Living the Scientific Life (Scientist, Interrupted)

Senses Challenge

Do your eyes deceive you? Can you really trust your senses, or do they sometimes deceive you? Take this quiz to find out! It’s a lot harder than you think. This quiz also includes an explanation for each question that helps you understand how your brain is “tricked” by your senses.

My score: 14/20. I guess all that Anatomy and Physiology teaching served me well! (i got 19/20 on the second try — that line graphic is tricky).

I found it interesting that a crying baby is so danged loud (I thought my perception was simply a measure of my own annoyance level) — nearly as loud as a pop concert and louder than a motorbike! I also got lucky on several questions, like the white chocolate and caviar question (I HATE white chocolate), the musical notes and the Godzilla/King Kong questions. Did the timer make you nervous? Did you guess correctly on some questions?


  1. #1 pough
    March 20, 2006

    I did neither well nor poorly (10/20), but at least I now find I’m justified in being repulsed by parmesan cheese!

  2. #2 coturnix
    March 20, 2006

    I got 12/20 but I was irreverent in a couple of places and experimented as if it was not a life-and-death situation.

  3. #3 Sean Foley
    March 20, 2006

    18 out of 20, but I was guessing on both of the food combination questions (I don’t like white chocolate or pineapple, so all of them sounded pretty unappetizing).

  4. #4 Kele
    March 20, 2006

    Haha, 7/20. I got a couple wrong because I skipped the obvious answer because I figured it was a trick question.And what was with the food questions? I would assume people have different opinions as to which is better…

  5. #5 Lab Cat
    March 21, 2006

    I got 11/20. Relieved to have done well at the food questions as that is sort of what I do all day. At least I read about it. Actually, food tasting and food combos are much more “controlled” (not the word I am really looking for)than we realize.

    I didn’t like the fact that the test was timed though. Hasn’t anyone told the Beeb that it ruins quizzes for dyslexics? I missed a few of the earlier questions as I panicked into answering before reading the instructions as there was this d*mn counter ticking down.

  6. #6 Kevin
    March 21, 2006

    15/20 – and I know that I lost a couple of points simply by being colour-blind! (And yes, I agree that the food questions were all pretty yucky…)

    I’ve always been able to smell butyrate in cheeses. At least ever since I knew what it is. (Foul, acrid, putrid, bitter, …)

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