Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

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If you could eliminate the ability and need for sleep, would you do it?

Yes
125
66%
No
54
28%
I will explain my answer in the thread.
11
6%
 
Total votes: 190

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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby scarecrovv » Mon Aug 18, 2008 7:30 pm UTC

I would only want it if these conditions were met (in order of importance, but they're all deal-breakers):

I could sleep if I wanted to, whenever I wanted to.
There were no negative effects of not sleeping if I didn't want to.
Nobody else (or only people I chose) had that ability.
Nobody else (or only people I chose) knew I had that ability.
The procedure was reversible (just in case there is some bad unintended consequence I haven't thought of).

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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby Mo0man » Mon Aug 18, 2008 7:50 pm UTC

scarecrovv wrote:I would only want it if these conditions were met (in order of importance, but they're all deal-breakers):

I could sleep if I wanted to, whenever I wanted to.
There were no negative effects of not sleeping if I didn't want to.
Nobody else (or only people I chose) had that ability.
Nobody else (or only people I chose) knew I had that ability.
The procedure was reversible (just in case there is some bad unintended consequence I haven't thought of).

What'if you go crazy as a side effect, and as a result of that crazy, you no longer want to reverse it?
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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby the_bandersnatch » Mon Aug 18, 2008 7:59 pm UTC

I would administer this wonder drug to my minions so they could work ceaselessly day and night on my world-destroying top secret projects. I would also take it myself so I have more time to plan my diabolical schemes. Scheme #1: Remove the joy of sleep from everyone in the entire world! Mwhaha!
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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby Deep Thought » Mon Aug 18, 2008 8:00 pm UTC

scarecrovv wrote:I would only want it if these conditions were met (in order of importance, but they're all deal-breakers):

I could sleep if I wanted to, whenever I wanted to.
There were no negative effects of not sleeping if I didn't want to.
Nobody else (or only people I chose) had that ability.
Nobody else (or only people I chose) knew I had that ability.
The procedure was reversible (just in case there is some bad unintended consequence I haven't thought of).


I agree with scarcrovv, except that anyone could have it; that wouldn't make any difference in my eyes. Why was that a deal-breaker for you?

Being free of the need to sleep would be great. Far to often are thoughts, discussions, adventures, etc., inconveniently interrupted by exhaustion. But giving up dreaming wouldn't be worth it. Not even close.

Need: yes
Ability: no

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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby Hoshi no Kabii » Tue Aug 19, 2008 5:06 pm UTC

Deep Thought wrote:
scarecrovv wrote:Nobody else (or only people I chose) had that ability.
Nobody else (or only people I chose) knew I had that ability.


I agree with scarcrovv, except that anyone could have it; that wouldn't make any difference in my eyes. Why was that a deal-breaker for you?
I would imagine because he wants to be alone at night. If we didn't need to sleep, wouldn't more people be out at night? There would be no way to escape people, except for physically running away to a remote mountain or something.

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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby Vox Imperatoris » Tue Aug 19, 2008 5:46 pm UTC

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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby Deep Thought » Tue Aug 19, 2008 10:43 pm UTC

Hoshi no Kabii wrote:I would imagine because he wants to be alone at night. If we didn't need to sleep, wouldn't more people be out at night? There would be no way to escape people, except for physically running away to a remote mountain or something.

That makes sense. Night walks are quite fun, but half of the reason that they are is the fact that there are few people walking with you. One, it's peaceful, and two, you feel a certain kinship to those others who are out. That feeling would be amplified if only a select few were able to do away with sleep. You'd look at everyone on the street and wonder if they were able to be out for the same reason you were.

For that reason I wouldn't want to choose. It would be great if it was a spontaneous thing..
Last edited by Deep Thought on Thu Aug 21, 2008 7:03 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby ParanoidAndroid » Wed Aug 20, 2008 7:34 am UTC

I wouldn't take it. I enjoy many things about sleeping. See the Dreams thread.

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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby lowbart » Thu Aug 21, 2008 2:55 pm UTC

I would use it occasionally. I wouldn't want a permanent version. Sleeping is nice.
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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby Nexus_1101 » Thu Aug 21, 2008 3:00 pm UTC

if i could take one to not need to sleep that night then i would use it from time to time, but if you have ever woken up next to some one you love you will never know, so if you have you know why i wouldent take a "permenent" type.

although on the flip side hangovers and waking up in the wrong place/situation is also bad.
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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby Sprocket » Thu Aug 21, 2008 3:19 pm UTC

As much as I love dreaming, I would take the pill.

I feel like the phrase "eliminate the need for sleep" would include a way to get all the various memory and learning functions that take place during sleep, without sleep. Other wise you really haven't eliminated the need.

