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Upside down-iness observations


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  • MVP 2023

Hi all, an observation on one tiny aspect of our world.

Just for some fun I plonked an upside down smiley into the "ongoing list".

It got me thinking about the odd experiences I have had on occasional visits to the northern hemisphere.

I'm the sort of person who went through Scouts blah blah, and have always been an outdoors type.  Lots of awareness of where I am and getting out into Nature.

My first "truly" ( = a fair way from the equator) northern hemisphere trip was to the UK about 15 years ago.  My wife and I happily set off for a day's walking all over central London.  Consulted maps, figured out where we were going blah blah.  Popped out of the tube stations and headed off.  Half hour later and totally lost.  Huh? 

Hmmmm.  Find the street names on the map and ...... we're there ??!     What the *%$$!    This went on for about 2 hours until I finally twigged that my body was so ingrained to using the sun as a bearing source, that all my internal references were effectively 180° out of whack.  

After realising what I was doing, it then took a huge amount of effort to keep reminding my System Bits about the differences, but on each reminder and checking carefully, off we went...successfully reaching the destinations over the coming days.

 At the time I was quite amazed at how much my body was telling me "No No No......you are not heading North etc".  It was very surprising how much my "subconscious perceptions" obviously kept track of the sun during the day.  At night I'd get into other means like stars etc, but this is an obvious change between hemispheres.  At first glance the Sun is still up there and not that different at all, but it's something worth remembering if you've never done such a change. 

Instinct?  Sort of...but probably more learnt.   Us humans think we are so smart, but we really know so little.  To continue the Philosophy session, tell me how all the birds over Australia know when the inland lakes flood, and head off on the long flights to get there within days of the water arriving, all over our "dry" lake systems that are huge. (goggles Lake Eyre).   Or are our horses chatting using brain waves when they hang their heads together for ages?  "Cheesch George, your breath stinks of hay today".  "I know.  Did you see Sue dump her rider on that jump at the show?  What a laugh!"

cheers, Ausfucious   🤔

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  • MVP 2023

Interesting remarks Aus ...

I noticed two features:
1- sometimes when you get to a new place you feel that you used to be here .. It's strange but in two or three days you don't confuse rooms, streets or buses.
2- I remember the road only when I ride it myself. But when I'm sitting next to the driver - it's very difficult to get back to the right place.

And now about the sun ...
I once found a good example for students that illustrates the correct selection of the signal polling frequency for an ADC.

If one man is shown the sun every hour, he will be convinced that it is moving from east to west.

If another person is shown the sun every 23 hours, he will know for sure that the sun is moving from west to east.

This is probably the difference not only in computers ADC but also in ordinary people.
If you spent long hours in the sun - then you are different from those who come out of a closed room only for a moment ...

But I am convinced that everyone has a compass and it works ... The only problem is that the magnetic pole migrates - so we can sometimes get lost.


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  • 1 month later...

A bit--ok, a lot of bits--after the fact, but yes. 

It is amazing how our bodies are attuned to the actual cycles of light, dark, seasons, etc.
As far as directions, so much of our consciousness is filtered, works on autopilot, that it is unsettling to suddenly need to pay attention to things that our brains automatically skip over.  It is learnt, certainly, or to be more accurate, it is an adaptive mechanism--like that experiment with inverting lenses.


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  • MVP 2023

Here's another thing for humans to try.  If you can set this up it's very intriguing. 

Get a good set of headphones (not buds) and feed them the signal from a mic.  Put a variable delay on the signal being sent from the mic to the phones, something like 0.5 to 1.5 seconds.

Plonk yourself in front of the mic and turn the system on.

Now......try to talk properly.  Vary the delay, just for play value. 

This might lead to having some sympathy for those people you sometimes see on TV "crosses", who sound like idiots.  😧

cheers, Aus

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Or even the perception of what your own voice sounds like...

I remember as a young man, just getting into music, recording myself on a tape recorder (yes, reel to reel  😏),
and being so surprised what I sounded like (that's me?)....

I did go on and play in a couple of bands in my youth, and one "soundman" we had really loved to over-use the delay.
Yep, really hard to sing when your own voice is slapping back at you two words later...


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