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Brains of elderly slow because they know so much
Telegragh (UK) ^ | 1-20-2014 | Sarah Knapton

Posted on 01/20/2014 2:51:32 PM PST by Sir Napsalot

The brains of older people only appear to slow down because they have so much information to compute, much like a full-up hard drive, scientists believe.

Older people do not decline mentally with age, it just takes them longer to recall facts because they have more information in their brains, scientists believe.

Much like a computer struggles as the hard drive gets full up, so to (sic) do humans take longer to access information, it has been suggested.

Researchers say this slowing down it is not the same as cognitive decline.

“The human brain works slower in old age,” said Dr. Michael Ramscar, “but only because we have stored more information over time

“The brains of older people do not get weak. On the contrary, they simply know more.”

A team at Tübingen University in Germany programmed a computer to read a certain amount each day and learn new words and commands.

When the researchers let a computer “read” only so much, its performance on cognitive tests resembled that of a young adult.

But if the same computer was exposed to the experiences we might encounter over a lifetime – with reading simulated over decades – its performance now looked like that of an older adult.

Often it was slower, but not because its processing capacity had declined. Rather, increased “experience” had caused the computer’s database to grow, giving it more data to process – which takes time.

(Excerpt) Read more at telegraph.co.uk ...


TOPICS: Health/Medicine; Science
KEYWORDS: aging; brain; deepsleep; dimentia; elderly; elderlymemory; elderlysleep; knowledge; memory; michaelramscar; sarahknapton; seniors
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1 posted on 01/20/2014 2:51:32 PM PST by Sir Napsalot
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To: Sir Napsalot

I could use a complete defrag and a larger L1 cache.


2 posted on 01/20/2014 2:53:50 PM PST by Paladin2
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To: Sir Napsalot

This explains a lot!!! What day is this :)


3 posted on 01/20/2014 2:54:12 PM PST by upchuck (Stop this abuse now! Get behind Convention of States: http://bit.ly/1ak1Iz9)
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To: Sir Napsalot

We Napsalot.


4 posted on 01/20/2014 2:54:15 PM PST by no-to-illegals (Scrutinize our government and Secure the Blessing of Freedom and Justice)
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To: Sir Napsalot

I know my hard drive is getting full and I’m a little short on RAM


5 posted on 01/20/2014 2:55:17 PM PST by woodenickel
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To: Sir Napsalot

That explains it!!


6 posted on 01/20/2014 2:56:12 PM PST by 2ndDivisionVet (Jealousy is when you count someone else's blessings instead of your own.)
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To: Sir Napsalot

How do I get rid of spam and cookies?


7 posted on 01/20/2014 2:56:58 PM PST by mountainlion (Live well for those that did not make it back.)
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To: Sir Napsalot
We came to this conclusion a while back. We're in the 65-70 age group. I still work and do some serious mathematics every day. So does my best bud.

We were talking on the phone and tried to recall something trivial....who played Captain Kirk...we BOTH said....darn...I know who you mean. And of course we could picture him.

We dropped it and went on to our next subject...all of a sudden, it was like pulling a card out of an index file....and I could see the name William.

Then my bud chimed in.....Shatner.

And that's what happens when you're old.

I believe we actually shove trivia into a trivia file when we get older and THAT'S WHY it takes so long to recover...it's in the brain's junk drawer.

8 posted on 01/20/2014 2:59:10 PM PST by Sacajaweau
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To: Sir Napsalot

“Older people do not decline mentally with age”

Yes, most do


9 posted on 01/20/2014 2:59:11 PM PST by nuconvert ( Khomeini promised change too // Hail, Chairman O)
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To: mountainlion

Amen ... Amen ... mountainlion .... Your tagline says more than I shall ever!!!


10 posted on 01/20/2014 2:59:25 PM PST by no-to-illegals (Scrutinize our government and Secure the Blessing of Freedom and Justice)
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To: woodenickel

My brain is acting like Kelly Bundy’s! For every new fact, I lose an old fact. It’s full to the top!


11 posted on 01/20/2014 2:59:33 PM PST by Dr. Bogus Pachysandra ( Ya can't pick up a turd by the clean end!)
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To: Sir Napsalot

That’s what I tell my kids.


