Everest Memory Challenge
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Nelson in Kathmandu

At Fusion-io, we embrace challenges and the people that push hard to achieve them. Two-time USA memory champion Nelson Dellis is no stranger to facing difficult challenges. Capable of memorizing a deck of shuffled cards in just 63 seconds and 303 digits in five minutes, Nelson missed reaching the summit of Everest by just two hundred and eighty feet in 2011.

As fellow champions of world-class memory systems, Fusion-io applauds Nelson's determination and is delighted to sponsor his quest to conquer Everest. So we're putting ourselves ­ and you via this website­ out there on the mountain with him. Along the way, he will send videos, blog entries, and various other dispatches from the climb.

In addition, you’ll be invited to compete with Nelson doing the kinds of memory exercises that he uses to keep his brain in shape as a memory champion facing the world's most extreme conditions. So while Nelson is facing the harshest elements imaginable, you can test your memory without risking the loss of fingers, nose and toes!

Please let us know how you are dealing with your mountains of data and how we can help you overcome your biggest challenges. If you'd like to help others overcome their mental memory challenges, you can also make a donation to Climb for Memory.

We hope you enjoy the climb.

As Nelson scales the mountain, you can follow his progress and see where all the camp locations are in relation to the summit. Join us as we follow Nelson to the top of the world.

The human brainAs he ascends and descends Mt. Everest, researchers from Washington University in St. Louis will be testing him on several memory tasks in the evenings after his climb. These tests are part of a larger project to better understand the mechanisms underlying exceptional memory abilities.

The researchers hope that by understanding the principles of people who exhibit exceptional memory, they will be in a better position to understand both general memory mechanisms, and techniques by which people can improve their memories. Ultimately, they hope the work will feed back into helping individuals who have breakdowns in memory, such as in the normal aging process and in individuals with early stage Alzheimer's disease and other dementias.

I work with Fusion-io because we share a commitment to advancing the cause of memory. We also share a common drive to challenge ourselves to do things others haven't. It's not your usual kind of partnership, but maybe that's why it works so well.

My big challenge right now is to get to the top of Mount Everest. Along the way, I will be testing my memory and raising money for Alzheimer's research. This will be my second try, the first one I came up short by two hundred eight feet due to a faulty oxygen tank.

I'm really happy to be teaming up with Fusion-io. We both understand exactly why it is so important to think about challenges like climbing Everest or architecting datacenters in new ways.

I aspire to have the world's best memory, using simple exercises that everyone can do to improve their retention skills. These exercises are like software that makes the hardware of my brain work better. Fusion-io works pretty much the same way, using computer software to make datacenter hardware work better, faster and more reliably than before. You see, in this way, we're both memory champions.

And that's a pretty cool connection. It's this connection between my goals and what Fusion-io continues to achieve that's resulted in us working together for almost two years now. I look forward to continuing to learn about the mountains Fusion-io customers face long after the challenge of Everest is over.

Nelson in front of Mount Everest
what mountains are you trying to scale same planet different world

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