Scary: We're all walking blind ...

... No really.
According to an article published in New Scientist, the average human loses about 6 seconds of information per minute due to blinking.
That's pretty amazing considering how the numbers add up. Take, for example, a typical person with a waking time of about 16 hours. Using the 6 second rule, they're missing out on a staggering 96 minutes of visual information every day. Math nerds, feel free to check me on this, but I think I did the equation right.
So what's going on when your waking brain is on a visual holiday? Well, I'd like to think it's the special time when elves from the parallel 11th dimension visit our world, steal our shoes and Slim Jims and roast bratwurst sausages on our grills, but ... unfortunately it seems the actual answer is a bit simpler. Your brain's just trying to process all that visual data it's taking in.
And most humans process this visual data in remarkably similar ways. The study, conducted by researchers at the University of Tokyo, discovered that, in groups, people tend to unconsciously adapt collective blinking patterns.
Researchers studied subjects during movies and found they tended to blink nearly in unison. They would hold back their eyelids during intense action sequences so as not to miss a moment, but when the drama died down, they'd nearly all breathe (or blink, in this case) a collective sigh of relief.
Oh and on a sidenote, if you feel scandalized about the rising price of movie tickets - here's some more salt to rub in the wound. You know that 150-minute film you paid $10.50 for? Well you're going to miss about 15 minutes of it due to blinking. Sorry.

Journal Reference: http://rspb.royalsocietypublishing.org/

No comments:

Post a Comment