Archive for the ‘Psychological Articles’ Category

Psychological Article: Types of Online Optical Illusions

Sunday, March 15th, 2009

Literal Online Optical Illusion: How many feet do you see?

Literal Online Optical Illusion: How many feet do you see>


Psychological articles tell us that Optical illusions, or misperceived sensory signals, are categorized into three main types. First are literal optical illusions which are images different from the objects which make them. Sometimes our brain focus on the figure or its background to prepare perceptions categorized as figure-ground illusions. Our mind often chooses to ignore what it wants in order to create meaning and beauty; hence it forms Typographical illusions by focusing on one detail at the expense of other.

Second are physiological illusions which are created by the effect of an excessive impression of a stimulus such as color, movement and brightness. A good example of this type is the afterimage made after the bright lights. The retina of the eye retains the strong impression of the intense stimulus long after it is gone or removed. But these images are not simply restricted to the retina’s role because there are motion aftereffects as well where people registering one direction of motion for some time may experience the illusion of opposite motion at the same time. This is usually experienced by people watching waterfalls and is therefore called waterfall illusion. It is commonly experienced by normal individuals in their day to day life and often young children are caught wondering about it.

Cognitive Illusion: Square A and B are identical shades of gray.

Physiological Illusion: Square A and B are identical shades of gray.

The third type of optical illusions is the cognitive illusions in which the brain and eye make bizarre inferences. These are a result of beliefs and assumptions about one’s surroundings and the world. Cognitive illusions are an attempt by our brain to organize sensations into something more meaningful. In order to do so, the brain figures out possible and probable matches to existing conscious and sub conscious stimuli and compares to stored cognitions in order to formulate reasonable explanations of perceptions. This organization is possible when the brain sensory system perceives the stimuli as a meaningful whole, or what psychological articles refer to as a Gestalt.

Cognitive Optical Illusion

Cognitive Optical Illusion

Cognitive illusions further branch out as Ambiguous illusions, which psychological articles explain are ways our brains encourage alternative interpretations of visual stimuli, while distorting illusions involves distortion of shape and size occurring because of conflicting images, Paradox illusions occur because of paradoxical cognitive impressions, and Fictional illusions are those which are perceived by only one person ad thus are usually referred to as hallucinations.

Cognitive illusions can also be based on the human ability to view 2 dimensional drawings in the depth of three dimensions. Similarly, movement illusions can occur, for instance, when we are riding a bike and things in our surroundings will appear to move, although they are stationary. This movement perception is caused by a chain of sensory illusions resulting from motion.

Another interesting fact about cognitive optical illusions is that the color and brightness constancy impacts the perception so much that it identifies the color as it is regardless of the amount of light. All these various types of illusions are experienced by adults and children in routine life and are a part of the normal human range of experience. However, psychological articles suggest that regular viewing of online optical illusions challenges and teases our brains and has a beneficial and stimulating effect!

Boomer Yearbook is a Psychological Articles-Informational Social Network Website for Baby Boomers and baby boomer generation! Create Boomer Yearbook Profile, Connect with old and new Baby Boomers, or expand your mind and ward off senior moments and elderly problems with dream analysis and online optical illusions and brain games provided by clinical psychologist Dr. Karen Turner. Join this website for baby boomers, stay informed, and let your opinions be heard.


Psychological Article: Difference between Hallucination and Optical Illusion

Sunday, March 15th, 2009

Psychedelic Optical Illusion

Psychedelic Optical Illusion

Psychological Article by

Why we do not see separate static images instead of moving, walking, talking people in the motion pictures? Why does the silver feel cooler than the table cloth at our dinner table? We often wonder and long for a logical reason. Psychological articles tell us these perceptions are due to illusions which are experienced by many and yet fully understood by few. Optical illusions are faulty perceptions in selected situations, conditions, and circumstances and can occur naturally in nature, or be purposely generated.

In both illusion and hallucination an individual is experiencing or viewing something that is not “objectively” real. Often illusions and hallucinations are confused as one or as being connected, however, psychological articles tell us there are several important differences. Our sensory receptors are designed to detect a particular form of energy in order to send signals to the brain. These signals are made meaningful as sensations and perceptions only when the brain interprets them. At times these interpretations can be inaccurate and create what we call illusions. Illusions show us something very different from the actual as they result from a poor interpretation of the sensory stimulus, but they can happen when the external stimulus is there. In short, optical illusions are a result of misperceptions or perceptions which are essentially different from the “external” reality.

