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Sleights of Mind

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Sleights of Mind: Surprising Insights from the New Science of Neuro-magic by  Sandra Blakeslee, Stephen L. Macknik,  Susana Martinez-Conde, book reviewAbout a year ago, the BBC screened an episode of Horizon called “Is Seeing Believing?”, which explored optical illusions and how they work in our minds (http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00vhw1d). These illusions revealed many loopholes, short-cuts and inconsistencies in the way we perceive the world, which the designers of the tricks had mercilessly exploited in order to create something that simply shouldn’t be possible. This not only showed that these tricks could be interesting way to explore our psychology, but also that the people who designed the tricks seemed to know more about the way our minds worked than the psychologists who studied them. The programme fascinated me, and so I couldn’t wait to get stuck into Stephen Macknik and Susana Martinez-Conde’s new book “Sleights of Mind: What the Neuroscience of Magic Reveals about our Brains”, which is built around a similar principle.

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