This Viral Optical Illusion Will Make You Question Your Eyes

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This viral video features an optical illusion that will make you question your own eyes.

The thing with illusions is they’re able to fool us. Once past that, we start thinking how did they manage to do it. Now, begins the quest for answers – a desperate hunt to solve the mystery that has our brains confused massively. An optical illusion has such an effect on us that we go back to it repeatedly to verify our assumptions. This is the typical life-cycle of most optical illusions we see online. And then there’s the strangely shaped “Ames Window”, highly capable of tricking our brains. A video showing the illusion is going viral and making internet users scratch their head in disbelief.

In the video, the TV show host first introduces the illusion to his viewers. The optical illusion makes it appear as if a window is oscillating back and forth when, in reality, it was rotating on a turntable. The second point the host makes it that while many believed the window to be rectangular it was trapezoid-shaped. Taking the mystery to the next level, the host fixes a pen to the window. It appears that the pen is rotating through the oscillating window.

The person who shared the video wrote, “This illusion broke my brain”.

Watch the video here:

The video, from an Australian TV show called The Curiosity Show from the early 1970s, has been viewed more than 2 million times and retweeted more than 18,000 times.

One user compared this to the “flat Earth conspiracy”, saying that it “becomes even more laughable when the starting argument they (flat Earth conspiracy theorists) often make is ‘trust your eyes’”.

Another person shared a “giant version” of the same illusion, saying “Veritasium did a giant version of this illusion with him instead of the pen appearing to rotate through the oscillating window.”

A third user said that “it took me ages, but I made my own version of his amazing revolving window optical illusion and it works!”

Here are a few other reactions:

Named after its inventor, scientist Adelbert Ames Jr, it is a rectangular window that appears to be shaped like a trapezoid. According to Mental Floss, the optical illusion occurs because our eyes are so used to seeing rectangular windows, we are fooled by the cognitive dissonance produced by seeing a trapezoid.

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