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Eugenie Roudaia, Maya Labrèche, Delphine Bernardin, Aarlenne Khan, Jocelyn Faubert; Attention to objects at different depths is affected by their layout in depth and the plane of fixation, but is unaffected by aging.. Journal of Vision 2018;18(10):1022. doi: 10.1167/18.10.1022.
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Previously, we found that attending to different depth planes is more difficult compared to the same depth plane, only when the attended objects are further away from fixation (Roudaia et al., VSS, 2017). Here, we examined how the spatial layout of objects in depth and the plane of fixation affect dynamic attention capacity, both in younger and older adults. Stimuli comprised two virtual rectangular prisms arranged one above the other, each containing four tennis balls. While maintaining central fixation between the two zones, participants tracked two of the four balls in each zone as they moved for 6 s. The placement of the two zones in depth varied across four conditions: the two zones were either in the same depth plane (both near or far), or were at different depth planes (top near and bottom far; top far and bottom near). Depth was conveyed via stereo disparity and relative size cues. The fixation point location also varied, being at the same depth plane as the top zone, bottom zone, or both. When both zones were in the same depth plane, tracking accuracy was similar for the near and far conditions. When fixating near, performance declined when the top zone was far and even more so when the bottom zone was far. When fixating far, performance was unaffected when the bottom zone was near, whereas it declined when the top zone was near, especially in the older group. In sum, distributing attention in depth is easiest when the objects in the upper visual field are far and those in the lower visual field are near and proximal to fixation, consistent with ecological conditions. The pattern of results was similar across both age groups, indicating that aging does not impair the control of attention in depth.
Meeting abstract presented at VSS 2018
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