E2 Perception of Stimuli
Essential Biology: E2 Perception of Stimuli
Collection of animations from North Harris College
Eye structure tutorial from Sumanas
Eye structure from FreezeRay
Neat virtual eye dissection from eschoolonline
Simple how-the-eye-works from BiologyMad
Explaining Visual Processing
- Neat (advanced) Java applets from John Krantz, Hanover College
- The Sense of Sight from Wisconsin Online
- Image processing in the retina (including edge enhancement), from Freeman LifeWire
- Visual pathways: contralateral processing from Sumanas
Eight ways to restore sight to the blind, from Discover Galleries
Test your colour vision acuity, from X-Rite
And how does colour vision work? from PhET
AMAZING! Retina implant restores vision. Here’s the article and here’s a patient describing his experience:
How many megapixels is the human eye? from Brainiac.
Close your left eye and stare at the +. Move your head closer to the screen and keep staring at the +, but pay attention to the dot. What happens? Explain why.
Here’s another demonstration, via Richard Wiseman’s illusions blog:
Eye defects animation (short vs long sightedness) from FreezeRay.com
How the Ear Works, from NobelPrize.org
Ear structures from FreezeRay
The Sense of Hearing from Wisconsin Online
Neat Ear Tutorial from University of Alaska Fairbanks
McGraw Hill Effect of Sound Waves on Cochlear Structures
How sound works, PhET Lab simulation
Test your hearing range (carefully) from the University of New South Wales
How do some blind humans use echolocation to get around?
Can violinists tell the difference between a new, expertly-made violin and a classic Stradivarius? This article by Ed Yong outlines a neat experiment which is a good example of double-blind testing as used in medicine.
The peer-iodic table of illusions, from NewScientist.com
The Mantis Shrimp’s amazing visual capabilities, from NotExactlyRocketScience. Is the Mantis Shrimp the coolest animal ever? If you watch this TED Talk on measuring the fastest animals on Earth, you will agree.
TOK: Perception and the (un)reliability of eyewitness testimonies
With the forensic developments of DNA profiling and analysis, we see a move to more reliance on empirical scientific evidence in criminal cases. In recent news stories, many convictions based on eyewitness testimony have been overturned by new DNA evidence. Why are eyewitness testimonies so notoriously unreliable?
This playlist from 60 minutes, “Eyewitness”, looks into some of the issues:
The Innocence Project outlines some of the reasons why eyewitnesses get it wrong.
TruthInJustice outlines some overturned cases, and this academic paper from Durham University outlines the UK’s first exoneration due to DNA evidence – which shows a whole range of forensic evidence in use.
Does taking a photographs impact your memory?
This article on The Guardian looks at a paper on the effect of taking photos on the photographers’ memories of the objects, with some interesting caveats/ prompts for discussion.
The eye is not irreducably complex – it is the product of natural selection
Evolution of vertebrate eyes from Pharyngula
Owl monkey example of eye evolution, from NotExactlyRocketScience
Inspirational Talk from TED2010
Here is Pawan Sinha talking about how the brain learns to see, and how we can help the children who are born blind in India. Find out more about Sinha’s work and Project Prakash at his university website (MIT).
Amazing reading: Vision chip restores sight to man, Guardian Science
And another talk (by Beau Lotto) on how we see, using some really cool optical illusions:
This BBC clip has some super slo-mo action (and a mantis shrimp starring role), which really highlights how much we miss as we take in visual stimuli:
Gravity-defying ramp wins illusion contest, from Nature
Illusion contest, from NeuralCorrelate
The ‘blue’ and ‘green’ are the same colour!
In this article from NotExactlyRocketScience, Ed Yong explains that the size of your brain’s visual cortex (which is incredibly variable between people), affects how you see the world – including how likely you are to fall for optical illusions.
This one is the Thatcher Effect Illusion. Is Angeline more beautiful this way or upside down?
The next two are after-image illusions:
Key terms: stimulus, perception, retina, contra-lateral, edge enhancement, rod, cone, cortex