Is The Dress Blue or White? Why The Internet Just Lost Its Mind

LordLundar

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Apr 6, 2004
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It's not even an optical illusion. It's a piss poor photo taken by someone that would flunk a first year photography class with it.
 

lacktheknack

Je suis joined jewels.
Jan 19, 2009
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The Rogue Wolf said:
Also, I'm amused how many people will say "Well, I see it this way, and so obviously that's what it is, and anyone who says otherwise is just stupid".
No one likes to believe their senses are screwing with them.

Me and a group of people were just looking through a sheet of color-blind tests once, and one of the guys actually was red-green color-blind. He got really quite upset about halfway through and started insisting that we were trolling him with what we saw versus what he saw, even though he knew he was color-blind.
 

Lightknight

Mugwamp Supreme
Nov 26, 2008
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I just figured it out. Some of you are hinting at it. This is basically the color equivalent of those bunny/duck optical illusions. It actually changes depending on how you look at it.

http://socrates.berkeley.edu/~kihlstrm/images/Jastrow/Squiddoo_draft_lens5293602module39884272photo_1244962799rabbit-or-duck-illusion.gif

This morning I could have sworn that I saw a white and gold dress. Then, upon seeing it next to the other dresses I couldn't see how that would be possible at all. How did I ever see white and gold even a little bit? Then I red the following stating that people who see white and gold are trying to accomodate for poor lighting:

http://www.buzzfeed.com/claudiakoerner/this-might-explain-why-that-dress-looks-blue-and-black-and-w#.ogxgY3rzYz

I remembered saying that I thought it was in shade. But looking at the picture when it looked black and blue it didn't look like it was in shade at all.

So I stared at the image for a bit, trying to imagine it as if it were in shade and BAM, it suddenly looked white and gold again. Just like those optical illusions where you suddenly see it the other way.

So there you have it, it isn't wavelength or the way you view colors. It's actually an honest to goodness optical illusion. However, i can't see the blue and black dress again unless I view it along side the other dresses in the picture I linked above. I can look at that for awhile and then go back to the image by itself and repeat the shifted optical illusion. This is fascinating.
 

floppylobster

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Oct 22, 2008
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Yesterday I had been seeing it as gold & white. This morning when I woke up I saw it as blue & black.

Just now, my cat walks in the room and I follow her out on a sunny balcony. I walked back in and looked again, and the dress was gold & white again. So I close my eyes for a couple of minutes (as they were when i was sleeping), my irises narrow, and it returns to blue and black.

It's to do with the aperture of your iris when you look at it. If you're seeing blue and black look into a light source for a few seconds until your pupils dilate. Then look at it.
 

medv4380

The Crazy One
Feb 26, 2010
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Eclipse Dragon said:
"So people either discount the blue side, in which case they end up seeing white and gold, or discount the gold side, in which case they end up with blue and black."
So what am I doing when I see blue and gold?

It's a fun little eye experiment, but did people seriously lose their shit over this?


Edit: For anybody who wants to test they're eyes to see how well they see color and in what areas they may be lacking. The Online Color Challenge [http://www.xrite.com/online-color-test-challenge] is a fun thing to do when you're bored.
Yes people do get angry, but it's understandable.

Imagine someone telling you the sky was green when you know it to be blue. You'd think they were Joshing you and being a bit of a prat. Now imagine half of everyone in a room being in disagreement over the color of the sky. We assume that other people think just like use, and have the same experiences. The contradiction, if you're unaware of the possibility of the illusion, results in cognitive dissonance that makes people think the other is being overtly dishonest with them.
 

Lightknight

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Nov 26, 2008
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floppylobster said:
Yesterday I had been seeing it as gold & white. This morning when I woke up I saw it as blue & black.

Just now, my cat walks in the room and I follow her out on a sunny balcony. I walked back in and looked again, and the dress was gold & white again. So I close my eyes for a couple of minutes (as they were when i was sleeping), my irises narrow, and it returns to blue and black.

It's to do with the aperture of your iris when you look at it. If you're seeing blue and black look into a light source for a few seconds until your pupils dilate. Then look at it.
Yeah, seeing it as white and gold certainly seems to be the brain accommodate for shade. If you compare the dresses (even though they're only one dress) you'll note that one looks like it's in the shade (gold and white) and the other doesn't (black and blue).
 

Johkmil

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Apr 14, 2009
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After being out in the bright mountain light, reflected by the snow, I was entirely unable to see anything else than white/pale blue and gold. Now, in nighttime, the stronger blue has appeared. Although I cannot be certain this is not some elaborate hoax using two different pictures of the dress.
 

CrystalShadow

don't upset the insane catgirl
Apr 11, 2009
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Oh, for the love of! It's back to gold and white. This thing is cursed. Cursed I tell you! XD
 

(name here)

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Oct 8, 2010
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For me it looked like blue and gold, though I was also able to see it as a white and gold dress photoshopped in from a picture taken in a blue-lit room.
 

Baresark

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Dec 19, 2010
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mad825 said:
Baresark said:
People look at the same picture on the same monitor and see different things.
Wow, that's some amazing scientific evidence!! Did you learn that at school? Is it also a scientific fact that apples taste good?

You have yet to overcome bias let alone overcoming the fact that it's bloody insane to establish someone's colour blindness on a computer monitor.
Excuse you? You don't believe it, that's fine. But you clearly do not even know what pseudoscience is. It has nothing to do with color blindness. That is a direct result of cone cell variations. This has nothing to do with that. This is about perception but I wouldn't expect you to understand anything.

