A Problematic Pattern (09-19-19)

A recent press release from the Association for Psychological Science indicates that there is an issue with the design of the most recently released iPhone.  The press release reports that “The three camera lenses on the new Pro and Pro Max phones have sparked reactions from people who suffer from trypophobia—a fear of clusters of small holes like those found in English muffins, honeycomb, or lotus flowers. . . . complaints about the iPhone design have drawn attention to a seminal 2013 study published in Psychological Science.  Vision scientists Geoff Cole and Arnold Wilkins. . . . compared 76 images of objects obtained from a trypophobia website, and found that the objects have relatively high contrast energy at midrange spatial frequencies in comparison to control images. More importantly, they found that a variety of poisonous animals—including the king cobra, the blue-ringed octopus, and the deathstalker scorpion—share this same spectral characteristic. . . . ‘We found that people who don’t have the phobia still rate trypophobic images as less comfortable to look at than other images’ [Cole].”  The image of a blue-ringed octopus here (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blue-ringed_octopus) illustrates the problematic dot pattern.

“Newest iPhones Draw Attention to Research on Fear of Holes.”  2019.  Press release, Association for Psychological Science, https://www.psychologicalscience.org/publications/observer/obsonline/new...