Questions tagged [perception]

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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I think I can find out if the food is salted by smell. Is it possible scientifically or just my impression?

I think I can find out if the food is salted by smell. Is it possible scientifically or just my psychological impression?
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Why do we get tunnel vision during fight or flight response?

I have a question regarding tunnel vision during the fight or flight response. I believe that during fight or flight high levels of adrenaline are released which causes the pupils to dilate allowing ...
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Why do we have both on and off bipolar cells?

I have a question regarding the reason behind the 2 bipolar cells. So, from my understanding we have both on and off bipolar cells and from the numerous diagrams I have seen, I find that most show a ...
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Why does exposure to a smell for some time reduce the electrical response of receptor neurons in the olfactory system?

In what way does exposure to a certain smell for some time causes them to loose sensitivity and have a lesser electrical response
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Book request: biology of sensation and perception

I’m interested in learning about the biological and chemical basis of human sensation and perception (on both a microscopic and macroscopic level). This includes The mechanisms underlying our “five ...
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How precisely can humans identify differences in air temperature?

"It feels like it's 30° today" I'm fascinated by how human perception compares to electromechanical sensors in terms of accuracy. "It feels like 23 minutes have passed since I put the cake in the ...
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Are there people blind to touch?

There are people who completely blind or deaf. Are there people who are completely blind to touch in a particular area or in the entirety of their body? If not, are there people in whom the ...
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Why are eyes more sensitive to flicker in periphery — contradictory answers

In terms of the perception of flickering by CRT monitors, This answer suggests that peripheral vision has faster response and is thus more sensitive to flicker due to being provided by rod cells. ...
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Additive property of taste

It might be a dumb question to ask, but I find it confusing. Is the perception of taste additive? Or to be more precise, can two tasty food items combine to give a more delicious product? For me, ...
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Does the Human Eye White Balance?

OK, this may be a stupid question…but here goes. Does the human eye “white balance” itself? I assume that each human perceives colour slightly differently according to the peculiarities of their own ...
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Understanding the “Waterfall Illusion”

Motion after-effect illusions, such as the waterfall illusion, refer to illusions where fixating a screen which shows stimuli moving in a particular direction elicits the perception of motion in the ...
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Surface perception

I'm looking for research studying: How small and compressed together do particles of a surface need to be to be perceived as solid surface to human touch? E.g. sand still feels grainy. Has there been ...
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Are there gaps in what our ears can hear?

I know about the hair cells in our Cochlea and it is the movement of the fluid that makes them vibrate. And it is this that activates the transmission of electrical signals to the brain that become ...
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Does the nature of nervous impulses give us a finite number of things we can perceive?

This is a subject that is very disturbing to me and one that I've been obsessing over for years. I warn you now that this is probably not the sort of thing you get asked on this website and I'm not ...
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Multiple numbers in the Ishihara test?

When I was in high school (30 years ago), I took a biology class, and the instructor showed us an Ishihara color test for color-blindness. (This is the "hidden numbers" test.) What I thought I saw ...
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How many “primary colors” can we smell? [duplicate]

There are many more that three visible wavelength in the visible EM spectrum, and yet we can model any color using only three primary RGB wavelength. Perception of an arbitrary color is equivalent of ...
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Why do simulations of dichromatic color vision portray medium wavelengths as yellow rather than green?

Please take the time to read & answer this at your own convenient pace. Is this even the right way to put this? Do you think this post better belongs in the Physics or Philosophy forums? This ...
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How exactly does sensory substitution work?

Sensory substitution, when one of sensory modality changes into another sensory modality to help someone restore the ability to perceive defective sensory using a working sensory modality. For example,...
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Can one see flickering of a light bulb at 50 Hz?

Yesterday I had a BBQ with some friends. The sun had already set and the only light source left (besides some ambient light from the world around) was a low energy light bulb. After a while I started ...
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How do we perceive weight?

How do we perceive weight of our own body or something we are holding? It might turn out that we don't perceive weight so is it subjective? Is it similar to pain, or something different?
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How do our eyes see an inverted image? [duplicate]

How exactly do our eyes see an inverted image of what we are looking at? Does it have something to do with the shape of our lens (i.e. convex)?
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Best colour for a dog to track an object against green background

As dogs have limited colour perception, what colour would appear with most contrast against a green background for a dog? I understand that red and green are very close in a dog's colour perception, ...
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Consistency of consciouness [closed]

So I was wondering if consciousness is continous and I found out it might not be the case. But in that case it begs a question, what if in every frame of consciousness my old me dies and new is reborn ...
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What are the differences (if any) in brain activity when hallucinating versus perceiving a real object?

I was wondering if there is difference in brain activity when someone is hallucinating an object, say a giraffe compared to when someone is genuinely observing a real giraffe?
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Why does my room suddenly look 'reddish'? My eyes seem to adapt to color

To get the context of this question clear, I would like you to walk through some parts of my house. We'll start with one of my rooms as it appears normally - As evident, this part of my house has a ...
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Is the masking effect of sound related to action potentials or to mechanical aspects of hearing?

