Memory as a sport? Give me a break. I didn’t expect to like Joshua Foer’s book about becoming a mental athlete, vying for a championship based on the ability to cram and recall huge amounts of useless information.
But Moonwalking with Einstein is a great read and Foer does far more than just chart his journey into the nerdy world of memory athletes.
Along the way he provides an engaging explanation of how neuroscientists currently understand memory. He shows us how the extreme accomplishments of memory champions build on ancient and (conceptually) simple techniques of linking image, place and memory. He takes us through the history of moving memory out of our heads and into technology…and he’s not just talking about SD cards and smart phones here: As Foer points out, writing and books are also forms of external memory storage.
If the question of memory intrigues you in any way, find yourself a copy of this book.