The dress

how to see the dress both ways

Since those differences in the properties of the eye are compensated through experience and interaction with the visual environment, it is unlikely that they can explain the differences in perceiving the colour of the dress in that photo.

Conway thought the reporter was exaggerating, saying, "I didn't appreciate the full extent of what was about to happen. The light hits the retina in the back of the eye where pigments fire up neural connections to the visual cortex, the part of the brain that processes those signals into an image.

the dress illusion

In reality there is — most of the time — sufficient information about the illumination that allows for separating both factors, surfaces of objects and illuminations.

In particular, the colours in that photo do not appear like illuminated surfaces in a real scene, but like a self-contained, artificial configuration of colour patches.

The third set of colours. What is the real colour of the dress? Irreversibility of interpretation. In another, it looks yellow-white.

Meanwhile, when Conway woke up the next morning, his inbox had so many emails about the dress that at first, he thought his email had been hacked, until he saw that the bulk were interview requests from major media organisations.

I see the dress as blue and gold

However, disagreements about the colour of the dress also happen for observers that are all not colour deficient. However, such technical variations seem not to be a good explanation because observers even disagree about the colours of the dress when they look from the same perspective at the photo displayed on the same screen. Adobe retweeted another Twitter user who had used some of the company's apps to isolate the dress's colours. Scientific work is ongoing. Even in the year since and with a million different people trying to replicate it, nothing has come close. In particular, the colours in that photo do not appear like illuminated surfaces in a real scene, but like a self-contained, artificial configuration of colour patches. In the image as presented on, say, BuzzFeed, Photoshop tells us that the places some people see as blue do indeed track as blue. Other people attribute it to the dress. Colour samples from the dress. Technical reasons. Moreover, gold fabric is glossy in a way that black fabric cannot be. The brain.

Apart from the eye, the brain plays a major role for enabling perception. At least we can all agree on one thing: The people who see the dress as white are utterly, completely wrong.

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Here’s why people saw “the dress” differently.