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Jochem W. Rieger, Marcus Grüschow, Hans-Jochen Heinze, Robert Fendrich; The appearance of figures seen through a narrow aperture under free viewing conditions: Effects of spontaneous eye motions. Journal of Vision 2007;7(6):10. doi: 10.1167/7.6.10.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
When moving figures are occluded and revealed piecemeal as they move across a narrow slit, observers may perceive them as integrated but distorted. They may also perceive much more of the figure as simultaneously visible than is actually presented at any moment. We obtained quantitative measures of both the perceived distortion and perceived simultaneity under free viewing conditions and related these phenomena to spontaneous pursuit eye movements, the retinal painting produced by this pursuit, and the occurrence of saccades. We found both shape compressions and expansions, depending on figure velocity. We also obtained quantitative evidence that observers perceived slices of the moving figures far wider than the slit through which they were presented. Eye-motion records and retinal stabilization revealed that spontaneous pursuit and the spatially extended images that could have been painted out by this pursuit played no role in the perceived global shape distortions and made only a small contribution to the perceived simultaneity. Therefore, under free viewing conditions, both the distortions and simultaneity of these “anorthoscopic” figure percepts must be the consequence of a postretinal process that integrates the figures over space and time independent of eye motions.
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