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Dana A Roark, Alice J O'Toole, Hervé Abdi; Recognizing people from naturalistic video: The effects of facial motion and familiarity. Journal of Vision 2003;3(9):303. doi: 10.1167/3.9.303.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
To date, there is limited evidence to suggest that facial motion can improve recognition of unfamiliar faces above levels associated with static faces (Pike et al, 1997; Thornton & Kourtzi, 2002). However, facial motion cues are effective for recognizing familiar faces, especially when the pictorial information is degraded (e.g., Knight & Johnston, 1997; Lander & Bruce, 2000). Here we examined the combined effects of face familiarity and movement on person recognition when recognition was tested from whole-body gait videos.
Participants viewed either static face images or non-audible video clips of speaking faces, which were presented either once, twice, or four times during learning. At test, they viewed video clips taken in natural/variable illumination of people walking through a lobby. Participants were asked to indicate whether these videos showed people they had viewed previously.
We found that participants who learned moving faces recognized people from the gait videos more accurately than participants who learned static faces. Accuracy also increased with face familiarity. An interaction trend suggests that motion becomes more beneficial as familiarity increases. The findings indicate that the benefits of motion for recognizing relatively unfamiliar people may be confined to viewing conditions that challenge image-based generalizations. An additional intriguing finding of this study is that familiarization with the face alone is sufficient to improve recognition performance from the whole body gait videos.
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