Are these recognized visual phenomena?

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King Author
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Are these recognized visual phenomena?

Postby King Author » Fri Jul 15, 2011 11:26 am UTC

Whenever I look askew of a hard light source, be it the sun or a lamp, if I just stare and let my vision sort of "lock" and lose focus, I see these little transparent circles flutter across my vision. This is just the brownian motion of like, microscopic bacteria or something floating across the fluid of my eye, correct? In any case, is there a name for this phenomenon?

Secondly, and more weirdly; whenever I stare at the clear blue sky - doesn't have to be perfect, but it has to be blue - I see...sort of...purple waves, ripples, appear in my vision of the blue sky specifically, and at quite a rapid pace, meld inward and converge wherever I'm looking. For anyone who's played it, it's vaguely reminiscent of the "time gate" effect in Chrono Trigger, only purple instead of blue.

It only happens when I look at the blue sky specifically; nothing else works. And it doesn't matter where the sun is; nearly setting, not yet risen, high in the sky, off to one side. Is there a name for this phenomenon, or are my eyes just screwy? ("Screwey?")
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AvatarIII
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Re: Are these recognized visual phenomena?

Postby AvatarIII » Fri Jul 15, 2011 11:49 am UTC

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Floater

no idea about the other thing though

edit: this possibly might explain it?
http://littleshop.physics.colostate.edu ... Purple.pdf

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JBJ
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Re: Are these recognized visual phenomena?

Postby JBJ » Fri Jul 15, 2011 12:10 pm UTC

The second is most likely the blue field effect (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blue_field ... phenomenon)
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King Author
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Re: Are these recognized visual phenomena?

Postby King Author » Sat Jul 16, 2011 12:54 pm UTC

I think what I described as dots aren't floaters, but the blue field effect. Because that Wikipedia floaters page shows things that don't look like what I'm seeing; the first phenomenon I described isn't amorphous blobs, but perfect tiny circles (well, more hexagonal) and they dart around really fast.

And the second thing I described isn't dots (which is what the WP article on the blue field effect says); it's waves, ripples, like in that image I linked to. It looks almost exactly like that, only purple and transparent and not perfectly round.

"Scheerer's phenomenon is distinguished by the appearance of multiple, identical-looking bright dots that move around rapidly in random directions." Yeah, the first thing I described is definitely the blue field thing. I guess I've never seen floaters. Though oddly, "blue field dots" appear when I look askew of any bright light, not just blue fields. It's certainly most noticable when looking at a blue sky, though.

Oh! Oh yeah, the first thing is definitely Sheerer's. This is what I was talking about. Of course, they don't loop like that, but you get the idea.

At any rate, I'm still curious about the purple waves.
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Re: Are these recognized visual phenomena?

Postby Xanthir » Sat Jul 16, 2011 8:02 pm UTC

I occasionally experience something very similar to your "purple wave" phenomena - sometimes when looking at a bright blue sky when I was previously in a darkened area, I'll get a "pulsating" effect with light and dark rings. I have no idea what it is caused by, though.
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Re: Are these recognized visual phenomena?

Postby cphite » Thu Jul 21, 2011 9:46 pm UTC

King Author wrote:I think what I described as dots aren't floaters, but the blue field effect. Because that Wikipedia floaters page shows things that don't look like what I'm seeing; the first phenomenon I described isn't amorphous blobs, but perfect tiny circles (well, more hexagonal) and they dart around really fast.


Could be floaters or Sheerer's Phenomenon.

And the second thing I described isn't dots (which is what the WP article on the blue field effect says); it's waves, ripples, like in that image I linked to. It looks almost exactly like that, only purple and transparent and not perfectly round.


That sounds like floaters. They can appear to be dots, wavy lines, or waves and ripples; I see basically what you're describing if I look at the sky, or any other bright uniformly colored surface. They're normal, but if you notice a sudden and dramatic increase in them, definitely go see an eye specialist. Also, if you notice any that are actually obstructive to your vision, or - especially if you notice bright flashes accompanying them - go see an eye specialist.

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Re: Are these recognized visual phenomena?

Postby Technical Ben » Sat Jul 23, 2011 10:36 pm UTC

Do spots before your eyes not also indicate blood pressure problems? I know it happens on occasion when people "get up too fast". That's probably not related to the other cases I hear of, when people have migraines. [edit] Oh, I forgot to mention, as post below, if it is indicative of a blood pressure problem go see an eye doctor!

[edit]
I get both of these too. :(
I've had floaters for as long as I can remember, and they seem to have kept their shape and position all my life. I notice them less now. I guess I'm one of those people who notice everything, even the things others tend not to.
Last edited by Technical Ben on Sun Jul 24, 2011 8:28 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Are these recognized visual phenomena?

Postby Gary_Hurd » Sun Jul 24, 2011 4:53 am UTC

King Author wrote:Whenever I look askew of a hard light source, be it the sun or a lamp, if I just stare and let my vision sort of "lock" and lose focus, I see these little transparent circles flutter across my vision. This is just the brownian motion of like, microscopic bacteria or something floating across the fluid of my eye, correct? In any case, is there a name for this phenomenon?

Secondly, and more weirdly; whenever I stare at the clear blue sky - doesn't have to be perfect, but it has to be blue - I see...sort of...purple waves, ripples, appear in my vision of the blue sky specifically, and at quite a rapid pace, meld inward and converge wherever I'm looking. For anyone who's played it, it's vaguely reminiscent of the "time gate" effect in Chrono Trigger, only purple instead of blue.

It only happens when I look at the blue sky specifically; nothing else works. And it doesn't matter where the sun is; nearly setting, not yet risen, high in the sky, off to one side. Is there a name for this phenomenon, or are my eyes just screwy? ("Screwey?")


