Perceptual Tachyons Demo


Conference Name

Vision Sciences Society Annual Meeting

Conference Location

St. Pete Beach, Florida, USA


Tachyons are hypothetical particles derived from the negative square root of the equations of Relativity Theory, that always travel faster than the speed of light. The perceptual equivalent of this concept is the rapid perceived motion of the dynamic snaky noise induced within the static rings embedded in the radial rays of the Leviant ‘Enigma’ illusion. The new  illusions are the result of rotating the pattern around its center. 1) When the radial rays are slowly rotated, the noise induced in the ring seems to settle into a stable pattern that rotates slowly in the opposite direction (which is the opposite of the moving ‘visual phantoms’ of Tynan & Sekuler, 1975, which move in the same direction as the inducing grating). 2) When the ray rotation stops, the adjacent ring noise flies off at a rapid rate in the SAME direction of rotation, much faster than than the inducing ray motion.  This induced motion aftereffect  is thus opposite in three respects to the classic motion aftereffect, which is always slower than the inducing motion, runs in the opposite direction, and is only seen within the region of a textured field. The rapid, same-directional, field-adjacent property of the new illusion qualifies it for description as a ‘perceptual tachyon’ effect.

Year of Publication:
Fine ray pattern with superposed colored rings in which dynamic rotating texture is induced by some neuroperceptual interactin.