Perception is the process of attaining awareness or understanding of the environment by organizing and interpreting sensory information coming from body receptors and sensory organs into CNS.

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Human perception of time depending on age

From what I can tell and what thus far all people with whom I discussed this subject confirmed is that time appears to "accelerate" as we age. Digging a little, most explanations I found basically ...
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159 views

What effect does a bat's echolocation have on other bats?

Bat echolocation is a perceptual system where ultrasonic sounds are emitted specifically to produce echoes. By comparing the outgoing pulse with the returning echoes, the brain and auditory nervous ...
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200 views

Haidinger's brush: Is this a by-product of the eye's physics, or are there any evolutionary grounds for it?

The human eye is, very subtly, sensitive to the polarization of light. This is an effect known as Haidinger's brush (see Wikipedia article of this name). What, if anything, is known or at least ...
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Are some animals, like dogs and cats, color-blind and how do we know that?

I have heard that some animals, including dogs, cats and donkeys, are color-blind. They cannot recognize any color. Is that true? And how can humans verify that animals are color-blind, or not? During ...
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885 views

Do humans perceive temperature or heat-flux? (or both?)

The general understanding is that when I touch an object, I perceive its (relative) temperature. A metal object at room temperature, however, will often feel cool to the touch. This leads me to ...
11
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159 views

What portions of the brain have drastic changes in activation when we “sense” someone is there?

I was watching an old Arnold Schwarzenegger movie ("Commando") where he plays an elite soldier (surprise). An enemy tries to sneak up on him, and Arnold says that he smelled the other guy ...
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361 views

Is it a limitation of the eyes, or the brain, that we can't see a moving bullet?

Are the photoreceptors in our eyes not fast enough to register the fast moving bullet, or is the brain not powerful enough to make sense of something happening that fast?
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What limits the speed of human perception?

I'm writing a novel in which the main character's perception and thought processes are sped up considerably, in essence slowing down the world around him. To others, it seems like his reactions are ...
9
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65 views

How can bats achieve good resolution with wide beams?

I have been reading about the echolocation system in bats. papers state that bats tend to produce a sonar beam that has a beam angle (-3db) of about 30-40 degrees. This would be considered a wide beam ...
8
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2answers
184 views

Why are melodies/harmonies perceived as pleasurable by humans?

Is there any evolutionary advantage to finding melodies or harmonies pleasurable? Does the ear pick up these particular oscillating waves differently from other sounds, and if so, how does that affect ...
8
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1answer
195 views

Are 2 eyes necessary for 3D vision?

To start off: I'm not a biology student, but a computer science major It has always been my understanding that humans have 2 eyes so that we can have 3D vision: the left eye see more of the left side ...
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What is the science behind the inaccurate perception of colors?

If I go into a green room (all walls are semitransparent and green) and spend some time - around 10+ min - in there, when I come out all my eyes see is white as pink. I see no (or very few other) ...
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573 views

How can you test what color different people perceive?

If I would show someone a yellow object and ask them, "is this object yellow?" That person would say "yes". But I could never know if my perception of the color yellow is the same as that other ...
7
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1answer
101 views

Perception of white in the absence of rods

If the retina would not have any cones, one would be color blind. If white is the presence of all colors (in the matter of color mixture, not addition), then what would white look like without rods?
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2answers
642 views

How do we know the brain flips images projected on the retina back around?

Why do we turn images upside down again rather than dealing with them directly, still vertically rotated after passing through our lens? I don't see how that would cause any problems, and how we'd ...
7
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1answer
162 views

Why are pilots under the illusion of gaining altitude without doing so?

We had a lecture about the balancing systems of the body (mainly the otolith organ / semilunar canals) in which a case was described where a pilot crashed into a ship. He was supposed to keep his ...
6
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1answer
103 views

Receptors for red and far-red light in plants: Shade avoidance

Franklin (2009) describes how plants use the ratio of the red wavelength (660-670nm) over the far-red wavelength (725-735nm) (R:FR) in order to avoid shading. My question is: which receptor is ...
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5answers
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Do male animals visually perceive females as more/less attractive?

If we somehow remove pheromones, do animals experience a phenomenon similar to human "visual beauty" when looking at members of the opposite sex? For example, given a set of 20 female ducks observed ...
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1answer
441 views

How precisely can we sense temperature differences?

We have thermoreceptors, thus we can sense temperature (both warm and cold). I'm interested in the sensitivity of our thermoreceptors - What is the smallest temperature difference that we can sense? ...
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Does coloring affect the perception of depth?

I have a question about the mechanics of human vision which may be as much of a physics question as it is a biology/physiology question. I noticed that if I try to imagine a clear blue daytime sky ...
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1answer
51 views

Braquio-abduction illusion explanation and references

Illusion: Lying down on a hard flat floor move arms up and down (as when doing a snow angel) while keeping them touching the floor. While repeating it a few times the floor begins to appear concave, ...
5
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1answer
52 views

Definition of general anesthesia

To quote Goodman & Gilman : An alternative way of defining the anesthetic state is to consider it as a collection of “component” changes in behavior or perception. The components of the ...
5
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1answer
122 views

Congenital blindness due to retinitis pigmentosa - does it exist?

Retinitis pigmentosa (RP) patients typically become blind after a period of years in which their eye sight slowly deteriorates due to photoreceptor degeneration. Generally RP patients develop ...
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1answer
152 views

What determines the perceived pitch (frequency) of tinnitus?

I noticed that every time I suffer temporary tinnitus after going to a very loud concert, the frequency I perceive is identical. I'd put it somewhere around 17 kHz, but it's difficult to pin down with ...
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1answer
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What part of the brain controls depth perception?

