Perceptual Alternation Induced by Visual Transients

Document Type: 
Article
Article Type: 
Experimental
Disciplines: 
Psychology
Topics: 
Attention
Deposited by: 
Dr. Ryota Kanai
Date of Issue: 
2005
Authors: 
Ryota Kanai, Farshad Moradi, Shinsuke Shimojo, Frans A. J. Verstraten
Journal/Publication Title: 
Perception
Volume: 
34
Page Range: 
803-822
Abstract: 
When our visual system is confronted with ambiguous stimuli, the perceptualinterpretation spontaneously alternates between the competing incompatible interpretations. The timing of such perceptual alternations is highly stochastic and the underlying neural mechanisms are poorly understood. Here, we show that perceptual alternations can be triggered by a transient stimulus presented nearby. The induction was tested for four types of bistable stimuli: structure-from-motion, binocular rivalry, Necker cube, and ambiguous apparent motion. While underlying mechanisms may vary among them, a transient flash induced time-locked perceptual alternations in all cases. The effect showed a dependency on the adaptation to the dominant percept prior to the presentation of a flash. These perceptual alternations show many similarities to perceptual disappearances induced by transient stimuli (Kanai & Kamitani, 2003, Moradi & Shimojo, 2004). Mechanisms linking these two transient induced phenomena are discussed.
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