Google searching has become so integral in the Information Age that our brains are using the search engine as a virtual cloud server instead of remembering facts themselves.The ubiquity of the misspelt, misappropriation of googol became overtly apparent in 2006, when the Oxford English Dictionary began recognising Google as a verb.
If you look it up in the dictionary, to Google is ‘to use the Google search engine to find information on the Internet.’
And now it seems like our brains are just as confident in Google to the point that we forget things which we’re confident we can simply search for on the Internet according to a Columbia University psychologist.
“Since the advent of search engines, we are reorganizing the way we remember things,” said Betsy Sparrow, who yesterday published research on the phenomenon in Science.
“Our brains rely on the Internet for memory in much the same way they rely on the memory of a friend, family member or co-worker. We remember less through knowing information itself than by knowing where the information can be found.”
The paper, titled “Google Effects on Memory: Cognitive Consequences of Having Information at Our Fingertips,” is believed to be the first research of its kind related to search engines’ impact on the way human memory is organised.