Subjective Colors Online

Benham’s Top or Benham’s Disk involves the elicitation of a perception of colors by a rotating stimulus that is itself only black and white. A terrific online demo is available at this link [here]. My own experience is that at relatively high speeds, the inner bands are yellowish and the outer bands are blueish. Reversing the direction of rotation results in the colors switching locations.

Benham's Top

5 Responses to “Subjective Colors Online”

  1. I’m sorry. I only see black and white, also at high speeds.

  2. Pete Mandik says:

    I have to hit the “faster” button about 20 times to get noticably colored concentric rings. The colors are most intense after I’ve hit it 25 times.

  3. It’s Ok.
    +/- 50 times and I have seen yellow and blue rings.

  4. Peter van Diest says:

    A question that popped into my head when I saw the colours on the disk is the following: Would a Benham’s Top be allowed into Mary-the-colour-scientist’s room? And what effect would it have on the argument?

    Any comments?

  5. Pete Mandik says:

    Hi Peter,

    One thought that springs to my mind is that a Mary-type character would be in a better position to predict these odd experiences than a neuroscientifically un-educated character who had all the same types of phenomenal experiences. Thus would this Mary have more phenomenal knowledge than the other person in virtue of her objective neuroscientific knowledge.

    I’ve pursued this kind of line of thought in my “Hyperbolic Mary” available here:
    http://www.petemandik.com/blog/2006/11/17/hyperbolic-mary/