Today (15/11/13) I had a Digital Literacy session on the concept of Perception. I was wary as to what this session would bring.
What would you say Perception is? Is it the way we view something in our eyes or is it to do with our viewpoint on a certain topic?
Did you come up with any of these? Perception is all of these depending on the situation in hand.
Steve Wheeler placed a ball under a glass and told us to move it from one table to the other. Easy task. Pick it up and move it. However, the rules stated that we had to only touch the glass and the glass must still be upside down. I had already seen this trick a few years back but the rest of the group hadn't. Everyone had the same look of confusion. One of my classmates came up with the idea of spinning the glass so the ball span inside and moved it like that. It was interesting to see how she looked at the glass and imagined how she would move the ball across to the other table.
Carrying on with the lesson we got told to draw 9 dots on our pages just like this:
We then had 4 lines and had to connect all the dots. But yet again, we were given more rules.
1) Can't take the pen off the paper
2) 4 lines only
3) Can't go back over the lines
4) Can cross through lines
5) Must cover all the dots.
Looking around the room everyone seemed stumped trying to connect all the dots together. I could feel myself getting more and more frustrated with this task as at first glance I thought it would be rather simple. Steve decided to show us on the board exactly how to do it and this is the result.
The whole class "ahh'd" at this. When we looked at the nine dots we all saw a square and attempted to draw that. That was our perception of what we were seeing on the paper in front of us. We made up our own rules. Not once did Steve saw "you can't go outside of the dots" or "it must be a square" but as soon as we saw the dots form a square shape we all thought that's how it must be joined.
When looking on this website "http://www.clevelandconsultinggroup.com/articles/gestalt-principals.php" I found the following quote:
"Although individuals are capable of holding in mind two different or opposing patterns, one or the other will dominate depending on the environment or context (Brytting & Trollestad, 2000, p. 70)".
This made me think about what I had done whilst trying this task. As I was looking at the nine dots I only saw the obvious square pattern as my mind fixated on this shape, along with everyone else. However once the triangle had been drawn on I can now see that this shape holds more than just the simple square. It can be rotated to become a diamond also for example. This has given me a lot to think about as it is now allowing me to see more than what I already do.
I spoke to a few people tonight about Perception and how we perceive the world and someone told me about this theory that he had heard elsewhere. This really made my head spin.
Think of the colour red. Are you thinking of it? Good. Describe it. Can you? It's not that simple is it? Try looking online for a definition. It simply states where it is on the colour spectrum and words that relate such as "fiery" or synonyms.
This is from a man on YouTube under the name of "Vsauce" with a video labelled "Is Your Red the Same as My Red?" He describes colour as an "illusion". He then continues on to explain that "colour is created inside our heads". How do we not know that our perception of colour is completely different to each other? We can't jump inside another person to see - we simply agree a colour is blue or green or yellow. But when I see a yellow banana you may be seeing what I see as green, but you classify it as yellow.
Even as I am writing this I feel very confused. So I shall leave you with that thought. Do I see something completely different to you just because of how I perceive it? Or do you see the same?