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Azrael 5
6th June 2009, 09:33 AM
Actual video not a flash player thingy! Freaked me out twice,and everyone who has seen it! I changed my mind on some of the tests too before the reveal!
http://www.bbc.co.uk/bbcthree/videohub/esptest.shtml

Please no revealing method if you somehow figure it, I'm happy to be fooled occasionally! :)

Denver
6th June 2009, 10:40 AM
I got the entire test wrong.

But, I didn't know a video could pause itself automatically like it did.
That was the coolest part for me.

Unlike a Bull
6th June 2009, 10:54 AM
Well, I got all three wrong. Apparently I don't possess natural psychic ability. But, I had a .512 probability of getting them all wrong so ... yea.

Also, you say that you got freaked out twice. Does this mean you got the right shape twice? If I did my binomial right (I'm not all that good at probabilities) you had a .096 probability of getting two out of three. Almost one in ten.

thaiboxerken
6th June 2009, 11:04 AM
Blah blah..boring. Bad thing is, this kind of thing actually does fool people into believing the woo.

Leftus
6th June 2009, 11:10 AM
From the video - "Only 20% of people are successful on this first attempt."

As a transmitter, Ivan sucks.

Azrael 5
6th June 2009, 11:19 AM
Im beginning to get an inkling of part of the method. It requires an assistant to operate the test, so working it solo won't get results! ;)
How/where the assistant learns the method I dunno.

Big Les
7th June 2009, 06:14 AM
I too didn't get a single one right. Where's the scary?

Horatius
7th June 2009, 06:54 AM
From the video - "Only 20% of people are successful on this first attempt."

As a transmitter, Ivan sucks.

But, amazingly, his success rate is exactly 1/5! And there were 5 shapes! What are the odds??!?!

;)

JFrankA
7th June 2009, 07:09 AM
I got the entire test wrong.

But, I didn't know a video could pause itself automatically like it did.
That was the coolest part for me.

I'm in complete agreement with you on this:

how'd they get the video to pause? I wanna learn how to do that.

(That was the most amazing bit to me. I knew they were going to choose the star because every mentalist knows that the star is the one people will pick most of the time).

Safe-Keeper
7th June 2009, 09:52 AM
I was 100% sure it'd be that old trick of making you concentrate on one card, which you wanted replaced by another card, for then to replace all the cards without you noticing because you focused so much on one of them.

Instead it's that tired old trick in which they know most people pick certain objects over others, and then use those statistics to pretend they're reading minds.

thatguywhojuggles
7th June 2009, 10:37 AM
I kept picking the square... I kept picking wrong. No million dollars for me!

I did notice if you play the video again, it picks a different one.

zooterkin
7th June 2009, 11:04 AM
I'm in complete agreement with you on this:

how'd they get the video to pause? I wanna learn how to do that.

(That was the most amazing bit to me. I knew they were going to choose the star because every mentalist knows that the star is the one people will pick most of the time).

Hmm, that's interesting; I chose the star, but it was never the one chosen on the video. Are you saying it was chosen when you watched it?

Patricio Elicer
7th June 2009, 11:19 AM
I got all wrong....

Darat
7th June 2009, 11:33 AM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/bbcthree/videohub/explanation.shtml

zooterkin
7th June 2009, 12:03 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/bbcthree/videohub/explanation.shtml

Ah, that explains it. And I'm not at all surprised that this isn't really old footage.

blobru
7th June 2009, 12:13 PM
I got all wrong....

Me too. :(

Blame it on Ivan Leonov's fashion sense. If one of the cards had been "teh black turtleneck", I would have scored 100%.

JFrankA
7th June 2009, 12:36 PM
Hmm, that's interesting; I chose the star, but it was never the one chosen on the video. Are you saying it was chosen when you watched it?

All three of my "tests" were the star.

Now I know how/why the video is paused. It redirects you to another video as part of the script. Very sneaky.... :)

Metullus
7th June 2009, 12:47 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/bbcthree/videohub/explanation.shtmlI got 100% - weird.

Evidently I am not permitted to view the video to which Darat linked...

Wowbagger
7th June 2009, 12:56 PM
how'd they get the video to pause? I wanna learn how to do that.It's a Flash-based video. You can embed "pause" queues into it, using the Adobe Media Encoder (and the player would have to be written to pick up on them).

Alternatively, it could be done with JavaScript. I have seen Internet-based video clip editors that allow the user to pause a video between a range of the spots, that they wish to examine.

Lucky
7th June 2009, 01:39 PM
It obviously couldn't be a real 'old VHS in my parent's attic', because of the self-pausing - I didn't even realise we were supposed to believe that part.

