Chimp study shows evidence of synaesthesia

first_img PausePlay% buffered00:0000:00UnmuteMuteDisable captionsEnable captionsSettingsCaptionsDisabledQuality0SpeedNormalCaptionsGo back to previous menuQualityGo back to previous menuSpeedGo back to previous menu0.5×0.75×Normal1.25×1.5×1.75×2×Exit fullscreenEnter fullscreen Common chimpanzee in the Leipzig Zoo. Image credit: Thomas Lersch, via Wikipedia. The idea was to see if chimps associate high noises with light colored objects, as people tend to do, and low noises with dark colored objects. To find out, they trained six chimps to sit in front of a computer monitor and to play a matching game. In the game, three squares are displayed, a single small one in the center of the screen and two larger ones above it. The larger squares are identical except that they are either black or white. To get a treat, the chimp must correctly identify, by touch, which of the two larger squares matches the color of the smaller one. Then to test for synaesthesia they randomly played either a high noise or a low one while the chimp was trying to choose. The test was run over and over with the small square being shown for a very short period of time. Play A human participant and chimpanzee Ai performing the task. After tallying up the results, the researchers found that the chimps did slightly better (93% versus 90%) at choosing the right colored square when matching white squares with high notes and black ones with low. This, the researchers say, shows that chimps do have some innate sense of synaesthesia.These results by themselves may not by themselves truly answer the question of whether chimps really do have some degree of synaesthesia, but they do add to the body of research on the topic, all of which suggests that such abilities are innate, rather than learned, which means that such abilities may hold the key to explaining why humans developed complex speech and chimps and other animals have not.At any rate, after finishing up with the chimps, the team did the same study with humans, but because the volunteers were so accurate at choosing the right square, they weren’t able to draw any real conclusions regarding synaesthesia, but they did find that people seem to choose more speedily when the tones “matched” the colors displayed. Citation: Chimp study shows evidence of synaesthesia (2011, December 6) retrieved 18 August 2019 from © 2011 Researches find poop-throwing by chimps is a sign of intelligencelast_img

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