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Illusion Chasers

Illusion Chasers

Illusions, Delusions, and Everyday Deceptions
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    We are brain researchers who study the brain using illusions and magic—where reality is misaligned to how we see, think and feel – in addition to well-established neuroscience methods. Twitter: @SMartinezConde & @Stephen_Macknik. Web: Follow on Twitter @illusionchasers.
  • Illusion of the Week: OK Go’s New Illusion Video

    pink paint

    Music videos by the alternative rock band OK Go are nothing if not creative. Their previous video “Here It Goes Again” featuring treadmill dancing was mesmerizing, and their newest video, “The Writing’s on the Wall”, is even more compelling, especially for those of us interested in matters of perception.

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    Dali masterpieces were inspired by Scientific American


    Spanish surrealist painter Salvador Dali was a reader of Scientific American, and created one of his most iconic pieces based on a Scientific American article on face perception.

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    Youngest kids are bigger than their parents think

    Recent research published in Current Biology indicates that human parents are subject to a previously unknown “baby illusion” that makes them misperceive their youngest child as smaller than he or she is, regardless of age.

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    The Winners of the 2014 Best Illusion of the Year Contest


    Expanding and contracting circles, mutating colors, and false image matches dominated the 2014 Best Illusion of the Year Contest, held on May 18th in the TradeWinds Island Grand in St. Petersburg, FL. One thousand perceptual scientists joined artists and the general public to determine the TOP THREE illusion masters from a pre-selected group of TOP TEN finalists, chosen by an international committee of judges. Each winner took home a trophy designed by the acclaimed Italian sculptor Guido Moretti: the trophies are visual illusions themselves.

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    Transcending Our Origins–Violence, Humanity, and the Future


    Attend the ASU Origins Project Great Debate event, Transcending Our Origins–Violence, Humanity, and the Future, either live or by webcast on April 5th.

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    Parallels Between Mantis Shrimp and Human Color Vision

    Mantis shrimp. Photo credit: Roy Caldwell

    Despite tremendous differences in human versus shrimp eye structure and brain circuitry, the striking similarity between the color sensitivities of primate brain color-selective neurons and shrimp photoreceptors provides evidence of a common computational strategy across extremely divergent species.

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    Daniel Suarez’s Influx Is Super Fluxing Bitchin’!


    I loved the book, and couldn’t—wouldn’t—didn’t—set it down. With Influx, Daniel Suarez becomes the master, and Michael Crichton should be honored by the comparison.

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    It’s Love’s Illusions I Recall…

    Title: ‘E-motion’, by Gianni A. Sarcone

    Gianni Sarcone’s illusions are beautiful and evocative of our most cherished emotion.

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    Neuroscientists Discover The Secret Behind Galileo’s Illusion


    Scientists have studied a visual illusion first discovered by Galileo Galilei, and found that it occurs because of the surprising way our eyes see lightness and darkness in the world.

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    Illusion of the Week: Legos and M&M’s Bulge Illusion.

    Image credit: Mary Coffelt, Briena Heller, and Michael McCamy, Martinez-Conde and Macknik Laboratories, Barrow Neurological Institute

    If you’ve ever played with Legos, you know that they’re all about straight lines and 90-degree corners. Not in this version of Akiyoshi Kitaoka’s “Bulge” illusion. The strategically placed purple and white M&Ms distort your perception of the Lego checkerboard, making it bulge out.

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