X-Message-Number: 11090
Date: Wed, 13 Jan 1999 07:19:09 -0800
From: "Joseph J. Strout" <>
Subject: preserving identity over time

In Message 11081, Raphael T. Haftka <> writes:

>Now, I hope to live for many more years, and then be frozen and
>resurrected. However, based on my past experience, I expect that by that
>time I would have forgotten 90 percent of my present memories. Certainly,
>now at age 55, I remember only about 10% of what I remembered when I was
>15. For example, I have forgotten the names and faces of 95% of the
>children that went with me to grade school...
>So I hope that somebody has some good ideas on how we should go about
>protecting ourselves from our tendency to make our present identity evanesce.

I think this is a very interesting point.  I'm only 27, and already I feel
the loss of certain memories -- even important ones, e.g., details of my
honeymoon 4.5 years ago.  I regret it when these memories slip away.

The best remedy, I suspect, is a daily journal.  While I have not developed
the discipline to consistently keep such a journal myself, I have several
friends who do, and I think it serves them very well.  Describe events,
thoughts, and feelings which are important to you that day.  Decades from
now, you can browse these writings, and they'll trigger and reinforce your
memories of those events.    Not a very high-tech solution, I know, but
it's much better than nothing.

Also better than nothing would be email archives.  If you're like me, you
generate (and receive) volumes of email every month.  The mail you write is
especially important, because it contains your own thoughts, attitudes,
etc.  Save all your outgoing mail and postings; make backups, and update
them as storage media change.  This too will provide triggers for memory in
future years, and at the very least provide a concrete link between your
future-self and your past-self.

Best regards,
-- Joe

|    Joseph J. Strout           developer: MacOS, Unix, 3D, AI     |
|                 http://www.strout.net              |

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