Information Model of Memory

The present model does not deal with physiological processes of memory as they are likely to organize elementary records. Therewith information about structure, significance or content of some information blocks is not required. The chemistry of the paper this work was printed on, as well as the size and form of the paper sheet, the machinery used for printing and the paint itself does not affect the content of this work. Information content does not depend on media and we can record it on a floppy disk or distribute it over the Internet and etc. Important is only information itself and participants of information exchange. Thus the paper only covers information structure and content of memory. Information is divided into objects and this point is of great importance. According to some theories the storage of information in memory cannot be localized i.e. there is no neuron which destination is to memorize the cake that you ate at Christmas, 1988. Moreover lots of neurons are responsible for such information and it is “spread” over the number of neurons in accordance with some scheme. In fact there is no contradiction between the way information is kept and its logical structure. Here is an example. Holographic image of the word “Memory” cannot be localized on a hologram pattern (physical medium). There is no special part of the pattern that presents letter “M” for example. The information is spread over the medium. Nevertheless it is possible to single out this letter as part of image and its place is quite certain. Thus physiological organization of memory can be omitted while studying its information structure. That is the reason why physiological processes are eliminated in this model. Memory penetrates psyche and is involved almost in all psyche processes that employ its memorizing quality and memorizing quality is peculiar only to memory. This model regards memory as universal information quality of psyche, the only quality which properties are memorizing and reproduction of information.

Deduction of Memory Information Qualities and Structures

Let us imagine a gift sample of a bat (baseball equipment) that looks like a bat (flitter-mouse) when it is hanging down and sleeping. The outlook is the same: the same color and the same form. This is a gift sample and you have never used it before.

Now let us refer to your memory. All written about the baseball bat was aimed at forming some certain (may be nonexistent) object “baseball bat” that possesses some qualities. Thus if you can imagine such strange object as “baseball bat that looks like a bat (flitter-mouse)” it is already in your memory. If you state that you cannot imagine it nonetheless it is still in your memory. If you make statements about this object you exploit it anyway. Moreover any opinion, denial, ignorance and etc. i.e. comprehension of what was talked about in the first paragraph means that you use this object. Hereafter we can state that such object as “baseball bat that looks like a bat (flitter-mouse)” has formed in your memory. Now recollect your Christmas dinner and the most delicious dish you had then and etc. And now again imagine that strange gift sample of a bat. You remember the object that looks like a bat (flitter-mouse) but actually is a baseball bat. If we determined objects according to association of similarity this object would had never been identified as some baseball bat. Consequently, when recollecting we do specify objects according to earlier classification and not association. Of course, at initial perception we do classify object partially according to association of similarity and even further it helps to add some extra classification but after first presentation, as the example shows, for the object which is already ranged in a class we actually use some earlier recorded information. And in this case we use it before applying to association of similarity. Thus objects in our memory have been already ranged in some class and as the data on classification has been memorized there is some record in memory about the class to which object belongs i.e. there is a record in memory that certain bat belongs to the class “baseball bat”. At the same time every class is object in memory and can be correlated with other classes. That means that the class “baseball bat” can be associated with such class as “sport equipment”. We can memorize such correlation in the future and associate the object with another class. Hereafter information about correlation between two objects is called connection. Thus we have stated that there are at least two records in memory: they are objects and connections between them.

Let’s consider connection between objects more carefully. We have covered the process of classification. But suppose we take into consideration the composition of a bat (the composition means parts of object i.e. the composition of baseball bat is a knob, a handle and a barrel) the result is the same as memorized is the structure (i.e. if the bat is broken and has not a knob this fact is recorded). In this case there are also objects and connections between them. Besides classification and composition one can regard such notions as “usage”, “location” and etc. The process and the results are the same i.e. connections between objects that subject determines are recorded in memory.

