forgetting something is not always bad. by forgetting, you allow yourself to look at the same thing with "fresh eyes". i think forgetting also helps to "cleanse" your working memory of irrelevant details, so that you only keep the most important ideas in mind and can use the freed up working memory to store some new irrelevant/contingent details.
stuff to add to this page:
- some stuff from the SuperMemo wikis
- keywords: functional fixedness, Einstellung effect
Andrew Wiles quote: "I really think it's bad to have too good a memory if you want to be a mathematician. You need a slightly bad memory because you need to forget the way you approached [a problem] the previous time because it's a bit like evolution, DNA. You need to make a little mistake in the way you did it before so that you do something slightly different and then that's what actually enables you to get round [the problem]."
Richard Borcherds says similar things in a youtube interview with curt jaimungal.