I would get SO much more done, I'd have the time I want to relax and then do work too. That's my biggest problem is that when I leave work, I need to see friends and have time to unwind, and I don't end up getting anything done. If I had time to do that, and then 8 more hours, I'd get things done, I'd learn to play an instrument, learn math, computer science, get a degree in geoscience, learn another language, learn to draw really well, write a novel, write a script, make a film....I'd do all those things I don't do.
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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby tryptanymph » Thu Aug 21, 2008 3:21 pm UTC

Sprocket wrote:As much as I love dreaming, I would take the pill.

I feel like the phrase "eliminate the need for sleep" would include a way to get all the various memory and learning functions that take place during sleep, without sleep. Other wise you really haven't eliminated the need.

I would get SO much more done, I'd have the time I want to relax and then do work too. That's my biggest problem is that when I leave work, I need to see friends and have time to unwind, and I don't end up getting anything done. If I had time to do that, and then 8 more hours, I'd get things done, I'd learn to play an instrument, learn math, computer science, get a degree in geoscience, learn another language, learn to draw really well, write a novel, write a script, make a film....I'd do all those things I don't do.

This, only with more rocking out. :)

SO GIVE ME THIS PILL DAMMIT!
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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby Toeofdoom » Thu Aug 21, 2008 6:09 pm UTC

I have to say, while I have said I wanted this in the past, I would be extremely skeptical about side effects.





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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby MPG143 » Tue Apr 16, 2013 6:48 am UTC

Although I would love to eliminate sleeping. I am going to say no. The reason behind it is that if there was such pill that could do that. The side effects might be fatal. There is no way for a pill to do what an 8 hour rest can do. I will admit that the pill might be able to trick the brain. However, the body and the brain will wear out a lot faster causing your life span to shorten. So maybe there will be a way for humans not to sleep but it will give humans a shorter life span.

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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby Puppyclaws » Tue Apr 16, 2013 12:30 pm UTC

scarecrovv wrote:I would only want it if these conditions were met (in order of importance, but they're all deal-breakers):

I could sleep if I wanted to, whenever I wanted to.
There were no negative effects of not sleeping if I didn't want to.
Nobody else (or only people I chose) had that ability.
Nobody else (or only people I chose) knew I had that ability.
The procedure was reversible (just in case there is some bad unintended consequence I haven't thought of).


Take off the last clause, and the "whenever I wanted to" from the first clause, and this is basically my position. If everybody has it, I really do not want it. I can imagine a lot of negative cultural shifts.

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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby cplns » Tue Apr 16, 2013 4:02 pm UTC

Oh God, no. Keep that pill away from me.

Sleeping is one of the few activities I actually enjoy doing. It gives me a break from the world and from people, and as sad as it is, I look forward to it from the moment I wake up in the morning. Add in the fact that my dreams are almost always entertaining, and that I haven't had a nightmare in years since I learned to lucid dream... Why would I ever give that up?

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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby Pfhorrest » Tue Apr 16, 2013 5:25 pm UTC

cplns wrote:I haven't had a nightmare in years since I learned to lucid dream

I'm curious: do you ever have nightmares of perfectly mundane negative situations (boss is mad at you, getting a speeding ticket, etc) that don't trigger your "hey this is a dream" realization? I've had almost nothing but lucid dreams since my early 20s, and the only nightmares I ever have are ordinary problems like that. So long as nothing "weird" happens to tip me off that I'm dreaming, I'm not really certain that I'm dreaming or not, so I actually get "scared" as I would in real life. Until the anxiety is enough to wake me, at which point I realize it was all a dream... and go back into it to to fix it.

On a relate note, have you found the boundaries between daydreaming and actual dreaming have lessened due to your lucid dreaming? I've always had a pretty vivid imagination, and now that dreams have that same "fourth wall" to them as daydreams do, where I'm aware of its fictional nature and can control and rewind and rewrite events, I sometimes have trouble telling whether I was just daydreaming about something as I was lying in bed before/after actually sleeping, or if I actually dreamed it while asleep. The only things I'm really sure were dreams are things that it took me a bit to realize were dreams, so I'm left with this "poorly written" surreal scenario to work with once I realize it's not real, instead of a tighter scenario I would have crafted myself if daydreaming from the start.

