Do People Always See the Same Things When They Look At Colors?

Update: It looks like the video was taken down by the uploader. Sorry guys.

Color is simply how our brains respond to different wavelengths of light, and wavelengths outside the spectrum of visible light are invisible and colorless to us simply because our eyes can’t detect them. Since colors are created in our brains, what if we all see colors differently from one another? BBC created a fascinating program called “Do You See What I See?” that explores this question, and the findings are pretty startling.

For example, examine the two rings of squares below. Each ring has one square that’s a different color than the rest. See if you can detect the square that’s different in the left ring:

In the English language (and most languages), there are distinct words for “green” and “blue. Therefore, it’s very easy for most people to detect the blue square in the right ring, but difficult to detect the slightly different green square in the left one.

However, when scientists visited a tribe in northern Namibia that has a completely different way of grouping and naming colors, they found that the exact opposite was true — the tribe members picked out the slightly different green square easily, while struggling to see the blue one.

Furthermore, researchers are discovering that there are many other factors that influence the way people perceive colors, including memories, moods, and feelings.

It’s interesting to think that different people looking at the same photograph may “see” the same wavelengths but perceive different colors.