (method if loci, etc) are not going to help you improve as a chess player. Those memory techniques are fun, you can impress your friends, but I have not found them very useful for improving at much of anything. In chess it's being able to recognize patterns (tactics, etc) and understanding positions so that you can carry out the right plan.
Mnemonics are a very empty solution. You can memorize a lot of data, and then recall it, but you have absolutely no understanding of what you recall. It's like a parrot. It can repeat things, but it doesn't understand the things it repeats.
The rule "7 +/- 2" is well known. Some folks okay with 9, some find 5 as much as they can handle. From my work, it comes into play in how IT systems are designed.
There was an artiucale on thought process in, I think, Scientific American not too long ago that referenced chess players and thinking in "chunks". It was not the 7 +/- 2, it was nmore abount how GMs just "see" the board differently.
You would be better off doing dual N-back everyday than mnemonics.
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