DailyDirt: Fooling Your Senses

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

Visual illusions can be fun to observe, and there are countless examples that trick human perception into seeing things that aren’t real. However, other senses can also be fooled. As computer interfaces try to engage more senses (eg. touch, spatial awareness, etc), there may be interesting applications for tricking human perception for virtual reality environments. We may also just learn more about how our brains work. Here are just a few illusions that might seem creepy or cool, depending on your point of view.

If you’d like to read more awesome and interesting stuff, check out this unrelated (but not entirely random!) Techdirt post via StumbleUpon.

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Comments on “DailyDirt: Fooling Your Senses”

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John Fenderson (profile) says:

Re: Re:

“Like if the fake hand actually does get stabbed, do you feel it?”

No, you don’t (generally speaking — if you combine it with certain psychotropic drugs such as ketamine, it can, though). The rubber hand illusion is tricking a very specific sense (proprioception – the one that tells you where your body parts are in relation to your other body parts). It isn’t tricking pain sensors.

However, the illusion is often used therapeutically for things like phantom pain syndrome where you feel pain in a limb that has been amputated. This apparently works because the mind is confused at the contradictory signals your proprioception is trying to integrate. By providing a visual indication of the missing limb, it seems to get the system back in sync.

(This is one of my favorite subjects, if you can’t tell.)

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