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Saturday, September 27, 2008

fun test: do women concentrate better than men?






Below is a video of a one minute concentration / perceptual test
from the research of Daniel Simons, Ph.D.*
at the University of Indiana.



See how well you do on the test.


But before viewing the test, take this poll.








Now test your concentration. View the video clip, below.



Now comes a second poll.


Complicated, multi-part blog post, I know.


Try to keep up.










According to one source, and I can't verifiy it's reliability, about half of people who view this video do not see the gorilla due to the phenomenon of "inattentional blindness." My husband SAM said "put a nekkid woman in there and I bet people wouldn't miss it." Ah. He'd sweep up the research grant money with that proposal.

Inattentional blindness may help explain the higher rate of car accidents by cell phone users. It may also explain why lifeguards have trouble seeing bodies at the bottom of the pool. Finally, and I have no reference for this, it may explain why my daughters never see their dirty socks strewn in the middle of the playroom floor.



To learn more about inattentional blindness, read a summary written by Daniel Simons here.


*Simons, D. J., & Chabris, C. F. (1999). Gorillas in our midst: Sustained inattentional blindness for dynamic events. Perception, 28, 1059-1074.

12 comments:

therapydoc said...

Sorry, can't concentrate right now. Catch ya' later :)

isabella mori said...

thank you for posting that. i had seen something like that before but once again, i tried to be a good girl, focused on the passes and didn't see the gorilla.

i would place this type of research on the top ten psychological things we need to pay attention to. (hopefully no EXCLUSIVE attention! :)

Kelli Busey said...

Brilliant. I missed the Gorilla completely then I voted wrong on the second poll question. By that time I had forgotten about the video and was scratching my muzzle and asking myself, who can't see THIS gorilla(in the pic). Silly girl fool me once ha.

Health Psych said...

I saw the gorilla but only because I'd given up trying to count passes!

FeministGal said...

i was one of those who must feel included in your poll even though i've seen the video before in psych classes :)hehehe. BRILLIANT though! I love this phenomenon :)

phd in yogurtry said...

therapydoc -- ok, catch you next time

isabella -- I agree, its important research, especially re cell phone drivers

kelli -- confused you all the way around, huh?

hp -- I saw the gorilla just as it was exiting. I think maybe b/c I heard the laughter

feministgal -- I'd never seen it before. Must have been before my time, in school.

Mrs. G. said...

No gorilla for me.

apathy lounge said...

Bummer! It says video not available.

JCK said...

The video was no longer available. Just off the top of my head I would say that men concentrate better. I say this because they focus on one thing and have deep concentration. We tend to multi-task and my guess is that we have more trouble concentrating because we are thinking of so many things. I did not see the gorilla...

flutter said...

Well I was thinking about this and ooooh butterfly!

Reluctant Blogger said...

Excellent. I didn't see it but I know I have tunnel vision and always focus solely on the task in hand. I don't notice anything around the periphery (or walking straight through the middle) of that at all. I never notice if people change their decor or blog design for instance because I only concentrate on what they write.

Fascinating.

e.beck.artist said...

OH MY GAWD ...

i was certain that it was going to be a gender thing ... and i was either going to prove my sex right, and count the right number .... or .... prove that the test was wrong and that this woman was as attentive as any man ....

and then?

i missed the gorilla ... entirely .....

and feeling a bit like an idjit!