The Information Compression Method
This method is used to encode short text extracts into visual images: anecdotes, encyclopedia data, or separate text paragraphs.
The results of experiments with memorizing textual information (F. Bartlett, “The Mind at Work and Play”) prove that textual information is sort of erased after a period of time (as if compressed). In essence, a person can initially reproduce a text more or less precisely and completely; then, after a few weeks, his memory retains only a couple of sentences from each page of textual data.
GMS® does not require precise memorization of textual information. It should be, at this point, obvious that a person reproduces textual data by the pictures he remembers. When you read a book, reproductive imagination automatically translates words into visual images and creates CONNECTIONS between them. Thanks to this process, you memorize something like separate frames from a “viewed movie” which the text causes to appear in your imagination. The process of recollecting a story is similar to retelling a story by pictures.
You already know that connections created between visual images only once are quickly deconstructed. That is why, even an hour after reading a text, only a part of the created connections remains in your imagination. Consequently, your brain will generate only a portion of the visual images – and, since there are fewer pictures left, the story you tell decreases in size as well.
Since textual information is “compressed” anyway (deconstructed over time), GMS® teaches to concentrate your effort not on precise literal memorization of a text, but on forming a skill for excellent memorization of the pictures which reflect the principal thoughts of the text and, then, forming a skill for generating speech statements based on those remembered pictures.
Encoding a text into images and memorizing this sequence are not the hardest parts. It is much more difficult to learn to build your speech on the basis of visual images. In order to form this skill, special exercises are provided in the “Textual Information” course. Very often, a student is unable to answer a question not because he does not know the information, but because of his inability to translate thoughts/images into a verbal statement.
The main problem, when studying foreign languages is the same: absence of speech automation.
The information compression method is very simple. Let’s say, you need to memorize the following text extract:
Leanne Cox, a student of the California University, set a new world record. She crossed the Magellan strait, 3.3 kilometers wide, in 1 hour 2 minutes, in spite of the cold water.
The first operation you must perform is distinguishing the association base. You need to learn how to quickly “catch” the main idea of a text fragment. Imagine that you are an editor-in-chief of a magazine and your task is to read large amounts of short texts and give them each a TITLE (headings). This article deserves the tile of “Record Set on Water.”
However, we cannot memorize word combinations automatically. Imagine that there are hundreds of such names. How will you memorize their sequence? A person can only create connections between visual images.
That is the reason why the next mental operation is to mark the association base with VISUAL-SUPPORT. Visual-support is an image-word that is easy to memorize using different associative methods.
In this case, the visual-support “medal” is suitable to represent the “record set on water” association base.
Thus, a textual extract is “compressed” into a compact and informative image; then, such images can be memorized in very large amounts and in the necessary order.
The “Information compression method” scheme is as follows:
Textual extract – sense-support (name) – visual-support (image)
Consequently, if a text contains 20 paragraphs, each paragraph must be marked with a visual image; then one must memorize the sequence of these images. Later, when recalling the sequence of images, you will retell the text without breaking the sequence.
Texts can contain large numbers of precise data, a text from a history book, for example. Textual information may also contain no precise data (anecdotes or science-fiction texts for children).
Text information memorization will be examined more closely in the “Textual Information” course. For now, we will just tell you that GMS® makes it possible to qualitatively memorize any textual data – from anecdotes and reports to complicated educational texts (which is what it was originally invented for). Mnemonics is the main component of rhetoric, an art of oral presentations.
You are now acquainted with the basic methods of transforming information message elements into visual images. The described methods can be used to encode almost any data into images. The next memorization stage in GMS® is FIXATION OF CONNECTION BETWEEN VISUAL IMAGES IN THE BRAIN, visual images that represent the elements of memorized information.