Dynamic Müller-Lyer Illusion

2017 Third prize
Gianni A. Sarcone: “Dynamic Müller-Lyer Illusion”. Archimedes Laboratory Project. Italy

Author description: Müller-Lyer’s illusion proves that a segment can visually appear longer or shorter depending on the sense of the arrow heads at its ends. As shown in the animation, the red dot in the middle of the line is equidistant from the other two red dots, although the ends of the line visually appear to alternately stretch and shrink like a rubber band! The radial version of the illusion is even more impressive: http://goo.gl/sas92D. The perceptual increasing and decreasing of the segments occurs in a very short time. Thus, I suppose it is more a physiological phenomenon, rather than a psychological bias. Our attention seems to be attracted by the receptive field WITHIN the V-shaped arrow heads, causing an illusory inward or outward shift of the ends of the line.

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