Do You See What You Think You Are Seeing?

Probably every introductory psychology and philosophy class in the world, and each for different purposes, capitalizes on the wonder of optical illusions. In philosophy we have a tendency to use these perceptual wonders to challenge our notions of reality and our ability to know the world, but we also attempt to understand how the mind works by trying to decipher how the brain manages to processes perceptual information.

As you watch anything on the screen of this blog (hopefully daily!) you are working under the assumption that you are observing the entire range of colors in the visual spectrum, from red to violet. In fact, however, all you are watching is three discreet colors. You don't believe me? Let's test out this claim. The following video is interactive, so before you watch it, you should get a glass of water and have it ready.



I bet you are also working under the assumption that you see motion whenever you watch any of the videos posted here... Maybe I'll challenge that assumption in a future entry, but think about it...
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