RE: memetics-digest V1 #1011

From: Wade T.Smith (
Date: Tue Apr 09 2002 - 13:50:06 BST

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    Subject: RE: memetics-digest V1 #1011
    Date: Tue, 9 Apr 2002 08:50:06 -0400
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    On 04/09/02 06:54, Vincent Campbell said this-

    >generally intepretations of our perceptions are biased.

    Yup. _All_ interpretations are biased. The self is a bias.

    >how major league batters appear to have
    >more time to spot the spin and direction of the ball than normal people

    This is an excellent example of trained perception, and yes, it is
    perception, learned and improved through practice. It's not that the
    experienced batter 'sees' the ball any better, granting equal acuity of
    vision, but that he can read the early indications of speed and motion
    from the pitcher. The ball is, after all, coming almost directly at him,
    and foreshortening perspective gives him a pretty good look at it. The
    alert batter will be in a late stage of preparation to hit the ball well
    before the ball leaves the pitcher's hand. This would be true in cricket,
    as well, I'm sure, although, because the cricket ball will bounce off the
    ground, there is less certainty about its trajectory.

    One study of Ted Williams (purportedly the finest batter to trod the
    diamond) indicated that he could maintain perceptual observation of the
    pitch well past the first quarter of its progress. But, practice makes
    perfect, and he was a perfectionist.

    And it's not just batters. A good outfielder will be able to put himself
    under the hit ball after only a microsecond of seeing its path from the

    Physics and the natural world are giving us clues like this all the time.

    - Wade

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