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Joseph Arizpe, Chris Baker; Characteristic visuomotor influences on eye-movement patterns to faces and other high level stimuli. Journal of Vision 2015;15(12):780. doi: https://doi.org/10.1167/15.12.780.
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Eye-movement patterns are often utilized in studies of visual perception as indices of the specific information extracted to efficiently process a given stimulus during a given task. Our prior work, however, revealed that not only the stimulus and task influence eye-movements, but that visuomotor (start position) factors also robustly and characteristically influence eye-movement patterns to faces (Arizpe, et al, 2012). Here we manipulated lateral starting side and distance from the midline of face and line-symmetrical control (butterfly) stimuli in order to further investigate the nature and generality of such visuomotor influences. First we found that increasing starting distance from midline (4, 8, 12, 16 degrees visual angle) strongly and proportionately increased the distance of the first ordinal fixation from midline. We did not find influences of starting distance on subsequent fixations, however, suggesting that eye-movement plans are not strongly affected by starting distance following an initial orienting fixation. Further, we replicated our prior effect of starting side (left, right) to induce a spatially contralateral tendency of fixations after the first ordinal fixation. However, we also established that these visuomotor influences did not depend upon the predictability of the location of the upcoming stimulus, and were present not only for face stimuli but also for our control stimulus category (butterflies). Finally, for faces, we found a relationship between left starting side (right sided fixation pattern tendency) and increased recognition performance, which likely reflects a cortical right hemisphere (left visual hemifield) advantage for face perception.
Meeting abstract presented at VSS 2015
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