May 14, 1999 One of the factors I have researched using Plato is my dreams. About 3 years ago, I mastered the technique of lucid dreaming. I can control not only what I dream about but I can control and direct the dream while I am in it. I have conjured up people or computers and posed questions to them and had dialogs about complex issues. When I wake up, I try to remember and save the same logic. Most often I talk to HAL, which is my mental combination of the computer on the 2001 Space Odyssey movie and the one on Star Trek. It was actually pretty spooky when I saw episodes on the new Star Trek that were remarkably similar to my controlled dreams. Way before Geordi or Data did their things on the Holodeck, I had my own holodeck of sorts, in my mind. What I believe I am doing is taping into using more of my brain than I can while I am awake. I almost always arrive at an answer but I am not always able to remember everything I did or how to relate it once I am awake. I have also discovered that I have an incredible ability to see into my own body. I have “traveled” inside my body and seen a cut in the skin from the inside. I “knew” that I had a cholesterol problem before I had a measurement made because I had “seen” it. Actually pretty gross, yuck. What I am working on now is a modification of the BEAM (Brain Electromagnetic wave Analysis Monitor) to get a direct link between body and computer. It sounds wild but I have designed it several times in my dreams. The current technology can easily get wave patterns from a variety of machines (electroencephalogram, electromyogram, electroculorgram, and others). I have focused on the stage 3 or delta sleep phase because delta waves are slow and strong so they are easy to work with. At issue is the assignment of intelligence to these waves. We know, for instance that a sound wave pattern represents a sound that can be heard. Television crews will tell you that a similar looking pattern on an oscilloscope is a particular TV pattern or image. It is just that we do not know how to assign the relationship to the delta wave pattern. I think I know how. I have already gotten it to respond to binary queries such as yes/no, 1/2, true/false and on/off. Now I am working on the shades between these two. Last week I was able to make a brainwave choice among five menu items! I thing I will be able to relate the alphabet and numbers if I keep at it. The mechanism is a simple EEG that I got at a surplus auction and a very sensitive A‑to‑D (analog‑to‑digital) interface to the computer. The program lets me interpret the 3 to 14 hertz waves that are being detected. I put in a programmed band‑pass filter to cut off above 5 Hz to limit the response to delta waves for my at‑sleep experiments and to cutoff below 8 Hz to get alpha waves for my awake experiments. These are the two easiest to detect. I started out by coding the program to respond with a specific answer when it detected a wave of a specific freq and amplitude. Since this was a simple discrimination of above or below a certain wave pattern, it was easy to detect. I simply changed my thoughts until I achieved the pattern that made the right signal. Awake, relaxed was yes and think hard was a no. Then I started making sweeps while recording, mentally what I was dreaming. This allowed me to discover that a concentrated thought of “yes” was a specific pattern different than a concentrated thought of “no”. I set these two patterns into the program and voila! Brainwave responses. The pattern recognition algorithm is adopted from the acoustic pattern recognition software that the Navy uses for identifying a submarine’s sonar “signature”. This is a very well developed algorithm and is used in a number of other areas of science. I obtained that algorithm as a math model and adopted it to my A‑to‑D interface.
The discovery of what a pattern looks like as compared with what I am thinking continues. I believe that just like in language development, I will be able to soon join these individual images and brain patterns into “sentences” of computer recognizable images. At first the images will be discrete letters and numbers, then words. Once I get to words and can link them into real word sentences, it is an easy matter to relate the word phrases to images. Using a neural or expert system and an image generator, I can now imagine how animated figures and scenes can be “thought up”.
This lucid dreaming stuff is really a kick, you ought to try it!