Tying this into the actual topic of the thread: I would totally love to never have to sleep per se, so long as I can still daydream as vividly as dreaming, and I still got to lie still with my girl in my arms and clear my mind and zen out, and didn't have to be "on" like during a work day for the extra hours I would get (but could if I wanted to!). Basically, provided I could retain access at will to the wakeful states which border sleep, and society didn't change to suck up all the benefits of this ability, I would love to be able to skip the actual unconscious periods of the night. I would probably still lie comfortably in bed and let my mind wander as though dreaming for some part of each night... and then I'd get up and act on the cool ideas I had instead of just hoping I still remember them enough the next day to write a note to follow up on them after I retire and actually have time to do shit.
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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby screen317 » Tue Apr 16, 2013 7:56 pm UTC

I'd only do it if it was for me only, and if all circadian detriments from lack of sleep were gone (immune effects notwithstanding).

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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby cplns » Tue Apr 16, 2013 11:24 pm UTC

Pfhorrest wrote:I'm curious: do you ever have nightmares of perfectly mundane negative situations (boss is mad at you, getting a speeding ticket, etc) that don't trigger your "hey this is a dream" realization?

When I start to have a nightmare, it's almost always an extreme, life-or-death-or-torture-or-murder-or-rape type terror, so automatically my mind goes "Whoa, hey, whoa, I'm calling bullshit shenanigans." If I've ever had the normal failing a test or showing up somewhere naked dreams, I don't remember them. But I'm sure because of that, if I ever did have one, I wouldn't be able to recognize it while it was happening, just because it's never happened.

Pfhorrest wrote:On a relate note, have you found the boundaries between daydreaming and actual dreaming have lessened due to your lucid dreaming?

My creativity seems to only come out in dreams - it's where I get all of my writing ideas, and where I'm entertained for a few hours (namely because I'm never myself in my dreams, I'm always some character or random person I've never known before). I've never really daydreamed, I don't think, or if I have it's such a foreign concept to me that I didn't realize it. Which is alright with me, really; I'm already dingy enough that if I started daydreaming, my head would probably just float away.

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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby Fire Brns » Wed Apr 17, 2013 7:12 am UTC

I don't dream so I think you can guess my answer.

I loath sleep, it's an hour on both ends of just getting ready to sleep and getting up and ungroggy from sleep plus 6-8 hours of an incredibly vulnerable physical state. I would even take this pill if it reduced my overall lifespan by the time I didn't sleep when I would have been because at least i would have that time with a usable body.
I would use that extra time to continue learning. I always hate having to put a book down because I have to be up the next day at a certain time and then being to busy that next day to pick it back up.

I used to dream when I was a kid (I don't know why is stopped), everything was fuzzy, I would forget it all when I woke up, and anything I did in my dream was lost when I woke up. Dreams suck; real life is vivid, memorable, and is accessible at all times.
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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby Vieto » Fri Apr 19, 2013 10:09 am UTC

I voted yes, given that I would rather not have to sleep. I would still want a mechanism for REM though, as that is important for long term memory (so a dreaming device, like that in that one James Bond movie, would probably be necessary for long term sanity).

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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby Weeks » Sun Apr 21, 2013 6:08 pm UTC

I'd rather have a pill to reduce the amount of sleep I need to be fully rested to something like 4 hours. I sleep too goddamn much.
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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby Sheikh al-Majaneen » Sun Apr 21, 2013 7:52 pm UTC

This sounds like a dream for people who specifically make money off the labor of others. Give it to your employees, give it to your customers, watch the profits increase hugely.

It would be a nightmare, as its normalization would exclusively come from its service to productivity and the economy. Don't sleep, your country needs you! The message would come from the same people who got upset in 2008/09 when a lot of people put their wages into paying off already-existing debts instead of taking more on to buying expensive products built to break, trying to keep ourselves from drowning in a skyscraper-deep ocean of economy-semen instead of diving deeper and giving it another blow job.

So, no, I would not take the pill which eliminates the need for sleep except in a few specific circumstances.

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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby m4d4sb34ns » Sun Apr 21, 2013 8:35 pm UTC

The issues people raise about it becoming the new norm are good ones. I'm not comfortable with the idea of "needing" to do this to keep up with other people, but inevitably I would end up doing so if this pill were commonly available. I imagine adderall-like drugs in general use (outside US colleges, I mean) would swiftly follow.

In general, I'm not particularly bothered about sleep either way, having no particular trouble getting to sleep or waking up these days. If I had exclusive use of this sort of drug I'd probably take it for a while to see what sort of thing I can actually get done in that extra time, but apart from sitting around on the computer working and trawling StumbleUpon/these forums, I imagine most activities would be too noisy. I think after taking the drug constantly for a while being able to sleep would be preferable just as an easy "fast-forward" to the next period of being able to be sociable.

