How many black dots do you see? your eyes can lie

543 points
How many black dots do you see your eyes can

It must be assumed that if our eyes do not see, they are lying to us. It seems like a proverb, but it is a reality demonstrated by a “simple” image, the object of scientific work to study the real scope that our sight can have.

Black dots on a very light grid tend to disappear, and our eyes show them in groups, giving us the feeling of movement. The incredible optical illusion is the work of two scientists from the École Normale Supérieure in Paris and the University of Oregon (United States).

How many black dots do you see at the same time?

Yes, our eyes “lie” to compensate for the inability to process information simultaneously: there are twelve black dots in some positions in the image, but our brain cannot see simultaneously, which gives us the illusion of a moving image, like if they were different frames of a movie that is running.

The drawing was first published in 2000, then taken up several times by mathematicians, psychologists, and simple enthusiasts, and is known as “Nino’s illusion«, based on the name of its main author.

An optical illusion that shows us that our eyes cannot process everything we see

“When the black dots (or white in this image) in a bright grid are small and colored black, they tend to disappear – says the original article – You only see a few at a time, in groups that move irregularly on the page . Where perception ‘disappears’, the meshes at gray intersections appear ‘continuous’, creating other intersections and other black spots in reality but which do not exist.

But why does this happen? Unfortunately (or fortunately) we are very limited and so are our eyes. The cause is, in fact, our peripheral vision: if we fixate on a specific point, our eyes see the edges poorly and the brain tries to compensate somehow, extrapolating what it can of the visual information at its disposal, in a sense, «they invent» either «fill“, as if everything were “a continuous graph»just like a movie, looking for the sequel, our eyes walk over the image.

Like it? Share with your friends!

543 points