Horizon effect

When we were in Hong Kong last year, we took the tram up to Victoria Peak. The experience is quite dramatic, crawling up an incredibly steep incline.
Since it’s on a cable, at each stop along the way you feel the sway up and down until the doors open, and of course all the blood is rushing to the back of your brain, and the world outside the train is diagonal. Multisensory displacement!

I was intrigued, then, to see the funiculaire at Sacre-Coeur in Paris.

It’s a clever design that keeps the passengers oriented in a more horizontal fashion. Simpler and easier, and between the two contrasting modes is perhaps a nice commentary on the different cultures.


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