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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby ucim » Sun Apr 21, 2013 11:11 pm UTC

These type of questions imply "all else being equal", but all else can never be equal, leaving it to your imagination what things would be held constant. Lifespan is typically assumed constant, but what if it were measured in waking hours rather than calendar years?

Suppose your body wears out only during waking hours, so you will die in an earlier calendar year if you took the pill, but you'd have just as many waking hours as you would have? Something similar happens with fatal accidents - their likelihood remains constant during waking hours so your exposure is greater, and it has the same effect as above.

Now would you take the pill?

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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby Tomlidich the second » Mon Apr 22, 2013 4:15 pm UTC

something that i would seriously have to consider is could i live with a never ending stream of constant conciousness, till the day i die?

anytime you are lonely, or sad, you wouldn't be able to just go to sleep and relax a bit, you would constantly stew on it.

my time would end up being spent like most of my nights would be, glued to a computer screen. is this really living?

sure, you can remove the physical needs for sleep, but one would have to wonder about the psychological effects of never missing anything ever. constantly thinking, feeling, and perceiving without any breaks.
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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby Woopate » Wed Apr 24, 2013 11:05 am UTC

Hmm, with the ability to sleep intact, few negative side effects, and it being a me-only proposition: yes.

A society where it was the norm would obviously be terrible for the reasons above.

If I had some sort of mechanism where I could perform purely mental functions interacting with a computer within a sleep-state, and retain the benefits of sleep, I would do that instead much more readily.

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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby Vieto » Thu Apr 25, 2013 4:43 am UTC

It's like immortality: If it was normal in society, it could be potentially terrible. If only you (and few others) had it, and there were no negative side effects (aging/long term memory disruption), then it becomes awesome, and you gain so much time!

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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby astrekmaster » Sun Apr 28, 2013 7:40 am UTC

Tomlidich the second wrote:Sure, you can remove the physical needs for sleep, but one would have to wonder about the psychological effects of never missing anything ever. Constantly thinking, feeling, and perceiving without any breaks.

I think the same thing. Switching from 16 hour blocks of waking to always being awake would be hard. I think that your mind needs those breaks to separate one day from the next, otherwise you'd go insane or at the very least lose all sense of timing.

Also, being the only person in the world that doesn't need sleep would be extremely lonely.
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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby Puppyclaws » Sun Apr 28, 2013 3:33 pm UTC

astrekmaster wrote:
Tomlidich the second wrote:Sure, you can remove the physical needs for sleep, but one would have to wonder about the psychological effects of never missing anything ever. Constantly thinking, feeling, and perceiving without any breaks.

I think the same thing. Switching from 16 hour blocks of waking to always being awake would be hard. I think that your mind needs those breaks to separate one day from the next, otherwise you'd go insane or at the very least lose all sense of timing.

Also, being the only person in the world that doesn't need sleep would be extremely lonely.


I have been awake for three and four days in a row, at times. I think any effects to my sanity were mostly the effects of sleep deprivation and drug use. It gave the world a crazed, happy quality. I think that you could adjust pretty well to the day thing. As long as you have the sun around; being able to see the sun and living in a place where it does the day/night thing is pretty important to that element of feeling like you have distinct days, when you don't sleep.

As far as loneliness, it depends on who you are. Personally, the idea of having an additional 8 hours where nobody bothers me sounds heavenly. If I was the type to get lonely, I might try to develop night friendships and day friendships, night relationships and day relationships. But, if you are strictly interested in monogamous relationships, and feel lonely around people who are not your SO, then I guess I could see how it might get lonely? I dunno.

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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby billnadair » Tue Apr 30, 2013 10:30 am UTC

I suppose there would be mechanisms to stop insanity from creeping in (well, in a way that would be related to the new 24 hour cycle everybody would have to keep up with) but even than the issue of fairness comes to play. Would it be something the better off can afford to take to increase their chances of success; à la Adderall, amphetamines or even caffeine, because I know that my coffee and tea habit is a result of my relativity good position as a middle class person and it definitely helps increase my productivity so should I stop drinking it so that I'm on an even playing field with others who don't or can't drink coffee or other caffeinated beverages? How about my PC and internet, is it fair that some can't afford one as nice as mine or that I don't have a nice a one as others? You could say that the government could subsidize it, but should they? They don't give away attention focusing drugs or nicer computers so why should they give away the über No Doz? I feel the problem wouldn't be physical need or preference for sleep, but instead the question would be, who will get the drug and will it be "fair". I think that society needs to advance a bit further before it can be answered in the way that something like that should be. Or just go swimming in the deep end like most other revolutionary things and hope the floating bits of dung that will spread everywhere if or when poop hits the fan (pool pump?) won't get in your mouth.