The place of information storage in memory is worth a more detailed investigation. As it has been found out connections are kept in memory but the question is where they are stored: whether connection is part of object or is it located outside object. If connection is placed outside object there should be a record somewhere pointing that this connection belongs to this object. Thus there should be a new connection between the object and the connections correlated with this object. So one more question appears: “where is that new connection?” If it is outside object everything repeats and a new connection appears. Thus object includes at least one connection if it has connections at all. This connection either indicates the beginning of a chain or is the connection with other objects. The length of chain has no limits but endless chains of new qualities do not add new information. The most convenient is connection that points at a set of connections. It presents a very simple scheme organizing one connection with many of them. Set of connections builds up object as well. Obviously, all connections of one object with others are stored in object itself. Hereafter connection that is kept in object and reflects its relations with other objects is called LINK. Besides links objects hold other data. Hereafter we call it “elementary records”. In most cases it is sensations connected with one of modalities or feelings. For example, the object “war” can be linked with the object “fear” and possess such elementary record as some feeling in body that can be called “fear”. These are two different things. The link to the object “fear” explains while the elementary record “fear” makes feel it.

To bring the matter to a conclusion we have to consider the type (classification) of link, i.e. whether link belongs to the type “object composition’ or “usage of the object” and etc. Let’s remember the gift baseball bat. Suppose we have one more baseball bat. Unlike ordinary one this bat is composed of a ball attached to a glass tube and a cylinder plastic pot. One can imagine even more curious thing. Let’s ask a question “what is this gift baseball bat comprised of?” The possible answer is: “of a ball, a glass tube and a plastic pot”. And if we take some ordinary baseball bat its composition is the following: a knob, a handle and a barrel. Obviously, we are talking about the composition of baseball bats in both cases. If asked to list the components one will not list the means of usage but list the parts of the baseball bat. The composition of different baseball bats may have no association of similarity i.e. we do not simply list similar sets. Thus object includes both links to the composition of this object and indication that this link points at the composition and not the storage location. There is a connection between the object “composition” and this link. This connection classifies the link as being a link to the object type “composition”. Actually, in object there is a connection for each link and this connection specifies (classifies) each link. Earlier we have defined such connection as “link”. Thus links are stored in pairs in every object. One of the links points at the type of object and the second one indicates the certain composition or content of object. Hereafter such pair of links is called memory pointer. Thus memory includes both certain notion about object, which presented in form of the second link, and ideal notion, which is presented by classifying link.

We would like to attract your attention to the fact that there can be several answers to the question “what is the bat composed of?” They can be:

  1. a knob, a handle and a barrel

  2. a knob, a barrel and a handle.

Different subjects can give answers 1 or 2 with different frequency and even within one subject frequency can change under different time conditions and etc. Hereafter we suppose that every memory pointer has its statistical weight. The possibility that this memory pointer will be used first is higher if this figure is higher as well. Statistical weight can differ depending on actions and conditions of subject. Actually, it indicates the “significance” of memory pointer.

Consequently, memory comprises two basic elements: elementary records and links. Paired links form memory pointers. The 1st link determines the type of memory pointer; the second one indicates its certain content. Elementary records and memory pointers are formed into objects.

Here are the exact definitions of the terms mentioned above.

DEF Link is element of memory. Its content is unique feature of object that enables simple recognition of this object and accesses to it.

DEF Elementary record is element of memory. Its content can be described as some entire indivisible feeling or image. Elementary records are those elements that are not links.

DEF Memory pointer is pair of links; the 1st link defines the type of memory pointer and the 2nd one indicates the certain content. Hereafter the 1st link (indicates the type of memory pointer) is called “left” and the 2nd one that refers to some certain content is called “right”.

Historically the term “memory pointer” (“memory pointer” is original version) was introduced into memory psychology by Koriat A., & Lieblich, I. (1977). A study of memory pointers. Acta Psychologica, 41, 151 -164.

DEF Object is set of links and elementary records. The access to them is consistent; there is no passing by links inside object. There is/ was at least one link pointing to the set.

Further analysis requires introduction of 5 more terms:

  1. Local object is object which is pointed at by right link of memory pointer. (This link determines certain content). These objects are directly related with the case itself. They are psychological reflection of some certain object that possesses such qualities as color, taste, smell etc.

Example: there is a sentence “My son has left his bat at home.” As we think about the bat the boy left at home we imagine that black wood baseball bat that is laying on his table now. This certain baseball bat is LOCAL OBJECT.

  1. Global object is object which is pointed at by left link of memory pointer. This link is responsible for classification of memory pointer, i.e. for its correspondence with some type. Such objects do not related with the case and often serve to classify and correlate other objects. Global object is the essence of a thing.

