Forward displacements of fading objects in motion: the role of transient signals in perceiving position
journal contributionposted on 2023-06-07, 13:27 authored by G. W. Maus, Romi Nijhawan
Visual motion causes mislocalisation phenomena in a variety of experimental paradigms. For many displays objects are perceived as displaced 'forward' in the direction of motion. However, in some cases involving the abrupt stopping or reversal of motion the forward displacements are not observed. We propose that the transient neural signals at the offset of a moving object play a crucial role in accurate localisation. In the present study, we eliminated the transient signals at motion offset by gradually reducing the luminance of the moving object. Our results show that the 'disappearance threshold' for a moving object is lower than the detection threshold for the same object without a motion history. In units of time this manipulation led to a forward displacement of the disappearance point by 175ms. We propose an explanation of our results in terms of two processes: Forward displacements are caused by internal models predicting positions of moving objects. The usually observed correct localisation of stopping positions, however, is based on transient inputs that retroactively attenuate errors that internal models might otherwise cause. Both processes are geared to reducing localisation errors for moving objects.
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