Dream control at MIT

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Courtesy of the Daily Grail, here's an interesting article at Motherboard about the development of a system called Dormio, for prolonging and influencing the hypnagogic state that's normally experienced as we fall asleep. Based on physiological monitoring, when the subject is in danger of falling asleep fully, a robotic voice is used to rouse him/her back into the the hypnagogic state. The robotic voice can also be used to influence the content of the hypnagogic visions - for example by saying "Remember to think about a rabbit".

It seems this is essentially a high-tech version of a trick Thomas Edison used to wake himself up when he fell asleep, by holding steel balls in his hand, which dropped to the floor when he lost consciousness.

Apparently the idea is that the hypnagogic state fosters creativity - and the researchers claim to see evidence of this in their tests so far. But - particularly as the subjects are able to speak while in the hypnagogic state (but not necessarily to remember what they've said) - if this technology really works it will offer an obvious opportunity for parapsychology research. 

It's also part of a wider programme of research at MIT, which includes technology to "alter the emotional content of dreams and memory consolidation during Rapid Eye Movement (REM) and Deep Sleep" and to "administer muscle stimulation to arms and legs and change the kinesthetic content of dreams":
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Quote:Horowitz described similar links between the hypnagogic experiences of his subjects during their Dormio sessions and their waking lives. For example, when one of his subjects was prompted with the word ‘fork’ it caused him to mutter “forks are colonialism.”

Forks are colonialism. I love it.

This technology looks pretty cool.
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  • Typoz
(2018-04-24, 09:44 AM)Laird Wrote: Forks are colonialism. I love it.

I'd think knives are somewhat universal - in use from stone age times in one form or another. But forks - a curious concept - and not so easy to make by chipping at a flint nodule.
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(2018-04-24, 09:44 AM)Laird Wrote: Forks are colonialism. I love it.

Again, I thought hypnagogic word association might be the basis for some interesting psi experiments.
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Very cool stuff, I'll pick one up as soon as they are available assuming they aren't too expensive.

I'd love to work for a lab like this.
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(2018-05-09, 09:45 PM)letseat Wrote: Very cool stuff, I'll pick one up as soon as they are available assuming they aren't too expensive.
Likewise.  I love this kind of technology.  I had a Mindlab Orion once but sadly had to sell it.  Always wanted a Ganzfeld as well.
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Courtesy of the Daily Grail, the BBC has a report on the Dormio device:

The article has some discussion from Antonio Zadra, a psychologist from the University of Montreal, including a comment that dreams in deep REM sleep are "impervious to external attempts to influence them". The project description cited above mentioned that the workers at MIT were hoping to develop ways of influencing dreams during REM and Deep Sleep. This being the BBC, we're not given any indication what Zadra's scepticism is based on.

The article also says the MIT group plans to share the vast "trove" of literature on the subject in an accessible way. It might be interesting to know how, when and where this is going happen, but this being the BBC ...
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