Monday, December 25, 2006

Fan Sniffing

I just noticed something funny. If I move my pc from my place to another, for example to a LAN party, or to my parents house, or to the repair shop, and let it run for some time while at this other place, the spinning fans inside the computer make the local air run through its interior. Then, when I take the computer back to my place again, and start it up and the fans start spinning, for a couple of seconds, I can smell the air from the place it has last been running in, and if I close my eyes it's almost like I was back there. I find this a good illustration of the (recently proven) fact that olfactory stimuli can trigger memories in a much more realistic and complete way then auditory or visual stimuli can. It is thought that it has something to do with the olfactory system being neuroanatomically profoundly connected with the limbic system (emotion centre).