Hallucinations on the other hand, are quite different from illusions. Illusions are usually mutually experienced by numerous people viewing the stimuli, while a hallucination is experienced by an individual. Where an online optical illusion is a misrepresentation of a stimulus, a hallucination is a “unique, phantom” perception without any external stimulus as a hallucination is a projection of something internally generated that doesn’t exist in external reality. Psychological articles inform us that oftentimes hallucinations result from a psychotic psychological disorder such as schizophrenia or a drug induced psychotic state from taking LSD or other hallucinogenic drugs. However psychological articles advise that a very mild form of a hallucination is nothing more than a mere disturbance and is regarded as normal, particularly if you have lost a loved one and hallucinate the loved one’s presence after the death. Hallucinations can cause an individual to see something which is not there, or to hear fictitious sounds or voices. When hallucinating, the conscious mind does not function normally; however, illusions are routinely perceived by the majority of people viewing the stimuli and are considered quite normal. Psychological articles stress that Optical illusions are normal, and do not indicate any mental or psychological disorder. As illusions are misperceptions perceived under specific conditions therefore animals can also be subjected to it. What a thought. Our beloved dogs and cats can also be tricked by optical illusions. Hmm, wonder what they see when watching TV?

Illusions can be tricky, enjoyable and interesting. Most magicians such as Harry Blackstone, Chung Ling Soo and Siegfried & Roy, employ slight of hand and optical illusions to achieve “magical” displays; and the stage distance enhances the believability of the optical illusions effects, such as sawing a woman in half and Lady-to-Tiger. But it is for us to understand that their audience was not having hallucinations; what they saw were optical illusions, false perceptions intentionally created for effect and entertainment.

Boomer Yearbook is a Psychological Articles-Informational Social Networking Website for Baby Boomers and baby boomer generation! Create Boomer Yearbook Profile, Connect with old and new Baby Boomers, or expand your mind and ward off senior moments and elderly problems with dream analysis and online optical illusions and brain games provided by clinical psychologist Dr. Karen Turner. Join this website for baby boomers to stay informed with weekly news feeds and to let your opinions be heard.


Creating Online Optical Illusions

Sunday, March 15th, 2009

Online Optical Illusions: Are these true squares?

Online Optical Illusions: Are these true squares?


Optical illusions can be a lot of fun. They can serve to test intelligence, measure differences of perception and also to understand how different minds work and respond to the same stimulus. Optical illusions can both be easy and difficult to make. One must keep in mind the purpose; get all essential resources, a fine place to work in and a fine well-defined plan.

One easy way of making an optical illusion is through marker drawing. All one has to do is to draw shapes within shapes with the chosen markers of selected colors. When we draw shapes within shapes the images will be there but they will become somewhat difficult to spot. This is where the fun of it lies! To make an optical illusion drawing you will need a drawing paper and markers. Whichever shapes you intend to draw keep your mind clear about your selection. And here’s a tip; it is advisable to draw shapes which allow more and smoother drawing in a flow without breaks. This will help create a more effective illusion. Draw one sketch of the selected shapes and then instead of filling these shapes up with color just keep drawing continuous lines in similar shape to fill the entire area. One idea is to write a familiar word and keep outlining it till it forms a complex shape.

Another interesting optical illusion can be made with colors. You can choose a paper plate and divide the area into three layers of triangles. Each layer must have a combination color scheme. Use a compass to draw circles for triangle layers. In the middle make two tiny holes with a paper puncher and insert light weight 26 to 30 inch piece of string, thread it through the two holes and then tie it carefully in a loop. Color your neatly drawn triangles with different poster paints. Remember to use primary colors such as red, blue and yellow with bold strokes of black. Hold the strings taut, then twist or spin them several times to see the magic of colors. You will see the colors blending and expanding as they spin. They will be creating some lovely new colors for you to see and appreciate.