12 posted on 01/20/2014 3:00:07 PM PST by Paine in the Neck (Socialism consumes everything)
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To: Sir Napsalot
This may explain a couple of things why as I have gotten older my mind "seems" to not be quite as sharp....cache is full...

Doesn't explain my short term memory...though...

Where are my keys?
What time do you get off work again ?
What's for dinner again ?

13 posted on 01/20/2014 3:00:19 PM PST by Popman ("Resistance to Tyrants is Obedience to God" - Thomas Jefferson)
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To: Sir Napsalot

I can remember where I put my keys... in 1975.


14 posted on 01/20/2014 3:01:13 PM PST by Tijeras_Slim
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To: nuconvert

okay ... I’m going to ask why and then think but will not know why. Could you turn this around? Got any think pills?


15 posted on 01/20/2014 3:01:27 PM PST by no-to-illegals (Scrutinize our government and Secure the Blessing of Freedom and Justice)
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To: Sir Napsalot

Cute theory and analogy, but I think there are limits to comparing the human brain to a disc-drive. This article has passed those limits.


16 posted on 01/20/2014 3:01:32 PM PST by BfloGuy ( Even the opponents of Socialism are dominated by socialist ideas.)
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To: Sir Napsalot

I knew that.

Also, people in their fifties and sixties are better at their jobs than college grads cause they have more life experience to process scenarios against to come up with the BEST solution. Kids might be faster because their slates are empty and info is kept in certain parts of the brain. As you age, you use more areas of the brain.


17 posted on 01/20/2014 3:02:30 PM PST by huldah1776
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To: huldah1776

Hush ... please, be quiet. Don’t tell our secrets!!!


18 posted on 01/20/2014 3:03:57 PM PST by no-to-illegals (Scrutinize our government and Secure the Blessing of Freedom and Justice)
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To: Paladin2

Every once in a while, it’s good to delete everything in the “TEMP” folder, too.... I do that with whiskey.


19 posted on 01/20/2014 3:04:00 PM PST by Boogieman
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To: Sir Napsalot

I believe this. Storing it away for future recall if I can remember where I store it!


20 posted on 01/20/2014 3:05:32 PM PST by Red_Devil 232 ((VietVet - USMC All Ready On The Right? All Ready On The Left? All Ready On The Firing Line!))
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To: Sir Napsalot

:)


21 posted on 01/20/2014 3:05:35 PM PST by GOP Poet
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To: Sacajaweau

Sherlock Holmes had an encyclopedic memory for things that were of interest to him and his work. But, Watson noted, he was studiously ignorant of many other things that were to him irrelevant. Holmes thought of the mind as a library with only so much capacity, which he wished to reserve for items of meaning.

On a lower level, Kelly of “Married With Children” had limited memory capacity. Her brother Bud noted that when she was full, any additional added fact meant that one would fall out... she’d forget something to compensate. Like “who scored four touchdowns in a Polk High football game.” FIFO.


22 posted on 01/20/2014 3:05:37 PM PST by Pearls Before Swine
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To: Pearls Before Swine
four touchdowns

I surrender!

23 posted on 01/20/2014 3:08:59 PM PST by no-to-illegals (Scrutinize our government and Secure the Blessing of Freedom and Justice)
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To: Sir Napsalot

Ah, so that explains why I can’t...What?


24 posted on 01/20/2014 3:09:13 PM PST by jazusamo ([Obama] A Truly Great Phony -- Thomas Sowell http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/3058949/posts)
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To: Sir Napsalot

That’s been my theory all along.....Our brains aren’t limitless in their memory banks so it’s natural that short term memory starts forgetting things due to limited storage capacity..........


25 posted on 01/20/2014 3:09:33 PM PST by Hot Tabasco (Miss Muffit suffered from arachnophobia.....)
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To: Tijeras_Slim

**I can remember where I put my keys... in 1975.**

But do you know where they are now?


26 posted on 01/20/2014 3:10:03 PM PST by ThomasThomas (I wear gloves when I wash my hands,)
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To: Pearls Before Swine

Overtime? Heck ... why even risk it?


