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lurok September 22 2013 09:23 AM

How small creatures perceive world
I saw this story a few days ago, and it was one of those rare science stories which made me go: 'mmm, that's interesting...'.

From the perspective of: that's why I can rarely catch that fly :)

In a nutshell:


Smaller animals tend to perceive time as if it is passing in slow motion, a new study has shown.

This means that they can observe movement on a finer timescale than bigger creatures, allowing them to escape from larger predators.

Insects and small birds, for example, can see more information in one second than a larger animal such as an elephant.

The work is published in the journal Animal Behaviour.

"The ability to perceive time on very small scales may be the difference between life and death for fast-moving organisms such as predators and their prey," said lead author Kevin Healy, at Trinity College Dublin (TCD), Ireland.

Metryq September 22 2013 11:33 AM

Re: How small creatures perceive world
This sounds like something out Frederik Pohl's MAN PLUS. Astronaut Roger Torroway is converted into a cyborg able to live on the surface of Mars, the vanguard of a colony project. The first cyborg died from sensory overload. So Torroway is given a computer to mediate the flood of data from his enhanced sensorium. When something is knocked over in the lab, he catches only those items that would break upon hitting the floor. He literally did not see the other items, and his time sense was speeded up during the catch. Torroway's time sense is later slowed (by varying his perception of the environment) to make the months-long trip to Mars pass in a subjective instant.

Timelord Victorious September 22 2013 12:40 PM

Re: How small creatures perceive world
Yes, flies are in bullet time all the time. must be very boring for them when not much is happening...

publiusr September 22 2013 08:42 PM

Re: How small creatures perceive world
Humans nothing more than moving pieces of landscape to them.

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