The bit value of working memory

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Abstract

The present study was based on the hypothesis that a limited amount of information can be simultaneously processed in working memory. The main objective was to determine the capacity of working memory under experiment conditions and express it in terms of bits of information. The bit values of the selected objects used in the experiment were determined using Shannon's formula. The objects were presented to the participants as a set of charts. Each chart presented a four-element object with a particular bit value. The elements constituted commonly known signs, with no difficulty in perception. The efficiency of object recollection from working memory decreased as the bit value of the object increased. In each of the experiments, the bit value of the recollected information oscillated between 26.7 and 31.9. The present results did not confirm sex differences in working memory function.

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