Harvard Psychological Studies, Volume 1 eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 678 pages of information about Harvard Psychological Studies, Volume 1.

11.  If the disc consists of a broad and narrow sector, and if the rod is broad and moves at first rapidly but more slowly with each new stroke, there are seen at first broad, faint bands of the minority-color, and narrow bands of the majority-color.  The former grow continuously more intense as the rod moves more slowly, and grow narrower in width down to zero; whereupon the other bands seem to overlap, the overlapped part being doubly deep in color, while the non-overlapped part has come to be more nearly the color of the minor sector.  The overlapped portion grows in width.  As the rate of the rod now further decreases, a confused state ensues which cannot be described.  When, finally, the rod is moving very slowly, the phenomena described above in paragraph 9 occur.

The successive changes in appearance as the rod moves more and more slowly, are due to the factors previously mentioned, and to one other which follows necessarily from the given conditions but has not yet been considered.  This is the last new principle in the illusion which we shall have to take up.  Just as the transition-bands are regions where two pure-color bands overlap, so, when the rod is broad and moves slowly, other overlappings occur to produce more complicated arrangements.

These can be more compactly shown by diagram than by words.  Fig. 10, a, b and c (Plate VI.), show successively slower speeds of the rod, while all the other factors are the same.  In practice the tendency is to perceive the transition-bands as parts of the broad faint band of the minor color, which lies between them.  It can be seen, then, how the narrow major-color bands grow only slightly wider (Fig. 10, a, b) until they overlap (c); how the broad minor-color bands grow very narrow and more intense in color, there being always more of the major color deducted (in b they are reduced exactly to zero, z, z, z).  In c the major-color bands overlap (o, o, o) to give a narrow but doubly intense major-color band since, although with one major, two minor locus-bands are deducted.  The other bands also overlap to give complicated combinations between the o-bands.  These mixed bands will be, in part at least, minor-color bands (q, q, q), since, although a minor locus-band is here deducted, yet nearly two major locus-bands are also taken, leaving the minor color to predominate.  This corresponds with the observation above, that, ’... the non-overlapped part has come to be more nearly the color of the minor sector.’

A slightly slower speed of the rod would give an irreducible confusion of bands, since the order in which they overlap becomes very complicated.  Finally, when the rod comes to move very slowly, as in Fig. 9, the appearance suffers no further change, except for a gradual narrowing of all the bands, up to the moment when the rod comes to rest.

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Harvard Psychological Studies, Volume 1 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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