Perception and Psychophysics

Covers all areas of research in sensory processes, perception, attention, and psychophysics. Includes reports on experimental work, reviews, and issue commentary important to researchers.

Articles from Vol. 69, No. 6, August

A Central Performance Drop with Luminance Stimuli Requiring Spatial Integration
This study reports four experiments that analyzed detection performance for luminance contrasts as a function of retinal eccentricity in order to find further support and explanations for the central performance drop (CPD) in the fovea. In the first...
A Memory-Based Interference Effect in Midstream Order Deficit
People do not accurately recognize the relative order of a letter sequence displayed in a rapid serial visual presentation when the letter sequence is presented repeatedly and the exposure of the letters is very brief in the first half of the presentation....
Are Spatial and Temporal Attention Independent?
Participants searched for one of two target letters in a rapid serial visual presentation (RSVP) sequence of 17 successive frames, each containing four letters arranged into a box around a central fixation point. In control trial blocks, the participants...
Binocular Contrast Interactions in Two-Frame Motion Discrimination
Previous studies have shown that two-frame motion detection thresholds are elevated if one frame's contrast is raised, despite the increase in average contrast-the "contrast paradox." In this study, we investigated if such contrast interactions occurred...
Consequences of Display Changes during Interrupted Visual Search: Rapid Resumption Is Target Specific
Visual search can be resumed more rapidly following a brief interruption to an old display than it can be initiated on a new display, pointing to a critical role for memory in search (Lleras, Rensink, & Enns, 2005). Here, we examine how this rapid...
Creation of Visual Long-Term Memory
Currently, it is not known by which mechanisms novel visual representations are stored in long-term memory (LTM). Here we report evidence that visual working memory (WM) plays an important role in the formation of visual LTM. By varying exposure times...
Detection Theory Analysis of Scaling and Discrimination Tasks: Responses to Noxious Thermal Stimuli
This study's main purpose was to examine the sensitivity estimates obtained from scaling and discrimination approaches for nociception assessment in healthy individuals. This investigation may inform future applications in diagnostic procedures for painful...
Effects of Spatial Separation between Stimuli in Whole Report from Brief Visual Displays
Direct measurements of the effects of spatial separation between stimuli in whole report from brief visual displays are reported. The stimuli were presented on the periphery of an imaginary circle centered on fixation. In Experiment 1, each display showed...
Effects of Texture and Shape on Perceived Time to Passage: Knowing "What" Influences Judging "When"
In the present study, we examined whether it is easier to judge when an object will pass one's head if the object's surface is textured. There are three reasons to suspect that this might be so: First, the additional (local) optic flow may help one judge...
Feeling Darkness: A Visually Induced Somatosensory Illusion
Although the five primary senses have traditionally been thought of as separate, examples of their interactions, as well as the neural substrate possibly underlying them, have been identified. Arm position sense, for example, depends on touch, proprioception,...
Listeners Judge Talker Sex More Efficiently from Male Than from Female Vowels
Speech routinely provides cues as to the sex of the talker; in voiced sounds, these cues mainly reflect dimorphism in vocal anatomy. This dimorphism is not symmetrical, however, since during adolescent development, males specifically diverge from a previously...
Localization of Moving Sound
The final position of a moving sound source usually appears to be displaced in the direction of motion. We tested the hypothesis that this phenomenon, termed auditory representational momentum, is already emerging during, not merely after, the period...
Perception of Illuminance Flow in the Case of Anisotropic Rough Surfaces
Human observers estimate the illumination direction of rough surfaces rather precisely. When surfaces are rough, the illumination generates visible "texture" from differential shading at the level of the roughness, whereas differential illumination at...
Perceptual Learning in Monocular Pattern Masking: Experiments and Explanations by the Twin Summation Gain Control Model of Contrast Processing
We investigated practice effects on contrast thresholds for target patterns. Results showed that practice decreased contrast thresholds when targets were presented on maskers. Thresholds tended to decrease more at the higher end of the masker contrast...
Similarity and Categorization of Environmental Sounds
Four experiments investigated the acoustical correlates of similarity and categorization judgments of environmental sounds. In Experiment 1, similarity ratings were obtained from pairwise comparisons of recordings of 50 environmental sounds. A three-dimensional...
Statistical Information and Coarticulation as Cues to Word Boundaries: A Matter of Signal Quality
We investigated how statistical information in the form of transitional probabilities (TPs) interacts with coarticulation, another sublexical cue to word boundaries, and examined the impact of signal quality on the weighting of these cues. In an artificial-language-learning...
The Effects of Positive versus Negative Feedback on Information-Integration Category Learning
A number of studies have shown that in category learning, providing feedback about errors allows faster learning than providing feedback about correct responses. However, these previous studies used explicit, rule-based tasks in which the category structures...
The Influence of Eye-Gaze and Arrow Pointing Distractor Cues on Voluntary Eye Movements
We investigated Ricciardelli et al.'s (2002) claim, that the tendency for gaze direction to elicit automatic attentional following is unique to biologically significant information. Participants made voluntary saccades to targets on the left or the right...
The Role of Auditory Memory Traces in Attention to Frequency
Three cued signal detection experiments demonstrated a role for auditory memory traces in frequency selectivity. The extent to which the cue predicted the signal frequency affected the size of the advantage for signals at the cue frequency over those...
The Subjective Size of Visual Stimuli Affects the Perceived Duration of Their Presentation
The perception of time spent looking at a stimulus is lengthened or shortened when its physical attributes, such as area, differ from those of a comparison stimulus. We measured the perceived presentation duration of a visual object whose apparent area...
Threshold Recognition of Phantom-Contour Objects Requires Constant Contrast Velocity
Recognition of phantom objects-those with contours defined by rapid contrast reversal of adjacent fields of dark and light random dots-was investigated under conditions of abrupt or ramped onset and offset Discrimination contrast thresholds were determined...
Transient Covert Attention Does Alter Appearance: A Reply to Schneider (2006)
We recently demonstrated that transient covert attention increases the apparent contrast of a stimulus (Carrasco, Ling, & Read, 2004). Schneider (2006) proposes that the observed increase in apparent contrast is largely due to sensory interactions...
What Dot Clusters and Bar Graphs Reveal: Subitizing Is Fast Counting and Subtraction
In two studies, we found that dot enumeration tasks resulted in shallow-sloped response time (RT) functions for displays of 1-4 dots and steep-sloped functions for displays of 5-8 dots, replicating results implicating subitizing and counting processes...
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