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  #1  
Old 08-17-06, 01:34 PM
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Seeing Life in Colors: Crosswired Senses - Synesthesia

I saw this story on Primetime last night and remember reading a past thread on something very similar. I searched, but couldn't find it.

Seeing Life in Colors

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Aug. 15, 2006 — Imagine a world where the sound of music would make you see colors. Where the note B is sparkling silver and D flat is a wondrous, pure periwinkle. Where the taste of food has a distinctive shape and where the sound of words can leave a bad taste. Even the calendar — days, months and years — can generate specific 3-D images.

That's the world of Laura Rosser, 24, and others who have synesthesia, in which one sense — taste, sight, hearing, touch or smell — gets jumbled with another, creating what Dr. Richard Cytowic, a neurologist, describes as a blending of the senses.
Anyone experience this or something similar?
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Old 08-17-06, 02:07 PM
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Sorry but no can't say that I have. Music is either in key, properly tuned and timed or painful.

Food is either yucky or yummy.

Clothes are either comfortable or trash!

I think if I remember Barbyma's post correctly synesthesia is rather rare!
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Old 08-18-06, 11:19 AM
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I've described some food items, as tasting 'green' or 'red', before...but I'm just associating the flavor, with a 'similar' adjective, in my mind.

I'm not 'serious' about that, either...I say it in fun.
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Old 08-18-06, 11:32 AM
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It is rare, but I remember reading an article about it a while back, myself. One of the things they did was interview two women who both had it, but each was quite different - I think one perceived tastes of sounds and the other perceived, um. Don't remember. However, they both perceived words as colors, and the article showed the list of the same words, one in the colors they were to the one woman, and one in the colors for the other woman.

I think of it as one more example of why diagnoses of different conditions of the brain are helpful, but not as a one-size-fits-all!
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Old 08-20-06, 10:28 PM
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Musician can 'taste' music- article

http://www.newscientist.com/article.ns?id=dn7091

Senses-crossover makes for tasty music

Duncan Graham-Rowe

Life, according to the British band The Verve, is a bittersweet symphony.

But for one musician in Switzerland who can "taste" sounds the symphony is also disgusting, and tastes of mown grass and low-fat cream.


The musician, known as ES, is a synaesthete, a person who involuntarily experiences a crossing over of the senses for certain types of stimuli.

But not only does ES see certain colours when she hears specific notes - which is quite common among synaesthetes - but she also associates specific tastes with different pairs of notes, or intervals.


The fact that a minor second tastes sour to her and an interval of a fifth tastes of pure water gives ES a definite advantage in her profession, say Lutz Jäncke and colleagues at the University of Zurich, Switzerland.


In tests where different tastes such as salty, sweet, cream and even low fat cream, were placed on the musician's tongue she was able to identify the correct interval faster than five musician non-synaesthetes.


Intense relationship

It is difficult to tell whether synaesthesia was the driving force for ES becoming a musician because she started when she was just five. Either way, she believes that because of it she has a more intense relationship with music.


But while this helps her in the complex cognitive task of accurately identifying tone-intervals, which is useful for transcribing music, there is a drawback - it affects her taste in music.

Both her visual and gustatory synaestetic experiences are more vivid when the notes and intervals are more pronounced.


Most modern forms of music have so few clear and distinct tones and intervals that the colours and tastes they evoke are somewhat muted.

So ES tends to prefer simple harmonies such as renaissance music. Bach, for example is particularly creamy, she says.
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Old 08-21-06, 12:13 PM
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I don't think I would want to taste sounds it looks way tooo confusing! I think I will stick to my present confusions like the difference between my right and left hand!
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Old 08-21-06, 12:23 PM
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I have an email pal (from another discussion group) who recently learned that she isn't totally wierd and there is a name for this condition and that she isn't the only person who has it. I think I'm confused enough most of the time without adding this layer to my super-sensitivities and AD/HD and other stuff.
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Old 03-05-07, 04:54 PM
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I have synesthesia. I see everything i hear or touch. i see different shapes and shades of colors for each sound.
I am a professional musician so i use this to my advantage. when i play i am also painting! i use it to see what other instruments are doing and i can make my part fit in visually and therefore sonically since to me good music sounds good AND looks good too. i play bass a lot so i "look" at what the bass drum (and other instruments) is doing and play my part so they line up visually.

