Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Mondrian's computer-like brain

Piet Mondrian's work:

Mondrian original is simply picture perfect
By Steve Connor

"There is more to a Mondrian than meets the eye. A scientific study of one of the world's greatest abstract painters shows that he had an unnerving ability to make people feel that his paintings were perfect. Chris McManus, a psychologist from University College London, told the British Association Festival of Science at Leicester that most people could tell whether a Mondrian was genuine or a fake when given the choice between the real thing and something very similar. Furthermore, if anyone was tempted to believe that they could paint "that old rubbish" then think again. A Mondrian seemed to tap into a subconscious pleasure centre in the brain that made most people believe that the artwork just cannot be improved. Dr McManus ran a series of studies in which people were asked to choose between a computer-generated image of a real Mondrian and a similar image based on the same painting but with the patterns digitally distorted. "We took a Mondrian painting, put it into a computer and then just moved all the black and white lines slightly up and down so that they were all in slightly different proportions. The simple question is, should people care for them; can they tell the difference?" Dr McManus said. The results revealed that most people with no knowledge of art easily spotted the fake. "People can distinguish a real Mondrian from an adjusted, pseudo-Mondrian given the chance," he said."

Below, a computer chip-

Integrated circuit of Atmel Diopsis 740 System on Chip showing memory blocks, logic and input/output pads around the periphery, source
 You might be interested to know that Piet Mondrian lived from 1872 to 1944. He arrived at the above style in 1921. The earliest development of the computer chip was 1949, four years after Mondrian's death, and its earliest discussions were not presented publicly until 1952. The first successful demonstration the first working integrated example of a chip occurred on on September 12, 1958. Mondrian was before his time. Pretty cool, eh?!

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