Example: there is a sentence My son has left his bat at home.” It runs about such object as “baseball bat” and not “bat – ruffling-mouse” and we feel it. In this case the color and the place it is laying makes no difference – it is not important. Thus “baseball bat” is GLOBAL OBJECT.

  1. Notional vocabulary is amount of global objects in memory of a subject. For many objects of notional vocabulary exists a usual name.

  1. Context for object of n-level is information structure that consists of memory pointer at the root object, memory pointers in the root object that refer to objects of the 1st level, memory pointers at objects of the 2nd level – all objects to which refer memory pointers in the objects of the 1st level etc. up to n-level inclusive. Root object is object which context is under the question.

  2. Context of n-level is information structure consisting of a set which elements are contexts of n-level objects. When using this term it is necessary to determine the set of root objects this structure is based on. In this paper the set of root objects for this structure is set of objects in short-term memory of a subject.

It is important that one object can be global in one case or local in other case. The term “object context” presents the scheme of relations between the given object and the inner world of a subject. The inner world in its turn reflects objective reality. This scheme is both information and prognostic one. It prevents you from seeking a chameleon on a tree as you are likely to confuse it with some part of this tree. The term “context” presents the scheme of case the subject involved in as well as all significant inner world correlations. For example if you are looking for a chameleon on a tree you can confuse some benches with it. At the same time you are likely to oversee a mantis if it is not part of your context. Thus the context is part of the world model that subject has built during ontological development. Moreover context is information “sensory receptor” that percepts the world. The information is absorbed through context. Taking into account logical models of cognitive psychology one can found out some similarity of the information model and the frame model of knowledge presentation worked out by Minsky.

Here are examples:

  1. Frame-prototype - global object

  2. frame - local object

  3. data in slots - pointers, elementary records

The differences:

  1. Frame-prototype and frame are different types of objects; according to information model one object can be both local and global.

  2. According to the frame model the type of data in frame is given by frame-prototype. The field of knowledge presentation is limited by verity of frame-prototypes. If the stored types of data are presented abstractly the structure loses its prognostic character and turns into a structure for mere keeping of some data. The information model has no such limits at all. It can present any experience even that has not been defined or predetermined earlier. Even in this case the model preserves its prognostic character. In addition to it the information model is a universal one for keeping all types of information. This is achieved by introduction of such term as link, and specification of object type through left link in memory pointer.

The advantages of the frame model as well as some drawbacks remain valid in the information model. There are some disadvantages:

  1. It is difficult to come to a logical conclusion. Information model is not a productive one. Productive model allows making a logical conclusion by simple enumeration of possibilities. It does not explain the results, the way they have been got. The information model gives the opportunity to make more conscious conclusions. At the same time this process is easier. Due to elimination of the entire enumeration universal character is lost. This model presents the explanation how the result has been got. Unfortunately the issue of consciousness can be hardly presented in some scheme.

  2. Ambiguousness. Actually this is likely to be an advantage, i.e. knowledge is often contradictory. The model requires the choice of noncontradictory context and necessary derivation rules. If the context is contradictory one have to single out contradictory objects and specify them or exclude out of conclusion, for example.

AXIOM 0: Memory is semantic storage. It is divided into cells that are addressed by semantic code.

AXIOM 1: Link to every object is unique and is formed from qualities of object. The more similar qualities of these objects are, the more similar links to objects. The degree of likeliness in qualities can be measured by semantic differential. Semantic code makes the content of link.

Even earlier some researchers, i.e. Artemeva, concluded that objects in memory are identified by semantic code “…the range of researched semantics is rather large at this moment to suggest the existence of a unified semantization mechanism and regard semantic code as primary regulator of interaction with object or at least as primary classifier”. Thus despite being presented in this paper as axiom it can be confirmed in other works. This paper considers semantic code as some “address” of object in memory.

Let us cover one more quality of link. Suppose a link occupies some memory space (hereafter n). Supposing the referred object occupies some memory space (hereafter z).

Lemma: z>n i.e. memory space of link is less than memory space of object. The proof of the lemma is in Appendix 1.

