Deviate – Beau Lotto

“colour enables us to see the similarities and differences between surfaces, according to the full spectrum of light that they reflect. But what you’ve just done is in many respects mathematically impossible. Why? Because, as Berkeley tells us, we have no direct access to our physical world, other than through our senses. And the light that falls onto our eyes is determined by multiple things in the world, not only the colour of objects, but also the colour of their illumination, and the colour of the space between us and those objects. You vary any one of those parameters, and you’ll change the colour of the light that falls onto your eye.”

— Lotto, B. (2017). Transcript of “Optical illusions show how we see”. [online] Ted.com. Available at: https://www.ted.com/talks/beau_lotto_optical_illusions_show_how_we_see/transcript#t-142579 [Accessed 22 Sep. 2017].

“ In terms of the sheer number of neural connections, just 10% of the information our brains use to see comes from our eyes.
Perception derives not just from our five senses, but from our brain’s seemingly infinitely sophisticated network that makes sense of all the incoming information. But why does any of this matter? Why might we need to deviate from the way we perceive?Perception matters because it underpins everything we think, know and believe. Our sense of self, our most essential way of understanding existence, begins and ends with perception.

An increasingly connected world is also inherently more unpredictable. In this context, doubt is often disparaged in our culture because it is associated with indecision, a lack of confidence and weakness. I argue the opposite.

Uncertainty is the problem that our brains evolved to solve. Life is inherently uncertain because the world and the things in it are always changing. An increasingly connected world is also inherently more unpredictable. In this context, doubt is often disparaged in our culture because it is associated with indecision, a lack of confidence and weakness. I argue the opposite.

We need to embrace the perceptual power of doubt and the humility that comes with understanding our own brains. It’s about why we see what we do, and how recognising that we don’t have access to reality leads us to get more things right. What is the next greatest innovation? It’s not a technology, it’s a way of seeing.”

— Lotto, B. (2017). It’s time to see things differently… to improve your life. [online] the Guardian. Available at: https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2017/apr/23/deviate-the-science-of-seeing-differently-beau-lotto [Accessed 22 Sep. 2017].

 

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