Hypnotizing software use is on the rise

Kimmy Kirkwood, senior graphic design and advertising student, spent more nights in the graphic design lab on campus than in the comfort of her own home this spring semester.

Working on several school-related projects, including a campaign book for the National Student Advertising Competition, Kirkwood would go for days without a full night’s rest or any sleep at all. It was then when she was convinced by classmate Jon-Michael Herrmann to try Pzizz, a software application for both Mac and PC computers that creates audio soundtracks whichhelp the user nap during the day or get to sleep at night, according to its official website.

“I thought it sounded hokey,” said Kirkwood. “Things like that often don’t work for me. When they tell me to think of something peaceful, I think of the opposite. It’s really annoying.”

The Pzizz relaxation technique is slowly proving itself worthy of trying to sleepless, graphic design and advertising students despite its skeptical hypnosis theory. Like Kirkwood, who leaned on energy drinks and coffee to fuel her tired body, these busy students who need to stay up for over 24 hours straight are desperate for another solution. According to Herrmann, during the twenty minutes listening to the sound waves of the Pzizz application, the listener falls into a deep relaxation. Upon the end of the track, the listener wakes up, feeling as if they had a full night’s rest even though they were never asleep. Pzizz offers a healthier solution though its success varies among users.

“It really does work,” said Herrmann, senior advertising student who started the Pzizz trend among the graphic design and advertising students. “It’s incredible. It doesn’t always put me to sleep as much as puts me in a state of meditation to recoup my energy.”

Herrmann, who never took naps during the day, realized that he needed to do so in order to stay awake late at night. He found Pzizz at the App Store for his iPhone and the reviews told him that it would help him out. Originally a coffee drinker, Herrmann has converted to just using the app because he doesn’t like ingesting mass amounts of caffeine.

After seeing Pzizz’ success on others, including Herrmann and Kirkwood, fellow junior graphic design majors Simon Blockley and Kate Eglen decided to give it a try.

“I was laying on the floor of a very bright room [in the graphic design lab] with a blanket covering my face,” said Blockley. “I was unnecessarily hot and uncomfortable which didn’t help.”

With almost 20 straight hours of working on her graphic design projects, Eglen was motivated to try Pzizz.

“I was energized for a while,” said Eglen, “but I was so tired, nothing could keep me awake.”

Although the app didn’t work entirely for Blockley and Eglen, they still recommend it to other people. If anything, it will give them a 20-minute rest, says Blockley.

However, not everyone finds Pzizz harmless For Brian Chandra, a junior communications major who worked on the National Student Advertising Competition with Kirkwood, Blockley and Eglen, his one-time use was enough to make him not want to try it again.

“It worked,” said Chandra, “but I keep thinking that it’s proof that we’re one step closer to someone controlling our minds. One day whoever controls Pzizz will turn a switch and we’ll all be zombie-like under his command.”

Although it’s not for everybody, Pzizz is slowly becoming a staple for staying awake among students. To try it would seem harmless unless you have a fear of becoming a zombie.

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