The article also gave some hints for remembering. (article in New Scientist, February, 2008)
1. PAY ATTENTION. Make a conscious effort to think about where you leave your keys when you come in. You could even try saying aloud ‘I am putting my keys on the table’.
2. BE ORGANISED. Memories are like pieces of mail, it takes very little effort to open your mail and throw the contents all over your desk, but when you need to retrieve one, it won’t be easy. If you file related pieces of mail together, it’s a snap.
So when you need to remember something, try to link it to an existing strong memory. Mnemonics can also help file concepts together. (excrement = ex-husband, that works)
3. GET EMOTIONAL. Emotional arousal enhances memories - even when the memories themselves aren’t emotional. Test subjects shown neutral pictures of houses and faces followed by emotionally charged pictures remembered the neutral pictures better when they were followed by emotionally arousing pictures.
4. REVIEW. Retrieving items from memory makes them more likely to be remembered in future and keeps them from being bumped out of the way by new memories. So rehearse the name of the person you just met within 30 seconds, and once or twice more with increasing time between rehearsals.
My number one: I am shutting the door on my foot, I am dragging in two bags of groceries, I am putting on the light/air-conditioner/space heater, I am desperate for a pee, I have just shut the door with the keys still in the lock.
My number two: file all mail on the floor, it provides insulation and it’s sure to be there for at least three months. To illustrate, ex had received a wedding invite that didn’t include me. I watched him search through briefcase and files until I bent down and picked it up off the floor where I’d pitched it.
My number three: I tried this and it didn’t work. Naked guy, house, naked guy, face, naked guy, house, naked guy, face. Couldn’t recall the house or face but I certainly got emotional over the naked guy I was using.
My number four: I’m good with faces unless they’re accompanied by a naked guy but nothing will help me remember names unless I’m using Prof. Umbridge’s pen to write it down. In the article Michael Anderson says that the reason most people don’t have good memories for names is that they’re lazy. Rubbish, try being introduced to someone at a party while juggling a drink, handbag, food and noticing the introduced has his fly/flies (another thing I can't remember) undone.