A person walks into Times Square and sees something like the top of the above image: vibrant colors, people crossing 43rd Street in the distance, but with little clarity in the periphery. A poor stray cat wanders in and sees something like the bottom image: the colors aren’t as vibrant, distance is blurrier, but peripheral vision is much clearer.
The renderings above were created by Nickolay Lamm–he of the NYC wealth map and interplanetary city visualizations–who spoke to several veterinarians and ophthalmologists to nail down the specifics of kitty vision. As Wired points out, cats don’t have it all bad: thanks to an abundance of rods, a particular kind of eye cell, their night vision is vastly better than humans’.
See more images in the gallery.