Optical illusion: Rotating rings change directions when you look away. | Slate Magazine

Below is an animated GIF showing two rings of circles; one with a red dot in the center (left) and one with a yellow dot in the center (right).



Do these things:


Look at the circles around the red dot. Which way do the circles move, clockwise or counterclockwise? (Answer: counterclockwise.)


Now look at the circles around the yellow dot. Are they moving clockwise or counterclockwise? (Answer: also counterclockwise.)


And here’s the part that will destroy you: Look at the circles moving around the red dot. Without moving your eyes (in other words, using your peripheral vision), tell me: Which way are the circles moving around the yellow dot?


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