Category Archive 'Color'

26 Mar 2015

25% of People Have a Fourth Cone (Color Receptor)

, , ,


Professor Diane Derval told me something today that I had not known.

The color nuances we see depend on the number and distribution of cones (=color receptors) in our eye. You can check [the above] rainbow: how many color nuances do you count?

You see less than 20 color nuances: you are a dichromats, like dogs, which means you have 2 types of cones only. You are likely to wear black, beige, and blue. 25% of the population is dichromat.

You see between 20 and 32 color nuances: you are a trichromat, you have 3 types of cones (in the purple/blue, green and red area). You enjoy different colors as you can appreciate them. 50% of the population is trichromat.

You see between 33 and 39 colors: you are a tetrachromat, like bees, and have 4 types of cones (in the purple/blue, green, red plus yellow area). You are irritated by yellow, so this color will be nowhere to be found in your wardrobe. 25% of the population is tetrachromat.

You see more than 39 color nuances: come on, you are making up things! there are only 39 different colors in the test and probably only 35 are properly translated by your computer screen anyway :)

I originally counted colors on the basis of differentiated rectangles I could see, which gave me too many. When I went back and looked strictly at color gradations, I got 39. And I do hate yellow.

Hat tip to Chico Kidd,

27 Feb 2015

What Colors Are This Dress?

, ,


Everybody on Tumblr seems to be arguing today about the color of the above dress. Buzzfeed

I don’t see what the argument is all about, it looks perfectly obvious to me, but my wife likes this kind of thing so I felt obliged to blog it.

The Dress That Broke the Internet

Gizmodo solved it.

24 Jun 2012

Language & Colors

, , , ,

The Crayolification of the World, Part 1:

Different cultures and different languages recognize colors differently. In Japan, the traffic light we describe as green is referred to as blue.

Over time, new names have been invented for particular portions of the color continuum and, voilà, a new color was created.

Brent Berlin and Paul Kay began studying how 98 different languages name colors in the late 1960s.

Curiously, the differentiation of colors seems to proceed in stages, with various languages stopping at varying points in the same process of differentiation.

Of course, how we differentiate colors is, in the end, based on our physiological capabilities. Some other species with different eyes could differentiate fewer colors; some others far more.


Part 2:

We then come to the Sapir-Whorf hypothesis, which holds that language determines how people conceptualize the world.

Koreans are familiar with the colors yeondu and chorok, both light green, but yeondu is a more yellowish light green. Looking at color charts, Koreans are found to differentiate yeondu from chorok quicker than Westerners who don’t speak Korean leading cognitive psychology types to infer that what must be happening is that the language-oriented portion of brain must be joining in to assist the visual perception of the Koreans.

This matches the results of experiments showing slight differences is the speed of color identification acuity between our right and left sides.

And apparently once children learn the names of colors, the advantage in speed changes from one side to the other.

Interesting stuff.


And here’s a game which tests how good you are at matching colors.

Your are browsing
the Archives of Never Yet Melted in the 'Color' Category.

Entries (RSS)
Comments (RSS)
Feed Shark