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'[OT] Confabulation.. .'
2006\10\09@173650 by Russell McMahon

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This from New Scientist print edition email teaser.
If you don't subscribe this is all you get from this source (Gargoyle
will know) but it's enough to make you think - or to confabulate:


EVERYDAY FAIRYTALES
Many older people gradually develop amnesia about recent happenings
and may make up stories to cover up their embarrassment about the
blanks. Neurologists call it confabulation. It isn't fibbing, as there
is no intent to deceive and people seem to believe what they are
saying. Until fairly recently it was seen simply as a neurological
deficiency - a sign of something gone wrong. But now it has become
apparent that healthy people confabulate too - the implications of
which could be profound - not only for witness testimonies but also
for the way we view the world...more

2006\10\09@203924 by Rich

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Yes, Russell.  I have met a few habitual confabulators.  In fact, I think it
all began in politics and spread to the major media.  I think they teach it
as a required course for journalists.  :-o)


{Original Message removed}

2006\10\10@123803 by Howard Winter

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Russell,

On Tue, 10 Oct 2006 10:36:51 +1300, Russell McMahon wrote:

{Quote hidden}

I've seen people do it - recounting events at which I was present, and embellishing them to the point of lying - but they seemed to believe it
themselves!

It's one reason why I don't read the papers any more - I've seen first-hand how wrong they can get things where there is no reason to make things
up, they just get it wrong.  So when it really does matter...

Cheers,


Howard Winter
St.Albans, England


2006\10\11@020951 by Ruben Jönsson

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> saying. Until fairly recently it was seen simply as a neurological
> deficiency - a sign of something gone wrong. But now it has become
> apparent that healthy people confabulate too - the implications of
> which could be profound - not only for witness testimonies but also
> for the way we view the world...more
>

Not being any neurologist or brain specialist, this corresponds fairly well
with how I have concluded that the (conscious) memory in the brain works - Only
fragments of an event that we have experienced is saved in memory, much like
key frames in an AVI file. Whenever we want to play back the episode the brain
picks out the key frames and fills in the gaps. The event is more or less
reconstructed based on the key frames and how the brain "thinks" it should be
based on previous experiences. This takes place a couple of layers below the
consciousness so we think that everything happened exactly as we "see" it. The
more we reconstruct the event in our minds, the more real it seems and possibly
more key frames are "saved" based not only on the real event but also on the
"made up" reconstruction.

This is not a fact, just my view on it...

/Ruben

==============================
Ruben Jönsson
AB Liros Electronic
Box 9124, 200 39 Malmö, Sweden
TEL INT +46 40142078
FAX INT +46 40947388
spam_OUTrubenTakeThisOuTspampp.sbbs.se
==============================

2006\10\11@024937 by Russell McMahon

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> saying. Until fairly recently it was seen simply as a neurological
> deficiency - a sign of something gone wrong. But now it has become
> apparent that healthy people confabulate too - the implications of
> which could be profound - not only for witness testimonies but also
> for the way we view the world...more


Not being any neurologist or brain specialist, this corresponds fairly
well

>  ... The more we reconstruct the event in our minds, the more real
> it seems and possibly
more key frames are "saved" based not only on the real event but also
on the
"made up" reconstruction.

> This is not a fact, just my view on it...

This generally corresponds to what's accepted by many on the subject.
Also not "a fact" but what experts seem to believe :-).

Seems to work when utilised as  a tool.
An alibi becomes much more unshakeable when the story told is wlaked
through mentally and veiwed in the mind as if real, with supporting
details added. Harder to trap a person in a lie when this has been
done. Still has to match reality at the interfaces though :-).

"Recovered memories" were much used a decade ot more ago as the great
new way to find out what had happened in a person's past. In mant\y
cases it was found that the "facts" were being manufactured by the
interview and 'discpvery' process. Hesienburgs psychological
unbceryainty principal :-).

The "art" of 'Psychocybernetics', developed by a plastic surgeon who
noted that some of his scarred patients recovered theier self inage
after surgery while others didn't, builds on this foundation. Seems a
very useful and practical concept. His book worth reading. He is very
practicla despite the fancy title to the process.


       Russell






2006\10\11@074350 by Rolf

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In a somewhat bizarre "serendipity", I was watching Law&Order last night
(SVU). The "Shrink" (Dr. George Huang played by B.D. Wong) diagnoses
Munch's uncle with some strange depression-related dementia. When
comparing it to alzheimer's he said that alzheimer's patients forget
things, and then confabulate their stories to fill the missing gaps. The
depression related dementia patients don't forget things, they just get
buried, and can be recovered with anti-depressants....

got no idea about the medical/psycological side of things, I just found
it interesting that the term has appeared twice this week, in very
unrelated areas.

http://www.google.com/search?q=define%3A+confabulate

Rolf

Russell McMahon wrote:
{Quote hidden}

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