In March, members of the MIRAGE lab (Roger, Hayley, Kristy, Tash, Mark, Katie and honoury member Ellen Howard) bravely set off for four days of intense finger strecthing at the national Big Bang Science Festival held at the Birmingham NEC.
The event was attended by nearly 70,000 visitors and was bursting with interactive exhibits including spacecraft adventures, chemistry explosions and even giant noses. Needless to say the MIRAGE fitted in perfectly.
As part of the British Psychology Society (BPS) stand we used the MIRAGE to explain to children (and adults) about body ownership and multsensory integration, or more simply, how your brain knows you have a body. Word soon got round that the BPS stand had an extraordinary box than could stretch fingers or even make whole hands disappear and it wasn’t long before we had constant queues of excited familes and students eager to try it out. Although there are few things more tiring than non-stop MIRAGE-ing, it was worth it for the reaction to the illusions – from laughing and shrieking through to pure disbelief – and the chance to demonstrate the varied ways that we’re using MIRAGE for research.