The Psychology of Touch

By Morton A. Heller; William Schiff | Go to book overview

CHAPTER 13
CONCLUSIONS: THE FUTURE OF TOUCH

M. A. Heller W. Schiff

Much progress has been made in the field in the past 10 to 15 years. We have seen a large increase in research on haptics and intermodal relations. We should point out that a great deal remains to be learned. Some theoretical problems have proven amenable to study, yet difficult issues persist. It is likely that we will see considerable progress in the field over the next decade. Some research will be prompted by concerns about application, as in robotic design, while other studies will stem from interests in fundamental theoretical issues.

What message should the reader of this book come away with? There are really many important themes described in this book, but two overriding points stand out. First, any adequate account of touch needs to consider the appropriateness of the level of analysis that is chosen. It is possible to approach a research problem from a sensory, perceptual, or cognitive perspective. All of these approaches are certainly valid. Some researchers have opted to investigate a particular problem from a sensory standpoint, and believe that sensory sorts of explanations may be most parsimonious. Others, however, have pointed out content areas where higher, cognitive processes must be invoked to explain the data. Millar, for example, has noted that it is important to consider a multiplicity of factors to explain the production and recognition of drawings, including the roles of representation, memory, and cognition. An adequate account of vibrotactile pattern recognition may require consideration of higher level cognitive functioning (see chapter by Sherrick, this volume). It is difficult to understand hemispheric laterality ef

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The Psychology of Touch
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Preface ix
  • References x
  • References xi
  • Chapter 1 Introduction 1
  • Part I Sensory Phenomena 21
  • References 22
  • Chapter 2 Sensory and Physiological Bases of Touch 23
  • References 55
  • Chapter 3 Thermal Sensibility 61
  • References 87
  • Chapter 14 Pain Responsiveness 91
  • References 111
  • References 112
  • Part II Development and Intermodal Relations 115
  • References 117
  • Chapter 5 Intermodality Relations: Vision and Touch 119
  • References 135
  • Chapter 6 the Development of Haptic Perception During Infancy 139
  • Part III Tactile Pattern Perception 163
  • References 166
  • Chapter 7 Haptic Perception of Form: Activity and Stimulus Attributes 169
  • Chapter 8 Vibrotactile Pattern Perception: Some Findings and Applications 189
  • References 213
  • Chapter 9 Braille 219
  • References 235
  • References 238
  • Chapter 10 Haptic Perception in Blind People 239
  • Chapter 11 Tactile Pictures 263
  • References 296
  • Chapter 12 a Reversed Lag in the Recognition and Production of Tactual Drawings: Theoretical Implications for Haptic Coding 301
  • References 323
  • Chapter 13 Conclusions: the Future of Touch 327
  • References 336
  • Author Index 339
  • Subject Index 349
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