Duck-Rabbit IllusionNecker Cube


An ambiguous figure in which the brain switches between seeing a rabbit and a duck. The duck-rabbit was „originally noted“ by American psychologist Joseph Jastrow (Jastrow 1899, p. 312; 1900; see also Brugger and Brugger 1993). Jastrow used the figure, together with such figures as the Necker cube and Schröder stairs, to point out that perception is not just a product of the stimulus, but also of mental activity (Kihlstrom 2002).

These perceptual oscillations are slooow. While perception takes some tens of milliseconds, the switch from duck to rabbit and back again takes several seconds. I can’t suppress it.

The letters halfway between H and A are ambiguous, too.  As the parameter grows from zero (H) to one (A), the percept must change at some point. The intermediate shapes will cause slow oscillations. In addition, there is a hysteresis effect. There is no  fixed border between H and A.

The geometry of these phenomena is not reflected in the parameter space [0,1]. It’s more like a covering where a part of the space is doubled into two layers. The covering space looks locally like a product of the unit interval X with a discrete output space Y={A,H}

 Date Posted: 31 Mrz 2009 @ 09 54 PM
Last Modified: 02 Jul 2010 @ 11 23 PM
Posted By: Hardy

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