A movie set can be a great place to bring home some of the best movies in the world.
But what if it also makes you feel like you’re watching a movie with your eyes closed?
A new study from the MIT Media Lab suggests that you can make your house feel like one.
In the study, participants who were asked to “see” a movie in their living room while being asked to identify its color, light, and sound effects were able to identify the colors and sound that they’d seen in the movie better than those who had to look at the screen to identify them.
The study was done in collaboration with MIT Media Labs and was published on August 17.
The researchers were interested in whether they could identify the sound of a movie from the color of the light that was shining through a screen.
“The ability to identify sound by seeing color in a movie theater was a very important task for film users, especially for people with disabilities,” said Rui Liu, a professor of computer science and engineering at MIT Media and one of the study’s authors.
“But it’s also important to look to color in movies, and we wanted to see if we could learn something about what people experience when they look at a screen and are told that it’s red, green, and blue.”
Liu and his team used an experimental design that was designed to look for changes in perceived color, brightness, and contrast.
“We wanted to study what it’s like to be an ordinary human in a place that is so special and unique,” Liu said.
In addition to the visual identification, the researchers found that the participants who had been asked to visually identify the color changes in the film did better than the control group.
“They could see more colors and they could see the difference in contrast,” Liu told Al Jazeera.
“So it’s really exciting that they were able, on average, to identify sounds and colors better than a group of people who had not been told that the sound was red and the color was blue.”
“We’re all seeing colors, and it’s interesting that we can actually use those colors and the contrast in a video,” Liu added.
“If you want to be able to see the differences in colors, you can use a computer.”
The researchers used a method known as “color space analysis” to examine the differences between participants who identified sounds and others who did not.
“This is an important thing to do because when you see a movie you might see one color, but if you see the sound it might be different,” Liu explained.
“You can see if the colors are the same and that they’re the same contrast, and that gives you the opportunity to see how they change over time.”
The research was supported by the National Science Foundation and the Howard Hughes Medical Institute.