Optical illusions that will have you seeing double

Wait, what am I looking at?

Wait, what am I looking at?

Another day, another optical illusion - but this time it's how your eyes and brain work together that is being tested.

A series of four patterns, relying heavily on colours, use how quickly you get the answer to measure how your brain perceives information. 

The easy(ish) maths problem that's stumping adults
Can you crack the latest intelligence test?
* This optical illusion will have you questioning what you know about colour
This train track optical illusion has everyone scratching their head
Optical 'red dot' illusion has internet baffled
No one can agree how many 3s are in this image
Can you see the panda hiding in this incredible optical illusion? 
College baffles test students with 'what is a microphone?' question




So give your eyes a work out now and try all four:

1. How many colours can you see?

Image: Akitaoka
Answer: There are three colours - red, blue and yellow. But what colour were the central squares? They are all in fact red, but a process called chromatic assimilation (or contrast) could have you seeing orange, depending on the background colour.
Ad Feedback
2. How many colours can you see?
Answer: Yes there are only two - black and white. If you're also seeing grey spots, that's down to the way different parts of your retina are reading the white lines horizontal and vertical. It's an effect called lateral inhibition.
This was discovered by physiologist Ludimar Hermann, from Germany, 200 years ago and is now eventually named after him.
3. Which orange circle is bigger?
Answer: They're the same! Yes, really. That is because the surrounding grey circles are distracting your eyes and giving you a false idea of perspective.
4. How many colours are named?
Answer: Seven - green, black, blue, orange, purple, red and yellow. This one is a little bit of a test of comprehension. Your brain is tricked into counting the colours you can see, as opposed to those you can read, which is what the question really asks.
How well did you do? And are your brain and/or eyes hurting now?

 - Stuff


Ad Feedback
special offers

Furry Friday: Screen stars

Ollie is a rescue dog from South Korea, where he spent the first four years of his life in a cage. Now, he loves to ...

Here's an all-widescreen collection of pets, full of spectacle and all in glorious Flufficolor.

Furry Friday: Let me out

Finally, another pair of great friends separated now by the Rainbow Bridge, Josie (left) and Brum. You get the feeling ...

For pets, windows and doors are both an obstacle and a portal to more fun.

Tiny dogs in a tiny house

It's a tiny house with a big couch - which is all Phoebe and Connor need.

OPINION: My dogs have gone from a big suburban home to an off-grid tiny house. What have they gained and lost?

daily fix



What do the stars have in store for you today?



Rev up your mind with our numbers game



Test your knowledge with our daily crossword

Ad Feedback