Optical illusions help make great brain teaser art. Confused faulty perception poses challenges for the observer and is entertaining and stimulating. One comfortable way of making a brain teaser is to use a stencil to draw geometric designs on a drawing paper. You can draw grapes or a moth with a lot of circles. Draw circles within circles and use different colored markers to make it even more challenging. Keep a good count of the shapes you draw. Once you are done, ask a friend to count the shapes. It’s an easy bet that your friend will be stumped and fascinated by optical illusions created by background figures and shapes.

Boomer Yearbook
is a Psychological Articles-Informational Social Network Website for Baby Boomers. Connect with old and new friends, or expand your mind and ward off senior moments and elderly problems with dream analysis and online optical illusions and brain games provided by clinical psychologist Dr. Karen Turner. Join now to discover the many ways this Website for Baby Boomers can keep you informed and contribute to optimal physical and emotional wellness.


How to overcome the fear of dancing?

Friday, March 13th, 2009

Psychological Articles: Overcoming Fear of Dancing

Psychological Articles: Overcoming Fear of Dancing

Psychological Articles by

You are up on the dance floor with sweaty palms, looking nervously around you noticing how many eyes are scanning you and how many will smile or laugh at your moves. Your feet are cold, your heart is racing, and you wonder why you are the only one out there. Well, there is nothing to worry about. You are nervous and anxious because you are probably afraid of dancing; too many eyes are on you and who knows how they may judge your moves. These feelings originate from self-consciousness, lack of self confidence, shyness and maybe accurately assessed physical ineptitude. The good thing about it is that it can be dealt with quite easily over time, all one needs is strong determination and willingness to overcome the fear.

Psychological articles tell us the first step in overcoming this fear is to be among a friendly mob; hang out with a group of comfortable friends. It will help keep embarrassment in check. Secondly chose your dance partner carefully. The wrong partner, who may make you feel uncomfortable, can significantly mar the pleasure just as a good partner can increase the fun. Since you are dancing to gain confidence and overcome your fear, initially choose a supportive and kind friend until you gain confidence, and then gradually trade partners until you have reached a comfort zone.

Psychological articles further tell us that it is a good idea to take some lessons from a reputable dance studio (with your trusted friend) as it will boost your dancing skill and confidence. It is very important to know black from white in dance steps because if you know the game you can play it with style and ease. Besides a dance is supposed to bring pleasure and relaxation not fear and anxiety; clarify the purpose and objective behind your dancing until you are convinced it will bring fun not pain. Psychological articles also tell us that knowing the steps will help you project outwards and not dwell on your own appearance and body moves. Try not to think about how many people are around you, nor should you be thinking of how and why they are glancing in your direction. As soon as you train your mind to focus on your moves and enjoy the synergistic rhythm of your body and the music, dancing will become a pleasurable pastime. Who knows people around you might be finding your rhythm fantastic and be turning green with envy.

Another important fact to remember as you fight your fear of dancing is that you must choose your area on the dance floor carefully. Keep in mind your comfort. A spot which makes you nervous or is too crowded is a bad choice. An area too dark to correctly make out distances is also a bad choice. For a sensitive new dancer an area surrounded by too many strangers can also be unnerving.

Last but most important is that you must think well of yourself and never give up. Since impossible is nothing, it definitely is possible to overcome one’s fears. All of us are afraid of one thing or another at different phases of our lives. We at Boomer Yearbook hope you take some risks; banish fear and move out to that dance floor.

Boomer Yearbook is a Psychological Articles-Informational Social Networking Website for Baby Boomers and baby boomer generation! Create Boomer Yearbook Profile, Connect with old and new Baby Boomers, or expand your mind and ward off senior moments and elderly problems with dream analysis and online optical illusions and brain games provided by clinical psychologist Dr. Karen Turner. Join this website for baby boomers, stay informed, and let your opinions be heard.


Send In The Clowns

Tuesday, October 28th, 2008


by The GreyWolf

The election is just one week away…it seems like these candidates have been running since FDR left office.

You would think that these clowns would have run out of rocks to throw by now but noooooooooooooooooo……they just make things up…bend the truth and fire away.

