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Hinze Hogendoorn, Thomas A. Carlson, Frans A. J. Verstraten; The time course of attentive tracking. Journal of Vision 2007;7(14):2. doi: 10.1167/7.14.2.
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The temporal characteristics of attentive tracking were studied in three experiments. We measured attentional dwell time and shift time during attentive tracking and showed that when an external cue is available, attention can repeatedly shift between items remarkably quickly. However, because attention is synchronized to this external cue, the time cost of shifting attention is inversely related to tracking rate. Furthermore, we show that during tracking, attentional shifts are likely synchronized to cue onsets rather than offsets. Results are discussed in the framework of a smoothly moving attentional spotlight.
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