[BCAB] Technology in our brain

Vic Pereira vic.pereira at virn.ca
Fri Oct 25 23:33:29 BST 2019

Hello Colin

Practice and necessity do play a role. However people are different. Mind
Mapping is a writer's block technique to help them get past a mental
barrier. Two common methods are to put the word in the middle of a page
related to the topic. Then write the words that pop into your head on the
page. One method has lines radiating connecting the words while another
leaves the page blank. Each has its advantages and limitations.

Back to mapping areas, although there are exceptions of course, I find there
is a gender difference when I ask someone for directions. Often males will
give me compass directions like go south for two blocks then cross the
street and turn west right away. And should it be a female giving me
directions, landmarks come into play. Walk toward the yellow building and
turn left keeping the glass building with the multi coloured awning on your
right. This isn't 100 percent of the time, however it seems to be about 80
20. So I've learned to break my route down and ask specific questions to get
me to the next decision point.

While indoors, some people are very good at quickly creating a map of how
the rooms are laid out and where the hallways go. Then there are people who
can navigate after some practice, but cannot draw a general diagram showing
that the kitchen is on the other side of this living room wall as an

I have had travel agents with whom I've booked trips tell me when we chat
and they get my opinion on a trip, I often give them more detail than their
sighted clients. I don't think it has anything to do with my vision or lack
there of, but the fact that I am curious and like to explore and discover
things. Now that GPS technologies are more economical and accessible, I am
very happy.


-----Original Message-----
From: Colin Phelan <Colin_Phelan at pmlgroup.com> 
Sent: Friday, October 25, 2019 01:27 AM
To: BCAB Discussion List <bcab at lists.bcab.org.uk>
Subject: [BCAB] Technology in our brain

Hi All,
I had an interesting conversation with a brother in law after to many
glasses of wine a few weeks back.
My wife's family, including me, hired a stately home for the weekend for a
The building was all over the shop with corridors, steps hanging beams and
all sorts of hideaways for the children to have fun.
It was put to me as to how did I orientate myself and recall the layout so
quickly as sighted people were having issues with the layout - my answer was
practice and necessity.
It was then suggested that it was a form of mind mapping which I had never
considered, does this resonate with anyone and has there been any work done
on how people with limited vision do or may excel in such techniques along
with other uses for such skills?
I feel like I have missed something or he is talking nonsense and I am not
sure which?
Thanks for reflections


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