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## Generic View

A Scenario: You are presented with a cube. You are not allowed to touch this cube but you can maneuver yourself so that you can see all but one side of the cube. Each of the other five sides you can see are flat, colored blue and have a yellow star in the center. What is your first assumption concerning the appearance of the sixth side which you can not see? You have to assume it also is flat and blue with a yellow star. You assume this because all evidence gained from the other sides would point to such an appearance of the sixth side and we have no reason to think it might be different. It would be silly to assume the other side actually has holes in it, is colored green and has pink Xs in each corner because you have no evidence to support it. This is how you interpret most images you see - assuming the simplest explanation.

Your eyes and brain work under a system often called the Generic View Principle. This principle takes known information and assumes the simplest possibility for unknown information. In other words, this principle assumes you are seeing an object from a generic view, or a non-accidental view. When you viewed the cube you assumed that seeing the cube in a way that could be seen from any angle, not just the specific angle you were set at.

## Generic View and Dimension

 Given the two-dimensional image of two lines in Figure 1, the Generic View Principle explains why we assume that these two lines meet to forma V-shape. We assume that we are viewing these two lines from a generic, or general, view. We can look at these two lines at any point in space, three-dimensions, and they would remain together at one end. What are the chances, however, that this assumption is incorrect? Perhaps the two lines actually would look like the two lines in Figure 2 if we were to view them at any other point in space. Yet looking at Figure 1, we still assume that our initial perception is correct and that these two lines do meet to form a V-shape.    This type of assumption is built into our thinking automatically by the Generic View Principle. We teach ourselves to assume that any intersection of lines in two dimensions also occurs in three dimensions. This part of the Generic View Principle is key in interpreting pictures correctly. Similarly to the Generic View Principle, however, these assumptions do not always prove correct.