July 5, 2010
Sometimes people grow into a role they had not intended.
During the recent, sad flap about Helen Thomas’s offensive remarks and forced retirement, some media outlets carried a photo of Thomas that looked almost posed to me. In our creativity consulting years ago, we used the old, famous optical illusion of the “old woman/young woman.”
Make up your own commentary. What do you see? How do you know you’re not looking at an illusion?
Famous optical illusion, Old woman/Young woman, color version - borrowed from Gryphons Aerie
Veteran White House reporter Helen Thomas, sometime prior to 2009
July 12, 2009
I like to use optical illusions for warm-ups and bell ringers, to get students thinking and looking at things a bit differently.
Richard Wiseman said this is the best new optical illusion he’s seen so far this year:
Image by Prof. Kitaoka, 2009
What’s the illusion? Well, you see those green stripes? See the blue stripes? Actually they are the same color.
You don’t think so? Zoom in. Or click over to Wiseman’s blog site and see what happens when all the other colors are turned to black.
I know you think you know what you see; what you think you see may not be what you actually see. Your brain modifies what you think you see, in order to make it appear sensible, and in doing so, it sometimes makes you see things quite differently from what they are. Don’t forget that.
So, how do we know what we know? How do we know that what we know is correct?