27 posted on 01/20/2014 3:10:10 PM PST by no-to-illegals (Scrutinize our government and Secure the Blessing of Freedom and Justice)
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To: Sir Napsalot
No wonder my head looks like Barry Bonds head after 10 yrs of steroid use.

I gotta delete some stuff tomorrow...

5.56mm

28 posted on 01/20/2014 3:10:33 PM PST by M Kehoe
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To: Sir Napsalot
Who am I? Why am I here?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uKpX-5jQjQ0

 photo Jstockdale_zpse3e41636.jpg

29 posted on 01/20/2014 3:11:41 PM PST by Zeneta
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To: Zeneta

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uKpX-5jQjQ0


30 posted on 01/20/2014 3:12:02 PM PST by Zeneta
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To: zot; SeraphimApprentice; Interesting Times

Will emptying our cache work? Or only our bank account?


31 posted on 01/20/2014 3:12:23 PM PST by GreyFriar (Spearhead - 3rd Armored Division 75-78 & 83-87)
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To: Sir Napsalot; All
I'm not saying that they're wrong, but I'm skeptical about the conclusion of these scientists.

And if by "slow" scientists are referring to memory issues, don't scientists compare their notes?

FR: Study: Elderly Memory Loss Due to Lack of Deep Sleep

32 posted on 01/20/2014 3:12:30 PM PST by Amendment10
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To: Sacajaweau

Information not accessed recently goes into long-term memory rather than short term memory, so yes, takes further digging.

As methods are used like rote memorization, it strengthens the associations in the brain cells (axon and neuron thing) so it’s a physical development.

Exercise your brain with stuff you want to keep fresh.


33 posted on 01/20/2014 3:12:48 PM PST by F15Eagle (1Jn4:15;5:4-5,11-13;Mt27:50-54;Mk15:33-34;Jn3:17-18,6:69,11:25,14:6,20:31;Ro10:8-11;1Tm2:5-6;Ti3:4-7)
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To: ThomasThomas
But do you know where they are now?

Next to my glasses, wherever they are.

34 posted on 01/20/2014 3:14:50 PM PST by Tijeras_Slim
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To: Sir Napsalot

C:>\Delete E:\TV_Commercials\197*.AVI

?!ILLEGAL IOT
CANNOT DELETE E:\TV_Commercials\197*.AVI,
FILE(S) IN USE

C:\>

Looks like I’m out of luck.


35 posted on 01/20/2014 3:15:53 PM PST by Dr. Sivana (“The only thing that can save us is if Kerry wins the Nobel prize and leaves us alone.”-Moshe Yaal)
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To: Sir Napsalot

Sometimes my problem is that I can recite a poem I memorized in the 7th grade, but can’t remember what I had for lunch today.


36 posted on 01/20/2014 3:19:38 PM PST by basil (2ASisters.org)
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To: Sir Napsalot

Amen!
This has been my theory and claim for years.


37 posted on 01/20/2014 3:19:46 PM PST by onyx (Please Support Free Republic - Donate Monthly! If you want on Sarah Palin's Ping List, Let Me know!)
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To: Sir Napsalot

I’ll say this much, my wife’s 93 year old mother lives with us. “Mama’’ is a wonderful woman and her mind is sharp as a tack. She used to be an account with Sears. She balances her own checkbook to the exact penny. She does cross word puzzles and is a Suduku champ. And she knows what night the garbage goes out. I’m fifty=seven freakin’ years old and for the life of me I still don’t know what freakin’ night the bloody garbage goes out.


38 posted on 01/20/2014 3:21:34 PM PST by jmacusa ("Chasing God out of the classroom didn't usher in The Age of Reason''.)
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To: Sir Napsalot

Experience creates a shortcut or workaround for a lot of situations.

I saw a show a while back with older people competing with 20 somethings. One of the tests was a room with 3 light switches connected to 3 light bulbs that were out of sight in another room. They had to figure out which bulb went with which switch without being able to see the bulbs and switches at the same time.

The 20 somethings floundered and the older people nailed it because they did exactly what I would have done. The older people turned on 2 of 3 switches then turned one back off. When they went into the other room they knew that the bulb that was still lit belonged to the switch that was still on. Then they would feel the bulb and know which bulb had recently been on.


