How is the color of an object determined by the brain?


I know that no object has a definite color that exist outside of the brains interpretation of the light being reflected off if an object. So if I say the ball is red what I am actually saying is in my mind I visualize the ball as red. That being said color must be a subjective experience and that color assignment is a mental activity? I would follow up to ask is it possible that different brains assign different colors to the same object? The real simple question would have been how do all humans see the same objects having the same colors? TIA ELI5

In: 1

Humans have cone cells that respond to different wavelengths of light. Each color we see is a representation of how each type of cone cell is responding at what intensity to any given input. Most people have three types of cone cells which sort of loosely correspond to red, green, and blue. Really it’s much larger areas of the visible light spectrum.

Humans simply assign names to the inputs. Now there’re people with four types of cone cells which can interpret more color variation and there are people with issues seeing certain colors like with colorblindness. So it’s going to vary slightly between humans.

Only the name of the color is arbitration assigned. The wavelength of the light determines the color. Baring a deficiency in your eyes or optic nerves what you see as red i will see the same within a small margin of error.

Let’s start from the beginning.

1. Light bounces off of a red delicious apple. Not all of the light that hit it bounces though. Some of the light got absorbed into the apple.

2. The light that did bounce hits the back of your retina. Special cells there absorb that light and can tell which wavelengths hit it.

3. Those cells then send that information along the optic nerve, and back to the brain, specifically the part close to the back of your neck.

4. From there, your brain takes the information and interprets it into an image.

So it’s silly to say that “there is no color outside the wavelengths of light we see” because that’s what color is. It’s like saying there’s no smells outside the chemicals that get into our nose.

The sticking point you’re on is that we have no way of guaranteeing what the interpretation in step 4. actually looks like to anyone other than yourself. This is because we all learned what “red” meant by being taught the same thing other people say red means. So no matter what interpretation your brain makes, you use the same language to describe “red” as everyone else.

There are some misleading answers, ignoring the actual question here, which is about subjective perception and [qualia](

The objective physical response to light wavelengths, in the molecules in our eyes’ cone cells, has zero predictive or explanatory utility, on the issue of our subjective perception of “redness”.

It’s not known how qualia arise from the brain’s collective neuron activity. (We do know that certain brain damage will prevent perception of sight, even with no damage to the eyes.)

So there’s no way for a person to compare their perception of “redness” with anyone else’s perception. Again, that’s covered in a discussion of *qualia*.