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Lecture 5

Lecture 5 - Colour Vision

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Christine Burton

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Colour VisionSeeing in ColourEnirches our livesnicer to look at thingsTheoryallowed primates to distinguish edible from nonedible fruitsGenerally group colours into four colour categoriesbut we canidentify over 1MColour perception is universaldespite different categorizationsin different languagesoWe just different uses for colour namesThe way we use language influences the way we think about the worldso using different languages to name colour would influence how we seecolourSome colours are easier to name than others everyone agrees onthem these are highly codable coloursTypical experiment to investigate colour naming practices is to showpeople chips of colours point to the ones youve seen previouslyHighly codable colours are easy to recognize for English speakers There was no difference between English and Dani coloursstilltreated colours the same wayHumans seem to be built to perceive certain focal colours different wavelengths different colours to usoShortviolet longredWhat we see is light light hits the surface and carries it to our eyesWe see colour because different sized wavelengths enter our eyes700 nm red 400violetSingle wavelength entering our eyes look like a single colourpurecolour aka monochromatic or spectralObjects themselves are not colournothing in an object has acolour they have molecular properties that cause some wavelengths tobe absorbed and some to be reflected the colour we seeoWhite light has all the colours hits an objects and allwavelengths except 600nm are absorbed so we see yellowThe reason we see bananas as yellow because we have been built topick up that infooCertain receptors pick up info and our brain interprets it as yellowoBees can see ultraviolet light but humans cant see this lightoNothing coloured about objects or wavelengths we perceive a colourbecause our brain is built that wayExperimentobserve blue shirt dim lights shirt not so blueanymorenothing changed about the shirt nothing changed about thewavelengths what changed was that it was dark which means we are notusing our cones not effective in dark If cones arent workingcolour disappears so colours are psychological or perceptualColour VisionMost objects display selective reflectionthey absorb mostwavelgnths and reflect someoBlue most reflect short wavelengths green reflects medium wavelengthsTransparent objects display selective transmissioninstead ofreflecting light goes throughAchromaticwhite black grey reflect all colours equallyoThe difference is the amount of light reflectedwhite reflects alot black absorbs alloDont have selective reflection
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