Volunteers were recruited to participate in a study where they were asked to type 40 bits of trivia—for example, "an ostrich’s eye is bigger than its brain"—into a computer. A randomly selected half of these subjects were told the information would be saved in the computer; the other half were told the items they typed would be erased.
Then, the subjects were asked to remember these bits of trivia, and the number of bits of trivia each subject could correctly recall were recorded. It was found that the subjects were significantly more likely to remember information if they thought they would not be able to find it later.
The results of the study ___ be generalized to all people and a causal link between believing information is stored and memory ___ be inferred based on these results.