Wednesday, July 20, 2011

[Fudgy Science Episode 001] (FSE 001)

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Observational study of how much I talk and how well it comes across vs. how awake I am.

Note that everything is normalized to the value when I'm fully awake, which gives no indication to the absolute quantity.

And there is a "golden zone" when I'm approximately 70% to 90% awake, such that I maintain about the same level of cogency but get more words out. This is when I'm less inhibited than when I'm fully awake. As in my think-it-through vs. just-say-it ratio is tipped toward the latter... in situations where I need to get my points across to a bunch of people, this is often helpful. Which leads me to think that in high-stakes presentations, perhaps one drink ~10 minutes before might just do the trick... or not! I haven't found a consistent algorithm to reach this state yet :-(

My least favorite zone is the ~40% to ~60% awake zone, i.e. the I-don't-feel-like-talking-so-get-the-f***-away zone. I would usually retreat to napping/ sleeping/ pretending to work by typing furiously when this happens.

The "wasted zone" of about 20% to 40% awake usually happens when I average < 5 hours sleep for about a week, after I finish the project in question, when I'm in familiar company. I tend not to recall what I say here. Sometimes I reach this stage in my regular sleep, when I would dream that I'm giving a lecture about some (often technical) topic and proceed to dream-talk, the content of which makes little sense in actuality.

This is what I think an extrovert's graph looks like -

The cogency curve is probably still monotonic, but the verbal flux curve is consistently high even when the person is about 30% awake. And there is a slight tendency for the amount of talking to increase when the person is less awake but not completely comatose.

This in part explains my angst during most of my middle-to- high-school-to- undergrad life, because I was in that Valley of Stupor most of the time. Figures.

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