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See Inside The Science of Perception

The Eyes Have It [Preview]

Eye gaze is critically important to social primates such as humans. Maybe that is why illusions involving eyes are so compelling

FOCUS ON THE EYES
About 50 years ago Russian psychologist Alfred L. Yarbus tracked the eye movements of volunteers as they viewed photographs of human faces and found that most observers were primarily interested in the eyes shown in the portraits. But even though most of us pay close attention to the area of the face around the eyes, we are still forced to take lots of shortcuts when figuring out where someone is looking. These sensory shortcuts are what make us so vulnerable to visual illusions involving gaze.

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