OPTICAL illusions have long used science to trick the human brain – here's how.
There are several types of optical illusions, such as cognitive, physiological, and literal, that each play on different parts of our brains.
One optical illusion that has been blowing people's minds lately includes an image of two buses.
In this graphic, the two yellow school buses appear to go down a winding road.
The bus up top appears larger than the one below it, which also looks to be closer to the observer.
However, are the buses really different sizes, or is just our brain playing tricks on us?
This is a classic example of a Ponzo illusion, coined by Italian psychologist Mario Ponzo in 1911.
Ponzo suggested that the human mind perceives an object’s size based on its background, even in flat images.
He illustrated this by drawing two identical lines across a pair of converging lines, similar to railroad tracks.
The upper line appears longer because it seems to be further away.
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Therefore, our mind believes that the lower line must in turn be smaller.
In reality, the two lines are the same size but because of their surrounding backgrounds, the mind perceives different lengths.
This is the same type of science employed by the optical illusion featuring the buses.
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A similar optical illusion is Müller-Lyer, which also involves a set of two identical lines.
In this tricky image, the lines are equipped with arrows at the end that seem to distort the lines’ lengths.
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