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back to article Famous 'Invisible Gorilla' trick vid gets sequel

The trick-cyclist who created a famous video in which viewers routinely fail to notice the appearance of a man in a gorilla suit among a group of people passing basketballs has produced a sequel. In the new basketball-tossing vid, a gorilla also makes a brief appearance, but some other mildly noteworthy events also occur. Many …

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Pint

In The Air Forces...

...this is called target fixation. The pilot get so concentrated on hitting the <insert enemy resource here> that he failes to notice the <earth|mountain|radio tower|etc.> in his path.

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Stop

tittle

same in motorcycle training, snowboarding and a whole host of situations.

But more importantly it often makes you steer towards the hazard instead of away from it subconsciously.

Ever eyed up a hot lady on the other side of the street whilst driving and afterwards realized you drifted on to the white line? That's target fixation too.

In snowboarding it can be about dodging people; if you're about to collide with someone, don't look at them look at your escape route. Near an edge? don't look down it, look at your intended path.

If you've had a good trainer whether it's car, bike, plane, skis, skates, boards... you'll have been taught about target fixation, hazards, escape routes and avoiding the avoidable. If you're good, you have high situational awareness making escapes routes quickly calculated instead of panicked or misjudged or just freezing up as many people do. For example you see blue lights in the rear view, you already know how to get out the way quickly without blocking others.

A classic example is rubber necking accidents and then hitting the car in front as it's slowed down without you noticing. Another is hitting the car in front at a roundabout which didn't leave when expected but you didn't check you because you were too focused on the roundabout traffic to make sure your lane was clear.

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Roundabout

The roundabout one's a bugger. I've had a few close shaves myself (both as potential crasher and crashee)..

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Cool

I found spotting the gorilla - even when forcing myself to genuinely count the ball passes - quite easy. Probably in part at least because I have read about this experiment recently in other sources too (though I had never got around to watching the vid before). Totally missed the two new changes. Though they were a little more subtle than the gorilla, but I guess that was to balance the fact that I (and most gorilla-savy viewers) was already primed for spotting unusual extra actors crossing the scene.

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FAIL

Meh

I missed the monkey in the original video but this one was just too easy. Spotted the gorilla, the player leaving, the colour change and still was able to count the passes.

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spotted the gorilla, obviously

but only spotted the player leaving, the curtain change escaped me completely :D

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Well...

...on the third play, I noticed the black player leaving the set, but I never noticed the colour change. But then, I couldn't even see it when it was re-played, as I'm colour blind. I think this test discriminates against my disability.

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Go

Now put it to good use .....

Why you shouldn't use a mobile phone when driving. See of you can spot the kid on the bike.

http://www.dft.gov.uk/drivingchallenge/

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MnM
Go

tyranny of the malcoordinated

I got the pass count right, and spotted the gorilla and the player leaving - so I'm ok to drive and phone. Which I knew already.

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FAIL

No kid on bike...

but I'd use headlights if it were that dark.

All I saw was a progress bar count to 100% twice (why twice?) in a completely black window. Oh, and heard a voice say, "please turn up your volume", but it sounded like an adult male, not a kid.

Is there supposed to be some sort of animation?

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Fail

I *did* notice the gorilla (and hadn't seen the original video). I also noticed that one of the black players had gone (but didn't notice when they left), ditto that the curtain had changed colour.

But I lost count of the number of times the white players threw the ball.

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Mabe if you are blind...

...you might miss it.

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erm

i saw the gorilla dn the player leave

but the curtain I got sub conciously when it got the end i had to rewind cause something looked wierd

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Boffin

All this "failing to spot out of place phenomena"

was old news, back when I was failing my psychology degree in 2001.

The story linked at the bottom about early morning coffee merely easing withdrawal symptoms was well known when I was still in school.

Sometimes I wish I had pursued a career in "science," as I'm quite capable of regurgitating the same old shit under a new heading.

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Anonymous Coward

The title is required, and must contain letters and/or digits.

"Sometimes I wish I had pursued a career in "science," as I'm quite capable of regurgitating the same old shit under a new heading."

that's called a career in psychology...

[and to the predictable responses to this ... no it's, not]

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Grenade

return volley

...and, is that nifty swifty Grand Unified Theory of Everything, promised as imminent several decades back, just about done yet?

