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Sample records for abstract visual stimuli

  1. The Concreteness Effect and the Bilingual Lexicon: The Impact of Visual Stimuli Attachment on Meaning Recall of Abstract L2 Words

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Farley, Andrew P.; Ramonda, Kris; Liu, Xun

    2012-01-01

    According to the Dual-Coding Theory (Paivio & Desrochers, 1980), words that are associated with rich visual imagery are more easily learned than abstract words due to what is termed the concreteness effect (Altarriba & Bauer, 2004; de Groot, 1992, de Groot et al., 1994; ter Doest & Semin, 2005). The present study examined the effects of attaching…

  2. Visual stimuli: past and present

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Westheimer, Gerald

    2013-03-01

    The fundamental properties of light and the principles of the structure and function of the visual system were discovered at a time when the only light sources were the sun and the flame of a candle. Contributions by Newton, Huygens, Thomas Young and Purkinje, Helmholtz's ophthalmoscope - all preceded the first incandescent filament. Light bulbs, Xenon arcs, lasers, light-emitting diodes (LEDs), computer monitors then sequentially enlarged the arsenal, and so did the steps from Nicol prism to Polaroid in polarizing light, and from glass and interference filters to laser light in generating monochromatic light. Technological advances have a deep impact on the research topics at any one time, expanding their scope. In particular, utilization of computers now allows the generation and manipulation of targets permitting questions to be approached that could not have been envisaged at the dawn of the technological era of vision research. Just beyond the immediate grasp of even the most thoughtful vision scientist, however, is the concern that stimulus sets originating in mathematicians' and physicists' toolboxes fail to capture some essential ingredients indigenous to human vision. The quest to study vision with stimuli in its own terms continues.

  3. Visual stimuli recruit intrinsically generated cortical ensembles.

    PubMed

    Miller, Jae-eun Kang; Ayzenshtat, Inbal; Carrillo-Reid, Luis; Yuste, Rafael

    2014-09-23

    The cortical microcircuit is built with recurrent excitatory connections, and it has long been suggested that the purpose of this design is to enable intrinsically driven reverberating activity. To understand the dynamics of neocortical intrinsic activity better, we performed two-photon calcium imaging of populations of neurons from the primary visual cortex of awake mice during visual stimulation and spontaneous activity. In both conditions, cortical activity is dominated by coactive groups of neurons, forming ensembles whose activation cannot be explained by the independent firing properties of their contributing neurons, considered in isolation. Moreover, individual neurons flexibly join multiple ensembles, vastly expanding the encoding potential of the circuit. Intriguingly, the same coactive ensembles can repeat spontaneously and in response to visual stimuli, indicating that stimulus-evoked responses arise from activating these intrinsic building blocks. Although the spatial properties of stimulus-driven and spontaneous ensembles are similar, spontaneous ensembles are active at random intervals, whereas visually evoked ensembles are time-locked to stimuli. We conclude that neuronal ensembles, built by the coactivation of flexible groups of neurons, are emergent functional units of cortical activity and propose that visual stimuli recruit intrinsically generated ensembles to represent visual attributes. PMID:25201983

  4. Computer programming for generating visual stimuli.

    PubMed

    Bukhari, Farhan; Kurylo, Daniel D

    2008-02-01

    Critical to vision research is the generation of visual displays with precise control over stimulus metrics. Generating stimuli often requires adapting commercial software or developing specialized software for specific research applications. In order to facilitate this process, we give here an overview that allows nonexpert users to generate and customize stimuli for vision research. We first give a review of relevant hardware and software considerations, to allow the selection of display hardware, operating system, programming language, and graphics packages most appropriate for specific research applications. We then describe the framework of a generic computer program that can be adapted for use with a broad range of experimental applications. Stimuli are generated in the context of trial events, allowing the display of text messages, the monitoring of subject responses and reaction times, and the inclusion of contingency algorithms. This approach allows direct control and management of computer-generated visual stimuli while utilizing the full capabilities of modern hardware and software systems. The flowchart and source code for the stimulus-generating program may be downloaded from www.psychonomic.org/archive.

  5. Stereotypic vision: how stereotypes disambiguate visual stimuli.

    PubMed

    Correll, Joshua; Wittenbrink, Bernd; Crawford, Matthew T; Sadler, Melody S

    2015-02-01

    Three studies examined how participants use race to disambiguate visual stimuli. Participants performed a first-person-shooter task in which Black and White targets appeared holding either a gun or an innocuous object (e.g., a wallet). In Study 1, diffusion analysis (Ratcliff, 1978) showed that participants rapidly acquired information about a gun when it appeared in the hands of a Black target, and about an innocuous object in the hands of a White target. For counterstereotypic pairings (armed Whites, unarmed Blacks), participants acquired information more slowly. In Study 2, eye tracking showed that participants relied on more ambiguous information (measured by visual angle from fovea) when responding to stereotypic targets; for counterstereotypic targets, they achieved greater clarity before responding. In Study 3, participants were briefly exposed to targets (limiting access to visual information) but had unlimited time to respond. In spite of their slow, deliberative responses, they showed racial bias. This pattern is inconsistent with control failure and suggests that stereotypes influenced identification of the object. All 3 studies show that race affects visual processing by supplementing objective information. PMID:25603373

  6. Stereotypic vision: how stereotypes disambiguate visual stimuli.

    PubMed

    Correll, Joshua; Wittenbrink, Bernd; Crawford, Matthew T; Sadler, Melody S

    2015-02-01

    Three studies examined how participants use race to disambiguate visual stimuli. Participants performed a first-person-shooter task in which Black and White targets appeared holding either a gun or an innocuous object (e.g., a wallet). In Study 1, diffusion analysis (Ratcliff, 1978) showed that participants rapidly acquired information about a gun when it appeared in the hands of a Black target, and about an innocuous object in the hands of a White target. For counterstereotypic pairings (armed Whites, unarmed Blacks), participants acquired information more slowly. In Study 2, eye tracking showed that participants relied on more ambiguous information (measured by visual angle from fovea) when responding to stereotypic targets; for counterstereotypic targets, they achieved greater clarity before responding. In Study 3, participants were briefly exposed to targets (limiting access to visual information) but had unlimited time to respond. In spite of their slow, deliberative responses, they showed racial bias. This pattern is inconsistent with control failure and suggests that stereotypes influenced identification of the object. All 3 studies show that race affects visual processing by supplementing objective information.

  7. Anchoring in Numeric Judgments of Visual Stimuli

    PubMed Central

    Langeborg, Linda; Eriksson, Mårten

    2016-01-01

    This article investigates effects of anchoring in age estimation and estimation of quantities, two tasks which to different extents are based on visual stimuli. The results are compared to anchoring in answers to classic general knowledge questions that rely on semantic knowledge. Cognitive load was manipulated to explore possible differences between domains. Effects of source credibility, manipulated by differing instructions regarding the selection of anchor values (no information regarding anchor selection, information that the anchors are randomly generated or information that the anchors are answers from an expert) on anchoring were also investigated. Effects of anchoring were large for all types of judgments but were not affected by cognitive load or by source credibility in either one of the researched domains. A main effect of cognitive load on quantity estimations and main effects of source credibility in the two visually based domains indicate that the manipulations were efficient. Implications for theoretical explanations of anchoring are discussed. In particular, because anchoring did not interact with cognitive load, the results imply that the process behind anchoring in visual tasks is predominantly automatic and unconscious. PMID:26941684

  8. Anchoring in Numeric Judgments of Visual Stimuli.

    PubMed

    Langeborg, Linda; Eriksson, Mårten

    2016-01-01

    This article investigates effects of anchoring in age estimation and estimation of quantities, two tasks which to different extents are based on visual stimuli. The results are compared to anchoring in answers to classic general knowledge questions that rely on semantic knowledge. Cognitive load was manipulated to explore possible differences between domains. Effects of source credibility, manipulated by differing instructions regarding the selection of anchor values (no information regarding anchor selection, information that the anchors are randomly generated or information that the anchors are answers from an expert) on anchoring were also investigated. Effects of anchoring were large for all types of judgments but were not affected by cognitive load or by source credibility in either one of the researched domains. A main effect of cognitive load on quantity estimations and main effects of source credibility in the two visually based domains indicate that the manipulations were efficient. Implications for theoretical explanations of anchoring are discussed. In particular, because anchoring did not interact with cognitive load, the results imply that the process behind anchoring in visual tasks is predominantly automatic and unconscious. PMID:26941684

  9. Anchoring in Numeric Judgments of Visual Stimuli.

    PubMed

    Langeborg, Linda; Eriksson, Mårten

    2016-01-01

    This article investigates effects of anchoring in age estimation and estimation of quantities, two tasks which to different extents are based on visual stimuli. The results are compared to anchoring in answers to classic general knowledge questions that rely on semantic knowledge. Cognitive load was manipulated to explore possible differences between domains. Effects of source credibility, manipulated by differing instructions regarding the selection of anchor values (no information regarding anchor selection, information that the anchors are randomly generated or information that the anchors are answers from an expert) on anchoring were also investigated. Effects of anchoring were large for all types of judgments but were not affected by cognitive load or by source credibility in either one of the researched domains. A main effect of cognitive load on quantity estimations and main effects of source credibility in the two visually based domains indicate that the manipulations were efficient. Implications for theoretical explanations of anchoring are discussed. In particular, because anchoring did not interact with cognitive load, the results imply that the process behind anchoring in visual tasks is predominantly automatic and unconscious.

  10. A Method for Automatically Abstracting Visual Documents.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rorvig, Mark E.

    1993-01-01

    Describes a method for automatically selecting key frames that can be used to represent the total image sequence of visual documents. An abstracting algorithm developed at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration is explained, and extensive examples of abstracted motion sequences are presented. (eight references) (LRW)

  11. A method for automatically abstracting visual documents

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rorvig, Mark E.

    1993-01-01

    Visual documents - motion sequences on film, video-tape, and digital recordings - constitute a major source of information for the Space Agency, as well as all other government and private sector entities. This article describes a method for automatically selecting key frames from visual documents. These frames may in turn be used to represent the total image sequence of visual documents in visual libraries, hypermedia systems, and training guides. The performance of the abstracting algorithm reduces 51 minutes of video sequences to 134 frames; a reduction of information in the range of 700:1.

  12. Invisible visual stimuli elicit increases in alpha-band power.

    PubMed

    Bareither, Isabelle; Chaumon, Maximilien; Bernasconi, Fosco; Villringer, Arno; Busch, Niko A

    2014-09-01

    The cerebral cortex responds to stimuli of a wide range of intensities. Previous studies have demonstrated that undetectably weak somatosensory stimuli cause a functional deactivation or inhibition in somatosensory cortex. In the present study, we tested whether invisible visual stimuli lead to similar responses, indicated by an increase in EEG alpha-band power-an index of cortical excitability. We presented subliminal and supraliminal visual stimuli after estimating each participant's detection threshold. Stimuli consisted of peripherally presented small circular patches that differed in their contrast to a background consisting of a random white noise pattern. We demonstrate that subliminal and supraliminal stimuli each elicit specific neuronal response patterns. Supraliminal stimuli evoked an early, strongly phase-locked lower-frequency response representing the evoked potential and induced a decrease in alpha-band power from 400 ms on. By contrast, subliminal visual stimuli induced an increase of non-phase-locked power around 300 ms that was maximal within the alpha-band. This response might be due to an inhibitory mechanism, which reduces spurious visual activation that is unlikely to result from external stimuli. PMID:24872526

  13. Invisible visual stimuli elicit increases in alpha-band power.

    PubMed

    Bareither, Isabelle; Chaumon, Maximilien; Bernasconi, Fosco; Villringer, Arno; Busch, Niko A

    2014-09-01

    The cerebral cortex responds to stimuli of a wide range of intensities. Previous studies have demonstrated that undetectably weak somatosensory stimuli cause a functional deactivation or inhibition in somatosensory cortex. In the present study, we tested whether invisible visual stimuli lead to similar responses, indicated by an increase in EEG alpha-band power-an index of cortical excitability. We presented subliminal and supraliminal visual stimuli after estimating each participant's detection threshold. Stimuli consisted of peripherally presented small circular patches that differed in their contrast to a background consisting of a random white noise pattern. We demonstrate that subliminal and supraliminal stimuli each elicit specific neuronal response patterns. Supraliminal stimuli evoked an early, strongly phase-locked lower-frequency response representing the evoked potential and induced a decrease in alpha-band power from 400 ms on. By contrast, subliminal visual stimuli induced an increase of non-phase-locked power around 300 ms that was maximal within the alpha-band. This response might be due to an inhibitory mechanism, which reduces spurious visual activation that is unlikely to result from external stimuli.

  14. Slowed response to peripheral visual stimuli during strenuous exercise.

    PubMed

    Ando, Soichi; Komiyama, Takaaki; Kokubu, Masahiro; Sudo, Mizuki; Kiyonaga, Akira; Tanaka, Hiroaki; Higaki, Yasuki

    2016-07-01

    Recently, we proposed that strenuous exercise impairs peripheral visual perception because visual responses to peripheral visual stimuli were slowed during strenuous exercise. However, this proposal was challenged because strenuous exercise is also likely to affect the brain network underlying motor responses. The purpose of the current study was to resolve this issue. Fourteen participants performed a visual reaction-time (RT) task at rest and while exercising at 50% (moderate) and 75% (strenuous) peak oxygen uptake. Visual stimuli were randomly presented at different distances from fixation in two task conditions: the Central condition (2° or 5° from fixation) and the Peripheral condition (30° or 50° from fixation). We defined premotor time as the time between stimulus onset and the motor response, as determined using electromyographic recordings. In the Central condition, premotor time did not change during moderate (167±19ms) and strenuous (168±24ms) exercise from that at rest (164±17ms). In the Peripheral condition, premotor time significantly increased during moderate (181±18ms, P<0.05) and strenuous exercise (189±23ms, P<0.001) from that at rest (173±17ms). These results suggest that increases in Premotor Time to the peripheral visual stimuli did not result from an impaired motor-response network, but rather from impaired peripheral visual perception. We conclude that slowed response to peripheral visual stimuli during strenuous exercise primarily results from impaired visual perception of the periphery. PMID:27080081

  15. Trained and Derived Relations with Pictures versus Abstract Stimuli as Nodes

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Arntzen, Erik; Lian, Torunn

    2010-01-01

    Earlier studies have shown divergent results concerning the use of familiar picture stimuli in demonstration of equivalence. In the current experiment, we trained 16 children to form three 3-member classes in a many-to-one training structure. Half of the participants were exposed first to a condition with all abstract stimuli and then to a…

  16. Multisensory numerosity judgments for visual and tactile stimuli.

    PubMed

    Gallace, Alberto; Tan, Hong Z; Spence, Charles

    2007-05-01

    To date, numerosity judgments have been studied only under conditions of unimodal stimulus presentation. It is therefore unclear whether the same limitations on correctly reporting the number of unimodal visual or tactile stimuli presented in a display might be expected under conditions in which participants have to count stimuli presented simultaneously in two or more different sensory modalities. In Experiment 1, we investigated numerosity judgments using both unimodal and bimodal displays consisting of one to six vibrotactile stimuli (presented over the body surface) and one to six visual stimuli (seen on the body via mirror reflection). Participants had to count the number of stimuli regardless of their modality of presentation. Bimodal numerosity judgments were significantly less accurate than predicted on the basis of an independent modality-specific resources account, thus showing that numerosity judgments might rely on a unitary amodal system instead. The results of a second experiment demonstrated that divided attention costs could not account for the poor performance in the bimodal conditions of Experiment 1. We discuss these results in relation to current theories of cross-modal integration and to the cognitive resources and/or common higher order spatial representations possibly accessed by both visual and tactile stimuli. PMID:17727102

  17. Endogenous sequential cortical activity evoked by visual stimuli.

    PubMed

    Carrillo-Reid, Luis; Miller, Jae-Eun Kang; Hamm, Jordan P; Jackson, Jesse; Yuste, Rafael

    2015-06-10

    Although the functional properties of individual neurons in primary visual cortex have been studied intensely, little is known about how neuronal groups could encode changing visual stimuli using temporal activity patterns. To explore this, we used in vivo two-photon calcium imaging to record the activity of neuronal populations in primary visual cortex of awake mice in the presence and absence of visual stimulation. Multidimensional analysis of the network activity allowed us to identify neuronal ensembles defined as groups of cells firing in synchrony. These synchronous groups of neurons were themselves activated in sequential temporal patterns, which repeated at much higher proportions than chance and were triggered by specific visual stimuli such as natural visual scenes. Interestingly, sequential patterns were also present in recordings of spontaneous activity without any sensory stimulation and were accompanied by precise firing sequences at the single-cell level. Moreover, intrinsic dynamics could be used to predict the occurrence of future neuronal ensembles. Our data demonstrate that visual stimuli recruit similar sequential patterns to the ones observed spontaneously, consistent with the hypothesis that already existing Hebbian cell assemblies firing in predefined temporal sequences could be the microcircuit substrate that encodes visual percepts changing in time. PMID:26063915

  18. Endogenous Sequential Cortical Activity Evoked by Visual Stimuli

    PubMed Central

    Miller, Jae-eun Kang; Hamm, Jordan P.; Jackson, Jesse; Yuste, Rafael

    2015-01-01

    Although the functional properties of individual neurons in primary visual cortex have been studied intensely, little is known about how neuronal groups could encode changing visual stimuli using temporal activity patterns. To explore this, we used in vivo two-photon calcium imaging to record the activity of neuronal populations in primary visual cortex of awake mice in the presence and absence of visual stimulation. Multidimensional analysis of the network activity allowed us to identify neuronal ensembles defined as groups of cells firing in synchrony. These synchronous groups of neurons were themselves activated in sequential temporal patterns, which repeated at much higher proportions than chance and were triggered by specific visual stimuli such as natural visual scenes. Interestingly, sequential patterns were also present in recordings of spontaneous activity without any sensory stimulation and were accompanied by precise firing sequences at the single-cell level. Moreover, intrinsic dynamics could be used to predict the occurrence of future neuronal ensembles. Our data demonstrate that visual stimuli recruit similar sequential patterns to the ones observed spontaneously, consistent with the hypothesis that already existing Hebbian cell assemblies firing in predefined temporal sequences could be the microcircuit substrate that encodes visual percepts changing in time. PMID:26063915

  19. Submillisecond unmasked subliminal visual stimuli evoke electrical brain responses.

    PubMed

    Sperdin, Holger F; Spierer, Lucas; Becker, Robert; Michel, Christoph M; Landis, Theodor

    2015-04-01

    Subliminal perception is strongly associated to the processing of meaningful or emotional information and has mostly been studied using visual masking. In this study, we used high density 256-channel EEG coupled with an liquid crystal display (LCD) tachistoscope to characterize the spatio-temporal dynamics of the brain response to visual checkerboard stimuli (Experiment 1) or blank stimuli (Experiment 2) presented without a mask for 1 ms (visible), 500 µs (partially visible), and 250 µs (subliminal) by applying time-wise, assumption-free nonparametric randomization statistics on the strength and on the topography of high-density scalp-recorded electric field. Stimulus visibility was assessed in a third separate behavioral experiment. Results revealed that unmasked checkerboards presented subliminally for 250 µs evoked weak but detectable visual evoked potential (VEP) responses. When the checkerboards were replaced by blank stimuli, there was no evidence for the presence of an evoked response anymore. Furthermore, the checkerboard VEPs were modulated topographically between 243 and 296 ms post-stimulus onset as a function of stimulus duration, indicative of the engagement of distinct configuration of active brain networks. A distributed electrical source analysis localized this modulation within the right superior parietal lobule near the precuneus. These results show the presence of a brain response to submillisecond unmasked subliminal visual stimuli independently of their emotional saliency or meaningfulness and opens an avenue for new investigations of subliminal stimulation without using visual masking. PMID:25487054

  20. Differences in Sensorimotor Processing of Visual and Proprioceptive Stimuli

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kamen, Gary and Morris, Harold H.

    1988-01-01

    A paradox in studying sensory perception is that people often attend to a stimulus which provides the least optimal information. Usually, this is a visual stimulus. The study sought to lessen this reliance on vision by training subjects to respond to proprioceptive stimuli. Results are discussed. (Author/JL)

  1. Interactions of auditory and visual stimuli in space and time.

    PubMed

    Recanzone, Gregg H

    2009-12-01

    The nervous system has evolved to transduce different types of environmental energy independently, for example light energy is transduced by the retina whereas sound energy is transduced by the cochlea. However, the neural processing of this energy is necessarily combined, resulting in a unified percept of a real-world object or event. These percepts can be modified in the laboratory, resulting in illusions that can be used to probe how multisensory integration occurs. This paper reviews studies that have utilized such illusory percepts in order to better understand the integration of auditory and visual signals in primates. Results from human psychophysical experiments where visual stimuli alter the perception of acoustic space (the ventriloquism effect) are discussed, as are experiments probing the underlying cortical mechanisms of this integration. Similar psychophysical experiments where auditory stimuli alter the perception of visual temporal processing are also described. PMID:19393306

  2. Positive mood broadens visual attention to positive stimuli

    PubMed Central

    Wadlinger, Heather A.; Isaacowitz, Derek M.

    2010-01-01

    In an attempt to investigate the impact of positive emotions on visual attention within the context of Fredrickson's (1998) broaden-and-build model, eye tracking was used in two studies to measure visual attentional preferences of college students (n=58, n=26) to emotional pictures. Half of each sample experienced induced positive mood immediately before viewing slides of three similarly-valenced images, in varying central-peripheral arrays. Attentional breadth was determined by measuring the percentage viewing time to peripheral images as well as by the number of visual saccades participants made per slide. Consistent with Fredrickson's theory, the first study showed that individuals induced into positive mood fixated more on peripheral stimuli than did control participants; however, this only held true for highly-valenced positive stimuli. Participants under induced positive mood also made more frequent saccades for slides of neutral and positive valence. A second study showed that these effects were not simply due to differences in emotional arousal between stimuli. Selective attentional broadening to positive stimuli may act both to facilitate later building of resources as well as to maintain current positive affective states. PMID:20431711

  3. Cognitive robotic system for learning of complex visual stimuli

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Potapov, A. S.; Rozhkov, A. S.

    2013-05-01

    The problem of learning of complex visual stimuli in cognitive robotics is considered. These stimuli should be selected on the base of rules supporting arbitrary comparisons of stimulus features with features of other salient objects (context). New perceptual knowledge representation based on the predicate logic is implemented to express such rules. Computable predicates are provided by low-level vision system. The rules are constructed using genetic algorithms on the base of a set of examples obtained by a robot during consequent trials. Dependence between the number of necessary trials and rule complexity is studied.

  4. Comparisons of memory for nonverbal auditory and visual sequential stimuli.

    PubMed

    McFarland, D J; Cacace, A T

    1995-01-01

    Properties of auditory and visual sensory memory were compared by examining subjects' recognition performance of randomly generated binary auditory sequential frequency patterns and binary visual sequential color patterns within a forced-choice paradigm. Experiment 1 demonstrated serial-position effects in auditory and visual modalities consisting of both primacy and recency effects. Experiment 2 found that retention of auditory and visual information was remarkably similar when assessed across a 10s interval. Experiments 3 and 4, taken together, showed that the recency effect in sensory memory is affected more by the type of response required (recognition vs. reproduction) than by the sensory modality employed. These studies suggest that auditory and visual sensory memory stores for nonverbal stimuli share similar properties with respect to serial-position effects and persistence over time.

  5. Dynamic Stimuli And Active Processing In Human Visual Perception

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haber, Ralph N.

    1990-03-01

    Theories of visual perception traditionally have considered a static retinal image to be the starting point for processing; and has considered processing both to be passive and a literal translation of that frozen, two dimensional, pictorial image. This paper considers five problem areas in the analysis of human visually guided locomotion, in which the traditional approach is contrasted to newer ones that utilize dynamic definitions of stimulation, and an active perceiver: (1) differentiation between object motion and self motion, and among the various kinds of self motion (e.g., eyes only, head only, whole body, and their combinations); (2) the sources and contents of visual information that guide movement; (3) the acquisition and performance of perceptual motor skills; (4) the nature of spatial representations, percepts, and the perceived layout of space; and (5) and why the retinal image is a poor starting point for perceptual processing. These newer approaches argue that stimuli must be considered as dynamic: humans process the systematic changes in patterned light when objects move and when they themselves move. Furthermore, the processing of visual stimuli must be active and interactive, so that perceivers can construct panoramic and stable percepts from an interaction of stimulus information and expectancies of what is contained in the visual environment. These developments all suggest a very different approach to the computational analyses of object location and identification, and of the visual guidance of locomotion.

  6. Impact prediction by looming visual stimuli enhances tactile detection.

    PubMed

    Cléry, Justine; Guipponi, Olivier; Odouard, Soline; Wardak, Claire; Ben Hamed, Suliann

    2015-03-11

    From an ecological point of view, approaching objects are potentially more harmful than receding objects. A predator, a dominant conspecific, or a mere branch coming up at high speed can all be dangerous if one does not detect them and produce the appropriate escape behavior fast enough. And indeed, looming stimuli trigger stereotyped defensive responses in both monkeys and human infants. However, while the heteromodal somatosensory consequences of visual looming stimuli can be fully predicted by their spatiotemporal dynamics, few studies if any have explored whether visual stimuli looming toward the face predictively enhance heteromodal tactile sensitivity around the expected time of impact and at its expected location on the body. In the present study, we report that, in addition to triggering a defensive motor repertoire, looming stimuli toward the face provide the nervous system with predictive cues that enhance tactile sensitivity on the face. Specifically, we describe an enhancement of tactile processes at the expected time and location of impact of the stimulus on the face. We additionally show that a looming stimulus that brushes past the face also enhances tactile sensitivity on the nearby cheek, suggesting that the space close to the face is incorporated into the subjects' body schema. We propose that this cross-modal predictive facilitation involves multisensory convergence areas subserving the representation of a peripersonal space and a safety boundary of self.

  7. Brain response to visual sexual stimuli in homosexual pedophiles

    PubMed Central

    Schiffer, Boris; Krueger, Tillmann; Paul, Thomas; de Greiff, Armin; Forsting, Michael; Leygraf, Norbert; Schedlowski, Manfred; Gizewski, Elke

    2008-01-01

    Objective The neurobiological mechanisms of deviant sexual preferences such as pedophilia are largely unknown. The objective of this study was to analyze whether brain activation patterns of homosexual pedophiles differed from those of a nonpedophile homosexual control group during visual sexual stimulation. Method A consecutive sample of 11 pedophile forensic inpatients exclusively attracted to boys and 12 age-matched homosexual control participants from a comparable socioeconomic stratum underwent functional magnetic resonance imaging during a visual sexual stimulation procedure that used sexually stimulating and emotionally neutral photographs. Sexual arousal was assessed according to a subjective rating scale. Results In contrast to sexually neutral pictures, in both groups sexually arousing pictures having both homosexual and pedophile content activated brain areas known to be involved in processing visual stimuli containing emotional content, including the occipitotemporal and prefrontal cortices. However, during presentation of the respective sexual stimuli, the thalamus, globus pallidus and striatum, which correspond to the key areas of the brain involved in sexual arousal and behaviour, showed significant activation in pedophiles, but not in control subjects. Conclusions Central processing of visual sexual stimuli in homosexual pedophiles seems to be comparable to that in nonpedophile control subjects. However, compared with homosexual control subjects, activation patterns in pedophiles refer more strongly to subcortical regions, which have previously been discussed in the context of processing reward signals and also play an important role in addictive and stimulus-controlled behaviour. Thus future studies should further elucidate the specificity of these brain regions for the processing of sexual stimuli in pedophilia and should address the generally weaker activation pattern in homosexual men. PMID:18197269

  8. Interpersonal touch suppresses visual processing of aversive stimuli

    PubMed Central

    Kawamichi, Hiroaki; Kitada, Ryo; Yoshihara, Kazufumi; Takahashi, Haruka K.; Sadato, Norihiro

    2015-01-01

    Social contact is essential for survival in human society. A previous study demonstrated that interpersonal contact alleviates pain-related distress by suppressing the activity of its underlying neural network. One explanation for this is that attention is shifted from the cause of distress to interpersonal contact. To test this hypothesis, we conducted a functional MRI (fMRI) study wherein eight pairs of close female friends rated the aversiveness of aversive and non-aversive visual stimuli under two conditions: joining hands either with a rubber model (rubber-hand condition) or with a close friend (human-hand condition). Subsequently, participants rated the overall comfortableness of each condition. The rating result after fMRI indicated that participants experienced greater comfortableness during the human-hand compared to the rubber-hand condition, whereas aversiveness ratings during fMRI were comparable across conditions. The fMRI results showed that the two conditions commonly produced aversive-related activation in both sides of the visual cortex (including V1, V2, and V5). An interaction between aversiveness and hand type showed rubber-hand-specific activation for (aversive > non-aversive) in other visual areas (including V1, V2, V3, and V4v). The effect of interpersonal contact on the processing of aversive stimuli was negatively correlated with the increment of attentional focus to aversiveness measured by a pain-catastrophizing scale. These results suggest that interpersonal touch suppresses the processing of aversive visual stimuli in the occipital cortex. This effect covaried with aversiveness-insensitivity, such that aversive-insensitive individuals might require a lesser degree of attentional capture to aversive-stimulus processing. As joining hands did not influence the subjective ratings of aversiveness, interpersonal touch may operate by redirecting excessive attention away from aversive characteristics of the stimuli. PMID:25904856

  9. Facilitated processing of visual stimuli associated with the body.

    PubMed

    Whiteley, Louise; Kennett, Steffan; Taylor-Clarke, Marisa; Haggard, Patrick

    2004-01-01

    Recent work on tactile perception has revealed enhanced tactile acuity and speeded spatial-choice reaction times (RTs) when viewing the stimulated body site as opposed to viewing a neutral object. Here we examine whether this body-view enhancement effect extends to visual targets. Participants performed a speeded spatial discrimination between two lights attached either to their own left index finger or to a wooden finger-shaped object, making a simple distal--proximal decision. We filmed either the finger-mounted or the object-mounted lights in separate experimental blocks and the live scene was projected onto a screen in front of the participants. Thus, participants responded to identical visual targets varying only in their context: on the body or not. Results revealed a large performance advantage for the finger-mounted stimuli: reaction times were substantially reduced, while discrimination accuracy was unaffected. With this finding we address concerns associated with previous work on the processing of stimuli attributed to the self and extend the finding of a performance advantage for such stimuli to vision. PMID:15176615

  10. A method for automatically abstracting visual documents

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rorvig, Mark E.

    1994-01-01

    Visual documents--motion sequences on film, videotape, and digital recording--constitute a major source of information for the Space Agency, as well as all other government and private sector entities. This article describes a method for automatically selecting key frames from visual documents. These frames may in turn be used to represent the total image sequence of visual documents in visual libraries, hypermedia systems, and training algorithm reduces 51 minutes of video sequences to 134 frames; a reduction of information in the range of 700:1.

  11. Enhanced recognition memory in grapheme-color synaesthesia for different categories of visual stimuli

    PubMed Central

    Ward, Jamie; Hovard, Peter; Jones, Alicia; Rothen, Nicolas

    2013-01-01

    Memory has been shown to be enhanced in grapheme-color synaesthesia, and this enhancement extends to certain visual stimuli (that don't induce synaesthesia) as well as stimuli comprised of graphemes (which do). Previous studies have used a variety of testing procedures to assess memory in synaesthesia (e.g., free recall, recognition, associative learning) making it hard to know the extent to which memory benefits are attributable to the stimulus properties themselves, the testing method, participant strategies, or some combination of these factors. In the first experiment, we use the same testing procedure (recognition memory) for a variety of stimuli (written words, non-words, scenes, and fractals) and also check which memorization strategies were used. We demonstrate that grapheme-color synaesthetes show enhanced memory across all these stimuli, but this is not found for a non-visual type of synaesthesia (lexical-gustatory). In the second experiment, the memory advantage for scenes is explored further by manipulating the properties of the old and new images (changing color, orientation, or object presence). Again, grapheme-color synaesthetes show a memory advantage for scenes across all manipulations. Although recognition memory is generally enhanced in this study, the largest effects were found for abstract visual images (fractals) and scenes for which color can be used to discriminate old/new status. PMID:24187542

  12. Cortical responses from adults and infants to complex visual stimuli.

    PubMed

    Schulman-Galambos, C; Galambos, R

    1978-10-01

    Event-related potentials (ERPs) time-locked to the onset of visual stimuli were extracted from the EEG of normal adult (N = 16) and infant (N = 23) subjects. Subjects were not required to make any response. Stimuli delivered to the adults were 150 msec exposures of 2 sets of colored slides projected in 4 blocks, 2 in focus and 2 out of focus. Infants received 2-sec exposures of slides showing people, colored drawings or scenes from Disneyland, as well as 2-sec illuminations of the experimenter as she played a game or of a TV screen the baby was watching. The adult ERPs showed 6 waves (N1 through P4) in the 140--600-msec range; this included a positive wave at around 350 msec that was large when the stimuli were focused and smaller when they were not. The waves in the 150--200-msec range, by contrast, steadily dropped in amplitude as the experiment progressed. The infant ERPs differed greatly from the adult ones in morphology, usually showing a positive (latency about 200 msec)--negative(5--600msec)--positive(1000msec) sequence. This ERP appeared in all the stimulus conditions; its presence or absence, furthermore, was correlated with whether or not the baby seemed interested in the stimuli. Four infants failed to produce these ERPs; an independent measure of attention to the stimuli, heart rate deceleration, was demonstrated in two of them. An electrode placed beneath the eye to monitor eye movements yielded ERPs closely resembling those derived from the scalp in most subjects; reasons are given for assigning this response to activity in the brain, probably at the frontal pole. This study appears to be one of the first to search for cognitive 'late waves' in a no-task situation. The results suggest that further work with such task-free paradigms may yield additional useful techniques for studying the ERP.

  13. Determination of myopes' visual acuity using stimuli with different contrast

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ikaunieks, G.; Caure, E.; Kassaliete, E.; Meskovska, Z.

    2012-10-01

    The influence of different contrast stimuli on the myopes’ visual acuity (VA) was studied using positive (35.7), negative (-0.97) and low contrast (-0.11) Landolt optotypes. Test subjects were 13 myopes with corrected eyesight and 8 emmetropes, all of them being 20-22 years old. For VA determination the FrACT computer program was employed. In the tests it was found that for emmetropes the positive and negative contrast VA values do not differ significantly, while for myopes the respective values are better with positive than with negative contrast stimuli. These differences were the same in the measurements taken with spectacles or contact lenses. Our results also show that the retinal straylight created by clean spectacles or soft contact lenses is similar in both cases. <abstract xml:lang="lv">Dažu autoru pētījumi rāda, ka miopijas gadījumā redzes asums ir labāks ar pozitīva Vēbera kontrasta stimuliem (balts stimuls uz melna fona) nekā negatīva kontrasta stimuliem (melns stimuls uz balta fona). Šis fenomens tiek saistītas ar neirālām izmaiņām ON un OFF ceļos un miopiskās acīs. Citi pētījumi rāda, ka arī acī izkliedētās gaismas ietekmē labāks redzes asums ir ar pozitīviem kontrasta stimuliem nekā negatīva. Miopijas gadījumā papildus gaismas izkliedi rada briļļu lēcas vai kontaktlēcas. Mēs savā pētījumā vēlējāmies noskaidrot, cik lielā mērā labāks redzes asums ar pozitīva kontrasta stimuliem miopiskās acīs ir saistāms ar optiskās korekcijas radīto gaismas izkliedi. Pētījumā piedalījās 21 dalībnieks - 8 emetropi un 13 miopi ar sfērisko refrakcijas lielumu no -1.25 līdz -6,25 D. Dalībnieku vecums bija no 20 līdz 22 gadi. Izmantojot FrACT datorprogrammu, tika noteiks monokulārais redzes asums VA ar Landolta gredzeniem pie pozitīva, negatīva un zema kontrasta fotopiskos apstākļos. Vēbera kontrasti stimuliem attiecīgi bija 35.7, -0.97 un -0.11. Miopiem mērījumi tika veikti gan ar brillēm, gan

  14. Visual laterality in dolphins: importance of the familiarity of stimuli

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Many studies of cerebral asymmetries in different species lead, on the one hand, to a better understanding of the functions of each cerebral hemisphere and, on the other hand, to develop an evolutionary history of hemispheric laterality. Our animal model is particularly interesting because of its original evolutionary path, i.e. return to aquatic life after a terrestrial phase. The rare reports concerning visual laterality of marine mammals investigated mainly discrimination processes. As dolphins are migrant species they are confronted to a changing environment. Being able to categorize new versus familiar objects would allow dolphins a rapid adaptation to novel environments. Visual laterality could be a prerequisite to this adaptability. To date, no study, to our knowledge, has analyzed the environmental factors that could influence their visual laterality. Results We investigated visual laterality expressed spontaneously at the water surface by a group of five common bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) in response to various stimuli. The stimuli presented ranged from very familiar objects (known and manipulated previously) to familiar objects (known but never manipulated) to unfamiliar objects (unknown, never seen previously). At the group level, dolphins used their left eye to observe very familiar objects and their right eye to observe unfamiliar objects. However, eyes are used indifferently to observe familiar objects with intermediate valence. Conclusion Our results suggest different visual cerebral processes based either on the global shape of well-known objects or on local details of unknown objects. Moreover, the manipulation of an object appears necessary for these dolphins to construct a global representation of an object enabling its immediate categorization for subsequent use. Our experimental results pointed out some cognitive capacities of dolphins which might be crucial for their wild life given their fission-fusion social system

  15. Conditional Relations with Compound Abstract Stimuli Using a Go/No-Go Procedure

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Debert, Paula; Matos, Maria Amelia; McIlvane, William

    2007-01-01

    The aim of this study was to evaluate whether emergent conditional relations could be established with a go/no-go procedure using compound abstract stimuli. The procedure was conducted with 6 adult humans. During training, responses emitted in the presence of certain stimulus compounds (A1B1, A2B2, A3B3, B1C1, B2C2, and B3C3) were followed by…

  16. The Instructional Effectiveness of Integrating Abstract and Realistic Visualization.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Joseph, John H.

    This study examined the question of whether the integration of abstract and realistic visualization can improve the effectiveness of visualized instruction. Two methods of integrating visualizations were investigated. The first method used hybrid illustrations, i.e., a real color photograph into which a line drawing segment has been inserted. This…

  17. Habituation and the reinforcing effectiveness of visual stimuli.

    PubMed

    Lloyd, David R; Gancarz, Amy M; Ashrafioun, Lisham; Kausch, Michael A; Richards, Jerry B

    2012-10-01

    The term "sensory reinforcer" has been used to refer to sensory stimuli (e.g. light onset) that are primary reinforcers in order to differentiate them from other more biologically important primary reinforcers (e.g. food and water). Acquisition of snout poke responding for a visual stimulus (5 s light onset) with fixed ratio 1 (FR 1), variable-interval 1 min (VI 1 min), or variable-interval 6 min (VI 6 min) schedules of reinforcement was tested in three groups of rats (n=8/group). The VI 6 min schedule of reinforcement produced a higher response rate than the FR 1 or VI 1 min schedules of visual stimulus reinforcement. One explanation for greater responding on the VI 6 min schedule relative to the FR 1 and VI 1 min schedules is that the reinforcing effectiveness of light onset habituated more rapidly in the FR 1 and VI 1 min groups as compared to the VI 6 min group. The inverse relationship between response rate and the rate of visual stimulus reinforcement is opposite to results from studies with biologically important reinforcers which indicate a positive relationship between response and reinforcement rate. Rapid habituation of reinforcing effectiveness may be a fundamental characteristic of sensory reinforcers that differentiates them from biologically important reinforcers, which are required to maintain homeostatic balance.

  18. Neuronal Representation of Ultraviolet Visual Stimuli in Mouse Primary Visual Cortex.

    PubMed

    Tan, Zhongchao; Sun, Wenzhi; Chen, Tsai-Wen; Kim, Douglas; Ji, Na

    2015-01-01

    The mouse has become an important model for understanding the neural basis of visual perception. Although it has long been known that mouse lens transmits ultraviolet (UV) light and mouse opsins have absorption in the UV band, little is known about how UV visual information is processed in the mouse brain. Using a custom UV stimulation system and in vivo calcium imaging, we characterized the feature selectivity of layer 2/3 neurons in mouse primary visual cortex (V1). In adult mice, a comparable percentage of the neuronal population responds to UV and visible stimuli, with similar pattern selectivity and receptive field properties. In young mice, the orientation selectivity for UV stimuli increased steadily during development, but not direction selectivity. Our results suggest that, by expanding the spectral window through which the mouse can acquire visual information, UV sensitivity provides an important component for mouse vision. PMID:26219604

  19. Neuronal Representation of Ultraviolet Visual Stimuli in Mouse Primary Visual Cortex

    PubMed Central

    Tan, Zhongchao; Sun, Wenzhi; Chen, Tsai-Wen; Kim, Douglas; Ji, Na

    2015-01-01

    The mouse has become an important model for understanding the neural basis of visual perception. Although it has long been known that mouse lens transmits ultraviolet (UV) light and mouse opsins have absorption in the UV band, little is known about how UV visual information is processed in the mouse brain. Using a custom UV stimulation system and in vivo calcium imaging, we characterized the feature selectivity of layer 2/3 neurons in mouse primary visual cortex (V1). In adult mice, a comparable percentage of the neuronal population responds to UV and visible stimuli, with similar pattern selectivity and receptive field properties. In young mice, the orientation selectivity for UV stimuli increased steadily during development, but not direction selectivity. Our results suggest that, by expanding the spectral window through which the mouse can acquire visual information, UV sensitivity provides an important component for mouse vision. PMID:26219604

  20. Response time to colored stimuli in the full visual field

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Haines, R. F.; Dawson, L. M.; Galvan, T.; Reid, L. M.

    1975-01-01

    Peripheral visual response time was measured in seven dark adapted subjects to the onset of small (45' arc diam), brief (50 msec), colored (blue, yellow, green, red) and white stimuli imaged at 72 locations within their binocular field of view. The blue, yellow, and green stimuli were matched for brightness at about 2.6 sub log 10 units above their absolute light threshold, and they appeared at an unexpected time and location. These data were obtained to provide response time and no-response data for use in various design disciplines involving instrument panel layout. The results indicated that the retina possesses relatively concentric regions within each of which mean response time can be expected to be of approximately the same duration. These regions are centered near the fovea and extend farther horizontally than vertically. Mean foveal response time was fastest for yellow and slowest for blue. Three and one-half percent of the total 56,410 trials presented resulted in no-responses. Regardless of stimulus color, the lowest percentage of no-responses occurred within 30 deg arc from the fovea and the highest within 40 deg to 80 deg arc below the fovea.

  1. Massively parallel neural encoding and decoding of visual stimuli.

    PubMed

    Lazar, Aurel A; Zhou, Yiyin

    2012-08-01

    The massively parallel nature of video Time Encoding Machines (TEMs) calls for scalable, massively parallel decoders that are implemented with neural components. The current generation of decoding algorithms is based on computing the pseudo-inverse of a matrix and does not satisfy these requirements. Here we consider video TEMs with an architecture built using Gabor receptive fields and a population of Integrate-and-Fire neurons. We show how to build a scalable architecture for video Time Decoding Machines using recurrent neural networks. Furthermore, we extend our architecture to handle the reconstruction of visual stimuli encoded with massively parallel video TEMs having neurons with random thresholds. Finally, we discuss in detail our algorithms and demonstrate their scalability and performance on a large scale GPU cluster. PMID:22397951

  2. The Effects on Visually Impaired Children of Viewing Fluorescent Stimuli under Black-Light Conditions.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    LaGrow, S. J.; Leung, J-P.; Leung, S.; Yeung, P.

    1998-01-01

    This study compared effects of four visual conditions of stimuli and light on the visual performance of 30 children with low vision (divided into high, and low, visual-acuity groups). Orange stimuli viewed under black light resulted in the best overall performance, benefitted the low-acuity group more than the high-acuity group, and was the…

  3. Effects of Background Color on Detecting Spot Stimuli in the Upper and Lower Visual Fields

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Maehara, Goro; Okubo, Matia; Michimata, Chikashi

    2004-01-01

    Participants were required to detect spot stimuli briefly presented to the upper, central, or lower visual fields. The stimuli were presented either on a green or a red background. Results showed that reaction time (RT) was shorter for the lower visual field (LVF) compared to the upper visual field (UVF). Furthermore, this LVF advantage was…

  4. Female gray treefrogs, Hyla versicolor, are responsive to visual stimuli but unselective of stimulus characteristics.

    PubMed

    Reichert, Michael S; Galante, Holland; Höbel, Gerlinde

    2014-09-15

    The visual ecology of nocturnal anurans is poorly understood, but there is growing evidence that vision plays a role in important behaviors such as mate choice. While several recent studies have demonstrated that females are responsive to visual cues when selecting mates, the forces responsible for these preferences are unknown. We investigated the responsiveness of female gray treefrogs, Hyla versicolor, to video playbacks of calling conspecific males in which we varied attributes of the vocal sac, a conspicuous visual characteristic of calling males and a target of female choice in other species. Females responded surprisingly strongly to the video playbacks, but did so indiscriminately with respect to variation in vocal sac characteristics. We followed up on these results with a series of additional tests that examined female responses to abstract stimuli. Females continued to respond to such stimuli, leading us to conclude that their behavior was related to a generalized phototactic response. Because of this, we were unable to make conclusions regarding female preferences for vocal sac characteristics. Nonetheless, our results are significant in two respects. First, we illustrate that despite much effort into improving video playback methodologies, challenges remain, and we offer our experimental design as a method to ensure that appropriate conclusions can be drawn from such studies. Second, we argue that the female phototactic response has potentially significant behavioral implications and in general the consequences of anuran visual preferences deserve further investigation. PMID:25013111

  5. Visual anticipatory information modulates multisensory interactions of artificial audiovisual stimuli.

    PubMed

    Vroomen, Jean; Stekelenburg, Jeroen J

    2010-07-01

    The neural activity of speech sound processing (the N1 component of the auditory ERP) can be suppressed if a speech sound is accompanied by concordant lip movements. Here we demonstrate that this audiovisual interaction is neither speech specific nor linked to humanlike actions but can be observed with artificial stimuli if their timing is made predictable. In Experiment 1, a pure tone synchronized with a deformation of a rectangle induced a smaller auditory N1 than auditory-only presentations if the temporal occurrence of this audiovisual event was made predictable by two moving disks that touched the rectangle. Local autoregressive average source estimation indicated that this audiovisual interaction may be related to integrative processing in auditory areas. When the moving disks did not precede the audiovisual stimulus--making the onset unpredictable--there was no N1 reduction. In Experiment 2, the predictability of the leading visual signal was manipulated by introducing a temporal asynchrony between the audiovisual event and the collision of moving disks. Audiovisual events occurred either at the moment, before (too "early"), or after (too "late") the disks collided on the rectangle. When asynchronies varied from trial to trial--rendering the moving disks unreliable temporal predictors of the audiovisual event--the N1 reduction was abolished. These results demonstrate that the N1 suppression is induced by visual information that both precedes and reliably predicts audiovisual onset, without a necessary link to human action-related neural mechanisms.

  6. The Use of Visualizing in Comprehending Difficult Abstract Prose.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McGlinn, James E.

    A study investigated the use of visualizing in remembering or understanding difficult abstract prose. Subjects, 40 students in two freshman developmental reading classes in a state college in North Carolina, received either instruction in drawing out images or in writing paraphrases as they read difficult material. Posttests of abstract reading…

  7. Perceived duration of Visual and Tactile Stimuli Depends on Perceived Speed

    PubMed Central

    Tomassini, Alice; Gori, Monica; Burr, David; Sandini, Giulio; Morrone, Maria Concetta

    2011-01-01

    It is known that the perceived duration of visual stimuli is strongly influenced by speed: faster moving stimuli appear to last longer. To test whether this is a general property of sensory systems we asked participants to reproduce the duration of visual and tactile gratings, and visuo-tactile gratings moving at a variable speed (3.5–15 cm/s) for three different durations (400, 600, and 800 ms). For both modalities, the apparent duration of the stimulus increased strongly with stimulus speed, more so for tactile than for visual stimuli. In addition, visual stimuli were perceived to last approximately 200 ms longer than tactile stimuli. The apparent duration of visuo-tactile stimuli lay between the unimodal estimates, as the Bayesian account predicts, but the bimodal precision of the reproduction did not show the theoretical improvement. A cross-modal speed-matching task revealed that visual stimuli were perceived to move faster than tactile stimuli. To test whether the large difference in the perceived duration of visual and tactile stimuli resulted from the difference in their perceived speed, we repeated the time reproduction task with visual and tactile stimuli matched in apparent speed. This reduced, but did not completely eliminate the difference in apparent duration. These results show that for both vision and touch, perceived duration depends on speed, pointing to common strategies of time perception. PMID:21941471

  8. Exposition of visual stimuli in an aversive situation and self-exposure to light in rats.

    PubMed

    Matysiak, J

    1978-01-01

    The aim of the work presented was to test the effect of associating visual stimuli with an aversive situation on later self-exposure to these stimuli. Forty-five male albino rats (Wistar) aged approximately 90 days were divided into three groups; visual trained in avoidance response to visual stimuli; auditory trained in avoidance response to auditory stimuli; and neutral untrained in avoidance response. In part two of the experiment all the rats were tested in a chamber for self-exposure to light. A statistically significant increase in the rewarding value of visual stimulation was found in the visual group in comparison with the remaining groups. This effect is interpreted as a result of extinction of anxiety response to visual stimuli as a result of which relaxation begins to positively reinforce the response leading to switching on the light.

  9. Serial position effects in visual short-term memory for words and abstract spatial patterns.

    PubMed

    Korsnes, M S; Magnussen, S; Reinvang, I

    1996-03-01

    Two experiments tested the effects of list position, and retention-interval in recognition for two distinct stimulus categories in young adults. Stimulus categories were spatial abstract patterns and words presented on a computer screen. At short delay intervals recency effects predominates and at longer delay intervals a primacy effect predominates in both experiments, indicating similar basic memory processes producing the serial position functions for the two different categories of visual stimuli, but as length of retention-interval increases, memory for first list items improves for words and remains constant for abstract patterns. Recency functions are similar for both stimulus categories tested.

