Color perception

Cognitive Daily

Category archives for Color perception

This is a guest post by Suzie Eckl, one of Greta’s top student writers for Spring 2007 Forget color television. Before we had color, we had black and white. Before we had movies, we had photographs. And before photographs we had… Engravings? Prior to August 19, 1839, the date Daguerre and Niepce revealed that they…

“I just didn’t see him” is a claim that’s repeated over and over in accident reports. Drivers earnestly claim that they simply didn’t notice the bicycle/pedestrian/motorcycle they crashed into. The claim is made so frequently that certainly there must be a grain of truth to it. Yet it certainly isn’t the case that car drivers…

Take a look at the image below. Your job is to find the T among the sea of Ls. If you’re like most people it will take just a second or two. Figure 1: If you repeat this task several dozen times, each time with a new set of Ls and T in different colors,…

Color categories, as we pointed out in this post, are remarkably consistent, even across different cultures and languages. “TLTB” pointed out in the comments that for people with color blindness, the color categories might not make much sense. He brought up an excellent point, one that becomes doubly perplexing when we realize that no two…

The World Color Survey is a massive project which attempts to understand how colors are categorized in different languages. The researchers studied 110 different languages, none of which had a written component, which ensured that only spoken word categories would be used to describe the colors. Do the speakers all understand colors the same way?…

[article originally posted September 27, 2005] All this talk about stereotypes can get you thinking. Perhaps some stereotypes reflect actual differences. Take color vision, for example: men often refer to themselves as “color-impaired,” letting the women in their lives make home design decisions and even asking them to match clothing for them. Maybe they’re just…

One of the amazing things about the Stroop Effect is how much good research is being done based on this simple phenomenon, over 70 years later. One of the neatest recent experiments was created by Peter Wühr and Florian Waszak. I think I’ve created a simple animation that replicates their results. Click on the image…

The Stroop Effect was originally just a language effect: we’re slower identifying the color text is printed in when the words themselves name different colors. In the 81 years since the effect was first observed, it’s been applied to a variety of very different phenomena. In general, the effect is explained by automatic processing: when…

The Stroop Effect is one of the most-studied phenomena in psychology. The test is easy to administer, and works in a variety of contexts. The simplest way to see how it works is just to look the following two lists. Don’t read them, instead say the color each word is displayed in, as quickly as…

When emotions make you see colors

A Witches’ Bible states that “the sensitive is psychically aware of character qualities, or emotional or spiritual states, in the subject, and this awareness presents itself to him or her as visual phenomena.” It’s easy to dismiss such claims as pseudoscientific claptrap, yet there exist humans who, when presented with nonvisual stimuli such as tastes…