Let’s see…..Who is a Muslim? (not true), who was born outside the US? (wrong), who0 is a BFF with an American terrorist? (not quite), who thinks that we should be in Iraq for the next 100 years? (nuh huh), who wants to turn this country into a Marxist dictatorship? (oh paleeeze), who spent $150,000 on her wardrobe? (nope), who is only now proud to be an American since her husband is running for president? (doubtful) and on and on and on. Very few Americans care about this stuff. We want to know…when will we be able to come home from the Iraq, when will the economy turn around, when will we be able to get a mortgage again, what will happen to our aging parents and how will they cope with the crisis of the cost of health care. When will unemployment go down and not up, what do we do about the energy crises (don’t get me started on this one).

See let’s get real here. John McCain and Barak Obama are both patriotic Americans who want the best for this country. The have different approaches…..very little of which will ever go into effect with the economic situation we’re in and the political climate we find ourselves in. Joe Biden and Sarah Palin….two very interesting characters. Sarah is a popular governor of a state with a very small population and small problems on the grand scale of things. Her state has a budget surplus thanks to the oil that can be found there. From all indications she is a great mom with old time conservative values. She is a very pretty woman that can get a crowd into the palm of her hand when she speaks but……….Vice President????

Joe…well what can I say about Joe Biden. He has never done anything but be a United States Senator being elected at the age of 29 (36 years). He has had a tough personal life but has, by all indications, risen above the tragedies that have befallen him. He is nice guy with a dazzling smile but (as one pundent put it) “has never had an unspoken thought”. He is quite frankly a loose cannon when it comes to his oratory skills. The thing about Joe is that what he says is true……not expedient……not smart politically…….but true none the less. Vice Presidential material …welllllll.

The bottom line is this……We have a very weak crop of candidates running…one of whom will be the president elect in a week. To hear the republicans tell it, Barak Obama will turn this country into a welfare state that will redistribute our wealth in line with the Marxist montra “from each according to his ability, to each according to his needs” and make us easy pickens for terrorists and terror states around the world. To hear the democrats tell it, John McCain will turn this country into a country with no soul that will leave the weakest of us in the street and our armies marching all over the world.

I think I’m gonna write in Mickey Mouse’s name, at least with him we’ll have a Magic Kingdom…….of course there is that questionable association with Donald Duck!!!

Who’s Paying For All This Stuff!!??

Sunday, October 26th, 2008


The news is filled with reports of the dire straits our economy is in. “Economic Downturn”, “Market Correction”, Recession”, “Energy Crisis”……..all flowery terms that mean the average American is being severely hurt financially.

Our paternal government is working diligently to help us all deal with the problems of rising unemployment, the credit crunch, bank failures rising prices at the gas pump and of course Islamic Militants. Our elected representatives have come up with so many great ideas it’s staggering:

- Sending billions of dollars in foreign aide that many times come back to
us in booby traps, rocket propelled grenades, foreign industrial growth
(displacing millions of our own workers) all fostering distrust and hate of the
American interlopers….

- Helping us all in the form of “economic stimulus checks” that will give
our waning economy a much needed shot in the arm and take us to economic
prosperity. Forget the fact that many of these checks are being used to catch up on
bills, pay those higher prices at the gas pump, pay those failing banks in
an effort to keep homes that were financed by greedy bankers without a thought
as to how the home owner can pay for their mortgage. Oh by the way…this
“stimulus” comes to us courtesy of loans from China….that we will pay back
with heavy interest. China…our number one rival in the world……the China
of toys and cosmetics with lead in them…the China of environmental disasters
to move their economy forward…the China of overwhelming human rights
violations….this could go on and on but you get the point.

- The politicians imploring us all to conserve oil…don’t drive so
much…take mass transit…..plan your trips…car pool. These same geniuses are now
telling us that tolls, the price for mass transit and gas taxes have to go up
because they are not collecting enough tolls and taxes because we have taken
their advice and are not driving as much as we used to.

- States and Cities all asking for tax increases because they can’t provide
services at the level they used to because they don’t have enough revenues.

The other day in the news I watched an official of the federal government
being interviewed. He was discussing some new government project (what the
project was is of no consequence). The interviewers asked “How will this project
be funded?” The official actually looked into the camera and said
“well……part will be paid for my the federal government…part by the states and the
rest by the taxpayer”…….HELLLLLOOOOO…..Where does this guy thinks ALL
this money comes from????