  10. Neural consequences of competing stimuli in both visual hemifields: a physiological basis for visual extinction.

    PubMed

    Fink, G R; Driver, J; Rorden, C; Baldeweg, T; Dolan, R J

    2000-04-01

    We used positron emission tomography in healthy volunteers to test hemispheric rivalry theories for normal and pathological spatial attention, which provide an influential account of contralesional extinction on bilateral stimulation after unilateral brain injury. Subjects reported visual characters presented either unilaterally or bilaterally. An extinction-like pattern was found behaviorally, with characters in one hemifield reported less accurately when competing characters appeared in the other hemifield. Differences in neural activity for unilateral minus bilateral conditions revealed greater activation of striate and extrastriate areas for stimuli presented without competing stimuli in the other hemifield. Thus, simultaneous bilateral stimulation led to a significant reduction in response by spatiotopic visual cortex contralateral to a particular stimulus. These data provide physiological support for interhemispheric rivalry in the intact human brain, and demonstrate that such competition impacts at early levels of perceptual processing.

  11. Sensitivity to Visual and Auditory Stimuli in Children with Developmental Dyslexia

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    King, Bernardine; Wood, Clare; Faulkner, Dorothy

    2008-01-01

    This study considered the extent to which 23 children with dyslexia differed from 23 reading age (RA) and 23 chronological age (CA) matched controls in their ability to make temporal judgements about auditory and visual sequences of stimuli, and in the speed of their reactions to the onsets and offsets of visual and auditory stimuli. The children…

  12. Visual arts training is linked to flexible attention to local and global levels of visual stimuli.

    PubMed

    Chamberlain, Rebecca; Wagemans, Johan

    2015-10-01

    Observational drawing skill has been shown to be associated with the ability to focus on local visual details. It is unclear whether superior performance in local processing is indicative of the ability to attend to, and flexibly switch between, local and global levels of visual stimuli. It is also unknown whether these attentional enhancements remain specific to observational drawing skill or are a product of a wide range of artistic activities. The current study aimed to address these questions by testing if flexible visual processing predicts artistic group membership and observational drawing skill in a sample of first-year bachelor's degree art students (n=23) and non-art students (n=23). A pattern of local and global visual processing enhancements was found in relation to artistic group membership and drawing skill, with local processing ability found to be specifically related to individual differences in drawing skill. Enhanced global processing and more fluent switching between local and global levels of hierarchical stimuli predicted both drawing skill and artistic group membership, suggesting that these are beneficial attentional mechanisms for art-making in a range of domains. These findings support a top-down attentional model of artistic expertise and shed light on the domain specific and domain-general attentional enhancements induced by proficiency in the visual arts.

  13. Abnormalities in the Visual Processing of Viewing Complex Visual Stimuli Amongst Individuals With Body Image Concern.

    PubMed

    Duncum, A J F; Atkins, K J; Beilharz, F L; Mundy, M E

    2016-01-01

    Individuals with body dysmorphic disorder (BDD) and clinically concerning body-image concern (BIC) appear to possess abnormalities in the way they perceive visual information in the form of a bias towards local visual processing. As inversion interrupts normal global processing, forcing individuals to process locally, an upright-inverted stimulus discrimination task was used to investigate this phenomenon. We examined whether individuals with nonclinical, yet high levels of BIC would show signs of this bias, in the form of reduced inversion effects (i.e., increased local processing). Furthermore, we assessed whether this bias appeared for general visual stimuli or specifically for appearance-related stimuli, such as faces and bodies. Participants with high-BIC (n = 25) and low-BIC (n = 30) performed a stimulus discrimination task with upright and inverted faces, scenes, objects, and bodies. Unexpectedly, the high-BIC group showed an increased inversion effect compared to the low-BIC group, indicating perceptual abnormalities may not be present as local processing biases, as originally thought. There was no significant difference in performance across stimulus types, signifying that any visual processing abnormalities may be general rather than appearance-based. This has important implications for whether visual processing abnormalities are predisposing factors for BDD or develop throughout the disorder. PMID:27152128

  14. Abnormalities in the Visual Processing of Viewing Complex Visual Stimuli Amongst Individuals With Body Image Concern

    PubMed Central

    Duncum, A. J. F.; Atkins, K. J.; Beilharz, F. L.; Mundy, M. E.

    2016-01-01

    Individuals with body dysmorphic disorder (BDD) and clinically concerning body-image concern (BIC) appear to possess abnormalities in the way they perceive visual information in the form of a bias towards local visual processing. As inversion interrupts normal global processing, forcing individuals to process locally, an upright-inverted stimulus discrimination task was used to investigate this phenomenon. We examined whether individuals with nonclinical, yet high levels of BIC would show signs of this bias, in the form of reduced inversion effects (i.e., increased local processing). Furthermore, we assessed whether this bias appeared for general visual stimuli or specifically for appearance-related stimuli, such as faces and bodies. Participants with high-BIC (n = 25) and low-BIC (n = 30) performed a stimulus discrimination task with upright and inverted faces, scenes, objects, and bodies. Unexpectedly, the high-BIC group showed an increased inversion effect compared to the low-BIC group, indicating perceptual abnormalities may not be present as local processing biases, as originally thought. There was no significant difference in performance across stimulus types, signifying that any visual processing abnormalities may be general rather than appearance-based. This has important implications for whether visual processing abnormalities are predisposing factors for BDD or develop throughout the disorder. PMID:27152128

  15. Visual categorization: accessing abstraction in non-human primates.

    PubMed Central

    Fabre-Thorpe, Michèle

    2003-01-01

    Evolution might have set the basic foundations for abstract mental representation long ago. Because of language, mental abilities would have reached different degrees of sophistication in mammals and in humans but would be, essentially, of the same nature. Thus, humans and animals might rely on the same basic mechanisms that could be masked in humans by the use of sophisticated strategies. In this paper, monkey and human abilities are compared in a variety of perceptual tasks including visual categorization to assess behavioural similarities and dissimilarities, and to determine the level of abstraction of monkeys' mental representations. The question of how these abstract representations might be encoded in the brain is then addressed. A comparative study of the neural processing underlying abstract cognitive operations in animals and humans might help to understand when abstraction emerged in the phylogenetic scale, and how it increased in complexity. PMID:12903657

  16. A multi-level typology of abstract visualization tasks.

    PubMed

    Brehmer, Matthew; Munzner, Tamara

    2013-12-01

    The considerable previous work characterizing visualization usage has focused on low-level tasks or interactions and high-level tasks, leaving a gap between them that is not addressed. This gap leads to a lack of distinction between the ends and means of a task, limiting the potential for rigorous analysis. We contribute a multi-level typology of visualization tasks to address this gap, distinguishing why and how a visualization task is performed, as well as what the task inputs and outputs are. Our typology allows complex tasks to be expressed as sequences of interdependent simpler tasks, resulting in concise and flexible descriptions for tasks of varying complexity and scope. It provides abstract rather than domain-specific descriptions of tasks, so that useful comparisons can be made between visualization systems targeted at different application domains. This descriptive power supports a level of analysis required for the generation of new designs, by guiding the translation of domain-specific problems into abstract tasks, and for the qualitative evaluation of visualization usage. We demonstrate the benefits of our approach in a detailed case study, comparing task descriptions from our typology to those derived from related work. We also discuss the similarities and differences between our typology and over two dozen extant classification systems and theoretical frameworks from the literatures of visualization, human-computer interaction, information retrieval, communications, and cartography. PMID:24051804

  17. Anticipation of emotionally aversive visual stimuli activates right insula.

    PubMed

    Simmons, Alan; Matthews, Scott C; Stein, Murray B; Paulus, Martin P

    2004-10-01

    Understanding the neural substrates of anticipation is required for a comprehensive model of the ways in which anxiety influences information processing. While it is apparent that the insula and medial frontal cortex are involved in processing anticipation of physical (i.e., painful) stimuli, their role in processing anticipation of aversive affective stimuli has yet to be determined. Twenty-eight healthy non-phobic volunteers observed aversive affective images (spiders and snakes) that were preceded by an auditory signal. The insula, dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, and parahippocampal gyrus activated during anticipation of aversive affective images. These findings indicate that common neural circuitry is involved in the anticipation of (and, perhaps, the subjective experience of anticipating) aversive affective and noxious physical stimuli. PMID:15371746

  18. Klinefelter syndrome has increased brain responses to auditory stimuli and motor output, but not to visual stimuli or Stroop adaptation

    PubMed Central

    Wallentin, Mikkel; Skakkebæk, Anne; Bojesen, Anders; Fedder, Jens; Laurberg, Peter; Østergaard, John R.; Hertz, Jens Michael; Pedersen, Anders Degn; Gravholt, Claus Højbjerg

    2016-01-01

    Klinefelter syndrome (47, XXY) (KS) is a genetic syndrome characterized by the presence of an extra X chromosome and low level of testosterone, resulting in a number of neurocognitive abnormalities, yet little is known about brain function. This study investigated the fMRI-BOLD response from KS relative to a group of Controls to basic motor, perceptual, executive and adaptation tasks. Participants (N: KS = 49; Controls = 49) responded to whether the words “GREEN” or “RED” were displayed in green or red (incongruent versus congruent colors). One of the colors was presented three times as often as the other, making it possible to study both congruency and adaptation effects independently. Auditory stimuli saying “GREEN” or “RED” had the same distribution, making it possible to study effects of perceptual modality as well as Frequency effects across modalities. We found that KS had an increased response to motor output in primary motor cortex and an increased response to auditory stimuli in auditory cortices, but no difference in primary visual cortices. KS displayed a diminished response to written visual stimuli in secondary visual regions near the Visual Word Form Area, consistent with the widespread dyslexia in the group. No neural differences were found in inhibitory control (Stroop) or in adaptation to differences in stimulus frequencies. Across groups we found a strong positive correlation between age and BOLD response in the brain's motor network with no difference between groups. No effects of testosterone level or brain volume were found. In sum, the present findings suggest that auditory and motor systems in KS are selectively affected, perhaps as a compensatory strategy, and that this is not a systemic effect as it is not seen in the visual system. PMID:26958463

  19. Klinefelter syndrome has increased brain responses to auditory stimuli and motor output, but not to visual stimuli or Stroop adaptation.

    PubMed

    Wallentin, Mikkel; Skakkebæk, Anne; Bojesen, Anders; Fedder, Jens; Laurberg, Peter; Østergaard, John R; Hertz, Jens Michael; Pedersen, Anders Degn; Gravholt, Claus Højbjerg

    2016-01-01

    Klinefelter syndrome (47, XXY) (KS) is a genetic syndrome characterized by the presence of an extra X chromosome and low level of testosterone, resulting in a number of neurocognitive abnormalities, yet little is known about brain function. This study investigated the fMRI-BOLD response from KS relative to a group of Controls to basic motor, perceptual, executive and adaptation tasks. Participants (N: KS = 49; Controls = 49) responded to whether the words "GREEN" or "RED" were displayed in green or red (incongruent versus congruent colors). One of the colors was presented three times as often as the other, making it possible to study both congruency and adaptation effects independently. Auditory stimuli saying "GREEN" or "RED" had the same distribution, making it possible to study effects of perceptual modality as well as Frequency effects across modalities. We found that KS had an increased response to motor output in primary motor cortex and an increased response to auditory stimuli in auditory cortices, but no difference in primary visual cortices. KS displayed a diminished response to written visual stimuli in secondary visual regions near the Visual Word Form Area, consistent with the widespread dyslexia in the group. No neural differences were found in inhibitory control (Stroop) or in adaptation to differences in stimulus frequencies. Across groups we found a strong positive correlation between age and BOLD response in the brain's motor network with no difference between groups. No effects of testosterone level or brain volume were found. In sum, the present findings suggest that auditory and motor systems in KS are selectively affected, perhaps as a compensatory strategy, and that this is not a systemic effect as it is not seen in the visual system. PMID:26958463

  20. Klinefelter syndrome has increased brain responses to auditory stimuli and motor output, but not to visual stimuli or Stroop adaptation.

    PubMed

    Wallentin, Mikkel; Skakkebæk, Anne; Bojesen, Anders; Fedder, Jens; Laurberg, Peter; Østergaard, John R; Hertz, Jens Michael; Pedersen, Anders Degn; Gravholt, Claus Højbjerg

    2016-01-01

    Klinefelter syndrome (47, XXY) (KS) is a genetic syndrome characterized by the presence of an extra X chromosome and low level of testosterone, resulting in a number of neurocognitive abnormalities, yet little is known about brain function. This study investigated the fMRI-BOLD response from KS relative to a group of Controls to basic motor, perceptual, executive and adaptation tasks. Participants (N: KS = 49; Controls = 49) responded to whether the words "GREEN" or "RED" were displayed in green or red (incongruent versus congruent colors). One of the colors was presented three times as often as the other, making it possible to study both congruency and adaptation effects independently. Auditory stimuli saying "GREEN" or "RED" had the same distribution, making it possible to study effects of perceptual modality as well as Frequency effects across modalities. We found that KS had an increased response to motor output in primary motor cortex and an increased response to auditory stimuli in auditory cortices, but no difference in primary visual cortices. KS displayed a diminished response to written visual stimuli in secondary visual regions near the Visual Word Form Area, consistent with the widespread dyslexia in the group. No neural differences were found in inhibitory control (Stroop) or in adaptation to differences in stimulus frequencies. Across groups we found a strong positive correlation between age and BOLD response in the brain's motor network with no difference between groups. No effects of testosterone level or brain volume were found. In sum, the present findings suggest that auditory and motor systems in KS are selectively affected, perhaps as a compensatory strategy, and that this is not a systemic effect as it is not seen in the visual system.

  1. Sexual preference for child and aggressive stimuli: comparison of rapists and child molesters using auditory and visual stimuli.

    PubMed

    Miner, M H; West, M A; Day, D M

    1995-06-01

    154 Ss were tested using penile plethysmography as part of intake into a voluntary inpatient sex offender treatment program. The testing protocol included slide stimuli of nude males and females in four age categories ranging from age 1 to adult; audiotaped descriptions of sexual activity with children of both genders which included fondling, sexual contact with no resistance, coercive sexual contact, sexual assault, nonsexual assault, and consensual sexual contact with an adult; videotaped depictions of rape of an adult woman, nonsexual assault of an adult woman and consensual sexual involvement with an adult woman, and audiotaped descriptions that paralleled the videotapes. The results indicated that child molesters (male victim) show a decidedly more offense related arousal profile than either child molesters (female victim) or rapists, and that the profiles of child molesters (female victim) and rapists are remarkably similar, although statistically significantly different from each other. Rapists respond significantly more to rape and nonsexual assault than either of the two child molester groups, with child molesters with female victims responding more than those with male victims. In all three groups, the highest level of noncoercive adult responding was to women, with differences among offense groups present for visual stimuli, but not in response to auditory stimuli. Overall, the patterns of results are similar whether they are based on composites across stimulus modality or on the individual stimuli.

  2. Sexual preference for child and aggressive stimuli: comparison of rapists and child molesters using auditory and visual stimuli.

    PubMed

    Miner, M H; West, M A; Day, D M

    1995-06-01

    154 Ss were tested using penile plethysmography as part of intake into a voluntary inpatient sex offender treatment program. The testing protocol included slide stimuli of nude males and females in four age categories ranging from age 1 to adult; audiotaped descriptions of sexual activity with children of both genders which included fondling, sexual contact with no resistance, coercive sexual contact, sexual assault, nonsexual assault, and consensual sexual contact with an adult; videotaped depictions of rape of an adult woman, nonsexual assault of an adult woman and consensual sexual involvement with an adult woman, and audiotaped descriptions that paralleled the videotapes. The results indicated that child molesters (male victim) show a decidedly more offense related arousal profile than either child molesters (female victim) or rapists, and that the profiles of child molesters (female victim) and rapists are remarkably similar, although statistically significantly different from each other. Rapists respond significantly more to rape and nonsexual assault than either of the two child molester groups, with child molesters with female victims responding more than those with male victims. In all three groups, the highest level of noncoercive adult responding was to women, with differences among offense groups present for visual stimuli, but not in response to auditory stimuli. Overall, the patterns of results are similar whether they are based on composites across stimulus modality or on the individual stimuli. PMID:7598675

  3. Expectations accelerate entry of visual stimuli into awareness.

    PubMed

    Pinto, Yair; van Gaal, Simon; de Lange, Floris P; Lamme, Victor A F; Seth, Anil K

    2015-01-01

    How do expectations influence transitions between unconscious and conscious perceptual processing? According to the influential predictive processing framework, perceptual content is determined by predictive models of the causes of sensory signals. On one interpretation, conscious contents arise when predictive models are verified by matching sensory input (minimizing prediction error). On another, conscious contents arise when surprising events falsify current perceptual predictions. Finally, the cognitive impenetrability account posits that conscious perception is not affected by such higher level factors. To discriminate these positions, we combined predictive cueing with continuous flash suppression (CFS) in which the relative contrast of a target image gradually increases over time. In four experiments we established that expected stimuli enter consciousness faster than neutral or unexpected stimuli. These effects are difficult to account for in terms of response priming, pre-existing stimulus associations, or the attentional mechanisms that cause asynchronous temporal order judgments (of simultaneously presented stimuli). Our results further suggest that top-down expectations play a larger role when bottom-up input is ambiguous, in line with predictive processing accounts of perception. Taken together, our findings support the hypothesis that conscious access depends on verification of perceptual predictions. PMID:26114676

  4. Effects of late visual impairment on mental representations activated by visual and tactile stimuli.

    PubMed

    Cattaneo, Zaira; Vecchi, Tomaso; Monegato, Maura; Pece, Alfredo; Cornoldi, Cesare

    2007-05-01

    Similarly to sighted people, individuals congenitally affected by a severe visual impairment can maintain and mentally manipulate spatial information about tactile stimuli [Vecchi, T., Cattaneo, Z., Monegato, M., Pece, A., Cornoldi, C., Pietrini, P., 2006. Why Cyclops could not compete with Ulysses: monocular vision and mental images. NeuroReport 17, 723-726]. The aim of the present study was to assess whether the onset timing of a severe (but not total) sight loss may influence spatial imagery abilities based on haptic input. To this purpose, a group of late severe visually impaired people and a matched group of normally sighted participants (all blindfolded) were presented with an imagery task requiring to memorize and retrieve a number of locations presented on tactile matrices. Results indicate that a severe visual deficit occurring later in life significantly impairs spatial imagery abilities to a greater extent than in the case of congenital blindness, probably as a consequence of a modest development of specific compensatory mechanisms associated with congenital deficits. PMID:17368576

  5. Attentional gain and processing capacity limits predict the propensity to neglect unexpected visual stimuli.

    PubMed

    Papera, Massimiliano; Richards, Anne

    2016-05-01

    Exogenous allocation of attentional resources allows the visual system to encode and maintain representations of stimuli in visual working memory (VWM). However, limits in the processing capacity to allocate resources can prevent unexpected visual stimuli from gaining access to VWM and thereby to consciousness. Using a novel approach to create unbiased stimuli of increasing saliency, we investigated visual processing during a visual search task in individuals who show a high or low propensity to neglect unexpected stimuli. When propensity to inattention is high, ERP recordings show a diminished amplification concomitantly with a decrease in theta band power during the N1 latency, followed by a poor target enhancement during the N2 latency. Furthermore, a later modulation in the P3 latency was also found in individuals showing propensity to visual neglect, suggesting that more effort is required for conscious maintenance of visual information in VWM. Effects during early stages of processing (N80 and P1) were also observed suggesting that sensitivity to contrasts and medium-to-high spatial frequencies may be modulated by low-level saliency (albeit no statistical group differences were found). In accordance with the Global Workplace Model, our data indicate that a lack of resources in low-level processors and visual attention may be responsible for the failure to "ignite" a state of high-level activity spread across several brain areas that is necessary for stimuli to access awareness. These findings may aid in the development of diagnostic tests and intervention to detect/reduce inattention propensity to visual neglect of unexpected stimuli. PMID:26849023

  6. Attentional gain and processing capacity limits predict the propensity to neglect unexpected visual stimuli.

    PubMed

    Papera, Massimiliano; Richards, Anne

    2016-05-01

    Exogenous allocation of attentional resources allows the visual system to encode and maintain representations of stimuli in visual working memory (VWM). However, limits in the processing capacity to allocate resources can prevent unexpected visual stimuli from gaining access to VWM and thereby to consciousness. Using a novel approach to create unbiased stimuli of increasing saliency, we investigated visual processing during a visual search task in individuals who show a high or low propensity to neglect unexpected stimuli. When propensity to inattention is high, ERP recordings show a diminished amplification concomitantly with a decrease in theta band power during the N1 latency, followed by a poor target enhancement during the N2 latency. Furthermore, a later modulation in the P3 latency was also found in individuals showing propensity to visual neglect, suggesting that more effort is required for conscious maintenance of visual information in VWM. Effects during early stages of processing (N80 and P1) were also observed suggesting that sensitivity to contrasts and medium-to-high spatial frequencies may be modulated by low-level saliency (albeit no statistical group differences were found). In accordance with the Global Workplace Model, our data indicate that a lack of resources in low-level processors and visual attention may be responsible for the failure to "ignite" a state of high-level activity spread across several brain areas that is necessary for stimuli to access awareness. These findings may aid in the development of diagnostic tests and intervention to detect/reduce inattention propensity to visual neglect of unexpected stimuli.

  7. Contextual control using a go/no-go procedure with compound abstract stimuli.

    PubMed

    Modenesi, Rafael Diego; Debert, Paula

    2015-05-01

    Contextual control has been described as (1) a five-term contingency, in which the contextual stimulus exerts conditional control over conditional discriminations, and (2) allowing one stimulus to be a member of different equivalence classes without merging them into one. Matching-to-sample is the most commonly employed procedure to produce and study contextual control. The present study evaluated whether the go/no-go procedure with compound stimuli produces equivalence classes that share stimuli. This procedure does not allow the identification of specific stimulus functions (e.g., contextual, conditional, or discriminative functions). If equivalence classes were established with this procedure, then only the latter part of the contextual control definition (2) would be met. Six undergraduate students participated in the present study. In the training phases, responses to AC, BD, and XY compounds with stimuli from the same classes were reinforced, and responses to AC, BD, and XY compounds with stimuli from different classes were not. In addition, responses to X1A1B1, X1A2B2, X2A1B2, and X2A2B1 compounds were reinforced and responses to the other combinations were not. During the tests, the participants had to respond to new combinations of stimuli compounds YCD to indicate the formation of four equivalence classes that share stimuli: X1A1B1Y1C1D1, X1A2B2Y1C2D2, X2A1B2Y2C1D2, and X2A2B1Y2C2D1. Four of the six participants showed the establishment of these classes. These results indicate that establishing contextual stimulus functions is unnecessary to produce equivalence classes that share stimuli. Therefore, these results are inconsistent with the first part of the definition of contextual control. PMID:25969336

  8. SSVEP-based brain-computer interfaces using FSK-modulated visual stimuli.

    PubMed

    Kimura, Yosuke; Tanaka, Toshihisa; Higashi, Hiroshi; Morikawa, Naoki

    2013-10-01

    A brain-computer interface (BCI) based on steady-state visual-evoked potentials (SSVEP) has two difficulties: limitation of the number of commands and uneven probabilities of command execution. To address these problems, the present paper proposes a paradigm of BCI using frequency-modulated visual stimuli. The commands are translated into code words consisting of binary digits, to which visual stimuli with distinct frequencies are assigned. Frequencies of SSVEP are recognized to detect bits, and a command to be executed is determined from the sequence of detected bits. Experimental results show that the proposed paradigm achieves a reliable BCI with higher accuracies and balanced command executing probabilities.

  9. MEG brain activities reflecting affection for visual food stimuli.

    PubMed

    Kuriki, Shinya; Miyamura, Takahiro; Uchikawa, Yoshinori

    2010-01-01

    This study aimed to explore the modulation of alpha rhythm in response to food pictures with distinct affection values. We examined the method to discriminate subject's state, i.e., whether he/she liked the article of food or not, from MEG signals detected over the head. Pictures of familiar foods were used as affective stimuli, while those pictures with complementary color phase were used as non-affective stimuli. Alpha band signals in a narrow frequency window around the spectral peak of individual subjects were wavelet analyzed and phase-locked component to the stimulus onset was obtained as a complex number. The amplitude of the phase-locked component was averaged during 0-1 s after stimulus onset for 30 epochs in a measurement session and across 76 channels of MEG sensor. In statistical test of individual subjects, significant difference was found in the real part of the averaged phase-locked amplitude between the normal-color and reverse-color pictures. These results suggest that affective information processing of food pictures is reflected in the synchronized component of narrow band alpha rhythm. PMID:21096510

  10. Visual and auditory stimuli associated with swallowing activate mirror neurons: a magnetoencephalography study.

    PubMed

    Ushioda, Takashi; Watanabe, Yutaka; Sanjo, Yusuke; Yamane, Gen-Yuki; Abe, Shinichi; Tsuji, Yusuke; Ishiyama, Atushi

    2012-12-01

    In the present study, we evaluated activated areas of the cerebral cortex with regard to the mirror neuron system during swallowing. To identify the activated areas, we used magnetoencephalography. Subjects were ten consenting volunteers. Swallowing-related stimuli comprised an animated image of the left profile of a person swallowing water with laryngeal elevation as a visual swallowing trigger stimulus and a swallowing sound as an auditory swallowing trigger stimulus. As control stimuli, a still frame image of the left profile without an additional trigger was shown, and an artificial sound as a false auditory trigger was provided. Triggers were presented at 3,000 ms after the start of image presentation. The stimuli were combined and presented and the areas activated were identified for each stimulus. With animation and still-frame stimuli, the visual association area (Brodmann area (BA) 18) was activated at the start of image presentation, while with the swallowing sound and artificial sound stimuli, the auditory areas BA 41 and BA 42 were activated at the time of trigger presentation. However, with animation stimuli (animation stimulus, animation + swallowing sound stimuli, and animation + artificial sound stimuli), activation in BA 6 and BA 40, corresponding to mirror neurons, was observed between 620 and 720 ms before the trigger. Besides, there were also significant differences in latency time and peak intensity between animation stimulus and animation + swallowing sound stimuli. Our results suggest that mirror neurons are activated by swallowing-related visual and auditory stimuli.

  11. Auditory-visual aversive stimuli modulate the conscious experience of fear.

    PubMed

    Taffou, Marine; Guerchouche, Rachid; Drettakis, George; Viaud-Delmon, Isabelle

    2013-01-01

    In a natural environment, affective information is perceived via multiple senses, mostly audition and vision. However, the impact of multisensory information on affect remains relatively undiscovered. In this study, we investigated whether the auditory-visual presentation of aversive stimuli influences the experience of fear. We used the advantages of virtual reality to manipulate multisensory presentation and to display potentially fearful dog stimuli embedded in a natural context. We manipulated the affective reactions evoked by the dog stimuli by recruiting two groups of participants: dog-fearful and non-fearful participants. The sensitivity to dog fear was assessed psychometrically by a questionnaire and also at behavioral and subjective levels using a Behavioral Avoidance Test (BAT). Participants navigated in virtual environments, in which they encountered virtual dog stimuli presented through the auditory channel, the visual channel or both. They were asked to report their fear using Subjective Units of Distress. We compared the fear for unimodal (visual or auditory) and bimodal (auditory-visual) dog stimuli. Dog-fearful participants as well as non-fearful participants reported more fear in response to bimodal audiovisual compared to unimodal presentation of dog stimuli. These results suggest that fear is more intense when the affective information is processed via multiple sensory pathways, which might be due to a cross-modal potentiation. Our findings have implications for the field of virtual reality-based therapy of phobias. Therapies could be refined and improved by implicating and manipulating the multisensory presentation of the feared situations. PMID:24319928

  12. Resolution of static and dynamic stimuli in the peripheral visual field.

    PubMed

    Lewis, Peter; Rosén, Robert; Unsbo, Peter; Gustafsson, Jörgen

    2011-08-15

    In a clinical setting, emphasis is given to foveal visual function, and tests generally only utilize static stimuli. In this study, we measured static (SVA) and dynamic visual acuity (DVA) in the central and peripheral visual field on healthy, young emmetropic subjects using stationary and drifting Gabor patches. There were no differences between SVA and DVA in the peripheral visual field; however, SVA was superior to DVA in the fovea for both velocities tested. In addition, there was a clear naso-temporal asymmetry for both SVA and DVA for isoeccentric locations in the visual field beyond 10° eccentricity. The lack of difference in visual acuity between static and dynamic stimuli found in this study may reflect the use of drift-motion as opposed to displacement motion used in previous studies.

  13. The Role of the Primary Visual Cortex in Perceptual Suppression of Salient Visual Stimuli

    PubMed Central

    Keliris, Georgios A.; Logothetis, Nikos K.; Tolias, Andreas S.

    2010-01-01

    The role of primary visual cortex (area V1) in subjective perception has intrigued students of vision for decades. Specifically, the extent to which the activity of different types of cells (monocular versus binocular) and electrophysiological signals (i.e. local field potentials versus spiking activity) reflect perception is still debated. To address these questions we recorded from area V1 of the macaque using tetrodes during the paradigm of binocular flash suppression, where incongruent images presented dichoptically compete for perceptual dominance. We found that the activity of a minority (20%) of neurons reflect the perceived visual stimulus and these cells exhibited perceptual modulations substantially weaker in comparison to their sensory modulation induced by congruent stimuli. Importantly, perceptual modulations were found equally often for monocular and binocular cells, demonstrating that perceptual competition in V1 involves mechanisms across both types of neurons. The power of the local field potential (LFP) also showed moderate perceptual modulations with similar percentages of sites showing significant effects across frequency bands (18–22%). The possibility remains that perception may be strongly reflected in more elaborate aspects of activity in V1 circuits (e.g. specific neuronal subtypes) or perceptual states might have a modulatory role on more intricate aspects of V1 firing patterns (e.g. synchronization), not necessarily altering the firing rates of single cells or the LFP power dramatically. PMID:20844131

  14. Sensitivity to Auditory and Visual Stimuli during Early Reading Development

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    King, Bernardine; Wood, Clare; Faulkner, Dorothy

    2007-01-01

    An investigation was conducted into the visual and auditory temporal processing profiles of two groups of 4- to 6-year-old children: "pre-alphabetic" children, who showed no alphabetic ability (failing to read any non-words in a test), and those who demonstrated some alphabetic ability. This "alphabetic" group showed higher scores in reading and…

  15. Gestalt Perceptual Organization of Visual Stimuli Captures Attention Automatically: Electrophysiological Evidence

    PubMed Central

    Marini, Francesco; Marzi, Carlo A.

    2016-01-01

    The visual system leverages organizational regularities of perceptual elements to create meaningful representations of the world. One clear example of such function, which has been formalized in the Gestalt psychology principles, is the perceptual grouping of simple visual elements (e.g., lines and arcs) into unitary objects (e.g., forms and shapes). The present study sought to characterize automatic attentional capture and related cognitive processing of Gestalt-like visual stimuli at the psychophysiological level by using event-related potentials (ERPs). We measured ERPs during a simple visual reaction time task with bilateral presentations of physically matched elements with or without a Gestalt organization. Results showed that Gestalt (vs. non-Gestalt) stimuli are characterized by a larger N2pc together with enhanced ERP amplitudes of non-lateralized components (N1, N2, P3) starting around 150 ms post-stimulus onset. Thus, we conclude that Gestalt stimuli capture attention automatically and entail characteristic psychophysiological signatures at both early and late processing stages. Highlights We studied the neural signatures of the automatic processes of visual attention elicited by Gestalt stimuli. We found that a reliable early correlate of attentional capture turned out to be the N2pc component. Perceptual and cognitive processing of Gestalt stimuli is associated with larger N1, N2, and P3 PMID:27630555

  16. Gestalt Perceptual Organization of Visual Stimuli Captures Attention Automatically: Electrophysiological Evidence.

    PubMed

    Marini, Francesco; Marzi, Carlo A

    2016-01-01

    The visual system leverages organizational regularities of perceptual elements to create meaningful representations of the world. One clear example of such function, which has been formalized in the Gestalt psychology principles, is the perceptual grouping of simple visual elements (e.g., lines and arcs) into unitary objects (e.g., forms and shapes). The present study sought to characterize automatic attentional capture and related cognitive processing of Gestalt-like visual stimuli at the psychophysiological level by using event-related potentials (ERPs). We measured ERPs during a simple visual reaction time task with bilateral presentations of physically matched elements with or without a Gestalt organization. Results showed that Gestalt (vs. non-Gestalt) stimuli are characterized by a larger N2pc together with enhanced ERP amplitudes of non-lateralized components (N1, N2, P3) starting around 150 ms post-stimulus onset. Thus, we conclude that Gestalt stimuli capture attention automatically and entail characteristic psychophysiological signatures at both early and late processing stages. Highlights We studied the neural signatures of the automatic processes of visual attention elicited by Gestalt stimuli. We found that a reliable early correlate of attentional capture turned out to be the N2pc component. Perceptual and cognitive processing of Gestalt stimuli is associated with larger N1, N2, and P3.

  17. Gestalt Perceptual Organization of Visual Stimuli Captures Attention Automatically: Electrophysiological Evidence

    PubMed Central

    Marini, Francesco; Marzi, Carlo A.

    2016-01-01

    The visual system leverages organizational regularities of perceptual elements to create meaningful representations of the world. One clear example of such function, which has been formalized in the Gestalt psychology principles, is the perceptual grouping of simple visual elements (e.g., lines and arcs) into unitary objects (e.g., forms and shapes). The present study sought to characterize automatic attentional capture and related cognitive processing of Gestalt-like visual stimuli at the psychophysiological level by using event-related potentials (ERPs). We measured ERPs during a simple visual reaction time task with bilateral presentations of physically matched elements with or without a Gestalt organization. Results showed that Gestalt (vs. non-Gestalt) stimuli are characterized by a larger N2pc together with enhanced ERP amplitudes of non-lateralized components (N1, N2, P3) starting around 150 ms post-stimulus onset. Thus, we conclude that Gestalt stimuli capture attention automatically and entail characteristic psychophysiological signatures at both early and late processing stages. Highlights We studied the neural signatures of the automatic processes of visual attention elicited by Gestalt stimuli. We found that a reliable early correlate of attentional capture turned out to be the N2pc component. Perceptual and cognitive processing of Gestalt stimuli is associated with larger N1, N2, and P3

  18. Gestalt Perceptual Organization of Visual Stimuli Captures Attention Automatically: Electrophysiological Evidence.

    PubMed

    Marini, Francesco; Marzi, Carlo A

    2016-01-01

    The visual system leverages organizational regularities of perceptual elements to create meaningful representations of the world. One clear example of such function, which has been formalized in the Gestalt psychology principles, is the perceptual grouping of simple visual elements (e.g., lines and arcs) into unitary objects (e.g., forms and shapes). The present study sought to characterize automatic attentional capture and related cognitive processing of Gestalt-like visual stimuli at the psychophysiological level by using event-related potentials (ERPs). We measured ERPs during a simple visual reaction time task with bilateral presentations of physically matched elements with or without a Gestalt organization. Results showed that Gestalt (vs. non-Gestalt) stimuli are characterized by a larger N2pc together with enhanced ERP amplitudes of non-lateralized components (N1, N2, P3) starting around 150 ms post-stimulus onset. Thus, we conclude that Gestalt stimuli capture attention automatically and entail characteristic psychophysiological signatures at both early and late processing stages. Highlights We studied the neural signatures of the automatic processes of visual attention elicited by Gestalt stimuli. We found that a reliable early correlate of attentional capture turned out to be the N2pc component. Perceptual and cognitive processing of Gestalt stimuli is associated with larger N1, N2, and P3. PMID:27630555

  19. The Floor Projection Maze: A novel behavioral apparatus for presenting visual stimuli to rats

    PubMed Central

    Furtak, Sharon C.; Cho, Christine E.; Kerr, Kristin M.; Barredo, Jennifer L.; Alleyne, Janelle E.; Patterson, Yolanda R.; Burwell, Rebecca D.

    2010-01-01

    There is a long tradition of studying visual learning in rats by presenting stimuli vertically on cards or monitors. The procedures are often labor intensive and the rate of acquisition can be prohibitively low. Available evidence suggests that rats process visual information presented in the lower visual hemifield more effectively than information presented in the upper visual hemifield. We capitalized on these findings by developing a novel apparatus, the Floor Projection Maze, for presenting visual information directly to the floor of an exploratory maze. Two-dimensional (2D) visual stimuli were presented on the floor by back-projecting an image from a standard digital projector to the semi-transparent underside of the floor of an open maze. Long-Evans rats rapidly acquired easy 2D visual discriminations (Experiment 1). Rats were also able to learn a more difficult shape discrimination in dramatically fewer trials than previously reported for the same discrimination when presented vertically (Experiment 2). The two choice discrimination task was adapted to determine contrast sensitivity thresholds in a naïve group of rats (Experiment 3). Contrast sensitivity thresholds were uniform across three subjects, demonstrating that the Floor Projection Maze can be used for visual psychophysics in rats. Our findings demonstrate that rats can rapidly acquire visual tasks when stimuli are presented horizontally on the floor, suggesting that this novel behavioral apparatus will provide a powerful behavioral paradigm in the future. PMID:19422855

  20. Cognitive workload modulation through degraded visual stimuli: a single-trial EEG study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yu, K.; Prasad, I.; Mir, H.; Thakor, N.; Al-Nashash, H.

    2015-08-01

    Objective. Our experiments explored the effect of visual stimuli degradation on cognitive workload. Approach. We investigated the subjective assessment, event-related potentials (ERPs) as well as electroencephalogram (EEG) as measures of cognitive workload. Main results. These experiments confirm that degradation of visual stimuli increases cognitive workload as assessed by subjective NASA task load index and confirmed by the observed P300 amplitude attenuation. Furthermore, the single-trial multi-level classification using features extracted from ERPs and EEG is found to be promising. Specifically, the adopted single-trial oscillatory EEG/ERP detection method achieved an average accuracy of 85% for discriminating 4 workload levels. Additionally, we found from the spatial patterns obtained from EEG signals that the frontal parts carry information that can be used for differentiating workload levels. Significance. Our results show that visual stimuli can modulate cognitive workload, and the modulation can be measured by the single trial EEG/ERP detection method.

  1. The Role of Visual Eccentricity on Preference for Abstract Symmetry.

    PubMed

    Rampone, Giulia; O' Sullivan, Noreen; Bertamini, Marco

    2016-01-01

    This study tested preference for abstract patterns, comparing random patterns to a two-fold bilateral symmetry. Stimuli were presented at random locations in the periphery. Preference for bilateral symmetry has been extensively studied in central vision, but evaluation at different locations had not been systematically investigated. Patterns were presented for 200 ms within a large circular region. On each trial participant changed fixation and were instructed to select any location. Eccentricity values were calculated a posteriori as the distance between ocular coordinates at pattern onset and coordinates for the centre of the pattern. Experiment 1 consisted of two Tasks. In Task 1, participants detected pattern regularity as fast as possible. In Task 2 they evaluated their liking for the pattern on a Likert-scale. Results from Task 1 revealed that with our parameters eccentricity did not affect symmetry detection. However, in Task 2, eccentricity predicted more negative evaluation of symmetry, but not random patterns. In Experiment 2 participants were either presented with symmetry or random patterns. Regularity was task-irrelevant in this task. Participants discriminated the proportion of black/white dots within the pattern and then evaluated their liking for the pattern. Even when only one type of regularity was presented and regularity was task-irrelevant, preference evaluation for symmetry decreased with increasing eccentricity, whereas eccentricity did not affect the evaluation of random patterns. We conclude that symmetry appreciation is higher for foveal presentation in a way not fully accounted for by sensitivity.

  2. The Role of Visual Eccentricity on Preference for Abstract Symmetry

    PubMed Central

    O’ Sullivan, Noreen; Bertamini, Marco

    2016-01-01

    This study tested preference for abstract patterns, comparing random patterns to a two-fold bilateral symmetry. Stimuli were presented at random locations in the periphery. Preference for bilateral symmetry has been extensively studied in central vision, but evaluation at different locations had not been systematically investigated. Patterns were presented for 200 ms within a large circular region. On each trial participant changed fixation and were instructed to select any location. Eccentricity values were calculated a posteriori as the distance between ocular coordinates at pattern onset and coordinates for the centre of the pattern. Experiment 1 consisted of two Tasks. In Task 1, participants detected pattern regularity as fast as possible. In Task 2 they evaluated their liking for the pattern on a Likert-scale. Results from Task 1 revealed that with our parameters eccentricity did not affect symmetry detection. However, in Task 2, eccentricity predicted more negative evaluation of symmetry, but not random patterns. In Experiment 2 participants were either presented with symmetry or random patterns. Regularity was task-irrelevant in this task. Participants discriminated the proportion of black/white dots within the pattern and then evaluated their liking for the pattern. Even when only one type of regularity was presented and regularity was task-irrelevant, preference evaluation for symmetry decreased with increasing eccentricity, whereas eccentricity did not affect the evaluation of random patterns. We conclude that symmetry appreciation is higher for foveal presentation in a way not fully accounted for by sensitivity. PMID:27124081

  3. Modulation of Temporal Precision in Thalamic Population Responses to Natural Visual Stimuli

    PubMed Central

    Desbordes, Gaëlle; Jin, Jianzhong; Alonso, Jose-Manuel; Stanley, Garrett B.

    2010-01-01

    Natural visual stimuli have highly structured spatial and temporal properties which influence the way visual information is encoded in the visual pathway. In response to natural scene stimuli, neurons in the lateral geniculate nucleus (LGN) are temporally precise – on a time scale of 10–25 ms – both within single cells and across cells within a population. This time scale, established by non stimulus-driven elements of neuronal firing, is significantly shorter than that of natural scenes, yet is critical for the neural representation of the spatial and temporal structure of the scene. Here, a generalized linear model (GLM) that combines stimulus-driven elements with spike-history dependence associated with intrinsic cellular dynamics is shown to predict the fine timing precision of LGN responses to natural scene stimuli, the corresponding correlation structure across nearby neurons in the population, and the continuous modulation of spike timing precision and latency across neurons. A single model captured the experimentally observed neural response, across different levels of contrasts and different classes of visual stimuli, through interactions between the stimulus correlation structure and the nonlinearity in spike generation and spike history dependence. Given the sensitivity of the thalamocortical synapse to closely timed spikes and the importance of fine timing precision for the faithful representation of natural scenes, the modulation of thalamic population timing over these time scales is likely important for cortical representations of the dynamic natural visual environment. PMID:21151356

  4. Early Preferential Responses to Fear Stimuli in Human Right Dorsal Visual Stream--A Meg Study.

    PubMed

    Meeren, Hanneke K M; Hadjikhani, Nouchine; Ahlfors, Seppo P; Hämäläinen, Matti S; de Gelder, Beatrice

    2016-04-20

    Emotional expressions of others are salient biological stimuli that automatically capture attention and prepare us for action. We investigated the early cortical dynamics of automatic visual discrimination of fearful body expressions by monitoring cortical activity using magnetoencephalography. We show that right parietal cortex distinguishes between fearful and neutral bodies as early as 80-ms after stimulus onset, providing the first evidence for a fast emotion-attention-action link through human dorsal visual stream.

  5. Crossmodal Statistical Binding of Temporal Information and Stimuli Properties Recalibrates Perception of Visual Apparent Motion.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yi; Chen, Lihan

    2016-01-01

    Recent studies of brain plasticity that pertain to time perception have shown that fast training of temporal discrimination in one modality, for example, the auditory modality, can improve performance of temporal discrimination in another modality, such as the visual modality. We here examined whether the perception of visual Ternus motion could be recalibrated through fast crossmodal statistical binding of temporal information and stimuli properties binding. We conducted two experiments, composed of three sessions each: pre-test, learning, and post-test. In both the pre-test and the post-test, participants classified the Ternus display as either "element motion" or "group motion." For the training session in Experiment 1, we constructed two types of temporal structures, in which two consecutively presented sound beeps were dominantly (80%) flanked by one leading visual Ternus frame and by one lagging visual Ternus frame (VAAV) or dominantly inserted by two Ternus visual frames (AVVA). Participants were required to respond which interval (auditory vs. visual) was longer. In Experiment 2, we presented only a single auditory-visual pair but with similar temporal configurations as in Experiment 1, and asked participants to perform an audio-visual temporal order judgment. The results of these two experiments support that statistical binding of temporal information and stimuli properties can quickly and selectively recalibrate the sensitivity of perceiving visual motion, according to the protocols of the specific bindings. PMID:27065910

  6. What’s Coming Near? The Influence of Dynamical Visual Stimuli on Nociceptive Processing

    PubMed Central

    De Paepe, Annick L.; Crombez, Geert; Legrain, Valéry

    2016-01-01

    Objects approaching us may pose a threat, and signal the need to initiate defensive behavior. Detecting these objects early is crucial to either avoid the object or prepare for contact most efficiently. This requires the construction of a coherent representation of our body, and the space closely surrounding our body, i.e. the peripersonal space. This study, with 27 healthy volunteers, investigated how the processing of nociceptive stimuli applied to the hand is influenced by dynamical visual stimuli either approaching or receding from the hand. On each trial a visual stimulus was either approaching or receding the participant’s left or right hand. At different temporal delays from the onset of the visual stimulus, a nociceptive stimulus was applied either at the same or the opposite hand, so that it was presented when the visual stimulus was perceived at varying distances from the hand. Participants were asked to respond as fast as possible at which side they perceived a nociceptive stimulus. We found that reaction times were fastest when the visual stimulus appeared near the stimulated hand. Moreover, investigating the influence of the visual stimuli along the continuous spatial range (from near to far) showed that approaching lights had a stronger spatially dependent effect on nociceptive processing, compared to receding lights. These results suggest that the coding of nociceptive information in a peripersonal frame of reference may constitute a safety margin around the body that is designed to protect it from potential physical threat. PMID:27224421

  7. What's Coming Near? The Influence of Dynamical Visual Stimuli on Nociceptive Processing.

    PubMed

    De Paepe, Annick L; Crombez, Geert; Legrain, Valéry

    2016-01-01

    Objects approaching us may pose a threat, and signal the need to initiate defensive behavior. Detecting these objects early is crucial to either avoid the object or prepare for contact most efficiently. This requires the construction of a coherent representation of our body, and the space closely surrounding our body, i.e. the peripersonal space. This study, with 27 healthy volunteers, investigated how the processing of nociceptive stimuli applied to the hand is influenced by dynamical visual stimuli either approaching or receding from the hand. On each trial a visual stimulus was either approaching or receding the participant's left or right hand. At different temporal delays from the onset of the visual stimulus, a nociceptive stimulus was applied either at the same or the opposite hand, so that it was presented when the visual stimulus was perceived at varying distances from the hand. Participants were asked to respond as fast as possible at which side they perceived a nociceptive stimulus. We found that reaction times were fastest when the visual stimulus appeared near the stimulated hand. Moreover, investigating the influence of the visual stimuli along the continuous spatial range (from near to far) showed that approaching lights had a stronger spatially dependent effect on nociceptive processing, compared to receding lights. These results suggest that the coding of nociceptive information in a peripersonal frame of reference may constitute a safety margin around the body that is designed to protect it from potential physical threat. PMID:27224421

  8. Sensory Symptoms and Processing of Nonverbal Auditory and Visual Stimuli in Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stewart, Claire R.; Sanchez, Sandra S.; Grenesko, Emily L.; Brown, Christine M.; Chen, Colleen P.; Keehn, Brandon; Velasquez, Francisco; Lincoln, Alan J.; Müller, Ralph-Axel

    2016-01-01

    Atypical sensory responses are common in autism spectrum disorder (ASD). While evidence suggests impaired auditory-visual integration for verbal information, findings for nonverbal stimuli are inconsistent. We tested for sensory symptoms in children with ASD (using the Adolescent/Adult Sensory Profile) and examined unisensory and bisensory…

  9. Motivationally Significant Stimuli Show Visual Prior Entry: Evidence for Attentional Capture

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    West, Greg L.; Anderson, Adam A. K.; Pratt, Jay

    2009-01-01

    Previous studies that have found attentional capture effects for stimuli of motivational significance do not directly measure initial attentional deployment, leaving it unclear to what extent these items produce attentional capture. Visual prior entry, as measured by temporal order judgments (TOJs), rests on the premise that allocated attention…

  10. Compiler Optimization Pass Visualization: The Procedural Abstraction Case

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schaeckeler, Stefan; Shang, Weijia; Davis, Ruth

    2009-01-01

    There is an active research community concentrating on visualizations of algorithms taught in CS1 and CS2 courses. These visualizations can help students to create concrete visual images of the algorithms and their underlying concepts. Not only "fundamental algorithms" can be visualized, but also algorithms used in compilers. Visualizations that…

  11. Spatial decoupling of targets and flashing stimuli for visual brain-computer interfaces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Waytowich, Nicholas R.; Krusienski, Dean J.

    2015-06-01

    Objective. Recently, paradigms using code-modulated visual evoked potentials (c-VEPs) have proven to achieve among the highest information transfer rates for noninvasive brain-computer interfaces (BCIs). One issue with current c-VEP paradigms, and visual-evoked paradigms in general, is that they require direct foveal fixation of the flashing stimuli. These interfaces are often visually unpleasant and can be irritating and fatiguing to the user, thus adversely impacting practical performance. In this study, a novel c-VEP BCI paradigm is presented that attempts to perform spatial decoupling of the targets and flashing stimuli using two distinct concepts: spatial separation and boundary positioning. Approach. For the paradigm, the flashing stimuli form a ring that encompasses the intended non-flashing targets, which are spatially separated from the stimuli. The user fixates on the desired target, which is classified using the changes to the EEG induced by the flashing stimuli located in the non-foveal visual field. Additionally, a subset of targets is also positioned at or near the stimulus boundaries, which decouples targets from direct association with a single stimulus. This allows a greater number of target locations for a fixed number of flashing stimuli. Main results. Results from 11 subjects showed practical classification accuracies for the non-foveal condition, with comparable performance to the direct-foveal condition for longer observation lengths. Online results from 5 subjects confirmed the offline results with an average accuracy across subjects of 95.6% for a 4-target condition. The offline analysis also indicated that targets positioned at or near the boundaries of two stimuli could be classified with the same accuracy as traditional superimposed (non-boundary) targets. Significance. The implications of this research are that c-VEPs can be detected and accurately classified to achieve comparable BCI performance without requiring potentially irritating

  12. EEG responses to visual erotic stimuli in men with normal and paraphilic interests.

    PubMed

    Waismann, Rogeria; Fenwick, Peter B C; Wilson, Glenn D; Hewett, Terry D; Lumsden, John

    2003-04-01

    Contingent negative variation and evoked potentials to visual erotic stimuli were recorded from 8 brain sites in a sample of 62 right-handed men aged 20-50, half of whom declared paraphilic interests and half claimed "normal" heterosexual interests. To quantify erotic preferences, a "variance quotient" (VQ) was calculated from scores on the Wilson Sex Fantasy Questionnaire using the formula VQ = Impersonal + Sadomasochistic fantasies/Intimate + Exploratory fantasies. Stimuli consisted of 57 paraphilic slides (depicting fetishistic and sadomasochistic themes), 57 heterosexual erotic slides (explicit pictures of nude women, coitus, and oral sex), and 57 neutral slides (landscapes and street scenes). The P600 response appeared to be the best indicator of erotic preferences, butthe locus of maximum arousal was different for paraphilic and heterosexual stimuli. The primary brain site for heterosexual arousal was P4 (right parietal), where there was a -.34 (p < .01) correlation between VQ and P600 (i.e., nonvariant males showed greater responses to normal erotic stimuli at this location). For paraphilic stimuli, there was a correlation of .26 (p < .05) between the VQ and P600 response at the F3 (left frontal) site (i.e., paraphilic men showed greater responses to paraphilic stimuli than normal men at this brain location). Dividing the sample into groups of 23 paraphilics and 23 heterosexual controls on the basis of their VQs showed that "normals" differentiated between stimulus types more at the P4 than paraphilics. Theoretical and clinical implications of these findings are discussed.

