Published: The scientific American, scientificamerican.com
Level of Difficulty: *****
BEFORE YOU READ
- Have you ever watched a magician perform; either on stage or on television?
- How exactly do magicians trick people; is it dexterity, lack of concentration on the part of the audience or is there some other reason?
- Have you ever wondered whether there is a scientific explanation for why magicians are able to trick us?
KEY TO QUESTIONS AND VOCABULARY
1. a. Neural adaptation / a rebound response or an after discharge b. Temporary blindness
2. A combination of the two.
3. Because they could have advanced much faster had investigators probed magician’s intuition earlier.
4. The tools of magic.
5. Overt, Covert. Covert misdirection is further divided into two categories; intentional blindness and change blindness. There are two kinds of change; expected and unexpected.
Examples are as follows:
Overt: The great Tomsoni……….
Change blindness: The color changing card trick.
Intentional blindness: The basketball example.
You might want to ask them for examples of their own for the remainder to test their comprehension further.
6. In order to be able to adapt the artistry of magic to neuroscience.
7. The magician’s head and eye movements (the shortest) / Implied and real motion activate similar neural circuits OR the previous sentence, OR the final position of…………………………..
8. Adjusting his glasses or scratching his head.
9. Unspoken assumptions/ Implied information
10. The latter; due to choice blindness.
11. Sweeping a curved path / Tracing a fast linear path
12. a. Eye control by the mark’s pursuit system; the saccadic system taking the lead/ b. The center of the mark’ vision may be drawn away from the location of a hidden theft; the pickpocket gains the advantage that mark’s vision is suppressed while the eye darts from point to point.
13. The fact that A causes B./ Make it seem that A causes B.
14. The anterior cingulated cortex may be important for interpreting causal relationships.
Becoming bright again
Use (it is a verb)
The sentence will vary
Make use of, benefit from
Studied in depth
No, not essential; we get a rough idea anyway.
Hides it, causes it to vanish