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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby maninblack » Wed May 01, 2013 2:10 pm UTC

I voted no for three main reasons:

(In no particular order)

1 Hallucinations: I've gone 48+ hours without sleep in the past and the hallucinations (while entertaining at times) would get in the way of work.
2 Physical Rest: If you remove the need for sleep, when would your body rest? I would assume that one would need similar amount of physical rest even if one would not need sleep. Which, to me anyway, implies that one would need to spend roughly a third of one's life in a sort of wakeful rest state.
3 Sleep naturally follows certain activities: Two come quickly to my mind, moderate (or heavier) drinking, and sex. I enjoy both of those activities, and often find myself nearly incapable of doing anything other than sleeping afterwards, which I'm ok with. If, however, I were not able to sleep after these activities I assume I'd need a period of that wakeful rest, and to be honest that's not even almost the same. I have in the past done a couple periods of moderate drinking early in the day, and "sobered up" while awake. I can't really put my finger on why, but I didn't enjoy it at all.

So I voted no.
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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby Tomlidich the second » Wed May 01, 2013 11:58 pm UTC

i think the next hurdle would be the higher statistical chance of injuries or early death.

since you are awake and active for more hours, presumably, you would be exposed to more dangerous situations than the average human being, for example, crossing a street, using an electric toaster, going for a swim, etc.

im not sure how it would effect the biology either, running at an active state for more hours of the day might wear down essential organs faster, but if the pill reversed that then maybe not a problem? i don't know for sure.
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Koyaanisqatsi
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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby Koyaanisqatsi » Sat May 04, 2013 10:09 am UTC

You know, awake and asleep are a spectrum, really. Once, I was mostly asleep, but I didn't think I was, I thought I was mostly awake, and I could remember my dream clearly, and I thought, "Ha, I'll remember it easy when I wake up." When I woke up, I couldn't remember it at all. Sometimes I close my eyes and see pictures just like dreams, and I can figure out just where they came from.

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AYC
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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby AYC » Sat Jun 08, 2013 6:35 am UTC

Since I go into the late hours of the night posting on the Internet and watching/reading stuff as it is, yeah, no sleep would be nice.

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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby Djehutynakht » Sun Jun 09, 2013 1:45 am UTC

I'd like the option of sleep (especially with dreaming), but the ability to not need it should I be too busy/interested in other things is appealing. So I'll say yes.

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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby flickering_candle » Thu Jun 27, 2013 6:34 am UTC

While I certainly would love the ability to remove the dependency on sleep, I wouldn't want to lose it entirely. Sleep provides benefits (as opposed to not sleeping providing penalties such as tiredness and hallucinations) that a simple removal of penalties would not replace. These include a host of restorative functions for the body, and while some of these are performed during periods of simple rest (i.e., without sleep), many are not. Various hormones are replaced during sleep, as are proteins linked to the immune system, and REM sleep is believed to help consolidate memory and emotional experiences. This is in addition to all the experiential aspects of sleep, such as dreaming, falling asleep with an SO, or coming up with a brilliant idea on the edge of sleep (sometimes happens at other times, but my best track record is still at the edge of sleep).

Some of my coworkers only need four hours of sleep a night. If a pill came up to reduce the average from eight hours to four, I might take that, however, because those 'lost' hours during sleep do seem unfortunate...

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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby scribbler » Thu Jun 27, 2013 11:34 am UTC

Sheikh al-Majaneen wrote:This sounds like a dream for people who specifically make money off the labor of others. Give it to your employees, give it to your customers, watch the profits increase hugely.

It would be a nightmare, as its normalization would exclusively come from its service to productivity and the economy. Don't sleep, your country needs you!


I was going to say "definitely yes", but I find myself agreeing with this.

More time to play with would be good, spending the extra time working would be terrible.

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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby Vash » Thu Jun 27, 2013 1:24 pm UTC

I had terrible sleep for so long that I honestly just hate the idea of not sleeping. I also just don't think it's possible for this pill to exist. Mainly though, the idea of having one, uninterrupted day straight up scares me, especially since I've experienced this for periods of time and had severe negative symptoms as a result. I want to say that in an abstract sense I would take this pill if it existed, but the idea scares me so much that I can't really say that I would. Also, the golden standard of safety tests would be in a 100-year study.

I think the fact that people fantasize about pills that make it so they never have to sleep says a lot about how misguided our ideas of sleep are. We're spending time on faraway fantasies and disregarding our actual current health and productivity.

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Re: Poll: Pill to eliminate the need for sleep

Postby lalop » Wed Jul 17, 2013 7:46 pm UTC

Well, one thing's for sure: the girl from 50 first dates would take it.


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