  13. An fMRI Study Of The Perception Of Noisy Visual Stimuli

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Simonotto, E.; Spanó, F.; Riani, M.; Ferrari, A.; Levrero, F.; Pilot, A.; Vitali, P.; Parodi, R. C.; Renzetti, P.; Sardanelli, F.; Twitty, J.; Moss, F.

    1998-03-01

    We have demonstrated that Stochastic Resonance can be used as a tool to quantify the ability of human observers to detect details in a noisy visual stimulation(E. Simonotto, et al., Phys. Rev. Lett.) 78, 1186 (1997). This technique gives consistently reproducible results and allows a quantitative comparison between different subjects. We have begun fMRI studies to investigate the underlying processes used by the visual system to extract information from noisy visual stimulations. Healthy human observers in a MRI scanner are presented animations treated with and without the addition of noise and threshold filtering. The functional areas activated during the noisy visual stimulation are compared to the case of noiseless visual stimuli. Preliminary results will be given.

  14. Women's interest in visual sexual stimuli varies with menstrual cycle phase at first exposure and predicts later interest.

    PubMed

    Wallen, Kim; Rupp, Heather A

    2010-02-01

    This study investigated whether women's interest in visual sexual stimuli varied with their hormonal state. Viewing times of 30 women, 15 normal cycling (NC) and 15 oral contracepting (OC), to sexually explicit photos were measured at three different times. NC women were tested during their menstrual, periovulatory, and luteal phases, and OC women were tested at equivalent temporal intervals. Subjects viewed stimuli as long as desired, thus viewing time measured subject interest. Subjective ratings of stimulus sexual attractiveness were obtained on each test. There was no overall relationship between menstrual cycle phase and viewing time. However the participant's menstrual cycle phase during first exposure to sexual stimuli predicted subsequent interest in sexual stimuli during the next two tests. NC women who first viewed stimuli during their periovulatory phase looked longer at the sexual stimuli across all sessions than did women first tested in their luteal phase. OC women first exposed to the sexual stimuli during menstruation looked longer at the stimuli across all sessions than did OC women first exposed at other test phases. Neither current test phase nor initial cycle phase influenced subjective ratings. Women had increased interest in sexual stimuli across all sessions if first exposed to sexual stimuli when endogenous estrogens were most likely highest. These data suggest that women's interest in visual sexual stimuli is modulated by hormones such that the hormonal condition at first exposure possibly determines the stimuli's emotional valence, markedly affecting subsequent interest in sexual stimuli. PMID:20034495

  15. Metabolic response to optic centers to visual stimuli in the albino rat: anatomical and physiological considerations

    SciTech Connect

    Toga, A.W.; Collins, R.C.

    1981-07-10

    The functional organization of the visual system was studied in the albino rat. Metabolic differences were measured using the /sup 14/C-2-deoxyglucose (DG) autoradiographic technique during visual stimulation of one entire retina in unrestrained animals. All optic centers responded to changes in light intensity but to different degrees. The greatest change occurred in the superior colliculus, less in the lateral geniculate, and considerably less in second-order sites such as layer IV of visual cortex. These optic centers responded in particular to on/off stimuli, but showed no incremental change during pattern reversal or movement of orientation stimuli. Both the superior colliculus and lateral geniculate increased their metabolic rate as the frequency of stimulation increased, but the magnitude was twice as great in the colliculus. The histological pattern of metabolic change in the visual system was not homogenous. In the superior colliculus glucose utilization increased only in stratum griseum superficiale and was greatest in visuotopic regions representing the peripheral portions of the visual field. Similarly, in the lateral geniculate, only the dorsal nucleus showed an increased response to greater stimulus frequencies. Second-order regions of the visual system showed changes in metabolism in response to visual stimulation, but no incremental response specific for type or frequency of stimuli. To label proteins of axoplasmic transport to study the terminal fields of retinal projections /sup 14/C-amino acids were used. This was done to study how the differences in the magnitude of the metabolic response among optic centers were related to the relative quantity of retinofugal projections to these centers.

  16. Visual speech discrimination and identification of natural and synthetic consonant stimuli

    PubMed Central

    Files, Benjamin T.; Tjan, Bosco S.; Jiang, Jintao; Bernstein, Lynne E.

    2015-01-01

    From phonetic features to connected discourse, every level of psycholinguistic structure including prosody can be perceived through viewing the talking face. Yet a longstanding notion in the literature is that visual speech perceptual categories comprise groups of phonemes (referred to as visemes), such as /p, b, m/ and /f, v/, whose internal structure is not informative to the visual speech perceiver. This conclusion has not to our knowledge been evaluated using a psychophysical discrimination paradigm. We hypothesized that perceivers can discriminate the phonemes within typical viseme groups, and that discrimination measured with d-prime (d’) and response latency is related to visual stimulus dissimilarities between consonant segments. In Experiment 1, participants performed speeded discrimination for pairs of consonant-vowel spoken nonsense syllables that were predicted to be same, near, or far in their perceptual distances, and that were presented as natural or synthesized video. Near pairs were within-viseme consonants. Natural within-viseme stimulus pairs were discriminated significantly above chance (except for /k/-/h/). Sensitivity (d’) increased and response times decreased with distance. Discrimination and identification were superior with natural stimuli, which comprised more phonetic information. We suggest that the notion of the viseme as a unitary perceptual category is incorrect. Experiment 2 probed the perceptual basis for visual speech discrimination by inverting the stimuli. Overall reductions in d’ with inverted stimuli but a persistent pattern of larger d’ for far than for near stimulus pairs are interpreted as evidence that visual speech is represented by both its motion and configural attributes. The methods and results of this investigation open up avenues for understanding the neural and perceptual bases for visual and audiovisual speech perception and for development of practical applications such as visual lipreading

  17. [Changes in emotional response to visual stimuli with sexual content in drug abusers].

    PubMed

    Aguilar de Arcos, Francisco; Verdejo Garcia, Antonio; Lopez Jimenez, Angeles; Montañez Pareja, Matilde; Gomez Juarez, Encarnacion; Arraez Sanchez, Francisco; Perez Garcia, Miguel

    2008-01-01

    In a phenomenon as complex as drug dependence there is no doubt that affective and emotional aspects are involved. However, there has been little research to date on these emotional aspects, especially in specific relation to everyday affective stimuli, unrelated to drug use. In this work we investigate whether the consumption of narcotic substances causes changes in the emotional response to powerful unconditional natural stimuli, such as those of a sexual nature. To this end, I.A.P.S. images with explicit erotic content were shown to 84 drug-dependent males, in separate groups according to preferred substance. These groups' results were compared with each other and with the values obtained by non-consumers. The results indicate that drug abusers respond differently to visual stimuli with erotic content compared to non-consumers, and that there are also differences in response among consumers according to preferred substance. PMID:18551224

  18. Abstract numeric relations and the visual structure of algebra.

    PubMed

    Landy, David; Brookes, David; Smout, Ryan

    2014-09-01

    Formal algebras are among the most powerful and general mechanisms for expressing quantitative relational statements; yet, even university engineering students, who are relatively proficient with algebraic manipulation, struggle with and often fail to correctly deploy basic aspects of algebraic notation (Clement, 1982). In the cognitive tradition, it has often been assumed that skilled users of these formalisms treat situations in terms of semantic properties encoded in an abstract syntax that governs the use of notation without particular regard to the details of the physical structure of the equation itself (Anderson, 2005; Hegarty, Mayer, & Monk, 1995). We explore how the notational structure of verbal descriptions or algebraic equations (e.g., the spatial proximity of certain words or the visual alignment of numbers and symbols in an equation) plays a role in the process of interpreting or constructing symbolic equations. We propose in particular that construction processes involve an alignment of notational structures across representation systems, biasing reasoners toward the selection of formal notations that maintain the visuospatial structure of source representations. For example, in the statement "There are 5 elephants for every 3 rhinoceroses," the spatial proximity of 5 and elephants and 3 and rhinoceroses will bias reasoners to write the incorrect expression 5E = 3R, because that expression maintains the spatial relationships encoded in the source representation. In 3 experiments, participants constructed equations with given structure, based on story problems with a variety of phrasings. We demonstrate how the notational alignment approach accounts naturally for a variety of previously reported phenomena in equation construction and successfully predicts error patterns that are not accounted for by prior explanations, such as the left to right transcription heuristic.

  19. The effects of visual stimuli on EEG mu rhythms in healthy adults

    PubMed Central

    Kim, JiYoung; Kim, SeongYoel

    2016-01-01

    [Purpose] Several action observation/imagery training studies have been conducted in patients with limited physical activity showing improvements in motor function. However, most studies compared effects of action observation and imagery, so little is known about the changes caused by subsequent observation of target objects. Moreover, few studies analyzed brain wave changes in the EEG mu rhythm. [Subjects and Methods] Eighteen healthy female adults participated in this study, and were divided into two groups: ‘Visual Stimuli’ and ‘Non-Visual Stimuli’. EEG amplitude in the 8–13 Hz frequency band over the sensorimotor cortex was evaluated. [Results] Significant mu suppression was obtained in the action observation trials. Mu power showed a main effect of visual stimuli, with decreased power during action observation, and increased power post-observation in both conditions. Comparing the ‘Visual Stimuli’ and ‘Non-Visual Stimuli’ conditions during the post-observation period, mu power demonstrated a greater increase in the ‘Non-Visual Stimuli’ condition. Furthermore, mu power was lower post-observation than pre-observation. [Conclusion] These results show the effects of visual input between maintaining target objects and no visual input, and their relevance to modulations of the mirror neuron system. It also suggests that greater visual input may be more effective for cognitive rehabilitation. PMID:27390408

  20. Affective Overload: The Effect of Emotive Visual Stimuli on Target Vocabulary Retrieval.

    PubMed

    Çetin, Yakup; Griffiths, Carol; Özel, Zeynep Ebrar Yetkiner; Kinay, Hüseyin

    2016-04-01

    There has been considerable interest in cognitive load in recent years, but the effect of affective load and its relationship to mental functioning has not received as much attention. In order to investigate the effects of affective stimuli on cognitive function as manifest in the ability to remember foreign language vocabulary, two groups of student volunteers (N = 64) aged from 17 to 25 years were shown a Powerpoint presentation of 21 target language words with a picture, audio, and written form for every word. The vocabulary was presented in comfortable rooms with padded chairs and the participants were provided with snacks so that they would be comfortable and relaxed. After the Powerpoint they were exposed to two forms of visual stimuli for 27 min. The different formats contained either visually affective content (sexually suggestive, violent or frightening material) or neutral content (a nature documentary). The group which was exposed to the emotive visual stimuli remembered significantly fewer words than the group which watched the emotively neutral nature documentary. Implications of this finding are discussed and suggestions made for ongoing research.

  1. Brain activation by visual erotic stimuli in healthy middle aged males.

    PubMed

    Kim, S W; Sohn, D W; Cho, Y-H; Yang, W S; Lee, K-U; Juh, R; Ahn, K-J; Chung, Y-A; Han, S-I; Lee, K H; Lee, C U; Chae, J-H

    2006-01-01

    The objective of the present study was to identify brain centers, whose activity changes are related to erotic visual stimuli in healthy, heterosexual, middle aged males. Ten heterosexual, right-handed males with normal sexual function were entered into the present study (mean age 52 years, range 46-55). All potential subjects were screened over 1 h interview, and were encouraged to fill out questionnaires including the Brief Male Sexual Function Inventory. All subjects with a history of sexual arousal disorder or erectile dysfunction were excluded. We performed functional brain magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) in male volunteers when an alternatively combined erotic and nonerotic film was played for 14 min and 9 s. The major areas of activation associated with sexual arousal to visual stimuli were occipitotemporal area, anterior cingulate gyrus, insula, orbitofrontal cortex, caudate nucleus. However, hypothalamus and thalamus were not activated. We suggest that the nonactivation of hypothalamus and thalamus in middle aged males may be responsible for the lesser physiological arousal in response to the erotic visual stimuli. PMID:16467858

  2. Affective Overload: The Effect of Emotive Visual Stimuli on Target Vocabulary Retrieval.

    PubMed

    Çetin, Yakup; Griffiths, Carol; Özel, Zeynep Ebrar Yetkiner; Kinay, Hüseyin

    2016-04-01

    There has been considerable interest in cognitive load in recent years, but the effect of affective load and its relationship to mental functioning has not received as much attention. In order to investigate the effects of affective stimuli on cognitive function as manifest in the ability to remember foreign language vocabulary, two groups of student volunteers (N = 64) aged from 17 to 25 years were shown a Powerpoint presentation of 21 target language words with a picture, audio, and written form for every word. The vocabulary was presented in comfortable rooms with padded chairs and the participants were provided with snacks so that they would be comfortable and relaxed. After the Powerpoint they were exposed to two forms of visual stimuli for 27 min. The different formats contained either visually affective content (sexually suggestive, violent or frightening material) or neutral content (a nature documentary). The group which was exposed to the emotive visual stimuli remembered significantly fewer words than the group which watched the emotively neutral nature documentary. Implications of this finding are discussed and suggestions made for ongoing research. PMID:25487113

  3. Visual stimuli that elicit appetitive behaviors in three morphologically distinct species of praying mantis.

    PubMed

    Prete, Frederick R; Komito, Justin L; Dominguez, Salina; Svenson, Gavin; López, LeoLin Y; Guillen, Alex; Bogdanivich, Nicole

    2011-09-01

    We assessed the differences in appetitive responses to visual stimuli by three species of praying mantis (Insecta: Mantodea), Tenodera aridifolia sinensis, Mantis religiosa, and Cilnia humeralis. Tethered, adult females watched computer generated stimuli (erratically moving disks or linearly moving rectangles) that varied along predetermined parameters. Three responses were scored: tracking, approaching, and striking. Threshold stimulus size (diameter) for tracking and striking at disks ranged from 3.5 deg (C. humeralis) to 7.8 deg (M. religiosa), and from 3.3 deg (C. humeralis) to 11.7 deg (M. religiosa), respectively. Unlike the other species which struck at disks as large as 44 deg, T. a. sinensis displayed a preference for 14 deg disks. Disks moving at 143 deg/s were preferred by all species. M. religiosa exhibited the most approaching behavior, and with T. a. sinensis distinguished between rectangular stimuli moving parallel versus perpendicular to their long axes. C. humeralis did not make this distinction. Stimulus sizes that elicited the target behaviors were not related to mantis size. However, differences in compound eye morphology may be related to species differences: C. humeralis' eyes are farthest apart, and it has an apparently narrower binocular visual field which may affect retinal inputs to movement-sensitive visual interneurons. PMID:21553126

  4. Space-time visual analytics of eye-tracking data for dynamic stimuli.

    PubMed

    Kurzhals, Kuno; Weiskopf, Daniel

    2013-12-01

    We introduce a visual analytics method to analyze eye movement data recorded for dynamic stimuli such as video or animated graphics. The focus lies on the analysis of data of several viewers to identify trends in the general viewing behavior, including time sequences of attentional synchrony and objects with strong attentional focus. By using a space-time cube visualization in combination with clustering, the dynamic stimuli and associated eye gazes can be analyzed in a static 3D representation. Shotbased, spatiotemporal clustering of the data generates potential areas of interest that can be filtered interactively. We also facilitate data drill-down: the gaze points are shown with density-based color mapping and individual scan paths as lines in the space-time cube. The analytical process is supported by multiple coordinated views that allow the user to focus on different aspects of spatial and temporal information in eye gaze data. Common eye-tracking visualization techniques are extended to incorporate the spatiotemporal characteristics of the data. For example, heat maps are extended to motion-compensated heat maps and trajectories of scan paths are included in the space-time visualization. Our visual analytics approach is assessed in a qualitative users study with expert users, which showed the usefulness of the approach and uncovered that the experts applied different analysis strategies supported by the system. PMID:24051779

  5. Space-time visual analytics of eye-tracking data for dynamic stimuli.

    PubMed

    Kurzhals, Kuno; Weiskopf, Daniel

    2013-12-01

    We introduce a visual analytics method to analyze eye movement data recorded for dynamic stimuli such as video or animated graphics. The focus lies on the analysis of data of several viewers to identify trends in the general viewing behavior, including time sequences of attentional synchrony and objects with strong attentional focus. By using a space-time cube visualization in combination with clustering, the dynamic stimuli and associated eye gazes can be analyzed in a static 3D representation. Shotbased, spatiotemporal clustering of the data generates potential areas of interest that can be filtered interactively. We also facilitate data drill-down: the gaze points are shown with density-based color mapping and individual scan paths as lines in the space-time cube. The analytical process is supported by multiple coordinated views that allow the user to focus on different aspects of spatial and temporal information in eye gaze data. Common eye-tracking visualization techniques are extended to incorporate the spatiotemporal characteristics of the data. For example, heat maps are extended to motion-compensated heat maps and trajectories of scan paths are included in the space-time visualization. Our visual analytics approach is assessed in a qualitative users study with expert users, which showed the usefulness of the approach and uncovered that the experts applied different analysis strategies supported by the system.

  6. Paths with more turns are perceived as longer: misperceptions with map-based and abstracted path stimuli.

    PubMed

    Brunyé, Tad T; Mahoney, Caroline R; Taylor, Holly A

    2015-04-01

    When navigating, people tend to overestimate distances when routes contain more turns, termed the route-angularity effect. Three experiments examined the source and generality of this effect. The first two experiments examined whether route-angularity effects occur while viewing maps and might be related to sex differences or sense of direction. The third experiment tested whether the route-angularity effect would occur with stimuli devoid of spatial context, reducing influences of environmental experience and visual complexity. In the three experiments, participants (N=1,552; M=32.2 yr.; 992 men, 560 women) viewed paths plotted on maps (Exps. 1 and 2) or against a blank background (Exp. 3). The depicted paths were always the same overall length, but varied in the number of turns (from 1 to 7) connecting an origin and destination. Participants were asked to estimate the time to traverse each path (Exp. 1) or the length of each path (Exps. 2 and 3). The Santa Barbara Sense of Direction questionnaire was administered to assess whether overall spatial sense of direction would be negatively related to the magnitude of the route-angularity effect. Repeated-measures analyses of variance (ANOVAs) indicated that paths with more turns elicited estimates of greater distance and travel times, whether they were depicted on maps or blank backgrounds. Linear regressions also indicated that these effects were significantly larger in those with a relatively low sense of direction. The results support the route-angularity effect and extend it to paths plotted on map-based stimuli. Furthermore, because the route-angularity effect was shown with paths plotted against blank backgrounds, route-angularity effects are not specific to understanding environments and may arise at the level of visual perception.

  7. Appetitive responses to computer-generated visual stimuli by the praying mantis Sphodromantis lineola (Burr.).

    PubMed

    Prete, F R; Mahaffey, R J

    1993-01-01

    Tethered adult female praying mantises, Sphodromantis lineola (Burr.), were presented with various computer-generated visual stimuli that moved against patterned or homogeneous white backgrounds in predetermined patterns and at predetermined speeds. The degrees to which the stimulus configurations elicited appetitive behaviors (attempting to approach and/or striking) indicated the relative degrees to which the stimuli were classified as prey. Mantises readily struck at cartoon "crickets" that subtended visual angles as great as 24.5 deg x 62.5 deg, but response rate was suppressed if the stimuli were superimposed on horizontally moving patterned backgrounds. Mantises also displayed appetitive behaviors to moving black squares (edge lengths = 10-47 deg) that moved in predetermined "erratic" paths; however, their response rates were affected by several factors: (1) response rate declined as edge length increased over 10 deg; (2) striking was emitted to stimuli viewed from 23 mm (but not farther) away; and (3) both stimulus displacement rate (distance moved between video frames) and apparent speed (video frame rate) dramatically affected the releasing strength of the stimuli. Finally, mantises responded appetitively to random dot patterns moving synchronously against identically patterned backgrounds and to pairs of black squares moving synchronously against a white background. However, in the latter case, response rate declined as the squares were moved farther apart horizontally or vertically. These and previous results from our laboratory on mantises are congruent with behavioral results obtained from other insects such as flies (Diptera) and dragon flies (Odonata) and suggest that there are neuroanatomical similarities between these groups. PMID:8338803

  8. Visual stimuli that elicit visual tracking, approaching and striking behavior from an unusual praying mantis, Euchomenella macrops (Insecta: Mantodea).

    PubMed

    Prete, Frederick R; Theis, Robert; Komito, Justin L; Dominguez, Jessica; Dominguez, Salina; Svenson, Gavin; Wieland, Frank

    2012-05-01

    In comparison to other similarly sized mantis species examined in previous studies, Euchomenella macrops has a significantly smaller head, shorter foreleg tibia, but longer prothorax which have been interpreted as specializations for the capture of smaller, slower prey. We tested this conjecture by assessing the rates at which computer generated stimuli elicit visual tracking, approaching, and striking behaviors by adult females. When presented with black disks moving erratically against a white background, strike rate rose progressively as disks enlarged up to 44 deg (visual angle) if the disks moved rapidly (e.g., 143 deg/s); at slower speeds (113, 127 deg/s), smaller disks (<27 deg) were preferred. When black moved linearly from the visual periphery to visual field center (at 73 or 143 deg/s) and then stopped, E. macrops struck consistently at disks as small as 5 deg after movement ceased. E. macrops also struck at higher rates in response to 23 deg erratically moving (subjective) red (versus subjective blue or green) disks that were luminance matched to a grey background although they tracked all colors at equally high rates. Unlike some other species, E. macrops did not strike at higher rates in response to elongated rectangular stimuli moving parallel (versus perpendicular) to their long axis, although the former elicited higher rates of approaching. An analysis of tracking behavior revealed that virtually all tracking movements were a result of head (versus) prothorax rotation. PMID:22342660

  9. Exploring combinations of auditory and visual stimuli for gaze-independent brain-computer interfaces.

    PubMed

    An, Xingwei; Höhne, Johannes; Ming, Dong; Blankertz, Benjamin

    2014-01-01

    For Brain-Computer Interface (BCI) systems that are designed for users with severe impairments of the oculomotor system, an appropriate mode of presenting stimuli to the user is crucial. To investigate whether multi-sensory integration can be exploited in the gaze-independent event-related potentials (ERP) speller and to enhance BCI performance, we designed a visual-auditory speller. We investigate the possibility to enhance stimulus presentation by combining visual and auditory stimuli within gaze-independent spellers. In this study with N = 15 healthy users, two different ways of combining the two sensory modalities are proposed: simultaneous redundant streams (Combined-Speller) and interleaved independent streams (Parallel-Speller). Unimodal stimuli were applied as control conditions. The workload, ERP components, classification accuracy and resulting spelling speed were analyzed for each condition. The Combined-speller showed a lower workload than uni-modal paradigms, without the sacrifice of spelling performance. Besides, shorter latencies, lower amplitudes, as well as a shift of the temporal and spatial distribution of discriminative information were observed for Combined-speller. These results are important and are inspirations for future studies to search the reason for these differences. For the more innovative and demanding Parallel-Speller, where the auditory and visual domains are independent from each other, a proof of concept was obtained: fifteen users could spell online with a mean accuracy of 87.7% (chance level <3%) showing a competitive average speed of 1.65 symbols per minute. The fact that it requires only one selection period per symbol makes it a good candidate for a fast communication channel. It brings a new insight into the true multisensory stimuli paradigms. Novel approaches for combining two sensory modalities were designed here, which are valuable for the development of ERP-based BCI paradigms. PMID:25350547

  10. Exploring combinations of auditory and visual stimuli for gaze-independent brain-computer interfaces.

    PubMed

    An, Xingwei; Höhne, Johannes; Ming, Dong; Blankertz, Benjamin

    2014-01-01

    For Brain-Computer Interface (BCI) systems that are designed for users with severe impairments of the oculomotor system, an appropriate mode of presenting stimuli to the user is crucial. To investigate whether multi-sensory integration can be exploited in the gaze-independent event-related potentials (ERP) speller and to enhance BCI performance, we designed a visual-auditory speller. We investigate the possibility to enhance stimulus presentation by combining visual and auditory stimuli within gaze-independent spellers. In this study with N = 15 healthy users, two different ways of combining the two sensory modalities are proposed: simultaneous redundant streams (Combined-Speller) and interleaved independent streams (Parallel-Speller). Unimodal stimuli were applied as control conditions. The workload, ERP components, classification accuracy and resulting spelling speed were analyzed for each condition. The Combined-speller showed a lower workload than uni-modal paradigms, without the sacrifice of spelling performance. Besides, shorter latencies, lower amplitudes, as well as a shift of the temporal and spatial distribution of discriminative information were observed for Combined-speller. These results are important and are inspirations for future studies to search the reason for these differences. For the more innovative and demanding Parallel-Speller, where the auditory and visual domains are independent from each other, a proof of concept was obtained: fifteen users could spell online with a mean accuracy of 87.7% (chance level <3%) showing a competitive average speed of 1.65 symbols per minute. The fact that it requires only one selection period per symbol makes it a good candidate for a fast communication channel. It brings a new insight into the true multisensory stimuli paradigms. Novel approaches for combining two sensory modalities were designed here, which are valuable for the development of ERP-based BCI paradigms.

  11. Population Response Profiles in Early Visual Cortex Are Biased in Favor of More Valuable Stimuli

    PubMed Central

    Saproo, Sameer

    2010-01-01

    Voluntary and stimulus-driven shifts of attention can modulate the representation of behaviorally relevant stimuli in early areas of visual cortex. In turn, attended items are processed faster and more accurately, facilitating the selection of appropriate behavioral responses. Information processing is also strongly influenced by past experience and recent studies indicate that the learned value of a stimulus can influence relatively late stages of decision making such as the process of selecting a motor response. However, the learned value of a stimulus can also influence the magnitude of cortical responses in early sensory areas such as V1 and S1. These early effects of stimulus value are presumed to improve the quality of sensory representations; however, the nature of these modulations is not clear. They could reflect nonspecific changes in response amplitude associated with changes in general arousal or they could reflect a bias in population responses so that high-value features are represented more robustly. To examine this issue, subjects performed a two-alternative forced choice paradigm with a variable-interval payoff schedule to dynamically manipulate the relative value of two stimuli defined by their orientation (one was rotated clockwise from vertical, the other counterclockwise). Activation levels in visual cortex were monitored using functional MRI and feature-selective voxel tuning functions while subjects performed the behavioral task. The results suggest that value not only modulates the relative amplitude of responses in early areas of human visual cortex, but also sharpens the response profile across the populations of feature-selective neurons that encode the critical stimulus feature (orientation). Moreover, changes in space- or feature-based attention cannot easily explain the results because representations of both the selected and the unselected stimuli underwent a similar feature-selective modulation. This sharpening in the population

  12. Exploring Combinations of Auditory and Visual Stimuli for Gaze-Independent Brain-Computer Interfaces

    PubMed Central

    An, Xingwei; Höhne, Johannes; Ming, Dong; Blankertz, Benjamin

    2014-01-01

    For Brain-Computer Interface (BCI) systems that are designed for users with severe impairments of the oculomotor system, an appropriate mode of presenting stimuli to the user is crucial. To investigate whether multi-sensory integration can be exploited in the gaze-independent event-related potentials (ERP) speller and to enhance BCI performance, we designed a visual-auditory speller. We investigate the possibility to enhance stimulus presentation by combining visual and auditory stimuli within gaze-independent spellers. In this study with N = 15 healthy users, two different ways of combining the two sensory modalities are proposed: simultaneous redundant streams (Combined-Speller) and interleaved independent streams (Parallel-Speller). Unimodal stimuli were applied as control conditions. The workload, ERP components, classification accuracy and resulting spelling speed were analyzed for each condition. The Combined-speller showed a lower workload than uni-modal paradigms, without the sacrifice of spelling performance. Besides, shorter latencies, lower amplitudes, as well as a shift of the temporal and spatial distribution of discriminative information were observed for Combined-speller. These results are important and are inspirations for future studies to search the reason for these differences. For the more innovative and demanding Parallel-Speller, where the auditory and visual domains are independent from each other, a proof of concept was obtained: fifteen users could spell online with a mean accuracy of 87.7% (chance level <3%) showing a competitive average speed of 1.65 symbols per minute. The fact that it requires only one selection period per symbol makes it a good candidate for a fast communication channel. It brings a new insight into the true multisensory stimuli paradigms. Novel approaches for combining two sensory modalities were designed here, which are valuable for the development of ERP-based BCI paradigms. PMID:25350547

  13. The Influences of Static and Interactive Dynamic Facial Stimuli on Visual Strategies in Persons with Asperger Syndrome

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Falkmer, Marita; Bjallmark, Anna; Larsson, Matilda; Falkmer, Torbjorn

    2011-01-01

    Several studies, using eye tracking methodology, suggest that different visual strategies in persons with autism spectrum conditions, compared with controls, are applied when viewing facial stimuli. Most eye tracking studies are, however, made in laboratory settings with either static (photos) or non-interactive dynamic stimuli, such as video…

  14. High-performance execution of psychophysical tasks with complex visual stimuli in MATLAB

    PubMed Central

    Asaad, Wael F.; Santhanam, Navaneethan; McClellan, Steven

    2013-01-01

    Behavioral, psychological, and physiological experiments often require the ability to present sensory stimuli, monitor and record subjects' responses, interface with a wide range of devices, and precisely control the timing of events within a behavioral task. Here, we describe our recent progress developing an accessible and full-featured software system for controlling such studies using the MATLAB environment. Compared with earlier reports on this software, key new features have been implemented to allow the presentation of more complex visual stimuli, increase temporal precision, and enhance user interaction. These features greatly improve the performance of the system and broaden its applicability to a wider range of possible experiments. This report describes these new features and improvements, current limitations, and quantifies the performance of the system in a real-world experimental setting. PMID:23034363

  15. Measuring Software Timing Errors in the Presentation of Visual Stimuli in Cognitive Neuroscience Experiments

    PubMed Central

    Garaizar, Pablo; Vadillo, Miguel A.; López-de-Ipiña, Diego; Matute, Helena

    2014-01-01

    Because of the features provided by an abundance of specialized experimental software packages, personal computers have become prominent and powerful tools in cognitive research. Most of these programs have mechanisms to control the precision and accuracy with which visual stimuli are presented as well as the response times. However, external factors, often related to the technology used to display the visual information, can have a noticeable impact on the actual performance and may be easily overlooked by researchers. The aim of this study is to measure the precision and accuracy of the timing mechanisms of some of the most popular software packages used in a typical laboratory scenario in order to assess whether presentation times configured by researchers do not differ from measured times more than what is expected due to the hardware limitations. Despite the apparent precision and accuracy of the results, important issues related to timing setups in the presentation of visual stimuli were found, and they should be taken into account by researchers in their experiments. PMID:24409318

  16. The Role of Visual Stimuli in Cross-Modal Stroop Interference.

    PubMed

    Lutfi-Proctor, Danielle A; Elliott, Emily M; Cowan, Nelson

    2014-03-01

    It has long been known that naming the color of a color word leads to what is known as the Stroop effect (Stroop, 1935). In the traditional Stroop task, when compared to naming the color of a color-neutral stimulus (e.g. an X or color patch), the presence of an incongruent color word decreases performance (Stroop interference), and a congruent color word increases performance (Stroop facilitation). Research has also shown that auditory color words can impact the color naming performance of colored items in a similar way in a variation known as cross-modal Stroop (Cowan & Barron, 1987). However, whether the item that is colored interacts with the auditory distractor to affect cross-modal Stroop interference is unclear. Research with the traditional, visual Stroop task has suggested that the amount of color the visual item displays and the semantic and phonetic components of the colored word can affect the magnitude of the resulting Stroop interference; as such, it is possible the same components could play a role in cross-modal Stroop interference. We conducted two experiments to examine the impact of the composition of the colored visual item on cross-modal Stroop interference. However, across two different experiments, three test versions, and numerous sets of trials, we were only able to find a small effect of the visual stimulus. This finding suggests that while the impact of the auditory stimuli is consistent and robust, the influence of non-word visual stimuli is quite small and unreliable and, while occasionally being statistically significant, it is not practically so. PMID:25068037

  17. The Role of Visual Stimuli in Cross-Modal Stroop Interference.

    PubMed

    Lutfi-Proctor, Danielle A; Elliott, Emily M; Cowan, Nelson

    2014-03-01

    It has long been known that naming the color of a color word leads to what is known as the Stroop effect (Stroop, 1935). In the traditional Stroop task, when compared to naming the color of a color-neutral stimulus (e.g. an X or color patch), the presence of an incongruent color word decreases performance (Stroop interference), and a congruent color word increases performance (Stroop facilitation). Research has also shown that auditory color words can impact the color naming performance of colored items in a similar way in a variation known as cross-modal Stroop (Cowan & Barron, 1987). However, whether the item that is colored interacts with the auditory distractor to affect cross-modal Stroop interference is unclear. Research with the traditional, visual Stroop task has suggested that the amount of color the visual item displays and the semantic and phonetic components of the colored word can affect the magnitude of the resulting Stroop interference; as such, it is possible the same components could play a role in cross-modal Stroop interference. We conducted two experiments to examine the impact of the composition of the colored visual item on cross-modal Stroop interference. However, across two different experiments, three test versions, and numerous sets of trials, we were only able to find a small effect of the visual stimulus. This finding suggests that while the impact of the auditory stimuli is consistent and robust, the influence of non-word visual stimuli is quite small and unreliable and, while occasionally being statistically significant, it is not practically so.

  18. Genetically Identified Suppressed-by-Contrast Retinal Ganglion Cells Reliably Signal Self-Generated Visual Stimuli

    PubMed Central

    Tien, Nai-Wen; Pearson, James T.; Heller, Charles R.; Demas, Jay

    2015-01-01

    Spike trains of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) are the sole source of visual information to the brain; and understanding how the ∼20 RGC types in mammalian retinae respond to diverse visual features and events is fundamental to understanding vision. Suppressed-by-contrast (SbC) RGCs stand apart from all other RGC types in that they reduce rather than increase firing rates in response to light increments (ON) and decrements (OFF). Here, we genetically identify and morphologically characterize SbC-RGCs in mice, and target them for patch-clamp recordings under two-photon guidance. We find that strong ON inhibition (glycine > GABA) outweighs weak ON excitation, and that inhibition (glycine > GABA) coincides with decreases in excitation at light OFF. These input patterns explain the suppressive spike responses of SbC-RGCs, which are observed in dim and bright light conditions. Inhibition to SbC-RGC is driven by rectified receptive field subunits, leading us to hypothesize that SbC-RGCs could signal pattern-independent changes in the retinal image. Indeed, we find that shifts of random textures matching saccade-like eye movements in mice elicit robust inhibitory inputs and suppress spiking of SbC-RGCs over a wide range of texture contrasts and spatial frequencies. Similarly, stimuli based on kinematic analyses of mouse blinking consistently suppress SbC-RGC spiking. Receiver operating characteristics show that SbC-RGCs are reliable indicators of self-generated visual stimuli that may contribute to central processing of blinks and saccades. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT This study genetically identifies and morphologically characterizes suppressed-by-contrast retinal ganglion cells (SbC-RGCs) in mice. Targeted patch-clamp recordings from SbC-RGCs under two-photon guidance elucidate the synaptic mechanisms mediating spike suppression to contrast steps, and reveal that SbC-RGCs respond reliably to stimuli mimicking saccade-like eye movements and blinks. The similarity of

  19. MRT letter: visual attention driven framework for hysteroscopy video abstraction.

    PubMed

    Ejaz, Naveed; Mehmood, Irfan; Baik, Sung Wook

    2013-06-01

    Diagnostic hysteroscopy is a popular method for investigating the regions in the female reproductive system. The videos generated by hysteroscopy sessions of patients are recurrently archived in medical libraries. Gynecologists often need to browse these libraries in search of similar cases or for reviewing old videos of a patient. Diagnostic hysteroscopy videos contain a lot of information with abundant redundancy. Key frame extraction-based video summarization can be used to reduce this huge amount of data. Moreover, key frames can be used for browsing and indexing of hysteroscopy videos. In this article, a domain specific visual attention driven framework for summarization of hysteroscopy videos is proposed. The visual attention model is materialized by computing saliency based on color, texture, and motion. The experimental results, in comparison with other techniques, demonstrate the efficacy of the proposed framework.

  20. A three-stimulus midsession reversal task in pigeons with visual and spatial discriminative stimuli.

    PubMed

    McMillan, Neil; Roberts, William A

    2015-01-01

    In a two-stimulus visual discrimination task with a reversal in reward contingencies midway through each session, pigeons produce a surprising number of both anticipatory (i.e., before the reversal) and perseverative (i.e., after the reversal) errors. In the current work, we examined pigeons' (Columba livia) patterns of responding on a 90-trial, three-stimulus visual or spatial discrimination task with two changes in reward contingency (one after Trial 30 and one after Trial 60) during each session. On probe sessions where pecking the first-correct stimulus was rewarded for the first 60 rather than 30 trials, pigeons on a spatial discrimination pecked the first-correct stimulus until it was no longer rewarded, while visual discrimination birds ceased responding to the first-correct stimulus even while it was still being rewarded. On probe sessions where the onset of the first trial was delayed 7 min, pigeons' performance on the visual discrimination was disrupted by the interval delay, but performance in the spatial condition was more similar to baseline. Pigeons use different strategies (temporal control vs. local reinforcement) on midsession reversal tasks with visual versus spatial stimuli, suggesting that they are selectively permeable to changes in information (global vs. local reinforcement rates).

  1. A three-stimulus midsession reversal task in pigeons with visual and spatial discriminative stimuli.

    PubMed

    McMillan, Neil; Roberts, William A

    2015-01-01

    In a two-stimulus visual discrimination task with a reversal in reward contingencies midway through each session, pigeons produce a surprising number of both anticipatory (i.e., before the reversal) and perseverative (i.e., after the reversal) errors. In the current work, we examined pigeons' (Columba livia) patterns of responding on a 90-trial, three-stimulus visual or spatial discrimination task with two changes in reward contingency (one after Trial 30 and one after Trial 60) during each session. On probe sessions where pecking the first-correct stimulus was rewarded for the first 60 rather than 30 trials, pigeons on a spatial discrimination pecked the first-correct stimulus until it was no longer rewarded, while visual discrimination birds ceased responding to the first-correct stimulus even while it was still being rewarded. On probe sessions where the onset of the first trial was delayed 7 min, pigeons' performance on the visual discrimination was disrupted by the interval delay, but performance in the spatial condition was more similar to baseline. Pigeons use different strategies (temporal control vs. local reinforcement) on midsession reversal tasks with visual versus spatial stimuli, suggesting that they are selectively permeable to changes in information (global vs. local reinforcement rates). PMID:25227939

  2. The relative importance of reinforced versus nonreinforced stimuli in visual discrimination learning by redwinged blackbirds (Agelaius phoeniceus).

    PubMed

    Mason, J R; Reidinger, R F

    1982-10-01

    Redwinged blackbirds were trained to locate and peck apple slices in two discrimination problems with four times more training on one problem than on the other. The birds were then given transfer tests with the stimuli re-paired. Nonreinforced (S-) stimuli exerted greater control over behavior than did reinforced (S+) stimuli. We inferred that the blackbirds learned more about what to avoid than what to approach when searching for food in the two-choice situation. That inference is contrary to the notion that, by being alert to the visual cues which signal foods (i.e., S+ stimuli), birds can more successfully cope with irrelevant visual information encountered during foraging. Rather, being alert to cues which signal the absence of food (i.e., S- stimuli) may be relatively more important.

  3. Peripheral visual response time to colored stimuli imaged on the horizontal meridian

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Haines, R. F.; Gross, M. M.; Nylen, D.; Dawson, L. M.

    1974-01-01

    Two male observers were administered a binocular visual response time task to small (45 min arc), flashed, photopic stimuli at four dominant wavelengths (632 nm red; 583 nm yellow; 526 nm green; 464 nm blue) imaged across the horizontal retinal meridian. The stimuli were imaged at 10 deg arc intervals from 80 deg left to 90 deg right of fixation. Testing followed either prior light adaptation or prior dark adaptation. Results indicated that mean response time (RT) varies with stimulus color. RT is faster to yellow than to blue and green and slowest to red. In general, mean RT was found to increase from fovea to periphery for all four colors, with the curve for red stimuli exhibiting the most rapid positive acceleration with increasing angular eccentricity from the fovea. The shape of the RT distribution across the retina was also found to depend upon the state of light or dark adaptation. The findings are related to previous RT research and are discussed in terms of optimizing the color and position of colored displays on instrument panels.

  4. Escape response of the crab Neohelice to computer generated looming and translational visual danger stimuli.

    PubMed

    Scarano, Florencia; Tomsic, Daniel

    2014-01-01

    Historically, arthropod behavior has been considered to be a collection of simple, automaton-like routines commanded by domain-specific brain modules working independently. Nowadays, it is evident that the extensive behavioral repertoire of these animals and its flexibility necessarily imply far more complex abilities than originally assumed. For example, even what was thought to be a straightforward behavior of crabs, the escape response to visual danger stimuli, proved to involve a number of sequential stages, each of which implying decisions made on the bases of stimulus and contextual information. Inspired in previous observations on how the stimulus trajectory can affect the escape response of crabs in the field, we investigated the escape response to images of objects approaching directly toward the crab (looming stimuli: LS) or moving parallel to it (translational stimuli: TS) in the laboratory. Computer simulations of moving objects were effective to elicit escapes. LS evoked escapes with higher probability and intensity (speed and distance of escape) than TS, but responses started later. In addition to the escape run, TS also evoked a defensive response of the animal with its claws. Repeated presentations of TS or LS were both capable of inducing habituation. Results are discussed in connection with the possibilities offered by crabs to investigate the neural bases of behaviors occurring in the natural environment.

  5. Dual-monitor deterministic hardware for visual stimuli generation in neuroscience experiments.

    PubMed

    Gazziro, Mario; Almeida, Lirio

    2010-01-01

    This article describes the development of a dual-monitor visual stimulus generator that is used in neuroscience experiments with invertebrates such as flies. The experiment consists in the visualization of two fixed images that are displaced horizontally according to the stimulus data. The system was developed using off-the-shelf FPGA kits and it is capable of displaying 640x480 pixels with 256 intensity levels at 200 frames per second (FPS) on each monitor. A Raster plot of the experiment with the superimposed stimuli was generated as the result of this work. A novel architecture was developed, using the same DOT Clock for both monitors, and its implementation generates a perfect synchronism in both devices.

  6. Dual-monitor deterministic hardware for visual stimuli generation in neuroscience experiments.

    PubMed

    Gazziro, Mario; Almeida, Lirio

    2010-01-01

    This article describes the development of a dual-monitor visual stimulus generator that is used in neuroscience experiments with invertebrates such as flies. The experiment consists in the visualization of two fixed images that are displaced horizontally according to the stimulus data. The system was developed using off-the-shelf FPGA kits and it is capable of displaying 640x480 pixels with 256 intensity levels at 200 frames per second (FPS) on each monitor. A Raster plot of the experiment with the superimposed stimuli was generated as the result of this work. A novel architecture was developed, using the same DOT Clock for both monitors, and its implementation generates a perfect synchronism in both devices. PMID:21096378

  7. Prenatal and acute cocaine exposure affects neural responses and habituation to visual stimuli.

    PubMed

    Riley, Elizabeth; Kopotiyenko, Konstantin; Zhdanova, Irina

    2015-01-01

    Psychostimulants have many effects on visual function, from adverse following acute and prenatal exposure to therapeutic on attention deficit. To determine the impact of prenatal and acute cocaine exposure on visual processing, we studied neuronal responses to visual stimuli in two brain regions of a transgenic larval zebrafish expressing the calcium indicator GCaMP-HS. We found that both red light (LF) and dark (DF) flashes elicited similar responses in the optic tectum neuropil (TOn), while the dorsal telencephalon (dTe) responded only to LF. Acute cocaine (0.5 μM) reduced neuronal responses to LF in both brain regions but did not affect responses to DF. Repeated stimulus presentation (RSP) led to habituation of dTe neurons to LF. Acute cocaine prevented habituation. TOn habituated to DF, but not LF, and DF habituation was not modified by cocaine. Remarkably, prenatal cocaine exposure (PCE) prevented the effects of acute cocaine on LF response amplitude and habituation later in development in both brain regions, but did not affect DF responses. We discovered that, in spite of similar neural responses to LF and DF in the TO (superior colliculus in mammals), responses to LF are more complex, involving dTe (homologous to the cerebral cortex), and are more vulnerable to cocaine. Our results demonstrate that acute cocaine exposure affects visual processing differentially by brain region, and that PCE modifies zebrafish visual processing in multiple structures in a stimulus-dependent manner. These findings are in accordance with the major role that the optic tectum and cerebral cortex play in sustaining visual attention, and support the hypothesis that modification of these areas by PCE may be responsible for visual deficits noted in humans. This model offers new methodological approaches for studying the adverse and therapeutic effects of psychostimulants on attention, and for the development of new pharmacological interventions.

  8. Timescales of multineuronal activity patterns reflect temporal structure of visual stimuli.

    PubMed

    Jurjuţ, Ovidiu F; Nikolić, Danko; Singer, Wolf; Yu, Shan; Havenith, Martha N; Mureşan, Raul C

    2011-02-08

    The investigation of distributed coding across multiple neurons in the cortex remains to this date a challenge. Our current understanding of collective encoding of information and the relevant timescales is still limited. Most results are restricted to disparate timescales, focused on either very fast, e.g., spike-synchrony, or slow timescales, e.g., firing rate. Here, we investigated systematically multineuronal activity patterns evolving on different timescales, spanning the whole range from spike-synchrony to mean firing rate. Using multi-electrode recordings from cat visual cortex, we show that cortical responses can be described as trajectories in a high-dimensional pattern space. Patterns evolve on a continuum of coexisting timescales that strongly relate to the temporal properties of stimuli. Timescales consistent with the time constants of neuronal membranes and fast synaptic transmission (5-20 ms) play a particularly salient role in encoding a large amount of stimulus-related information. Thus, to faithfully encode the properties of visual stimuli the brain engages multiple neurons into activity patterns evolving on multiple timescales.

  9. Neural correlate of the projection of mental states on the not-structured visual stimuli.

    PubMed

    Luciani, Massimiliano; Cecchini, Marco; Altavilla, Daniela; Palumbo, Letizia; Aceto, Paola; Ruggeri, Giuseppe; Vecchio, Fabrizio; Lai, Carlo

    2014-06-24

    Projection is a spontaneous and complex mental activity responsible for the subjective meaning attribution. The hypotheses of this study were that the neural correlate of projection may involve frontal, parietal, and temporal brain areas, and that alexithymia may be negatively associated with intensities in limbic and paralimbic areas during projection. EEG data were recorded continuously at 250 Hz using NetStation 4.5.1 with 256-channels HydroCel Geodesic Sensor Net in 20 healthy subjects during the presentation of structured and not-structured visual stimuli. The tasks were paying attention to the stimuli and thinking about the possible meaning of each image. Event related potential (ERP) components and low-resolution electromagnetic tomography (sLoreta) were analyzed. Participants were administered the 20-Item Toronto Alexithymia Scale before stimulus presentation. Source analyses (sLORETA) showed a greater activated source in the left primary somatosensory cortex (BA1) compared to all the others BA in both conditions through all the ERP components. An involvement of the frontal (right-BA4, left- and right-BA9, left-BA11) and parietal (left and right-BA2 and left-BA7) areas was found in projective response to not-structured visual stimuli. Alexithymia levels were negatively correlated with the anterior (right-BA32) and posterior (left-BA29) cingulate cortex. Findings show the relevance of fronto-parieto circuits during projection, where the internally generating somatosensory representations could drive an intermodal meaning attribution during the task. Moreover, high alexithymia levels were associated with a reduced activation of the cingulated cortex. PMID:24831184

  10. Multiple visual quantitative cues enhance discrimination of dynamic stimuli during infancy.

    PubMed

    Baker, Joseph M; Mahamane, Salif P; Jordan, Kerry E

    2014-06-01

    Infants possess basic capabilities to assess various quantitative properties such as number, size, and time. Preverbal discriminations are approximate, however, and are similarly limited across these dimensions. Here, we present the first evidence that multiple sources of quantitative unisensory information about dynamic stimuli-namely, simultaneous visual cues to changes in both number and surface area-may accelerate 6-month-olds' quantitative competence. Using a habituation-dishabituation paradigm, results from Experiment 1 demonstrate that, when provided with such visual cues to multiple quantitative properties that occur in the same direction, infants make more precise discriminations than has been shown when they receive information about either cue alone. Moreover, Experiment 2 demonstrates that infants' discrimination also benefits from simultaneous visual cues to quantitative changes that occur in opposite directions. Finally, Experiment 3 demonstrates that these findings are not driven by infants' ability to discriminate a 2:3 ratio change in surface area of a dynamic stimulus alone. Thus, we hypothesize that enhanced quantitative discrimination occurs because simultaneous visual quantitative changes may be more salient than single-source information, which could better recruit attention and result in more precise learning and remembering.

