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Thomas Schmidt, Sandra Miksch, Lisa Bulganin, Florian Jäger, Felix Lossin, Joline Jochum, Peter Kohl; Response priming driven by local contrast, not subjective brightness. Journal of Vision 2010;10(7):419. doi: https://doi.org/10.1167/10.7.419.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
We demonstrate qualitative dissociations of brightness processing in visuomotor priming and conscious vision. Speeded keypress responses to the brighter of two luminance targets were performed in the presence of preceding dark and bright primes (clearly visible and flanking the targets) whose apparent brightness was enhanced or attenuated by a visual illusion. Response times to the targets were greatly affected by consistent vs. inconsistent arrangements of the primes relative to the targets (response priming). Priming effects could systematically contradict subjective brightness matches, such that one prime could appear brighter than the other but prime as if it was darker. Systematic variation of the illusion showed that response priming effects only depended on local flanker-background contrast, not on the subjective brightness of the flankers. Our findings suggest that speeded motor responses, as opposed to conscious perceptual judgments, access an early phase of lightness processing prior to full lightness constancy.
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