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Dina Devyatko; Long-lasting connections: the relationship between motion-induced blindness and binocular rivalry reconsidered. Journal of Vision 2007;7(9):375. doi: 10.1167/7.9.375.
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Motion-induced blindness (MIB) refers to perceptual disappearance in natural (‘monocular’) vision when salient stimuli superimposed on a moving mask fluctuate in awareness (Bonneh et al., 2001). MIB history is connected with binocular rivalry (BR) (Grindley, Townsend, 1965, 1967), which we believe is not accidental. Since 2001, MIB and BR similarities/distinctions have been discussed once and again. Carter and Pettigrew (2003) compared temporal dynamic of perceptual oscillations in BR and MIB and proposed a common timing mechanism for both phenomena.
We investigated interactions between MIB and BR under two conditions: the experimental (MIB stimulation presented through anaglyph glasses, with a mask viewed by one eye and target dots by the other eye) and the baseline (a ‘regular’ MIB demonstration). 10 subjects were asked to report immediately on disappearances/reappearances of any display elements.
If a common MIB/BR oscillator exists, we expected no significant differences in general characteristics and the amount of perceptual events in the ‘regular’ MIB and MIB under BR-conditions. If there are two relatively independent mechanisms, differences should be observed. Also, when a MIB demonstration is viewed under BR-conditions, mask disappearances could be due to the BR only. Simultaneous disappearances/reappearances of three dots could be caused by either BR or MIB. All other types of events would be MIB markers.
We compared the amount of different perceptual events under both conditions. As expected, mask disappeared under BR-conditions only. There were significantly more simultaneous disappearances/reappearances of three dots, disappearances of two dots and then one dot, and disappearances of one dot followed by two dots under BR-conditions. Under baseline condition, one dot disappeared significantly more often, as well as two dots simultaneously. Besides, we obtained evidence of ‘adaptation’ to regular MIB with no ‘adaptation’ under BR-conditions which can be considered as an indirect evidence of different nature of MIB and BR.
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