Thursday, October 11, 2007

Left Brain vs. Right Brain

I struggled with this at first. The picture below appears to be spinning which way to you? Left or right? Ok. That was the easy part. Now convince ourself it is turning the other way. Really, go ahead an try.

Trust me on this...you can convince yourself it is spinning the other way, and when you do, it is hard to get back to your first way of perceiving it. If you are having trouble, focus a few inches away from the image and give it a moment or two in you peripheral vision. For me, I was convinced it was turning to the left (clockwise). I focused on a point a few inches to the left of my laptop screen and willed it to turn right...30 seconds later...it worked.

I'm not a huge fan of optical illusions, but I like being able to convince myself to perceive something in a completely different fashion. Way cool when you make it happen. Try it.



Via kottke. & The Herald Sun

It appears that if you defaulted to clockwise, you are more right brained then left...which I think fits for me.

7 comments:

SINEDDIE said...

clockwise...

rc said...

I am totally freaked out by this. In fact, I am still not conviced it didn't just change the image 1/2 way to screw w/ me...still not sure...

the whiskey said...

I don't think that's an optical illusion. I think the animation of that image changes to the opposite direction. I was watching to see the exact moment when the image moves different, and it's not the way I'm perceiving it. I'm convinced that it really has switched and that this is just a joke/prank.

the whisky said...

Watch on part of that figure, like the anchor foot. If you focus on it, you can see that it's direction really does change and that it's not just a perception thing. I think if you look at it through your peripheral vision you're more likely to think of it as an illusion because you can't pin point what switched and you think it must just be in your mind.

wilablog said...

There is a big debate about this on the paper's website actually. I am not sure what the truth is...hmmm.

Carlee said...

so if two people looked at it at the same time and got it to spin 2 different ways, does that invalidate whiskey's theory?

i'm with rc. i keep coming back for more because my mind is freaked out.

wilablog said...

"so if two people looked at it at the same time and got it to spin 2 different ways, does that invalidate whiskey's theory? "

This argument is actually presented on the paper's website as well.

The true way to figure it out is to have software that will allow you to look at the properties of this animated gif and see what the image frames are doing. Some comments on the paper's website indicate that people are doing so. I have a feeling that there are those of us (whiskey, me, carlee, etc) who might like to see the proof themselves.