Go see an optometrist, or ophthalmologist.

What you have described are most likely "floaters" or "phosphenes." But 1) you should not be staring at the sun, or any intense light source, 2) depending on your age and medical history, floaters and phosphenes could be symptoms of a medical problem, and 3) an internet BB dedicated to a comic strip is not the place to take medical advice.

For those who offered medical diagnosis- STOP IT!

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Re: Are these recognized visual phenomena?

Postby cphite » Tue Aug 02, 2011 5:23 pm UTC

Gary_Hurd wrote:
King Author wrote:Whenever I look askew of a hard light source, be it the sun or a lamp, if I just stare and let my vision sort of "lock" and lose focus, I see these little transparent circles flutter across my vision. This is just the brownian motion of like, microscopic bacteria or something floating across the fluid of my eye, correct? In any case, is there a name for this phenomenon?

Secondly, and more weirdly; whenever I stare at the clear blue sky - doesn't have to be perfect, but it has to be blue - I see...sort of...purple waves, ripples, appear in my vision of the blue sky specifically, and at quite a rapid pace, meld inward and converge wherever I'm looking. For anyone who's played it, it's vaguely reminiscent of the "time gate" effect in Chrono Trigger, only purple instead of blue.

It only happens when I look at the blue sky specifically; nothing else works. And it doesn't matter where the sun is; nearly setting, not yet risen, high in the sky, off to one side. Is there a name for this phenomenon, or are my eyes just screwy? ("Screwey?")


Go see an optometrist, or ophthalmologist.

What you have described are most likely "floaters" or "phosphenes." But 1) you should not be staring at the sun, or any intense light source, 2) depending on your age and medical history, floaters and phosphenes could be symptoms of a medical problem, and 3) an internet BB dedicated to a comic strip is not the place to take medical advice.

For those who offered medical diagnosis- STOP IT!


who offered a medical diagnosis? We pointed him towards readily available information that matched what he was describing. You don't need a degree or a white lab coat to do that.

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Re: Are these recognized visual phenomena?

Postby GreenTom » Wed Aug 03, 2011 12:19 am UTC

I see something similar to your second phenomenon when I close my eyes and apply some pressure. I think they're either phosphenes (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phosphene) or the third type of closed-eye hallucination (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phosphene /a) listed. I see radially symmetric, fast moving grid-like patterns in red and purple.

Is it possible your eyes are doing something like that, and they become visible against a clear blue sky for whatever reason? Have you ever seen something similar in a dark room or with your eyes closed?

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Re: Are these recognized visual phenomena?

Postby Hkvanhart » Wed Feb 20, 2019 5:38 am UTC

Yes! I have the exact same thing and have had it as long as I can remember. I’m 28 and have experienced it since I was a kid. I have been to ophthalmologists and they say everything looks great. I only notice it when I look up at a bright sky. It’s purplish and it moves almost in waves inwards. Hard to describe. I decided today to search it and found your post. I know you posted it like 8 years ago and chances of you seeing this are slim but... you are not alone!

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Re: Are these recognized visual phenomena?

Postby p1t1o » Wed Feb 20, 2019 4:35 pm UTC

I wonder if this is it with the blue sky.

Your best colour perception is in the centre of your vision, very little in the periphery.
Your eye constantly (even when you think you are keeping your vision fixed on a point) moving in little jerky movements that helps your brain build up a complete picture (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saccade)
Looking at a field of solid colour, your eye will be zipping about. Your brain can only really tell what colour the centre of your vision is and the saccades help to "fill in" the rest.
Possibly with a strong, bright blue, you can notice lag in the peripheral vision which could be percieved as "waves" of slightly different colour.
Potentially something about a bright blue sky that makes the effect obvious enough to be noticable?

This is all guesswork but built on facts.

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Re: Are these recognized visual phenomena?

Postby Ivan from Union » Sat Mar 02, 2019 7:45 pm UTC

Hi, Mr. Author:

Googling one or another thing I ended up here. I don't know if I am still allowed to comment on a thread this old but I registered especifically for your post!

I am thoroughly familiar with "little circles", I just don't know if we are talking about the same subject.

A few months ago I started to do eye exercises for myopia (it is all over youtube). Less than 5 days later the circles appeared. I see 5-point stars, especially when I look at the color red in the backs of cars or the actual red stop light. Five point stars at every light source! It may or may have to do with one eye being centered lower than the other, that is, one is off-centered. That is my case.

I also noticed that if I close one eye, the 5 perfectly round dots are no longer ordered correctly. However, the pattern of disorder is completely different in the other eye! Yet, they "sum up" into 5-point stars.

What I was forced to conclude was that I was looking at a celular map of the center of my left and right eyes, even if the map I am seeing has no connection with actual cell distribution at the center of my eyes. That is, the partial sum of my color perception in each eye somehow "translates" into 5 different dots, but I know the fenomenon is real for each eye because the disorder maps for left and right eye are different!

The left eye perception of color does not necessarily use the same cells as the right eye, meaning the cell distribution is not necessarily symmetrical for both eyes. But in both eyes all color perception sums up nicely and neatly into... 5 dots for each eye.

If you ask me how 5 perfectly round circles add into a perfectly round circle of a distant light source I would never know what to say, and we would all agree that vision is poorly understood in its connection with the brain.

Also, note that the color perception cells merge color at the center of my eye. Very strange thing indeed!

(I went from 3.25 to 1.75 or 2.0 in less than 2 weeks, the exercises actually helped a lot and I do recommend them)

@GreenTom:

I used to call that "insect vision" and described it more than 10 years ago publicly, alas in another language! I will return to your post if there is any interest.

Regards to both.


Ivan


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