Is there such thing as a perfect amount of caffeine or even a perfect time to consume it? For most, the answers are, “all of it” and “ASAP.” But for the US Government, that lacks the sort of cold, analytic minutiae that really greases the wheels of bureaucracy. But Hermes Conrads of the world, fear not! For the government has created an algorithm to tell you exactly how much caffeine and when to consume it for peak alertness.
According Science Daily, the new coffee maths first appeared in the American Academy for Sleep Medicine are the work of Jacques Reifman, Ph.D, a “senior research scientist and director of [the Department of Defense’s] Biotechnology High Performance Computing Software Applications Institute and the Telemedicine and Advanced Technology Research Center at the U.S. Army Medical Research and Materiel Command in Ft. Detrick, Maryland.” The algorithm was created specifically increase alertness in “sleep loss conditions.” It is based upon testing using “four previously published experimental studies on sleep loss” and predicted effects of caffeine on psychomotor vigilance task performance. Fully automated, the algorithm will take “user-provided sleep/wake schedule and maximum allowed caffeine as inputs and provides a caffeine-dosing strategy as the output.”
While the actual algorithm has yet to be made public, Dr. Reifman states that using the algorithm can “can improve alertness by up to 64 percent, while consuming the same total amount of caffeine,” as well as allow a subject to “reduce caffeine consumption by up to 65 percent and still achieve equivalent improvements in alertness.”
This all kinda sounds like the movie Toys, but for coffee, trying to use regulated caffeine dosing to make some sort of super soldier. So instead of sitting idly by while the government tries to weaponize coffee, I’m releasing my own caffeine algorithm, which is free for all to use. I call it “Dr. Zac’s 100% Feel Good Coffee Algorithm For Optimal Caffeine Consumption,” and it’s quite simple. Just remember: (n+1)*t, where n represents the number of cups of coffee you’ve already consumed and t represents the current time of day (in hours, military time). If the answer is a number, any number, then it’s the perfect time to have another cup of coffee. Yay math!
Zac Cadwalader is the news editor at Sprudge Media Network and a staff writer based in Dallas. Read more Zac Cadwalader on Sprudge.