Property: memory space that is occupied by link to object is less than memory space occupied by object at which link points. (If there are objects that consist of only one link, memory space of this object equals memory space of the link. But the reasonability of such objects is a controversial issue).


How recognition works? Schematically it can be presented as following. A subject uses qualities of an unknown object available for perception, and gets “inexact semantic address”. Then follows specification and in case of success there appears insight feeling. Exact memory pointer to the found object is formed. In case of failure there appears a certain classification of the object. It is important that available qualities depend on the current context of a subject e.g., depending on context looking at a sheet of paper one can mark either qualities of the image or qualities of paper itself. Consequently, different objects are going to be recognized. Recognition is possible even without direct object perception. A chain of recollections about situation often presents enough information for recognition.

Let us consider what context of n-level if n->∞ is. This information structure will include all the interconnections of the inner world of a subject that are somehow related with the context – i.e. the whole range of interconnections. And that is the image of objective reality created during ontological development of subject and his cognitive activity. At first the term “image of objective reality” was introduced into philosophy. Some psychologists used this term in their works: e.g., Leontiev A. “To build up an image of objective reality it is necessary to integrate knowledge that is divided in space and time but in fact is interconnected. Such integration presents semantic organization of disembodied data into integral structures”1. (WORLD IMAGE. Selected works on psychology, M., 1983, p. 251-261).

As we use “related to the context” we mean that there are objects related to context as well as those that are unrelated ones. Objects related to context have been covered. What are objects and groups of objects which are unrelated to context? These are objects that cannot become actual ones otherwise but through recognition. On recognition a memory pointer to this object can be formed and reserved as part of objective reality image. Thus object and its interconnections (and possibly other related objects) can enter objective reality image. If the formed memory pointer cannot be connected with object or this pointer is damaged object remains “free” provided there are no other links in this object.

Here are precise definitions of the terms mentioned above.

Image of objective reality is context of n-level if n->∞.

Free object is object that has no memory pointer in the Image of objective reality.

Extra map is part of free object context. Every object of an extra map is free.

Extra maps appear either when memorizing is not obligatory (e.g., less important events are displaced by more important ones) or in case of memory pointer destruction. These phenomena can be displayed visually and the scheme is given in Appendix 2. It should be emphasized that the definition of objective realty image comprises subjective realty as part of objective realty.

Short-term Memory and Long-term Memory (STM and LTM)

What is the reason of such memory division? Is it possible that these two phenomena that seem to be different are actually two sides of one phenomenon? Let’s ponder on the pro arguments of division:

  1. Discovery of the magical number 7±2, this figure limits only STM span.

  2. Many experiments and clinical observations prove the ambivalent character of memory. The division into STM and LTM is determined by retrograde amnesia cases. Retrograde amnesia means memory loss for events that precede the effect of amnesic agent (electric shock, brain injury or pharmaceutical substance administration). People who suffered from amnesia caused by brain injury often fail to recollect the events that precede immediately the injury and they can remember earlier events. There are also frequent medical cases when people remember only those events that follow the injury case or on contrary fail to make new memories. The latter happens when hippocampus is damaged.

Let’s expand on the magical number 7±2. This figure does not limit STM information amount as the elements can be simple phenomena as well as complicated images and notions. A subject can memorize 7 unconnected syllables as well as 7 short sentences or 7 photos. Thus the amount of information varies greatly at least in terms of modern information theory. Applying the information model of memory one can deduct the following variants of STM structure:

  1. STM is one object that includes 7±2 memory pointers to objects which can be reserved in some other place of memory. The certain place we are going to indicate further in this paper.

  2. STM is 7±2 objects.

The issue of access time to STM and LTM is of great importance. Access time can be divided into time of access for reading and for recording. Obviously one should compare reading from STM and LTM access time, and recording in STM and LTM access time. Let’s cover reading access time first.

Access Time for Reading from, and Recording in STM and LTM.

