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  • I think I know what synesthesia is.

  • It's sort of like what happens when you're tripping.

  • [Do you have synesthesia?]

  • Different parts of your brain control the sensation of the perception of vision, or of hearing, or of smell, or of taste, and a lot of those areas in the brain are neighbors.

  • My name is Nadia Ortelt, and I'm a DIY neuroscientist.

  • In some people, the connection between those neighboring areas is much stronger than in other people, and those people have synesthesia.

  • They can see colors associated with numbers, or shapes, or letters, or words.

  • I'm Jordan.

  • I'm Justin.

  • And we both have synesthesia, and we're dating.

  • Well, I see every letter has a color, and every number has a color.

  • So, I had it my whole life, and I thought it was totally normal to associate colors and numbers and letters in my head.

  • All my numbers are...they kind of correspond with the rainbow.

  • I have, like, ideas about, like, the personality of numbers.

  • "Seven" is kind of a jerk.

  • "Three" is like a really nice guy.

  • It's a good number.

  • People of synesthesia are usually much better at memorizing things.

  • Because they always have two associations with every idea, or object, or thing.

  • I remember distinctly like when I was a little kid remembering my phone number, my first phone number, with colors.

  • Green, green, gold, red, red, gold, gold.

  • My name's actually really ugly.

  • I don't like the way it looks.

  • It is estimated that 1 in 200 people might have some form of synesthesia.

  • Synesthesia is actually a really common condition, but also it's how our brains work most of the time.

  • So you can do this really simple experiment at home to see what synesthesia actually looks like.

  • Cut out a bunch of shapes, some like this, that are kind of pointy and spiky, and some like this, which are round and a bit softer.

  • Put all these shapes in front of your friend, and ask them to associate the two of them with one of two categories.

  • One which is a nonsense word "Kiki," and the other which is a nonsense word "Bouba.".

  • Who are "Kiki" and "Bouba"?

  • They're like Miyazaki characters.

  • "Kiki" kind of sounds like spiky and sharp, and "Bouba" kind of sounds round and soft.

  • And you'll find that actually everybody associates these types of shapes with "Kiki," and these types of shapes with "Bouba.".

  • Everyone feels this way?

  • That's creepy.

  • No, that's not how it works.

  • Is that how it works?

  • I have no control over my mind.

  • Oh, that looks exactly like what I did.

  • I guess everyone has a little bit of synesthesia in them.

  • Wow!

I think I know what synesthesia is.

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B1 US synesthesia kiki spiky phone number gold nonsense

Can You Hear Colors?!

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    Derek posted on 2020/04/18
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