If you went blind, you?d still be able to unconsciously make your way across a cluttered room without bumping into anything. You’ve experienced this kind of blindsight if you’ve ever reflexively reached for a ball suddenly thrown at you. It?s made possible by a primitive visual pathway that controls behavior without conscious vision.
In Discover magazine, Eric Haseltine has created a way you can discover your blindsight. Click on the link below to see a picture of a group of coins. When you open your hand as if you were about to pick up one of the silver dollars, you automatically open your fingers wider than when you had reach for one of the dimes.
Although we can see more with our eyes, our regular vision is more easily fooled than our blindsight. When you look at the coin picture, you?ll assume that the penny on the right is smaller than the one on the left. But if you click on and drag them next to each other, you can see they’re actually the same size.
But your blindsight won?t be fooled. You can test this by opening your thumb and forefinger as if you were going to pick up the left penny. Before you “grab” it, use the lined scale to measure the separation between your thumb and forefinger. Repeat this procedure for the right penny and compare the results. You?ll discover that your blindsight knew that both pennies were the same size all along.
To see the coin picture,click here.
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