Eyes are gorgeous, amiright? Many people say they’re the most attractive quality in another person. But did you know there’s a lot of weird stuff going on in them? They’re capable of more than we realize, and in some cases more incapable than we thought. So the next time someone compliments your eyes, hit them back with one of these interesting facts.
1. We’re basically mutated, animal-hybrid super-humans.
We’re like sharks. No, really. Our corneas are so similar to theirs that some doctors have used shark corneas during human eye surgery as a replacement.
We have a special communication with dogs through our eyes, too. Humans and dogs are the only known animals that can pick up on visual cues from someone else’s eyes, and dogs don’t even do it with each other. They just do it with people.
We also used to all have brown eyes, but then someone developed a genetic mutation that caused their eyes to be blue. Now there are all these genetically mutated blue-eyed folks who have a common ancestor!
2. We process what we see in strange ways.
Did you know we’re actually only capable of processing three colors? You might guess the primaries: blue, red, and yellow. But instead of yellow we see blue, red, and green. Everything else we see is a combination of these colors.
There are some colors that are too complex for us to see at all. These are called “impossible colors.”
The images sent from our eyes to our brains are also sent upside down and backward. Ultra weird.
3. Our eyes are super fast and powerful.
They can process about 36,000 bits of information per hour, and they can also focus on 50 things per second. That’s a lot faster than any man-made camera is capable of doing.
In fact, our eye muscles are the most active in our body. A blink lasts around 100 to 150 milliseconds. They’re so fast that they’re incapable of smooth movement unless we’re focusing on a moving object.
4. Doctors can tell us a lot just by looking at our eyes.
Apparently there’s a really simple eye exam for schizophrenia, and it has a 98.3 percent accuracy rate. One part of the exam, for example, tests whether the person can keep a fixed gaze on a stationary object. People with schizophrenia often have trouble with this.
And for other sicknesses you might be able to catch some symptoms on your own. For example, if only one eye shows up red in photographs then that might be a sign of eye cancer. (This would, of course, be very troubling. If you have noticed this sign, make an appointment with an ophthalmologist right away. The good news is that most people survive this cancer with treatment.)
5. Our vision has more to do with our brain than our eyes.
As mentioned earlier, images are sent from our eyes to our brain. When you have poor vision, it’s often a problem stemming from the visual cortex of the brain instead of the eyes themselves.
One last cool thing about your eyes? They use about 65 percent of your brain power. That’s more than any other part of your body.