I’ve seen several studies lately on attention and focus, usually articles aimed at improving your web design or manipulating your readers by location-targeted ad placements. Prime screen attention areas can be determined by equipment that monitors eye movements across a page. The focus can be extrapolated from the amount of time the eye remains fixed on an area.
While there’s alot to be said for this type of data, there’s an underlying flaw in relying on it. The studies all assume that just because an eye is pointed at, and even focused on, a particular area, that the owner of that eye is actually seeing what is being shown. This is not always true.
As an example of what I’m talking about, I point you to this video, which I first found over at Seth’s Blog, and then later in several other places. Once you see it, you will see why it is becoming so virally popular.
In the video, you will be asked to count something. It’s a really very simple exercise in attention, and is even a bit fun. Go ahead and try, it only takes a minute. I tried it, and I missed it.
Awareness Test from DoTheTest.co.uk
I am Jon, and I missed it.