I sometimes have trouble recognizing faces, matching faces to people I've interacted with in the past. It's not a disease like prosopagnosia, I can certainly tell the difference between faces and have no trouble with people I work with directly. But if I haven't seen someone in a while, I may not recognize them or confuse them for someone else. It's especially bad out of context, say running into a professor in my campus on the streets of Frankfurt. It's gotten worse with age but I've had challenges my whole life.
I have my coping mechanisms. I start a conversation to get enough clues to figure out who I'm talking to. I'll google an image before I'm supposed to meet someone I haven't seen in a while. Sometimes I'll just say "Remind me how to pronounce your name again". Sometimes I'll just say something embarrassing thinking the person I'm talking to is someone else.
Name tags are useful, if it isn't obvious you are looking at them. Zoom has been great--everyone's name is just there. I worry that 18 months of zoom meetings means I've lost much of my coping ability, much the way I can no longer navigate by maps the way I used to.
We have technological solutions but mostly unable to make use of them. Through the magic of machine learning, computers have gotten extremely good at recognizing faces. Nevertheless Google Googles actively prevented their one killer app, telling you who you were looking at, for privacy reasons. Perhaps they could limit it to people in your contacts with pictures you uploaded. It would only recognize people you already know.
I know I'm not alone, and I'm writing this post so others won't feel alone. And next time you see me and I look confused, remind me of your name.