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June 29, 2010

I came across an interesting question the other day.  What it basically boiled down to was this.  What if we don’t all see in the same colors?

Allow me to elaborate.  What if some people see green as red, or red as green?  What if they didn’t know because they were taught from a young age that this is red.  As far as they knew it would be normal, nothing would seem strange to them.  Seeing it any other way would be strange.  What if you are the one who sees colours backwards…..or me?  How would we ever know.  I mean, have you ever tried to describe a colour?  Short of saying it’s the colour of something?

Apparently there is a theory or argument based off of this called Inverted Spectrum, which dates back to John Locke.  It’s an interesting proposition to say the least.

This led me to another interesting read.  Which is a study of colour from the folks at xkcd, which is absolutely hilarious comic strip if you’ve never read it.  This was a mind-boggling study on colour and how people perceive colours.

[On a side note.  Can we get a Canadian version of the WordPress spell check so I don’t keep second guessing my spelling on things like colour?  Is that so much to ask?]

Back to my point.

I’ll throw in a quick quote followed by a pic from their post and let you decide whether you want to read more of it here.  I warn you, it’s a little long but, the first half of it can be pretty hilarious.

First, a few basic discoveries:

  • If you ask people to name colors long enough, they go totally crazy.
  • “Puke” and “vomit” are totally real colors.
  • Colorblind people are more likely than non-colorblind people to type “fuck this” (or some variant) and quit in frustration.
  • Indigo was totally just added to the rainbow so it would have 7 colors and make that “ROY G. BIV” acronym work, just like you always suspected. It should really be ROY GBP, with maybe a C or T thrown in there between G and B depending on how the spectrum was converted to RGB.
  • A couple dozen people embedded SQL ‘drop table’ statements in the color names. Nice try, kids.
  • Nobody can spell “fuchsia”.

Here are some of the funnier answers, these are people trying to give the names of various colours.  Needless to say after answering a few hundred out of the 954 questions it might start to drive you a little batty…

Sorry for spazzing earlier, I think I had a seizure. Ummm dark red.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. July 1, 2010 7:41 am

    Brian! That was such a funny great post! Ha! I love the idea of color–or uhem, should I say colour? Whenever I tend to describe a colour, I tend to go with more of a feeling. like RED is warm or something like that. But, I guess after answering all those questions, yeah, I’d be a bit more than batty at that point! Ha!

    Real interesting. Thanks for the links (this is so my kind of stuff!).


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