Innovative Thinking – Do You See Spots – Blog 038

Can you count the black dots?  How many black dots are there?  Take your time.  You will be graded on this.

You see white dots?  So, there aren’t any black dots?  Which is it, black dots or white dots?  This is a standard
jpeg.  It is static and does not change.

I guess you’re seeing things again?  As long as you’re not seeing dead people, we can continue.

In the back of your eye, is your retina.  The retina is made up of two types of cells; rods and cones.  The rods are good for low light, low-frequency light, and black & white reception and the cones see color.  both nerve endings fire when hit by an appropriate photon of light.The light hits the cones or rods, activates the nerve and the nerve gets flooded with an electrolyte (acetylcholine) that completes the circuit for the nerve and sends an electrical impulse up the optic nerve to the vision center at the rear bottom of your brain.

Once the rod or cone nerve has been activated, the brain injects acetylcholinesterase to counteract the previous acetylcholine in preparation for the next electrical signal. This process happens 100 to 200 times per second on average.  It’s the amount of time for your eye to flush the electrolyte out of that nerve so it can see something new. The amount of flushing time it takes is the amount of time you still see the black dot.As the image is mostly black, your rods see black.  As your eyes move around they see the black until they have been flushed.  The amount of time is different from person to person.  Some people only see the dot for a millisecond, while others see it for a much longer time.  Either is OK.

I show this to prove once again, you can’t believe your own eyes.  Sometimes you see things that aren’t there and sometimes there are answers right in front of you and you physically can’t see them.

Now that you know your eyes continuously play tricks on you, you can be more aware of this fact and be more cautious when looking for that next solution.


“Sincere, Authentic, & Transparent. If you’re not transparent, people will see right through you.”

-Lon Safko


Lon Safko
Serial Innovator, Keynote Speaker, Trainer, Innovative Thinking


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