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Alessandro Moscatelli, Barbara La Scaleia, Myrka Zago, Francesco Lacquaniti; Motion direction, luminance contrast, and speed perception: An unexpected meeting. Journal of Vision 2019;19(6):16. doi: 10.1167/19.6.16.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
Motion direction and luminance contrast are two central features in the representation of visual motion in humans. In five psychophysical experiments, we showed that these two features affect the perceived speed of a visual stimulus. Our data showed a surprising interaction between contrast and direction. Participants perceived downward moving stimuli as faster than upward or rightward stimuli, but only at high contrast. Likewise, luminance contrast produced an underestimation of motion speed, but mostly when the stimuli moved downward. We explained these novel phenomena by means of a theoretical model, accounting for prior knowledge of motion dynamics.
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