To compare reading and recording access time we are going to examine the case when a subject has to recognize some image. Supposing picture presents some image of a plane. To recognize it a subject should compare the characters of the object, which is presented in the picture, and features of plane-object in his memory. As picture can present any object the information for comparison is taken from LTM as STM span is limited by 7 objects. Important is the fact that recognition does not take long time. In STM the object appears after recognition is finished. While reading an English text a subject has to recognize at least 26 letters and as maximum can read whole words. In this case the information is also taken from LTM. In this country there are reading speed standards only for pupils at primary school. They prescribe 30-60 words per minute for pupils in the 1st form, 90-110 for those of the 2nd form and 110-140 for children in the 3d form. There are no standards for other people. Thus standards valid in the USA have been used for research. The figures are taken from “Teach to read” by Borodina V. and Borodin S. In the USA reading rate with text comprehension more then 70% is the following:

Elementary school - 80-158 words per minute

Junior high school – 175-204 words per minute

High school - 214-250 words per minute

College and university - 250-280 words per minute

Highly qualified readers – 340-620 words per minute

Thus those who graduated from university read at an average rate of 4-10 words per second. These words are read using LTM.

Thus the reading from STM and LTM access speed has no significant differences. Speed of record in LTM can be established through reading speed and speed of comprehension i.e. speed of record is speed of reading multiplied assimilation quotient. In this case the speed of record is 3-7 words per second.

The given examples prove that record to LTM passes quickly: it takes 0.15-0.3 second and even less. As we has found out objects are kept in STM for any purpose but for further record to LTM i.e. they had been recorded to LTM earlier. That agrees with the results of Kraik and Watkins, 1973. The results are the following: memorizing does not depend on quantity of rehearsal and time of keeping information in STM. Thus two questions arise:

  1. What is the reason of keeping information in STM?

  2. What is the difference between information in LTM that we are able only to learn and information that we are able also to retrieve?

There is correlation between keeping of information and possibility of its reproduction out of LTM. Actually, the longer and more emotional it is processed in STM, the greater chance it will be reproduced out of LTM later. The definition of objective reality image has been given earlier. According to definition the image includes all objects that we can reproduce without recognition. Extra map consists of objects that can be available only through recognition. Thus it is justifiable that the longer and more emotional information is processed in STM, the greater chance it will be included into objective reality image. If information was not included into objective reality image it is still in LTM. This can be proved when recognizing some “forgotten” object. In most cases object is easy to recognize. And this means that information was located in extra map.

The memorizing of information can be presented as following:

  1. Recognition - establishing of correspondence between the given motivations and object. Then local object is created in LTM. The left link of this object points at the recognized object. By definition object is free when created. After it a memory pointer to the created object is placed in STM. STM is used for pointing at object; it is an access point to LTM. The actions with objects are carried out immediately in LTM. The actions with objects that are not indicated in STM cannot be carried out.

  2. Then the objects pointed at in STM experience necessary changes, e.g., their features and content are specified. Free object gets connections. A new extra map is formed. Important is that the process is undergoing immediately in LTM and the objects undergoing processing are those that pointed at in STM.

  3. All the time memory pointer at object is in STM, the pointer is being connected with objective realty image. The longer and emotional information is processed, the stronger connection between memory pointer and objective realty image. If memory pointer is formed in objective realty image, extra map is included into objective realty image. Otherwise extra map remains extra map and can be included into objective realty image later. In this case information processing is like an attempt to find some common places in new and previous experience. These common places are going to be connected with new information.

Consequence proved practically 1: Perception is always based on context. Thus an experiment can be carried out.

Suppose there is a picture. The image is drawn so that it supposes more than one image. A subject is ignorant about it. He has not seen it before. So the image he singles out depends on the context. And the image won’t change if the subject is unaware of dual character of the image. In other case it is difficult to stick to one image as context presupposes two variants of perception.

Consequence proved practically 2: Latent learning is possible by formation of extra maps. Skill can be partially formed beforehand in extra map. When skill is acquired extra map is included into objective realty map.

Other consequences proved practically.

