Tuesday, October 23, 2007

she's clearly turning right, right?

I was forwarded a link to a test to determine whether one is left or right brained (click here). I was expecting a bunch of questions followed by a score, but no: the test is merely an animated image of a woman spinning around. And she was spinning to the right. The accompanying information says if you see her spinning clockwise, you're right brained. If she's spinning counter-clockwise, you're left brained.

Wait a minute. This must be a joke. She is clearly turning clockwise, how could anyone see her turning counter-clockwise? It's impossible. And besides, we may interpret things in two ways, but the data is the data: one cannot turn both clockwise and counter-clockwise at the same time.

I forwarded the link to my co-worker, who also saw the dancer turning clockwise. Of course. But then she said, "Oh wait! No, she's turning the other way!" Suddenly the dancer started spinning counter-clockwise for my co-worker. I looked again, for a long time, but she kept turning right. Then, for a strange blip of about 30 seconds, I also saw the woman spinning counter-clockwise. Aughhhhhhhhhh!

Well, I'm a little bewildered. I don't know if this optical illusion can determine right- or left-brain propensity, but it certainly shows that things which seem utterly obvious to us can be seen a different way by other people. It's not a surprise to me that I'd be right-brained, nor is it a surprise that my co-worker would be more balanced between the two. I do wonder, however, how many people see this dancer turning counter-clockwise at first glance?

7 comments:

Katya Vondermuhll said...

Clearly she's turning clockwise.

blue_sparrow said...

I think it has to do with the shadow of her foot. When I first opened the link, I saw her as spinning clockwise...until I scrolled down to see the whole image and saw how the shadow appears to move from right to left; then it immediately switched on me! Maybe left & right-brained people tend to make assumptions by paying attention to different kinds of cues?
Btw, love your blog. :)

Nostalgia said...

She was turning clock-wise when I was looking at her, but the moment I put my eyes on reading the explanation on the left - she switched into the opposite direction! So, I thought it's just a joke: that she turns one way for several seconds and then the other. But it took me a good while to make her go back to clock-wise. Once I managed it - I had no trouble seeing both. It's a confusing test, Amber.

Lucy said...

Hmmmm. Pdn.K.S. saw her spinning counter-clockwise at first glance, as did Charles. Charles, though, said she went counter-clockwise for a few seconds then clockwise a few seconds and then counter-clockwise again--flipping back and forth.

Blue Sparrow: thank you!

edmund said...

I had a very similar experience to veronika, as did matt. Love and miss you darling.

Dove Knits said...

I absolutely do not believe that she's turning clockwise!

Dove Knits said...

Wait, I mean I see her going clockwise, and can't see it counterclockwise.