Scale changes provide an alternative cue for the discrimination of heading, but not object motion
Vaina, Lucia Maria
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CitationFinnegan J Calabro, Lucia Maria Vaina. 2016. "Scale Changes Provide an Alternative Cue For the Discrimination of Heading, But Not Object Motion." Med Sci Monit, Volume 22, pp. 1782 - 1791.
BACKGROUND Understanding the dynamics of our surrounding environments is a task usually attributed to the detection of motion based on changes in luminance across space. Yet a number of other cues, both dynamic and static, have been shown to provide useful information about how we are moving and how objects around us move. One such cue, based on changes in spatial frequency, or scale, over time has been shown to be useful in conveying motion in depth even in the absence of a coherent, motion-defined flow field (optic flow). MATERIAL AND METHODS 16 right handed healthy observers (ages 18-28) participated in the behavioral experiments described in this study. Using analytical behavioral methods we investigate the functional specificity of this cue by measuring the ability of observers to perform tasks of heading (direction of self-motion) and 3D trajectory discrimination on the basis of scale changes and optic flow. RESULTS Statistical analyses of performance on the test-experiments in comparison to the control experiments suggests that while scale changes may be involved in the detection of heading, they are not correctly integrated with translational motion and, thus, do not provide a correct discrimination of 3D object trajectories. CONCLUSIONS These results have the important implication for the type of visual guided navigation that can be done by an observer blind to optic flow. Scale change is an important alternative cue for self-motion.