This is just an example of the governmental mind set that exists today. ALL
the money it spends comes from us the American Taxpayer. The payback on the
stimulus checks plus interest to China, the billions that go overseas, the
roads, mass transit, toll booths……(deep breath)

Anyway I have a novel idea… about…the government SPENDS LESS. Make
the same hard decisions that the American family has to make everyday. How
about they give us a break.

What do you think….talk to me.

But It Will Take Ten Years!! ?

Sunday, October 26th, 2008


Today I watched Al Gore on Meet The Press and for the first time I find myself in complete agreement with him on the issue of our country and it’s dependence on foreign oil.

When I was in grammar school the teachers told us that we are running out of oil and we need to find other forms of energy. The people in power at that time said that it would take at least 10 years for us to find alternate forms of energy and nothing happened. The price of a gallon of gas in 1955 was $.23 cents.

In the 1960’s the scientific community sounded the trumpet again…..telling us that we had around 50 years of oil left (an underestimate, as it turns out). During that time we began to feel the pressure from the middle eastern countries and the creation of OPEC, a cartel that fixed the price of a barrel of oil. The people in power at that time said that it would take at least 10 years for us to find alternate forms of energy and nothing happened. The price of a gallon of gas in 1965 was $.31 cents.

In the 1970’s OPEC got together and slapped us with an oil shortage. Long lines at the pump spilling over into the street, people only allowed to buy gas on odd or even days (depending on the last number on their license plate) Jimmy Carter came on TV in late 70’s sporting a sweater telling us to lower the thermostats settings in our homes….People clamored to find a way out. Those on power said that it would take a least 10 years before we could find alternate forms of energy and nothing happened. The price of a gallon of gas in 1975 was $.57 cents.

In the 1980’s our economy boomed. Ronald Reagan was president and a new American pride was taking over the country. OPEC was not quick to pressure us on pricing and we rode the economic wave with increased wages and a higher standard of living. Still in the background were the voices that warned us that oil was running out and that OPEC could put a strangle hold on us anytime that wanted to and that this robust economy was at their mercy, the people in power said it would take at least 10 years. Nothing happened. The price for a gallon of gas in 1985 was $1.20.

In the 1990’s we entered the DOT.COM era. Internet stocks rose like a rocket, the economy again was running like a clock and the price of a gallon of oil actually dropped to $1.15 in 1995. Unfortunately this era of Pox Americana was about to suddenly come to an end.

September 11, 2001, a day that will live in American history side by side with Pearl Harbor. We were attacked by Islamic Terrorists. We are all aware of how it happened and how we felt when we heard about it and watched it over and over again on TV. We responded first by attacking Afghanistan, the Taliban stronghold where the attackers were given safe haven and where training was taking place for additional attacks. Then we attacked Iraq. This attack has been criticized both at home and around the world. Based on what was found or should I say wasn’t found, namely WMD’s, this attack was dubious and seemed to galvanize a large portion of the Islamic world against American boots on the ground in the middle east. The price of a gallon of gas exploded. There were murmurings about finding alternate fuels, maybe a wind farm or two of the coast of Nantucket, Massachusetts, which the powerful Kennedy family ended quickly…..a clear Not In My Back Yard response. Many said it was time for us to make an all out effort to find alternative fuels…..find domestic sources of oil…..make more fuel efficient cars….but of course that would take at least 10 years to achieve…….

Today…in 2008 the price of gas is $4.25 a gallon! Fifty years have passed since my days in grammar school. Housing prices are dropping like a rock, banks are failing, unemployment is rising, inflation is rising. Bread, eggs, milk, produce, etc. pricing are rising at an alarming rate. In a large segment of our population a person can only buy 1-1/2 gallon of gas with the wage they earn per hour. All of the above effected by the price of oil!

What is needed is a Manhattan Project (the development of the atomic bomb during WWII) for getting us off the oil tap of the middle east.

Al Gore has challenged us to become energy independent using renewable, carbon free forms of energy such as bio-fuels, wind energy, solar energy, water energy and clean electric energy. It will require an all out effort from all us. It will require some sacrifices but they will be worth it.

Of course it’s gonna take at least 10 years……..

What do you think….talk to me.

Gays and the Military A Social Experiment????

Sunday, October 26th, 2008


Should Gay people be allowed to serve in the military……….of course they should. Gay people should be allowed to do anything and everything the rest of the population can do.