i always have a visual of what is touching my skin and also of sensations on my insides. i could draw a picture of the feeling of my arm on the corner of a tabletop for example.
i think maybe the audio is linked with the tactile in the sense that hearing is just air touching your ear drums which is a tactile experience.

it's not confusing to me because i have always had it so it's part of my experience of the world. it may make me more sensitive to pain since i get obnoxious visuals with the pain and loud sounds also can be like having a flashlight pointed in your eyes.

there are times when i have seen music in such beautiful 3-D coming out of the speakers and i just sit there in awe.
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Old 03-05-07, 05:06 PM
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if all that we know are shapes of one of only three or so geometries at different levels of abstraction - wouldn't our own mind - (of one of those geometries also) - mightn't the minds perception of everything relate to resonance with those other shapes - whereby the strongest perceptions of 'pleasure' occurring when pattern of resonance are strongest.

Or paraphrased that we're a resting skipping rope - and that light, colours - natural stuff which has formed by pure process of natural evolution - are kinda' the hands which turn our world - skipping rope waveforms of pleasure sweeping our tears away.
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Old 03-05-07, 05:29 PM
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http://www.lcmedia.com/mind462.htm

This a link to "The Infinite Mind," a psychiatric news radio show from public radio. The link if for their show on synethisia from early last month. Free to listen to.
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Old 03-05-07, 05:59 PM
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I can't say I have this disorder but I heard about it on Medical Mysteries. I wonder what it's like hearing the world in color...
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Old 03-07-07, 07:31 AM
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I don't have this, although like quite a few people I have strongish color associations with numbers, letters, days of the week, and (to a lesser extent) months of the year. A while back, someone linked me to a research site where you could complete an interactive survey on the subject...you had to pick a color for each letter it gave you, twice, and it mixed them up so that you might not remember which color you gave each letter.

My results indicated I had "very strong" color associations which didn't change from trial to trial. Very interesting. Led me to wonder why some people would have much stronger associations than others.

I distinctly recall my particular letter-color associations upsetting me in early school years. Partially because all my teachers had the alphabet cut out of paper and posted around the room, and I always thought their colors were WRONG. Partially because I was certain that some letters felt "uglier" than others (because they weren't bright, pretty colors), and I felt so bad for the ones that felt "ugly" (like Q, which is a dark, murky green) that I cried and tried to block out my own associations so I would see all the letters as an equally attractive basic black.

...*blush* Well, I was little.
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Old 03-10-07, 12:06 AM
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Bean,
Your 'words' remind me...

of:

The I KNOW rule:
That which is personal experience.

and:

The ASSUMED TO KNOW rule:

That which is not personal experience..but is assumed as 'such'.


Go with I KNOW.
Even, if it seems as a less 'amount', than 'ASSUMED'.

Truth will never fail.




Quote:
Originally Posted by Bean Delphiki
I don't have this, although like quite a few people I have strongish color associations with numbers, letters, days of the week, and (to a lesser extent) months of the year. A while back, someone linked me to a research site where you could complete an interactive survey on the subject...you had to pick a color for each letter it gave you, twice, and it mixed them up so that you might not remember which color you gave each letter.

My results indicated I had "very strong" color associations which didn't change from trial to trial. Very interesting. Led me to wonder why some people would have much stronger associations than others.

I distinctly recall my particular letter-color associations upsetting me in early school years. Partially because all my teachers had the alphabet cut out of paper and posted around the room, and I always thought their colors were WRONG. Partially because I was certain that some letters felt "uglier" than others (because they weren't bright, pretty colors), and I felt so bad for the ones that felt "ugly" (like Q, which is a dark, murky green) that I cried and tried to block out my own associations so I would see all the letters as an equally attractive basic black.

...*blush* Well, I was little.
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