More Sci-Fi Technology in Daily Life: Suspended Consciousness

OK, so I’m watching the utterly horrible remake of Lost in Space. You know- with that smart-ass pubescent girl, that annoying little CGI alien, and Joey Tribianni as a cockey pilot. This movie and several other recent Sci-Fi movies make use of an interesting fictitous technology. For the long journey through space, the travelers are rendered into a state of suspended consciousness. That is, they’re alive, but they’re in an artificially-induced and fully-reversible coma.

So, how far off is this technology from daily life? How conceivable is it that we can be rendered unconscious at the flick of a switch, and then brought back with the flick of another switch?

Imagine the possibilities! That 14-hour flight from Los Angeles to Tokyo could only last a few minutes (at least, in your conscious mind). You simply program your little gizmo to wake you up in 13 hours and 55 minutes, hit the button, and you’re comatose.

Insomniacs (like me) can throw away their melatonin; all I have to do now is flick a switch and I’m guaranteed 8 hours of sleep!

Parents- do you dread those long drives to Grandma’s house with noisy children in the back seat? All you have to do is turn them off! Literally!

So, is this technology possible, even in theory?

Sure, I do that all the time. I get on the plane at ORD, pop an actifed tab and drink some alcohol at dinner, and I wake up at Narita. Sure beats watching the inflight movies.

Anyway, I have heard about electromagnetically induced sleep, but it was just experimental. I’m sure as hell not going to let anyone bombard my brain with EM energy.