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Mengzhu Fu, Joshua Zosky, Michael Dodd; Examining the influence of different types of dynamic changes to targets and distractors in a visual search task. Journal of Vision 2017;17(10):940. doi: https://doi.org/10.1167/17.10.940.
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Previous studies have demonstrated that search performance for objects is greatly impaired when the targets and distractors are dynamic relative to static. Recently, Jardine and Moore (2016) examined this effect via dynamic motion wherein items in the display rotated in place continuously. It remains unclear, however, whether the observed impairment is specific to motion or whether other dynamic changes exert a similar effect. In the present study, we replicate the original Jardine and Moore finding and extend this examination to consider other dimensions, including increasing object complexity (schematic faces with continually changing expressions vs. similar object changes independent of a face context) and utilizing color-changed objects. Targets and distractors are presented at fixed locations and participants are required to search for an oddball target (e.g. a face with a smiling or frowning mouth relative to neutral expressions or a color patch that differs relative to a series of uniform distractors) during a critical frame, indicated by a border cue.. The results suggest that some, but not all, types of dynamic change impact performance. Specifically, oddball color targets and oddball orientation targets continue to pop out even when the items in the display are dynamic, but this is not the case for the more complex faces, which participants are poor at detecting. These findings demonstrate that the influence of dynamic context on search performance is not absolute, and is instead strongly influenced by the nature of the change to the display.
Meeting abstract presented at VSS 2017
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