Some startling findings on memory capacity were reported by the authors of a recent MIT study.
[Aude] Oliva and her students showed subjects nearly 3,000 images, one at a time, for three seconds each. In tests the same day, they were shown pairs of images and asked to select the exact image they had seen earlier.
Subjects were tested with three types of pairings: two totally different objects; an object and a different example of the same type of object (e.g. two different remote controls); and an object and a slightly altered version (e.g. a cup that is either full or half-full).
Against all expectations, subjects' recall rates on the three types of memory tests were 92 percent, 88 percent and 87 percent, respectively. "To give just one example, this means that after having seen thousands of objects, subjects didn't just remember which cabinet they had seen, but also that the cabinet door was slightly open," [Timothy] Brady said.
The work was published in PNAS.
HT to CogLangLab who offers some comments on the study.