  11. Physiological and behavioral reactions elicited by simulated and real-life visual and acoustic helicopter stimuli in dairy goats

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Anecdotal reports and a few scientific publications suggest that flyovers of helicopters at low altitude may elicit fear- or anxiety-related behavioral reactions in grazing feral and farm animals. We investigated the behavioral and physiological stress reactions of five individually housed dairy goats to different acoustic and visual stimuli from helicopters and to combinations of these stimuli under controlled environmental (indoor) conditions. The visual stimuli were helicopter animations projected on a large screen in front of the enclosures of the goats. Acoustic and visual stimuli of a tractor were also presented. On the final day of the study the goats were exposed to two flyovers (altitude 50 m and 75 m) of a Chinook helicopter while grazing in a pasture. Salivary cortisol, behavior, and heart rate of the goats were registered before, during and after stimulus presentations. Results The goats reacted alert to the visual and/or acoustic stimuli that were presented in their room. They raised their heads and turned their ears forward in the direction of the stimuli. There was no statistically reliable rise of the average velocity of moving of the goats in their enclosure and no increase of the duration of moving during presentation of the stimuli. Also there was no increase in heart rate or salivary cortisol concentration during the indoor test sessions. Surprisingly, no physiological and behavioral stress responses were observed during the flyover of a Chinook at 50 m, which produced a peak noise of 110 dB. Conclusions We conclude that the behavior and physiology of goats are unaffected by brief episodes of intense, adverse visual and acoustic stimulation such as the sight and noise of overflying helicopters. The absence of a physiological stress response and of elevated emotional reactivity of goats subjected to helicopter stimuli is discussed in relation to the design and testing schedule of this study. PMID:21496239

  12. Kitt Peak Speckle Interferometry of Close Visual Binary Stars (Abstract)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gener, R.; Rowe, D.; Smith, T. C.; Teiche, A.; Harshaw, R.; Wallace, D.; Weise, E.; Wiley, E.; Boyce, G.; Boyce, P.; Branston, D.; Chaney, K.; Clark, R. K.; Estrada, C.; Estrada, R.; Frey, T.; Green, W. L.; Haurberg, N.; Jones, G.; Kenney, J.; Loftin, S.; McGieson, I.; Patel, R.; Plummer, J.; Ridgely, J.; Trueblood, M.; Westergren, D.; Wren, P.

    2014-12-01

    (Abstract only) Speckle interferometry can be used to overcome normal seeing limitations by taking many very short exposures at high magnification and analyzing the resulting speckles to obtain the position angles and separations of close binary stars. A typical speckle observation of a close binary consists of 1,000 images, each 20 milliseconds in duration. The images are stored as a multi-plane FITS cube. A portable speckle interferometry system that features an electron-multiplying CCD camera was used by the authors during two week-long observing runs on the 2.1-meter telescope at Kitt Peak National Observatory to obtain some 1,000 data cubes of close binaries selected from a dozen different research programs. Many hundreds of single reference stars were also observed and used in deconvolution to remove undesirable atmospheric and telescope optical effects. The database of well over one million images was reduced with the Speckle Interferometry Tool of platesolve3. A few sample results are provided. During the second Kitt Peak run, the McMath-Pierce 1.6- and 0.8-meter solar telescopes were evaluated for nighttime speckle interferometry, while the 0.8-meter Coude feed was used to obtain differential radial velocities of short arc binaries.

  13. Effect of complex treatment using visual and auditory stimuli on the symptoms of attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder in children.

    PubMed

    Park, Mi-Sook; Byun, Ki-Won; Park, Yong-Kyung; Kim, Mi-Han; Jung, Sung-Hwa; Kim, Hong

    2013-04-01

    We investigated the effects of complex treatment using visual and auditory stimuli on the symptoms of attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in children. Forty-seven male children (7-13 yr old), who were clinically diagnosed with ADHD at the Balance Brain Center in Seoul, Korea, were included in this study. The complex treatment consisted of visual and auditory stimuli, core muscle exercise, targeting ball exercise, ocular motor exercise, and visual motor integration. All subjects completed the complex treatment for 60 min/day, 2-3 times/week for more than 12 weeks. Data regarding visual and auditory reaction time and cognitive function were obtained using the Neurosync program, Stroop Color-Word Test, and test of nonverbal intelligence (TONI) at pre- and post-treatment. The complex treatment significantly decreased the total reaction time, while it increased the number of combo actions on visual and auditory stimuli (P< 0.05). The Stroop color, word, and color-word scores were significantly increased at post-treatment compared to the scores at pretreatment (P< 0.05). There was no significant change in the TONI scores, although a tendency toward an increase in these scores was observed. In conclusion, complex treatment using visual and auditory stimuli alleviated the symptoms of ADHD and improved cognitive function in children. In addition, visual and auditory function might be possible indicators for demonstrating effective ADHD intervention. PMID:24278878

  14. Effect of complex treatment using visual and auditory stimuli on the symptoms of attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder in children.

    PubMed

    Park, Mi-Sook; Byun, Ki-Won; Park, Yong-Kyung; Kim, Mi-Han; Jung, Sung-Hwa; Kim, Hong

    2013-04-01

    We investigated the effects of complex treatment using visual and auditory stimuli on the symptoms of attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in children. Forty-seven male children (7-13 yr old), who were clinically diagnosed with ADHD at the Balance Brain Center in Seoul, Korea, were included in this study. The complex treatment consisted of visual and auditory stimuli, core muscle exercise, targeting ball exercise, ocular motor exercise, and visual motor integration. All subjects completed the complex treatment for 60 min/day, 2-3 times/week for more than 12 weeks. Data regarding visual and auditory reaction time and cognitive function were obtained using the Neurosync program, Stroop Color-Word Test, and test of nonverbal intelligence (TONI) at pre- and post-treatment. The complex treatment significantly decreased the total reaction time, while it increased the number of combo actions on visual and auditory stimuli (P< 0.05). The Stroop color, word, and color-word scores were significantly increased at post-treatment compared to the scores at pretreatment (P< 0.05). There was no significant change in the TONI scores, although a tendency toward an increase in these scores was observed. In conclusion, complex treatment using visual and auditory stimuli alleviated the symptoms of ADHD and improved cognitive function in children. In addition, visual and auditory function might be possible indicators for demonstrating effective ADHD intervention.

  15. Neural correlates of visualizations of concrete and abstract words in preschool children: a developmental embodied approach

    PubMed Central

    D’Angiulli, Amedeo; Griffiths, Gordon; Marmolejo-Ramos, Fernando

    2015-01-01

    The neural correlates of visualization underlying word comprehension were examined in preschool children. On each trial, a concrete or abstract word was delivered binaurally (part 1: post-auditory visualization), followed by a four-picture array (a target plus three distractors; part 2: matching visualization). Children were to select the picture matching the word they heard in part 1. Event-related potentials (ERPs) locked to each stimulus presentation and task interval were averaged over sets of trials of increasing word abstractness. ERP time-course during both parts of the task showed that early activity (i.e., <300 ms) was predominant in response to concrete words, while activity in response to abstract words became evident only at intermediate (i.e., 300–699 ms) and late (i.e., 700–1000 ms) ERP intervals. Specifically, ERP topography showed that while early activity during post-auditory visualization was linked to left temporo-parietal areas for concrete words, early activity during matching visualization occurred mostly in occipito-parietal areas for concrete words, but more anteriorly in centro-parietal areas for abstract words. In intermediate ERPs, post-auditory visualization coincided with parieto-occipital and parieto-frontal activity in response to both concrete and abstract words, while in matching visualization a parieto-central activity was common to both types of words. In the late ERPs for both types of words, the post-auditory visualization involved right-hemispheric activity following a “post-anterior” pathway sequence: occipital, parietal, and temporal areas; conversely, matching visualization involved left-hemispheric activity following an “ant-posterior” pathway sequence: frontal, temporal, parietal, and occipital areas. These results suggest that, similarly, for concrete and abstract words, meaning in young children depends on variably complex visualization processes integrating visuo-auditory experiences and supramodal embodying

  16. Neural correlates of visualizations of concrete and abstract words in preschool children: a developmental embodied approach.

    PubMed

    D'Angiulli, Amedeo; Griffiths, Gordon; Marmolejo-Ramos, Fernando

    2015-01-01

    The neural correlates of visualization underlying word comprehension were examined in preschool children. On each trial, a concrete or abstract word was delivered binaurally (part 1: post-auditory visualization), followed by a four-picture array (a target plus three distractors; part 2: matching visualization). Children were to select the picture matching the word they heard in part 1. Event-related potentials (ERPs) locked to each stimulus presentation and task interval were averaged over sets of trials of increasing word abstractness. ERP time-course during both parts of the task showed that early activity (i.e., <300 ms) was predominant in response to concrete words, while activity in response to abstract words became evident only at intermediate (i.e., 300-699 ms) and late (i.e., 700-1000 ms) ERP intervals. Specifically, ERP topography showed that while early activity during post-auditory visualization was linked to left temporo-parietal areas for concrete words, early activity during matching visualization occurred mostly in occipito-parietal areas for concrete words, but more anteriorly in centro-parietal areas for abstract words. In intermediate ERPs, post-auditory visualization coincided with parieto-occipital and parieto-frontal activity in response to both concrete and abstract words, while in matching visualization a parieto-central activity was common to both types of words. In the late ERPs for both types of words, the post-auditory visualization involved right-hemispheric activity following a "post-anterior" pathway sequence: occipital, parietal, and temporal areas; conversely, matching visualization involved left-hemispheric activity following an "ant-posterior" pathway sequence: frontal, temporal, parietal, and occipital areas. These results suggest that, similarly, for concrete and abstract words, meaning in young children depends on variably complex visualization processes integrating visuo-auditory experiences and supramodal embodying

  17. Non-target stimuli in the visual field influence movement preparation in upper-limb reaching.

    PubMed

    Neely, Kristina A; Morris, Laura J

    2015-09-14

    The present work provides an empirical test of the Dynamic Field Theory of visuospatial cognition. The Dynamic Field Theory is a bi-stable neural network model applied to explain how visual information is integrated during the preparation of reaching responses (Erlhagen and Schöner). The dynamic field theory posits that motor cortices develop peaks of activation for each possible target in the visual field. Targets that are close in space produce neural peaks with overlapping distributions, whereas targets that are far apart produce distinct peaks with non-overlapping distributions. As such, the Dynamic Field Theory predicts reaction times to potential targets that are close in space will be faster than those to targets that are far apart. The present work examined how proximal and distal distractors impact reaction time in an upper-limb reaching task. The results demonstrated that distal distractors result in prolonged reaction times compared to proximal distractors. We suggest that reaction time represents the time required to inhibit neural activity representing the location of the distractor. Thus, prolonged reaction times observed for distal distractors reflect the temporal demands associated with the competition of two non-overlapping distributions of activity in the brain. These findings support the tenets of the Dynamic Field Theory and demonstrate that non-target stimuli in the visual field can influence movement preparation.

  18. Olfactory Cues Are Subordinate to Visual Stimuli in a Neotropical Generalist Weevil

    PubMed Central

    Otálora-Luna, Fernando; Lapointe, Stephen L.; Dickens, Joseph C.

    2013-01-01

    The tropical root weevil Diaprepes abbreviatus is a major pest of multiple crops in the Caribbean Islands and has become a serious constraint to citrus production in the United States. Recent work has identified host and conspecific volatiles that mediate host- and mate-finding by D. abbreviatus. The interaction of light, color, and odors has not been studied in this species. The responses of male and female D. abbreviatus to narrow bandwidths of visible light emitted by LEDs offered alone and in combination with olfactory stimuli were studied in a specially-designed multiple choice arena combined with a locomotion compensator. Weevils were more attracted to wavelengths close to green and yellow compared with blue or ultraviolet, but preferred red and darkness over green. Additionally, dim green light was preferred over brighter green. Adult weevils were also attracted to the odor of its citrus host + conspecifics. However, the attractiveness of citrus + conspecific odors disappeared in the presence of a green light. Photic stimulation induced males but not females to increase their speed. In the presence of light emitted by LEDs, turning speed decreased and path straightness increased, indicating that weevils tended to walk less tortuously. Diaprepes abbreviatus showed a hierarchy between chemo- and photo-taxis in the series of experiments presented herein, where the presence of the green light abolished upwind anemotaxis elicited by the pheromone + host plant odor. Insight into the strong responses to visual stimuli of chemically stimulated insects may be provided when the amount of information supplied by vision and olfaction is compared, as the information transmission capacity of compound eyes is estimated to be several orders of magnitude higher compared with the olfactory system. Subordination of olfactory responses by photic stimuli should be considered in the design of strategies aimed at management of such insects. PMID:23341926

  19. Effects of attentional training on visual attention to emotional stimuli in archers: A preliminary investigation.

    PubMed

    Chuang, Lan-Ya; Huang, Chung-Ju; Hung, Tsung-Min

    2015-12-01

    Attentional training has been used to modify attentional bias patterns in anxious individuals. This study examined the effect of attentional training on anxious archers' information processing using electrophysiological indices. Eighteen experienced archers with relatively high levels of competitive anxiety were assigned to either a training group or a control group. The training group received a 6-week attentional training protocol that was designed to switch attention away from threats, whereas the control group participated in a placebo training. The results revealed a smaller P1 difference wave for the training group in the posttest compared with pretest, whereas no change in N1 amplitude was found after training. The P1 difference wave finding suggests that more similar visual attentional resources were invested in probes replacing positive cues compared with probes replacing threatening cues after attentional bias training. In particular, archers who accepted training deployed similar attention resources to threatening and positive stimuli but those who accepted sham training avoided attention from threatening stimuli.

  20. Human observers have optimal introspective access to perceptual processes even for visually masked stimuli

    PubMed Central

    Peters, Megan A K; Lau, Hakwan

    2015-01-01

    Many believe that humans can ‘perceive unconsciously’ – that for weak stimuli, briefly presented and masked, above-chance discrimination is possible without awareness. Interestingly, an online survey reveals that most experts in the field recognize the lack of convincing evidence for this phenomenon, and yet they persist in this belief. Using a recently developed bias-free experimental procedure for measuring subjective introspection (confidence), we found no evidence for unconscious perception; participants’ behavior matched that of a Bayesian ideal observer, even though the stimuli were visually masked. This surprising finding suggests that the thresholds for subjective awareness and objective discrimination are effectively the same: if objective task performance is above chance, there is likely conscious experience. These findings shed new light on decades-old methodological issues regarding what it takes to consider a neurobiological or behavioral effect to be 'unconscious,' and provide a platform for rigorously investigating unconscious perception in future studies. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.09651.001 PMID:26433023

  1. Recognition of category-related visual stimuli in Parkinson's disease: before and after pharmacological treatment.

    PubMed

    Righi, S; Viggiano, M P; Paganini, M; Ramat, S; Marini, P

    2007-10-01

    Visual-sensory dysfunctions and semantic processing impairments are widely reported in Parkinson's disease (PD) research. The present study investigated the category-specific deficit in object recognition as a function of both the semantic category and spatial frequency content of stimuli. In the first experiment, the role of dopamine in object-recognition processing was assessed by comparing PD drug naïve (PD-DN), PD receiving levodopa treatment (PD-LD), and control subjects. Experiment 2 consisted of a retest session for PD drug naïve subjects after a period of pharmacological treatment. All participants completed an identification task which displayed animals and tools at nine levels of filtering. Each object was revealed in a sequence of frames whereby the object was presented at increasingly less-filtered images up to a complete version of the image. Results indicate an impaired identification pattern for PD-DN subjects solely for animal category stimuli. This differential pharmacological therapy effect was also confirmed at retest (experiment 2). Thus, our data suggest that dopaminergic loss has a specific role in category-specific impairment. Two possible hypotheses are discussed that may account for the defective recognition of semantically different objects in PD.

  2. Freezing Behavior as a Response to Sexual Visual Stimuli as Demonstrated by Posturography

    PubMed Central

    Mouras, Harold; Lelard, Thierry; Ahmaidi, Said; Godefroy, Olivier; Krystkowiak, Pierre

    2015-01-01

    Posturographic changes in motivational conditions remain largely unexplored in the context of embodied cognition. Over the last decade, sexual motivation has been used as a good canonical working model to study motivated social interactions. The objective of this study was to explore posturographic variations in response to visual sexual videos as compared to neutral videos. Our results support demonstration of a freezing-type response in response to sexually explicit stimuli compared to other conditions, as demonstrated by significantly decreased standard deviations for (i) the center of pressure displacement along the mediolateral and anteroposterior axes and (ii) center of pressure’s displacement surface. These results support the complexity of the motor correlates of sexual motivation considered to be a canonical functional context to study the motor correlates of motivated social interactions. PMID:25992571

  3. Intermodal transfer in temporal discrimination. [of visual and acoustic stimuli duration

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Warm, J. S.; Stutz, R. M.; Vassolo, P. A.

    1975-01-01

    This study determined if training for accuracy in temporal discrimination would transfer across sensory modalities. A fractionation method was used in which subjects bisected the durations of acoustic and visual signals at three standard intervals (6, 12, and 18 sec). Absolute error was the performance index. Half of the subjects were trained with acoustic stimuli and then tested in vision; the remainder were trained in vision and tested in audition. Similar negatively accelerated acquisition functions were noted for both modalities. Positive intermodal transfer, characterized by symmetry across modalities, was obtained at all standard durations. The results were considered to provide support for the notion that a common mechanism underlies temporal discriminations in different sensory systems.

  4. Freezing behavior as a response to sexual visual stimuli as demonstrated by posturography.

    PubMed

    Mouras, Harold; Lelard, Thierry; Ahmaidi, Said; Godefroy, Olivier; Krystkowiak, Pierre

    2015-01-01

    Posturographic changes in motivational conditions remain largely unexplored in the context of embodied cognition. Over the last decade, sexual motivation has been used as a good canonical working model to study motivated social interactions. The objective of this study was to explore posturographic variations in response to visual sexual videos as compared to neutral videos. Our results support demonstration of a freezing-type response in response to sexually explicit stimuli compared to other conditions, as demonstrated by significantly decreased standard deviations for (i) the center of pressure displacement along the mediolateral and anteroposterior axes and (ii) center of pressure's displacement surface. These results support the complexity of the motor correlates of sexual motivation considered to be a canonical functional context to study the motor correlates of motivated social interactions.

  5. Reduced performance in tests of memory and visual abstraction in seamen exposed to industrial solvents.

    PubMed

    Moen, B E; Riise, T; Haga, E M; Fossan, G O

    1990-02-01

    Eighty-five seamen exposed to a variety of organic solvents and hydrocarbon compounds during their work on chemical tankers were compared with 59 unexposed seamen. Visual memory, auditory memory and visual abstraction were examined 14 days or more after the last solvent exposure. Multivariate analyses were performed to control the effects of confounding factors such as age, alcohol consumption, smoking, cerebral concussions and educational level. Significant correlations were found between increasing solvent exposure and poor results in tests of auditory memory and visual abstraction. These results indicate adverse psychological effects caused by chronic organic solvent exposure.

  6. Visual imagery while reading concrete and abstract Japanese kanji words: an fMRI study.

    PubMed

    Hayashi, Atsuko; Okamoto, Yasumasa; Yoshimura, Shinpei; Yoshino, Atsuo; Toki, Shigeru; Yamashita, Hidehisa; Matsuda, Fumio; Yamawaki, Shigeto

    2014-02-01

    Neuroimaging studies have investigated differences in neural correlates between abstract and concrete concepts but this has not been done with Japanese participants. Concrete words have higher imageability than abstract words, such that they elicit more visual imagery. The present study used functional MRI to investigate brain activity of Japanese participants (N=16) during generation of visual images for written concrete or abstract Japanese kanji words. Concrete words elicited significantly more activation than abstract words in the left middle frontal gyrus (LMFG), bilateral superior frontal gyrus, and left fusiform gyrus (LFG). Psychophysiological interaction (PPI) analyses were performed to assess LMFG and LFG functional connections. LMFG activity was accompanied by increased functional interaction with the left superior parietal lobule (LSPL), and LFG activity was accompanied by increased functional interaction with the LMFG. This finding suggests that the LMFG plays an important role in visual imagery, with interactions between this region and both the LSPL and LFG.

  7. Sex differences in interactions between nucleus accumbens and visual cortex by explicit visual erotic stimuli: an fMRI study.

    PubMed

    Lee, S W; Jeong, B S; Choi, J; Kim, J-W

    2015-01-01

    Men tend to have greater positive responses than women to explicit visual erotic stimuli (EVES). However, it remains unclear, which brain network makes men more sensitive to EVES and which factors contribute to the brain network activity. In this study, we aimed to assess the effect of sex difference on brain connectivity patterns by EVES. We also investigated the association of testosterone with brain connection that showed the effects of sex difference. During functional magnetic resonance imaging scans, 14 males and 14 females were asked to see alternating blocks of pictures that were either erotic or non-erotic. Psychophysiological interaction analysis was performed to investigate the functional connectivity of the nucleus accumbens (NA) as it related to EVES. Men showed significantly greater EVES-specific functional connection between the right NA and the right lateral occipital cortex (LOC). In addition, the right NA and the right LOC network activity was positively correlated with the plasma testosterone level in men. Our results suggest that the reason men are sensitive to EVES is the increased interaction in the visual reward networks, which is modulated by their plasma testosterone level. PMID:25971857

  8. Neural correlates of visual versus abstract letter processing in Roman and Arabic scripts.

    PubMed

    Carreiras, Manuel; Perea, Manuel; Gil-López, Cristina; Abu Mallouh, Reem; Salillas, Elena

    2013-11-01

    In alphabetic orthographies, letter identification is a critical process during the recognition of visually presented words. In the present experiment, we examined whether and when visual form influences letter processing in two very distinct alphabets (Roman and Arabic). Disentangling visual versus abstract letter representations was possible because letters in the Roman alphabet may look visually similar/dissimilar in lowercase and uppercase forms (e.g., c-C vs. r-R) and letters in the Arabic alphabet may look visually similar/dissimilar, depending on their position within a word (e.g., [Formula: see text] - [Formula: see text] vs. [Formula: see text] - [Formula: see text]). We employed a masked priming same-different matching task while ERPs were measured from individuals who had learned the two alphabets at an early age. Results revealed a prime-target relatedness effect dependent on visual form in early components (P/N150) and a more abstract relatedness effect in a later component (P300). Importantly, the pattern of data was remarkably similar in the two alphabets. Thus, these data offer empirical support for a universal (i.e., across alphabets) hierarchical account of letter processing in which the time course of letter processing in different scripts follows a similar trajectory from visual features to visual form independent of abstract representations.

  9. Neural Correlates of Visual versus Abstract Letter Processing in Roman and Arabic Scripts

    PubMed Central

    Carreiras, Manuel; Perea, Manuel; Gil-López, Cristina; Mallouh, Reem Abu; Salillas, Elena

    2013-01-01

    In alphabetic orthographies, letter identification is a critical process during the recognition of visually presented words. In the present experiment, we examined whether and when visual form influences letter processing in two very distinct alphabets (Roman and Arabic). Disentangling visual versus abstract letter representations was possible because letters in the Roman alphabet may look visually similar/dissimilar in lowercase and uppercase forms (e.g., c-C vs. r-R) and letters in the Arabic alphabet may look visually similar/dissimilar, depending on their position within a word (e.g., vs. -). We employed a masked priming same–different matching task while ERPs were measured from individuals who had learned the two alphabets at an early age. Results revealed a prime–target relatedness effect dependent on visual form in early components (P/N150) and a more abstract relatedness effect in a later component (P300). Importantly, the pattern of data was remarkably similar in the two alphabets. Thus, these data offer empirical support for a universal (i.e., across alphabets) hierarchical account of letter processing in which the time course of letter processing in different scripts follows a similar trajectory from visual features to visual form independent of abstract representations. PMID:23806176

  10. Neural correlates of visual versus abstract letter processing in Roman and Arabic scripts.

    PubMed

    Carreiras, Manuel; Perea, Manuel; Gil-López, Cristina; Abu Mallouh, Reem; Salillas, Elena

    2013-11-01

    In alphabetic orthographies, letter identification is a critical process during the recognition of visually presented words. In the present experiment, we examined whether and when visual form influences letter processing in two very distinct alphabets (Roman and Arabic). Disentangling visual versus abstract letter representations was possible because letters in the Roman alphabet may look visually similar/dissimilar in lowercase and uppercase forms (e.g., c-C vs. r-R) and letters in the Arabic alphabet may look visually similar/dissimilar, depending on their position within a word (e.g., [Formula: see text] - [Formula: see text] vs. [Formula: see text] - [Formula: see text]). We employed a masked priming same-different matching task while ERPs were measured from individuals who had learned the two alphabets at an early age. Results revealed a prime-target relatedness effect dependent on visual form in early components (P/N150) and a more abstract relatedness effect in a later component (P300). Importantly, the pattern of data was remarkably similar in the two alphabets. Thus, these data offer empirical support for a universal (i.e., across alphabets) hierarchical account of letter processing in which the time course of letter processing in different scripts follows a similar trajectory from visual features to visual form independent of abstract representations. PMID:23806176

  11. Pocket Monster incident and low luminance visual stimuli: special reference to deep red flicker stimulation.

    PubMed

    Takahashi, T; Tsukahara, Y

    1998-12-01

    On the evening of 16 December 1997 approximately 700 people around the nation (mostly children) were rushed to hospitals and treated for seizure symptoms. The youngsters had been watching the vastly popular TV animated cartoon series Pocket Monsters (Pokemon). We designated those individuals as a main group, who presumably had simultaneous occurrence of visually induced seizures. Follow-up studies revealed that 5-10.4% of Pokemon viewers had various minor symptoms not requiring hospital treatment. We designated those as a subgroup. Due to an official report regarding the problematic TV scene as a low luminance, 12 Hz alternating red/blue stimulus, we attempted an accounting of the Pokemon incident, with regard to the main group in particular, on the basis of electroencephalographic activation by use of low luminance 15 Hz deep red flicker stimulation. In order to explain the entire Pokemon incident, including symptoms experienced by individuals of the subgroup, we considered the possibility that some healthy youngsters may have latent photosensitivity and we thought that such a sensitivity might be disclosed by use of low luminance deep red flicker stimulation which is more provocative of photoparoxysmal response than ordinary high luminance stroboscopic intermittent photic stimulation. For prevention of visually induced seizures by TV viewing, we stress that care should be taken to test not only red flicker but also flickering geometric pattern stimuli. PMID:9893306

  12. Pocket Monster incident and low luminance visual stimuli: special reference to deep red flicker stimulation.

    PubMed

    Takahashi, T; Tsukahara, Y

    1998-12-01

    On the evening of 16 December 1997 approximately 700 people around the nation (mostly children) were rushed to hospitals and treated for seizure symptoms. The youngsters had been watching the vastly popular TV animated cartoon series Pocket Monsters (Pokemon). We designated those individuals as a main group, who presumably had simultaneous occurrence of visually induced seizures. Follow-up studies revealed that 5-10.4% of Pokemon viewers had various minor symptoms not requiring hospital treatment. We designated those as a subgroup. Due to an official report regarding the problematic TV scene as a low luminance, 12 Hz alternating red/blue stimulus, we attempted an accounting of the Pokemon incident, with regard to the main group in particular, on the basis of electroencephalographic activation by use of low luminance 15 Hz deep red flicker stimulation. In order to explain the entire Pokemon incident, including symptoms experienced by individuals of the subgroup, we considered the possibility that some healthy youngsters may have latent photosensitivity and we thought that such a sensitivity might be disclosed by use of low luminance deep red flicker stimulation which is more provocative of photoparoxysmal response than ordinary high luminance stroboscopic intermittent photic stimulation. For prevention of visually induced seizures by TV viewing, we stress that care should be taken to test not only red flicker but also flickering geometric pattern stimuli.

  13. Dot comparison stimuli are not all alike: the effect of different visual controls on ANS measurement.

    PubMed

    Clayton, Sarah; Gilmore, Camilla; Inglis, Matthew

    2015-10-01

    The most common method of indexing Approximate Number System (ANS) acuity is to use a nonsymbolic dot comparison task. Currently there is no standard protocol for creating the dot array stimuli and it is unclear whether tasks that control for different visual cues, such as cumulative surface area and convex hull size, measure the same cognitive constructs. Here we investigated how the accuracy and reliability of magnitude judgements is influenced by visual controls through a comparison of performance on dot comparison trials created with two standard methods: the Panamath program and Gebuis & Reynvoet's script. Fifty-one adult participants completed blocks of trials employing images constructed using the two protocols twice to obtain a measure of immediate test-retest reliability. We found no significant correlation between participants' accuracy scores on trials created with the two protocols, suggesting that tasks employing these protocols may measure different cognitive constructs. Additionally, there were significant differences in the test-retest reliabilities for trials created with each protocol. Finally, strong congruency effects for convex hull size were found for both sets of protocol trials, which provides some clarification for conflicting results in the literature.

  14. Complexity of visual stimuli and non-linear EEG dynamics in humans.

    PubMed

    Müller, Viktor; Lutzenberger, Werner; Preissl, Hubert; Pulvermüller, Friedemann; Birbaumer, Niels

    2003-03-01

    The effects of stimulus complexity on the nonlinear electrical brain (EEG) dynamics were investigated in a sample of 24 healthy volunteers. Stimuli used were either a single mechanical low-friction pendulum with a periodic movement (temporal frequency about 1 Hz) or a double-pendulum with a chaotic movement, which were observed for 2-3 min in each case. The prediction that a more complex visual stimulus (double-pendulum) increases the dimensional complexity of brain activity as compared to a simple visual stimulus (single-pendulum), was confirmed by determination of pointwise correlation dimension. Further, there was a significant decrease of alpha power in the double-pendulum compared to a single-pendulum condition. Moreover, a correlation analysis showed a positive correlation between EEG complexity and beta power over the whole cortex in the single- and, above all, in the double-pendulum condition, and also a positive correlation between dimensional complexity and alpha power in the double-pendulum condition only, particularly in the brain regions responsible for the 'bottom-up' sustained attention processes. PMID:12589895

  15. Parallel processing of face and house stimuli by V1 and specialized visual areas: a magnetoencephalographic (MEG) study

    PubMed Central

    Shigihara, Yoshihito; Zeki, Semir

    2014-01-01

    We used easily distinguishable stimuli of faces and houses constituted from straight lines, with the aim of learning whether they activate V1 on the one hand, and the specialized areas that are critical for the processing of faces and houses on the other, with similar latencies. Eighteen subjects took part in the experiment, which used magnetoencephalography (MEG) coupled to analytical methods to detect the time course of the earliest responses which these stimuli provoke in these cortical areas. Both categories of stimuli activated V1 and areas of the visual cortex outside it at around 40 ms after stimulus onset, and the amplitude elicited by face stimuli was significantly larger than that elicited by house stimuli. These results suggest that “low-level” and “high-level” features of form stimuli are processed in parallel by V1 and visual areas outside it. Taken together with our previous results on the processing of simple geometric forms (Shgihara and Zeki, 2013; Shigihara and Zeki, 2014), the present ones reinforce the conclusion that parallel processing is an important component in the strategy used by the brain to process and construct forms. PMID:25426050

  16. A case report of an autistic boy. Selective responding to components of bidimensional visual and auditory stimuli.

    PubMed

    Edwards, J L; Shigley, R H; Edwards, R P

    1976-06-01

    A case study was reported in which a 9-year-old male autistic boy was initially trained to discriminate between two auditory stimuli and two visual stimuli. He was then tested for overselective responding to bidimensional combinations of the four stimuli. It was hypothesized that the overselectivity results reported in previous studies were partially a function of a procedure in which autistic children were reinforced for responding in the presence of a multidimensional stimulus complex and then tested with individual stimuli. The child in the present investigation, with the alternative procedure, did not demonstrate overselective responding. Two interpretations of the results were presented, neither of which was consistent with an overselectivity theory. Future research should delineate the specific conditions which produce overselective responding, and suggest methods to facilitate more adaptive responding of autistic children.

  17. V1 is not uniquely identified by polarity reversals of responses to upper and lower visual field stimuli

    PubMed Central

    Ales, Justin M.; Yates, Jacob L.; Norcia, Anthony M.

    2010-01-01

    The cruciform hypothesis states that if a visual evoked potential component originates in V1, then stimuli placed in the upper versus lower visual fields will generate responses with opposite polarity at the scalp. This diagnostic has been used by many studies as a definitive marker of V1 sources. To provide an empirical test of the validity of the cruciform hypothesis, we generated forward models of cortical areas V1, V2 and V3 that were based on realistic estimates of the 3-D shape of these areas and the shape and conductivity of the brain, skull and scalp. Functional MRI was used to identify the location of early visual areas and anatomical MRI data was used construct detailed cortical surface reconstructions and to generate boundary element method forward models of the electrical conductivity of each participant’s head. These two data sets for each subject were used to generate simulated scalp activity from the dorsal and ventral subdivisions of each visual area that correspond to the lower and upper visual field representations, respectively. The predicted topographies show that sources in V1 do not fully conform to the cruciform sign-reversal. Moreover, contrary to the model, retinotopic visual areas V2 and V3 show polarity reversals for upper and lower field stimuli. The presence of a response polarity inversion for upper versus lower field stimuli is therefore an insufficient criterion for identifying responses as having originated in V1. PMID:20488247

  18. Auditory Preferences of Young Children with and without Hearing Loss for Meaningful Auditory-Visual Compound Stimuli

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zupan, Barbra; Sussman, Joan E.

    2009-01-01

    Experiment 1 examined modality preferences in children and adults with normal hearing to combined auditory-visual stimuli. Experiment 2 compared modality preferences in children using cochlear implants participating in an auditory emphasized therapy approach to the children with normal hearing from Experiment 1. A second objective in both…

  19. Testing a Poisson Counter Model for Visual Identification of Briefly Presented, Mutually Confusable Single Stimuli in Pure Accuracy Tasks

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kyllingsbaek, Soren; Markussen, Bo; Bundesen, Claus

    2012-01-01

    The authors propose and test a simple model of the time course of visual identification of briefly presented, mutually confusable single stimuli in pure accuracy tasks. The model implies that during stimulus analysis, tentative categorizations that stimulus i belongs to category j are made at a constant Poisson rate, v(i, j). The analysis is…

  20. Time- and Space-Order Effects in Timed Discrimination of Brightness and Size of Paired Visual Stimuli

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Patching, Geoffrey R.; Englund, Mats P.; Hellstrom, Ake

    2012-01-01

    Despite the importance of both response probability and response time for testing models of choice, there is a dearth of chronometric studies examining systematic asymmetries that occur over time- and space-orders in the method of paired comparisons. In this study, systematic asymmetries in discriminating the magnitude of paired visual stimuli are…

  1. Responses of movement-sensitive visual interneurons to prey-like stimuli in the praying mantis Sphodromantis lineola (Burmeister).

    PubMed

    Gonka, M D; Laurie, T J; Prete, F R

    1999-11-01

    Previous behavioral work using both mechanical and computer-generated visual stimuli has demonstrated that mantids use a computational algorithm to recognize prey similar to that used by some amphibian predators: A stimulus elicits prey capture behavior if it falls within a perceptual envelope defined by five fundamental stimulus parameters: (1) overall size, (2) length of the leading edge, (3) contrast to the background, (4) location in the visual field, and (5) apparent speed. In this study, we recorded simultaneously from both cervical nerve cords of monocular Sphodromantis lineola while they viewed the same visual stimuli successfully used in the behavioral studies. Extracellular recordings showed three consistently proportioned amplitude classes of movement-elicited spikes in each cord and these were repeatedly and reliably identifiable across mantids. Overall, the movement-elicited activity in both cords was dominated by very large spikes suggesting the existence of several large, descending movement-sensitive interneurons projecting both ipsilaterally and contralaterally from the optic lobes. However, only the largest contralateral spikes occurred preferentially to prey-like stimuli, mirrored the behavioral response curves generated by S. lineola to the same visual stimuli, and displayed activity peaks that were correlated with the times at which the mantid emitted predatory strikes. PMID:10640785

  2. Attention to quantitative and configural properties of abstract visual patterns by children and adults.

    PubMed

    Mendelson, M J

    1984-10-01

    Students in grades 2, 4, 6, and college sorted abstract visual patterns that varied both in amount of contour and in the type of visual organization (unstructured, simple symmetries, multiple symmetries, and rotational organization). The subjects were told to put the patterns into rows so that all the patterns in a row were "alike in some way," with no limits placed either on the number of rows or on the number of patterns in a row. Second graders sorted mainly on the basis of amount of contour and less so with reference to multiple types of visual organization. Fourth and sixth graders used contour as a sorting criterion less than second graders; moreover, they sorted with reference to all types of visual structure. As a group, college students sorted exclusively on the basis of structure. The data were taken as evidence that children attend to both amount of contour and visual organization, but that attention to visual structure increases with age. PMID:6510055

  3. Using an abstract geometry in virtual reality to explore choice behaviour: visual flicker preferences in honeybees.

    PubMed

    Van De Poll, Matthew N; Zajaczkowski, Esmi L; Taylor, Gavin J; Srinivasan, Mandyam V; van Swinderen, Bruno

    2015-11-01

    Closed-loop paradigms provide an effective approach for studying visual choice behaviour and attention in small animals. Different flying and walking paradigms have been developed to investigate behavioural and neuronal responses to competing stimuli in insects such as bees and flies. However, the variety of stimulus choices that can be presented over one experiment is often limited. Current choice paradigms are mostly constrained as single binary choice scenarios that are influenced by the linear structure of classical conditioning paradigms. Here, we present a novel behavioural choice paradigm that allows animals to explore a closed geometry of interconnected binary choices by repeatedly selecting among competing objects, thereby revealing stimulus preferences in an historical context. We used our novel paradigm to investigate visual flicker preferences in honeybees (Apis mellifera) and found significant preferences for 20-25 Hz flicker and avoidance of higher (50-100 Hz) and lower (2-4 Hz) flicker frequencies. Similar results were found when bees were presented with three simultaneous choices instead of two, and when they were given the chance to select previously rejected choices. Our results show that honeybees can discriminate among different flicker frequencies and that their visual preferences are persistent even under different experimental conditions. Interestingly, avoided stimuli were more attractive if they were novel, suggesting that novelty salience can override innate preferences. Our recursive virtual reality environment provides a new approach to studying visual discrimination and choice behaviour in animals.

  4. Neural interactions between flicker-induced self-organized visual hallucinations and physical stimuli

    PubMed Central

    Billock, Vincent A.; Tsou, Brian H.

    2007-01-01

    Spontaneous pattern formation in cortical activity may have consequences for perception, but little is known about interactions between sensory-driven and self-organized cortical activity. To address this deficit, we explored the relationship between ordinary stimulus-controlled pattern perception and the autonomous hallucinatory geometrical pattern formation that occurs for unstructured visual stimulation (e.g., empty-field flicker). We found that flicker-induced hallucinations are biased by the presentation of adjacent geometrical stimuli; geometrical forms that map to cortical area V1 as orthogonal gratings are perceptually opponent in biasing hallucinations. Rotating fan blades and pulsating circular patterns are the most salient biased hallucinations. Apparent motion and fractal (1/f) noise are also effective in driving hallucinatory pattern formation (the latter is consistent with predictions of spatiotemporal pattern formation driven by stochastic resonance). The behavior of these percepts suggests that self-organized hallucinatory pattern formation in human vision is governed by the same cortical properties of localized processing, lateral inhibition, simultaneous contrast, and nonlinear retinotopic mapping that govern ordinary vision. PMID:17470794

  5. Real time unsupervised learning of visual stimuli in neuromorphic VLSI systems.

    PubMed

    Giulioni, Massimiliano; Corradi, Federico; Dante, Vittorio; del Giudice, Paolo

    2015-01-01

    Neuromorphic chips embody computational principles operating in the nervous system, into microelectronic devices. In this domain it is important to identify computational primitives that theory and experiments suggest as generic and reusable cognitive elements. One such element is provided by attractor dynamics in recurrent networks. Point attractors are equilibrium states of the dynamics (up to fluctuations), determined by the synaptic structure of the network; a 'basin' of attraction comprises all initial states leading to a given attractor upon relaxation, hence making attractor dynamics suitable to implement robust associative memory. The initial network state is dictated by the stimulus, and relaxation to the attractor state implements the retrieval of the corresponding memorized prototypical pattern. In a previous work we demonstrated that a neuromorphic recurrent network of spiking neurons and suitably chosen, fixed synapses supports attractor dynamics. Here we focus on learning: activating on-chip synaptic plasticity and using a theory-driven strategy for choosing network parameters, we show that autonomous learning, following repeated presentation of simple visual stimuli, shapes a synaptic connectivity supporting stimulus-selective attractors. Associative memory develops on chip as the result of the coupled stimulus-driven neural activity and ensuing synaptic dynamics, with no artificial separation between learning and retrieval phases. PMID:26463272

  6. Real time unsupervised learning of visual stimuli in neuromorphic VLSI systems

    PubMed Central

    Giulioni, Massimiliano; Corradi, Federico; Dante, Vittorio; del Giudice, Paolo

    2015-01-01

    Neuromorphic chips embody computational principles operating in the nervous system, into microelectronic devices. In this domain it is important to identify computational primitives that theory and experiments suggest as generic and reusable cognitive elements. One such element is provided by attractor dynamics in recurrent networks. Point attractors are equilibrium states of the dynamics (up to fluctuations), determined by the synaptic structure of the network; a ‘basin’ of attraction comprises all initial states leading to a given attractor upon relaxation, hence making attractor dynamics suitable to implement robust associative memory. The initial network state is dictated by the stimulus, and relaxation to the attractor state implements the retrieval of the corresponding memorized prototypical pattern. In a previous work we demonstrated that a neuromorphic recurrent network of spiking neurons and suitably chosen, fixed synapses supports attractor dynamics. Here we focus on learning: activating on-chip synaptic plasticity and using a theory-driven strategy for choosing network parameters, we show that autonomous learning, following repeated presentation of simple visual stimuli, shapes a synaptic connectivity supporting stimulus-selective attractors. Associative memory develops on chip as the result of the coupled stimulus-driven neural activity and ensuing synaptic dynamics, with no artificial separation between learning and retrieval phases. PMID:26463272

  7. Object-position binding in visual short-term memory for sequentially presented unfamiliar stimuli.

    PubMed

    Sapkota, Raju P; Pardhan, Shahina; van der Linde, Ian

    2011-01-01

    The effect of spatial position on visual short-term memory (VSTM) for sequentially presented objects has been investigated relatively little, despite the fact that vision in natural environments is characterised by frequent changes in object position and gaze location. We investigated the effect of reusing previously examined spatial positions on VSTM for object appearance. Observers performed a yes-no recognition task following a memory display comprising briefly presented 1/f noise discs (ie possessing spectral properties akin to natural images) shown sequentially at random coordinates. At test, single stimuli were presented either at original spatial positions, new positions, or at a fixed central position. Results, interpreted in terms of appearance and position preview effects, indicate that, where original spatial positions were reused at test, memory performance was elevated by more than 25%, despite that spatial position was task-irrelevant (in the sense that it could not be used to facilitate a correct response per se). This study generalises object-spatial-position binding theory to a sequential display scenario in which the influences of extrafoveal processing, spatial context cues, and long-term memory support were minimised, thereby eliminating the hypothesis that object priming is the principal cause of the 'same-position advantage' in VSTM.

  8. Real time unsupervised learning of visual stimuli in neuromorphic VLSI systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Giulioni, Massimiliano; Corradi, Federico; Dante, Vittorio; Del Giudice, Paolo

    2015-10-01

    Neuromorphic chips embody computational principles operating in the nervous system, into microelectronic devices. In this domain it is important to identify computational primitives that theory and experiments suggest as generic and reusable cognitive elements. One such element is provided by attractor dynamics in recurrent networks. Point attractors are equilibrium states of the dynamics (up to fluctuations), determined by the synaptic structure of the network; a ‘basin’ of attraction comprises all initial states leading to a given attractor upon relaxation, hence making attractor dynamics suitable to implement robust associative memory. The initial network state is dictated by the stimulus, and relaxation to the attractor state implements the retrieval of the corresponding memorized prototypical pattern. In a previous work we demonstrated that a neuromorphic recurrent network of spiking neurons and suitably chosen, fixed synapses supports attractor dynamics. Here we focus on learning: activating on-chip synaptic plasticity and using a theory-driven strategy for choosing network parameters, we show that autonomous learning, following repeated presentation of simple visual stimuli, shapes a synaptic connectivity supporting stimulus-selective attractors. Associative memory develops on chip as the result of the coupled stimulus-driven neural activity and ensuing synaptic dynamics, with no artificial separation between learning and retrieval phases.

  9. A unified software framework for deriving, visualizing, and exploring abstraction networks for ontologies.

    PubMed

    Ochs, Christopher; Geller, James; Perl, Yehoshua; Musen, Mark A

    2016-08-01

    Software tools play a critical role in the development and maintenance of biomedical ontologies. One important task that is difficult without software tools is ontology quality assurance. In previous work, we have introduced different kinds of abstraction networks to provide a theoretical foundation for ontology quality assurance tools. Abstraction networks summarize the structure and content of ontologies. One kind of abstraction network that we have used repeatedly to support ontology quality assurance is the partial-area taxonomy. It summarizes structurally and semantically similar concepts within an ontology. However, the use of partial-area taxonomies was ad hoc and not generalizable. In this paper, we describe the Ontology Abstraction Framework (OAF), a unified framework and software system for deriving, visualizing, and exploring partial-area taxonomy abstraction networks. The OAF includes support for various ontology representations (e.g., OWL and SNOMED CT's relational format). A Protégé plugin for deriving "live partial-area taxonomies" is demonstrated.

  10. Illusory movement of stationary stimuli in the visual periphery: evidence for a strong centrifugal prior in motion processing.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Ruyuan; Kwon, Oh-Sang; Tadin, Duje

    2013-03-01

    Visual input is remarkably diverse. Certain sensory inputs are more probable than others, mirroring statistical regularities of the visual environment. The visual system exploits many of these regularities, resulting, on average, in better inferences about visual stimuli. However, by incorporating prior knowledge into perceptual decisions, visual processing can also result in perceptions that do not match sensory inputs. Such perceptual biases can often reveal unique insights into underlying mechanisms and computations. For example, a prior assumption that objects move slowly can explain a wide range of motion phenomena. The prior on slow speed is usually rationalized by its match with visual input, which typically includes stationary or slow moving objects. However, this only holds for foveal and parafoveal stimulation. The visual periphery tends to be exposed to faster motions, which are biased toward centrifugal directions. Thus, if prior assumptions derive from experience, peripheral motion processing should be biased toward centrifugal speeds. Here, in experiments with human participants, we support this hypothesis and report a novel visual illusion where stationary objects in the visual periphery are perceived as moving centrifugally, while objects moving as fast as 7°/s toward fovea are perceived as stationary. These behavioral results were quantitatively explained by a Bayesian observer that has a strong centrifugal prior. This prior is consistent with both the prevalence of centrifugal motions in the visual periphery and a centrifugal bias of direction tuning in cortical area MT, supporting the notion that visual processing mirrors its input statistics.

  11. Abstract Rule Learning for Visual Sequences in 8- and 11-Month-Olds

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Johnson, Scott P.; Fernandes, Keith J.; Frank, Michael C.; Kirkham, Natasha; Marcus, Gary; Rabagliati, Hugh; Slemmer, Jonathan A.

    2009-01-01

    The experiments reported here investigated the development of a fundamental component of cognition: to recognize and generalize abstract relations. Infants were presented with simple rule-governed patterned sequences of visual shapes (ABB, AAB, and ABA) that could be discriminated from differences in the position of the repeated element (late,…

  12. Concreteness effects revisited: the influence of dynamic visual noise on memory for concrete and abstract words.

    PubMed

    Parker, Andrew; Dagnall, Neil

    2009-05-01

    Two experiments are presented that investigate the effects of dynamic visual noise (DVN) on memory for concrete and abstract words. Memory for concrete words is typically superior to that of abstract words and is referred to as the concreteness effect. DVN is a procedure that has been demonstrated to interfere selectively with visual working memory and the generation of images from long-term memory. It was reasoned that if concreteness effects arise because of the ability of the latter to activate visual representations, then DVN should selectively impair memory for concrete words. Experiment 1 found DVN to selectively reduce free recall of concrete words. Experiment 2 investigated recognition memory and found DVN to reduce memory accuracy and remember responses, while increasing know responses to concrete words.

  13. Core networks for visual-concrete and abstract thought content: a brain electric microstate analysis.

    PubMed

    Lehmann, Dietrich; Pascual-Marqui, Roberto D; Strik, Werner K; Koenig, Thomas

    2010-01-01

    Commonality of activation of spontaneously forming and stimulus-induced mental representations is an often made but rarely tested assumption in neuroscience. In a conjunction analysis of two earlier studies, brain electric activity during visual-concrete and abstract thoughts was studied. The conditions were: in study 1, spontaneous stimulus-independent thinking (post-hoc, visual imagery or abstract thought were identified); in study 2, reading of single nouns ranking high or low on a visual imagery scale. In both studies, subjects' tasks were similar: when prompted, they had to recall the last thought (study 1) or the last word (study 2). In both studies, subjects had no instruction to classify or to visually imagine their thoughts, and accordingly were not aware of the studies' aim. Brain electric data were analyzed into functional topographic brain images (using LORETA) of the last microstate before the prompt (study 1) and of the word-type discriminating event-related microstate after word onset (study 2). Conjunction analysis across the two studies yielded commonality of activation of core networks for abstract thought content in left anterior superior regions, and for visual-concrete thought content in right temporal-posterior inferior regions. The results suggest that two different core networks are automatedly activated when abstract or visual-concrete information, respectively, enters working memory, without a subject task or instruction about the two classes of information, and regardless of internal or external origin, and of input modality. These core machineries of working memory thus are invariant to source or modality of input when treating the two types of information.

  14. Auditory Attention to Frequency and Time: An Analogy to Visual Local-Global Stimuli

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Justus, Timothy; List, Alexandra

    2005-01-01

    Two priming experiments demonstrated exogenous attentional persistence to the fundamental auditory dimensions of frequency (Experiment 1) and time (Experiment 2). In a divided-attention task, participants responded to an independent dimension, the identification of three-tone sequence patterns, for both prime and probe stimuli. The stimuli were…

  15. Rescuing Stimuli from Invisibility: Inducing a Momentary Release from Visual Masking with Pre-Target Entrainment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mathewson, Kyle E.; Fabiani, Monica; Gratton, Gabriele; Beck, Diane M.; Lleras, Alejandro

    2010-01-01

    At near-threshold levels of stimulation, identical stimulus parameters can result in very different phenomenal experiences. Can we manipulate which stimuli reach consciousness? Here we show that consciousness of otherwise masked stimuli can be experimentally induced by sensory entrainment. We preceded a backward-masked stimulus with a series of…

  16. Contrast-dependent OFF-dominance in cat primary visual cortex facilitates discrimination of stimuli with natural contrast statistics.

    PubMed

    Liu, Kefei; Yao, Haishan

    2014-06-01

    Both theoretical and experimental studies suggest that response properties in the visual system are shaped by signals in the natural environment. Recent studies showed that, in the primary visual cortex (V1), neurons preferring light decrements (OFF stimuli) outnumber those preferring light increments (ON stimuli). However, it is not clear whether the OFF-dominance in V1 neurons is related to the contrast statistics in natural images. By analysing the distribution of negative and positive contrasts in natural images at several spatial scales, we showed that optimal coding of the natural contrast signals would lead to a contrast-dependent OFF-dominant response, with a stronger degree of OFF-dominance at a higher contrast. Using bright and dark stimuli at various contrast levels to measure the receptive fields of neurons in cat V1, we found an increasing degree of OFF-dominance of the neuronal population as the contrast was increased. By modeling receptive fields exhibiting OFF- and ON-dominance, we found that contrast-dependent OFF-dominance facilitated the discrimination of stimuli with natural contrast distribution. Thus, by matching contrast-dependent OFF-dominance to the statistics of contrast distribution in natural images, V1 neurons may better discriminate contrast information in natural scenes.

