Friday, March 21, 2008

Conspicuity Enhancement - On a Bike Near You!

Do some motorcycles just catch your eyes? Do some look spooky or menacing or just down right scary? Well, they are supposed to. Researchers call it "conspicuity enhancement".

According to Honda scientists, slanted headlights on the front of a motorcycle designed to look like a face, giving it an 'angry' look, are "significantly" more visible to other drivers. Chrome and bright colors may do a lot to grab cagers' eyes, but these scientists are even using Functional MRI to confirm their statements and support their research.

Many other motorcycle manufacturers, such as Triumph, Suzuki, Kawasaki, Yamaha, Ducati and Buell are catching onto this as well. Many of their bikes have face-like qualities to them, usually menacing or angry instead of warm and fuzzy. This is because the human brain recognizes these sort of features in a face and relays it to the conscious very quickly. That way, drivers' brains force the motorcycles into perception rather than filtering them out.

Here is a nice article about this research: The website.

1 comment:

Doug C said...

Strangely enough, that's one reason why I never liked the looks of these bikes.