Memorization was once a tool for preserving information. But today the more important skill is the ability to process and filter it. To quickly decide what needs to be analyzed and responded to, and what ought to be ignored. That's not a cognitive loss, it's an evolutionary advancement.
This is from an eloquent piece (New York Times Editor Is A Horrible Troll Who Doesn't Understand The Modern World - Gizmodo) rebutting New York Times editor Bill Keller, who (somewhat famously, now -- at least if you're on Twitter) started a Twitter discussion about whether #TwitterMakesYouStupid.
Of course, it doesn't, though, as Mat Honan notes in the piece, it can be one of the things that, in this technological age, changes the way we think. It may even lead to changes in our neural pathways. Honan is right to point out how every medium has been decried as the end of human thinking -- including, he says of Socrates, writing -- and this is just one more.
He also points out that we no longer can remember everything we need, nor should we want to. Einstein, I have read, said that he didn't remember his own phone number because why memorize something, and use that brain power, for something you can look up?
I admire the Times, a lot, and the amazing work it does every day, and am willing to forgive it its gaffes. I am waiting, too, to see how open-minded Keller can be in learning from the responses to his Tweets. They can be part of an intelligent discussion about media and technology, and launch longer essays. They do not make someone stupid, though they may reinforce the tendencies of someone who already is headed in that direction.