In history, people have not always need to wake up at a specific time. They just had to get up early enough to do their work before the day is over. A farmer, for example had no boss to give it a start time of the day, when he knew he had to milk the cows, that’s all. This mode of work, and life, has changed with the Industrial Revolution.

The first generation of factory workers had been instructed by their employers to the importance of time ” wrote the historian of labor E. P. Thompson, in his essential text Time, labor discipline and industrial capitalism (1967). A plant must operate at specific times to be effective and profitable. So it is natural that industrial owners had to implement measures to ensure the presence of their employees in the early hours of the morning.

Whistling and “knockers-ups”

How can that they are awake in time? Several means were then tested. For example, there were shrill whistles to wake the workers who lived nearby. These whistles also marked the beginning and end rotations. In England the people, “ knockers-ups “, were tasked to come knocking on windows to wake people up in order to be on time to work.

It was not until 1876 that the Seth Thomas Clock Company patented the first alarm clock of history, who were more than expected invention at the time . The alarm clock is always the one that throws us every morning, even though it hardly resembles the production schedules of the time. Yet whatever the job, we must now begin work “on time”. “ The way in which we must awaken is closer to that of the workers of the 19th century that of our ancestors peasants ,” says Slate.

Promises of a gentle awakening

Being woken up artificially, and sometimes brutally out of sleep, however, is not ideal. Less difficult revivals might come from technological advances.

There are, for example, connected bracelets that monitor sleep cycles and wake the owner smoothly by emitting vibrations. There are also programs like Sleeprate , which analyze sleep patterns, heart rate and promise a better night hygiene and less brutal morning, or applications that force us to sleep we do not like Mathe Alarm Clock that requires solve mathematical problems before turning off the alarm.

All these technological innovations are going in the same direction and want to serve a common purpose: to bring us back to a more natural wake, simpler and less brutal.