Impossible roof defies gravity

Two famous undecidable figures, the Penrose tr...

Two famous undecidable figures, the Penrose triangle and devil’s tuning fork. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“Impossible objects, like those drawn by artist M. C. Escher, don’t seem like they could exist in the real world. But Kokichi Sugihara from Meiji University in Kawasaki, Japan, is well known for building 3D versions of these structures.

Now a new video shows his latest construction: a gravity-defying roof that seems to attract and balance balls on its edge. When the house is rotated, its true form is revealed.

According to Sugihara, this type of ambiguous shape is interesting because we perceive the illusion again even after we have seen what the object really looks like. After studying a variety of these objects, he concludes that our brain seems to choose the most rectangular configuration when it tries to make sense of features that can have different interpretations.

The brain trick was presented this week at the European Conference on Visual Perception in Alghero, Italy.

If you would like to build your own impossible objects, check out printable copies of Sugihara’s designs.” (New Scientist)