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Martin Szinte, Mark Wexler, Patrick Cavanagh; Temporal dynamics of remapping captured by peri-saccadic continuous motion. Journal of Vision 2012;12(7):12. doi: 10.1167/12.7.12.
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Different attention and saccade control areas contribute to space constancy by remapping target activity onto their expected post-saccadic locations. To visualize this dynamic remapping, we used a technique developed by Honda (2006) where a probe moved vertically while participants made a saccade across the motion path. Observers do not report any large excursions of the trace at the time of the saccade that would correspond to the classical peri-saccadic mislocalization effect. Instead, they reported that the motion trace appeared to be broken into two separate segments with a shift of approximately one-fifth of the saccade amplitude representing an overcompensation of the expected retinal displacement caused by the saccade. To measure the timing of this break in the trace, we introduced a second, physical shift that was the same size but opposite in direction to the saccade-induced shift. The trace appeared continuous most frequently when the physical shift was introduced at the midpoint of the saccade, suggesting that the compensation is in place when the saccade lands. Moreover, this simple linear shift made the combined traces appear continuous and linear, with no curvature. In contrast, Honda (2006) had reported that the pre- and post-saccadic portion of the trace appeared aligned and that there was often a small, visible excursion of the trace at the time of the saccade. To compare our results more directly, we increased the contrast of our moving probe in a third experiment. Now some observers reported seeing a deviation in the motion path but the misalignment remained present. We conclude that the large deviations at the time of saccade are generally masked for a continuously moving target but that there is nevertheless a residual misalignment between pre- and post-saccadic coordinates of approximately 20% of the saccade amplitude that normally goes unnoticed.
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