Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Color Images More Memorable Than Black and White

07.05.2002


Psychologists have found that colors enhance an individual’s visual memory. From a series of experiments, researchers learned that subjects were more likely to recall the color version of an image than the same scene in black and white. The results, which appear in the May issue of the journal Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory and Cognition, also indicate that natural colors make a difference. A photo of a landscape with a green sky, for example, will not lodge as effectively in the brain as the same scene with a blue sky.



Felix Wichmann of the Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics and his colleagues conducted five experiments, using subjects with normal vision. Participants initially viewed 48 images, half in color and half in black and white. The picture subjects fell into four different categories: landscapes, flowers, rock formations and man-made objects. Each category provided a different check on the results. For example, the flower pictures varied in terms of color, not shape, but those of rock formations offered the opposite. After presenting these images, the team mixed in 48 new scenes, showed the entire set of 96, and then recorded whether the subjects remembered the originals. The color images, they found, made much longer-lasting impressions than did the black-and-white ones.

To assess whether the visual memory system treats natural color and false color differently, the researchers presented subjects with altered images, such as scenes with reddish grass. They found that people did not remember these scenes any better than they did the black-and-white versions. According to study co-author Karl Gegenfurtner, this indicates that the visual memory system is tuned to the color schemes of the natural world. "If stimuli are too strange," Gegenfurtner says, "the system simply doesn’t engage them as well." Advertising or design industries might do well to take note of the findings. To catch someone’s eye, bright colors might be best, but if "the aim is more to have an image ’stick’ in the viewer’s memory," Wichmann suggests, "unnatural colors may not be suitable.

Greg Mone | Scientific American

More articles from Interdisciplinary Research:

nachricht New dental implant with built-in reservoir reduces risk of infections
18.01.2017 | KU Leuven

nachricht Many muons: Imaging the underground with help from the cosmos
19.12.2016 | DOE/Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

All articles from Interdisciplinary Research >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Traffic jam in empty space

New success for Konstanz physicists in studying the quantum vacuum

An important step towards a completely new experimental access to quantum physics has been made at University of Konstanz. The team of scientists headed by...

Im Focus: How gut bacteria can make us ill

HZI researchers decipher infection mechanisms of Yersinia and immune responses of the host

Yersiniae cause severe intestinal infections. Studies using Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model organism aim to elucidate the infection mechanisms of these...

Im Focus: Interfacial Superconductivity: Magnetic and superconducting order revealed simultaneously

Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.

While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...

Im Focus: Studying fundamental particles in materials

Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales

Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...

Im Focus: Designing Architecture with Solar Building Envelopes

Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.

As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Sustainable Water use in Agriculture in Eastern Europe and Central Asia

19.01.2017 | Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Helmholtz International Fellow Award for Sarah Amalia Teichmann

20.01.2017 | Awards Funding

An innovative high-performance material: biofibers made from green lacewing silk

20.01.2017 | Materials Sciences

Ion treatments for cardiac arrhythmia — Non-invasive alternative to catheter-based surgery

20.01.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>