  17. Suppression to visual, auditory and gustatory stimuli habituates normally in rats with excitotoxic lesions of the perirhinal cortex

    PubMed Central

    Robinson, Jasper; Sanderson, David J.; Aggleton, John P.; Jenkins, Trisha A.

    2014-01-01

    In 3 habituation experiments, rats with excitotoxic lesions of the perirhinal cortex were found to be indistinguishable from control rats. Two of the habituation experiments examined the habituation of suppression of responding on an appetitive, instrumental baseline. One of those experiments used stimuli selected from the visual modality (lights), the other used auditory stimuli. The third experiment examined habituation of suppression of novel-flavored water consumption. In contrast to the null results on the habituation experiments, the perirhinal lesions disrupted transfer performance on a configural, visual discrimination, indicating the behavioral effectiveness of the lesions. Implications for comparator theories of habituation are considered and we conclude that others’ demonstrations of the sensitivity of object recognition to perirhinal cortex damage is not the result of standard habituation. PMID:20001107

  18. Visual Sexual Stimuli-Cue or Reward? A Perspective for Interpreting Brain Imaging Findings on Human Sexual Behaviors.

    PubMed

    Gola, Mateusz; Wordecha, Małgorzata; Marchewka, Artur; Sescousse, Guillaume

    2016-01-01

    There is an increasing number of neuroimaging studies using visual sexual stimuli (VSS), especially within the emerging field of research on compulsive sexual behaviors (CSB). A central question in this field is whether behaviors such as excessive pornography consumption share common brain mechanisms with widely studied substance and behavioral addictions. Depending on how VSS are conceptualized, different predictions can be formulated within the frameworks of Reinforcement Learning or Incentive Salience Theory, where a crucial distinction is made between conditioned and unconditioned stimuli (related to reward anticipation vs. reward consumption, respectively). Surveying 40 recent human neuroimaging studies we show existing ambiguity about the conceptualization of VSS. Therefore, we feel that it is important to address the question of whether VSS should be considered as conditioned stimuli (cue) or unconditioned stimuli (reward). Here we present our own perspective, which is that in most laboratory settings VSS play a role of reward, as evidenced by: (1) experience of pleasure while watching VSS, possibly accompanied by genital reaction; (2) reward-related brain activity correlated with these pleasurable feelings in response to VSS; (3) a willingness to exert effort to view VSS similarly as for other rewarding stimuli such as money; and (4) conditioning for cues predictive of VSS. We hope that this perspective article will initiate a scientific discussion on this important and overlooked topic and increase attention for appropriate interpretations of results of human neuroimaging studies using VSS. PMID:27574507

  19. Visual Sexual Stimuli-Cue or Reward? A Perspective for Interpreting Brain Imaging Findings on Human Sexual Behaviors.

    PubMed

    Gola, Mateusz; Wordecha, Małgorzata; Marchewka, Artur; Sescousse, Guillaume

    2016-01-01

    There is an increasing number of neuroimaging studies using visual sexual stimuli (VSS), especially within the emerging field of research on compulsive sexual behaviors (CSB). A central question in this field is whether behaviors such as excessive pornography consumption share common brain mechanisms with widely studied substance and behavioral addictions. Depending on how VSS are conceptualized, different predictions can be formulated within the frameworks of Reinforcement Learning or Incentive Salience Theory, where a crucial distinction is made between conditioned and unconditioned stimuli (related to reward anticipation vs. reward consumption, respectively). Surveying 40 recent human neuroimaging studies we show existing ambiguity about the conceptualization of VSS. Therefore, we feel that it is important to address the question of whether VSS should be considered as conditioned stimuli (cue) or unconditioned stimuli (reward). Here we present our own perspective, which is that in most laboratory settings VSS play a role of reward, as evidenced by: (1) experience of pleasure while watching VSS, possibly accompanied by genital reaction; (2) reward-related brain activity correlated with these pleasurable feelings in response to VSS; (3) a willingness to exert effort to view VSS similarly as for other rewarding stimuli such as money; and (4) conditioning for cues predictive of VSS. We hope that this perspective article will initiate a scientific discussion on this important and overlooked topic and increase attention for appropriate interpretations of results of human neuroimaging studies using VSS.

  20. A low-cost and versatile system for projecting wide-field visual stimuli within fMRI scanners

    PubMed Central

    Greco, V.; Frijia, F.; Mikellidou, K.; Montanaro, D.; Farini, A.; D’Uva, M.; Poggi, P.; Pucci, M.; Sordini, A.; Morrone, M. C.; Burr, D. C.

    2016-01-01

    We have constructed and tested a custom-made magnetic-imaging-compatible visual projection system designed to project on a very wide visual field (~80°). A standard projector was modified with a coupling lens, projecting images into the termination of an image fiber. The other termination of the fiber was placed in the 3-T scanner room with a projection lens, which projected the images relayed by the fiber onto a screen over the head coil, viewed by a participant wearing magnifying goggles. To validate the system, wide-field stimuli were presented in order to identify retinotopic visual areas. The results showed that this low-cost and versatile optical system may be a valuable tool to map visual areas in the brain that process peripheral receptive fields. PMID:26092392

  1. Multisensory interactions elicited by audiovisual stimuli presented peripherally in a visual attention task: a behavioral and event-related potential study in humans.

    PubMed

    Wu, Jinglong; Li, Qi; Bai, Ou; Touge, Tetsuo

    2009-12-01

    We applied behavioral and event-related potential measurements to study human multisensory interactions induced by audiovisual (AV) stimuli presented peripherally in a visual attention task in which an irrelevant auditory stimulus occasionally accompanied the visual stimulus. A stream of visual, auditory, and AV stimuli was randomly presented to the left or right side of the subjects; subjects covertly attended to the visual stimuli on either the left or right side and promptly responded to visual targets on that side. Behavioral results showed that responses to AV stimuli were faster and more accurate than those to visual stimuli only. Three event-related potential components related to AV interactions were identified: (1) over the right temporal area, approximately 200 to 220 milliseconds; (2) over the centromedial area, approximately 290 to 310 milliseconds; and (3) over the left and right ventral temporal area, approximately 290 to 310 milliseconds. We found that these interaction effects occurred slightly later than those reported in previously published AV interaction studies in which AV stimuli were presented centrally. Our results suggest that the retinotopic location of stimuli affects AV interactions occurring at later stages of cognitive processing in response to a visual attention task.

  2. Exploring the Use of Sensorial LTP/LTD-Like Stimulation to Modulate Human Performance for Complex Visual Stimuli.

    PubMed

    Pegado, Felipe; Vankrunkelsven, Hendrik; Steyaert, Jean; Boets, Bart; Op de Beeck, Hans

    2016-01-01

    Is it possible to passively induce visual learning/unlearning in humans for complex stimuli such as faces? We addressed this question in a series of behavioral studies using passive visual stimulation (flickering of faces at specific temporal frequencies) inspired by well-known synaptic mechanisms of learning: long-term potentiation (LTP) vs long-term depression (LTD). We administered a face identity change detection task before and after a passive stimulation protocol to test for potential changes in visual performance. First, with bilateral stimulation, subjects undergoing high-frequency LTP-like stimulation outperformed those submitted to low-frequency LTD-like stimulation despite equivalent baseline performance (exp. 1). Second, unilateral stimulation replicated the differential modulation of performance, but in a hemifield-specific way (exp. 2). Third, for both stimulation groups, a sudden temporary drop in performance on the stimulated side immediately after the stimulation, followed by progressive recovering, can suggest either 'visual fatigue' or 'face adaptation' effects due to the stimulation. Fourth, we tested the life-time of these modulatory effects, revealing they vanish after one hour delay (exp. 3). Fifth, a control study (exp. 4) using low-level visual stimuli also failed to show longer-term effects of sensory stimulation, despite reports of strong effects in the literature. Future studies should determine the necessary and sufficient conditions enabling robust long-term modulation of visual performance using this technique. This step is required to consider further use in fundamental research (e.g., to study neural circuits involved in selective visual processing) and potential educational or clinical applications (e.g., inhibiting socially-irrelevant aspects of face processing in autism).

  3. Exploring the Use of Sensorial LTP/LTD-Like Stimulation to Modulate Human Performance for Complex Visual Stimuli

    PubMed Central

    Pegado, Felipe; Vankrunkelsven, Hendrik; Steyaert, Jean; Boets, Bart; Op de Beeck, Hans

    2016-01-01

    Is it possible to passively induce visual learning/unlearning in humans for complex stimuli such as faces? We addressed this question in a series of behavioral studies using passive visual stimulation (flickering of faces at specific temporal frequencies) inspired by well-known synaptic mechanisms of learning: long-term potentiation (LTP) vs long-term depression (LTD). We administered a face identity change detection task before and after a passive stimulation protocol to test for potential changes in visual performance. First, with bilateral stimulation, subjects undergoing high-frequency LTP-like stimulation outperformed those submitted to low-frequency LTD-like stimulation despite equivalent baseline performance (exp. 1). Second, unilateral stimulation replicated the differential modulation of performance, but in a hemifield-specific way (exp. 2). Third, for both stimulation groups, a sudden temporary drop in performance on the stimulated side immediately after the stimulation, followed by progressive recovering, can suggest either ‘visual fatigue’ or ‘face adaptation’ effects due to the stimulation. Fourth, we tested the life-time of these modulatory effects, revealing they vanish after one hour delay (exp. 3). Fifth, a control study (exp. 4) using low-level visual stimuli also failed to show longer-term effects of sensory stimulation, despite reports of strong effects in the literature. Future studies should determine the necessary and sufficient conditions enabling robust long-term modulation of visual performance using this technique. This step is required to consider further use in fundamental research (e.g., to study neural circuits involved in selective visual processing) and potential educational or clinical applications (e.g., inhibiting socially-irrelevant aspects of face processing in autism). PMID:27341210

  4. Responses of Descending Visually-Sensitive Neurons in the Hawkmoth, Manduca sexta, to Three-Dimensional Flower-Like Stimuli.

    PubMed Central

    Sprayberry, Jordanna D. H.

    2009-01-01

    Hawkmoths rely on vision to track moving flowers during hovering-feeding bouts. Visually guided flight behaviors require a sensorimotor transformation, where motion information processed by the optic ganglia ultimately modifies motor axon activity. While a great deal is known about motion processing in the optic lobes of insects, there has been far less exploration into the visual information available to flight motor axons. Visual information recorded at this stage has likely arisen from multiple visual pathways, and has potentially been modified by outside sensory information. As a first step, understanding the sensorimotor transformation from transduction of moving flower signals to active flower tracking behavior requires that the visual information available to the thoracic flight control centers be assayed. This paper investigated the response of descending visually sensitive neurons in the cervical connectives of the hawkmoth, Manduca sexta L. (Lepidoptera: Sphingidae), to flower-like stimuli. Because flower structure lends itself to oscillatory (vibratory) motion, the stimuli used in these experiments were discs oscillating in each axis of motion (horizontal, vertical, and looming). Object-sensitive descending-neurons (OSDNs) respond to multiple directions of object motion and do not clearly sort into classes of directional tuning. The broad spatial distribution of directional sensitivities exhibited by OSDNs indicates that the direction of object motion may be encoded on a population scale. Although OSDNs exhibit broad frequency response curves, over the range of frequencies that M. sexta are able to track (0–2 Hz) OSDNs exhibit monotonically increasing response. Additionally, OSDNs respond to discs oscillating at frequencies as high at 6 Hz, indicating that the visual information being sent to thoracic motor control centers is not likely the limiting factor in flower tracking ability. PMID:19611250

  5. Exploring the Use of Sensorial LTP/LTD-Like Stimulation to Modulate Human Performance for Complex Visual Stimuli.

    PubMed

    Pegado, Felipe; Vankrunkelsven, Hendrik; Steyaert, Jean; Boets, Bart; Op de Beeck, Hans

    2016-01-01

    Is it possible to passively induce visual learning/unlearning in humans for complex stimuli such as faces? We addressed this question in a series of behavioral studies using passive visual stimulation (flickering of faces at specific temporal frequencies) inspired by well-known synaptic mechanisms of learning: long-term potentiation (LTP) vs long-term depression (LTD). We administered a face identity change detection task before and after a passive stimulation protocol to test for potential changes in visual performance. First, with bilateral stimulation, subjects undergoing high-frequency LTP-like stimulation outperformed those submitted to low-frequency LTD-like stimulation despite equivalent baseline performance (exp. 1). Second, unilateral stimulation replicated the differential modulation of performance, but in a hemifield-specific way (exp. 2). Third, for both stimulation groups, a sudden temporary drop in performance on the stimulated side immediately after the stimulation, followed by progressive recovering, can suggest either 'visual fatigue' or 'face adaptation' effects due to the stimulation. Fourth, we tested the life-time of these modulatory effects, revealing they vanish after one hour delay (exp. 3). Fifth, a control study (exp. 4) using low-level visual stimuli also failed to show longer-term effects of sensory stimulation, despite reports of strong effects in the literature. Future studies should determine the necessary and sufficient conditions enabling robust long-term modulation of visual performance using this technique. This step is required to consider further use in fundamental research (e.g., to study neural circuits involved in selective visual processing) and potential educational or clinical applications (e.g., inhibiting socially-irrelevant aspects of face processing in autism). PMID:27341210

  6. Visual Percepts in the Cases of Binocular and Monocular Viewing Stabilized Test Objects, Ganzfeld Stimuli, and Prolonged Afterimages.

    PubMed

    Rozhkova, Galina I; Nikolaev, Petr P

    2015-01-01

    A thorough analysis of the literature on retinal image stabilization, as well as our own experimental data, present evidence that Yarbus's concept, implying inevitable and irreversible fading of a visible image evoked by stabilized retinal stimulus of any size, color, and luminance in 1 to 3 s after its onset, is not valid in a general case. It has been demonstrated that, even with Yarbus's stabilization techniques, the lifetime of visible images varies from fractions of a second to the whole stimulus duration-up to 30 min in our experiments-depending on many factors: monocular or binocular viewing, stimulus parameters, characteristics of subjects, and so forth. The dynamics of perceived images is determined mainly by the processes at the higher levels of the visual system. In the cases of such unusual visual stimuli as stabilized retinal images, it is problematic for the visual brain to find their proper interpretations in terms of everyday natural experience. Usually, the responses of retinal units are determined by three types of coexisting images: (a) the optical projections of external objects, (b) shadows of the blood vessels and other internal eye structures, (c) virtual patterns caused by the traces of previous stimuli. A task of the visual system is to recognize and visualize only external objects separating their projections from all the entoptic images of the two remaining types. To implement separation, visual brain employs a number of approaches--in particular, the eye movements that cause sliding over the retina but only the projection of the external objects. This means that the peculiar phenomena observed in the cases of stabilized retinal images can be determined not by invariability of such stimuli per se but rather by the fact that stabilization eliminates a powerful cue helping to identify the retinal images belonging to the external objects, thereby increasing the probability to treat them as the entoptic ones which should be ignored or

  7. Intact Visual Discrimination of Complex and Feature-Ambiguous Stimuli in the Absence of Perirhinal Cortex

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Squire, Larry R.; Levy, Daniel A.; Shrager, Yael

    2005-01-01

    The perirhinal cortex is known to be important for memory, but there has recently been interest in the possibility that it might also be involved in visual perceptual functions. In four experiments, we assessed visual discrimination ability and visual discrimination learning in severely amnesic patients with large medial temporal lobe lesions that…

  8. A unified software framework for deriving, visualizing, and exploring abstraction networks for ontologies.

    PubMed

    Ochs, Christopher; Geller, James; Perl, Yehoshua; Musen, Mark A

    2016-08-01

    Software tools play a critical role in the development and maintenance of biomedical ontologies. One important task that is difficult without software tools is ontology quality assurance. In previous work, we have introduced different kinds of abstraction networks to provide a theoretical foundation for ontology quality assurance tools. Abstraction networks summarize the structure and content of ontologies. One kind of abstraction network that we have used repeatedly to support ontology quality assurance is the partial-area taxonomy. It summarizes structurally and semantically similar concepts within an ontology. However, the use of partial-area taxonomies was ad hoc and not generalizable. In this paper, we describe the Ontology Abstraction Framework (OAF), a unified framework and software system for deriving, visualizing, and exploring partial-area taxonomy abstraction networks. The OAF includes support for various ontology representations (e.g., OWL and SNOMED CT's relational format). A Protégé plugin for deriving "live partial-area taxonomies" is demonstrated. PMID:27345947

  9. Visual response time to colored stimuli in peripheral retina - Evidence for binocular summation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Haines, R. F.

    1977-01-01

    Simple onset response time (RT) experiments, previously shown to exhibit binocular summation effects for white stimuli along the horizontal meridian, were performed for red and green stimuli along 5 oblique meridians. Binocular RT was significantly shorter than monocular RT for a 45-min-diameter spot of red, green, or white light within eccentricities of about 50 deg from the fovea. Relatively large meridian differences were noted that appear to be due to the degree to which the images fall on corresponding retinal areas.

  10. Characterization of lobula giant neurons responsive to visual stimuli that elicit escape behaviors in the crab Chasmagnathus.

    PubMed

    Medan, Violeta; Oliva, Damián; Tomsic, Daniel

    2007-10-01

    In the grapsid crab Chasmagnathus, a visual danger stimulus elicits a strong escape response that diminishes rapidly on stimulus repetition. This behavioral modification can persist for several days as a result of the formation of an associative memory. We have previously shown that a generic group of large motion-sensitive neurons from the lobula of the crab respond to visual stimuli and accurately reflect the escape performance. Additional evidence indicates that these neurons play a key role in visual memory and in the decision to initiate an escape. Although early studies recognized that the group of lobula giant (LG) neurons consisted of different classes of motion-sensitive cells, a distinction between these classes has been lacking. Here, we recorded in vivo the responses of individual LG neurons to a wide range of visual stimuli presented in different segments of the animal's visual field. Physiological characterizations were followed by intracellular dye injections, which permitted comparison of the functional and morphological features of each cell. All LG neurons consisted of large tangential arborizations in the lobula with axons projecting toward the midbrain. Functionally, these cells proved to be more sensitive to single objects than to flow field motion. Despite these commonalities, clear differences in morphology and physiology allowed us to identify four distinct classes of LG neurons. These results will permit analysis of the role of each neuronal type for visually guided behaviors and will allow us to address specific questions on the neuronal plasticity of LGs that underlie the well-recognized memory model of the crab.

  11. Stress Sensitive Healthy Females Show Less Left Amygdala Activation in Response to Withdrawal-Related Visual Stimuli under Passive Viewing Conditions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Baeken, Chris; Van Schuerbeek, Peter; De Raedt, Rudi; Vanderhasselt, Marie-Anne; De Mey, Johan; Bossuyt, Axel; Luypaert, Robert

    2012-01-01

    The amygdalae are key players in the processing of a variety of emotional stimuli. Especially aversive visual stimuli have been reported to attract attention and activate the amygdalae. However, as it has been argued that passively viewing withdrawal-related images could attenuate instead of activate amygdalae neuronal responses, its role under…

  12. Apparent time interval of visual stimuli is compressed during fast hand movement.

    PubMed

    Yokosaka, Takumi; Kuroki, Scinob; Nishida, Shin'ya; Watanabe, Junji

    2015-01-01

    The influence of body movements on visual time perception is receiving increased attention. Past studies showed apparent expansion of visual time before and after the execution of hand movements and apparent compression of visual time during the execution of eye movements. Here we examined whether the estimation of sub-second time intervals between visual events is expanded, compressed, or unaffected during the execution of hand movements. The results show that hand movements, at least the fast ones, reduced the apparent time interval between visual events. A control experiment indicated that the apparent time compression was not produced by the participants' involuntary eye movements during the hand movements. These results, together with earlier findings, suggest hand movement can change apparent visual time either in a compressive way or in an expansive way, depending on the relative timing between the hand movement and visual stimulus. PMID:25853892

  13. Affective Overload: The Effect of Emotive Visual Stimuli on Target Vocabulary Retrieval

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Çetin, Yakup; Griffiths, Carol; Özel, Zeynep Ebrar Yetkiner; Kinay, Hüseyin

    2016-01-01

    There has been considerable interest in cognitive load in recent years, but the effect of affective load and its relationship to mental functioning has not received as much attention. In order to investigate the effects of affective stimuli on cognitive function as manifest in the ability to remember foreign language vocabulary, two groups of…

  14. Language experience shapes early electrophysiological responses to visual stimuli: the effects of writing system, stimulus length, and presentation duration.

    PubMed

    Xue, Gui; Jiang, Ting; Chen, Chuansheng; Dong, Qi

    2008-02-15

    How language experience affects visual word recognition has been a topic of intense interest. Using event-related potentials (ERPs), the present study compared the early electrophysiological responses (i.e., N1) to familiar and unfamiliar writings under different conditions. Thirteen native Chinese speakers (with English as their second language) were recruited to passively view four types of scripts: Chinese (familiar logographic writings), English (familiar alphabetic writings), Korean Hangul (unfamiliar logographic writings), and Tibetan (unfamiliar alphabetic writings). Stimuli also differed in lexicality (words vs. non-words, for familiar writings only), length (characters/letters vs. words), and presentation duration (100 ms vs. 750 ms). We found no significant differences between words and non-words, and the effect of language experience (familiar vs. unfamiliar) was significantly modulated by stimulus length and writing system, and to a less degree, by presentation duration. That is, the language experience effect (i.e., a stronger N1 response to familiar writings than to unfamiliar writings) was significant only for alphabetic letters, but not for alphabetic and logographic words. The difference between Chinese characters and unfamiliar logographic characters was significant under the condition of short presentation duration, but not under the condition of long presentation duration. Long stimuli elicited a stronger N1 response than did short stimuli, but this effect was significantly attenuated for familiar writings. These results suggest that N1 response might not reliably differentiate familiar and unfamiliar writings. More importantly, our results suggest that N1 is modulated by visual, linguistic, and task factors, which has important implications for the visual expertise hypothesis.

  15. Visual analysis of large heterogeneous social networks by semantic and structural abstraction.

    PubMed

    Shen, Zeqian; Ma, Kwan-Liu; Eliassi-Rad, Tina

    2006-01-01

    Social network analysis is an active area of study beyond sociology. It uncovers the invisible relationships between actors in a network and provides understanding of social processes and behaviors. It has become an important technique in a variety of application areas such as the Web, organizational studies, and homeland security. This paper presents a visual analytics tool, OntoVis, for understanding large, heterogeneous social networks, in which nodes and links could represent different concepts and relations, respectively. These concepts and relations are related through an ontology (also known as a schema). OntoVis is named such because it uses information in the ontology associated with a social network to semantically prune a large, heterogeneous network. In addition to semantic abstraction, OntoVis also allows users to do structural abstraction and importance filtering to make large networks manageable and to facilitate analytic reasoning. All these unique capabilities of OntoVis are illustrated with several case studies.

  16. Visual Exploration of Three-dimensional Gene Expression Using Physical Views and Linked Abstract Views

    PubMed Central

    Weber, Gunther H.; Rübel, Oliver; Huang, Min-Yu; DePace, Angela H.; Fowlkes, Charless C.; Keränen, Soile V. E.; Luengo Hendriks, Cris L.; Hagen, Hans; Knowles, David W.; Malik, Jitendra; Biggin, Mark D.; Hamann, Bernd

    2011-01-01

    During animal development, complex patterns of gene expression provide positional information within the embryo. To better understand the underlying gene regulatory networks, the Berkeley Drosophila Transcription Network Project (BDTNP) has developed methods that support quantitative computational analysis of three-dimensional (3D) gene expression in early Drosophila embryos at cellular resolution. We introduce PointCloudXplore, an interactive visualization tool that supports visual exploration of relationships between different genes’ expression using a combination of established visualization techniques. Two aspects of gene expression are of particular interest: (i) gene expression patterns defined by the spatial locations of cells expressing a gene, and (ii) relationships between the expression levels of multiple genes. PointCloudXplore provides users with two corresponding classes of data views: (i) Physical Views based on the spatial relationships of cells in the embryo, and (ii) Abstract Views that discard spatial information and plot expression levels of multiple genes with respect to each other. Cell Selectors highlight data associated with subsets of embryo cells within a View. Using linking, these selected cells can be viewed in multiple representations. We describe PCX as a 3D gene expression visualization tool and provide examples of how it has been used by BDTNP biologists to generate new hypotheses. PMID:19407353

  17. Interest in Babies Negatively Predicts Testosterone Responses to Sexual Visual Stimuli Among Heterosexual Young Men.

    PubMed

    Zilioli, Samuele; Ponzi, Davide; Henry, Andrea; Kubicki, Konrad; Nickels, Nora; Wilson, M Claire; Maestripieri, Dario

    2016-01-01

    Men's testosterone may be an important physiological mechanism mediating motivational and behavioral aspects of the mating/parenting trade-off not only over time but also in terms of stable differences between mating-oriented and parenting-oriented individuals. In this study, we tested the hypothesis that self-reported interest in babies is inversely related to testosterone reactivity to cues of short-term mating among heterosexual young men. Among 100 participants, interest in babies was related to a slow life-history strategy, as assessed by the Mini-K questionnaire, and negatively related to testosterone responses to an erotic video. Interest in babies was not associated with baseline testosterone levels or with testosterone reactivity to nonsexual social stimuli. These results provide the first evidence that differential testosterone reactivity to sexual stimuli may be an important aspect of individual differences in life-history strategies among human males.

  18. Interest in Babies Negatively Predicts Testosterone Responses to Sexual Visual Stimuli Among Heterosexual Young Men.

    PubMed

    Zilioli, Samuele; Ponzi, Davide; Henry, Andrea; Kubicki, Konrad; Nickels, Nora; Wilson, M Claire; Maestripieri, Dario

    2016-01-01

    Men's testosterone may be an important physiological mechanism mediating motivational and behavioral aspects of the mating/parenting trade-off not only over time but also in terms of stable differences between mating-oriented and parenting-oriented individuals. In this study, we tested the hypothesis that self-reported interest in babies is inversely related to testosterone reactivity to cues of short-term mating among heterosexual young men. Among 100 participants, interest in babies was related to a slow life-history strategy, as assessed by the Mini-K questionnaire, and negatively related to testosterone responses to an erotic video. Interest in babies was not associated with baseline testosterone levels or with testosterone reactivity to nonsexual social stimuli. These results provide the first evidence that differential testosterone reactivity to sexual stimuli may be an important aspect of individual differences in life-history strategies among human males. PMID:26626441

  19. Acquisition of matching-to-sample performance in rats using visual stimuli on nose keys.

    PubMed

    Iversen, I H

    1993-05-01

    Steady and blinking white lights were projected on three nose keys arranged horizontally on one wall. The procedure was a conditional discrimination with a sample stimulus presented on the middle key and comparison stimuli on the side keys. Three rats acquired simultaneous "identity matching." Accuracy reached 80% in about 25 sessions and 90% or higher after about 50 sessions. Acquisition progressed through several stages of repeated errors, alteration between comparison keys from trial to trial, preference of specific keys or stimuli, and a gradual lengthening of strings of consecutive trials with correct responses. An analysis of the acquisition curves for individual trial configurations indicated that the matching-to-sample performance possibly consisted of separate discriminations. PMID:8315365

  20. Discriminative stimulus effects of combinations of drug and visual stimuli in pigeons.

    PubMed

    Schaal, D.W.; Jewett, D.C.; Schuh, K.J.

    1994-10-01

    Six pigeons were studied to determine whether the brightness of a houselight interacted with the stimuli produced by methadone, and whether the nature of the interaction depended on the order of training of the two discriminations. Three pigeons were trained to peck the right key after methadone (2.0mg/kg) and the left key after saline, when the houselight was dim. The effects of a range of methadone doses (0.5, 1.0, 2.0mg/kg and saline) were tested. Three other pigeons were trained, in the absence of drug, to peck the right key when the houselight was dim and the left key when the houselight was bright. The effects of a range of houselight intensities were tested. Then, for both groups, right-key pecks were reinforced in the presence of methadone and the dim houselight, and left-key pecks were reinforced in the presence of saline and the bright houselight. Methadone doses were tested in the presence of both houselight brightnesses used in training. All pigeons pecked the methadone-appropriate key after high doses of methadone, regardless of houselight intensity. All pigeons trained to discriminate houselight brightness first, and one of the pigeons trained to discriminate methadone first, pecked according to the houselight condition when saline and lower doses were tested. In the other pigeon trained to discriminate methadone first, pecking was more related to drug dose. These data show that a drug stimulus can compete with external stimuli for behavioral control, that a drug stimulus can assume control over behavior originally controlled by external stimuli, and that discriminations based on external stimuli may be retained when saline or low doses of drug are administered.

  1. Action video game players' visual search advantage extends to biologically relevant stimuli.

    PubMed

    Chisholm, Joseph D; Kingstone, Alan

    2015-07-01

    Research investigating the effects of action video game experience on cognition has demonstrated a host of performance improvements on a variety of basic tasks. Given the prevailing evidence that these benefits result from efficient control of attentional processes, there has been growing interest in using action video games as a general tool to enhance everyday attentional control. However, to date, there is little evidence indicating that the benefits of action video game playing scale up to complex settings with socially meaningful stimuli - one of the fundamental components of our natural environment. The present experiment compared action video game player (AVGP) and non-video game player (NVGP) performance on an oculomotor capture task that presented participants with face stimuli. In addition, the expression of a distractor face was manipulated to assess if action video game experience modulated the effect of emotion. Results indicate that AVGPs experience less oculomotor capture than NVGPs; an effect that was not influenced by the emotional content depicted by distractor faces. It is noteworthy that this AVGP advantage emerged despite participants being unaware that the investigation had to do with video game playing, and participants being equivalent in their motivation and treatment of the task as a game. The results align with the notion that action video game experience is associated with superior attentional and oculomotor control, and provides evidence that these benefits can generalize to more complex and biologically relevant stimuli. PMID:26071923

  2. Action video game players' visual search advantage extends to biologically relevant stimuli.

    PubMed

    Chisholm, Joseph D; Kingstone, Alan

    2015-07-01

    Research investigating the effects of action video game experience on cognition has demonstrated a host of performance improvements on a variety of basic tasks. Given the prevailing evidence that these benefits result from efficient control of attentional processes, there has been growing interest in using action video games as a general tool to enhance everyday attentional control. However, to date, there is little evidence indicating that the benefits of action video game playing scale up to complex settings with socially meaningful stimuli - one of the fundamental components of our natural environment. The present experiment compared action video game player (AVGP) and non-video game player (NVGP) performance on an oculomotor capture task that presented participants with face stimuli. In addition, the expression of a distractor face was manipulated to assess if action video game experience modulated the effect of emotion. Results indicate that AVGPs experience less oculomotor capture than NVGPs; an effect that was not influenced by the emotional content depicted by distractor faces. It is noteworthy that this AVGP advantage emerged despite participants being unaware that the investigation had to do with video game playing, and participants being equivalent in their motivation and treatment of the task as a game. The results align with the notion that action video game experience is associated with superior attentional and oculomotor control, and provides evidence that these benefits can generalize to more complex and biologically relevant stimuli.

  3. Activation of extrastriate and frontal cortical areas by visual words and word-like stimuli

    SciTech Connect

    Petersen, S.E.; Fox, P.T.; Snyder, A.Z.; Raichle, M.E. )

    1990-08-31

    Visual presentation of words activates extrastriate regions of the occipital lobes of the brain. When analyzed by positron emission tomography (PET), certain areas in the left, medial extrastriate visual cortex were activated by visually presented pseudowords that obey English spelling rules, as well as by actual words. These areas were not activated by nonsense strings of letters or letter-like forms. Thus visual word form computations are based on learned distinctions between words and nonwords. In addition, during passive presentation of words, but not pseudowords, activation occurred in a left frontal area that is related to semantic processing. These findings support distinctions made in cognitive psychology and computational modeling between high-level visual and semantic computations on single words and describe the anatomy that may underlie these distinctions.

  4. Gender differences in the processing of standard emotional visual stimuli: integrating ERP and fMRI results

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Lei; Tian, Jie; Wang, Xiaoxiang; Hu, Jin

    2005-04-01

    The comprehensive understanding of human emotion processing needs consideration both in the spatial distribution and the temporal sequencing of neural activity. The aim of our work is to identify brain regions involved in emotional recognition as well as to follow the time sequence in the millisecond-range resolution. The effect of activation upon visual stimuli in different gender by International Affective Picture System (IAPS) has been examined. Hemodynamic and electrophysiological responses were measured in the same subjects. Both fMRI and ERP study were employed in an event-related study. fMRI have been obtained with 3.0 T Siemens Magnetom whole-body MRI scanner. 128-channel ERP data were recorded using an EGI system. ERP is sensitive to millisecond changes in mental activity, but the source localization and timing is limited by the ill-posed 'inversed' problem. We try to investigate the ERP source reconstruction problem in this study using fMRI constraint. We chose ICA as a pre-processing step of ERP source reconstruction to exclude the artifacts and provide a prior estimate of the number of dipoles. The results indicate that male and female show differences in neural mechanism during emotion visual stimuli.

  5. Visualizing phase transition behavior of dilute stimuli responsive polymer solutions via Mueller matrix polarimetry.

    PubMed

    Narayanan, Amal; Chandel, Shubham; Ghosh, Nirmalya; De, Priyadarsi

    2015-09-15

    Probing volume phase transition behavior of superdiluted polymer solutions both micro- and macroscopically still persists as an outstanding challenge. In this regard, we have explored 4 × 4 spectral Mueller matrix measurement and its inverse analysis for excavating the microarchitectural facts about stimuli responsiveness of "smart" polymers. Phase separation behavior of thermoresponsive poly(N-isopropylacrylamide) (PNIPAM) and pH responsive poly(N,N-(dimethylamino)ethyl methacrylate) (PDMAEMA) and their copolymers were analyzed in terms of Mueller matrix derived polarization parameters, namely, depolarization (Δ), diattenuation (d), and linear retardance (δ). The Δ, d, and δ parameters provided useful information on both macro- and microstructural alterations during the phase separation. Additionally, the two step action ((i) breakage of polymer-water hydrogen bonding and (ii) polymer-polymer aggregation) at the molecular microenvironment during the cloud point generation was successfully probed via these parameters. It is demonstrated that, in comparison to the present techniques available for assessing the hydrophobic-hydrophilic switch over of simple stimuli-responsive polymers, Mueller matrix polarimetry offers an important advantage requiring a few hundred times dilute polymer solution (0.01 mg/mL, 1.1-1.4 μM) at a low-volume format. PMID:26287499

  6. Heightened eating drive and visual food stimuli attenuate central nociceptive processing.

    PubMed

    Wright, Hazel; Li, Xiaoyun; Fallon, Nicholas B; Giesbrecht, Timo; Thomas, Anna; Harrold, Joanne A; Halford, Jason C G; Stancak, Andrej

    2015-03-01

    Hunger and pain are basic drives that compete for a behavioral response when experienced together. To investigate the cortical processes underlying hunger-pain interactions, we manipulated participants' hunger and presented photographs of appetizing food or inedible objects in combination with painful laser stimuli. Fourteen healthy participants completed two EEG sessions: one after an overnight fast, the other following a large breakfast. Spatio-temporal patterns of cortical activation underlying the hunger-pain competition were explored with 128-channel EEG recordings and source dipole analysis of laser-evoked potentials (LEPs). We found that initial pain ratings were temporarily reduced when participants were hungry compared with fed. Source activity in parahippocampal gyrus was weaker when participants were hungry, and activations of operculo-insular cortex, anterior cingulate cortex, parahippocampal gyrus, and cerebellum were smaller in the context of appetitive food photographs than in that of inedible object photographs. Cortical processing of noxious stimuli in pain-related brain structures is reduced and pain temporarily attenuated when people are hungry or passively viewing food photographs, suggesting a possible interaction between the opposing motivational forces of the eating drive and pain. PMID:25475348

  7. Heightened eating drive and visual food stimuli attenuate central nociceptive processing

    PubMed Central

    Li, Xiaoyun; Fallon, Nicholas B.; Giesbrecht, Timo; Thomas, Anna; Harrold, Joanne A.; Halford, Jason C. G.; Stancak, Andrej

    2014-01-01

    Hunger and pain are basic drives that compete for a behavioral response when experienced together. To investigate the cortical processes underlying hunger-pain interactions, we manipulated participants' hunger and presented photographs of appetizing food or inedible objects in combination with painful laser stimuli. Fourteen healthy participants completed two EEG sessions: one after an overnight fast, the other following a large breakfast. Spatio-temporal patterns of cortical activation underlying the hunger-pain competition were explored with 128-channel EEG recordings and source dipole analysis of laser-evoked potentials (LEPs). We found that initial pain ratings were temporarily reduced when participants were hungry compared with fed. Source activity in parahippocampal gyrus was weaker when participants were hungry, and activations of operculo-insular cortex, anterior cingulate cortex, parahippocampal gyrus, and cerebellum were smaller in the context of appetitive food photographs than in that of inedible object photographs. Cortical processing of noxious stimuli in pain-related brain structures is reduced and pain temporarily attenuated when people are hungry or passively viewing food photographs, suggesting a possible interaction between the opposing motivational forces of the eating drive and pain. PMID:25475348

  8. Heightened eating drive and visual food stimuli attenuate central nociceptive processing.

    PubMed

    Wright, Hazel; Li, Xiaoyun; Fallon, Nicholas B; Giesbrecht, Timo; Thomas, Anna; Harrold, Joanne A; Halford, Jason C G; Stancak, Andrej

    2015-03-01

    Hunger and pain are basic drives that compete for a behavioral response when experienced together. To investigate the cortical processes underlying hunger-pain interactions, we manipulated participants' hunger and presented photographs of appetizing food or inedible objects in combination with painful laser stimuli. Fourteen healthy participants completed two EEG sessions: one after an overnight fast, the other following a large breakfast. Spatio-temporal patterns of cortical activation underlying the hunger-pain competition were explored with 128-channel EEG recordings and source dipole analysis of laser-evoked potentials (LEPs). We found that initial pain ratings were temporarily reduced when participants were hungry compared with fed. Source activity in parahippocampal gyrus was weaker when participants were hungry, and activations of operculo-insular cortex, anterior cingulate cortex, parahippocampal gyrus, and cerebellum were smaller in the context of appetitive food photographs than in that of inedible object photographs. Cortical processing of noxious stimuli in pain-related brain structures is reduced and pain temporarily attenuated when people are hungry or passively viewing food photographs, suggesting a possible interaction between the opposing motivational forces of the eating drive and pain.

  9. [Evaluation of changes in the visual field in glaucoma during examination with white and colored stimuli].

    PubMed

    Skorkovská, S; Stará, S; Kocí, J

    2003-01-01

    In a group of 35 eyes with open angle glaucoma the visual field was examined by means of standard white perimetry and coloured blue-yellow perimetry. The results of the two types of examination of the central visual field were evaluated by statistical analysis where the assessed statistical parameters of the visual field of the investigated eyes with glaucoma we recompared. In the group a significant difference was found in the mean sensitivity of the retina (MS), mean loss of sensitivity (MD) and loss variance (LV) between white and coloured perimetry. The investigated indexes of the visual field in coloured perimetry differed significantly as compared with standard perimetry, i.e. the values of median sensitivity were lower and those of the mean loss of sensitivity were higher. From the results of our investigation ensues that coloured perimetry was a more sensitive method for the detection of changes of the visual field in a group of eyes with open angle glaucoma than conventional white perimetry.

  10. Qualitative Differences in the Representation of Abstract versus Concrete Words: Evidence from the Visual-World Paradigm

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dunabeitia, Jon Andoni; Aviles, Alberto; Afonso, Olivia; Scheepers, Christoph; Carreiras, Manuel

    2009-01-01

    In the present visual-world experiment, participants were presented with visual displays that included a target item that was a semantic associate of an abstract or a concrete word. This manipulation allowed us to test a basic prediction derived from the qualitatively different representational framework that supports the view of different…

  11. Effects of Emotion on Memory Specificity: Memory Trade-Offs Elicited by Negative Visually Arousing Stimuli

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kensinger, Elizabeth A.; Garoff-Eaton, Rachel J.; Schacter, Daniel L.

    2007-01-01

    Two different types of trade-offs have been discussed with regard to memory for emotional information: A trade-off in the ability to remember the gist versus the visual detail of emotional information, and a trade-off in the ability to remember the central emotional elements of an event versus the nonemotional (peripheral) elements of that same…

  12. Chills in Different Sensory Domains: Frisson Elicited by Acoustical, Visual, Tactile and Gustatory Stimuli

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Grewe, Oliver; Katzur, Bjorn; Kopiez, Reinhard; Altenmuller, Eckart

    2011-01-01

    "Chills" (frisson manifested as goose bumps or shivers) have been used in an increasing number of studies as indicators of emotions in response to music (e.g., Craig, 2005; Guhn, Hamm, & Zentner, 2007; McCrae, 2007; Panksepp, 1995; Sloboda, 1991). In this study we present evidence that chills can be induced through aural, visual, tactile, and…

  13. Comparative study of visual color differences using reflective and self-luminous color stimuli

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xin, John H.; Lam, C. C.

    2002-06-01

    In this study, visual color difference assessements were conducted using both reflective colors which are dyed cotton fabrics with no obvious texture pattern and self-luminous colors displayed on a CRT monitor. All together, eighty-two pairs of color samples belonging to five different color centres were used. The average color difference for all pairs is about 5.0 CIELAB units. The values of the color difference for the self-luminous color pairs (ΔEself-luminous) are very close to those of the corresponding reflective color pairs (ΔEreflective), i.e., the reproduction of the reflective color pairs onto the CRT monitor was very accurate. Grey scale method was used in the visual assessment of color difference. The assessments were done using five different viewing conditions, i.e., reference viewing condition recommended by CIE (CIE Technical Report CIE 116-1995) and the other conditions which include a 3-inch gap between samples in a pair, small sized sample corresponding to 2° angle of subtend and two different background colors. In comparison with the visual color differences of the reflective pairs under the reference condition, the results obtained from the CRT color pairs are 15% smaller. Under other viewing conditions, the visual color difference of the CRT color pairs are 13 to 18% smaller than those of hte reflective color pairs. Further comparison was made using chromatic color discrimination ellipses for self-luminous and reflective colors.

  14. The Effect of Script on Poor Readers' Sensitivity to Dynamic Visual Stimuli

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kim, Jeesun; Davis, Chris; Burnham, Denis; Luksaneeyanawin, Sudaporn

    2004-01-01

    The current research examined performance of good and poor readers of Thai on two tasks that assess sensitivity to dynamic visual displays. Readers of Thai, a complex alphabetic script that nonetheless has a regular orthography, were chosen in order to contrast patterns of performance with readers of Korean Hangul (a similarly regular language but…

  15. USL NASA/RECON project presentations at the 1985 ACM Computer Science Conference: Abstracts and visuals

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dominick, Wayne D. (Editor); Chum, Frank Y.; Gallagher, Suzy; Granier, Martin; Hall, Philip P.; Moreau, Dennis R.; Triantafyllopoulos, Spiros

    1985-01-01

    This Working Paper Series entry represents the abstracts and visuals associated with presentations delivered by six USL NASA/RECON research team members at the above named conference. The presentations highlight various aspects of NASA contract activities pursued by the participants as they relate to individual research projects. The titles of the six presentations are as follows: (1) The Specification and Design of a Distributed Workstation; (2) An Innovative, Multidisciplinary Educational Program in Interactive Information Storage and Retrieval; (3) Critical Comparative Analysis of the Major Commercial IS and R Systems; (4) Design Criteria for a PC-Based Common User Interface to Remote Information Systems; (5) The Design of an Object-Oriented Graphics Interface; and (6) Knowledge-Based Information Retrieval: Techniques and Applications.

  16. Neuronal activity in the lateral cerebellum of the cat related to visual stimuli at rest, visually guided step modification, and saccadic eye movements.

    PubMed

    Marple-Horvat, D E; Criado, J M; Armstrong, D M

    1998-01-15

    1. The discharge patterns of 166 lateral cerebellar neurones were studied in cats at rest and during visually guided stepping on a horizontal circular ladder. A hundred and twelve cells were tested against one or both of two visual stimuli: a brief full-field flash of light delivered during eating or rest, and a rung which moved up as the cat approached. Forty-five cells (40%) gave a short latency response to one or both of these stimuli. These visually responsive neurones were found in hemispheral cortex (rather than paravermal) and the lateral cerebellar nucleus (rather than nucleus interpositus). 2. Thirty-seven cells (of 103 tested, 36%) responded to flash. The cortical visual response (mean onset latency 38 ms) was usually an increase in Purkinje cell discharge rate, of around 50 impulses s-1 and representing 1 or 2 additional spikes per trial (1.6 on average). The nuclear response to flash (mean onset latency 27 ms) was usually an increased discharge rate which was shorter lived and converted rapidly to a depression of discharge or return to control levels, so that there were on average only an additional 0.6 spikes per trial. A straightforward explanation of the difference between the cortical and nuclear response would be that the increased inhibitory Purkinje cell output cuts short the nuclear response. 3. A higher proportion of cells responded to rung movement, sixteen of twenty-five tested (64%). Again most responded with increased discharge, which had longer latency than the flash response (first change in dentate output ca 60 ms after start of movement) and longer duration. Peak frequency changes were twice the size of those in response to flash, at 100 impulses s-1 on average and additional spikes per trial were correspondingly 3-4 times higher. Both cortical and nuclear responses were context dependent, being larger when the rung moved when the cat was closer than further away. 4. A quarter of cells (20 of 84 tested, 24%) modulated their activity in

  17. Summarizing and visualizing structural changes during the evolution of biomedical ontologies using a Diff Abstraction Network.

    PubMed

    Ochs, Christopher; Perl, Yehoshua; Geller, James; Haendel, Melissa; Brush, Matthew; Arabandi, Sivaram; Tu, Samson

    2015-08-01

    Biomedical ontologies are a critical component in biomedical research and practice. As an ontology evolves, its structure and content change in response to additions, deletions and updates. When editing a biomedical ontology, small local updates may affect large portions of the ontology, leading to unintended and potentially erroneous changes. Such unwanted side effects often go unnoticed since biomedical ontologies are large and complex knowledge structures. Abstraction networks, which provide compact summaries of an ontology's content and structure, have been used to uncover structural irregularities, inconsistencies and errors in ontologies. In this paper, we introduce Diff Abstraction Networks ("Diff AbNs"), compact networks that summarize and visualize global structural changes due to ontology editing operations that result in a new ontology release. A Diff AbN can be used to support curators in identifying unintended and unwanted ontology changes. The derivation of two Diff AbNs, the Diff Area Taxonomy and the Diff Partial-area Taxonomy, is explained and Diff Partial-area Taxonomies are derived and analyzed for the Ontology of Clinical Research, Sleep Domain Ontology, and eagle-i Research Resource Ontology. Diff Taxonomy usage for identifying unintended erroneous consequences of quality assurance and ontology merging are demonstrated.

  18. Art expertise reduces influence of visual salience on fixation in viewing abstract-paintings.

    PubMed

    Koide, Naoko; Kubo, Takatomi; Nishida, Satoshi; Shibata, Tomohiro; Ikeda, Kazushi

    2015-01-01

    When viewing a painting, artists perceive more information from the painting on the basis of their experience and knowledge than art novices do. This difference can be reflected in eye scan paths during viewing of paintings. Distributions of scan paths of artists are different from those of novices even when the paintings contain no figurative object (i.e. abstract paintings). There are two possible explanations for this difference of scan paths. One is that artists have high sensitivity to high-level features such as textures and composition of colors and therefore their fixations are more driven by such features compared with novices. The other is that fixations of artists are more attracted by salient features than those of novices and the fixations are driven by low-level features. To test these, we measured eye fixations of artists and novices during the free viewing of various abstract paintings and compared the distribution of their fixations for each painting with a topological attentional map that quantifies the conspicuity of low-level features in the painting (i.e. saliency map). We found that the fixation distribution of artists was more distinguishable from the saliency map than that of novices. This difference indicates that fixations of artists are less driven by low-level features than those of novices. Our result suggests that artists may extract visual information from paintings based on high-level features. This ability of artists may be associated with artists' deep aesthetic appreciation of paintings.

  19. Visual evoked potentials to lateralised stimuli in two cases of callosal agenesis.

    PubMed Central

    Rugg, M D; Milner, A D; Lines, C R

    1985-01-01

    Visual evoked potentials (VEPs) to lateralised light flashes were recorded from two acallosal patients. In one patient, these recordings were made while he performed a choice-reaction time task, and in the other patient the VEPs were obtained during a simple reaction time task. In both cases the patient's VEPs from electrode sites contralateral to the visual field of stimulus delivery resembled those of controls. Their VEPs from ipsilateral sites were aberrant, however, in that while control subjects showed a smaller and slightly delayed ipsilateral N160 component, this was not discernible in the patients' data. It is concluded that the ipsilateral N160 relies for its generation on the transcallosal transfer of information processed initially by the contralateral hemisphere. PMID:3998742

  20. Visual event-related potentials to biological motion stimuli in autism spectrum disorders

    PubMed Central

    Bletsch, Anke; Krick, Christoph; Siniatchkin, Michael; Jarczok, Tomasz A.; Freitag, Christine M.; Bender, Stephan

    2014-01-01

    Atypical visual processing of biological motion contributes to social impairments in autism spectrum disorders (ASD). However, the exact temporal sequence of deficits of cortical biological motion processing in ASD has not been studied to date. We used 64-channel electroencephalography to study event-related potentials associated with human motion perception in 17 children and adolescents with ASD and 21 typical controls. A spatio-temporal source analysis was performed to assess the brain structures involved in these processes. We expected altered activity already during early stimulus processing and reduced activity during subsequent biological motion specific processes in ASD. In response to both, random and biological motion, the P100 amplitude was decreased suggesting unspecific deficits in visual processing, and the occipito-temporal N200 showed atypical lateralization in ASD suggesting altered hemispheric specialization. A slow positive deflection after 400 ms, reflecting top-down processes, and human motion-specific dipole activation differed slightly between groups, with reduced and more diffuse activation in the ASD-group. The latter could be an indicator of a disrupted neuronal network for biological motion processing in ADS. Furthermore, early visual processing (P100) seems to be correlated to biological motion-specific activation. This emphasizes the relevance of early sensory processing for higher order processing deficits in ASD. PMID:23887808

  1. Exogenous attention to facial vs non-facial emotional visual stimuli

    PubMed Central

    Kessel, Dominique; Carboni, Alejandra; López-Martín, Sara; Albert, Jacobo; Tapia, Manuel; Mercado, Francisco; Capilla, Almudena; Hinojosa, José A.