Specifically the part of the brain that does depth perception based on binocular vision. I have searched all over the web and have turned up nothing. Is it the same part of the brain that processes ...
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1answer
95 views

What determined the evolution of different faces in humans?

The most distinctive characteristic of a human is it's face - it is unique among each individual (with the exception of identical twins). It is uncertain to me if whether we best identify other humans ...
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Why is wind cold for humans? [closed]

Coming out of the pool the other day, I felt very cold because I was wet and the wind picked up. My idea is that a "cold" feeling should be associated with low temperatures, but it's indeed wrong. ...
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Why are (some) cats attracted by bleach?

(Sorry if this question is only partly biological) I have noticed that several cats (including the one that keeps sleeping in my house), are fond of the odor of bleach (eau de Javel) and chlorine. ...
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1answer
4k views

Why does ear wax taste sour?

Why does ear wax taste sour? I am interested in both the physiochemical mechanisms and the evolutionary reasons behind the sour taste of earwax.
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123 views

Is tactile perception two-dimensional or three-dimensional?

Is tactile perception two-dimensional or three-dimensional? Can tactile sense be mapped on 2-dimensional map of the surface of the human body or does human receive tactile signal as a 3D position ...
3
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1answer
104 views

How is sweetness measured?

Some time ago, I read in a newspaper--though I can't recall the details--a list of (mostly artificial) sweeteners and a list comparing how many times sweeter each was than sugar. How is relative ...
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1answer
207 views

Are similar smells usually based on similar chemicals?

Building off of this question: Why does freshly cut grass smell like a watermelon?, is it usually the case that things that we perceive as having similar smells are, in fact, the same or a similar ...
3
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1answer
325 views

What's the frequency resolution of the human ear?

I was thinking about audio compression (namely mp3), that "filters" out sound that we would not likely hear. The MP3 lossy audio data compression algorithm takes advantage of a perceptual ...
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3answers
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What is it called when one human eye is seeing brighter color than the other?

What is the name of a phenomenon where one of the human eyes is seeing brighter/more saturated color than the other? I can observe the same object from the same position while alternating which eye is ...
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1answer
428 views

Perception of distant lights without glasses

I am fairly short-sighted and wear glasses pretty much all the time. Naively, I would expect that when I take my glasses off, the image I see should look very much the same as as a photograph that's ...
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72 views

Why doesn't lard taste good? [closed]

I mean looking from evolutionary perspective sugar tastes sweet and individuals that had this perception ate more sugar and survived and those that didn't perceive sugar as sweet didn't eat it and ...
3
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Color perception vs shade perception demo

I can't seem to find one of the best demos I've seen of color vs brightness perception. It consisted of a rotating animation of earth made of red of bright red points on a dark green background. As ...
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1answer
156 views

Does “squinting” make you concentrate better on a logic test?

We have all had those moments of intense concentration on some tough exam, perhaps a college test or whatever... Why is it that when we squint, it feels like we can focus and concentrate better on ...
2
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1answer
96 views

How good is information transfer between the hemispheres of the brain?

I sometimes listen to lectures on my phone using ear buds, but occasionally with only one ear bud in. Is the other half of my brain losing out on any aspect of the lecture? Just how good is the corpus ...
2
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1answer
77 views

Do siblings have a bias toward believing they look different from each other?

Anecdotally, I have observed (myself included) that siblings tend to think that they look less similar to each other than an unrelated observer would say. Is there any experimental data to back this ...
2
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1answer
139 views

Using perceptual adaptation for enhancing realism of VR/other entertainment

I am quite a fan of the recent oculus rift VR glasses, but it does have several flaws over normal vision, most notably a much less wide field of view, the so-called screen door effect because of too ...
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Limits of brain neuronal spatial mapping

It is being claimed that brain maps the world space in (roughly) 1-to-1 correspondance of a place to a neuron (link1, link2). My question is: as the mapping happens in 1-to-1 manner, then is it ...
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0answers
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Skin extra sensitive to heat after burn

I just got my finger burnt (first degree burn $\Rightarrow$ I didn't even bother to bear the wound). It didn't hurt much, even when I pressed the wound. However, when exposed to heat (hot water, but ...
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Is perceived time compressed or expanded while dreaming? (or does it match reality) [closed]

I often dream long extended dreams. Sometimes I wonder if the timeline of the story of my dream occurs compressed, in a moment, or other times extended slowly over a long duration. Is there any way ...
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White/Gold vs Blue/Black dress

So I'm sure you've all seen the dress photo where people see the dress as either White and Gold or Blue and Black. It has essentially 'split' the internet because some people see the dress and they ...
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Organisms with the most extreme sensory capabilities? (sight, smell, sound) [closed]

Background It is quite mind boggling to imagine what it would be like to be missing sight, sound, touch, smell, taste etc. Question Which organism holds the record for most extreme sensory ...
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137 views

What causes a selective shift of colour perception after removing wavelength filtered glasses?

Background To improve sleep by reducing blue-light melatonin disruption, I wear night-glasses that filter short wavelengths (e.g. something like these). With these glasses on, both the top and bottom ...
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1answer
75 views

Is there an absolute minimum intensity level to the stimuli we can perceive?

By stimuli that we can perceive, I mean what our five senses can perceive. Is there an absolute minimum for humans, or can we "train" ourselves to perceive stimuli at lower intensity? And if there ...
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1answer
646 views

What is the brightest color a light source that only emits blue frequency light can achieve?

Let's say there is a luminous light bulb that only emits blue light, and you (or a camera if you prefer) look at it from a close distance. Will the maximum brightness perceived not have any "white" to ...
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98 views

Sensory adaptation regarding smell and hearing

Imagine the scenario. My friend and I are playing a game of chess near a highway. Initially, I notice the sound of the highway. While I'm playing chess, however, I do not notice it. After the game my ...