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Thread: The flashed faces distortion effect

  1. #1
    Super Moderator twitchy2.0's Avatar
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    Aug 2008

    Default The flashed faces distortion effect

    Flashed Face Distortion Effect

    Like many interesting scientific discoveries, this one was an accident. Sean Murphy, an undergraduate student, was working alone in the lab on a set of faces for one of his experiments. He aligned a set of faces at the eyes and started to skim through them. After a few seconds, he noticed that some of the faces began to appear highly deformed and grotesque. He looked at the especially ugly faces individually, but each of them appeared normal or even attractive. We called it the “Flashed Face Distortion Effect” and wanted to share it with the world, so we put it on YouTube.

    The effect seems to depend on processing each face in light of the others. By aligning the faces at the eyes and presenting them quickly, it becomes much easier to compare them, so the differences between the faces are more extreme. If someone has a large jaw, it looks almost ogre-like. If they have an especially large forehead, then it looks particularly bulbous. We’re conducting several experiments right now to figure out exactly what’s causing this effect, so watch this space!

    Tangen, J. M., Murphy, S., & Thompson, M. B. (2011). Flashed face distortion effect: Grotesque faces from relative spaces. Perception advance online publication, doi:10.1068/p6968 [Abstract] [Movie]

    Cool. Look directly at the faces, and they're a series of normal looking people. Look at the cross in the center and see the faces with your peripheral vision and they're hideous!


    "The greatest enemy of knowledge is not ignorance, it is the illusion of knowledge."

    -- Stephen Hawking

  2. #2
    Elite Member bellini's Avatar
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    Oct 2007


    That was freaky.

  3. #3
    Elite Member yoyoma's Avatar
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    Oct 2005


    Quote Originally Posted by bellini View Post
    That was freaky.

  4. #4
    Elite Member OrangeSlice's Avatar
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    Dec 2007
    Studying with Master Grumpy Cat


    Weird. My eyes are so crossed now.
    "Schadenfreude, hard to spell, easy to feel." ~VenusinFauxFurs

    "Scoffing is one of my main hobbies!" ~Trixie

  5. #5
    Gold Member Froogy's Avatar
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    Mar 2009


    I dont get it

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