kottke.org posts about opticalillusions

Blue and green optical illusionJul 06 2009

This amazing optical illusion was everywhere last week, but if you didn't see it, you should check it out.

Ames' WindowJun 09 2009

This is one of the freakiest optical illusions I've ever seen.

(thx, veronica)

Optical illusion shoesJun 04 2009

It took me at least 30 seconds of looking at these shoes to realize that the woman wasn't floating two inches off the ground and what I thought were shadows are actually heels. Even knowing the secret, the effect switches for me like a Necker cube or the spinning dancer.

Like a pirateMay 20 2008

Here's a fun optical/muscular illusion to try out:

This morning I went into the darkest room in our house (the kids' bathroom), closed the door, and turned off the lights for 5 minutes. There was enough light coming in through the crack in the door that after a minute or two I could begin to make out shapes in the room: A towel rack, the shower curtain. My eyes had adapted to the dark condition. Then I closed my right eye and covered it with my hand. I turned the lights back on, for a minute, until my left eye had adapted to the light. Then I turned the lights off.

I could still see the towel rack and shower curtain with my right eye, which remained adapted to darkness. But my left eye could see nothing. In fact, my left eye felt as if it was closed. I made every effort to open the eye, but it seemed that some unstoppable force was keeping it closed. The only way to make my eye feel as if it was open was to cover it with my hand. I still couldn't see anything with the eye, but at least I could convince myself it was open.

Spinning dance optical illusionOct 11 2007

I've been obsessing over this optical illusion ever since I ran across it yesterday.

Spinner

Is she spinning clockwise or counterclockwise? Or both...and how is that even possible? It's a left-brain vs. right-brain test...which way she spins for you determines which side of your brain is more dominant. (Tip: if you're having trouble getting her to switch directions, focus on a point a couple of inches below her feet...that seems to do it for me.)

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