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Paris Hilton

Erm.....

(on the assumption this is the right vid - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IGQmdoK_ZfY - player didn't load in here)

Sorry, but that is just retarded. Do people seriously not see the person leaving nor the curtain change colour? I think that begs more questions over the intelligence of the observer than the intelligence of the test - and would certainly hope that anyone who did miss that doesn't hold a driving license!!!

I was expecting something clever or subtle....

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Well done you!

You must be so proud.

Now read the article again, and see which subtleties on why this happens you yourself missed.

You are now the proud owner of the knowledge you are in the top 19% of people with OCD.

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Troll

We bow down to your *superiority*

If you noticed it, good for you but why do you attack those who didn't? Its rather childish..?

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Stop

but did you miss something?

It's easy to spot the changes if you're just watching the video. (what most people i know do).

However when you're actually focused on the counting, you tend to lose track.

You mention not missing anything, but did you still count correctly?

Not everyone can focus in many different directions and this test was aimed at people who were predicting the gorilla (so they knew they had to focus on two things).

Prior knowledge of any of the events make the test MUCH less likely to succeed.

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Unhappy

You spoilt it.

Now you told me stuff would happen you kind of spoilt the surprise.

And, you didn't say I was supposed to be counting the number of passes, so when it goes <SPOILER> "the answer is 16 passes </SPOILER> it's a bit of a different surprise, that I wasn't expecting, but it's sort of too obvious to miss...

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FAIL

RE: You spoilt it

RTFM, the beginning of the video tells you what you were suppose to be doing.

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Anonymous Coward

Expect the unexpected

The nearest approach the Guide makes to this matter is on page seven-thousand-and-twenty-three, which includes the words “expect the unexpected.” This advice has annoyed many Hitch-Hikers in that it is ‘A’ - glib, and ‘B’ - a contradiction in terms.

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Rubbish

The two events they point out are a bit pathetic. The curtain changing from red to orange over a few seconds isn't noteworthy enough to care about and the girl who left did so by using the gorilla as cover.

They miss the point of the original which inspired a reaction of "how on earth did I miss that?!?!". This is more a case of "how was I supposed to notice that?"

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Badgers

fun, but

Derren Brown bangs on about this all the time and uses it in his live shows

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Damn

Saw the gorilla and the team member leave - didn't see the curtain change colour nor how many passes the white team made.

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WTF?

What?

There's no link to video? How so this is not on Youtube?

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Pint

It's embedded in the article

Therefore you either have flash blocked, or not installed. Therefore by default, you win :-)

Have a beer

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Happy

Thumbs up

@ Christopher P. Martin - you seriously see this as discrimination? Maybe I'm missing your irony, but this sounds like the worst kind of discrimination - the kind where the victim finds it because he's looking for it, as opposed to it being intentional in the first place.

@ Tony Barnes - congratulations, you made number one in my top 10 most arrogant statements posted on the internet this week, and the competition was pretty stiff what with the Tories trying to make us believe that 1) they actually know what Facebook is and 2) that they know how it works.

Personally, I think this guys work is great.

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WTF?

@ Andy Fletcher

Arrogant? lol - do you not think that this "illusion" is arrogant? Having fooled people previously with the gorilla (I never saw that until after reading this link, so couldn't comment on it's effect, from link I found it seemed childlike) - he then tries to pull the wool over their eyes with what I see as incredibly obvious changes?

Ok, things he could have changed that would have been hard (i.e. not completely and utterly bleeding obvious) to spot:

1. Hair colour of one of the assistants, changing whilst they are facing you for minimum visibility

2. Writing on the balls

3. Shoes on on of the assistants

4. Jewelery on an assistant

5. Ratio of men to women

6. Age of assistants

etc, etc, etc

I'm terribly sorry but someone walking off camera is very, very obvious. So is the background colour changing (except as above for the colour blind, though red/green ought to still have spotted it? My understanding on that is fuzzy).

I meant no arrogance in saying what I said, that is simply how I saw it. If indeed I am some sort of super-human for being able to spot what I think is the bleeding obvious, then I can only apologise for my unintentional "arrogance", as I certainly wasn't patting myself on the back, if anything I was wondering why on earth I'd bothered finding it on youtube and watching it...

