October 19, 2009

Sensory Memory

An example of sensory memory from my experience is when I was in high school. In the photography class, there are many steps you have to do developing the film. The most crucial part is the first step -- getting the film out without burning the film. In order to do that, I would have to go to the "dark" (total black) room to take the roll of film out, cut a part of the film and put the film inside the canister. To be able to perform this, I had to remember where things are visually and by sense of touch before I close the door to start the process. It was like being a blind person. I was able to see absolutely nothing, but what helped was the sensory memory -- the visual things that were imprinted in my head helped keep a vivid memory to locate where things are and get the visual image of what I was touching.

Short-Term vs. Long-Term Memory

An example of a short-term memory in my experience is trying to deal with phone numbers. My friend would tell me her phone number when I didn't have my phone and paper with me, so I had to remember by memory. I had to say it over and over to really get it in my head, but being distracted from other things while walking home, bumping into another friend of mine and started talking -- it was impossible to recall back that number. By the time I get home there would be no trace of memory to get that phone number back that I have been trying to remember in my head. Compare to long-term memory, I would remember a person's phone number when I see them and hang out with them all the time because I would have to talk to them many times on the phone to the point that I would remember the phone number.

October 5, 2009

Knowledge In The Head & In The World

1. Norman gives four reasons that precise behavior can emerge from imprecise knowledge:

a) Information is in the world.
b) Great precision is not required.
c) Natural constraints are present.
d) Cultural constraints are present.

These are some of the things I have observed:

With these examples, we can say that the information in the world is so immense like these coins. Almost all the countries around the world use money in a form of paper and coins -- now many of these coins have their similarities. If you take a look at Canadian coins and U.S. coins, the pennies/ dimes/ nickles are similar in color and size that sometimes we mistakenly use the wrong kind in those particular countries - (Information is in the world). Although, what we can differentiate from those coins are the visible information engraved on the coin, such as the "person's" image, quotes or year. Not very many people pay attention to these information as they may not find them to be important, but they still are able to recognize which coin is which - (Great precision is not required). It would be very difficult if each of us had to remember the person's name in each of the coins and bills with the same color. Imagine if that was the only way we use money -- by remembering the person or image engraved or drawn on the money. There could be chaos.

(Natural and cultural constraints are present). These Legos were made to be stacked. We can see that the constraints are already visible in the blocks, and they could only be stacked in the size and shapes they come in. And with the idea of how to stack or build a particular thing out of these Legos would lie in the information the world has to offer and knowledge within a human memory.

Almost 85% of the world have computers and are up to date with technology. The keyboard was created out of information and cultural constraints. It sure wasn't designed to be natural, in terms of mapping and design, but it is something that human could learn and get used to. The information and knowledge that is learned then can be applied to many things, such as cell phones, laptops, and others.

2. “Many people organize their lives in the world, creating a pile here, a pile there, each indicating some activity to be done, some event in progress” (Norman, 58)

With this statement, the way I could compare it to my daily life is the routine in which I go through each day. People get used to their own routines everyday that sometimes when they miss that routine, they may feel there is something that they haven't done -- then they will find that missing piece to complete it. My usual routine is wake up in the morning, shower, take my dog for a walk, go back home, wash my dog's feet & feed her, get my lunch, homework or spare-time fun, dinner, brush my teeth, sleep. I follow this routine everyday. There are times that I may add things or change things, but the usual routine will always have to be permanent or I will look for that missing piece.

Another example is I'm usually an organized and neat person. I would organize things to prevent clutter, but when projects come there will always be mess -- then I try to find time to re-organize and clean up, but it just ends up being more cluttered. I would have to dedicate my time to re-organize. Keeping this in mind helps to motivate me to do it -- I would always have it in my mind until the task is finished.