What if you could hack into another person’s dreams and find out what they like, or what if doctors could hack into a PTSD patient’s dreams to see how to find a way to fix it? Hacking into dreams seems like a very interesting concept, however, it also seems very far-fetched. Can it be a reality or is it just a faux rumor being spread around?
A group of researchers at MIT Dream Lab, which was launched in 2017, has developed a device that can help you hack into dreams. In reality, it is a device that needs to be worn and it interacts with your dreams in various ways. This includes giving you a sense of control over your dream.
The goal behind developing this device was to prove to the world that dreams are not just useless gibberish we experience while we sleep, rather that they hold some sort of meaning and importance. They also wanted to show that dreams can easily be changed, influenced, and modified according to will at ease.
On average we spend a third of our life asleep. The researchers at MIT believe that we could structure this time better and modify it to benefit us in the future. The device is called Dormio and it is created with so many sensors that they can detect the type of sleep that has been induced and the state of sleep a person is in. When the wearer of the device goes into a hypnagogic state of sleep, where he or she is between consciousness and sub-consciousness, the device begins to play an audio cue that has been pre-set, usually just a word.
Researchers believe hypnagogic imagery or hypnagogic hallucinations are very common in the state of consciousness where one is moving between sleep and wakefulness. Some have reported having vivid auditory and visual hallucinations.
The workings of this device were shown through an experimental study conducted by Dream Lab which consisted of 50 people who were given the audio cue of the tiger within their state of hypnagogic sleep. They all ended up having a tiger in their dream.
A similar device was created previously by a member of Dream Lab which relied on smell rather than relying on audio cues. It was targeted for that part of sleep where the body begins to heal and regenerate. In this test, they used smells to consolidate the idea.