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Internal memory is information stored in one’s brain, and external memory is information stored outside of one’s brain (either socially, or technologically). Results from a comprehensive online survey (N = 476) revealed an overall picture of a growing symbiosis between internal and external memory. The two complement and depend on each other. Technological external memory (both low-tech and high-tech) is augmenting internal memory for episodic purposes, and supplanting internal memory for semantic and prospective purposes. We offer a new theoretical framework for understanding the interplay of internal and external memory, and their complementary strengths.
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