In space no one can hear you snore: Alien facehugger CPAP mask

Author and science fiction fan Jared Gray needed a CPAP machine to treat his sleep apnea so he decided to have some maker fun with the machine. So he carved out a foam replica Aliens Facehugger to integrate his CPAP mask.

"I’m happy with it as a prototype, but I think it would need additional refinement before I started making these things for other people," Gray says."Other than making it even less comfortable to lay on my side, it’s not all that much worse than just wearing the CPAP mask on its own. I could probably sleep with this thing on, at least for a couple hours. If nothing else, it helps keep the light out of my eyes."

CPAP Facehugger (via Laughing Squid)

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Noise-cancelling pillow for bedmates of people who snore

Northern Illinois University researchers have designed a noise-cancelling pillow for people who sleep near loud snorers. It works using the same principle as noise-cancelling headphones but with an adaptive algorithm that changes with the snore. Noise-cancelling headboards have been available for some time, but according to electrical engineering professor Lichuan Liu who led this new research, they're bulky and limited in their efficacy because the "quiet zone" isn't right near the sleeper's ears. From IEEE Spectrum:

(The new approach) involves an adaptive filter that receives two input signals—snoring signals, which are detected by a reference microphone, and residual noise (errors), which are detected by two error microphones. Based on these inputs, the adaptive filter then generates the appropriate antinoise signal, which is emitted by two speakers within the partner’s pillow.

What’s more, conventional noise-canceling systems for snoring have relied on least mean square (LMS) algorithms to generate antinoise. Here, Liu and her colleagues used an adaptive LMS algorithm.

“Since each snorer’s snore signals have their unique time-frequency characteristics, it is essential to design an adaptive LMS algorithm for the best cancellation performance for different snore signals,” says Liu. Thanks to the adaptive LMS, the filter in this system can adjust to the length of an individual’s unique snore, and respond to subtle changes in its acoustic characteristics...

Moving forward, Liu and her colleagues plan to use machine learning techniques to recognize the snore signals that are indicative of sleep disorders, for better screening and monitoring purposes.

"Ear field adaptive noise control for snoring: a real-time experimental approach" (IEEE/CAA Journal of Automatica Sinica) Read the rest

This surgeon says snoring is a voluntary habit and can be cured by singing God Save the Queen with your tongue poked out

People snore because they've lost throat muscle tone, says Dr. Mike Dilkes, an ear, nose and throat surgeon in London. In an interview with CBC, he offers an exercise to rebuild your throat muscles:

MD: There's a quick [exercise] you can do: Opening your mouth as wide as you can. Poking your tongue out as far as it'll go, so it hurts. You got to really strain your tongue out. Then you touch tip of your nose with your tongue. Then go south and touch your chin with your tongue. Then go side to side as far as you can. Then, as you're doing this, in a loud voice, sing something familiar like your national anthem.

CO: So if someone does this workout, four or five minutes a day, they'll stop snoring?

MD: If there's no other mechanical obstruction i.e. it's just an age-related problem, then yes — this is a good treatment.

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Tiny anti-snoring gadget for people with sleep apnea looks promising

If this little gadget called Airing really does prevent obstructive sleep apnea, then it's a big deal. The Indiegogo-funded project is described as the first hoseless, maskless, micro-CPAP. Read the rest

The cool science behind a really cute video of a "snoring" hummingbird

You can learn a lot about this bird's biology by listening as it saws some logs.