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Marc S. Tibber, Simon Grant, Michael J. Morgan; Oculomotor responses and visuospatial perceptual judgments compete for common limited resources. Journal of Vision 2009;9(12):21. doi: 10.1167/9.12.21.
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While there is evidence for multiple spatial and attentional maps in the brain it is not clear to what extent visuoperceptual and oculomotor tasks rely on common neural representations and attentional mechanisms. Using a dual-task interference paradigm we tested the hypothesis that eye movements and perceptual judgments made to simultaneously presented visuospatial information compete for shared limited resources. Observers undertook judgments of stimulus collinearity (perceptual extrapolation) using a pointer and Gabor patch and/or performed saccades to a peripheral dot target while their eye movements were recorded. In addition, observers performed a non-spatial control task (contrast discrimination), matched for task difficulty and stimulus structure, which on the basis of previous studies was expected to represent a lesser load on putative shared resources. Greater mutual interference was indeed found between the saccade and extrapolation task pair than between the saccade and contrast discrimination task pair. These data are consistent with visuoperceptual and oculomotor responses competing for common limited resources as well as spatial tasks incurring a relatively high attentional cost.
*These two conditions are in fact identical.
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