Parallel Roads + 5 Differences


Jeff Absher struck a great find while playing an on-line game called “5 Differences“. Even though the original assignment was to spot all of the differences among these two otherwise-identical pictures, Jeff also noticed how both roads should appear parallel, yet somehow they don’t. I believe Pablo Salto-Weis Azevedo was the first person to discovered this phenomenon by accident (with his “Unbelievable Photoshop CS3 Illusion“). Few days later someone stole (?) his idea, and won the Illusion of The Year award in 2007. Anyway, ask yourself if the below roads are parallel or not? If I had to guess, the road on the right goes away from the viewer at a very different angle than the road on the left. BTW, after inspecting the illusion, can you spot all 5 differences just for fun? What are they? You can also play the original game here.

  • Myron Wyles

    I’m not sure if this is meant to be a stereoscopic illusion, but crossing your eyes while looking at it certainly makes the 5 differences obvious!

    • Myron is right! All the differences seem to glow if you approach it as a stereoscope!!!

    • Awesome Anonymous

      DUDE That is SICK

  • Brother Adrian

    I’ve spotted six differences!
    1 White line across double doors.
    2 Doorstep in doorway.
    3 Height of 3rd b/g building.
    4 Stance of left mannequin.
    5 Shape of white wispy line in front of left mannequin.
    6 Man’s shadow shape.

    • MSSTLove


    • glp

      sorry brother adrian, there are only 5.

      Look again at the white line in front of the left manequin. It only appears different due to the fact that the manequin has changed direction of her pose.

      Theirfore her shadowy figure now covers portions of the white line that it didnt cover before, and it kind of hides the shape of it. inspect it closer, you will see what i mean. The shape is identical, but her hips now intersect the lines at different places and kind of mask certain characteristics of the line, although when looked at with a less careless eye, you can easily see no difference

    • ZL123

      Woo, another optical illusion!

    • horn

      hey dude(s), the mans reflection is correct!!!! and even if it is, it’s not counted as a difference…

  • they look slightly different because one eye is looking at one picture from a slightly different angle than the other eye…maybe…

  • cgimusic

    Got them. Not too difficult. Weird illusion though.

  • Sven

    #1 His Backpack is turned around.

    #2 The Door to the Diamond store has a kickplate in one and not the other.

    #3 The door to the #5 store has a shine to it in one picture but not the other.

    #4 The Middle Skyscraper in the background is taller in one picture than the other.

    #5 The left manaquin’s head is turned in different directions in each picture.

    The streets ARE parallel.

    • Alan Litchfield

      Anyone notice that the reflection of the hitchhiker in the window is backward?

    • Sean Loh

      1st difference: His backpack is turned around.

      2nd difference: The door to the Diamond store has a doorstep in one and not the other.

      3rd difference: The door to the #5 store has a shine to it in one picture but not the other.

      4th difference: The middle skyscraper in the background is taller in one picture than the other.

      5th difference: The left manaquin’s head is turned in different directions in each picture.

      And, the roads are parallel. Our brain just sees it slanted in an angle.

  • Beebz

    Okay, never tried the ‘crossing the eyes’ thing with this type of image before… SO COOL! The differences did indeed stand out!

    On that note, I thought it was interesting that the ‘cross-eyed-image’ showed the road normally (i.e., it didn’t stand out like the differences did). Guess that means they’re parallel! :)

  • Grace

    Dude, I was on five minutes ago, and this wasn’t there!

    • Clues

      No Man I don’t have any diamonds.

    • Clues

      Look at the head of the girl in the window behind the man in both pics!

  • Roberto Martinez

    one of my favorite games to play online, and the secuels are great as well, beautifull photos!!

  • I see 5 differences in the pictures, but I think the lines are not parallel……..:)

  • Haha when they’re side by side like that, just treat it like a Magic Eye picture and when they line up, look for the obvious places that annoy your eyes because they don’t match up! Cool! (BTW the roads are they same because they line up just fine using this method. but still a neat illusion!)

  • Yo Girl 123

    Yeah? Then what are they genius?

  • Vodnad

    If you cross your eyes and match up the images, you can see that the streets actually ARE parallel!

  • Eric

    in what way is this an illusion? the two pictures appearing the same?

  • ZL123

    Yes, we’ve seen something like this here before!

  • Voigt_Meister

    Right on Brother Adrian.

    There are 6 differences!!

  • korki

    if you forget about the pavement and just concentrate on the road then you can clearly see that they are parallel

  • Terry

    Sorry Brother Adrian, but #5 of your list is incorrect. The wispy line in front of the left mannequin is the same shape if you look very closely. It just looks different because of the other difference, the flipped mannequin shadow lets you see a different part of the wispy line.

    • dawn

      sorry, placed a comment in the wrong box. But the point I wanted to make to you is if the two modeles stance are different, that is ONE difference. The fact this impacts on the wavy line as you agree is different becomes a seperate difference in its self. Cause and effect hun ! That particular method of thinking for this ‘Illusion’is the wrong one :)

  • ram

    I found them.easy

  • MOI

    the illusion is amazing

    but i cant even find two differences… O.o

    ive always sucked at those :P

  • Cara

    I’ve spotted seven differences!
    1 White line across left double doors.
    2 Doorstep in right doorway.
    3 Height of 2nd b/g building.
    4 Height of 3rd b/g building.
    5 Stance of left mannequin reverses.
    6 Man’s backpack.
    7 Man’s reflection in window facing wrong way.

  • hahahaha – I just noticed – there’s also one REALLY wrong thing in both pictures. Not one of the differences.

  • dawn

    None of you have noticed a glaring difference. The man IS closer to the 1st manaquin on the second picture than in the first. measure it. The measurements are exact at angle points in the pic, these roads ARE parallel.

  • Dave

    Something interesting:

    When I played the game at the website – and got to this same image – there was a different difference :-)

    There, the middle skyscraper was the same height. But it was ‘soles of your shoes’ on one, and ‘souls of your shoes’ on the other.

  • z2d4th

    You are all superb!

  • Grant

    The roads are parallel and it is possible to use geometry to prove it. What’s even easier is to just take a straight edge and compare the vanishing points on the roads. If you have a line directly through those and the middle and side lines are perpendicular to your straight edge then they are parallel because I don’t feel like typing the proof.

  • What the problem? Was very simple!

  • Hexadecimus

    To cheat:
    · Cross eyes until images overlap.
    · Relax vision so they appear as one image.
    · Differences will shimmer.

  • c

    6th difference: look at the white line in the glass in front of the mannequin in both pictures.

  • Groundhog

    Why is the reflection of the man an opposite direction from his arm? His arm is reaching to the right and the reflection goes to the left.

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