    2013-01-01

    The capacity of the two types of non-symbolic emotional stimuli most widely used in research on affective processes, faces and (non-facial) emotional scenes, to capture exogenous attention, was compared. Negative, positive and neutral faces and affective scenes were presented as distracters to 34 participants while they carried out a demanding digit categorization task. Behavioral (reaction times and number of errors) and electrophysiological (event-related potentials—ERPs) indices of exogenous attention were analyzed. Globally, facial expressions and emotional scenes showed similar capabilities to attract exogenous attention. Electrophysiologically, attentional capture was reflected in the P2a component of ERPs at the scalp level, and in left precentral areas at the source level. Negatively charged faces and scenes elicited maximal P2a/precentral gyrus activity. In the case of scenes, this negativity bias was also evident at the behavioral level. Additionally, a specific effect of facial distracters was observed in N170 at the scalp level, and in the fusiform gyrus and inferior parietal lobule at the source level. This effect revealed maximal attention to positive expressions. This facial positivity offset was also observed at the behavioral level. Taken together, the present results indicate that faces and non-facial scenes elicit partially different and, to some extent, complementary exogenous attention mechanisms. PMID:22689218

  2. Memory of opponents is more potent than visual sign stimuli after social hierarchy has been established

    PubMed Central

    Korzan, Wayne J.; Höglund, Erik; Watt, Michael J.; Forster, Gina L.; Øverli, Øyvind; Lukkes, Jodi L.; Summers, Cliff H.

    2009-01-01

    During agonistic interactions between male Anolis carolinensis, perception of a visual sign stimulus (darkened eyespots) not only inhibits aggression and promotes initial attainment of dominant social status, but also evokes distinct neuroendocrine responses in each opponent. This study was designed to examine the effect of eyespot manipulation on behavior and social rank during a second interaction between opponents that had previously established a natural dyadic social hierarchy. Prior to a second interaction, eyespots of familiar size-matched combatants were manipulated to reverse information conveyed by this visual signal. Eyespots on the previously dominant male were masked with green paint to indicate low aggression and social status. Previously subordinate males had their eyespots permanently marked with black paint to convey high aggression and status. Opponents were then repaired for a second 10 min interaction following either one or three days of separation. Aggression was generally decreased and social status between pairs remained reasonably consistent. Unlike rapidly activated monoaminergic activity that occurs following the initial pairing, most brain areas sampled were not affected when animals were re-introduced, regardless of visual signal reversal or length of separation between interactions. However in males with “normal” eyespot color, dominant males had reduced serotonergic activity in CA3 and raphé, while subordinate males exhibited elevated CA3 dopaminergic activity. Reversing eyespot color also reversed serotonergic activity in raphé and dopaminergic activity in CA3 after three days of separation. The results suggest that males remember previous opponents, and respond appropriately to their previous social rank in spite of eyespot color. PMID:17602761

  3. Blaming the victims of your own mistakes: How visual search accuracy influences evaluation of stimuli.

    PubMed

    Chetverikov, Andrey; Jóhannesson, Ómar I; Kristjánsson, Árni

    2015-01-01

    Even without explicit positive or negative reinforcement, experiences may influence preferences. According to the affective feedback in hypotheses testing account preferences are determined by the accuracy of hypotheses: correct hypotheses evoke positive affect, while incorrect ones evoke negative affect facilitating changes of hypotheses. Applying this to visual search, we suggest that accurate search should lead to more positive ratings of targets than distractors, while for errors targets should be rated more negatively. We test this in two experiments using time-limited search for a conjunction of gender and tint of faces. Accurate search led to more positive ratings for targets as compared to distractors or targets following errors. Errors led to more negative ratings for targets than for distractors. Critically, eye tracking revealed that the longer the fixation dwell times in target regions, the higher the target ratings for correct responses, and the lower the ratings for errors. The longer observers look at targets, the more positive their ratings if they answer correctly, and less positive, following errors. The findings support the affective feedback account and provide the first demonstration of negative effects on liking ratings following errors in visual search.

  4. Exploring Visual Selective Attention towards Novel Stimuli in Alzheimer's Disease Patients

    PubMed Central

    Chau, Sarah A.; Herrmann, Nathan; Eizenman, Moshe; Chung, Jonathan; Lanctôt, Krista L.

    2015-01-01

    Background Alzheimer's disease (AD) is associated with selective attention impairments, which could contribute to cognitive and functional deficits. Selective attention can be explored through examination of novelty preference. Aims In this study, we quantified novelty preference in AD patients by measuring visual scanning behaviour using an eye tracking paradigm. Methods Mild-to-moderate AD patients and elderly controls viewed slides containing novel and repeated images simultaneously. The outcome measure was time spent on specific images, with novelty preference defined by greater relative fixation time (RFT) on novel versus repeated images. Cognitive status (Standardized Mini-Mental State Examination, SMMSE) and attention (Digit Span, DS) were also measured. Results AD patients (age 79.2 ± 6.7 years, SMMSE 22.2 ± 4.0, n = 41) and controls (age 76.2 ± 6.4 years, SMMSE 28.1 ± 2.0, n = 24) were similar in age, education and sex. Compared with controls, AD patients had lower RFT on novel than on repeated images (F1,63 = 11.18, p = 0.001). Further, reduced RFT was associated with lower scores on SMMSE (r63 = 0.288, p = 0.020) and DS (r63 = 0.269, p = 0.030). Within individuals, novelty preference was detected in 92.3% of patients and in 100% of controls. Conclusion These findings suggest that novelty preference, measured by visual scanning behaviour, can differentiate cognitively healthy and impaired people and may offer a nonverbal, less cognitively demanding method of assessing selective attention. PMID:26955382

  5. The effects of sex steroids and vasotocin on behavioral responses to visual and olfactory sexual stimuli in ovariectomized female roughskin newts.

    PubMed

    Thompson, R R; Moore, F L

    2003-11-01

    Previous studies have found that vasotocin (AVT) administration to male roughskin newts (Taricha granulosa) enhances courtship clasping as well as appetitive responses to specific sexual stimuli and that treating female newts with androgens plus AVT induces the expression of male-typical courtship clasping (the selective clasping of females). However, the unique and/or interactive effects of sex steroids and AVT on appetitive responses to specific sexual stimuli have not yet been determined. To first identify male-typical, sexually dimorphic appetitive responses to female sexual stimuli, we tested intact newts during the breeding season and found that males, but not females, are attracted to female visual and pheromonal sexual stimuli. We then used ovariectomized (ovx) females implanted with empty silastic capsules (Blk) or with capsules containing testosterone (T), dihydrotestosterone (DHT), or estradiol (E2) and then injected with either saline or AVT to determine the effects of steroids and AVT, alone or in combination with each other, on male-typical behavioral responses to those stimuli. E2 treatment depressed responses toward female visual stimuli independently of AVT. On the other hand, only T-implanted, AVT-injected females displayed male-typical behavioral responses toward female olfactory stimuli, preferring to spend more time in proximity to female-scented than unscented newt models and selectively clasping the female-scented models. Together, these results support the conclusion that sex steroids and AVT influence behavioral responses to sexual stimuli via sensory-specific mechanisms. Furthermore, they suggest that T and AVT interact within the brain to influence sensorimotor processing in the pathways that integrate olfactory sexual stimuli into male-typical courtship behaviors.

  6. Visual similarity effects on short-term memory for order: the case of verbally labeled pictorial stimuli.

    PubMed

    Poirer, Marie; Saint-Aubin, Jean; Musselwhite, Karen; Mohanadas, Thulasi; Mahammed, Ghuson

    2007-06-01

    Four experiments examined the effect of visual similarity on immediate memory for order. Experiments 1 and 2 used easily nameable line drawings. Following a sequential presentation in either silent or suppression conditions, participants were presented with the drawings in a new, random order and were required to remember their original serial position. In Experiment 3, participants first learned to associate a verbal label with an abstract matrix pattern. Then they completed an immediate memory task in which they had to name the matrices aloud during presentation. At recall, the task required remembering either the order of the matrices or the order of their names. In Experiment 4, participants learned to associate nonword labels with schematic line drawings of faces; the phonemic similarity of the verbal labels was also manipulated. All four experiments indicate that the representations supporting performance comprise both verbal and visual features. The results are consistent with a multiattribute encoding view.

  7. Reactivity of Dogs' Brain Oscillations to Visual Stimuli Measured with Non-Invasive Electroencephalography

    PubMed Central

    Kujala, Miiamaaria V.; Törnqvist, Heini; Somppi, Sanni; Hänninen, Laura; Krause, Christina M.; Vainio, Outi; Kujala, Jan

    2013-01-01

    Studying cognition of domestic dogs has gone through a renaissance within the last decades. However, although the behavioral studies of dogs are beginning to be common in the field of animal cognition, the neural events underlying cognition remain unknown. Here, we employed a non-invasive electroencephalography, with adhesive electrodes attached to the top of the skin, to measure brain activity of from 8 domestic dogs (Canis familiaris) while they stayed still to observe photos of dog and human faces. Spontaneous oscillatory activity of the dogs, peaking in the sensors over the parieto-occipital cortex, was suppressed statistically significantly during visual task compared with resting activity at the frequency of 15–30 Hz. Moreover, a stimulus-induced low-frequency (∼2–6 Hz) suppression locked to the stimulus onset was evident at the frontal sensors, possibly reflecting a motor rhythm guiding the exploratory eye movements. The results suggest task-related reactivity of the macroscopic oscillatory activity in the dog brain. To our knowledge, the study is the first to reveal non-invasively measured reactivity of brain electrophysiological oscillations in healthy dogs, and it has been based purely on positive operant conditional training, without the need for movement restriction or medication. PMID:23650504

  8. Response properties of visual interneurons to motion stimuli in the praying mantis, Tenodera aridifolia.

    PubMed

    Yamawaki, Yoshifumi; Toh, Yoshihiro

    2003-07-01

    Intracellular responses of motion-sensitive visual interneurons were recorded from the lobula complex of the mantis, Tenodera aridifolia. The interneurons were divided into four classes according to the response polarity, spatial tuning, and directional selectivity. Neurons of the first class had small, medium, or large receptive fields and showed a strong excitation in response to a small-field motion such as a small square moving in any direction (SF neurons). The second class neurons showed non-directionally selective responses: an excitation to a large-field motion of gratings in any direction (ND neurons). Most ND neurons had small or medium-size receptive fields. Neurons of the third class had large receptive fields and exhibited directionally selective responses: an excitation to a large-field motion of gratings in preferred direction and an inhibition to a motion in opposite, null direction (DS neurons). The last class neurons had small receptive fields and showed inhibitory responses to a moving square and gratings (I neurons). The functional roles of these neurons in prey recognition and optomotor response were discussed. PMID:12867710

  9. Flexible responses to visual and olfactory stimuli by foraging Manduca sexta: larval nutrition affects adult behaviour.

    PubMed

    Goyret, Joaquín; Kelber, Almut; Pfaff, Michael; Raguso, Robert A

    2009-08-01

    Here, we show that the consequences of deficient micronutrient (beta-carotene) intake during larval stages of Manduca sexta are carried across metamorphosis, affecting adult behaviour. Our manipulation of larval diet allowed us to examine how developmental plasticity impacts the interplay between visual and olfactory inputs on adult foraging behaviour. Larvae of M. sexta were reared on natural (Nicotiana tabacum) and artificial laboratory diets containing different concentrations of beta-carotene (standard diet, low beta-carotene, high beta-carotene and cornmeal). This vitamin-A precursor has been shown to be crucial for photoreception sensitivity in the retina of M. sexta. After completing development, post-metamorphosis, starved adults were presented with artificial feeders that could be either scented or unscented. Regardless of their larval diet, adult moths fed with relatively high probabilities on scented feeders. When feeders were unscented, moths reared on tobacco were more responsive than moths reared on beta-carotene-deficient artificial diets. Strikingly, moths reared on artificial diets supplemented with increasing amounts of beta-carotene (low beta and high beta) showed increasing probabilities of response to scentless feeders. We discuss these results in relationship to the use of complex, multi-modal sensory information by foraging animals.

  10. First Came the Trees, Then the Forest: Developmental Changes during Childhood in the Processing of Visual Local-Global Patterns According to the Meaningfulness of the Stimuli

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Poirel, Nicolas; Mellet, Emmanuel; Houde, Olivier; Pineau, Arlette

    2008-01-01

    This study investigated how global and local perceptual processes evolve during childhood according to the meaningfulness of the stimuli. Children had to decide whether visually presented pairs of items were identical or not. Items consisted of global forms made up of local forms. Both global and local forms could represent either objects or…

  11. Visual stimuli induced by self-motion and object-motion modify odour-guided flight of male moths (Manduca sexta L.).

    PubMed

    Verspui, Remko; Gray, John R

    2009-10-01

    Animals rely on multimodal sensory integration for proper orientation within their environment. For example, odour-guided behaviours often require appropriate integration of concurrent visual cues. To gain a further understanding of mechanisms underlying sensory integration in odour-guided behaviour, our study examined the effects of visual stimuli induced by self-motion and object-motion on odour-guided flight in male M. sexta. By placing stationary objects (pillars) on either side of a female pheromone plume, moths produced self-induced visual motion during odour-guided flight. These flights showed a reduction in both ground and flight speeds and inter-turn interval when compared with flight tracks without stationary objects. Presentation of an approaching 20 cm disc, to simulate object-motion, resulted in interrupted odour-guided flight and changes in flight direction away from the pheromone source. Modifications of odour-guided flight behaviour in the presence of stationary objects suggest that visual information, in conjunction with olfactory cues, can be used to control the rate of counter-turning. We suggest that the behavioural responses to visual stimuli induced by object-motion indicate the presence of a neural circuit that relays visual information to initiate escape responses. These behavioural responses also suggest the presence of a sensory conflict requiring a trade-off between olfactory and visually driven behaviours. The mechanisms underlying olfactory and visual integration are discussed in the context of these behavioural responses.

  12. Teaching with Concrete and Abstract Visual Representations: Effects on Students' Problem Solving, Problem Representations, and Learning Perceptions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Moreno, Roxana; Ozogul, Gamze; Reisslein, Martin

    2011-01-01

    In 3 experiments, we examined the effects of using concrete and/or abstract visual problem representations during instruction on students' problem-solving practice, near transfer, problem representations, and learning perceptions. In Experiments 1 and 2, novice students learned about electrical circuit analysis with an instructional program that…

  13. Gender-Specificity of Initial and Controlled Visual Attention to Sexual Stimuli in Androphilic Women and Gynephilic Men.

    PubMed

    Dawson, Samantha J; Chivers, Meredith L

    2016-01-01

    Research across groups and methods consistently finds a gender difference in patterns of specificity of genital response; however, empirically supported mechanisms to explain this difference are lacking. The information-processing model of sexual arousal posits that automatic and controlled cognitive processes are requisite for the generation of sexual responses. Androphilic women's gender-nonspecific response patterns may be the result of sexually-relevant cues that are common to both preferred and nonpreferred genders capturing attention and initiating an automatic sexual response, whereas men's attentional system may be biased towards the detection and response to sexually-preferred cues only. In the present study, we used eye tracking to assess visual attention to sexually-preferred and nonpreferred cues in a sample of androphilic women and gynephilic men. Results support predictions from the information-processing model regarding gendered processing of sexual stimuli in men and women. Men's initial attention patterns were gender-specific, whereas women's were nonspecific. In contrast, both men and women exhibited gender-specific patterns of controlled attention, although this effect was stronger among men. Finally, measures of attention and self-reported attraction were positively related in both men and women. These findings are discussed in the context of the information-processing model and evolutionary mechanisms that may have evolved to promote gendered attentional systems. PMID:27088358

  14. Gender-Specificity of Initial and Controlled Visual Attention to Sexual Stimuli in Androphilic Women and Gynephilic Men

    PubMed Central

    Dawson, Samantha J.; Chivers, Meredith L.

    2016-01-01

    Research across groups and methods consistently finds a gender difference in patterns of specificity of genital response; however, empirically supported mechanisms to explain this difference are lacking. The information-processing model of sexual arousal posits that automatic and controlled cognitive processes are requisite for the generation of sexual responses. Androphilic women’s gender-nonspecific response patterns may be the result of sexually-relevant cues that are common to both preferred and nonpreferred genders capturing attention and initiating an automatic sexual response, whereas men’s attentional system may be biased towards the detection and response to sexually-preferred cues only. In the present study, we used eye tracking to assess visual attention to sexually-preferred and nonpreferred cues in a sample of androphilic women and gynephilic men. Results support predictions from the information-processing model regarding gendered processing of sexual stimuli in men and women. Men’s initial attention patterns were gender-specific, whereas women’s were nonspecific. In contrast, both men and women exhibited gender-specific patterns of controlled attention, although this effect was stronger among men. Finally, measures of attention and self-reported attraction were positively related in both men and women. These findings are discussed in the context of the information-processing model and evolutionary mechanisms that may have evolved to promote gendered attentional systems. PMID:27088358

  15. Neuronal correlates of the visually elicited escape response of the crab Chasmagnathus upon seasonal variations, stimuli changes and perceptual alterations.

    PubMed

    Sztarker, Julieta; Tomsic, Daniel

    2008-06-01

    When confronted with predators, animals are forced to take crucial decisions such as the timing and manner of escape. In the case of the crab Chasmagnathus, cumulative evidence suggests that the escape response to a visual danger stimulus (VDS) can be accounted for by the response of a group of lobula giant (LG) neurons. To further investigate this hypothesis, we examined the relationship between behavioral and neuronal activities within a variety of experimental conditions that affected the level of escape. The intensity of the escape response to VDS was influenced by seasonal variations, changes in stimulus features, and whether the crab perceived stimuli monocularly or binocularly. These experimental conditions consistently affected the response of LG neurons in a way that closely matched the effects observed at the behavioral level. In other words, the intensity of the stimulus-elicited spike activity of LG neurons faithfully reflected the intensity of the escape response. These results support the idea that the LG neurons from the lobula of crabs are deeply involved in the decision for escaping from VDS.

  16. Sexual and affective responses to same- and opposite-sex stimuli in heterosexual and homosexual men: assessment and manipulation of visual attention.

    PubMed

    Samson, Lelia; Janssen, Erick

    2014-07-01

    Affective and cognitive factors play an important role in the activation and regulation of men's sexual arousal. Barlow (1986) argued that initial affective reactions determine the allocation of attention to sexual stimuli. We applied Barlow's model to our understanding of the role of sexual arousal in sexual orientation, where sexual arousal patterns have consistently been found to be congruent with self-reported orientation in men, but not in women. Visual attention of 28 heterosexual and 22 homosexual men to same- and opposite-sex erotic stimuli was assessed and experimentally-directed by means of a newly developed software application, while genital (penile rigidity) and affective responses (self-reported and physiological) were measured. In line with previous research, we found "category specificity" in men's sexual arousal, in that sexual responses were strongest to orientation-congruent stimuli. Also, both homosexual and heterosexual men experienced stronger sexual responses to conditions in which their attention was directed to sexual versus nonsexual content of orientation-congruent stimuli. Only homosexual men manifested higher sexual responses when their visual attention was directed towards the sexual content of orientation-incongruent stimuli. Heterosexual men experienced weaker positive and stronger negative affective responses to orientation-incongruent content, suggestive of potential avoidance or inhibitory mechanisms.

  17. Spatial attention to thermal pain stimuli in subjects with visual spatial hemi-neglect: Extinction, mislocalization and misidentification of stimulus modality

    PubMed Central

    Liu, C.C.; Veldhuijzen, D.S.; Ohara, S.; Winberry, J.; Greenspan, J.D.; Lenz, F.A.

    2012-01-01

    One approach to the study of disordered spatial attention is to carry out tests of extinction, in which stimuli are detected on the left when they are presented on the left alone, but not when both sides are stimulated simultaneously in a dual simultaneous stimulation (DSS) protocol. Extinction has been documented for multiple sensory modalities, but not for thermal pain stimuli, to our knowledge. We now test the hypothesis that subjects with visual spatial neglect (hemi-neglect) will have alterations in thermal pain sensation which are related to abnormal spatial attention. The results demonstrate that thermal pain extinction of hot and cold pain stimuli occurs in a proportion of subjects with hemi-neglect. In the subjects with visual spatial hemi-neglect but without thermal pain extinction, the sensation of the thermal pain stimulus on the affected (left) side was not extinguished but was often localized to the unaffected (right) side, and the submodality of the stimulus (cold or hot) was often misidentified. Ratios indicating the magnitude of extinction, mislocalization and misidentification were significantly larger on the left side of subjects with visual spatial neglect than in healthy controls or in controls with stroke but without hemineglect. The proportion of subjects with thermal pain extinction, mislocalization, or misidentification was significantly higher in subjects with hemi-neglect than those in either control group. These results demonstrate that disordered attention exerts a powerful effect upon the perception of both the location and the quality of thermal pain stimuli. PMID:21111534

  18. ADHD subjects fail to suppress eye blinks and microsaccades while anticipating visual stimuli but recover with medication.

    PubMed

    Fried, Moshe; Tsitsiashvili, Eteri; Bonneh, Yoram S; Sterkin, Anna; Wygnanski-Jaffe, Tamara; Epstein, Tamir; Polat, Uri

    2014-08-01

    Oculomotor behavior and parameters are known to be affected by the allocation of attention and could potentially be used to investigate attention disorders. We explored the oculomotor markers of Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) that are involuntary and quantitative and that could be used to reveal the core-affected mechanisms, as well as be used for differential diagnosis. We recorded eye movements in a group of 22 ADHD-diagnosed patients with and without medication (methylphenidate) and in 22 control observers while performing the test of variables of attention (t.o.v.a.). We found that the average microsaccade and blink rates were higher in the ADHD group, especially in the time interval around stimulus onset. These rates increased monotonically over session time for both groups, but with significantly faster increments in the unmedicated ADHD group. With medication, the level and time course of the microsaccade rate were fully normalized to the control level, regardless of the time interval within trials. In contrast, the pupil diameter decreased over time within sessions and significantly increased above the control level with medication. We interpreted the suppression of microsaccades and eye blinks around the stimulus onset as reflecting a temporal anticipation mechanism for the transient allocation of attention, and their overall rates as inversely reflecting the level of arousal. We suggest that ADHD subjects fail to maintain sufficient levels of arousal during a simple and prolonged task, which limits their ability to dynamically allocate attention while anticipating visual stimuli. This impairment normalizes with medication and its oculomotor quantification could potentially be used for differential diagnosis.

  19. Comparison of Gated Audiovisual Speech Identification in Elderly Hearing Aid Users and Elderly Normal-Hearing Individuals: Effects of Adding Visual Cues to Auditory Speech Stimuli.

    PubMed

    Moradi, Shahram; Lidestam, Björn; Rönnberg, Jerker

    2016-01-01

    The present study compared elderly hearing aid (EHA) users (n = 20) with elderly normal-hearing (ENH) listeners (n = 20) in terms of isolation points (IPs, the shortest time required for correct identification of a speech stimulus) and accuracy of audiovisual gated speech stimuli (consonants, words, and final words in highly and less predictable sentences) presented in silence. In addition, we compared the IPs of audiovisual speech stimuli from the present study with auditory ones extracted from a previous study, to determine the impact of the addition of visual cues. Both participant groups achieved ceiling levels in terms of accuracy in the audiovisual identification of gated speech stimuli; however, the EHA group needed longer IPs for the audiovisual identification of consonants and words. The benefit of adding visual cues to auditory speech stimuli was more evident in the EHA group, as audiovisual presentation significantly shortened the IPs for consonants, words, and final words in less predictable sentences; in the ENH group, audiovisual presentation only shortened the IPs for consonants and words. In conclusion, although the audiovisual benefit was greater for EHA group, this group had inferior performance compared with the ENH group in terms of IPs when supportive semantic context was lacking. Consequently, EHA users needed the initial part of the audiovisual speech signal to be longer than did their counterparts with normal hearing to reach the same level of accuracy in the absence of a semantic context. PMID:27317667

  20. Comparison of Gated Audiovisual Speech Identification in Elderly Hearing Aid Users and Elderly Normal-Hearing Individuals: Effects of Adding Visual Cues to Auditory Speech Stimuli.

    PubMed

    Moradi, Shahram; Lidestam, Björn; Rönnberg, Jerker

    2016-06-17

    The present study compared elderly hearing aid (EHA) users (n = 20) with elderly normal-hearing (ENH) listeners (n = 20) in terms of isolation points (IPs, the shortest time required for correct identification of a speech stimulus) and accuracy of audiovisual gated speech stimuli (consonants, words, and final words in highly and less predictable sentences) presented in silence. In addition, we compared the IPs of audiovisual speech stimuli from the present study with auditory ones extracted from a previous study, to determine the impact of the addition of visual cues. Both participant groups achieved ceiling levels in terms of accuracy in the audiovisual identification of gated speech stimuli; however, the EHA group needed longer IPs for the audiovisual identification of consonants and words. The benefit of adding visual cues to auditory speech stimuli was more evident in the EHA group, as audiovisual presentation significantly shortened the IPs for consonants, words, and final words in less predictable sentences; in the ENH group, audiovisual presentation only shortened the IPs for consonants and words. In conclusion, although the audiovisual benefit was greater for EHA group, this group had inferior performance compared with the ENH group in terms of IPs when supportive semantic context was lacking. Consequently, EHA users needed the initial part of the audiovisual speech signal to be longer than did their counterparts with normal hearing to reach the same level of accuracy in the absence of a semantic context.

  1. Visualizing abstract information using motion properties of data-driven infoticles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vande Moere, Andrew; Mieusset, Kuk Hwan; Gross, Markus

    2004-06-01

    This paper presents a novel exploratory information visualization technique that allows users to analyze time-varying characteristics of large datasets within immersive virtual reality environments. This metaphor represents data objects as particles, coined infoticles, which are placed inside a three-dimensional scene. Forces correspond to specific data value conditions and influence matching infoticles according to the rules of Newtonian mechanics. In addition, infoticles are driven by a set of local behavior rules that react upon successive data updates, hereby generating distinct emergent motion typologies which are visually interpretable by users. These data patterns can be detected dynamically by observing the spatial transformations of infoticle streams, or statically, by interpreting the shapes of individual pathlines. This visualization method exploits the qualities of immersive virtual reality technology as it combines the characteristics of behavior generation and motion perception with the concepts of spatial awareness and stereoscopic vision. Infoticles are useful in visualizing time-varying characteristics of large, dynamic datasets because of their cognitively distinguishable and interpretative animation properties. The generation and evolution of infoticle patterns are based upon empirically defined grammatical rules. These visualization principles are demonstrated using the access logs of an internal knowledge document management website of a global consultancy company.

  2. Separability of Abstract-Category and Specific-Exemplar Visual Object Subsystems: Evidence from fMRI Pattern Analysis

    PubMed Central

    McMenamin, Brenton W.; Deason, Rebecca G.; Steele, Vaughn R.; Koutstaal, Wilma; Marsolek, Chad J.

    2014-01-01

    Previous research indicates that dissociable neural subsystems underlie abstract-category (AC) recognition and priming of objects (e.g., cat, piano) and specific-exemplar (SE) recognition and priming of objects (e.g., a calico cat, a different calico cat, a grand piano, etc.). However, the degree of separability between these subsystems is not known, despite the importance of this issue for assessing relevant theories. Visual object representations are widely distributed in visual cortex, thus a multivariate pattern analysis (MVPA) approach to analyzing functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) data may be critical for assessing the separability of different kinds of visual object processing. Here we examined the neural representations of visual object categories and visual object exemplars using multi-voxel pattern analyses of brain activity elicited in visual object processing areas during a repetition-priming task. In the encoding phase, participants viewed visual objects and the printed names of other objects. In the subsequent test phase, participants identified objects that were either same-exemplar primed, different-exemplar primed, word-primed, or unprimed. In visual object processing areas, classifiers were trained to distinguish same-exemplar primed objects from word-primed objects. Then, the abilities of these classifiers to discriminate different-exemplar primed objects and word-primed objects (reflecting AC priming) and to discriminate same-exemplar primed objects and different-exemplar primed objects (reflecting SE priming) was assessed. Results indicated that (a) repetition priming in occipital-temporal regions is organized asymmetrically, such that AC priming is more prevalent in the left hemisphere and SE priming is more prevalent in the right hemisphere, and (b) AC and SE subsystems are weakly modular, not strongly modular or unified. PMID:25528436

  3. The face evoked steady-state visual potentials are sensitive to the orientation, viewpoint, expression and configuration of the stimuli.

    PubMed

    Vakli, Pál; Németh, Kornél; Zimmer, Márta; Kovács, Gyula

    2014-12-01

    Previous studies demonstrated that the steady-state visual-evoked potential (SSVEP) is reduced to the repetition of the same identity face when compared with the presentation of different identities, suggesting high-level neural adaptation to face identity. Here we investigated whether the SSVEP is sensitive to the orientation, viewpoint, expression and configuration of faces (Experiment 1), and whether adaptation to identity at the level of the SSVEP is robust enough to generalize across these properties (Experiment 2). In Experiment 1, repeating the same identity face with continuously changing orientation, viewpoint or expression evoked a larger SSVEP than the repetition of an unchanged face, presumably reflecting a release of adaptation. A less robust effect was observed in the case of changes affecting face configuration. In Experiment 2, we found a similar release of adaptation for faces with changing orientation, viewpoint and configuration, as there was no difference between the SSVEP for the same and different identity faces. However, we found an adaptation effect for faces with changing expressions, suggesting that face identity coding, as reflected in the SSVEP, is largely independent of the emotion displayed by faces. Taken together, these results imply that the SSVEP taps high-level face representations which abstract away from the changeable aspects of the face and likely incorporate information about face configuration, but which are specific to the orientation and viewpoint of the face. PMID:25455428

  4. Plug and Play web-based visualization of mobile air monitoring data (Abstract)

    EPA Science Inventory

    EPA’s Real-Time Geospatial (RETIGO) Data Viewer web-based tool is a new program reducing the technical barrier to visualize and understand geospatial air data time series collected using wearable, bicycle-mounted, or vehicle-mounted air sensors. The RETIGO tool, with anticipated...

  5. Transient increases in choroidal thickness are consistently associated with brief daily visual stimuli that inhibit ocular growth in chicks.

    PubMed

    Nickla, Debora L

    2007-05-01

    In chickens, transient changes in choroidal thickness are found in conditions in which the eye is slowing its growth in response to visual episodes that prevent excessive elongation. To test the hypothesis that the choroidal and ocular growth responses are linked, we used a variety of "brief daily" stimuli known to ameliorate the development of myopia and assessed the concurrence of the responses. If the hypothesis is true, they should always be correlated. Form deprivation w/vision or strobe. Diffusers were worn for 5 days and removed for 2h of "vision" each day in: (a) one block of 2-h (n=16); or (b) two 1-h periods (n=10). Strobe. Birds were given 0.5h episodes of 12 Hz strobe at dawn and dusk (12h apart, n=11). Negative lenses w/vision or strobe. Lenses (-10D) were worn for 5 days and removed for 2h of vision each day (n=14). Strobe. Same as above (n=11). Darkness/brief vision or myopic defocus. Birds in constant darkness were given 2 daily 0.5h episodes of light 12h apart (n=6) or one daily 0.5h episode of +10D myopic defocus (n=6) for 4 days. Darkness/"frequent" or "infrequent" myopic defocus. Birds in constant darkness were given frequent (2 min x 14) or infrequent (1 min x 7) episodes of +10D myopic defocus for 4 days. In all experiments a control group had the myopia-inducing treatment but did not receive the visual stimulation. High frequency ultrasonography was done at the start and end of the experiment, and on the last day immediately prior to and 1h after the period of stimulation. Refractive errors were measured using a Hartinger's refractometer at the end of the experiment. We found that in 7 of the 8 conditions the development of myopia was inhibited. Form deprivation: vision or strobe vs control: -1.2 and -1.8 vs -9.8D. Negative lenses: vision or strobe vs control: -1.2 and -4.3 vs -8D. Constant dark: vision or myopic defocus vs control: -0.7 and 1.8 vs -1.8D. Constant dark: frequent myopic defocus vs control: 4.8 vs -0.4D (p<0.05 for all

  6. How to Make a Good Animation: A Grounded Cognition Model of How Visual Representation Design Affects the Construction of Abstract Physics Knowledge

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chen, Zhongzhou; Gladding, Gary

    2014-01-01

    Visual representations play a critical role in teaching physics. However, since we do not have a satisfactory understanding of how visual perception impacts the construction of abstract knowledge, most visual representations used in instructions are either created based on existing conventions or designed according to the instructor's…

  7. From the heart to the mind: cardiac vagal tone modulates top-down and bottom-up visual perception and attention to emotional stimuli

    PubMed Central

    Park, Gewnhi; Thayer, Julian F.

    2014-01-01

    The neurovisceral integration model (Thayer and Lane, 2000) posits that cardiac vagal tone, indexed by heart rate variability (HRV), can indicate the functional integrity of the neural networks implicated in emotion–cognition interactions. Our recent findings begin to disentangle how HRV is associated with both top-down and bottom-up cognitive processing of emotional stimuli. Higher resting HRV is associated with more adaptive and functional top-down and bottom-up cognitive modulation of emotional stimuli, which may facilitate effective emotion regulation. Conversely, lower resting HRV is associated with hyper-vigilant and maladaptive cognitive responses to emotional stimuli, which may impede emotion regulation. In the present paper, we recapitulate the neurovisceral integration model and review recent findings that shed light on the relationship between HRV and top-down and bottom-up visual perception and attention to emotional stimuli, which may play an important role in emotion regulation. Further implications of HRV on individual well-being and mental health are discussed. PMID:24817853

  8. Arnheim's Gestalt theory of visual balance: Examining the compositional structure of art photographs and abstract images

    PubMed Central

    McManus, I C; Stöver, Katharina; Kim, Do

    2011-01-01

    In Art and Visual Perception, Rudolf Arnheim, following on from Denman Ross's A Theory of Pure Design, proposed a Gestalt theory of visual composition. The current paper assesses a physicalist interpretation of Arnheim's theory, calculating an image's centre of mass (CoM). Three types of data are used: a large, representative collection of art photographs of recognised quality; croppings by experts and non-experts of photographs; and Ross and Arnheim's procedure of placing a frame around objects such as Arnheim's two black disks. Compared with control images, the CoM of art photographs was closer to an axis (horizontal, vertical, or diagonal), as was the case for photographic croppings. However, stronger, within-image, paired comparison studies, comparing art photographs with the CoM moved on or off an axis (the ‘gamma-ramp study’), or comparing adjacent croppings on or off an axis (the ‘spider-web study’), showed no support for the Arnheim–Ross theory. Finally, studies moving a frame around two disks, of different size, greyness, or background, did not support Arnheim's Gestalt theory. Although the detailed results did not support the Arnheim–Ross theory, several significant results were found which clearly require explanation by any adequate theory of the aesthetics of visual composition. PMID:23145250

  9. Arnheim's Gestalt theory of visual balance: Examining the compositional structure of art photographs and abstract images.

    PubMed

    McManus, I C; Stöver, Katharina; Kim, Do

    2011-01-01

    In Art and Visual Perception, Rudolf Arnheim, following on from Denman Ross's A Theory of Pure Design, proposed a Gestalt theory of visual composition. The current paper assesses a physicalist interpretation of Arnheim's theory, calculating an image's centre of mass (CoM). Three types of data are used: a large, representative collection of art photographs of recognised quality; croppings by experts and non-experts of photographs; and Ross and Arnheim's procedure of placing a frame around objects such as Arnheim's two black disks. Compared with control images, the CoM of art photographs was closer to an axis (horizontal, vertical, or diagonal), as was the case for photographic croppings. However, stronger, within-image, paired comparison studies, comparing art photographs with the CoM moved on or off an axis (the 'gamma-ramp study'), or comparing adjacent croppings on or off an axis (the 'spider-web study'), showed no support for the Arnheim-Ross theory. Finally, studies moving a frame around two disks, of different size, greyness, or background, did not support Arnheim's Gestalt theory. Although the detailed results did not support the Arnheim-Ross theory, several significant results were found which clearly require explanation by any adequate theory of the aesthetics of visual composition.

  10. MotionFlow: Visual Abstraction and Aggregation of Sequential Patterns in Human Motion Tracking Data.

    PubMed

    Jang, Sujin; Elmqvist, Niklas; Ramani, Karthik

    2016-01-01

    Pattern analysis of human motions, which is useful in many research areas, requires understanding and comparison of different styles of motion patterns. However, working with human motion tracking data to support such analysis poses great challenges. In this paper, we propose MotionFlow, a visual analytics system that provides an effective overview of various motion patterns based on an interactive flow visualization. This visualization formulates a motion sequence as transitions between static poses, and aggregates these sequences into a tree diagram to construct a set of motion patterns. The system also allows the users to directly reflect the context of data and their perception of pose similarities in generating representative pose states. We provide local and global controls over the partition-based clustering process. To support the users in organizing unstructured motion data into pattern groups, we designed a set of interactions that enables searching for similar motion sequences from the data, detailed exploration of data subsets, and creating and modifying the group of motion patterns. To evaluate the usability of MotionFlow, we conducted a user study with six researchers with expertise in gesture-based interaction design. They used MotionFlow to explore and organize unstructured motion tracking data. Results show that the researchers were able to easily learn how to use MotionFlow, and the system effectively supported their pattern analysis activities, including leveraging their perception and domain knowledge.

  11. Differential behavioral responsiveness to ipsilateral and contralateral visual stimuli produced by unilateral rewarding hypothalamic stimulation in the rat.

    PubMed

    Nakahara, D; Ikeda, T

    1984-06-01

    Rats were trained to respond to a visual cue signalling availability of brain reward on the left or the right side of a small chamber. Most of the rats began to respond more accurately to the visual cue presented on the side contralateral to brain stimulation than to the ipsilateral cue as the training progressed. The facilitation of the rat's response to the contralaterally presented visual cue was more evident when tested with visual cues presented simultaneously in both ipsilateral and contralateral sides. However, when tested with visual cues removed from both sides, this tendency became unclear. Additionally, monocular training gave evidence of identifying the visual cue ipsilateral to the open eye, irrespective of the electrode side. The results are interpreted as signifying that the ipsilateral hemisphere is activated by the brain stimulus and leads to improved discrimination of the contralateral visual cue because the visual system in the rat is crossed.

  12. Emotional memory enhancement in respect of positive visual stimuli in Alzheimer's disease emerges after rich and deep encoding.

    PubMed

    Sava, Alina-Alexandra; Paquet, Claire; Krolak-Salmon, Pierre; Dumurgier, Julien; Hugon, Jacques; Chainay, Hanna

    2015-04-01

    Healthy participants remember emotional stimuli better than neutral stimuli. In normal, older adults this emotional enhancement of memory (EEM) was mostly seen in respect of positive stimuli (positivity bias) after rich and deep encoding. The results relating to this effect in Alzheimer's disease (AD) patients are fairly inconsistent. The goal of the present study was to ascertain whether EEM in AD patients depends on the depth and the richness of encoding. Twenty-one patients with mild-to-moderate AD and 23 age-and-education-matched controls completed two study phases, each followed by a retrieval phase. The first study phase consisted of a natural/man-made categorization task followed by a recognition task, whereas the second, which involved the stimuli used in the recognition task, allowed for richer and deeper encoding as a result of repetition and naming of the stimuli and presentation of the same semantic cues at encoding and retrieval. The second study phase was followed by free and cued recall tasks and a recognition task. After the first study phase we observed EEM in respect of negative and positive stimuli in controls, but not in AD patients. After the second study phase, the positivity bias was observed in the free recall task in controls but not in AD patients. In the cued recall and recognition tasks, however, both groups showed the positivity bias. Based on our results, AD patients present a positivity memory bias when encoding is sufficiently rich and deep, and when support is provided at the time of retrieval (cued recall or recognition tasks). PMID:25681651

  13. The Effects of Visual Stimuli on the Spoken Narrative Performance of School-Age African American Children

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mills, Monique T.

    2015-01-01

    Purpose: This study investigated the fictional narrative performance of school-age African American children across 3 elicitation contexts that differed in the type of visual stimulus presented. Method: A total of 54 children in Grades 2 through 5 produced narratives across 3 different visual conditions: no visual, picture sequence, and single…

  14. Interhemispheric differences of fMRI responses to visual stimuli in patients with side-fixed migraine aura.

    PubMed

    Hougaard, Anders; Amin, Faisal Mohammad; Hoffmann, Michael B; Rostrup, Egill; Larsson, Henrik B W; Asghar, Mohammad Sohail; Larsen, Vibeke Andrée; Olesen, Jes; Ashina, Messoud

    2014-06-01

    Migraine sufferers with aura often report photosensitivity and visual discomfort outside of attacks and many consider bright or flickering light an attack-precipitating factor. The nature of this visual hypersensitivity and its relation to the underlying pathophysiology of the migraine aura is unknown. Using fMRI measurements during visual stimulation we examined the visual cortical responsiveness of patients with migraine with aura. We applied a within-patient design by assessing functional interhemispheric differences in patients consistently experiencing visual aura in the same visual hemifield. We recruited 20 patients with frequent side-fixed visual aura attacks (≥90% of auras occurring in the same visual hemifield) and 20 age and sex matched healthy controls and compared the fMRI blood oxygenation level dependent (BOLD) responses to visual stimulation between symptomatic and asymptomatic hemispheres during the interictal phase and between migraine patients and controls. BOLD responses were selectively increased in the symptomatic hemispheres. This was found in the inferior parietal lobule (P = 0.002), the inferior frontal gyrus (P = 0.003), and the superior parietal lobule (P = 0.017). The affected cortical areas comprise a visually driven functional network involved in oculomotor control, guidance of movement, motion perception, visual attention, and visual spatial memory. The patients also had significantly increased response in the same cortical areas when compared to controls (P < 0.05). We discovered a lateralized alteration of a visually driven functional network in patients with side-fixed aura. These findings suggest a hyperexcitability of the visual system in the interictal phase of migraine with visual aura.

  15. Peripheral injury induces long-term sensitization of defensive responses to visual and tactile stimuli in the squid Loligo pealeii, Lesueur 1821

    PubMed Central

    Crook, Robyn J.; Lewis, Trevor; Hanlon, Roger T.; Walters, Edgar T.

    2011-01-01

    SUMMARY Survivable injuries are a common yet costly experience. The ability to sense and respond to noxious stimuli is an almost universal trait, and prolonged behavioral alterations, including sensitization to touch and other stimuli, may function to ameliorate fitness costs associated with injury. Cephalopods can modify their behavior by learned association with noxious electric shock, but non-associative alterations of behavioral responses after tissue injury have not been studied. The aim of this study was to make the first systematic investigations in any cephalopod of behavioral responses and alterations elicited by explicit, minor injury. By testing responsiveness in the longfin squid, Loligo pealeii, to the approach and contact of an innocuous filament applied to different parts of the body both before and after injury to the distal third of one arm, we show that a cephalopod expresses behavioral alterations persisting for at least 2 days after injury. These alterations parallel forms of nociceptive plasticity in other animals, including general and site-specific sensitization to tactile stimuli. A novel finding is that hyper-responsiveness after injury extends to visual stimuli. Injured squid are more likely to employ crypsis than escape in response to an approaching visual stimulus shortly after injury, but initiate escape earlier and continue escape behaviors for longer when tested from 1 to 48 h after injury. Injury failed to elicit overt wound-directed behavior (e.g. grooming) or change hunting success. Our results show that long-lasting nociceptive sensitization occurs in cephalopods, and suggest that it may function to reduce predation risk after injury. PMID:21900465

  16. Biobibliometrics: information retrieval and visualization from co-occurrences of gene names in Medline abstracts.

    PubMed

    Stapley, B J; Benoit, G

    2000-01-01

    Successful information retrieval from biomedical literature databases is becoming increasingly difficult. We have developed a prototype system for retrieving and visualizing information from literature and genomic databases using gene names. The premise of our work is that, if two genes have a related biological function, the co-occurrence of two gene names (or aliases of those genes) within the biomedical literature is more likely. From a collection of Medline documents, we have extracted the number of co-occurrences of every pair of Saccharomyces cerevisiae genes. The query is automatically conflated to include gene aliases as well. In addition, the retrieved document set can be filtered by the user with a MeSH term. From this co-occurrence data we construct a matrix that contains dissimilarity measurements of every pair of genes, based on their joint and individual occurrence statistics. A graph is generated from this matrix, with node and edge inclusion being determined by a user-defined threshold. Nodes of the graph represent genes, while edge lengths are a function of the occurrence of the two genes within the literature. Nodes can be hypertext-linked to sequence databases, while edges are linked to those Medline documents that generated them. The system is a tool for efficiently exploring the biomedical information landscape and may act as a inference network.

  17. Brain Processing of Visual Stimuli Representing Sexual Penetration versus Core and Animal-Reminder Disgust in Women with Lifelong Vaginismus

    PubMed Central

    Borg, Charmaine; Georgiadis, Janniko R.; Renken, Remco J.; Spoelstra, Symen K.; Weijmar Schultz, Willibrord; de Jong, Peter J.

    2014-01-01

    It has been proposed that disgust evolved to protect humans from contamination. Through eliciting the overwhelming urge to withdraw from the disgusting stimuli, it would facilitate avoidance of contact with pathogens. The physical proximity implied in sexual intercourse provides ample opportunity for contamination and may thus set the stage for eliciting pathogen disgust. Building on this, it has been argued that the involuntary muscle contraction characteristic of vaginismus (i.e., inability to have vaginal penetration) may be elicited by the prospect of penetration by potential contaminants. To further investigate this disgust-based interpretation of vaginismus (in DSM-5 classified as a Genito-Pelvic Pain/Penetration Disorder, GPPPD) we used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to examine if women with vaginismus (n = 21) show relatively strong convergence in their brain responses towards sexual penetration- and disgust-related pictures compared to sexually asymptomatic women (n = 21) and women suffering from vulvar pain (dyspareunia/also classified as GPPPD in the DSM-5, n = 21). At the subjective level, both clinical groups rated penetration stimuli as more disgusting than asymptomatic women. However, the brain responses to penetration stimuli did not differ between groups. In addition, there was considerable conjoint brain activity in response to penetration and disgust pictures, which yield for both animal-reminder (e.g., mutilation) and core (e.g., rotten food) disgust domains. However, this overlap in brain activation was similar for all groups. A possible explanation for the lack of vaginismus-specific brain responses lies in the alleged female ambiguity (procreation/pleasure vs. contamination/disgust) toward penetration: generally in women a (default) disgust response tendency may prevail in the absence of sexual readiness. Accordingly, a critical next step would be to examine the processing of penetration stimuli following the

  18. Intuitively detecting what is hidden within a visual mask: familiar-novel discrimination and threat detection for unidentified stimuli.

    PubMed

    Cleary, Anne M; Ryals, Anthony J; Nomi, Jason S

    2013-10-01

    Recognition without identification is the finding that, among recognition test items that go unidentified (as when a word is unidentified from a fragment), participants can discriminate those that were studied from those that were unstudied. In the present study, we extended this phenomenon to the more life-like situation of discriminating known from novel stimuli. Pictures of famous and nonfamous faces (Exp. 1), famous and nonfamous scenes (Exp. 2), and threatening and nonthreatening images (Exp. 3) were filtered in order to impede identification. As in list-learning recognition-without-identification paradigms, participants attempted to identify each image (e.g., whose face it was, what scene it was, or what was in the picture) and rated how familiar the image seemed on a scale of 0 (very unfamiliar) to 10 (very familiar). Among the unidentified stimuli, higher familiarity ratings were given to famous than to nonfamous faces (Exp. 1) and scenes (Exp. 2), and to threatening than to nonthreatening living/animate (but not to nonliving/nonanimate) images (Exp. 3). These findings suggest that even when a stimulus is too occluded to allow for conscious identification, enough information can be processed to allow a sense of familiarity or novelty with it, which appears also to be related to the sense of whether or not a living creature is a threat. That the sense of familiarity for unidentified stimuli may be related to threat detection for living or animate things suggests that it may be an adaptive aspect of human memory. PMID:23606041

  19. Summation in autoshaping is affected by the similarity of the visual stimuli to the stimulation they replace.

    PubMed

    Pearce, John M; Redhead, Edward S; George, David N

    2002-04-01

    Pigeons received autoshaping with 2 stimuli, A and B, presented in adjacent regions on a television screen. Conditioning with each stimulus was therefore accompanied by stimulation that was displaced from the screen whenever the other stimulus was presented. Test trials with AB revealed stronger responding if this displaced stimulation was similar to, rather than different from, A and B. For a further experiment the training just described included trials with A and B accompanied by an additional, similar, stimulus. Responding during test trials with AB was stronger if the additional trials signaled the presence rather than the absence of food. The results are explained with a configural theory of conditioning.

  20. Representations of modality-specific affective processing for visual and auditory stimuli derived from functional magnetic resonance imaging data.

    PubMed

    Shinkareva, Svetlana V; Wang, Jing; Kim, Jongwan; Facciani, Matthew J; Baucom, Laura B; Wedell, Douglas H

    2014-07-01

    There is converging evidence that people rapidly and automatically encode affective dimensions of objects, events, and environments that they encounter in the normal course of their daily routines. An important research question is whether affective representations differ with sensory modality. This research examined the nature of the dependency of affect and sensory modality at a whole-brain level of analysis in an incidental affective processing paradigm. Participants were presented with picture and sound stimuli that differed in positive or negative valence in an event-related functional magnetic resonance imaging experiment. Global statistical tests, applied at a level of the individual, demonstrated significant sensitivity to valence within modality, but not valence across modalities. Modality-general and modality-specific valence hypotheses predict distinctly different multidimensional patterns of the stimulus conditions. Examination of lower dimensional representation of the data demonstrated separable dimensions for valence processing within each modality. These results provide support for modality-specific valence processing in an incidental affective processing paradigm at a whole-brain level of analysis. Future research should further investigate how stimulus-specific emotional decoding may be mediated by the physical properties of the stimuli.

  1. Effects of Unilateral Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation of Left Prefrontal Cortex on Processing and Memory of Emotional Visual Stimuli

    PubMed Central

    Balzarotti, Stefania

    2016-01-01

    The dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) is generally thought to be involved in affect and emotional processing; however, the specific contribution of each hemisphere continues to be debated. In the present study, we employed unilateral tDCS to test the unique contribution of left DLPFC in the encoding and retrieval of emotional stimuli in healthy subjects. Forty-two right handed undergraduate students received either anodal, cathodal or sham stimulation of left DLPFC while viewing neutral, pleasant, and unpleasant pictures. After completing a filler task, participants were asked to remember as many pictures as possible. Results showed that participants were able to remember a larger amount of emotional (both pleasant and unpleasant) pictures than of neutral ones, regardless of the type of tDCS condition. Participants who received anodal stimulation recalled a significantly higher number of pleasant images than participants in the sham and cathodal conditions, while no differences emerged in the recall of neutral and unpleasant pictures. We conclude that our results provide some support to the role of left prefrontal cortex in the encoding and retrieval of pleasant stimuli. PMID:27433807

  2. Auditory scene analysis and sonified visual images. Does consonance negatively impact on object formation when using complex sonified stimuli?

