How much memory space does my BRAIN potentially have???

Can we determine how much information a human being is physically capable of recalling??? Is there any way to determine (theoretically, if not experimentally) whether different human beings have different capacities for storing memories?

I remember a thread a while back where someone counted (or estimated) the total amount of neural connections in the brain and calculated that we are able to store roughly 1000 years worth of memories. How the hell did he/she do that - and does any calculation such as this have any real basis or determine anything useful?

Also, if we are working on a time basis, how does one account for different levels of information? For example, in my 50 years of life I may have to learn a hell of a lot more than you do in your 50 years, so therefore where does that put us in terms of memory capacity?

And why do some people (notably people like cardcounters, but more specifically people who can memorise great passages+volumes of books with one quick read and can recite them for years afterwards) have better recall than others?

I’m worried about having to learn a lot of new things about the business world as well as scientific information that will be useful to me. I suppose I’m wondering whether remembering these will be a problem, and the limits of my memory. I wonder whether this will be a problem in my (overestimated) life span of 200 years.

Brains don’t work like computers, or store things in anything like files.

most likely they store things as fireing weights between neurons. which more or less make the amount of stuff stored be totally non-intuitive and can range wildly.

Considering how little we know about how memories are stored, I seriously doubt it.

The interesting thing is that people seem to use their brains differently. “Smart” people tend to use much less of their brains when performing standardized tests than “dumb” people, which indicates not that they have stored more information, but that they have stored it and are accessing it more efficiently. It’s quite possible that you’ve learned a lot more than someone else, but you also have quite a bit more storage left than they do. The brain doesn’t work like a computer, so talking about the brain running out of storage space doesn’t really equate.

Card counting is mostly a learned skill. There are other nifty memorization tricks, such as being able to remember 100 people’s first and last names when only introduced to them once at a party, that also all appear to be learned skills. There may be a genetic component that makes these skills easier to learn in some people, but it’s my understanding that people aren’t born with these abilities.

Note that my only qualifications in this field are that I used to design equipment used by a nuerobiologist, so a lot of what I know comes from leaving through his textbooks and magazines and lunch time discussions.

Could you elaborate on that, or point me to a good link on how information is stored in the brain? Thank you,