Jan 4, 2009

Walter’s EEG machine 101 & 109

Fringe - 101 Pilot | Fringe - 109 The Dreamscape | Walter's Lab Notes | Posted by Scully

In Walter’s lab notes for the “Pilot” episode, there was a diagram, that I presumed to be a rough sketch of the lab.  It looks like it could be the lab with the layout of all the equipment, and Walter’s comments pushed me to that faulty assumption.

“It gives me so much joy to turn the lights on and off at my own whim — and to resume the explorations I began so long ago, in this very laboratory.  The ratio of floor dimensions is the key.  How can I be expected to make true progress without understanding the properties of my space?”

fringe

Then the diagram appeared again in Walter’s lab notes for Episode 109 “The Dreamscape”.  Again, I didn’t give it much thought since it seemed to be the same diagram as before.  But I recently came across an image of Walter’s lab in model form (from the previous post), and I was very surprised at what I realized.  It’s NOT a diagram of the lab at all !!!

Here is the diagram…click image to view full size

Walter's diagram

Walter's diagram 101

fringe

Now it has occurred to me that this diagram appears in Walter’s notes for the exact same two episodes that Olivia went into the tank to connect with John Scott’s memories.  Coincidence?  I think not.  I believe it is a diagram of the device that Walter uses to connect John Scott and Olivia together.

fringe

You can see the symbols for Theta, Delta, Beta and Alpha in Walter’s handwriting.  After some serious Googling, what I found is that these are four of the five brain signal frequencies.

fringe

Delta:
is the frequency range up to 3 Hz. It tends to be the highest in amplitude and the slowest waves. It is seen normally in adults in slow wave sleep.

Theta:
is the frequency range from 4 Hz to 7 Hz. Theta is seen normally in young children. It may be seen in drowsiness or arousal in older children and adults.

Alpha:
is the frequency range from 8 Hz to 12 Hz. It is seen in the posterior regions of the head on both sides, being higher in amplitude on the dominant side. It is brought out by closing the eyes and by relaxation. It was noted to attenuate with eye opening or mental exertion.

Beta:
is the frequency range from 12 Hz to about 30 Hz. It is seen usually on both sides in symmetrical distribution and is most evident frontally. Low amplitude beta with multiple and varying frequencies is often associated with active, busy or anxious thinking and active concentration. Rhythmic beta with a dominant set of frequencies is associated with various pathologies and drug effects, especially benzodiazepines.

fringe

Beta and Alpha are the two frequencies highest in amplitude, therefore most associated with deep relaxation and active concentration, and these are the ones that connect directly to the brains of the male and female images in the diagram.  I am not an engineer, but I think some of the items drawn are definitely electrical symbols.  The fifth one is Gamma, but it’s not on the diagram (most likely because it’s extremely high amplitudes make it difficult to measure through the skull).

fringe

As for the diagram from 109, at first glance, it appeared to be exactly the same as the first one.  Again, I was wrong.  On the right hand side, where the ‘Vitruvian Man’ was in the original…is now the ‘Vitruvian Man’ head is on the ‘Venus’ body…click image to view full size

Walter's diagram 109

fringe

What the fringe is that about?  I suppose it represents the fact that John’s mind is inside Olivia’s head.  Simple but elegant.

I am sure others figured this out already, but it was quite a surprise to me.  That will teach me for not paying attention.  Lesson learned.

Share:
  • TwitThis
  • Facebook
  • del.icio.us
  • Google
  • Digg

One Response to “Walter’s EEG machine 101 & 109”

  1. pr3sidentspence

    In the typed notes he discusses how he’s never hooked someone up to their own mind before. In the first one he hooks up venus to the vitruvian man, in the second he hooks venus up to herself.

Leave a Reply