So here’s an idea I came up with. It’s a design thing for a car, involving the famous Benham’s Disk optical illusion. What’s that, you say? You’ve never heard of the famous Benham’s Disk optical illusion? Well, I bet you’ve seen it at some point in your life, just didn’t know that it had a name, or or if you did suspect that it had a name, never found out or never bothered to try to find out what it is.

Let’s play a round of Pin the Title on the Dingus. The famous Benham’s Disk optical illusion, sometimes called (the less famous thus intensely jealous) Benham’s Top; It’s a pattern in which a circle is half black and the other half is white with some bold black areas in a quasi-regular pattern. Sounding familiar?

black & white cookies

Well, yes, it does look something like one of those. But not exactly, and considerably less tasty. In fact, it looks like this in its most common version:

benham's disk

Oh yes, that. I knew you’d recognize it. The way it goes is like this: around and around. And when it rotates, depending on the combination of its speed and direction, the mechanics of your eyes, and the neural workings of your brain, you will perceive some desaturated colors. Nothing vividly earth-shattering, but entertaining nonetheless. I found a very nice interactive version at the ProcreoFlashDesign site. I recommend Pattern 01 with the “Rogo” off.

What does this have to do with automobiles? Well, if your car is playful enough, it would be neat if the hubcaps or wheels were Blenham’s Disks. Well, I think it would be neat, anyway. And it’s my blog. Nyeh redux. So which car is playful enough? Currently, I’d have to say a Mini-Cooper or a SmartCar.

If I were really blog-proficient, I would animate those wheels. Thought about simulating the effect, but since it’s slightly different for each person, I decided it wasn’t worth the effort.

Very happy motoring!