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Old Oct 19, 2006, 7:59 PM   #1
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While replying in another forum re: white balance and tungsten lighting it got me thinking........

We have all heard how film/sensors don't see various color temps as our eyes do and thus must be modified accordingly in order to produce acceptable images (either in-camera or RAW conversions).

Now my crazy question...... When tungston,flourescent,mercury vapor, hologen etc. lighting was invented how did our eyes/brain know to adjust for pure white?

Remember, these inventions were all created no more than 100 years or so ago and eyesite has been around a lot longer than that!

Prior to the first light bulb we had sun, moon, firelight and shade with occasional lightning flashes. While it is obvious color temperatures have been around since the beginning, artificially created light intensities have not.


Guess the creator was a pretty smart guy, Huh?

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Old Oct 19, 2006, 9:25 PM   #2
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PentaxDan wrote:
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Now my crazy question...... When tungston,flourescent,mercury vapor, hologen etc. lighting was invented how did our eyes/brain know to adjust for pure white?

Remember these inventions were all created no more than 100 years or so ago and eyesite has been around a lot longer than that!

Prior to the first light bulb we had sun, moon, firelight and shade with occasional lightning flashes. While it is obvious color temperatures have been around since the beginning, artificially created light intensities have not. ...
Edwin Land (of Polaroid) spent a great deal of time trying to figure out how to explain/deal-with that issue. Don't think he got very far with it though.

I think there is a strong enough evolutionary advantage to being able to consistently identify color (ripeness, blush, ...) in full daylight, shade, cloudy, twilight, ... that the ability carries over to new kinds of lighting.

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Guess the creator was a pretty smart guy, Huh?
I don't think it is a good idea to start a religious argument here, but I would suggest that you look at the design ofyour eye before you say that.
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Old Oct 19, 2006, 11:25 PM   #3
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Not a crazy question but consider this...the eye is like a camera lens. If you remove a lens from a camera and look through it at arms' length you view thingsas youreye does...collecting light, focusing it and then projecting it on the cornea...UPSIDE DOWN. Yes, the image on the cornea of your eye (where the optic nerve picks it up) is actually upside sown. So why aren't falling all over the place seeing everything inverted? It's because the best post-processor in the world is the human brain. It "flips" the image for our convenience. From there, determining what's white under a fluorescent light tube seems simple.
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Old Oct 20, 2006, 5:10 AM   #4
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No religious connatation intended, but you gotta admit it kind of answers the eye designsuggestion doesn't it?

Also, whoever wrote the PP code for the brain did a pretty da*n good job along with the eye design!


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Old Oct 20, 2006, 5:19 AM   #5
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PentaxDan wrote:
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No religious connatation intended, but you gotta admit it kind of answers the eye designsuggestion doesn't it?
If that is the answer it just raises more questions, like why didn't we get optical zoom?
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Old Oct 20, 2006, 6:06 AM   #6
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Cause we have legs.....don't need it!

Oh Boy, what havewe started?
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Old Oct 20, 2006, 6:19 AM   #7
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PentaxDan wrote:
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Also, whoever wrote the PP code for the brain did a pretty da*n good job along with the eye design!

Nobody "wrote" the PP code for the brain. Synaptic pathways evolved over millions of years and trillions of individual organisms. As a result of random variation in "circuit diagrams", those organisms that were better suited to survive in their environment had a selective advantage and left more offspring than those less suited for survival. And besides, if anyone (or anything) did write the PP code, who wrote the PP code for it?
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Old Oct 20, 2006, 7:29 AM   #8
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Oh, Oh Looks like an OSU vs. Michigan thing now!
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Old Oct 20, 2006, 10:24 AM   #9
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PentaxDan wrote:
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... did a pretty da*n good job along with the eye design!
Good design in the eye? With a blind spot? With good acutiy only at the centerand very rapid fall off from there? With degeneration as it ages?

If anyone designed a camera with those flaws, they would be out of bussiness in less than a month.
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Old Oct 20, 2006, 8:47 PM   #10
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BillDrew wrote:
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Good design in the eye? With a blind spot? With good acutiy only at the centerand very rapid fall off from there? With degeneration as it ages?

If anyone designed a camera with those flaws, they would be out of bussiness in less than a month.
Also consider the gene(s) for colorblindness, and the percentage of population that is nearsighted. Cataracts, anyone?

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