Vision Sciences Stuff - Friday

Here are a couple of the cool, interesting, funny, or quirky (I won’t say which) talks/posters I happened to catch at the Vision Science Society meeting on [...]

the limits of cognitive training

A new study published today in Nature by Adrian Owen and colleagues reports the results of a large-scale study done in conjunction with the BBC of the effects of video game playing on cognitive performance. The core result: The cognitive training tasks had little benefit for other aspects of [...]

When less is more (memory limits and correlations)

A series of articles by Yaakov Kareev from the mid-late 1990s showing something remarkable: People with less working memory capacity are better able to detect moderately strong correlations (Kareev, 1995; Kareev et al, 1997; Kareev, 2000). Understanding why requires a bit of a digression into statistics. [...]

Soup dé jà vu — a short film by Michael Tamburro

A short film by Michael Tamburro illustrating the principles of change blindness in motion [...]

Inattentional blindness for sword swallowing

A possible example of inattentional blindness… Tourists fail to notice when Ig Nobel winner Dan Meyer swallows a sword in front of the famous Liverpool Cavern Club (where the Beatles [...]

A weight lifted?

A recent study re-examines the role of the experimental situation on inflated judgments of the slopes of hills. Earlier evidence showed that wearing a heavy backpack led to inflated estimates of slope, suggesting a role of physiology on conscious judgments. New evidence suggests that the effect instead resulted from subjects guessing that wearing a heavy weight should influence their [...]

Estimating a renowned man's character

A recent study suggests that an end-of-life change can dramatically influence how people judge your moral [...]

A heads-up about head-up displays

A new GM design that effectively turns the windshield of your car into a monitor, augmenting reality and aiding driving in poor conditions. But that can cause problems [...]

The “brain porn” area of the brain

Quinn Norton created this great image spoofing the tendency to treat experimental results as more scientific when they are accompanied by images of the brain:

The figure suggests that there is area of the brain that shuts off when interpreting neuroscience findings. A nice study by Weisberg and colleagues found that adding a line of meaningless [...]

Behind the scenes of the “gorilla experiment”

The title of The Invisible Gorilla refers to an experiment that Dan and I conducted at Harvard in the late 1990s. In the first part of Chapter 1 (which you should be able to read soon when we post an excerpt on our site), we mention that the idea arose originally as an exercise for a [...]