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Illusion Chasers

Illusion Chasers


Illusions, Delusions, and Everyday Deceptions
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Illusion of the Week: Here Comes the Sun

The views expressed are those of the author and are not necessarily those of Scientific American.


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This week’s illusion, by vision scientist Alan Stubbs from the University of Maine, competed as a top ten finalist in the 2006 Best Illusion of the Year Contest. To experience the illusion, sit at normal reading distance in front of your computer screen and then lean forward toward the center of the image.  An exploding supernova of brightness will ensue.  Move your head back and forth in front of your monitor to experience shrinking and expanding brightness.

Created by Allan Stubbs

You can read more and experience different versions of this illusion here.

Susana Martinez-Conde About the Author: Susana Martinez-Conde and Stephen L. Macknik are laboratory directors at the Barrow Neurological Institute in Phoenix. Follow on Twitter @illusionchasers.

The views expressed are those of the author and are not necessarily those of Scientific American.





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  1. 1. Mark Robinson 1:53 am 08/1/2013

    Not only that, but if you wait a few seconds before zooming in, the colours appear to invert – red becomes cyan, and blue becomes a pale orange. I suspect that if you constructed it from two alternating complimentary colours, it would appear that the colours would swap places when you zoomed in.

    Link to this

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