Sunday, April 2, 2017

Extreme Memory Challenge

Let's break down the name of this test, shall we?
Extreme - This test certainly did test the capacity of my memory to the highest degree. In fact, I felt quite helpless while taking it.
Memory - This is pretty self-explanatory. You remember things with your memories and your memory that you remember in your memory, if that makes sense. (I know it doesn't.)
Challenge - To call this test a simple "Challenge" would be an understatement. Then again, my results (contrary to my experience with remembering names) stated that "9293 of the 14359 people that have so far completed this task have performed worse than you did." With simple math that means that 5066 people performed better than me and that I scored in the 64.7 percentile. And wow, those statistics sound pretty poor out loud.

I first noticed  this lil' test when I saw an advertisement for the "extreme memory challenge." I've always considered my memory to be impeccable. I seemingly never forget names, even after first greetings. So even when I'm not friends with someone or I don't know them personally, I usually know both their first and last names, which I can tell you makes for some interesting interactions when we finally are introduced. And because I remember names so well, I started to take this test with the expectation that it would be quite easy.

However, after reading the general guidelines, I soon realized that this test was called the "Extreme Memory Challenge" for good reason. The first few minutes of the test consist of the presentation of a face and a name which you are apparently supposed to memorize and somehow associate within ten seconds. And sure, it might be easy to pick up a few names and faces within that limited timeframe, but after I saw around twenty names and faces I just looked at the pictures without any recognition or retention in my short term memory.

And understandably, to make the test a lot more difficult, the pictures were in black and white. That's right, so if the people in the pictures did have any distinguishing features (blue eyes, distinct hair color, etc.), remembering such features wouldn't help you when taking the test since they were never displayed to begin with.

Here's a sampling of profiles from the actual challenge. For the test, the pictures and names that were individually presented in the beginning of the test were reorganized into grids with a name and a face you were (supposed) to pair together. Apparently I wasn't that great at it since I only got sixty percent correct.
So this test certainly was interesting, and in my case, (hopefully) inaccurate since I pride myself on my memory. But if these test results don't lie, don't bet on me remembering your name.