39 posted on 01/20/2014 3:25:08 PM PST by cripplecreek (REMEMBER THE RIVER RAISIN!)
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To: Sacajaweau

I think the brain acts like a computer in other ways too.

For example did you ever stand over someone shoulder while they are operating the computer and mouse and YOU can see where to point and click but it takes them along time to find what is so obvious to you

And if you switch places its the same for them watching you..

I think it shows the brain is multi-tasking by time slicings- and when you are only WATCHING you are doing less than the person sitting down trying to operat all 10 fingers and read and write at the same time...


40 posted on 01/20/2014 3:29:43 PM PST by Mr. K (If you like your constitution, you can keep it...Period.)
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To: Paladin2
I could use a complete defrag and a larger L1 cache.

Same here! Some old fart should formulate a "Forgetting Unimportant Data" seminar and start making big money.

41 posted on 01/20/2014 3:30:02 PM PST by Albion Wilde (The less a man knows, the more certain he is that he knows it all.)
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To: jmacusa
I’m fifty=seven freakin’ years old and for the life of me I still don’t know what freakin’ night the bloody garbage goes out.

My trick for remembering to take the trash out in the morning. On my way to bed before garbage day I put an empty milk jug in the hallway leading from my bedroom. When I kick it in the morning I remember.
42 posted on 01/20/2014 3:31:04 PM PST by cripplecreek (REMEMBER THE RIVER RAISIN!)
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To: F15Eagle

F15Eagle is right. Unused information gets stored in long term memory.

However, it’s not that there is “deeper digging”, it’s that when our brain moves something to long term memory is runs a compression algorithm on the data in order to store it more efficiently.
For most people, the algorithm is lossy (kind of like JPEG only completely different), which is why older folks can remember things but the details can get sketchy. There is also the factor of “generational loss”, which happens when information is retrieved and decompressed, and then re-compressed again.
The algorithm resides in the Hypothalgooglemus portion of the brain which is responsible for the search related functions (and also where Google got the name for their search engine).
So it’s not lack of space, it’s the time to decompress the data and the potential compression loss that is the problem.

When short term memory becomes a problem, it’s because there is a error in the block read of the algorithm in the Hypothalgooglemus and it’s searching the archives first.

That’s my story and I’m sticking with it.


43 posted on 01/20/2014 3:31:41 PM PST by Nonsense Unlimited
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To: Sir Napsalot

That’s what I’ve been telling my kids!


44 posted on 01/20/2014 3:32:40 PM PST by EDINVA ( m)
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To: Sir Napsalot

45 posted on 01/20/2014 3:33:04 PM PST by JoeProBono (SOME IMAGES MAY BE DISTURBING VIEWER DISCRETION IS ADVISED;-{)
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To: Pearls Before Swine
I do believe we can also reject information. I refuse to memorize actors and actresses in movies. I recognize them as being an actor.actress...but stick a name to them. Not interested.

I believe my daily grind of mathematics keeps my brain moving...but remember...it's still just manipulating 0-9.

On the other end, I do historical research which is a massive puzzle. Difficult but it's all connected somehow. I follow the people via maps. I know who was the neighbor of whom...the wives and the kids and the stream they fished in. Fun but what a ride.

46 posted on 01/20/2014 3:35:00 PM PST by Sacajaweau
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To: Tijeras_Slim
Don't you love it when you finally figure out that your glasses are on top of your head.

Also...I had my glasses on a chain at one time...so they came on and off.

Then one day the chain broke. No problem...except the next time I took my glasses off....they dropped to the floor...Life is so fun.

47 posted on 01/20/2014 3:38:08 PM PST by Sacajaweau
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To: cripplecreek

I put the toilet seat down. He remembers!!


48 posted on 01/20/2014 3:40:03 PM PST by Sacajaweau
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To: Sacajaweau

Done the top of the head thing.


49 posted on 01/20/2014 3:40:59 PM PST by Tijeras_Slim
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To: mountainlion

50 posted on 01/20/2014 3:41:00 PM PST by JoeProBono (SOME IMAGES MAY BE DISTURBING VIEWER DISCRETION IS ADVISED;-{)
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