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Full Access The effect of eccentric gaze on tactile localization on areas of the body that cannot be seen

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The effect of eccentric gaze on tactile localization on areas of the body that cannot be seen

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Eccentric gaze systematically biases touch localization on the arm and waist. These perceptual errors suggest that touch location is at least partially coded in a visual reference frame. Here we investigated whether touches to non-visible parts of the body are also affected by gaze position. If so, can the direction of mislocalization tell us how they are laid out in the visual representation? To test this, an array of vibro-tactors was attached to either the lower back or the forehead. During trials, participants were guided to orient the position of their head (90° left, right or straight ahead for touches on the lower back) or head and eyes (combination of ±15° left, right or straight ahead head and eye positions for touches on the forehead) using LED fixation targets and a head mounted laser. Participants then re-oriented to straight ahead and reported perceived touch location on a visual scale using a mouse and computer screen. Similar to earlier experiments on the arm and waist, perceived touch location on the forehead and lower back was biased in the same direction as eccentric head and eye position. This is evidence that perceived touch location is at least partially coded in a visual reference frame even for parts of the body that are not typically seen.

Affiliations: 1: Centre for Vision Research, York University, CA

Eccentric gaze systematically biases touch localization on the arm and waist. These perceptual errors suggest that touch location is at least partially coded in a visual reference frame. Here we investigated whether touches to non-visible parts of the body are also affected by gaze position. If so, can the direction of mislocalization tell us how they are laid out in the visual representation? To test this, an array of vibro-tactors was attached to either the lower back or the forehead. During trials, participants were guided to orient the position of their head (90° left, right or straight ahead for touches on the lower back) or head and eyes (combination of ±15° left, right or straight ahead head and eye positions for touches on the forehead) using LED fixation targets and a head mounted laser. Participants then re-oriented to straight ahead and reported perceived touch location on a visual scale using a mouse and computer screen. Similar to earlier experiments on the arm and waist, perceived touch location on the forehead and lower back was biased in the same direction as eccentric head and eye position. This is evidence that perceived touch location is at least partially coded in a visual reference frame even for parts of the body that are not typically seen.

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/content/journals/10.1163/187847612x647351
2012-01-01
2016-12-10

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