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Neurologists can explain how many optical illusions work, but illusory motion is a bit tougher to nail down. The leading theory states that the eye’s short, rapid movements called “saccades” can influence how your brain perceives what is important and what is not. Due to how the geometric shapes are arranged, the eye moves even slightly (some of the motions are microscopic) to take the entire image in, and the focus is constantly shifting. As the gaze shifts, different neurons are activated, and the image appears to be moving. Neurologists hope to use the information gathered from these studies about how the brain processes these illusions in order to help develop a neural prosthetic for those who have suffered brain damage and need assistance with motion perception. Image credit: Beau Deeley http://bit.ly/OqptRt

A Reading Teacher Who Lost The Ability To Read

Here's a medical mystery that begins with a kindergarten teacher. We're not using her full name to protect her medical privacy, so we'll call her M.<p>M. taught reading to 4 and 5-year-olds at a school outside Chicago, but two years ago something happened to her that changed her life: she lost the …

10 rare and beautiful albino animals

TreeHugger writer Sara Novak came face-to-face with an albino alligator at the South Carolina Aquarium in 2010. In her piece about the pigment-less …

Living Microalgae Lamp Absorbs CO2 from the Air

French biochemist Pierre Calleja has designed a fascinating eco-friendly lamp that could light up streets and parking garages while cutting CO2 …

Diapers of the Future May Be Made From Carbon Dioxide

<i>Image courtesy of Shutterstock</i><p>Due to recent scientific discoveries, it looks like changing a diaper may actually become a cleaner endeavor — at least …

Starwatch: The February night sky

Orion and his glittering entourage of bright stars and constellations always make our February evenings some of the year's best for starwatchers. Jupiter adds to the spectacle as it climbs from due E at nightfall to pass some 60° high in Britain's S sky at our star map times.<p>Following its …

Restrictions on fishing in marine sanctuaries appear to be working

Two years after the creation of marine sanctuaries in more than 350 square miles of Southern California coastal waters, state wildlife officials and environmental groups say the restrictions on fishing are largely being obeyed.<p>"All of the dire predictions of the collapse of the commercial and …