Suppose memory fails to store information without any changes permanently. This can be proved by many research works (e.g., see works by Agafonov A.). Even the most stable memory sells as DNA undergo occasional errors. The specie survives thanks to such character of DNA as being conservative and stable. Obviously in elementary ontological memory errors occur much more often. We believe that some types of forgetting (those that are not connected with psychological guard mechanisms) are likely to be modulated by errors and reproductive interference in memory. These errors are system and cannot be excluded. Occasional errors happen constantly and the more time elapsed from the last access to this sell of memory, the more errors stored there. Thus the number of errors decreases and without some recovery and defence device keeping information in memory sounded nonsense. These errors are especially dangerous for links to objects. Due to error a link can point at nonexistent object or object that is not related to the initial one. Error in elementary record leads to modification in some quantity but not quality of information as the matter with link errors is. Currently we regard two possible variants of recovery process:

  1. Memory reminiscence. Reminiscence becomes mostly apparent within comprehended information i.e. in this case the number of links is maximum. Today there is no explanation of reminiscence.

We believe reminiscence to be some device for links recovery.

  1. Sleep and dreaming. Some researchers think that dreaming is connected with memory traces consolidation. Perhaps link recovery and memory traces consolidation have common roots.

Consequently, links are the least defended elements of memory. Obviously, some recovery device for links must exist. We’ve got consequences that can be proved practically:

  1. The most unstable and the least defended elements of memory are links.

  2. By number of damaged links one can say the time elapsed from the last recovery e.g., suppose the number of damaged links has no relation with time, so recovery happens regularly in each sell. Otherwise recovery can de detected through time it happens.

Consequence proved practically 3: Suppose links are the most unstable and the least defended elements, then the most stable are elementary records. More frequent are cases when one cannot remember but can recognize object. Less frequently one cannot recognize but is able to recollect.

Consequence proved practically 4: Let us consider the quantity of objects in STM once more. It is known that the average number is 7±2 i.e. about 7 memory pointers at some objects can be stored in STM simultaneously. Lots of mnemonics are known. This paper presents a simple one: as there are 7 pointers so there are 14 links. Thus STM can contain about 14 objects at a time. One should memorize not just an apple and a ship but an apple that looks like a ship. So the type of objects is the first word and the content of object is the second word.

Consequence proved practically 5: The more is the number of links to object, the oftener recovery affects this object and links of this objects and the least frequently they undergo damage and being lost. That concerns also links to elementary records, e.g., acoustic form of the object. This agrees with the results given in the model “Levels of processing”. The more is the degree of information processing i.e. the more links to it and in it, the more effectively it is stored. The tip-of-the-tongue effect serves to prove it. The least frequently does a subject come over this object, the least number of links to it is in memory. It means that object is exposed to link damaged and TOT effect.

Other consequences followed from this model.

Now we are going to consider other points and among them practical issues that appear from earlier results.

Tip-of-the- tongue (TOT) effect.

Suppose link goes to an empty place or other object (later we will explain how it happens). So link exists but object does not. We know that object is somewhere but cannot find it yet. This feeling is TOT effect when the word we are searching for is "on the tip of the tongue" but we cannot name it. But we can recognize it on the list of names if it is on it of course. We can form a new link and compare it with initial one and on the base of similarity state that they point at the same object. TOT effect is valid for both names and other objects. For example “I came into the room and forgot what was going to do”. In this case a subject forgot contain of the action as well as its name i.e. the link to object is lost.

Feeling “remember that I remember but don’t remember” (TOT effect).

While going by links we stop on one which points at nowhere. As the link exists we remember that we remember. But as we cannot go to object by this link so we feel that we remember but don’t remember.

Feeling-of-not-knowing (FOK effect).

While recognizing we don’t recognize object and the feeling-of-not-knowing appears.

Actual object”.

Let us imagine some object e.g., an air-plane and try to fix it in mind as long as possible. What is going on at that moment? Our mind uses one or more memory objects (they are actualized). At every moment of time the mind should be aware of the object i.e. keep in memory information about current (actualized) object (objects). It should be enough information for precise pointing at object which is at that moment in our mind. There are two possibilities:

  1. somewhere a full copy of object is kept.

  2. it is a memory pointer to object.

In previous paragraphs we have proved that it is impossible to create a copy, thus the information is a memory pointer to object. There is a set of pointers at actual elements of memory i.e. pointers at those elements which our mind is dealing with. Hereafter this set is called “actual set”. To call this set an object, we need link to object.

AXIOM 2: There is link to “actual set” and this link is in the set. Thus “actual set” is object in memory, hereafter actual object. Hereafter link at object that contains this link (this object can also include other pointers and elementary records) is called “reflexive link”.

