October 22, 2018
I am generally less of a watch person and more of a ring person. Ever since getting my first fitness tracker, I’ve been interested in quantifying those metrics: sleep, calorie and step counts, etc. I write all this to say I think for me, the long term vision for fitness tracking will be a ring, not a watch. The Oura Ring is awesome tech and the company’s articles about sleep and overall health are always worth a read.
Since the advent of electric light, we’ve increasingly ignored and misunderstood sleep: It’s a necessary evil. It’s an inactive state. It’s the human stand-by mode. Why sleep when you could watch just one more episode on Netflix or go to Mars? However, with advances in science and technology, and a budding revolution in attitudes towards sleep, we may be ready to throw these ideas into the dustbin of history and embrace a non-binary view on human existence and see that there is no ON/OFF for us. Rather, there are three stages of being that are inextricably intertwined, each one affecting the others: Awake, Asleep, Dreaming.
These three states of being are found in nearly all mammals and birds: wakefulness, Non-REM sleep and REM sleep. From a physiological viewpoint they are as different from each other as sleeping is from being wide awake. You just don’t notice it — mainly because you’re asleep.