The Influence of Manual Control of the Visual Targets on the Stream/Bounce Illusion

Bernoff, Micah (2010). The Influence of Manual Control of the Visual Targets on the Stream/Bounce Illusion Honours Thesis, School of Psychology, The University of Queensland.

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Author Bernoff, Micah
Thesis Title The Influence of Manual Control of the Visual Targets on the Stream/Bounce Illusion
School, Centre or Institute School of Psychology
Institution The University of Queensland
Publication date 2010
Thesis type Honours Thesis
Total pages 57
Abstract/Summary When two identical stimuli move towards each other on the same trajectory so that they coincide at the centre of the display and then continue to move past each other, the stimuli can appear to stream past one another or to bounce off one another. Despite both perceptions being equally likely, streaming is the dominant perception in visual-only displays. This perceptual bias reverses to mostly bouncing when additional sensory inputs, such as an auditory tone, are presented at the point of coincidence. This study investigated what effect an observer‟s manual control of the visual targets has on the stream/bounce illusion. The study (n=18) consisted of three tactile control conditions: automatic, in which observers had no control over the motion of the targets; semi-manual, in which observers initiated target motion with the movement of a computer mouse; and manual, in which observers fully controlled the motion of the targets with the motion of the mouse. These conditions were combined with two auditory conditions (tone or no tone at the point of coincidence). The stream/bounce effect manifested in all three tactile control conditions, though it was reduced in magnitude in the semi-manual and manual conditions compared to the automatic condition. A follow-up experiment (n=10) to identify if the participants were aware of the different level of control between the semi-manual and manual conditions revealed a difference in awareness between these conditions. These results suggest that, while tactile inputs promote a streaming perception, auditory inputs are given priority over tactile inputs for the formation of a visual perception within the stream/bounce effect.

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Created: Wed, 06 Apr 2011, 13:00:53 EST by Lucy O'Brien on behalf of School of Psychology