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J 3

Arrogant but possibly stupid as well.

So, trying to save face after being spotted being a dick, Tony Barnes? Sorry it feels bad, but that's life.

Or maybe you're slightly psychopathic and do not consider, as most normal people would, that saying (and I paraphrase you here) "hey, I can do this; everyone who can't must be stupid" is neither arrogant nor the worst way to make friends and influence people.

After all, you did write something like "that is just retarded" (I assume you're talking about the test) and questions over the intelligence of people who can't spot the changes. How else should people understand those terms?

Oh, and just in time: I didn't see the color change or the person leaving.

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Stop

@Tony Barnes

Oh lord it's hard to be humble, when you're perfect in every way!

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Job Title

"Trick cyclist"? Are you kidding me? What the hell kind of job description is that?

How about "Professor Daniel Simons, experimental psychologist, cognitive scientist, currently at the Beckman Institute at the University of Illinois, formerly Harvard".

I know El Reg is dumbing down to a stupendous degree, but that was just insulting.

No I don't have any connection with him, just a large degree of respect for the very good work he's done, and I think he deserves proper credit for it.

"Trick cyclist". Sheesh...

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Happy

@Alex 64

It's called slang. Look it up. El Reg have used "trick cyclist" instead of "psychiatrist".

Take a look at http://www.trickcyclists.co.uk/ for example.

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WTF?

But ...

... What exactly does it prove - That if you are concentrating on something you may miss something else ?

Doesn't everyone already know that ? If there were something gobsmackingly surprising by this demonstration I might have been impressed.

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Joke

So...

<southpark>

Is what I perceive reality? Am I real?

</sp>

Just proves our brains are squishy sacks of crap. Roll on the Mind-linked, neural-net, augmented reality of the Culture please - I don't want to miss out on any hot Gorilla action due to "noise on the line" between my squishy neurons and low-res optics!

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Anonymous Coward

No problem

Somebody showed me this over the weekend. I'd never heard of the original video and I spotted the gorilla, counted the passes, noticed the girl had leave and saw the curtain changing colour.

Now I don't think I was being clever, but the gorilla walking on was blindingly obvious. That attracted my attention to the side of the screen where the girl walked off. If the colour change had started later in the video I think it may have been harder to spot. So what's the big issue?

Maybe I saw it all happen because my brain is a bit farked when it comes to certain visual things. I'm dyslexic. Might have a bearing. Might not. Have they looked for a connection?

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Happy

Did not see the gorilla

It might help that I did not read the article before looking at the video...

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Boffin

Shoulda pursued medicine

... because regurgitating old shit will get you a paper in J Am Soc Med, at least.

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Anonymous Coward

Obligitory Douglas Adams comment

But, more importantly, could this research lead to the development of a genuine 'Somebody Else's Problem' field?

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Happy

I saw it all

I saw the gorilla, the curtain change colour and the person leaving the scene. I also noticed the time on the girl's watch was quarter to three at the beginning, but jumped back to ten to one halfway through, the guy in the white shirt waving to the other guy, the camera operator scratching his ear, and the lighting rigger talking to someone on his mobile (couldn't see the number). But the elephant, now that was unexpected!

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But officer ...

.... when you're looking for a gorilla, you often miss other unexpected events.

That's my standard excuse after being pulled over.

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This explains ....

... Ballmer making announcements about product sales.

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Interesting!

I'd been aware of this 'target fixation' effect for a while specifically from playing high-speed PC and PS games. The effect is most pronounced in the excellent "Midnight Club" where you are dealing with oncoming traffic at high velocities. I'd developed a tecnique of looking 'past' or 'away' from the oncoming lights in order to avoid them, if I looked at them for too long then a collision was pretty much inevitable.

I didn't know this was a studied phenomena, however, and found this article quite illuminating!

For the record, I also spotted all the 'hidden' content as listed, but rather than being some sort of OCD sufferer (I don't seem to exhibit any other symptoms of such a disorder), I think that my...ahem... extensive (read addiction) playing of games for the last 25 years may possibly have honed my observational skills. Further evidence of this may lie in my driving theory/observation results (which I only took about a year ago, to my shame) where I passed with perfect 100% scores. Not blowing my own trumpet here, just commenting on how interesting this phenomena is!

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