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You don't necessarily need to get a lot more sleep to be more alert, more productive. If you could just turn out the lights 36 minutes earlier than you usually do, a new study from UC-San Francisco suggests you'll increase your cognitive abilities. That is, increase the speed at which your brain processes information.
And after the dog kept us up half the night with ... something (he needed to go out a lot), I can see where the extra cognitive function could come in handy.