What are your favourite effects-with-a-name?

I think the Purkinje effect has to be one of my favourites - partly just because I like the name - but also, because you can more or less sum it up as ‘all colours look the same in the dark’ - which starts off sounding (on the face of it) delightfully idiotic - but it’s not.

The Leidenfrost effect, of course.

Just like with your example, being fun to say was part of it, but also…it’s a really neat effect.

Does it count if it doesn’t have “effect” in the name?


I’ve always liked the Placebo effect. Not only for the way it sounds, but for what the effect is and how it works.

The Land Effect. Just when you think you’ve figured out how tristimulus color theory works, and can prove it by calculating the color coordinates of something just from its spectrum alone, this comes along and throws all that in the garbage.

Named after Edwin Land, inventor of Pollaroid, the Polaroid Instant Camera, Polavision, and lots of other stuff.



The Dunning–Kruger effectis a cognitive bias wherein relatively unskilled individuals suffer from illusory superiority, mistakenly assessing their ability to be much higher than is accurate.

Dunning and Kruger proposed that, for a given skill, incompetent people will:
[li]fail to recognize their own lack of skill[/li][li]fail to recognize genuine skill in others[/li][li]fail to recognize the extent of their inadequacy[/li][li]recognize and acknowledge their own lack of skill, after they are exposed to training for that skill[/li][/ul]

The only one I can even think of is one that a work-buddy and I made up using a co-worker’s surname as the basis of an acronym:

Retro Obfuscating Stultification Effect.

This guy had the ability – much like The Shadow who could cloud men’s minds so they could not see him – to drain the sense from any conversation just by joining in.

(You are free to use this one; it’s not copyrighted. :slight_smile: )

Stroop effect.

Absolutely. It just really needs to be a phenomenon with a specific name.

Babinski reflex is fun to say and do and it works on zombies.

The Baader-Meinhof phenomenon. When you learn something new, you start seeing it everywhere.

How about a scale, rather than an effect? I like the Bristol Scale.

Gravitational Lensing always had a ring to it for me. Pun sorta intended.

Plus it’s a cool effect of GR as well.

I hope the originators of the scale did not also choreograph the Bristol Stomp.:stuck_out_tongue:

Hey that’s what I was going to say!

Being nothing if not a small-minded, petty and vindictive man who enjoys nothing more than a bit of Schadenfreude, I’d have to say the Streisand effect.

You know who else had a favourite effect? Godwin.

The Cocktail Party Effect. The ability to focus on one conversation in a roomful of them.

The Dunlop Cry Baby

The Hawthorne effect: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hawthorne_effect. The effect of the observer on the observed.