Some Thoughts

So this blog is getting updated a little more frequently – hopefully, you are finding some useful tips. At this stage, I’m still a mere squidling (undergraduate), so you’re getting a lot of redirects to other awesome things instead of novel ideas, but that’s how life works. Hopefully I’m guiding you to the right places.

My elbow is healing up gradually – I can rotate my wrist almost entirely and my arm can almost straighten. Twisting my arm remains difficult. The progress is promising, but I still can’t lift more than two pounds. Perhaps in two weeks I can meet up with deCycles in Lexington and finish the last 3 days of the ride.

It’s not too bad being back in Bloomington. This weekend I started earnest work on the paper for InPhO. Right now I’m articulating how AI should be used to augment human feedback, without superseding it. I’ve also been working on some user interfaces and came across a really good Google Tech Talk, “Don’t Make Me Click“. Aza Raskin does a great job of emphasizing the importance of minimalist design and of doing as much as possible for your users. I found it worth the hour.

I’ve also been researching polyphasic sleep. Basically instead of sleeping 8 hours in a row, you have a shorter period of “core sleep” and then take 20 minute naps throughout the day. There are variations ranging from 6 hours of core sleep with a 30 minute nap in the day (Biphasic) to no core sleep and 6 20 minute naps throughout the day (Uberman) and a bunch of middle ground (Everyman). The less extreme versions are more pretentious ways of explaining what people do anyways, but the uberman concept is a fascinating extreme. Steve Pavlina has an interesting journal on adopting the uberman (day 30) (day 120) (going back). My roommate seems to have accidentally adopted the everyman system last year.

This month, I’m going to adopt biphasic sleep as my “thing” (although it seems this is how I naturally react to the school year). My only concern with adopting a true polyphasic sleep schedule is physical activity. No reports seem to have a regular exercise routine, and with 150+ miles of biking per week, I think core sleep may play a larger role in muscle recovery. For more findings on sleep, monitor my sleep tag on Delicious.

Some (public domain) visualizations of sleep patterns from Wikipedia:

4 thoughts on “Some Thoughts

  1. Carlo

    It wasn't quite unintentional, though it wasn't an intentionally quasi-polyphasic sleep thing, either. It's just how I roll.

  2. taruntribulations

    In principle it makes some sense, biphasic seems to be like people in Mexico or other countries that take a nap in the middle of the day and go tutoring at night or something. So long as you get those sleep cycles in, it should be fine.

  3. Jaimie

    Tarun: In fact, Dustin Curtis refers to biphasic sleep as The Siesta in his overview article, which is linked above.

  4. Skishua

    After reading this, I've been doing a lot of research on polyphasic schedules, and I'm quite interested in trying out the Uberman for a semester, pretentious as it may be.

    As for your concern regarding physical activity: one log I read reported losing 10 pounds within the first month, but this was simply because their eating schedule was screwed up. Another account I read mentioned that they wouldn't recommend the Uberman to anyone growing / pregnant / ill. If you group "muscle developement" under "growing," then maybe the fully polyphasic schedule isn't the best for bulking up.

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