Interesting, isn't it, that on a skeptics' forum people would confidently post the wrong explanation without (apparently) subjecting their hypothesis to some simple tests. I have noticed before on this forum that, in their zeal to debunk 'woo', people will snatch at the first non-paranormal explanation that comes into their heads, however implausible, and insist it must be right (also happens in Conjuror's Corner).

I tried it once, and got all three - the star each time. That's likely to be a common result - see the real explanation. But I wasn't satisfied with the 'tired old' statistical explanation, so did some investigating. Obviously, the first thing to find out was whether the cards were the same every time.

I wasn't thinking in terms of a 'magic' trick - hadn't noticed the 'misdirection' to get you to use an assistant - so I just assumed there was something that increased the probability of correct guesses beyond chance. The question was then: it either is or isn't using feedback from me to 'guess' my choice. Seemed likely that it was, given that (i) the elaborate setup makes it possible, and (ii) it would give the best results. If so, it had to be something to do with the mouse-click, so I tried varying everything I could about it - in particular, the length of the pause.

I did indeed get different cards - ruling out the facile statistical 'explanation'. However, I didn't notice that I was clicking in different places, so missed the crucial connection (also, as I said, I was thinking in terms of a single player, and probabilities). The only thing I could think of was that it had to do with the length of the pause - some correlation with the position of each card in the row. I wasn't happy with this (that's why I didn't post it!), but gave up as I had no more ideas - anyway, I was indeed totally wrong!

Thank you, Azrael, for getting me to waste half an hour on the fruitless attempt :rolleyes:.

jasonpatterson
7th June 2009, 01:47 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/bbcthree/videohub/explanation.shtml

Ah, that explains it. And I'm not at all surprised that this isn't really old footage.

Is there any hope of sharing the trick with those who live outside the UK? :) I assume that there is some sort of cue in the video that informs you which of the shapes will be chosen next...

My favorite feature of the video is that the volume can be turned up to 11.

This reminds me of Peter Answers (http://www.peteranswers.com/), a goofy website prank that works in pairs. Here's (http://www.wikihow.com/Use-Peter-Answers) how it works.

roger
7th June 2009, 02:01 PM
Is there any hope of sharing the trick with those who live outside the UK? Here it is:

JFrankA
7th June 2009, 03:26 PM
Here it is:

Okay. That is frewkin' BRILLIANT!!!!! I wish I thought of that.

You bet your a** I'm going to use that.

And I will admit it. I was completely fooled into thinking it was just the standard mentalist trick when using Zenner Cards.

Monketey Ghost
7th June 2009, 03:38 PM
another here who got 'em all wrong.

Toke
7th June 2009, 03:38 PM
Well, I started thinking of that david copperfield video where he get you thinking of one out of 6 picture cards.

Then removes the one you are concentrating on.!!!

The trick is that he removes all and replaces them with 5 others.
The one you were concentrating on is gone and hopefully you will not notice that the others are different.

JFrankA
7th June 2009, 03:59 PM
another here who got 'em all wrong.

You are not clicking with the video....

:D

Wowbagger
7th June 2009, 04:03 PM
Well, having seen the explanation video, I can safely say that it was definately a JavaScript-based video pausing and playing system; and not "pause" queues embedded into the video. ;)

Azrael 5
7th June 2009, 04:42 PM
I should have checked the video before linking it. Then I would have known it doesn't work one on one!
But to use on someone else it is brilliant!

Michael C
8th June 2009, 03:25 AM
Hihi: very nicely done. Making it look like an old film is a clever touch.

There's more of that sort of stuff here: http://www.krazydad.com/oracle/help.php

Monketey Ghost
8th June 2009, 03:01 PM
the oracle of Andalyn

Big Les
8th June 2009, 03:19 PM
Finally it makes sense. Very clever. As for the video being old yet having a pause button in it, I just assumed that whoever had uploaded it had recreated whatever pause/play breaks/cues had been incorporated in the original VHS/Beta tape. I was too busy thinking about the content to query that. And if you've ever watched the Open University, this was a damn good approximation.

MnJohnF
12th June 2009, 08:28 AM
It's pure math, and nothing more.

The probability of getting all three correct is 1/125. They say "If you get all three right, you may have some special talent." Or something like that.

If 1000 people look at it, 8 of them will think they have a special talent. But they only made three lucky guesses that happened to be correct.

For the record, I got them all wrong. But I know that I don't have a psychic "gift" of any kind.

Cavemonster
12th June 2009, 08:56 AM
It's pure math, and nothing more.

The probability of getting all three correct is 1/125. They say "If you get all three right, you may have some special talent." Or something like that.

If 1000 people look at it, 8 of them will think they have a special talent. But they only made three lucky guesses that happened to be correct.

For the record, I got them all wrong. But I know that I don't have a psychic "gift" of any kind.

You've missed the explanation video, here's how it works for those that can't watch it.

