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Tomoki Maezawa, Tomoyuki Tanda, Jun Kawahara; Preference for curved contours using various presentation times and response measures. Journal of Vision 2020;20(11):667. doi: https://doi.org/10.1167/jov.20.11.667.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
Objects with curved contours are generally preferred to those with angled contours. For example, Bar and Neta (2006) showed participant preferences (like or dislike) with regard to a briefly presented image of a curved or angled object. An important issue is that the strength of this preference varies due to possible confounding factors, such as presentation times and measures to obtain participant responses. It should also be noted that this preference for curvature is evidenced mainly in Western culture populations. In the present study, non-Western observers rated their preferences for real and meaningless objects with curved or angled contours. Stimuli were two types of images (real or meaningless objects) comprising various contours (curved or angled). As control stimuli, real objects comprising a roughly equal mixture of curved and angled features were also included in the set of stimuli. Participants randomly viewed one of the images for 90 ms and decided its preference by a like/dislike rating. The presentation time (90 ms or unlimited presentation time) and the response measure (a like/dislike rating or a 1-100 Likert scale rating) were systematically manipulated across experiments. When using like/dislike ratings, the curvature effects was obtained but only when real object images were presented for 90 ms. Participants did not prefer curved objects when the meaningless objects were presented. There was also an influence of the types of the images (real or meaningless) such that preference for the real images was higher than those for the meaningless objects. Interestingly, the present study demonstrated inverse trends indicating a preference against the curvature effect were observed when the participants used a rating scale as a response measure. The present results suggest that the curvature effects might be situation-dependent potentially due to cultural difference in judgments between Western and non-Western participants.
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