Get Alien Vision And See New Colors!

One aspect of science fiction that I particularly treasure is the ability to imagine what it would be like to be an intelligent non-human alien. SF writers are free to imagine different capabilities; for example, what would it be like to see more colors?

Consider this conversation between an alien (male) from Vega and a human woman:

"...Let me take that flower from your hair. There. What do you see?"

"A pretty white flower. That's why I picked it and put it in my hair."

"But it is not a pretty white flower. Not to me, anyhow. Your eyes perceive light with wavelengths between about 4000 and 7200 angstrom units. The eyes of a Vegan look deeper into the ultraviolet, for one thing, down to around 3000. We are blind to what you refer to as "red", but on this 'white' flower I see two colors for which there are no words in your language. My body is covered with patterns you cannot see, but they are close enough to those of others in my family so that another Vegan, familiar with the Shtigogens could tell my family and provenance on our first meeting....
(From Roger Zelazny's 1966 novel This Immortal)

Take a look at this fascinating TED talk that describes the journey of artist Neil Harbisson, who was born entirely color blind. Thanks to a remarkable piece of bespoke technology, he learned to perceive colors. And much more.


(Neil Harbisson, an artist who hears colors)

"Eventually, I was able to differentiate 360 different colors, just like human vision. I was able to differentiate all of the degrees of the color wheel.

"But then, I thought that this human vision just wasn't good enough. There are many more colors around us that we cannot perceive, but which electronic eyes can perceive.

"So I decided to continue extending my color sense, and I added infrared and ultraviolet to the color-to-sound scale. So now I can hear colors that the human eye cannot perceive. For example, perceiving infrared is good because you can hear ... movement detectors in a room ... I can hear if someone points at me with a remote control. The good thing about perceiving ultraviolet is that you can hear if it is a good day or a bad day to sunbathe...

"I think we should all have this wish to perceive things that we cannot perceive..."

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 3/22/2014)

Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.

| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |

Would you like to contribute a story tip? It's easy:
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add it here.

Comment/Join discussion ( 0 )

Related News Stories - (" Culture ")

3RDiTEK Lifeblogging Headband Camera
'It's logging anyway - everything you see on duty goes into the black box.' - Charles Stross, 2007.

Robot Lawyers And Robot Judges Now Everywhere
'The law clerk arrived, a smallish robot with a battered stainless steel hide and dull coppery features.' - Frederik Pohl, 1954.

Roam-e Flying Selfie Drone Cam
'Tight mid-shot and pull out on but behind me...' -Karen Traviss, 2004.

DoNotPay Lawyer Program Contests Parking Tickets
'I want my lawyer program.' - David Brin, 1990.

 

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

 

Current News

Mobility Scooters Go Offroad
'Noiselessly, on rubber-tired wheels, they journeyed down the long aisles...'

RAMST - Robotically Assembled Modular Space Telescope
'The eight thin metallic legs were pointed downwards, balanced delicately...'

Terminal Snooping At Bloomberg
'The evidence began with a slowed response at her computer terminal.'

Will There Be A Digital Afterlife?
'A quick exchange of energies resulting from the relocation of discorporate states.'

ROCKY - Resistive Overload Combined With Kinetic Yo-Yo
'Joe got out the gravity-simulator harnesses..'

China Bans Self-Driving Car Testing
Innovation hits some bumps.

Robotic Lawnmower Fulfills SciFi Homeowner's Dreams
'The mower reached the edge of the lawn, clucked to itself like a contented hen...'

7-Eleven Drone Delivers Chix Sandwich And Slurpee
'It was a smooth ovoid floating a few inches from the floor...'

Beta-Ti3Au Titanium-Gold Alloy Hardest Tissue-Compatible Metal
It needs a more science-fictional name!

Solar Plane Circles The Globe
'Tropism-like pursuit of the sun across the sky as they recharged their batteries...'

Audiobooks - Fastest Growing Format In Publishing
'The public preferred lectons...'

SuperMeat - Crowdfunding Pohl/Kornbluth's Chicken Little
'Chicken Little, who would be sliced and packed to feed people from Baffinland to Little America.'

Martian-Grown Food Might Be Fine
'I donít want to come off as arrogant here, but Iím the best botanist on the planet.'

MARLO Robot Attempts Wave Field
'It is apparent that he will walk before his human brother.'

3RDiTEK Lifeblogging Headband Camera
'It's logging anyway - everything you see on duty goes into the black box.'

3D-Printed Biohybrid Is A Tissue-Engineered Robot
'The directing neurological tissue that forms the basis of the swibble is alive...'

More SF in the News Stories

More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.