It is meant for one person who is in on it to test their friend who is the mark.
The person being tested is supposed to sit several feet away from the screen, so their friend administering the test must push the play button after each pause. The play button is actually divided into five areas.

The upper left quadrant is the circle
The top right is the cross
The bottom left is the wavy lines
The bottom right is the square
The center is the star.

At each pause, the mark states their prediction out loud, and their friend pushes the part of the play button that corresponds to what the mark has already predicted. Then a segment of video plays where what the mark has picked is correct. The fake aged look of the video is meant to throw viewers off the trail that the trick is based on technology.

Olowkow
12th June 2009, 11:42 AM
......
For the record, I got them all wrong. But I know that I don't have a psychic "gift" of any kind.

Alas, no one does, no one.:)

Hokulele
12th June 2009, 12:59 PM
You've missed the explanation video, here's how it works for those that can't watch it.

Heh, my husband and I have a "psychic" bar trick based on the same principle, but using pennies instead of Zener cards (used to be matchsticks until everything went non-smoking), and a cocktail napkin and a drink for the cues. It worked every time, and we would get free drinks for being psychic!

And yes, we would do a reveal at the end. After the free drink.

FramerDave
12th June 2009, 03:22 PM
Anyone notice the faux cryllic font on the scientific institute's name? I really hope nobody takes this seriously.

Molinaro
12th June 2009, 05:29 PM
I picked wavy-wavy-wavy
The video picked star-square-square*

*correction, I clicked star-square-square

Typicallucas
12th June 2009, 06:36 PM
I guessed square, wavy lines, & cross... all wrong.

Big Les
14th June 2009, 10:31 AM
Yes, because you need to look at the explanation video.

Azrael 5
14th June 2009, 10:57 AM
Yes, because you need to look at the explanation video.

Maybe draw them a diagram.:p

Whiplash
14th June 2009, 11:20 AM
Heh, my husband and I have a "psychic" bar trick based on the same principle, but using pennies instead of Zener cards (used to be matchsticks until everything went non-smoking), and a cocktail napkin and a drink for the cues. It worked every time, and we would get free drinks for being psychic!

And yes, we would do a reveal at the end. After the free drink.

There is a similar one my friend and I would do at parties. Using a deck of cards. I would shuffle the cards a few times until I got something on the bottom of the deck I wanted. A card that had a large number, say 7-9, as there would be 7-9 "diamonds" (or whatever suit) laid out on the card itself in a certain layout. This was the key.

Then I would lay out the cards, on the table, in the same pattern as the bottom card of the deck. My friend is out of the room during all this. I then would ask the person to pick a card, and I would telepathically "send" this card to my friend. He would enter the room, and I would be holding the deck of cards in a manner so that he could see the bottom card, and my thumb would be placed over the specific position / card that was chosen.

Fooled people many times.

16th June 2009, 10:13 AM
Articulett figured it out. Immediately. Bah.

CynicalSkeptic
17th June 2009, 02:20 AM
Another variation on this, a friend does with his family. You have your victim draw a card, then you call your phone number and ask to talk to "the wizard" Whoever answers immediately starts through the suits "clubs... diamonds... hearts... spades" When you hear your suit, you interrupt and say "I want to talk to the wizard", the person then starts "Ace... two... three..." when he gets to the right card, you interrupt again and say "Wizard please tell this person what card he drew", and you hand the phone over.

JFrankA
17th June 2009, 02:29 PM
Articulett figured it out. Immediately. Bah.

Here's a funny story about figuring it out:

While visiting my 13-year-old son this weekend, I had to wait for him because he wasn't quite ready. My ex-wife had her laptop up and running, so I showed her the video.

Of course, she got all three tests correct. After the video was over, she kept asking me questions, trying to figure out if she had really used some kind of "psychic power" (which she believes she has), or that I was doing something to make it work. I didn't tell her the secret.

After a while of this, my son comes out of his bedroom. So I did it the test with him. By the time the video was on the third test, he guessed correctly how it works. :)

Azrael 5
17th June 2009, 03:44 PM
Here's a funny story about figuring it out:

While visiting my 13-year-old son this weekend, I had to wait for him because he wasn't quite ready. My ex-wife had her laptop up and running, so I showed her the video.

Of course, she got all three tests correct. After the video was over, she kept asking me questions, trying to figure out if she had really used some kind of "psychic power" (which she believes she has), or that I was doing something to make it work. I didn't tell her the secret.

After a while of this, my son comes out of his bedroom. So I did it the test with him. By the time the video was on the third test, he guessed correctly how it works. :)

Generally participant has to be six feet away, was your son? Easy to figure out if watching closely ;)

JFrankA
17th June 2009, 04:35 PM
Generally participant has to be six feet away, was your son? Easy to figure out if watching closely ;)

They were both the same distance away.

My son is just smarter, that's all. :)