    PubMed Central

    Brown, David J.; Simpson, Andrew J. R.; Proulx, Michael J.

    2015-01-01

    A critical task for the brain is the sensory representation and identification of perceptual objects in the world. When the visual sense is impaired, hearing and touch must take primary roles and in recent times compensatory techniques have been developed that employ the tactile or auditory system as a substitute for the visual system. Visual-to-auditory sonifications provide a complex, feature-based auditory representation that must be decoded and integrated into an object-based representation by the listener. However, we don’t yet know what role the auditory system plays in the object integration stage and whether the principles of auditory scene analysis apply. Here we used coarse sonified images in a two-tone discrimination task to test whether auditory feature-based representations of visual objects would be confounded when their features conflicted with the principles of auditory consonance. We found that listeners (N = 36) performed worse in an object recognition task when the auditory feature-based representation was harmonically consonant. We also found that this conflict was not negated with the provision of congruent audio–visual information. The findings suggest that early auditory processes of harmonic grouping dominate the object formation process and that the complexity of the signal, and additional sensory information have limited effect on this. PMID:26528202

  3. Visual processing of rapidly presented stimuli is normalized in Parkinson's disease when proximal stimulus strength is enhanced.

    PubMed

    Amick, Melissa M; Cronin-Golomb, Alice; Gilmore, Grover C

    2003-12-01

    Deficient perception and cognition in Parkinson's disease (PD) has been attributed to slow information processing, but an alternative explanation may be reduced signal strength. In 18 nondemented individuals with PD and 15 healthy adults, we enhanced the contrast level of rapidly flashed masked letters. The PD group required significantly higher contrast to reach criterion (80% accuracy). Normal motion detection in these participants indicated no gross, general dysfunction of the dorsal visual processing stream. These results suggest that putatively slowed processing in PD may be an artifact of reduced signal strength arising from depletion of dopamine in retina or cortical visual areas.

  4. Visual Stimuli Evoked Action Potentials Trigger Rapidly Propagating Dendritic Calcium Transients in the Frog Optic Tectum Layer 6 Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Svirskis, Gytis; Baranauskas, Gytis; Svirskiene, Natasa; Tkatch, Tatiana

    2015-01-01

    The superior colliculus in mammals or the optic tectum in amphibians is a major visual information processing center responsible for generation of orientating responses such as saccades in monkeys or prey catching avoidance behavior in frogs. The conserved structure function of the superior colliculus the optic tectum across distant species such as frogs, birds monkeys permits to draw rather general conclusions after studying a single species. We chose the frog optic tectum because we are able to perform whole-cell voltage-clamp recordings fluorescence imaging of tectal neurons while they respond to a visual stimulus. In the optic tectum of amphibians most visual information is processed by pear-shaped neurons possessing long dendritic branches, which receive the majority of synapses originating from the retinal ganglion cells. Since the first step of the retinal input integration is performed on these dendrites, it is important to know whether this integration is enhanced by active dendritic properties. We demonstrate that rapid calcium transients coinciding with the visual stimulus evoked action potentials in the somatic recordings can be readily detected up to the fine branches of these dendrites. These transients were blocked by calcium channel blockers nifedipine CdCl2 indicating that calcium entered dendrites via voltage-activated L-type calcium channels. The high speed of calcium transient propagation, >300 μm in <10 ms, is consistent with the notion that action potentials, actively propagating along dendrites, open voltage-gated L-type calcium channels causing rapid calcium concentration transients in the dendrites. We conclude that such activation by somatic action potentials of the dendritic voltage gated calcium channels in the close vicinity to the synapses formed by axons of the retinal ganglion cells may facilitate visual information processing in the principal neurons of the frog optic tectum. PMID:26414356

  5. You Don’t See What I See: Individual Differences in the Perception of Meaning from Visual Stimuli

    PubMed Central

    Partos, Timea R.; Cropper, Simon J.; Rawlings, David

    2016-01-01

    Everyone has their own unique version of the visual world and there has been growing interest in understanding the way that personality shapes one’s perception. Here, we investigated meaningful visual experiences in relation to the personality dimension of schizotypy. In a novel approach to this issue, a non-clinical sample of subjects (total n = 197) were presented with calibrated images of scenes, cartoons and faces of varying visibility embedded in noise; the spatial properties of the images were constructed to mimic the natural statistics of the environment. In two experiments, subjects were required to indicate what they saw in a large number of unique images, both with and without actual meaningful structure. The first experiment employed an open-ended response paradigm and used a variety of different images in noise; the second experiment only presented a series of faces embedded in noise, and required a forced-choice response from the subjects. The results in all conditions indicated that a high positive schizotypy score was associated with an increased tendency to perceive complex meaning in images comprised purely of random visual noise. Individuals high in positive schizotypy seemed to be employing a looser criterion (response bias) to determine what constituted a ‘meaningful’ image, while also being significantly less sensitive at the task than those low in positive schizotypy. Our results suggest that differences in perceptual performance for individuals high in positive schizotypy are not related to increased suggestibility or susceptibility to instruction, as had previously been suggested. Instead, the observed reductions in sensitivity along with increased response bias toward seeing something that is not there, indirectly implicated subtle neurophysiological differences associated with the personality dimension of schizotypy, that are theoretically pertinent to the continuum of schizophrenia and hallucination-proneness. PMID:26954696

  6. The ups and downs of global motion perception: a paradoxical advantage for smaller stimuli in the aging visual system

    PubMed Central

    Hutchinson, Claire V.; Ledgeway, Tim; Allen, Harriet A.

    2014-01-01

    Recent evidence suggests that normal aging is typically accompanied by impairment in the ability to perceive the global (overall) motion of visual objects in the world. The purpose of this study was to examine the interplay between age-related changes in the ability to perceive translational global motion (up vs. down) and important factors such as the spatial extent (size) over which movement occurs and how cluttered the moving elements are (density). We used random dot kinematograms (RDKs) and measured motion coherence thresholds (% signal elements required to reliably discriminate global direction) for young and older adults. We did so as a function of the number and density of local signal elements, and the aperture area in which they were displayed. We found that older adults’ performance was relatively unaffected by changes in aperture size, the number and density of local elements in the display. In young adults, performance was also insensitive to element number and density but was modulated markedly by display size, such that motion coherence thresholds decreased as aperture area increased (participants required fewer local elements to move coherently to determine the overall image direction). With the smallest apertures tested, young participants’ motion coherence thresholds were considerably higher (~1.5 times worse) than those of their older counterparts. Therefore, when RDK size is relatively small, older participants were actually better than young participants at processing global motion. These findings suggest that the normal (disease-free) aging process does not lead to a general decline in perceptual ability and in some cases may be visually advantageous. The results have important implications for the understanding of the consequences of aging on visual function and a number of potential explanations are explored. These include age-related changes in spatial summation, reduced cortical inhibition, neural blur and attentional resource

  7. You Don't See What I See: Individual Differences in the Perception of Meaning from Visual Stimuli.

    PubMed

    Partos, Timea R; Cropper, Simon J; Rawlings, David

    2016-01-01

    Everyone has their own unique version of the visual world and there has been growing interest in understanding the way that personality shapes one's perception. Here, we investigated meaningful visual experiences in relation to the personality dimension of schizotypy. In a novel approach to this issue, a non-clinical sample of subjects (total n = 197) were presented with calibrated images of scenes, cartoons and faces of varying visibility embedded in noise; the spatial properties of the images were constructed to mimic the natural statistics of the environment. In two experiments, subjects were required to indicate what they saw in a large number of unique images, both with and without actual meaningful structure. The first experiment employed an open-ended response paradigm and used a variety of different images in noise; the second experiment only presented a series of faces embedded in noise, and required a forced-choice response from the subjects. The results in all conditions indicated that a high positive schizotypy score was associated with an increased tendency to perceive complex meaning in images comprised purely of random visual noise. Individuals high in positive schizotypy seemed to be employing a looser criterion (response bias) to determine what constituted a 'meaningful' image, while also being significantly less sensitive at the task than those low in positive schizotypy. Our results suggest that differences in perceptual performance for individuals high in positive schizotypy are not related to increased suggestibility or susceptibility to instruction, as had previously been suggested. Instead, the observed reductions in sensitivity along with increased response bias toward seeing something that is not there, indirectly implicated subtle neurophysiological differences associated with the personality dimension of schizotypy, that are theoretically pertinent to the continuum of schizophrenia and hallucination-proneness. PMID:26954696

  8. Effect of instructive visual stimuli on neurofeedback training for motor imagery-based brain-computer interface.

    PubMed

    Kondo, Toshiyuki; Saeki, Midori; Hayashi, Yoshikatsu; Nakayashiki, Kosei; Takata, Yohei

    2015-10-01

    Event-related desynchronization (ERD) of the electroencephalogram (EEG) from the motor cortex is associated with execution, observation, and mental imagery of motor tasks. Generation of ERD by motor imagery (MI) has been widely used for brain-computer interfaces (BCIs) linked to neuroprosthetics and other motor assistance devices. Control of MI-based BCIs can be acquired by neurofeedback training to reliably induce MI-associated ERD. To develop more effective training conditions, we investigated the effect of static and dynamic visual representations of target movements (a picture of forearms or a video clip of hand grasping movements) during the BCI neurofeedback training. After 4 consecutive training days, the group that performed MI while viewing the video showed significant improvement in generating MI-associated ERD compared with the group that viewed the static image. This result suggests that passively observing the target movement during MI would improve the associated mental imagery and enhance MI-based BCIs skills.

  9. The multifocal visual evoked potential and cone-isolating stimuli: implications for L- to M-cone ratios and normalization.

    PubMed

    Hood, Donald C; Yu, Alice L; Zhang, Xian; Albrecht, Johannes; Jägle, Herbert; Sharpe, Lindsay T

    2002-01-01

    Multifocal visual evoked potentials (mfVEP) were recorded with a pattern-reversing display that modulated only the long wavelength-sensitive (L) cones or only the middle wavelength-sensitive (M) cones. Outside the central 5.8 degrees (radius), the ratio of the amplitudes of the mfVEP responses to L- and M-cone modulation varied across the six subjects, ranging from 1.1 to 1.7. The responses from the central 1 degrees (radius) showed a substantially lower ratio, ranging from 0.8 to 1.1 (average of 0.9). The variation among individuals outside the central fovea is probably due to differences in the ratio of the L/M cone input to both magno- and parvocellular pathways. The substantially lower ratios for the central responses is consistent with an L/M cone ratio closer to 1.0 in the central 1 degrees and/or an adjustment in the gain of the L- versus M-cone contributions to the central parvocellular pathways. Taking into consideration evidence from other techniques, we believe it is unlikely that most individuals have a L/M cone ratio of 1.0 in the fovea. Instead, it appears that there is a change in gain before the mfVEP is generated in area 17.

  10. PLDAPS: A Hardware Architecture and Software Toolbox for Neurophysiology Requiring Complex Visual Stimuli and Online Behavioral Control.

    PubMed

    Eastman, Kyler M; Huk, Alexander C

    2012-01-01

    Neurophysiological studies in awake, behaving primates (both human and non-human) have focused with increasing scrutiny on the temporal relationship between neural signals and behaviors. Consequently, laboratories are often faced with the problem of developing experimental equipment that can support data recording with high temporal precision and also be flexible enough to accommodate a wide variety of experimental paradigms. To this end, we have developed a MATLAB toolbox that integrates several modern pieces of equipment, but still grants experimenters the flexibility of a high-level programming language. Our toolbox takes advantage of three popular and powerful technologies: the Plexon apparatus for neurophysiological recordings (Plexon, Inc., Dallas, TX, USA), a Datapixx peripheral (Vpixx Technologies, Saint-Bruno, QC, Canada) for control of analog, digital, and video input-output signals, and the Psychtoolbox MATLAB toolbox for stimulus generation (Brainard, 1997; Pelli, 1997; Kleiner et al., 2007). The PLDAPS ("Platypus") system is designed to support the study of the visual systems of awake, behaving primates during multi-electrode neurophysiological recordings, but can be easily applied to other related domains. Despite its wide range of capabilities and support for cutting-edge video displays and neural recording systems, the PLDAPS system is simple enough for someone with basic MATLAB programming skills to design their own experiments. PMID:22319490

  11. PLDAPS: A Hardware Architecture and Software Toolbox for Neurophysiology Requiring Complex Visual Stimuli and Online Behavioral Control.

    PubMed

    Eastman, Kyler M; Huk, Alexander C

    2012-01-01

    Neurophysiological studies in awake, behaving primates (both human and non-human) have focused with increasing scrutiny on the temporal relationship between neural signals and behaviors. Consequently, laboratories are often faced with the problem of developing experimental equipment that can support data recording with high temporal precision and also be flexible enough to accommodate a wide variety of experimental paradigms. To this end, we have developed a MATLAB toolbox that integrates several modern pieces of equipment, but still grants experimenters the flexibility of a high-level programming language. Our toolbox takes advantage of three popular and powerful technologies: the Plexon apparatus for neurophysiological recordings (Plexon, Inc., Dallas, TX, USA), a Datapixx peripheral (Vpixx Technologies, Saint-Bruno, QC, Canada) for control of analog, digital, and video input-output signals, and the Psychtoolbox MATLAB toolbox for stimulus generation (Brainard, 1997; Pelli, 1997; Kleiner et al., 2007). The PLDAPS ("Platypus") system is designed to support the study of the visual systems of awake, behaving primates during multi-electrode neurophysiological recordings, but can be easily applied to other related domains. Despite its wide range of capabilities and support for cutting-edge video displays and neural recording systems, the PLDAPS system is simple enough for someone with basic MATLAB programming skills to design their own experiments.

  12. Deficits in narrative discourse elicited by visual stimuli are already present in patients with mild cognitive impairment

    PubMed Central

    Drummond, Cláudia; Coutinho, Gabriel; Fonseca, Rochele Paz; Assunção, Naima; Teldeschi, Alina; de Oliveira-Souza, Ricardo; Moll, Jorge; Tovar-Moll, Fernanda; Mattos, Paulo

    2015-01-01

    Language batteries used to assess the skills of elderly individuals, such as naming and semantic verbal fluency, present some limitations in differentiating healthy controls from patients with amnestic mild cognitive impairment (a-MCI). Deficits in narrative discourse occur early in dementia caused by Alzheimer's disease (AD), and the narrative discourse abilities of a-MCI patients are poorly documented. The present study sought to propose and evaluate parameters for investigating narrative discourse in these populations. After a pilot study of 30 healthy subjects who served as a preliminary investigation of macro- and micro-linguistic aspects, 77 individuals (patients with AD and a-MCI and a control group) were evaluated. The experimental task required the participants to narrate a story based on a sequence of actions visually presented. The Control and AD groups differed in all parameters except narrative time and the total number of words recalled. The a-MCI group displayed mild discursive difficulties that were characterized as an intermediate stage between the Control and AD groups' performances. The a-MCI and Control groups differed from the AD group with respect to global coherence, discourse type and referential cohesion. The a-MCI and AD groups were similar to one another but differed from the Control group with respect to the type of words recalled, the repetition of words in the same sentence, the narrative structure and the inclusion of irrelevant propositions in the narrative. The narrative parameter that best distinguished the three groups was the speech effectiveness index. The proposed task was able to reveal differences between healthy controls and groups with cognitive decline. According to our findings, patients with a-MCI already present narrative deficits that are characterized by mild discursive difficulties that are less severe than those found in patients with AD. PMID:26074814

  13. Deficits in narrative discourse elicited by visual stimuli are already present in patients with mild cognitive impairment.

    PubMed

    Drummond, Cláudia; Coutinho, Gabriel; Fonseca, Rochele Paz; Assunção, Naima; Teldeschi, Alina; de Oliveira-Souza, Ricardo; Moll, Jorge; Tovar-Moll, Fernanda; Mattos, Paulo

    2015-01-01

    Language batteries used to assess the skills of elderly individuals, such as naming and semantic verbal fluency, present some limitations in differentiating healthy controls from patients with amnestic mild cognitive impairment (a-MCI). Deficits in narrative discourse occur early in dementia caused by Alzheimer's disease (AD), and the narrative discourse abilities of a-MCI patients are poorly documented. The present study sought to propose and evaluate parameters for investigating narrative discourse in these populations. After a pilot study of 30 healthy subjects who served as a preliminary investigation of macro- and micro-linguistic aspects, 77 individuals (patients with AD and a-MCI and a control group) were evaluated. The experimental task required the participants to narrate a story based on a sequence of actions visually presented. The Control and AD groups differed in all parameters except narrative time and the total number of words recalled. The a-MCI group displayed mild discursive difficulties that were characterized as an intermediate stage between the Control and AD groups' performances. The a-MCI and Control groups differed from the AD group with respect to global coherence, discourse type and referential cohesion. The a-MCI and AD groups were similar to one another but differed from the Control group with respect to the type of words recalled, the repetition of words in the same sentence, the narrative structure and the inclusion of irrelevant propositions in the narrative. The narrative parameter that best distinguished the three groups was the speech effectiveness index. The proposed task was able to reveal differences between healthy controls and groups with cognitive decline. According to our findings, patients with a-MCI already present narrative deficits that are characterized by mild discursive difficulties that are less severe than those found in patients with AD.

  14. Effects of Dietary Protein and Fiber at Breakfast on Appetite, ad Libitum Energy Intake at Lunch, and Neural Responses to Visual Food Stimuli in Overweight Adults

    PubMed Central

    Sayer, R. Drew; Amankwaah, Akua F.; Tamer, Gregory G.; Chen, Ningning; Wright, Amy J.; Tregellas, Jason R.; Cornier, Marc-Andre; Kareken, David A.; Talavage, Thomas M.; McCrory, Megan A.; Campbell, Wayne W.

    2016-01-01

    Increasing either protein or fiber at mealtimes has relatively modest effects on ingestive behavior. Whether protein and fiber have additive or interactive effects on ingestive behavior is not known. Fifteen overweight adults (5 female, 10 male; BMI: 27.1 ± 0.2 kg/m2; aged 26 ± 1 year) consumed four breakfast meals in a randomized crossover manner (normal protein (12 g) + normal fiber (2 g), normal protein (12 g) + high fiber (8 g), high protein (25 g) + normal fiber (2 g), high protein (25 g) + high fiber (8 g)). The amount of protein and fiber consumed at breakfast did not influence postprandial appetite or ad libitum energy intake at lunch. In the fasting-state, visual food stimuli elicited significant responses in the bilateral insula and amygdala and left orbitofrontal cortex. Contrary to our hypotheses, postprandial right insula responses were lower after consuming normal protein vs. high protein breakfasts. Postprandial responses in other a priori brain regions were not significantly influenced by protein or fiber intake at breakfast. In conclusion, these data do not support increasing dietary protein and fiber at breakfast as effective strategies for modulating neural reward processing and acute ingestive behavior in overweight adults. PMID:26742068

  15. Conjoint control of hippocampal place cell firing by two visual stimuli. Ii. A vector-field theory that predicts modifications of the representation of the environment.

    PubMed

    Fenton, A A; Csizmadia, G; Muller, R U

    2000-08-01

    Changing the angular separation between two visual stimuli attached to the wall of a recording cylinder causes the firing fields of place cells to move relative to each other, as though the representation of the floor undergoes a topological distortion. The displacement of the firing field center of each cell is a vector whose length is equal to the linear displacement and whose angle indicates the direction that the field center moves in the environment. Based on the observation that neighboring fields move in similar ways, whereas widely separated fields tend to move relative to each other, we develop an empirical vector-field model that accounts for the stated effects of changing the card separation. We then go on to show that the same vector-field equation predicts additional aspects of the experimental results. In one example, we demonstrate that place cell firing fields undergo distortions of shape after the card separation is changed, as though different parts of the same field are affected by the stimulus constellation in the same fashion as fields at different locations. We conclude that the vector-field formalism reflects the organization of the place-cell representation of the environment for the current case, and through suitable modification may be very useful for describing motions of firing patterns induced by a wide variety of stimulus manipulations.

  16. Effects of Dietary Protein and Fiber at Breakfast on Appetite, ad Libitum Energy Intake at Lunch, and Neural Responses to Visual Food Stimuli in Overweight Adults.

    PubMed

    Sayer, R Drew; Amankwaah, Akua F; Tamer, Gregory G; Chen, Ningning; Wright, Amy J; Tregellas, Jason R; Cornier, Marc-Andre; Kareken, David A; Talavage, Thomas M; McCrory, Megan A; Campbell, Wayne W

    2016-01-01

    Increasing either protein or fiber at mealtimes has relatively modest effects on ingestive behavior. Whether protein and fiber have additive or interactive effects on ingestive behavior is not known. Fifteen overweight adults (5 female, 10 male; BMI: 27.1 ± 0.2 kg/m²; aged 26 ± 1 year) consumed four breakfast meals in a randomized crossover manner (normal protein (12 g) + normal fiber (2 g), normal protein (12 g) + high fiber (8 g), high protein (25 g) + normal fiber (2 g), high protein (25 g) + high fiber (8 g)). The amount of protein and fiber consumed at breakfast did not influence postprandial appetite or ad libitum energy intake at lunch. In the fasting-state, visual food stimuli elicited significant responses in the bilateral insula and amygdala and left orbitofrontal cortex. Contrary to our hypotheses, postprandial right insula responses were lower after consuming normal protein vs. high protein breakfasts. Postprandial responses in other a priori brain regions were not significantly influenced by protein or fiber intake at breakfast. In conclusion, these data do not support increasing dietary protein and fiber at breakfast as effective strategies for modulating neural reward processing and acute ingestive behavior in overweight adults.

  17. Why two "Distractors" are better than one: modeling the effect of non-target auditory and tactile stimuli on visual saccadic reaction time.

    PubMed

    Diederich, Adele; Colonius, Hans

    2007-05-01

    Saccadic reaction time (SRT) was measured in a focused attention task with a visual target stimulus (LED) and auditory (white noise burst) and tactile (vibration applied to palm) stimuli presented as non-targets at five different onset times (SOAs) with respect to the target. Mean SRT was reduced (i) when the number of non-targets was increased and (ii) when target and non-targets were all presented in the same hemifield; (iii) this facilitation first increases and then decreases as the time point of presenting the non-targets is shifted from early to late relative to the target presentation. These results are consistent with the time-window-of-integration (TWIN) model (Colonius and Diederich in J Cogn Neurosci 16:1000-1009, 2004) which distinguishes a peripheral stage of independent sensory channels racing against each other from a second stage of neural integration of the input and preparation of an oculomotor response. Cross-modal interaction manifests itself in an increase or decrease of second stage processing time. For the first time, without making specific distributional assumptions on the processing times, TWIN is shown to yield numerical estimates for the facilitative effects of the number of non-targets and of the spatial configuration of target and non-targets. More generally, the TWIN model framework suggests that multisensory integration is a function of unimodal stimulus properties, like intensity, in the first stage and of cross-modal stimulus properties, like spatial disparity, in the second stage. PMID:17216154

  18. Effects of Dietary Protein and Fiber at Breakfast on Appetite, ad Libitum Energy Intake at Lunch, and Neural Responses to Visual Food Stimuli in Overweight Adults.

    PubMed

    Sayer, R Drew; Amankwaah, Akua F; Tamer, Gregory G; Chen, Ningning; Wright, Amy J; Tregellas, Jason R; Cornier, Marc-Andre; Kareken, David A; Talavage, Thomas M; McCrory, Megan A; Campbell, Wayne W

    2016-01-01

    Increasing either protein or fiber at mealtimes has relatively modest effects on ingestive behavior. Whether protein and fiber have additive or interactive effects on ingestive behavior is not known. Fifteen overweight adults (5 female, 10 male; BMI: 27.1 ± 0.2 kg/m²; aged 26 ± 1 year) consumed four breakfast meals in a randomized crossover manner (normal protein (12 g) + normal fiber (2 g), normal protein (12 g) + high fiber (8 g), high protein (25 g) + normal fiber (2 g), high protein (25 g) + high fiber (8 g)). The amount of protein and fiber consumed at breakfast did not influence postprandial appetite or ad libitum energy intake at lunch. In the fasting-state, visual food stimuli elicited significant responses in the bilateral insula and amygdala and left orbitofrontal cortex. Contrary to our hypotheses, postprandial right insula responses were lower after consuming normal protein vs. high protein breakfasts. Postprandial responses in other a priori brain regions were not significantly influenced by protein or fiber intake at breakfast. In conclusion, these data do not support increasing dietary protein and fiber at breakfast as effective strategies for modulating neural reward processing and acute ingestive behavior in overweight adults. PMID:26742068

  19. Effects of abstract versus concrete visual representations in an instructional simulation on students' declarative knowledge, learning transfer, and perceptions of the simulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mejia, William Ernesto

    2011-12-01

    Thanks to different multimedia authoring tools and specialized software that facilitate the design and development of computer-based simulations, science teachers and instructional media designers have a variety of simulations to support instructional delivery. However, there is a lack of research on how instructional designers and science teachers can select, design, and implement science simulations most effectively based on the simulations' visual attributes. One of the design principles that play an important part in the simulation design process is the visual representation of on-screen objects used to describe science concepts or principles. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of abstract and concrete visual representation of electricity concepts and principles in an instructional simulation on students' declarative knowledge, learning transfer, and perceptions of the simulation. The participants in this study were 39 elementary education pre-service teachers who were randomly assigned to either the concrete or the abstract treatment. The educational intervention was conducted over three 100-minute sessions. Since the sample violated the normality assumption, Mann-Whitney tests were conducted to verify whether the independent variable had significant effects on the three dependent variables. The data analysis found no statistically significant difference on learners' declarative knowledge, learning transfer, and perceptions about the simulation's attributes between those assigned to the concrete treatment and those assigned to the abstract treatment (p>.05). This finding did not favor one type of visual representation over the other.

  20. How to make a good animation: A grounded cognition model of how visual representation design affects the construction of abstract physics knowledge

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Zhongzhou; Gladding, Gary

    2014-06-01

    Visual representations play a critical role in teaching physics. However, since we do not have a satisfactory understanding of how visual perception impacts the construction of abstract knowledge, most visual representations used in instructions are either created based on existing conventions or designed according to the instructor's intuition, which leads to a significant variance in their effectiveness. In this paper we propose a cognitive mechanism based on grounded cognition, suggesting that visual perception affects understanding by activating "perceptual symbols": the basic cognitive unit used by the brain to construct a concept. A good visual representation activates perceptual symbols that are essential for the construction of the represented concept, whereas a bad representation does the opposite. As a proof of concept, we conducted a clinical experiment in which participants received three different versions of a multimedia tutorial teaching the integral expression of electric potential. The three versions were only different by the details of the visual representation design, only one of which contained perceptual features that activate perceptual symbols essential for constructing the idea of "accumulation." On a following post-test, participants receiving this version of tutorial significantly outperformed those who received the other two versions of tutorials designed to mimic conventional visual representations used in classrooms.

  1. Visual examination apparatus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Haines, R. F.; Fitzgerald, J. W.; Rositano, S. A. (Inventor)

    1976-01-01

    An automated visual examination apparatus for measuring visual sensitivity and mapping blind spot location including a projection system for displaying to a patient a series of visual stimuli. A response switch enables him to indicate his reaction to the stimuli, and a recording system responsive to both the visual stimuli per se and the patient's response. The recording system thereby provides a correlated permanent record of both stimuli and response from which a substantive and readily apparent visual evaluation can be made.

  2. Response inhibition failure to visual stimuli paired with a "single-type" stressor in PTSD patients: an fMRI pilot study.

    PubMed

    Brunetti, Marcella; Sepede, Gianna; Ferretti, Antonio; Mingoia, Gianluca; Romani, Gian Luca; Babiloni, Claudio

    2015-05-01

    Patients with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) tend to misinterpret innocuous stimuli as potential threats, possibly due to a conditioning provoked by traumatic episodes. Previous neuroimaging evidence has shown an abnormal activation of the amygdala and prefrontal cortex in PTSD patients during fear conditioning and extinction. Nevertheless, the effects of a single-type adverse stressor on that circuit remain poorly explored. We tested the hypothesis that a single-type adverse episode is able to affect the prefrontal cortex and amygdala response to conditioned stimuli. To test this hypothesis, fMRI recordings were performed in PTSD patients and trauma-exposed controls during the observation of neutral and negative paired or non-paired pictures with an adverse stimulus by means of a single association. Results showed that left amygdala activation during negative reinforced stimuli was correlated with the score of PTSD clinical scale across all subjects. Furthermore, in the traumatized non-PTSD group, the activation of the dorso-medial prefrontal cortex and bilateral amygdala was lower during the observation of the reinforced (CS(+)) versus non-reinforced pictures (CS(-)) in response to emotionally negative stimuli. This was not the case in the PTSD patients. These results suggest that in PTSD patients, a single-episode conditioning unveils the failure of an inhibitory mechanism moderating the activity of the prefrontal cortex and amygdala in response to adverse and neutral stimuli. PMID:25791360

  3. Beauty and the beholder: Highly individual taste for abstract, but not real-world images

    PubMed Central

    Vessel, Edward A.; Rubin, Nava

    2012-01-01

    How individual are visual preferences? For real-world scenes, there is high agreement in observer’s preference ratings. This could be driven by visual attributes of the images but also by non-visual associations, since those are common to most individuals. To investigate this, we developed a set of novel abstract, visually diverse images. At the individual observer level both abstract and real-world images yielded robust and consistent visual preferences, and yet abstract images yielded much lower across observer agreement in preferences than did real-world images. This suggests that visual preferences are typically driven by the semantic content of stimuli, and that shared semantic interpretations then lead to shared preferences. Further experiments showed that highly individual preferences can nevertheless emerge also for real-world scenes, in contexts which de-emphasize their semantic associations. PMID:20462319

  4. Metacognitive Performances of Hearing Students and of Students Who Are Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing on Two Types of Measures: Visual-Voiced and Visual-Visual Stimuli

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Al-Hilawani, Yasser A.

    2008-01-01

    A small sample of 20 hearing students and 20 students who are deaf and hard-of-hearing participated in this study, which compared their performances on two measures of metacognition. The first measure required participants to visually analyse real-life pictures and then to choose a response from four options (voiced or signed) indicating which was…

  5. Can Teachers Learn to Cope with Our Visual Society?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Oxford, Jacqulinn; Moore, David M.

    1979-01-01

    Outlines a concentrated in-service visual training program which incorporates (1) perceptual effects of visual stimuli, (2) synthetic and natural stimuli, (3) non-verbal stimuli, (4) pictorial communication, (5) visual persuasion, and (6) creative visualization. (Author/CMV)

  6. Crowding of biological motion stimuli.

    PubMed

    Ikeda, Hanako; Watanabe, Katsumi; Cavanagh, Patrick

    2013-01-01

    It is difficult to identify a target in the peripheral visual field when it is flanked by distractors. In the present study, we investigated this "crowding" effect for biological motion stimuli. Three walking biological motion stimuli were presented horizontally in the periphery with various distances between them, and observers reported the walking direction of the central figure. When the inter-walker distance was small, discriminating the direction became difficult. Moreover, the reported direction for the central target was not simply noisier, but reflected a degree of pooling of the three directions from the target and two flankers. However, when the two flanking distractors were scrambled walking biological motion stimuli, crowding was not seen. This result suggests that the crowding of biological motion stimuli occurs at a high-level of motion perception.

  7. Changed processing of visual sexual stimuli under GnRH-therapy – a single case study in pedophilia using eye tracking and fMRI

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Antiandrogen therapy (ADT) has been used for 30 years to treat pedophilic patients. The aim of the treatment is a reduction in sexual drive and, in consequence, a reduced risk of recidivism. Yet the therapeutic success of antiandrogens is uncertain especially regarding recidivism. Meta-analyses and reviews report only moderate and often mutually inconsistent effects. Case presentation Based on the case of a 47 year old exclusively pedophilic forensic inpatient, we examined the effectiveness of a new eye tracking method and a new functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI)-design in regard to the evaluation of ADT in pedophiles. We analyzed the potential of these methods in exploring the impact of ADT on automatic and controlled attentional processes in pedophiles. Eye tracking and fMRI measures were conducted before the initial ADT as well as four months after the onset of ADT. The patient simultaneously viewed an image of a child and an image of an adult while eye movements were measured. During the fMRI-measure the same stimuli were presented subliminally. Eye movements demonstrated that controlled attentional processes change under ADT, whereas automatic processes remained mostly unchanged. We assume that these results reflect either the increased ability of the patient to control his eye movements while viewing prepubertal stimuli or his better ability to manipulate his answer in a socially desirable manner. Unchanged automatic attentional processes could reflect the stable pedophilic preference of the patient. Using fMRI, the subliminal presentation of sexually relevant stimuli led to changed activation patterns under the influence of ADT in occipital and parietal brain regions, the hippocampus, and also in the orbitofrontal cortex. We suggest that even at an unconscious level ADT can lead to changed processing of sexually relevant stimuli, reflecting changes of cognitive and perceptive automatic processes. Conclusion We are convinced that our

  8. Abstract concept formation in African grey parrots (Psittacus erithacus) on the basis of a low number of cues.

    PubMed

    Suková, Karolína; Uchytilová, Michaela; Lindová, Jitka

    2013-06-01

    The formation of the concept of sameness is considered as a crucial cognitive ability which allows for other high cognitive functions in some species, e.g. humans. It is often operationalized as transfer of the matching rule to new stimuli in a matching-to-sample task. Animal species show great differences regarding the number of stimuli needed in training to be able to perform a full transfer to new stimuli. Not only apes appear to master this task, but also corvids among the birds were shown to reach a full transfer using only few stimuli. Using colour, shape and number stimuli in a matching-to-sample design, we tested four grey parrots for their ability to judge identity. Only a limited set of 8 stimulus cards were used in training. Pairs of "same" number stimuli were visually different thus allowing to be matched according to number of elements only. All four parrots successfully transferred to testing phases including testing with completely new stimuli and their performance did not drop with new stimuli. Including number stimuli invalidated some interpretations based on visual non-abstract processes and give evidence for formation of the concept of sameness.

  9. Binocular coordination in response to stereoscopic stimuli

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liversedge, Simon P.; Holliman, Nicolas S.; Blythe, Hazel I.

    2009-02-01

    Humans actively explore their visual environment by moving their eyes. Precise coordination of the eyes during visual scanning underlies the experience of a unified perceptual representation and is important for the perception of depth. We report data from three psychological experiments investigating human binocular coordination during visual processing of stereoscopic stimuli.In the first experiment participants were required to read sentences that contained a stereoscopically presented target word. Half of the word was presented exclusively to one eye and half exclusively to the other eye. Eye movements were recorded and showed that saccadic targeting was uninfluenced by the stereoscopic presentation, strongly suggesting that complementary retinal stimuli are perceived as a single, unified input prior to saccade initiation. In a second eye movement experiment we presented words stereoscopically to measure Panum's Fusional Area for linguistic stimuli. In the final experiment we compared binocular coordination during saccades between simple dot stimuli under 2D, stereoscopic 3D and real 3D viewing conditions. Results showed that depth appropriate vergence movements were made during saccades and fixations to real 3D stimuli, but only during fixations on stereoscopic 3D stimuli. 2D stimuli did not induce depth vergence movements. Together, these experiments indicate that stereoscopic visual stimuli are fused when they fall within Panum's Fusional Area, and that saccade metrics are computed on the basis of a unified percept. Also, there is sensitivity to non-foveal retinal disparity in real 3D stimuli, but not in stereoscopic 3D stimuli, and the system responsible for binocular coordination responds to this during saccades as well as fixations.

  10. Abstract Painting

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Henkes, Robert

    1978-01-01

    Abstract art provokes numerous interpretations, and as many misunderstandings. The adolescent reaction is no exception. The procedure described here can help the student to understand the abstract from at least one direction. (Author/RK)

  11. Abstract art and cortical motor activation: an EEG study

    PubMed Central

    Umilta', M. Alessandra; Berchio, Cristina; Sestito, Mariateresa; Freedberg, David; Gallese, Vittorio

    2012-01-01

    The role of the motor system in the perception of visual art remains to be better understood. Earlier studies on the visual perception of abstract art (from Gestalt theory, as in Arnheim, 1954 and 1988, to balance preference studies as in Locher and Stappers, 2002, and more recent work by Locher et al., 2007; Redies, 2007, and Taylor et al., 2011), neglected the question, while the field of neuroesthetics (Ramachandran and Hirstein, 1999; Zeki, 1999) mostly concentrated on figurative works. Much recent work has demonstrated the multimodality of vision, encompassing the activation of motor, somatosensory, and viscero-motor brain regions. The present study investigated whether the observation of high-resolution digitized static images of abstract paintings by Lucio Fontana is associated with specific cortical motor activation in the beholder's brain. Mu rhythm suppression was evoked by the observation of original art works but not by control stimuli (as in the case of graphically modified versions of these works). Most interestingly, previous visual exposure to the stimuli did not affect the mu rhythm suppression induced by their observation. The present results clearly show the involvement of the cortical motor system in the viewing of static abstract art works. PMID:23162456

  12. Responses to facial and non-facial stimuli presented tachistoscopically in either or both visual fields by patients with the Capgras delusion and paranoid schizophrenics.

    PubMed Central

    Ellis, H D; de Pauw, K W; Christodoulou, G N; Papageorgiou, L; Milne, A B; Joseph, A B

    1993-01-01

    An experiment was carried out designed primarily to test A B Joseph's suggestion that patients with Capgras delusion may have problems integrating information between the two cortical hemispheres; and at the same time it was meant to examine J Cutting's ideas linking schizophrenia in general, and the Capgras delusion in particular, to right hemisphere dysfunction. Three patients with the Capgras delusion and three matched controls diagnosed as paranoid schizophrenics were briefly presented pairs of line-drawn object and photographs of faces randomly in the left visual field, the right visual field or bilaterally. The results with objects revealed no particular pattern of performance for either group; but, when faces were shown, the controls revealed the usual left visual field/right hemisphere advantage while for the Capgras group this was reversed. The results are not consistent with a simple prediction from Joseph's hypothesis but they are in accord with Cutting's theory-though they also pose some problems for it, which are discussed. PMID:8437014

  13. Modulation of the face- and body-selective visual regions by the motion and emotion of point-light face and body stimuli.

    PubMed

    Atkinson, Anthony P; Vuong, Quoc C; Smithson, Hannah E

    2012-01-16

    Neural regions selective for facial or bodily form also respond to facial or bodily motion in highly form-degraded point-light displays. Yet it is unknown whether these face-selective and body-selective regions are sensitive to human motion regardless of stimulus type (faces and bodies) or to the specific motion-related cues characteristic of their proprietary stimulus categories. Using fMRI, we show that facial and bodily motions activate selectively those populations of neurons that code for the static structure of faces and bodies. Bodily (vs. facial) motion activated body-selective EBA bilaterally and right but not left FBA, irrespective of whether observers judged the emotion or color-change in point-light angry, happy and neutral stimuli. Facial (vs. bodily) motion activated face-selective right and left FFA, but only during emotion judgments for right FFA. Moreover, the strength of responses to point-light bodies vs. faces positively correlated with voxelwise selectivity for static bodies but not faces, whereas the strength of responses to point-light faces positively correlated with voxelwise selectivity for static faces but not bodies. Emotional content carried by point-light form-from-motion cues was sufficient to enhance the activity of several regions, including bilateral EBA and right FFA and FBA. However, although the strength of emotional modulation in right and left EBA by point-light body movements was related to the degree of voxelwise selectivity to static bodies but not static faces, there was no evidence that emotional modulation in fusiform cortex occurred in a similarly stimulus category-selective manner. This latter finding strongly constrains the claim that emotionally expressive movements modulate precisely those neuronal populations that code for the viewed stimulus category. PMID:21924368

  14. A Developmental Study of Visual and Auditory Short-Term Memory.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Siegel, Alexander W.; Allik, Judith P.

    Kindergarten, second-grade, fifth-grade, and college subjects were tested in a serial-position recall task under each of four conditions: Visual stimuli/visual recall cue, visual stimuli/auditory recall cue, auditory stimuli/visual recall cue, auditory stimuli/auditory recall cue. Visual stimuli were pictures of common animals and objects;…

  15. Strongly-motivated positive affects induce faster responses to local than global information of visual stimuli: an approach using large-size Navon letters.

    PubMed

    Noguchi, Yasuki; Tomoike, Kouta

    2016-01-12

    Recent studies argue that strongly-motivated positive emotions (e.g. desire) narrow a scope of attention. This argument is mainly based on an observation that, while humans normally respond faster to global than local information of a visual stimulus (global advantage), positive affects eliminated the global advantage by selectively speeding responses to local (but not global) information. In other words, narrowing of attentional scope was indirectly evidenced by the elimination of global advantage (the same speed of processing between global and local information). No study has directly shown that strongly-motivated positive affects induce faster responses to local than global information while excluding a bias for global information (global advantage) in a baseline (emotionally-neutral) condition. In the present study, we addressed this issue by eliminating the global advantage in a baseline (neutral) state. Induction of positive affects under this state resulted in faster responses to local than global information. Our results provided direct evidence that positive affects in high motivational intensity narrow a scope of attention.

  16. Visual examination apparatus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Haines, R. F.; Fitzgerald, J. W.; Rositano, S. A. (Inventor)

    1973-01-01

    An automated visual examination apparatus for measuring visual sensitivity and mapping blind spot location is described. The apparatus includes a projection system for displaying to a patient a series of visual stimuli, a response switch enabling him to indicate his reaction to the stimuli, and a recording system responsive to both the visual stimuli per se and the patient's response. The recording system provides a correlated permanent record of both stimuli and response from which a substantive and readily apparent visual evaluation can be made.

  17. Short term memory for tactile stimuli.

    PubMed

    Gallace, Alberto; Tan, Hong Z; Haggard, Patrick; Spence, Charles

    2008-01-23

    Research has shown that unreported information stored in rapidly decaying visual representations may be accessed more accurately using partial report than using full report procedures (e.g., [Sperling, G., 1960. The information available in brief visual presentations. Psychological Monographs, 74, 1-29.]). In the 3 experiments reported here, we investigated whether unreported information regarding the actual number of tactile stimuli presented in parallel across the body surface can be accessed using a partial report procedure. In Experiment 1, participants had to report the total number of stimuli in a tactile display composed of up to 6 stimuli presented across their body (numerosity task), or else to detect whether or not a tactile stimulus had previously been presented in a position indicated by a visual probe given at a variable delay after offset of a tactile display (i.e., partial report). The results showed that participants correctly reported up to 3 stimuli in the numerosity judgment task, but their performance was significantly better than chance when up to 5 stimuli were presented in the partial report task. This result shows that short-lasting tactile representations can be accessed using partial report procedures similar to those used previously in visual studies. Experiment 2 showed that the duration of these representations (or the time available to consciously access them) depends on the number of stimuli presented in the display (the greater the number of stimuli that are presented, the faster their representation decays). Finally, the results of a third experiment showed that the differences in performance between the numerosity judgment and partial report tasks could not be explained solely in terms of any difference in task difficulty. PMID:18083147

  18. Research Abstracts.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Plotnick, Eric

    2001-01-01

    Presents research abstracts from the ERIC Clearinghouse on Information and Technology. Topics include: classroom communication apprehension and distance education; outcomes of a distance-delivered science course; the NASA/Kennedy Space Center Virtual Science Mentor program; survey of traditional and distance learning higher education members;…

  19. Abstract Constructions.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pietropola, Anne

    1998-01-01

    Describes a lesson designed to culminate a year of eighth-grade art classes in which students explore elements of design and space by creating 3-D abstract constructions. Outlines the process of using foam board and markers to create various shapes and optical effects. (DSK)

  20. Visual Closure.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Groffman, Sidney

    An experimental test of visual closure based on an information-theory concept of perception was devised to test the ability to discriminate visual stimuli with reduced cues. The test is to be administered in a timed individual situation in which the subject is presented with sets of incomplete drawings of simple objects that he is required to name…

  1. Categorization of Multidimensional Stimuli by Pigeons

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Berg, Mark E.; Grace, Randolph C.

    2011-01-01

    Six pigeons responded in a visual category learning task in which the stimuli were dimensionally separable Gabor patches that varied in frequency and orientation. We compared performance in two conditions which varied in terms of whether accurate performance required that responding be controlled jointly by frequency and orientation, or…

  2. Learning of Aurally Received Verbal Material. Including Comparisons with Learning and Memory Under Visual Conditions of Reception as a Function of Meaningfulness, Abstractness or Similarity.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schulz, Rudolph W.

    The objectives of this study were to determine: (1) the variables that influence the learning of verbal material received by subjects via the aural modality, (2) how learning under conditions of aural reception compare with learning of the same materials under appropriately equivalent visual conditions, and (3) in what combinations learning is…

  3. Abstraction and art.

    PubMed Central

    Gortais, Bernard

    2003-01-01

    In a given social context, artistic creation comprises a set of processes, which relate to the activity of the artist and the activity of the spectator. Through these processes we see and understand that the world is vaster than it is said to be. Artistic processes are mediated experiences that open up the world. A successful work of art expresses a reality beyond actual reality: it suggests an unknown world using the means and the signs of the known world. Artistic practices incorporate the means of creation developed by science and technology and change forms as they change. Artists and the public follow different processes of abstraction at different levels, in the definition of the means of creation, of representation and of perception of a work of art. This paper examines how the processes of abstraction are used within the framework of the visual arts and abstract painting, which appeared during a period of growing importance for the processes of abstraction in science and technology, at the beginning of the twentieth century. The development of digital platforms and new man-machine interfaces allow multimedia creations. This is performed under the constraint of phases of multidisciplinary conceptualization using generic representation languages, which tend to abolish traditional frontiers between the arts: visual arts, drama, dance and music. PMID:12903659

  4. Recall and recognition hypermnesia for Socratic stimuli.

    PubMed

    Kazén, Miguel; Solís-Macías, Víctor M

    2016-01-01

    In two experiments, we investigate hypermnesia, net memory improvements with repeated testing of the same material after a single study trial. In the first experiment, we found hypermnesia across three trials for the recall of word solutions to Socratic stimuli (dictionary-like definitions of concepts) replicating Erdelyi, Buschke, and Finkelstein and, for the first time using these materials, for their recognition. In the second experiment, we had two "yes/no" recognition groups, a Socratic stimuli group presented with concrete and abstract verbal materials and a word-only control group. Using signal detection measures, we found hypermnesia for concrete Socratic stimuli-and stable performance for abstract stimuli across three recognition tests. The control group showed memory decrements across tests. We interpret these findings with the alternative retrieval pathways (ARP) hypothesis, contrasting it with alternative theories of hypermnesia, such as depth of processing, generation and retrieve-recognise. We conclude that recognition hypermnesia for concrete Socratic stimuli is a reliable phenomenon, which we found in two experiments involving both forced-choice and yes/no recognition procedures.

  5. Art expertise modulates the emotional response to modern art, especially abstract: an ERP investigation.

    PubMed

    Else, Jane E; Ellis, Jason; Orme, Elizabeth

    2015-01-01

    Art is one of life's great joys, whether it is beautiful, ugly, sublime or shocking. Aesthetic responses to visual art involve sensory, cognitive and visceral processes. Neuroimaging studies have yielded a wealth of information regarding aesthetic appreciation and beauty using visual art as stimuli, but few have considered the effect of expertise on visual and visceral responses. To study the time course of visual, cognitive and emotional processes in response to visual art we investigated the event-related potentials (ERPs) elicited whilst viewing and rating the visceral affect of three categories of visual art. Two groups, artists and non-artists viewed representational, abstract and indeterminate 20th century art. Early components, particularly the N1, related to attention and effort, and the P2, linked to higher order visual processing, was enhanced for artists when compared to non-artists. This effect was present for all types of art, but further enhanced for abstract art (AA), which was rated as having lowest visceral affect by the non-artists. The later, slow wave processes (500-1000 ms), associated with arousal and sustained attention, also show clear differences between the two groups in response to both type of art and visceral affect. AA increased arousal and sustained attention in artists, whilst it decreased in non-artists. These results suggest that aesthetic response to visual art is affected by both expertise and semantic content.

  6. Art expertise modulates the emotional response to modern art, especially abstract: an ERP investigation

    PubMed Central

    Else, Jane E.; Ellis, Jason; Orme, Elizabeth

    2015-01-01

    Art is one of life’s great joys, whether it is beautiful, ugly, sublime or shocking. Aesthetic responses to visual art involve sensory, cognitive and visceral processes. Neuroimaging studies have yielded a wealth of information regarding aesthetic appreciation and beauty using visual art as stimuli, but few have considered the effect of expertise on visual and visceral responses. To study the time course of visual, cognitive and emotional processes in response to visual art we investigated the event-related potentials (ERPs) elicited whilst viewing and rating the visceral affect of three categories of visual art. Two groups, artists and non-artists viewed representational, abstract and indeterminate 20th century art. Early components, particularly the N1, related to attention and effort, and the P2, linked to higher order visual processing, was enhanced for artists when compared to non-artists. This effect was present for all types of art, but further enhanced for abstract art (AA), which was rated as having lowest visceral affect by the non-artists. The later, slow wave processes (500–1000 ms), associated with arousal and sustained attention, also show clear differences between the two groups in response to both type of art and visceral affect. AA increased arousal and sustained attention in artists, whilst it decreased in non-artists. These results suggest that aesthetic response to visual art is affected by both expertise and semantic content. PMID:27242497

  7. Visual sensitivity tester

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Haines, R. F.; Fitzgerald, J. W.; Rositano, S. A.

    1972-01-01

    Testing device uses closed loop film cassettes to project programmed visual stimuli on screen which the observer views through a lens making the stimuli appear to be at optical infinity. Tester is useful for determining changes in glautomatous visual field sensitivity.

  8. Integration of visual and motion cues for simulator requirements and ride quality investigation. [computerized simulation of aircraft landing, visual perception of aircraft pilots

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Young, L. R.

    1975-01-01

    Preliminary tests and evaluation are presented of pilot performance during landing (flight paths) using computer generated images (video tapes). Psychophysiological factors affecting pilot visual perception were measured. A turning flight maneuver (pitch and roll) was specifically studied using a training device, and the scaling laws involved were determined. Also presented are medical studies (abstracts) on human response to gravity variations without visual cues, acceleration stimuli effects on the semicircular canals, and neurons affecting eye movements, and vestibular tests.

