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Maria Matziridi, Eli Brenner, Jeroen B. J. Smeets; Moving your head reduces perisaccadic compression. Journal of Vision 2016;16(13):5. doi: 10.1167/16.13.5.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
Flashes presented around the time of a saccade appear to be closer to the saccade endpoint than they really are. The resulting compression of perceived positions has been found to increase with the amplitude of the saccade. In most studies on perisaccadic compression the head is static, so the eye-in-head movement is equal to the change in gaze. What if moving the head causes part of the change in gaze? Does decreasing the eye-in-head rotation by moving the head decrease the compression of perceived positions? To find out, we asked participants to shift their gaze between two positions, either without moving their head or with the head contributing to the change in gaze. Around the time of the saccades we flashed bars that participants had to localize. When the head contributed to the change in gaze, the duration of the saccade was shorter and compression was reduced. We interpret this reduction in compression as being caused by a reduction in uncertainty about gaze position at the time of the flash. We conclude that moving one's head can reduce the systematic mislocalization of flashes presented around the time of saccades.
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