I am an applied mathematics / signal processing engineer who wants to learn more and I have a question that has been bugging me for some time. It is known in audio coding circles that human hearing is ...
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Processing of speech/non-speech sounds in the human brain

I have a ""which came first: the chicken or the egg?"-kind of question regarding the processing and understanding of speech / non-speech sounds in the human brain. I'm wondering whether speech and ...
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Is synesthesia caused by crossing the circuitry of different sensory inputs?

I have a question about human perception. After reading the book "Sensory Perceptual Issues in Autism and Asperger Syndrome" and knowing about synesthesia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Synesthesia) ...
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Can crocodilians differentiate their offsprings from other young crocodiles?

I read that some species of crocodilians can take care of their young for as long as a year. How do parents differentiate their offsprings from other young crocodiles? Smell, appearance, sound?
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Is arachnophobia connected to lower immunity against spider toxins?

Are arachnophobics more subceptible to toxical effects coming from spider toxins?
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Do human women smell different before they enter labour?

Surfing youtube I found a video where a cat shows a protective behaviour towards a pregnant woman soon to enter labour. In the miriad of average (dumb) comments I found another person stating that ...
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Is perception contrast based?

If I understand it correctly, humans can discriminate shades and colours based on their inherent contrast, as in we can see colors because there are different colors. Same for shades and for acoustic ...
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Can human perception differentiate between monochromatic and polychromatic light?

Maybe monochromatic is not the right word, what I mean is light consisting of a single wavelength (i.e. a spectral color) versus light composed of photons of multiple wavelengths (intermediate color). ...
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Why do I still see a bright light after looking directly at it?

When you look directly at a bright light, maybe accidentally when looking at the sun, the shape of the image may persistently be perceived even after you look away. Does this image persistence have ...
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What is the smallest touch sensation that a human can feel?

What is smallest touch (pressure) sensation that a normal, healthy person (not hypersensitive nor insensitive) can feel on the palm of the hand?
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What is the term for awareness of or inclusion of real sounds within a dream?

I fell asleep while listening to a podcast, and I am sure I was dreaming but I could also still hear the podcast. The podcast played an important role in the dream, I was searching for the source of ...
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Does size correlate with sensory abilities?

On average, do smaller animals have senses inferior to those of bigger animals? I ask because it seems like a somewhat logical assumption: smaller eyes would in theory collect less light, and smaller ...
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Is the human eye supposed to see the lense effect?

Just as the GoPro cameras, we need lenses to be able to focus. Nevertheless, we can see the "fisheye effect" on the shots taken by GoPros. I am talking about this: Is it possible to notice the "fish ...
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Sensing weather conditions through bodily reactions (e.g. dry hands, arthritic pains)

Two fairly known examples of the effect of certain weather conditions on the body are dry hands due to decreased air humidity around us (more commonly in the winter, as described here), and flaring of ...
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Is brain plasticity such that we can train ourself to see with our ears?

I am finishing writing some code which will parse a photo (eventually video) and use all the RGB information to synthesize an audio representation. I am wondering whether a typical person has ...
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What is the essential benefit of center-surround organization of retinal ganglion cells?

I am trying to understand the significance of the overlapping on-center off-surround and off-center on-surround organization of the retinal ganglion cells, also called center-surround organization. ...
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How we can localize sound vertically (up-down) and front-to-back?

It is quite simple to understand the concept of lateral localization of sound. It depends upon the loudness and time (and wave phase) difference between 2 ears. But how can we detect front-back ...
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Can low temperatures induce a withdrawal reflex?

I read in "Essentials of Pathophysiology: Concepts of Altered Health States By Carol Porth" that "The thermal pain receptors are stimulated only by extremes of temperature such as "freezing cold" ...
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Nature of sight/ color perception?

I am wondering how we perceive color and whether that is dependent on the wavelength of the light, or on something manufactured in the brain. For instance, if we evolved on a planet orbiting a red ...
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Why is there a difference in the orientation of my imagined body vs. my physical body? [closed]

My Personal Experience When I visualise a specific aspect of my body, the inner mental image does not seem to be aligned with my actual physical form in space. What I mean by this is: Say I ...
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Are our ears more sensitive to low or high pitched sounds?

I am a Physics student who also love music and learned a little bit about Medical Physics. I know that the basilar membrane in the cochlear duct enables us to distinguish different frequencies. The ...
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Why do mints make your mouth feel cold?

Why do mints make your mouth feel cold? And specifically, why does your mouth feel so cold if you eat a few mints and then drink a glass of cold water afterwards?
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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 ...
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Why doesn't pure fat taste better than pure sugar? [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 ...
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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 ...