I don't care if you are on board or not, I'm only telling you what other people have reported. My own girlfriend and her coworkers were having a fun day fighting over this, all from the same image on her laptop and people reporting seeing different things. It's a damn optical illusion, not pseudoscience. It's neurology, not variations on cone cells.
 

Sniper Team 4

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Apr 28, 2010
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Lightknight said:
I think the images that we're shown differ. This one looks blue with darker gold/tan/black. The one I was shown this morning looked absolutely white and gold. I think some people are seeing a white-balanced version of this picture:

http://www.wired.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/Untitled-12.jpg

The one I was shown first was the one on the far left. That still looks mostly white (but light blue) and gold while the middle one is clearly blue and black (or dark gold like it appears around the neck).
Oh man, thanks for putting those pictures up. I was looking at the one in this article and trying to figure out how you could possible get blue and black out of that picture. But then, I saw your three pictures and for just a second, maybe even half a second, the one in the middle darkened enough that I could briefly see the trick. Otherwise, I was just going to go nuts trying to see this.
This is pretty freaking cool.
 

Hagi

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Apr 10, 2011
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Sniper Team 4 said:
Oh man, thanks for putting those pictures up. I was looking at the one in this article and trying to figure out how you could possible get blue and black out of that picture. But then, I saw your three pictures and for just a second, maybe even half a second, the one in the middle darkened enough that I could briefly see the trick. Otherwise, I was just going to go nuts trying to see this.
This is pretty freaking cool.
Genuinely curious, do you see the top colors here also as white and gold?

 

Hero in a half shell

It's not easy being green
Dec 30, 2009
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Shanahanapp said:
Weird. Looked once and it was white and gold. Looked again a couple minutes later and it's blue and black. And now it won't change back.
I put this into photoshop and zoomed into the specific pixels to confirm it is a very light blue, and a strong gold colour. I was about to write a comment about how while the blue is perfectly true, the black is absolute nonsense, then after about 10 minutes I went back into photoshop and... It's dark blue and pure black.

BOLLOCKS! How did it change?!?
When I zoom into the dress pixels the blue is definitely interpreted by my eyes as being several shades darker than I know it was several minutes ago. The gold is just black. It's just black.

I remember all those hipster posts of "Dude, how do we, like, not know that we see all colours differently, so what someone considers blue could be green to someone else?" And I just don't know anymore.

Curse you eyes! You have betrayed my trust.
 

FalloutJack

Bah weep grah nah neep ninny bom
Nov 20, 2008
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As has been stated, it's a screwy image fault and people are up in arms over it.

What the dress IS...is ugly. It wouldn't flatter the woman wearing it, in my opinion.
 

VanQ

Casual Plebeian
Oct 23, 2009
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Still doesn't explain why I see purple and brown. Is it because I work day and nights and am some unholy hybrid of daywalker and nightwalker?
 

Strazdas

Robots will replace your job
May 28, 2011
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Why does this dress look white one moment, and blue the next?
It looked white. so i had to doublecheck. Photoshop confirmed that its blue and gold.

We like to think our eyes can be trusted above all else
no, our eyes are actually quite horrible because we never fully evolved to see above-ground unlike some other mammals. this is why human eyesight, as much as we rely on it, are inferior to many other animals. our eyes have many flaws. they are actually horrible are representing "reality". yet we rely on them a lot.

Editor's Note: An earlier version of this story said the dress was blue and gold, which was a misreading of one of the quotes from our source. The dress is actually blue and black and the story has been updated. We blame the llamas.
well then blame the camera operator because the actual RGB color in that picture is 120:106:67 which resolves to a brownish gold. (of course with variation for shadows). the blue area resolves to 128:140:178 which is light blue. if the dress was not blue and gold then the camera taking the picture has failed.

TopazFusion said:
Rest assured, the dress is actually blue and black, as the image from the dress's online store page confirms:
I put it on photoshop exported the color and made a new image that was filled entirely with that single color, so no contrast illusions. the colors of the image is blue and gold/brown. if the dress does not match the problem exists with the photo camera and not the eyes.


Silentpony said:
I don't get it. I saw Blue and gold instantly, showed it to my roommate, he say blue/gold and then his girlfriend also saw blue/gold(Although to be fair she said either gold or metallic yellow)
You guys sure this isn't just a taco news that got you? That the joke is there is no joke? That it's just a picture of a dress and someone is telling you it changes colors.
thumbnail looked blue and gold. image looked white and gold. doublechecked in photoshop - blue and gold.

Hagi said:
Genuinely curious, do you see the top colors here also as white and gold?
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/B-z93DwW0AAvn4G.jpg:large
People who are used to taking pictures will "auto-correct" it as just having horrible white-balance which is exactly what it initially looks like. and if you actually correct that with idea that it is white you get the left picture from Lightknight.

as far as gold part goes, its quite clear that the "Grey" ones are picked from shadows. the yellow one is what the non-shadow portion of that dress looks like. its not gold, but its brownish yellow.
 

josephf5

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Feb 21, 2015
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If the dress is actually blue and black, then the explanation given for why people see it as different colors makes no sense. The explanation given is that your eyes either dismiss the blue part or the gold part, and that people who dismiss the blue part see white and gold while people who dismiss the gold part see blue and black. But if the dress is actually blue and black instead of blue and gold, then that would mean that there is no gold part to dismiss, and that some people are just seeing the dress correctly while others are not for seemingly no reason.

In other words, the Editor's Note for this article dismisses the entire article.