One of the speakers we had at Blue Fusion gave a wonderful talk on the mind. He went on about interfacing computers directly with the brain and similar ideas, but the most amazing bit was when he side tracked into a study on concentration. The idea is simple:
Watch the movie (requires java) of 6 people throwing two balls around and try to count how many passes are made. It is quite difficult. When you have done that, read on for the rest (do not read the rest until you have counted the number of passes)
Ok, so once you have watched the movie, how many passes did you count?
What about the gorilla? Did you see the gorilla? (if not, go back and look for it)
You may be saying, of course I saw it, or like me “gorilla? what gorilla?”. In an audience of over 100 scholl kids, only a dozen or so saw the gorilla. It was very incredible to watch.
The reason is apparently simple. You concentrate so hard on watching the passes and trying to count them that you ignore the fact that a black gorilla walks across in front of you…