Bid to use app to sweeten dreams
A psychologist plans to sweeten people's dreams using their smartphones.
Professor Richard Wiseman expects thousands of people to take part in an experiment in manipulating dreams.
Participants will download a specially designed iPhone app that turns their phone in to a dream factory. Placed on the bed, the phone can detect when a sleeper is not moving, which signifies the onset of dreaming.
It then plays a carefully crafted "soundscape" designed to evoke pleasant scenes such as walking in woods, or lying on a beach. The idea is that this will influence dreaming, causing dreamers to conjure up situations and experiences inspired by the sounds they are hearing.
At the end of the dream the app sounds a gentle alarm to wake the dreamer, who submits a brief description of the dream to a "dream catcher" database.
Prof Wiseman, from the University of Hertfordshire, who is best known for his work on the paranormal, said: "Getting a good night's sleep and having pleasant dreams boosts people's productivity, and is essential for their psychological and physical well being.
"Despite this, we know very little about how to influence dreams. This experiment aims to change that."
As many as 10,000 people are expected to take part in the mass-participation study, launched at the Edinburgh International Science Festival. Prof Wiseman teamed up with app developers YUZA, which created the Dream:ON software.
Participants will be encouraged to share their dreams via Facebook and Twitter.
The Dream:ON app can be downloaded for free from iTunes or via the project site, http://dreamonapp.com.
- Jewish businesswoman Sam Caldicott slams anti-HS2 group for 'disgusting' video
- UKIP leader Nigel Farage at Staffordshire HS2 protest meeting
- Anti-HS2 campaigners take cherry picker to Stockwell Heath to highlight the peak of the problem
- Stafford Hospital trust board's fury at 'disgraceful' report
- Stafford Borough Conservatives to propose resolution against HS2
- Stafford MP Jeremy Lefroy calls for an end to 'hospital bitterness' after incidents mar peaceful protest