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Artem V Belopolsky, Jan Theeuwes, Arthur F Kramer; Prioritization by visual transients in search: Evidence against the visual marking account of the preview benefit. Journal of Vision 2003;3(9):574. doi: 10.1167/3.9.574.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
There is an ongoing debate as to whether prioritizing new elements over old elements in visual search (the so-called preview benefit) is the result of top-down inhibition of old objects (i.e., visual marking; Watson & Humphreys, 1997, 1998, 2000; Kunar, Humphreys and Smith, in press) or attentional capture by new elements (Donk & Theeuwes, 2001). The present experiment shows a preview benefit when there are no old elements and there is nothing to inhibit. Participants viewed multi-element displays while a subset of elements was briefly flashed. Participants prioritized flashed elements over non-flashed elements, showing results similar to visual marking. Our results provide evidence that the preview benefit in visual search is the result of attentional capture by luminance transients.
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