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(ESL) Chimp's Memory

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Published on Apr 12, 2013

TRANSCRIPT
Chimp's Memory (2:54)

1. Professor is that as soon as Tetsuro Matsuzawa at the Kyoto Primate Research Institute in Japan has devised a memory test for the chimpanzees.

2. His star pupil is a seven-year-old chimpanzee.

3. Show him the numbers 1 to 9, and he'll put them in the right order, pointing to them one by one.

4. Every time he gets it right, he receives a treat, a tiny piece of apple or a raisin.

5. But now the researchers make things difficult.

6. As soon as the chimp presses the number 1, the rest of the numbers are hidden.

7. He has to remember where the numbers were and press the right squares in numerical order.

8. The positioning of the numbers is totally random.

9. He gets it right time after time with lightning speed and 100% accuracy.

10. In 0.65 seconds, he can remember the numerals—which numerals are in which position.

11. Now it's your turn. Did you get them? No? Try again.

12. This time will run the sequence at half speed.

13. Still too difficult? Try at a quarter speed? Back to full speed and you get an idea of how extraordinary this chimpanzee's memory is.

14. So, how do humans compare?

15. No one knows why, but children tend to be better than adults at this sort of short-term memory task.

16. We've asked some 9-year-olds to have a go.

17. They take a lot longer studying the numbers before they start.

18. And even then, most of the time they only get 4 or 5 right.

19. Occasionally they do a little better.

20. Not bad, but now watch the chimpanzee again.

21. It seems the chimp's short-term memory is superior to ours.

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