Andrew Watt has an interesting blog post called Wanderings in the Labyrinth. In it he talks about using Google Sketch to create a visual image of your memory palace.
Google Sketch is now Trimble SketchUp, in case you go looking for it.
Andrew’s post is important because it reminds us of the value of having a clear vision of our memory palaces. I know that I tend to think very conceptually and sometimes fall into the trap of just knowing a room exists in a certain apartment I once lived in without actually taking the time to visualize it first. I always use an Excel file for storing the different locations I use, but this only compounds the conceptual nature of the memory exercise. When I work this way, I essentially rob my mind of the rich visual dimension truly lasting memorization thrives on.
Floor plans work wonders. This is a Berlin apartment I used to live in:
Yes, it was that big!
By drawing and numbering the rooms, I now have at least some visual connection with the lay of the land as I create my journey and create a conceptual version of it in an Excel file.
Here’s the most important part about drawing out a floor plan for the purposes of memorization:
I created this mind map with my hand. Something about going through the motions of drawing with my hand increases the connection I have with the remembered place incredibly.
My question is: would there be any value in making a computer rendered 3-D image, or would that just conceptualize things further for me?
I also wonder about sketching each individual room to make each station in the memory palace more vivid. I’m not a great artist, but it’s worth a try.
Do you draw your memory palaces? Let me know by leaving a comment below.