Chunking in working memory via content-free labels
Publication in refereed journal


摘要A recent study found that visual working memory performance was enhanced when pairs of colors were predictably paired, and it was interpreted as a form of “memory compression” which implies that more colors could be stored online in a more efficient format. Here we propose an alternative hypothesis that does not entail any increase in the number of individuated representations stored online. Instead, familiar ensembles of items may be attached to a content-free label (e.g., remembering red-white-blue as “American flag”) that can be used to retrieve the constituents of a chunk when they are needed to guide a response. If accessing “compressed” memories requires an additional retrieval process, then access to compressed items should be slower than for uncompressed items. Indeed, Experiments 1 (visual) and 2 (verbal) showed that response times were substantially longer in patterned (i.e., compressed) than in control conditions. In Experiments 3 and 4, regularity-based advantages were eliminated with brief (1000 or 875 ms) response deadlines, in line with our hypothesis that accessing compressed memories requires a slow retrieval process. In sum, while statistical regularities can enable access to larger amounts of information, this information may not be available “online” in the same way as singleton items.
著者Liqiang Huang, Edward Awh
期刊名稱Scientific Reports

上次更新時間 2021-22-02 於 00:50