The History of Memory Techniques Leading to Mind Maps by Tony Buzan

Since human beings first walked planet Earth, memory has been one of the main concerns and interests. If early homo sapiens forgot, it was not only a matter of not remembering, it was often a matter of no longer living: if you could not remember which snakes were poisonous; which fruit was nutritious; where you had hidden your implements and weapons; where swamps, quick-sands and chasms were located; and where your secret supplies of food were, you did not get many more opportunities to try to remember anything!

Looking at memory from this basic and survival point of view, we quickly realise that memory is not just a matter of recalling shopping lists and information for exams – it is literally a matter of life and death. It is for this reason that all cultures throughout history have devoted large amounts of their time and energy to making sure that there ‘memory systems’ were both excellent and improving.

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