An article in the recent Science Daily entitled Attention Makes Sensory Signals Stand Out Amidst Background Noise In Brain shows how neuroscience can begin to help us understand the way we see and percieve. The research carried out at the Salk Institute of Biological Studies has discovered how the brain deliberately isolates what it is, it is trying to comprehend and filters this attention from background stimulae. If we understand that is how the brain operates then it will enable us to be more cognisant of what it is we are trying to focus on.
Whilst reading this article, I chanced upon an article about change blindness and, paying attention as I was, I thought this would nicely illustrate what can happen if you are not able to pay attention properly.
In visual perception, change blindness is the phenomenon that occurs when a person viewing a visual scene apparently fails to detect large changes in the scene. For change blindness to occur, the change in the scene typically has to coincide with some visual disruption such as a saccade (eye movement) or a brief obscuration of the observed scene or image. When looking at still images, a viewer can experience change blindness if part of the image changes.
For those who are interested in this topic, here are a couple of other articles “‘The Grand Illusion’ — Believing We See the Situation,” “Neuroscience and Illusion,” “Brain Magic,” “Magic is in the Mind,” “The Situation of Illusion” “The Heat is On,” and “The Situation of Climate Change,” or click here for a collection of posts on illusion.