Illusions and the Brain


Christina Madden

The Hand-swap Box is an illusion box is designed to trick two participants into seeing and believing that the other’s hand is their own.  In our ilusion,  the two participants are following and tapping the LED lights when they light up.  They are doing this at the same time that they are looking at the other person's hand in the mirror.  You may ask yourself, how does this illusion actually work?  The illusion only works well when there is time between "rest time" (when your finger is hovering over the LED strip) and "moving time" (when you move your finger onto the LED strip).  This gives the brain enough time to process the movement that is going on.  Once enough time has passed, you will start to believe that they other hand is your. 


Charlie DeLorey

Due to time constraints, I was unable to finish the box with LED strips going on every interior edge of the cube. I did put 4 strips of LEDs on 4 edges, so that I could have 2 effects. One is a solid colour of blue, and the other is the periodic turning on and off of the LEDs, which simulates movement.