Researchers from the MIT Dream Lab are working on an open-source device that could be used to monitor and influence dreams in several ways. It is theorized that it could be used to alter a dream in real-time.
The main goal of this project is to prove the dreams aren’t only a by-product of sleep and that they can be improved and tailored according to our wishes. Dreams have fascinated humanity since the early days, with some arguing that they are nothing more than illusions while others vouch for their prophetic nature. Modern science infers that they have no practical influence on our lives.
According to one of the researchers involved in the project, dreaming can be deemed to be an alternate form of thinking, but scientists haven’t been interested in the way in which our brains guide and process these nocturnal thoughts.
Dreams are no mystery for MIT
Previous research has inferred that dreams can play an essential role in the fixation of memories, regulation of emotions, and mental health. Still, the new initiative is quite ambitious as it wants to observe what happens when dreams are manipulated and changed effectively.
For this purpose, MIT decided to establish the Dream Lab is a division of the more giant Media Lab Fluid Interfaces Group. Part of the aim to construct a device that can interact with dreams is represented by the sub-aim to prove that dreams are more than random thoughts which take place chaotically during the night.
Humans spend almost a third of their lives sleeping, and that time could be put to better use with the help of devices that can be used to enhance dreams. The current prototype, Dormio, can encourage a state of lucid dreaming and offer access to free association and a more evident flow of thoughts. Further research is needed, but the technology appears to be promising.