News Stories

Dream Machine

The Japanese company Takara, which invented decoders to help you understand what your cat and dog are "saying," has invented a product which lets you create you own dreams.

The first step is recording your future dream by describing it to a special tape recorder. When you're asleep, the recorder senses when your body is having periods of rapid eye movement (REM) sleep, which is when people dream, then it plays the recording, along with appropriate lights, music and smells. Takara's Kenji Hattori says, "Some said the theme was right, but the story-line was wrong. Some said the noise woke them up. But it has worked for quite a number of people."

After eight hours, you're woken up gently with music and lights that simulate sunlight, in order to help you remember your dream.

Feeling sleepy? The average yawn lasts six seconds. Sarah Krisel writes in The Exponent that we know yawning is natural because fetuses do it in the womb. But psychologist Gordon G. Gallup says we don't know why we do it. Scientists once thought people yawned because there was too much carbon dioxide in their blood and they needed more oxygen, but most of them have discarded that theory.

We do know it's contagious--if you see someone else do it, you'll probably do it too. Blind people yawn after hearing people yawning on an audio tape. Reading about yawning will even make you do it.

Scientists who still adhere to the oxygen depravation theory say people yawn in groups because there's not enough oxygen to go around when they?re breathing normally.

For tens of thousands of years, we existed as hunter-gatherers. Then, suddenly, civilization. What really happened? Will Hart offers some revolutionary answers. His is probably the best case ever made for the genetic engineering of mankind. Don't miss Whitley's interview with him on this week's Dreamland!

To learn more,click here and {http://www.purdueexponent.org/interface/bebop/showstory.php?date=2004/01/14

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