Should Gay people be allowed to serve “openly” in the military….I think not. We have to remember that the armed forces are not meant to be treated as a test tube to see how our social culture can evolve and change. These warriors train together, kill together, survive together, and live in very close proximity………..together.

The problem, as I see it, is the morale and comfort of the overwhelming majority of the men and women in our armed forces. There is no reason why each soldier needs to know the sexuality of their comrades. Sharing barracks, communal showers are all places where these men and women should be able to let their guards down and relax. Even if a gay soldier doesn’t act out in a lascivious way towards the straight soldiers…the mere fact that they are openly gay causes tension. I don’t see “don’t ask…don’t tell” as an abridgement of gays rights but rather an affirmation of the rights of the majority of our men and women that serve us so well.

There are those that will say that there are many countries where gay men and woman serve opening in their armed forces. This is true but ask these same people….when it is time for armed conflict….which army they want to do the heavy lifting…..there is no contest. America has THE best army on earth. Don’t ask….don’t tell has worked for over 230 years and has served America well. I see no reason to change this policy now.

Over the years there have been many gay soldiers, sailors, marines and airmen that have served this country with distinction. Their accomplishments have been as valorous people and there has been no need categorize them into gay or straight…they have been American patriots all.

If it ain’t broken….don’t fix it!

What do you think….Talk to me.

First Time….What to Expect ..The 2nd Amendment

Sunday, October 26th, 2008



After watching the morning news shows today I decided it was time for a fresh perspective on things. The talking heads all say the same things…to the same people…for the same reasons….ratings. Oh yeah there’s “gotcha” news shows but they just generate heat and rarely shed any light on things.

Here you can expect to read the way I see things….from a common sense perspective.

The Right To Bear Arms…….the 2nd amendment to the US Constitution….was in the news this week. The Constitution was, and is, a masterpiece in creating and protecting human rights of americans and provided the blueprint for the way our government is structured and the way it functions.

I have to admit that the words “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.” seems, on the surface, to give all individuals the right to have a firearm in every household. But I think these words viewed through the lens of the times in which they were written may give us all a little insight into the reason for such an amendment. During the time said amendment was written the United State of America had just recently won a war for independence from Great Britain. We had almost no national army to speak of and the chance of additional hostilities with other foreign powers was a very real possibility.

Our strength during our war for independence was the citizen soldier. Each rural family had a musket or two in their farm houses and were ready to react to the call whenever they were needed to contain or repel the British. The “well regulated militia” comment seems to refer to organized military units that can be called up at anytime when needed. The outgrowth of these military units today is the National Guard…..and Army Reserve. These units are comprised of well trained citizen soldiers that can be called up and moved at a moments notice (no endorsement of Iraq suggesed here). Today we also have an all volunteer military that is the envy of the rest of the world. The citizens are professional soldiers who perform magnficently when they are asked to go into harms way.

The reason for a musket in each household has passed. If there is a legimate need for a firearm it should be regulated, investigated and licensed. I know there are many that will say “the criminals don’t apply for licenses” and this is true but is not an overwhelming reason to arm everyone. Looking at the statistics around the world, of deaths by shooting should tell us that there’s a reason why the United States ranks #1 in these deaths. Statistics also tell us that households that have firearms, where a shooting takes place, in the vast majority of cases the person shot and many times killed is a friend or family member….not a ringing endorsement of “the right to bear arms”.

On a lighter note…..Archie Bunker (of All in The Family Fame) once wrote a letter to the then President Nixon outlining his ideas to curtail the fad of planes being highjacked and flown to Cuba. Archie said, to cut down on these people being able to divert flights to Cuba,we should “hand out guns to each passenger as they board the plane and then collect them them when the get off”. Good old Archie!

My point is this…..the time for a 2nd amendment, as written, has passed. The Constitution should be a living, breathing document that is fine tuned to the times. Maybe it’s time to add another amendment that will remove the ambiquity that the NRA continues to hang it’s hat on.

For those of you thinking…..I’m just another left wing liberal spouting my pinko ideas……let me busrt that bubble right now. I am conservative on most issues. I was a officer in the 82nd Airborne Division and received two Bronze Stars, an Army Commendation Medal for Valor and a
Purple Heart. The thing is I’m a conservative with some common sense.

Let me know what you have to say about this issue.

Talk to me.