back to article Scientists identify sleep-like slow waves as responsible for daydreaming and... sorry, what were we talking about again?

Neuroscientists have developed a method for predicting when your mind might go blank or completely forget whatever it was we were talking about. Slow waves, a pattern of neural activity commonly associated with the transition to sleep, could be a good prediction of that unedifying moment in a meeting when you've forgotten the …

  1. AndrueC Silver badge

    You mean I'm dreaming about Visual Studio during the day? That's more like a waking nightmare.

    1. Dan 55 Silver badge

      But... what happens when you go to sleep and all you see Visual SourceSafe?

  2. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge
    Paris Hilton

    Paris Brain Institute

    >> Honorary President

  3. Inventor of the Marmite Laser

    "applications leveraging brain-machine interfaces"

    It's USING brain-machine interfaces.

    Pretentious twirp.

  4. Danny 2 Silver badge

    Dreaming in pieces

    I just watched a good documentary on sleep by NOVA. Sorry, don't know where you'd find that It points out that many creatures, such as dolphins, sleep by turning off half their brain hemispheres at a time, with the other half staying awake for things like breathing and not getting eaten. It mentioned a 1960s (probably?) case of a man who never slept (sorry, don't remember his name), and brain scans showed that tiny little parts of his brain turned off in sequence.

    I can fact check this if/when anyone challenges it - in my defence it was very late at night and basically only one eye and ear were awake. I didn't dream it. I'd like to tell you all about what I did dream but I know that is about the most repulsive thing you can repeat.

  5. Claptrap314 Silver badge


    What was I going to post?

  6. Denarius Silver badge


    long dull pointless meetings in hot room with near strangers wasting time. My eyes open, mind blank with a background process greping the droning input stream for a key word to trigger attention, memory and output if required. Common experience ?

    1. FozzyBear

      Re: familiar

      Add in the monotone droning of my manager and Im living the same waking nightmare

    2. lglethal Silver badge

      Re: familiar

      I regularly suffer the same problems in long tedious meetings, but it's always surprised me. I mean I'm absolutely certain that if I tried to fall asleep in a hot and stuffy airless room whilst sitting in an uncomfortable position, I'd have no chance. Add in talking (even in a monotone drone), and I'd have even less chance of falling asleep or dozing.

      So what is it about Meeting rooms that switch off your brain almost as soon as you sit down???

      1. Denarius Silver badge

        Re: familiar

        I suspect conditioned reflex for us over 40. Never have I ever been alerted, stimulated or even interested in anything going by in the droning. In real world as volunteer at disaster sites, strangely, the incident manager and team leader always have my full attention. Wonder if there is a difference the PHBs have missed?

        1. bombastic bob Silver badge

          Re: familiar

          Wonder if there is a difference the PHBs have missed?

          * Uniqueness of the situation

          * NOT self-serving (iike a PHB meeting PROBABLY is)

          * Necessary (to brief everyone on certain specifics)

          * Interesting (you actually want to know about the disaster)

          the boredom that initiates the partial sleep state is most likely caused by the lack of "those things".

          In particular, PHB meeting PROBABLY is a same-old self-serving unnecessary uninteresting series of pontifications by droning speakers that seem to like their own voices too much.

          Result: *yawn*

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: familiar

        It might not be the meeting room that has that effect, but the meeting... the feeling that nothing useful will come of it, and that it's a waste of time, and you'd rather be getting on with actually doing whatever the meeting is about, and that if you need to discuss something with someone, that someone probably doesn't have to be everyone in the meeting (particularly, it doesn't have to be the less-technical person who convened the meeting), and the details that two or three of the people in the meeting are discussing for half an hour is in a part of the project so far from what you're doing that you don't really know what they're on about (because, with minimal need for meetings about it, engineers tend to modularize things) ... I could drone on further but perhaps I've made my point about droning on by now...

      3. This post has been deleted by its author

    3. Fred Daggy

      Re: familiar

      This happened to me at High Cchool, and University, and continues to this very day.

      I am a reading type person, but voices (alone) I cannot fix on. Music, no problem, nor an active combination of voices and visual stimulation. Powerpoint does not count. Just finished a 2 hour Teams call. I know I spoke. I can neither remember anything that was said nor what I said. However, the meeting notes will make perfect sense when they come out. On the other hand, did manage to make progress on another work related problem, because otherwise I would have fallen asleep after 15 minutes.

    4. Boothy Silver badge

      Re: familiar

      "Sorry, I didn't quite catch that, could you repeat the question?"

  7. Will Godfrey Silver badge


    I get the same experience just ambling around home sometimes.

  8. Dr Scrum Master


    that unedifying moment in a meeting when you've forgotten the name of the person you're talking to

    That would be the moment immediately after I'm introduced to someone.

    1. John Sturdy

      Re: Who?

      All those times I've been trying to read a colleague's name badge without looking like I'm staring at whatever part of their anatomy it's nearest to...

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: ... staring at ...

        ... this reminds me that I should really stop attaching my name badge to the front of my trousers, it's making me uncomfortable.

        1. AndrueC Silver badge
  9. Mike 16 Silver badge

    Well Rested

    I, for one, would like to know how they created well rested individuals in this day and age.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Much like a a recent comment to the wife that didn't really go down too well.

    "Would you mind repeating everything you've ever said to me. I must have drifted off sometime"

    1. This post has been deleted by its author

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