Sibrel and colleagues investigated how color influences perceptions of quantity. They share that “Interpreting colormap visualizations requires determining how dimensions of color in visualizations map onto quantities in data. People have color-based biases that influence their interpretations of colormaps, such as a dark-is-more bias—darker colors map to larger quantities.
Chen and Cabrera set out to better understand how color influences experiences in concert halls using virtual reality depictions of concert halls; select surfaces were one color or another, depending on the test condition. They report that study participants rated “loudness, reverberance, and their visual and auditory preference for multiple virtual reality scenes of a concert hall with various colors and with a music excerpt of various levels of gain and reverberation time.
Wang and Chang link colors seen and tastes tasted. They studied colors used on popcorn packaging and report that “Four experimental package design colors (red, blue, yellow, and white) and three popcorn tastes (sweet, salty, and tasteless) were used to evaluate whether the pretasting and posttasting evaluations were affected by package color and product taste.
Iqbal and Abubakar confirm how useful outdoor restorative spaces can be. They report that “During the pandemic, the frontline healthcare workers experience intense anxiety, stress, burnout, and psychological breakdown, with severe implications on their mental and physical well-being. In addition to these implications, anxiety and stress can hinder their productivity and ability to perform their duties efficiently. The literature indicates that hospital gardens and contact with nature can help alleviate psychological distress among hospital staff. . . .
Sato and colleagues’ work confirms that many factors influence what we see. They share that they “asked observers their perception of the appearance of the Necker cube placed at any of the five angles in the space of virtual reality. There were two patterns of neck movement, vertical and horizontal. . . . results indicate that perception was modulated [influenced] by the posture of the neck.”
Chen and Spence investigated how smelling particular sorts of odors influenced perceptions of facial attractiveness; it seems likely that their findings can also be applied in other contexts. The researchers report that they studied “whether the presentation of a range of pleasant fragrances, containing both floral and fruity notes, would modulate people’s judgements of the facial attractiveness . . . of a selection of typical female faces varying in age in the range 20–69 years. . . .
Benedetti and colleagues learned that the lighting of places where people are working influences how well they sleep at night. The team reports that they “tested the effects of optimized dynamic daylight and electric lighting on circadian phase of melatonin, cortisol and skin temperatures in office workers. We equipped one office room with an automated controller for blinds and electric lighting, optimized for dynamic lighting (= Test room), and a second room without any automated control (= Reference room).
Researchers have investigated responses to wood used in built environments in cities; it is possible that their findings are relevant in other contexts. A press release from the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology reports that a recent study based there “examines how timber construction can make a comeback in cities. Its proposition is that more color is the key to greater acceptance. . . . the requirements of present-day urban planning are forming entirely new connections with the structural principles of timber construction. . . . The authors . . .
Shi, Mai, and Mo investigated links between the shapes of products and the opinions formed of them. They report that “this research explores how anthropomorphic products’ humanlike body shapes influence consumer evaluation and purchase intention (PI). Findings . . . indicate that a chubby product shape is more likely to trigger perceptions of Agreeableness, whereas a thin humanized shape is more likely to trigger perceptions of Conscientiousness.
Trupp and colleagues learned that there are significant psychological benefits to looking at visual art and cultural content electronically, even for brief periods of time. The researchers report that “When experienced in-person, engagement with art has been associated—in a growing body of evidence—with positive outcomes in wellbeing and mental health. . . . Participants [in this study] . . .