By Patricia Morrisroe

A fourth-generation insomniac, Patricia Morrisroe made up our minds that the single manner she’d ever overcome her lifelong sleep problem was once by way of changing into knowledgeable at the topic. So, armed with part a century of private adventure and a journalist’s interest, she trigger to discover one among life’s maximum mysteries: sleep. wakeful is the eye-opening account of Morrisroe’s quest—a compelling memoir that blends technology, tradition, and enterprise to inform the tale of why she—and 40 million different Americans—can’t sleep at night.            

Over the process 3 years of analysis and reporting, Morrisroe talks to sleep medical professionals, drug makers, psychiatrists, anthropologists, hypnotherapists, “wake experts,” bed salesmen, a magician, an astronaut, or even a reindeer herder. She spends an uncomfortable evening stressed up in a snooze lab. She attempts “sleep restriction” and “brain song therapy.” She buys a high-end sound desktop, customized ear plugs, and a “quiet” condominium within the nation to flee her noisy friends within the urban. She attends a continual scientific schooling path in Las Vegas, the place she discovers that medical professionals are one of the so much sleep-deprived humans within the nation. She travels to Sonoma, California, the place she attends a Dream Ball costumed as her “dream self.” to meet a youth fable, she celebrates Christmas Eve 200 miles north of the Arctic Circle, within the famed Icehotel tossing and turning on an ice mattress. ultimately, after touring the globe, she unearths the reply to her insomnia correct round the nook from her condo in big apple City. 

A spell binding mixture of own perception, technological know-how and social statement, Wide Awake examines the position of sleep in our more and more hyperactive tradition. For the thousands who are suffering from sleepless nights and hazy caffeine-filled days, this funny, thought-provoking and finally hopeful publication is a vital bedtime spouse. It does, in spite of the fact that, include a caution: analyzing it is going to advertise wakefulness.

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Extra resources for Wide Awake: What I Learned About Sleep from Doctors, Drug Companies, Dream Experts, and a Reindeer Herder in the Arctic Circle

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Memes can spread for other reasons too, including less benign ones. They might spread because they appear to provide advantages even when they do not, because they are especially easily imitated by human brains, because they change the selective environment to the detriment of competing memes, and so on. With a meme’s eye view we ask not how inventions benefit human happiness or human genes, but how they benefit themselves. Turning to more modern technology, from the invention of the wheel to the design of cars, there is plenty of evidence that innovations evolve in the sense that they arise from what went before.

Perhaps the answer seems too obvious – that it was biologically adaptive. But, as we shall see, this is not necessarily the right answer, and memetics can provide new twists to the argument. 26 THE MEME MACHINE Inventions as memes Another example is the spread of inventions. Probably the most important of all ‘inventions’ in human history was that of farming. Although there are still many arguments over the details, archaeologists generally agree that before about 10000 years ago all humans lived by hunting and gathering.

However, they cannot be just a bare instruction to ‘Copy me’. This might succeed in clogging up the entire memory of the first computer it got into but would have no way of getting any further. So viruses have co-memes for promoting their survival. They lurk in the programs that people mail to their friends on disks. Some evade immediate detection by infecting only a small proportion of the machines they reach, and some are triggered probabilistically. Some bury themselves in memory only to pop up at a specified time – we may expect many at midnight on 31 December 1999 – quite apart from the looming problem of computers that cannot cope with the year ‘00’.

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Wide Awake: What I Learned About Sleep from Doctors, Drug Companies, Dream Experts, and a Reindeer Herder in the Arctic Circle by Patricia Morrisroe

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