The issue “which links are included into memory pointer containing reflexive link?” is still burning. Is reflexive link in charge of certain content of object or of classification? Perhaps the 2nd link also points at actual object and that gives extra possibilities for reflection. Hereafter reflexive pointer is pointer that contains link to object which includes this pointer.

DEF Actual object is object that contains reflexive pointer and pointer at object which is actualized at that moment in mind. We won’t mention reflective pointer further as this pointer is always actual one. Thus it is enough to say “Actual object” is object that contains pointers to objects actualized in mind at that moment.


What is the purpose of circular link in actual object? Let us imagine what is going on when consciousness goes by this link. It goes to actual object and observes the changes in this object. It can monitor how actual objects change. That agrees with the Locke’s definition of reflection: “reflection that reflects in our consciousness its (i.e. consciousness) own inner activity”.


What is consciousness? We believe that this phenomenon is equal to actual object. To prove it here are some definitions given by the well-known scholars.

Consciousness is such a text that is produced by reading it, that determines itself and refers to itself”1. (Mamardashvili M.)

Self-consciousness is the truth of consciousness: the latter is a consequence of the former, all consciousness of another object being as a matter of fact also self-consciousness” (Hegel H. –W.-F., the William Wallace translation of the 1830 text for “The philosophy of Spirit”).

Let us consider “Actual object”. This object contains reflexive link that enables consciousness to “look at itself”, notice changes in itself, changes in links to actual objects, notice them and feel, be and see itself from outside, reflex, read itself and realize itself.

Let us prove in some other way that consciousness is some field in memory. Only memory can memorize. Thus if consciousness is not memory it cannot memorize. But how it remembers that it has these or those functions and the way they operate? To remember it should be memory. One can oppose that consciousness may posses its own memory. But in this case consciousness is that memory. The rest are functions that memory remembers how to initiate, processing power that memory organizes and uses. Consequently, consciousness is something in memory and we believe it is likely to be Actual object. That is pointed also by Agafonov A. He says about the consciousness content “conscious content of consciousness”. If there is content it is located somewhere in memory thus it is the content of memory. Consequently, consciousness is some field of memory. One can oppose that consciousness just includes memory but if consciousness is not memory how it knows where its content in memory that it includes is located? If consciousness is not memory it cannot refer to experience as it does not remember (consciousness is not memory and memorizing is not its quality) where memory is located, where experience is located in memory and what experience is. We believe that not only consciousness is field in memory but such phenomena as attention and memory pointers at the current actual object are common in their character. According to our opinion many mechanisms and functions are elements and objects of memory. Memory is an active and self developing phenomenon. It manages processing power of psyche, reflects realty and affects the processes in this realty through behavior.

Appendix 1.

Lemma: z>n i.e. memory space of link is less than memory space of object.

To prove it let us create two objects in memory so that one object has a link to the second one and some other information. The second object has a link to the first one and some other information. These objects are analogies of “baseball bat” and “handle” i.e. bat consists of handle and some other parts, handle is part of baseball bat and some other objects.

Thus we have:

n1 – the memory space occupied by the link to the second object (this link is located in the 1st object)

n2 – the memory space occupied by the link to the first object (this link is located in the 2nd object)

k1=z1-n1, where z1 is the memory space occupied by the 1st object

k2=z2-n2, where z2 is the memory space occupied by the 2nd object

k1 is the memory space occupied by the rest information of the 1st object (the link to the second object is not included)

k2 is the memory space occupied by the rest information of the 2nd object (the link to the first object is not included)

k1 is always more then 0. It equals 0 if the 2nd object contains only one link.

k2 is always more then 0. It equals 0 if the 1st object contains only one link.

Let us prove by contradiction that z<=n. in our terms it presents the following inequations:



On summing them up we obtain

n1+n2>=n2+k2+n1+n2, transport all n2 and n1 on the left and we arrive at:

n1+n2-n1-n2>=k2+k1 i.e. 0>=k2+k1

This condition is met only when k1 and k2 equals 0. If objects contain other information this inequation is nonsatisfiable. Thus n<z unless object consists of only one link. In this case they can be equal.


1 Translated by E. Mushenkova.

1 Translated by E. Mushenkova.

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