Humans can see into the future, says a cognitive scientist. The mechanism behind that can also explain why we are tricked by optical illusions.
Researcher Mark Changizi of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in New York, says it’s our visual system that has evolved to compensate for neural delays, generating images of what will occur one-tenth of a second into the future. That foresight keeps our view of the world in the present. It gives you enough heads up to catch a fly ball (instead of getting socked in the face) and maneuver smoothly through a crowd. His research on this topic is detailed in the May/June issue of the journal Cognitive Science.