There are more optical illusions on the internet than stars in the sky, but not only does this seemingly impossible object exist in real life, YouTube’s Shopbuilt channel shows you how to build your own—without having to bend the laws of the universe. Deep down you always knew there was a good reason you took shop…
Look closely at this photograph of Saturn. There, in the planet’s two outermost rings, is something very strange. Right where they pass behind the planet, those rings are bending.
Look at this picture of Saturn. Can you see the biggest ring? Are you sure?
Steeply-angled sunlight creates a muddled mystery of which terrain are mountains or valleys in this early-morning scene. Only snaking fog shrouding the river reveals the secrets of the inverted topography.
This is not an optical illusion, but it takes advantage of exactly the same principles that make optical illusions work: Our eyes and brain don't scan reality like a camera does. Instead, the brain interprets external inputs, building its own reality. No spoilers, just watch.
It looks like the white dots in this optical illusion are all orbiting an imaginary point in space that, at the same time, is orbiting the center of that red circle. They are not. In reality, they are all moving in straight lines going from one side of the red circle to the opposite one.
When I started to watch this video I thought I wasn't looking at a painting but a high definition flat display that tracked your eyes, modifying a 3D model to give you the illusion of real depth. And then the magics finally get revealed. It's so simple and so damn cool.
These stunning 3D sand designs from New Zealand are simple stunning. Scraping optical illusions into the lovely beaches of Mount Maunganui (and others), the creators from 3DSD certainly know how to trick the eyes.
What a tricky mind trip. Though it looks like this fixed gear biker is playing a video game or stuck inside a M.C. Escher drawing or a part of an optical illusion, he's actually riding on a real bike course made with real ramps and doing real jumps. It just looks crazy from our perspective
When wave pass through each other, they interfere, producing neat effects. Artist Gary Drostle harnesses the interference patterns as light passes through rippling water to create fish pond mosaics.
These four squares appear to move at different speeds, stopping and moving, waiting for each other in pairs. In reality, they are always moving at exactly the same constant speed. Seriously. I opened the GIF in Photoshop and used guides to measure it—in every frame, the squares align perfectly.
While participating in a Q&A as part of #LiveFromSpace, astronaut Douglas H. Wheelock shared this photograph of the Egyptian pyramids, as photographed from the ISS in December 2013. I love the sharpness of the shadows: it's so clean that it reads like an optical illusion.
It may seem like this guy has a space-time bending black hole on his skull, which is about to swallow that guy's finger, but of course it's just an awesome optical illusion, created by artist Cory Ferguson, instagrammed by Geometry Chaos. If you have to get a tattoo, you may as well blow people's minds with it.
Look at these grey circles. They look bent, right? Like somebody put a ring in a vice and squeezed it? Actually, it's just an incredible optical illusion courtesy of @SciencePorn. Both circles are perfectly round. Really. No really.
A tree in Potsdam, Germany, looks like it has been cut in two, with the top hovering over the trunk, and it's thanks to a simple but clever artistic technique.
In this illusion, a toy car seemingly appears from no where. How is that possible? Well, the car was always there. Really. It's a simple but masterful trick, the toy car is programmed to travel along a designated route while the red cards are shown off as a distraction. As one card is shown to reveal nothing behind…
As far as tyrannosaurus rex replicas go, this one seems pretty cheery. Sure, it has sharp teeth and claws but they look playfully toothy. One thing scary about it though: the head and eyes seems to follow you wherever you go. Like the paper T-Rex is watching your every move. What's scarier? It's not actually moving.…
One is dark, one is light. One is gray, one is white. These are obviously two different blocks with two different colors right? Wrong. The two blocks are the same color. Seriously, they're the same shade of gray. Just place your finger across the seam (where the blocks meet in the middle) to reveal the illusion. Just…