  9. Predator and heterospecific stimuli alter behaviour in cattle.

    PubMed

    Kluever, Bryan M; Howery, Larry D; Breck, Stewart W; Bergman, David L

    2009-05-01

    Wild and domestic ungulates modify their behaviour in the presence of olfactory and visual cues of predators but investigations have not exposed a domestic species to a series of cues representing various predators and other ungulate herbivores. We used wolf (Canis lupus), mountain lion (Puma concolor), and mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus) stimuli (olfactory and visual), and a control (no stimuli) to experimentally test for differences in behaviour of cattle (Bos taurus) raised in Arizona. We measured (1) vigilance, (2) foraging rates, (3) giving up density (GUD) of high quality foods and (4) time spent in high quality forage locations in response to location of stimuli treatments. In general, we found a consistent pattern in that wolf and deer treatments caused disparate results in all 4 response variables. Wolf stimuli significantly increased cattle vigilance and decreased cattle foraging rates; conversely, deer stimuli significantly increased cattle foraging rate and increased cattle use of high quality forage areas containing stimuli. Mountain lion stimuli did not significantly impact any of the 4 response variables. Our findings suggest that domestic herbivores react to predatory stimuli, can differentiate between stimuli representing two predatory species, and suggest that cattle may reduce antipredatory behaviour when near heterospecifics. PMID:19429201

  10. Gating of attention towards food stimuli in binge eating disorder.

    PubMed

    Schmitz, Florian; Naumann, Eva; Biehl, Stefanie; Svaldi, Jennifer

    2015-12-01

    Cognitive models of eating disorders propose that attentional biases for disorder-relevant stimuli contribute to eating disorder pathology. Empirical evidence of a contribution of attentional biases for binge eating disorder (BED) is still scarce. The aim of the present study was to assess attention engagement towards, and disengagement from, food stimuli in overweight females with BED (n = 25) and a group of overweight and obese women without BED (OW; n = 30). Participants completed a rapid serial visual presentation (RSVP) paradigm with food and neutral words as target stimuli. This task can be used to decompose an attentional bias for food stimuli into its stimulus engagement and stimulus disengagement components. Findings indicate that facilitated stimulus engagement for food stimuli over neutral stimuli was more pronounced in the BED group compared to the OW group. Conversely, there were no substantial disengagement effects in either group. Thereby, results support the idea that early attentional processes are biased in BED.

  11. Gating of attention towards food stimuli in binge eating disorder.

    PubMed

    Schmitz, Florian; Naumann, Eva; Biehl, Stefanie; Svaldi, Jennifer

    2015-12-01

    Cognitive models of eating disorders propose that attentional biases for disorder-relevant stimuli contribute to eating disorder pathology. Empirical evidence of a contribution of attentional biases for binge eating disorder (BED) is still scarce. The aim of the present study was to assess attention engagement towards, and disengagement from, food stimuli in overweight females with BED (n = 25) and a group of overweight and obese women without BED (OW; n = 30). Participants completed a rapid serial visual presentation (RSVP) paradigm with food and neutral words as target stimuli. This task can be used to decompose an attentional bias for food stimuli into its stimulus engagement and stimulus disengagement components. Findings indicate that facilitated stimulus engagement for food stimuli over neutral stimuli was more pronounced in the BED group compared to the OW group. Conversely, there were no substantial disengagement effects in either group. Thereby, results support the idea that early attentional processes are biased in BED. PMID:26212270

  12. Spatial and frequency differences of neuromagnetic activities in processing concrete and abstract words.

    PubMed

    Liu, Yinhong; Xiang, Jing; Wang, Yingying; Vannest, Jennifer J; Byars, Anna W; Rose, Douglas F

    2008-01-01

    This study investigated the neuromagnetic spatial and frequency differences between recognizing concrete and abstract words using a 275 channel whole head magnetoencephalography (MEG) system. The stimuli consisted of 100 concrete words and 100 abstract words which were presented visually and auditorily simultaneously. The data of 12 right-handed healthy subjects in six different frequency bands were analyzed with synthetic aperture magnetometry (SAM) which can identify the frequency-dependent volumetric distribution of the evoked magnetic field. Concrete and abstract words evoked a very similar neuromagnetic activation pattern in the primary visual and auditory cortices. However, concrete words evoked stronger synchronization in the right hemisphere and abstract words evoked stronger synchronization in the left hemisphere in 1-8 Hz. In addition, concrete words evoked more desynchronization in the left posterior temporal and parietal cortex; while abstract words evoked a clear synchronization in the left posterior temporal cortex and desynchronization in the left inferior frontal cortex in 70-120 Hz. Furthermore, concrete words evoked clear desynchronization in the left inferior frontal cortex while abstract words evoked strong synchronization in the left posterior temporal cortex in 200-300 Hz. These findings suggested that concrete words and abstract words are processed differently in the brain not only in anatomical substrates, but also in the frequency band of neural activation.

  13. Bimodal emotion congruency is critical to preverbal infants' abstract rule learning.

    PubMed

    Tsui, Angeline Sin Mei; Ma, Yuen Ki; Ho, Anna; Chow, Hiu Mei; Tseng, Chia-huei

    2016-05-01

    Extracting general rules from specific examples is important, as we must face the same challenge displayed in various formats. Previous studies have found that bimodal presentation of grammar-like rules (e.g. ABA) enhanced 5-month-olds' capacity to acquire a rule that infants failed to learn when the rule was presented with visual presentation of the shapes alone (circle-triangle-circle) or auditory presentation of the syllables (la-ba-la) alone. However, the mechanisms and constraints for this bimodal learning facilitation are still unknown. In this study, we used audio-visual relation congruency between bimodal stimulation to disentangle possible facilitation sources. We exposed 8- to 10-month-old infants to an AAB sequence consisting of visual faces with affective expressions and/or auditory voices conveying emotions. Our results showed that infants were able to distinguish the learned AAB rule from other novel rules under bimodal stimulation when the affects in audio and visual stimuli were congruently paired (Experiments 1A and 2A). Infants failed to acquire the same rule when audio-visual stimuli were incongruently matched (Experiment 2B) and when only the visual (Experiment 1B) or the audio (Experiment 1C) stimuli were presented. Our results highlight that bimodal facilitation in infant rule learning is not only dependent on better statistical probability and redundant sensory information, but also the relational congruency of audio-visual information. A video abstract of this article can be viewed at https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=KYTyjH1k9RQ. PMID:26280911

  14. Some Call It Stone: Teaching Abstract Sculpture

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Asher, Rikki

    2004-01-01

    Abstract visual art is not for everybody. Some people find it threatening, uncomfortable, and often, inaccessible. Understandably, this can result in a lack of attention paid to nonrepresentational works of art in the visual arts curriculum. This article describes an experiential, hands-on, field trip that sought to demystify abstract sculpture,…

  15. Subliminal presentation of emotionally negative vs positive primes increases the perceived beauty of target stimuli.

    PubMed

    Era, Vanessa; Candidi, Matteo; Aglioti, Salvatore Maria

    2015-11-01

    Emotions have a profound influence on aesthetic experiences. Studies using affective priming procedures demonstrate, for example, that inducing a conscious negative emotional state biases the perception of abstract stimuli towards the sublime (Eskine et al. Emotion 12:1071-1074, 2012. doi: 10.1037/a0027200). Moreover, subliminal happy facial expressions have a positive impact on the aesthetic evaluation of abstract art (Flexas et al. PLoS ONE 8:e80154, 2013). Little is known about how emotion influences aesthetic perception of non-abstract, representational stimuli, especially those that are particularly relevant for social behaviour, like human bodies. Here, we explore whether the subliminal presentation of emotionally charged visual primes modulates the explicit subjective aesthetic judgment of body images. Using a forward/backward masking procedure, we presented subliminally positive and negative, arousal-matched, emotional or neutral primes and measured their effect on the explicit evaluation of perceived beauty (high vs low) and emotion (positive vs negative) evoked by abstract and body images. We found that negative primes increased subjective aesthetic evaluations of target bodies or abstract images in comparison with positive primes. No influence of primes on the emotional dimension of the targets was found, thus ruling out an unspecific arousal effect and strengthening the link between emotional valence and aesthetic appreciation. More specifically, that subliminal negative primes increase beauty ratings compared to subliminal positive primes indicates a clear link between negative emotions and positive aesthetic evaluations and vice versa, suggesting a possible link between negative emotion and the experience of sublime in art. The study expands previous research by showing the effect of subliminal negative emotions on the subjective aesthetic evaluation not only of abstract but also of body images. PMID:26238406

  16. Subliminal presentation of emotionally negative vs positive primes increases the perceived beauty of target stimuli.

    PubMed

    Era, Vanessa; Candidi, Matteo; Aglioti, Salvatore Maria

    2015-11-01

    Emotions have a profound influence on aesthetic experiences. Studies using affective priming procedures demonstrate, for example, that inducing a conscious negative emotional state biases the perception of abstract stimuli towards the sublime (Eskine et al. Emotion 12:1071-1074, 2012. doi: 10.1037/a0027200). Moreover, subliminal happy facial expressions have a positive impact on the aesthetic evaluation of abstract art (Flexas et al. PLoS ONE 8:e80154, 2013). Little is known about how emotion influences aesthetic perception of non-abstract, representational stimuli, especially those that are particularly relevant for social behaviour, like human bodies. Here, we explore whether the subliminal presentation of emotionally charged visual primes modulates the explicit subjective aesthetic judgment of body images. Using a forward/backward masking procedure, we presented subliminally positive and negative, arousal-matched, emotional or neutral primes and measured their effect on the explicit evaluation of perceived beauty (high vs low) and emotion (positive vs negative) evoked by abstract and body images. We found that negative primes increased subjective aesthetic evaluations of target bodies or abstract images in comparison with positive primes. No influence of primes on the emotional dimension of the targets was found, thus ruling out an unspecific arousal effect and strengthening the link between emotional valence and aesthetic appreciation. More specifically, that subliminal negative primes increase beauty ratings compared to subliminal positive primes indicates a clear link between negative emotions and positive aesthetic evaluations and vice versa, suggesting a possible link between negative emotion and the experience of sublime in art. The study expands previous research by showing the effect of subliminal negative emotions on the subjective aesthetic evaluation not only of abstract but also of body images.

  17. Abstract representations of associated emotions in the human brain.

    PubMed

    Kim, Junsuk; Schultz, Johannes; Rohe, Tim; Wallraven, Christian; Lee, Seong-Whan; Bülthoff, Heinrich H

    2015-04-01

    Emotions can be aroused by various kinds of stimulus modalities. Recent neuroimaging studies indicate that several brain regions represent emotions at an abstract level, i.e., independently from the sensory cues from which they are perceived (e.g., face, body, or voice stimuli). If emotions are indeed represented at such an abstract level, then these abstract representations should also be activated by the memory of an emotional event. We tested this hypothesis by asking human participants to learn associations between emotional stimuli (videos of faces or bodies) and non-emotional stimuli (fractals). After successful learning, fMRI signals were recorded during the presentations of emotional stimuli and emotion-associated fractals. We tested whether emotions could be decoded from fMRI signals evoked by the fractal stimuli using a classifier trained on the responses to the emotional stimuli (and vice versa). This was implemented as a whole-brain searchlight, multivoxel activation pattern analysis, which revealed successful emotion decoding in four brain regions: posterior cingulate cortex (PCC), precuneus, MPFC, and angular gyrus. The same analysis run only on responses to emotional stimuli revealed clusters in PCC, precuneus, and MPFC. Multidimensional scaling analysis of the activation patterns revealed clear clustering of responses by emotion across stimulus types. Our results suggest that PCC, precuneus, and MPFC contain representations of emotions that can be evoked by stimuli that carry emotional information themselves or by stimuli that evoke memories of emotional stimuli, while angular gyrus is more likely to take part in emotional memory retrieval.

  18. ERGONOMICS ABSTRACTS 48347-48982.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ministry of Technology, London (England). Warren Spring Lab.

    IN THIS COLLECTION OF ERGONOMICS ABSTRACTS AND ANNOTATIONS THE FOLLOWING AREAS OF CONCERN ARE REPRESENTED--GENERAL REFERENCES, METHODS, FACILITIES, AND EQUIPMENT RELATING TO ERGONOMICS, SYSTEMS OF MAN AND MACHINES, VISUAL, AUDITORY, AND OTHER SENSORY INPUTS AND PROCESSES (INCLUDING SPEECH AND INTELLIGIBILITY), INPUT CHANNELS, BODY MEASUREMENTS,…

  19. Topological Structure in Visual Perception.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chen, L.

    1982-01-01

    Three experiments on tachistoscopic perception of visual stimuli demonstrate that the visual system is sensitive to global topological properties. The results indicate that extraction of global topological properties is a basic factor in perceptual organization. (Author)

  20. Accommodation for flickering stimuli.

    PubMed

    Owens, D A; Wolfe, J M

    1985-01-01

    A laser optometer was used to measure accommodative responses of three observers for sinusoidal gratings presented in Maxwellian view at optical distances ranging from 0 to 4 diopters. Contrast of the stimuli was modulated spatially at 1.0, 4.2 and 6.5 cycles deg.-1 (cpd), and temporally at six frequencies ranging from 3.0 to 40 Hz. Accommodation was consistently more accurate for the 4.2 cpd than for either the 1.0 or 6.5 cpd gratings. Furthermore, accommodative responsiveness for the 4.2 cpd was not affected by temporal modulation, while that for the other spatial frequencies improved monotonically as a function of temporal frequency. These results reinforce earlier reports that accommodation is most responsive for contrast of intermediate spatial frequencies and they indicate that stimulus flicker generally degrades accommodation for spatial contrast.

  1. Psychophysical definition of S-cone stimuli in the macaque

    PubMed Central

    Hall, Nathan; Colby, Carol

    2013-01-01

    We used the perceptual reports of nonhuman primates to perform psychophysical calibrations of S-cone isolating stimuli. S-cone stimuli were calibrated separately at several spatial locations for each monkey. To do this we exploited the effect of transient tritanopia, which causes a selective decrease of sensitivity in the observer's S-cone channel. At the start of each transient tritanopia trial monkeys were visually adapted to a bright yellow background. This type of adaptation is known to induce transient tritanopia. Calibrated S-cone isolating stimuli were determined by finding a near S-cone stimulus whose detection threshold was maximally elevated during transient tritanopia. At the start of each control trial, monkeys were adapted to a bright white background. In these trials, monkeys' detection thresholds for near S-cone stimuli were unchanged. We found that S-cone isolating stimuli could be determined at most locations tested in each monkey. Calibrated S-cone stimuli were particular to both spatial location and animal. To understand the visual system as a whole in vivo requires physiological methods not possible in human subjects. The present results open the door to novel behavioral and physiological experiments by showing that S-cone isolating stimuli can be calibrated in monkeys. PMID:23412341

  2. Local contextual processing of abstract and meaningful real-life images in professional athletes.

    PubMed

    Fogelson, Noa; Fernandez-Del-Olmo, Miguel; Acero, Rafael Martín

    2012-05-01

    We investigated the effect of abstract versus real-life meaningful images from sports on local contextual processing in two groups of professional athletes. Local context was defined as the occurrence of a short predictive series of stimuli occurring before delivery of a target event. EEG was recorded in 10 professional basketball players and 9 professional athletes of individual sports during three sessions. In each session, a different set of visual stimuli were presented: triangles facing left, up, right, or down; four images of a basketball player throwing a ball; four images of a baseball player pitching a baseball. Stimuli consisted of 15 % targets and 85 % of equal numbers of three types of standards. Recording blocks consisted of targets preceded by randomized sequences of standards and by sequences including a predictive sequence signaling the occurrence of a subsequent target event. Subjects pressed a button in response to targets. In all three sessions, reaction times and peak P3b latencies were shorter for predicted targets compared with random targets, the last most informative stimulus of the predictive sequence induced a robust P3b, and N2 amplitude was larger for random targets compared with predicted targets. P3b and N2 peak amplitudes were larger in the professional basketball group in comparison with professional athletes of individual sports, across the three sessions. The findings of this study suggest that local contextual information is processed similarly for abstract and for meaningful images and that professional basketball players seem to allocate more attentional resources in the processing of these visual stimuli.

  3. How do expert soccer players encode visual information to make decisions in simulated game situations?

    PubMed

    Poplu, Gérald; Ripoll, Hubert; Mavromatis, Sébastien; Baratgin, Jean

    2008-09-01

    The aim of this study was to determine what visual information expert soccer players encode when they are asked to make a decision. We used a repetition-priming paradigm to test the hypothesis that experts encode a soccer pattern's structure independently of the players' physical characteristics (i.e., posture and morphology). The participants were given either realistic (digital photos) or abstract (three-dimensional schematic representations) soccer game patterns. The results showed that the experts benefited from priming effects regardless of how abstract the stimuli were. This suggests that an abstract representation of a realistic pattern (i.e., one that does not include visual information related to the players'physical characteristics) is sufficient to activate experts'specific knowledge during decision making. These results seem to show that expert soccer players encode and store abstract representations of visual patterns in memory.

  4. Training Visual Attention

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mulholland, Thomas B.

    1974-01-01

    The effects of brain waves and alpha rhythms on attentiveness to visual stimuli are discussed, and preliminary research findings and research needs are considered in connection with measuring and training for attention. (LH)

  5. Orientation Tuning Depends on Spatial Frequency in Mouse Visual Cortex

    PubMed Central

    Yuste, Rafael

    2016-01-01

    Abstract The response properties of neurons to sensory stimuli have been used to identify their receptive fields and to functionally map sensory systems. In primary visual cortex, most neurons are selective to a particular orientation and spatial frequency of the visual stimulus. Using two-photon calcium imaging of neuronal populations from the primary visual cortex of mice, we have characterized the response properties of neurons to various orientations and spatial frequencies. Surprisingly, we found that the orientation selectivity of neurons actually depends on the spatial frequency of the stimulus. This dependence can be easily explained if one assumed spatially asymmetric Gabor-type receptive fields. We propose that receptive fields of neurons in layer 2/3 of visual cortex are indeed spatially asymmetric, and that this asymmetry could be used effectively by the visual system to encode natural scenes. PMID:27699210

  6. Orientation Tuning Depends on Spatial Frequency in Mouse Visual Cortex

    PubMed Central

    Yuste, Rafael

    2016-01-01

    Abstract The response properties of neurons to sensory stimuli have been used to identify their receptive fields and to functionally map sensory systems. In primary visual cortex, most neurons are selective to a particular orientation and spatial frequency of the visual stimulus. Using two-photon calcium imaging of neuronal populations from the primary visual cortex of mice, we have characterized the response properties of neurons to various orientations and spatial frequencies. Surprisingly, we found that the orientation selectivity of neurons actually depends on the spatial frequency of the stimulus. This dependence can be easily explained if one assumed spatially asymmetric Gabor-type receptive fields. We propose that receptive fields of neurons in layer 2/3 of visual cortex are indeed spatially asymmetric, and that this asymmetry could be used effectively by the visual system to encode natural scenes.

  7. Distributed Patterns of Event-Related Potentials Predict Subsequent Ratings of Abstract Stimulus Attributes

    PubMed Central

    Bode, Stefan; Bennett, Daniel; Stahl, Jutta; Murawski, Carsten

    2014-01-01

    Exposure to pleasant and rewarding visual stimuli can bias people's choices towards either immediate or delayed gratification. We hypothesised that this phenomenon might be based on carry-over effects from a fast, unconscious assessment of the abstract ‘time reference’ of a stimuli, i.e. how the stimulus relates to one's personal understanding and connotation of time. Here we investigated whether participants' post-experiment ratings of task-irrelevant, positive background visual stimuli for the dimensions ‘arousal’ (used as a control condition) and ‘time reference’ were related to differences in single-channel event-related potentials (ERPs) and whether they could be predicted from spatio-temporal patterns of ERPs. Participants performed a demanding foreground choice-reaction task while on each trial one task-irrelevant image (depicting objects, people and scenes) was presented in the background. Conventional ERP analyses as well as multivariate support vector regression (SVR) analyses were conducted to predict participants' subsequent ratings. We found that only SVR allowed both ‘arousal’ and ‘time reference’ ratings to be predicted during the first 200 ms post-stimulus. This demonstrates an early, automatic semantic stimulus analysis, which might be related to the high relevance of ‘time reference’ to everyday decision-making and preference formation. PMID:25271850

  8. The influence of motion quality on responses towards video playback stimuli

    PubMed Central

    Ware, Emma; Saunders, Daniel R.; Troje, Nikolaus F.

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Visual motion, a critical cue in communication, can be manipulated and studied using video playback methods. A primary concern for the video playback researcher is the degree to which objects presented on video appear natural to the non-human subject. Here we argue that the quality of motion cues on video, as determined by the video's image presentation rate (IPR), are of particular importance in determining a subject's social response behaviour. We present an experiment testing the effect of variations in IPR on pigeon (Columbia livia) response behaviour towards video images of courting opposite sex partners. Male and female pigeons were presented with three video playback stimuli, each containing a different social partner. Each stimulus was then modified to appear at one of three IPRs: 15, 30 or 60 progressive (p) frames per second. The results showed that courtship behaviour became significantly longer in duration as IPR increased. This finding implies that the IPR significantly affects the perceived quality of motion cues impacting social behaviour. In males we found that the duration of courtship also depended on the social partner viewed and that this effect interacted with the effects of IPR on behaviour. Specifically, the effect of social partner reached statistical significance only when the stimuli were displayed at 60 p, demonstrating the potential for erroneous results when insufficient IPRs are used. In addition to demonstrating the importance of IPR in video playback experiments, these findings help to highlight and describe the role of visual motion processing in communication behaviour. PMID:25964659

  9. Effects of auditory stimuli in the horizontal plane on audiovisual integration: an event-related potential study.

    PubMed

    Yang, Weiping; Li, Qi; Ochi, Tatsuya; Yang, Jingjing; Gao, Yulin; Tang, Xiaoyu; Takahashi, Satoshi; Wu, Jinglong

    2013-01-01

    This article aims to investigate whether auditory stimuli in the horizontal plane, particularly originating from behind the participant, affect audiovisual integration by using behavioral and event-related potential (ERP) measurements. In this study, visual stimuli were presented directly in front of the participants, auditory stimuli were presented at one location in an equidistant horizontal plane at the front (0°, the fixation point), right (90°), back (180°), or left (270°) of the participants, and audiovisual stimuli that include both visual stimuli and auditory stimuli originating from one of the four locations were simultaneously presented. These stimuli were presented randomly with equal probability; during this time, participants were asked to attend to the visual stimulus and respond promptly only to visual target stimuli (a unimodal visual target stimulus and the visual target of the audiovisual stimulus). A significant facilitation of reaction times and hit rates was obtained following audiovisual stimulation, irrespective of whether the auditory stimuli were presented in the front or back of the participant. However, no significant interactions were found between visual stimuli and auditory stimuli from the right or left. Two main ERP components related to audiovisual integration were found: first, auditory stimuli from the front location produced an ERP reaction over the right temporal area and right occipital area at approximately 160-200 milliseconds; second, auditory stimuli from the back produced a reaction over the parietal and occipital areas at approximately 360-400 milliseconds. Our results confirmed that audiovisual integration was also elicited, even though auditory stimuli were presented behind the participant, but no integration occurred when auditory stimuli were presented in the right or left spaces, suggesting that the human brain might be particularly sensitive to information received from behind than both sides.

  10. Hierarchical abstract semantic model for image classification

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ye, Zhipeng; Liu, Peng; Zhao, Wei; Tang, Xianglong

    2015-09-01

    Semantic gap limits the performance of bag-of-visual-words. To deal with this problem, a hierarchical abstract semantics method that builds abstract semantic layers, generates semantic visual vocabularies, measures semantic gap, and constructs classifiers using the Adaboost strategy is proposed. First, abstract semantic layers are proposed to narrow the semantic gap between visual features and their interpretation. Then semantic visual words are extracted as features to train semantic classifiers. One popular form of measurement is used to quantify the semantic gap. The Adaboost training strategy is used to combine weak classifiers into strong ones to further improve performance. For a testing image, the category is estimated layer-by-layer. Corresponding abstract hierarchical structures for popular datasets, including Caltech-101 and MSRC, are proposed for evaluation. The experimental results show that the proposed method is capable of narrowing semantic gaps effectively and performs better than other categorization methods.

  11. Piaget on Abstraction.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Moessinger, Pierre; Poulin-Dubois, Diane

    1981-01-01

    Reviews and discusses Piaget's recent work on abstract reasoning. Piaget's distinction between empirical and reflective abstraction is presented; his hypotheses are considered to be metaphorical. (Author/DB)

  12. How Does the Hippocampal Formation Mediate Memory for Stimuli Processed by the Magnocellular and Parvocellular Visual Pathways? Evidence from the Comparison of Schizophrenia and Amnestic Mild Cognitive Impairment (aMCI)

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Keri, Szabolcs; Szamosi, Andras; Benedek, Gyorgy; Kelemen, Oguz

    2012-01-01

    Paired associates learning is impaired in both schizophrenia and amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI), which may reflect hippocampal pathology. In addition, schizophrenia is characterized by the dysfunction of the retino-geniculo-striatal magnocellular (M) visual pathway. The purpose of this study was to investigate the interaction between…

  13. Visual field asymmetries in visual evoked responses

    PubMed Central

    Hagler, Donald J.

    2014-01-01

    Behavioral responses to visual stimuli exhibit visual field asymmetries, but cortical folding and the close proximity of visual cortical areas make electrophysiological comparisons between different stimulus locations problematic. Retinotopy-constrained source estimation (RCSE) uses distributed dipole models simultaneously constrained by multiple stimulus locations to provide separation between individual visual areas that is not possible with conventional source estimation methods. Magnetoencephalography and RCSE were used to estimate time courses of activity in V1, V2, V3, and V3A. Responses to left and right hemifield stimuli were not significantly different. Peak latencies for peripheral stimuli were significantly shorter than those for perifoveal stimuli in V1, V2, and V3A, likely related to the greater proportion of magnocellular input to V1 in the periphery. Consistent with previous results, sensor magnitudes for lower field stimuli were about twice as large as for upper field, which is only partially explained by the proximity to sensors for lower field cortical sources in V1, V2, and V3. V3A exhibited both latency and amplitude differences for upper and lower field responses. There were no differences for V3, consistent with previous suggestions that dorsal and ventral V3 are two halves of a single visual area, rather than distinct areas V3 and VP. PMID:25527151

  14. Visual masking and visual integration across saccadic eye movements.

    PubMed

    Irwin, D E; Brown, J S; Sun, J S

    1988-09-01

    in the Davidson et al. (1973) experiments, we conclude that their findings can be explained solely in retinotopic terms and provide no convincing evidence for spatiotopic visual persistence. But the exposure parameters that Davidson et al. (1973) and we used were biased in favor of retinotopic, rather than spatiotopic, coding: The stimuli were presented very briefly just before a saccadic eye movement, and subjects are poor at spatially localizing stimuli under these conditions. Thus, in Experiment 4 we presented the letter array about 200 ms before the saccade; then, subjects reported that the letter with the same spatial coordinates as the bar appeared under it.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 400 WORDS)

  15. [Stimuli-sensitive polymer systems].

    PubMed

    Le Cerf, D

    2014-11-01

    The polymers can be found in different forms in solution (particles, capsules, pseudo-micelles, hydrogels…) or on surface with important prospects in many field applications. These polymer systems are particularly very good candidates to entrap, transport and deliver an active substance in biomedical applications however with many limitations on control of release of a given target. The stimuli-sensitive polymers, also called smart or environmentally sensitive polymers, present physical or chemical changes under the action of small variations of an external stimulus. This signal acts as a stimulus which causes the change of conformation and/or solvation of the macromolecular chains by modifying their various interactions. The stimuli are classified into two broad categories: physical or external stimuli: temperature, mechanical stress, light, magnetic and electric fields; chemical and biochemical or internal stimuli: pH, ionic strength, chemical molecule (glucose, redox) or biochemical (enzymes, antigens…). The use of stimuli-sensitive pathway is widely used in the literature to enhance or trigger the release of an active compound. In this paper, we present the different stimuli addressing the theoretical aspects, polymers corresponding to these stimuli. Some examples illustrate these systems for the controlled release of active compounds.

  16. Numerosity judgments for tactile stimuli distributed over the body surface.

    PubMed

    Gallace, Alberto; Tan, Hong Z; Spence, Charles

    2006-01-01

    A large body of research now supports the claim that two different and dissociable processes are involved in making numerosity judgments regarding visual stimuli: subitising (fast and nearly errorless) for up to 4 stimuli, and counting (slow and error-prone) when more than 4 stimuli are presented. We studied tactile numerosity judgments for combinations of 1-7 vibrotactile stimuli presented simultaneously over the body surface. In experiment 1, the stimuli were presented once, while in experiment 2 conditions of single presentation and repeated presentation of the stimulus were compared. Neither experiment provided any evidence for a discontinuity in the slope of either the RT or error data suggesting that subitisation does not occur for tactile stimuli. By systematically varying the intensity of the vibrotactile stimuli in experiment 3, we were able to demonstrate that participants were not simply using the 'global intensity' of the whole tactile display to make their tactile numerosity judgments, but were, instead, using information concerning the number of tactors activated. The results of the three experiments reported here are discussed in relation to current theories of counting and subitising, and potential implications for the design of tactile user interfaces are highlighted. PMID:16583769

  17. Transitive responding in hooded crows requires linearly ordered stimuli.

    PubMed Central

    Lazareva, Olga F; Smirnova, Anna A; Bagozkaja, Maria S; Zorina, Zoya A; Rayevsky, Vladimir V; Wasserman, Edward A

    2004-01-01

    Eight crows were taught to discriminate overlapping pairs of visual stimuli (A+ B-, B+ C-, C+ D-, and D+ E-). For 4 birds, the stimuli were colored cards with a circle of the same color on the reverse side whose diameter decreased from A to E (ordered feedback group). These circles were made available for comparison to potentially help the crows order the stimuli along a physical dimension. For the other 4 birds, the circles corresponding to the colored cards had the same diameter (constant feedback group). In later testing, a novel choice pair (BD) was presented. Reinforcement history involving stimuli B and D was controlled so that the reinforcement/nonreinforcement ratios for the latter would be greater than for the former. If, during the BD test, the crows chose between stimuli according to these reinforcement/nonreinforcement ratios, then they should prefer D; if they chose according to the diameter of the feedback stimuli, then they should prefer B. In the ordered feedback group, the crows strongly preferred B over D; in the constant feedback group, the crows' choice did not differ significantly from chance. These results, plus simulations using associative models, suggest that the orderability of the postchoice feedback stimuli is important for crows' transitive responding. PMID:15484868

  18. Attentional orienting towards smoking-related stimuli.

    PubMed

    Hogarth, L C; Mogg, K; Bradley, B P; Duka, T; Dickinson, A

    2003-03-01

    According to incentive salience theory, conditioned stimuli (CS+) associated with drug reinforcement acquire the capacity to elicit a conditioned attentional orienting response, which controls drug-seeking and drug-taking behaviour. We sought evidence for this proposal by measuring visual attentional orienting towards smoking pictures presented briefly in the periphery of the visual field, versus control pictures likewise presented, in smokers versus non-smokers. In each trial, smokers and non-smokers responded manually to a dot probe stimulus that appeared in a location previously occupied by either a smoking picture or a control picture. Attentional bias scores were calculated by subtracting the median reaction time (RT) in the former condition from the median RT in the latter condition. In two experiments, light-smokers (smokers of fewer than 20 cigarettes/day) produced a mean bias score that was significantly greater than that of heavy-smokers (smokers of 20 or more cigarettes/day) and non-smokers. In addition, when smokers from the two experiments were pooled, a significant quadratic relationship was found between cigarettes/day and the attentional bias for the smoking stimuli. These findings are consistent with incentive salience theories and dual-process theories of addiction.

  19. Prism adaptation contrasts perceptual habituation for repetitive somatosensory stimuli.

    PubMed

    Torta, D M; Tatu, M K; Cotroneo, D; Alamia, A; Folegatti, A; Trojan, J

    2016-03-01

    Prism adaptation (PA) is a non-invasive procedure that requires performing a visuo-motor pointing task while wearing prism goggles inducing a visual displacement of the pointed target. This procedure involves a reorganization of sensorimotor coordination, and induces long-lasting effects on numerous higher-order cognitive functions in healthy volunteers and neglect patients. Prismatic displacement (PD) of the visual field can be induced when prisms are worn but no sensorimotor task is required. In this case, it is unlikely that any subsequent reorganization takes place. The effects of PD are short-lived in the sense that they last as long as prisms are worn. In this study we aimed, to the best of our knowledge for the first time, at investigating whether PA and PD induce changes in the perception of intensity of nociceptive and non- nociceptive somatosensory stimuli. We induced, in healthy volunteers, PD (experiment 1), or PA (experiment 2) and asked participants to rate the intensity of the stimuli applied to the hand undergoing the visuo-proprioceptive conflict (experiment 1) or adaptation (experiment 2). Our results indicate that: 1) the visuo-proprioceptive conflict induced by PD does not reduce the perceived intensity of the stimuli, 2) PA prevents perceptual habituation for both nociceptive and non-nociceptive somatosensory stimuli. Moreover, to investigate the possible underlying mechanisms of the effects of PA we conducted a third experiment in which stimuli were applied both at the adapted and the non-adapted hand. In line with the results of experiment 2, we found that perceptual habituation was prevented for stimuli applied onto the adapted hand. Moreover, we observed the same finding for stimuli applied onto the non-adapted hand. This result suggests that the detention of habituation is not merely driven by changes in spatial attention allocation. Taken together, these data indicate that prisms can affect the perceived intensity of somatosensory stimuli

  20. Stellar Presentations (Abstract)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Young, D.

    2015-12-01

    (Abstract only) The AAVSO is in the process of expanding its education, outreach and speakers bureau program. powerpoint presentations prepared for specific target audiences such as AAVSO members, educators, students, the general public, and Science Olympiad teams, coaches, event supervisors, and state directors will be available online for members to use. The presentations range from specific and general content relating to stellar evolution and variable stars to specific activities for a workshop environment. A presentation—even with a general topic—that works for high school students will not work for educators, Science Olympiad teams, or the general public. Each audience is unique and requires a different approach. The current environment necessitates presentations that are captivating for a younger generation that is embedded in a highly visual and sound-bite world of social media, twitter and U-Tube, and mobile devices. For educators, presentations and workshops for themselves and their students must support the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), the Common Core Content Standards, and the Science Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) initiative. Current best practices for developing relevant and engaging powerpoint presentations to deliver information to a variety of targeted audiences will be presented along with several examples.

  1. Headphone localization of speech stimuli

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Begault, Durand R.; Wenzel, Elizabeth M.

    1991-01-01

    Recently, three dimensional acoustic display systems have been developed that synthesize virtual sound sources over headphones based on filtering by Head-Related Transfer Functions (HRTFs), the direction-dependent spectral changes caused primarily by the outer ears. Here, 11 inexperienced subjects judged the apparent spatial location of headphone-presented speech stimuli filtered with non-individualized HRTFs. About half of the subjects 'pulled' their judgements toward either the median or the lateral-vertical planes, and estimates were almost always elevated. Individual differences were pronounced for the distance judgements; 15 to 46 percent of stimuli were heard inside the head with the shortest estimates near the median plane. The results infer that most listeners can obtain useful azimuth information from speech stimuli filtered by nonindividualized RTFs. Measurements of localization error and reversal rates are comparable with a previous study that used broadband noise stimuli.

  2. Infant Attention to Dynamic Audiovisual Stimuli: Look Duration from 3 to 9 Months of Age

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Reynolds, Greg D.; Zhang, Dantong; Guy, Maggie W.

    2013-01-01

    The goal of this study was to examine developmental change in visual attention to dynamic visual and audiovisual stimuli in 3-, 6-, and 9-month-old infants. Infant look duration was measured during exposure to dynamic geometric patterns and Sesame Street video clips under three different stimulus modality conditions: unimodal visual, synchronous…

  3. Multidimensional Visual Statistical Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Turk-Browne, Nicholas B.; Isola, Phillip J.; Scholl, Brian J.; Treat, Teresa A.

    2008-01-01

    Recent studies of visual statistical learning (VSL) have demonstrated that statistical regularities in sequences of visual stimuli can be automatically extracted, even without intent or awareness. Despite much work on this topic, however, several fundamental questions remain about the nature of VSL. In particular, previous experiments have not…

  4. The Impact of Semantic Relevance and Heterogeneity of Pictorial Stimuli on Individual Brainstorming: An Extension of the SIAM Model

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Guo, Jing; McLeod, Poppy Lauretta

    2014-01-01

    Drawing upon the Search for Ideas in Associative Memory (SIAM) model as the theoretical framework, the impact of heterogeneity and topic relevance of visual stimuli on ideation performance was examined. Results from a laboratory experiment showed that visual stimuli increased productivity and diversity of idea generation, that relevance to the…

  5. Abstract representations of associated emotions in the human brain.

    PubMed

    Kim, Junsuk; Schultz, Johannes; Rohe, Tim; Wallraven, Christian; Lee, Seong-Whan; Bülthoff, Heinrich H

    2015-04-01

    Emotions can be aroused by various kinds of stimulus modalities. Recent neuroimaging studies indicate that several brain regions represent emotions at an abstract level, i.e., independently from the sensory cues from which they are perceived (e.g., face, body, or voice stimuli). If emotions are indeed represented at such an abstract level, then these abstract representations should also be activated by the memory of an emotional event. We tested this hypothesis by asking human participants to learn associations between emotional stimuli (videos of faces or bodies) and non-emotional stimuli (fractals). After successful learning, fMRI signals were recorded during the presentations of emotional stimuli and emotion-associated fractals. We tested whether emotions could be decoded from fMRI signals evoked by the fractal stimuli using a classifier trained on the responses to the emotional stimuli (and vice versa). This was implemented as a whole-brain searchlight, multivoxel activation pattern analysis, which revealed successful emotion decoding in four brain regions: posterior cingulate cortex (PCC), precuneus, MPFC, and angular gyrus. The same analysis run only on responses to emotional stimuli revealed clusters in PCC, precuneus, and MPFC. Multidimensional scaling analysis of the activation patterns revealed clear clustering of responses by emotion across stimulus types. Our results suggest that PCC, precuneus, and MPFC contain representations of emotions that can be evoked by stimuli that carry emotional information themselves or by stimuli that evoke memories of emotional stimuli, while angular gyrus is more likely to take part in emotional memory retrieval. PMID:25855179

  6. Functional Hemispheric Differences for the Categorization of Global and Local Information in Naturalistic Stimuli

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hubner, Ronald; Studer, Tobias

    2009-01-01

    Up to now functional hemispheric asymmetries for global/local processing have mainly been investigated with hierarchical letters as stimuli. In the present study, three experiments were conducted to examine whether corresponding visual-field (VF) effects can also be obtained with more naturalistic stimuli. To this end, images of animals with a…

  7. An Information-Processing Analysis of Children's Accuracy in Predicting the Appearance of Rotated Stimuli.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rosser, Rosemary A.; And Others

    1984-01-01

    The ability of 40 children four and five years of age to discriminate reflections and rotations of visual stimuli was examined in a kinetic imagery task. Results revealed that prediction accuracy was associated with the existence of orientation markers on the stimuli, as well as age, sex, type of discrimination, and several interactions among the…

  8. An ERP study of recognition memory for concrete and abstract pictures in school-aged children.

    PubMed

    Boucher, Olivier; Chouinard-Leclaire, Christine; Muckle, Gina; Westerlund, Alissa; Burden, Matthew J; Jacobson, Sandra W; Jacobson, Joseph L

    2016-08-01

    Recognition memory for concrete, nameable pictures is typically faster and more accurate than for abstract pictures. A dual-coding account for these findings suggests that concrete pictures are processed into verbal and image codes, whereas abstract pictures are encoded in image codes only. Recognition memory relies on two successive and distinct processes, namely familiarity and recollection. Whether these two processes are similarly or differently affected by stimulus concreteness remains unknown. This study examined the effect of picture concreteness on visual recognition memory processes using event-related potentials (ERPs). In a sample of children involved in a longitudinal study, participants (N=96; mean age=11.3years) were assessed on a continuous visual recognition memory task in which half the pictures were easily nameable, everyday concrete objects, and the other half were three-dimensional abstract, sculpture-like objects. Behavioral performance and ERP correlates of familiarity and recollection (respectively, the FN400 and P600 repetition effects) were measured. Behavioral results indicated faster and more accurate identification of concrete pictures as "new" or "old" (i.e., previously displayed) compared to abstract pictures. ERPs were characterized by a larger repetition effect, on the P600 amplitude, for concrete than for abstract images, suggesting a graded recollection process dependent on the type of material to be recollected. Topographic differences were observed within the FN400 latency interval, especially over anterior-inferior electrodes, with the repetition effect more pronounced and localized over the left hemisphere for concrete stimuli, potentially reflecting different neural processes underlying early processing of verbal/semantic and visual material in memory. PMID:27329352

  9. An ERP study of recognition memory for concrete and abstract pictures in school-aged children.

    PubMed

    Boucher, Olivier; Chouinard-Leclaire, Christine; Muckle, Gina; Westerlund, Alissa; Burden, Matthew J; Jacobson, Sandra W; Jacobson, Joseph L

    2016-08-01

    Recognition memory for concrete, nameable pictures is typically faster and more accurate than for abstract pictures. A dual-coding account for these findings suggests that concrete pictures are processed into verbal and image codes, whereas abstract pictures are encoded in image codes only. Recognition memory relies on two successive and distinct processes, namely familiarity and recollection. Whether these two processes are similarly or differently affected by stimulus concreteness remains unknown. This study examined the effect of picture concreteness on visual recognition memory processes using event-related potentials (ERPs). In a sample of children involved in a longitudinal study, participants (N=96; mean age=11.3years) were assessed on a continuous visual recognition memory task in which half the pictures were easily nameable, everyday concrete objects, and the other half were three-dimensional abstract, sculpture-like objects. Behavioral performance and ERP correlates of familiarity and recollection (respectively, the FN400 and P600 repetition effects) were measured. Behavioral results indicated faster and more accurate identification of concrete pictures as "new" or "old" (i.e., previously displayed) compared to abstract pictures. ERPs were characterized by a larger repetition effect, on the P600 amplitude, for concrete than for abstract images, suggesting a graded recollection process dependent on the type of material to be recollected. Topographic differences were observed within the FN400 latency interval, especially over anterior-inferior electrodes, with the repetition effect more pronounced and localized over the left hemisphere for concrete stimuli, potentially reflecting different neural processes underlying early processing of verbal/semantic and visual material in memory.

  10. Effects of ipsilateral and bilateral auditory stimuli on audiovisual integration: a behavioral and event-related potential study.

    PubMed

    Gao, Yulin; Li, Qi; Yang, Weiping; Yang, Jingjing; Tang, Xiaoyu; Wu, Jinglong

    2014-06-18

    We used event-related potential measures to compare the effects of ipsilateral and bilateral auditory stimuli on audiovisual (AV) integration. Behavioral results showed that the responses to visual stimuli with either type of auditory stimulus were faster than responses to visual stimuli only and that perceptual sensitivity (d') for visual detection was enhanced for visual stimuli with ipsilateral auditory stimuli. Furthermore, event-related potential components related to AV integrations were identified over the occipital areas at ∼180-200 ms during early-stage sensory processing by the effect of ipsilateral auditory stimuli and over the frontocentral areas at ∼300-320 ms during late-stage cognitive processing by the effect of ipsilateral and bilateral auditory stimuli. Our results confirmed that AV integration was also elicited, despite the effect of bilateral auditory stimuli, and only occurred at later stages of cognitive processing in response to a visual detection task. Furthermore, integration from early-stage sensory processing was observed by the effect of ipsilateral auditory stimuli, suggesting that the integration of AV information in the human brain might be particularly sensitive to ipsilaterally presented AV stimuli.

  11. Exposure to virtual social stimuli modulates subjective pain reports

    PubMed Central

    Vigil, Jacob M; Torres, Daniel; Wolff, Alexander; Hughes, Katy

    2014-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Contextual factors, including the gender of researchers, influence experimental and patient pain reports. It is currently not known how social stimuli influence pain percepts, nor which types of sensory modalities of communication, such as auditory, visual or olfactory cues associated with person perception and gender processing, produce these effects. OBJECTIVES: To determine whether exposure to two forms of social stimuli (audio and visual) from a virtual male or female stranger modulates cold pressor task (CPT) pain reports. METHODS: Participants with similar demographic characteristics conducted a CPT in solitude, without the physical presence of an experimenter or another person. During the CPT, participants were exposed to the voice and image of a virtual male or female stranger. The voices had analogous vocal prosody, provided no semantic information (spoken in a foreign language) and differed only in pitch; the images depicted a middle-age male or female health care practitioner. RESULTS: Male participants, but not females, showed higher CPT pain intensity when they were exposed to the female stimuli compared with the male stimuli. Follow-up analyses showed that the association between the social stimuli and variability in pain sensitivity was not moderated by individual differences in subjective (eg, self-image) or objective measurements of one’s physical stature. DISCUSSION: The findings show that exposure to virtual, gender-based auditory and visual social stimuli influences exogenous pain sensitivity. CONCLUSION: Further research on how contextual factors, such as the vocal properties of health care examiners and exposure to background voices, may influence momentary pain perception is necessary for creating more standardized methods for measuring patient pain reports in clinical settings. PMID:24911175

  12. Visual feedback in stuttering therapy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smolka, Elzbieta

    1997-02-01

    The aim of this paper is to present the results concerning the influence of visual echo and reverberation on the speech process of stutterers. Visual stimuli along with the influence of acoustic and visual-acoustic stimuli have been compared. Following this the methods of implementing visual feedback with the aid of electroluminescent diodes directed by speech signals have been presented. The concept of a computerized visual echo based on the acoustic recognition of Polish syllabic vowels has been also presented. All the research nd trials carried out at our center, aside from cognitive aims, generally aim at the development of new speech correctors to be utilized in stuttering therapy.

  13. How do people order stimuli?

    PubMed

    Kemp, Simon; Grace, Randolph C

    2014-08-01

    People may find it easier to construct an order after first representing stimuli on a scale or categorizing them, particularly when the number of stimuli to be ordered is large or when some of them must be remembered. Five experiments tested this hypothesis. In two of these experiments (1 and 3), we asked participants to rank line lengths or to rank photographs by artistic value. The participants provided evidence of how they performed these tasks, and this evidence indicated that they often made use of some preliminary representation--either a metric or a categorization. Two further experiments (2 and 4) indicated that people rarely produced rankings when given a choice of assessment measures for either the length of lines or the artistic value of photographs. In Experiment 5, when the number of lines was larger or lines were only visible one at a time, participants were faster at estimating line lengths as a percentage of the card covered than at rank ordering the lengths. Overall, the results indicate that ordering stimuli is not an easy or natural process when the number of stimuli is large or when the stimuli are not all perceptible at once. An implication is that the psychological measures available to individuals are not likely to be purely ordinal when many of the elements being measured must be recalled.

  14. Infants' Visual Localization of Visual and Auditory Targets.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bechtold, A. Gordon; And Others

    This study is an investigation of 2-month-old infants' abilities to visually localize visual and auditory peripheral stimuli. Each subject (N=40) was presented with 50 trials; 25 of these visual and 25 auditory. The infant was placed in a semi-upright infant seat positioned 122 cm from the center speaker of an arc formed by five loudspeakers. At…

  15. Psychological Abstracts/BRS.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dolan, Donna R.

    1978-01-01

    Discusses particular problems and possible solutions in searching the Psychological Abstracts database, with special reference to its loading on BRS. Included are examples of typical searches, citations (with or without abstract/annotation), a tabulated searchguide to Psychological Abstracts on BRS and specifications for the database. (Author/JD)

  16. Abstraction and Consolidation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Monaghan, John; Ozmantar, Mehmet Fatih

    2006-01-01

    The framework for this paper is a recently developed theory of abstraction in context. The paper reports on data collected from one student working on tasks concerned with absolute value functions. It examines the relationship between mathematical constructions and abstractions. It argues that an abstraction is a consolidated construction that can…

  17. Decreased visual detection during subliminal stimulation.

    PubMed

    Bareither, Isabelle; Villringer, Arno; Busch, Niko A

    2014-01-01

    What is the perceptual fate of invisible stimuli-are they processed at all and does their processing have consequences for the perception of other stimuli? As has been shown previously in the somatosensory system, even stimuli that are too weak to be consciously detected can influence our perception: Subliminal stimulation impairs perception of near-threshold stimuli and causes a functional deactivation in the somatosensory cortex. In a recent study, we showed that subliminal visual stimuli lead to similar responses, indicated by an increase in alpha-band power as measured with electroencephalography (EEG). In the current study, we investigated whether a behavioral inhibitory mechanism also exists within the visual system. We tested the detection of peripheral visual target stimuli under three different conditions: Target stimuli were presented alone or embedded in a concurrent train of subliminal stimuli either at the same location as the target or in the opposite hemifield. Subliminal stimuli were invisible due to their low contrast, not due to a masking procedure. We demonstrate that target detection was impaired by the subliminal stimuli, but only when they were presented at the same location as the target. This finding indicates that subliminal, low-intensity stimuli induce a similar inhibitory effect in the visual system as has been observed in the somatosensory system. In line with previous reports, we propose that the function underlying this effect is the inhibition of spurious noise by the visual system. PMID:25326606

  18. Olfactory Stimuli Increase Presence in Virtual Environments

    PubMed Central

    Munyan, Benson G.; Neer, Sandra M.; Beidel, Deborah C.; Jentsch, Florian

    2016-01-01

    Background Exposure therapy (EXP) is the most empirically supported treatment for anxiety and trauma-related disorders. EXP consists of repeated exposure to a feared object or situation in the absence of the feared outcome in order to extinguish associated anxiety. Key to the success of EXP is the need to present the feared object/event/situation in as much detail and utilizing as many sensory modalities as possible, in order to augment the sense of presence during exposure sessions. Various technologies used to augment the exposure therapy process by presenting multi-sensory cues (e.g., sights, smells, sounds). Studies have shown that scents can elicit emotionally charged memories, but no prior research has examined the effect of olfactory stimuli upon the patient’s sense of presence during simulated exposure tasks. Methods 60 adult participants navigated a mildly anxiety-producing virtual environment (VE) similar to those used in the treatment of anxiety disorders. Participants had no autobiographical memory associated with the VE. State anxiety, Presence ratings, and electrodermal (EDA) activity were collected throughout the experiment. Results Utilizing a Bonferroni corrected Linear Mixed Model, our results showed statistically significant relationships between olfactory stimuli and presence as assessed by both the Igroup Presence Questionnaire (IPQ: R2 = 0.85, (F(3,52) = 6.625, p = 0.0007) and a single item visual-analogue scale (R2 = 0.85, (F(3,52) = 5.382, p = 0.0027). State anxiety was unaffected by the presence or absence of olfactory cues. EDA was unaffected by experimental condition. Conclusion Olfactory stimuli increase presence in virtual environments that approximate those typical in exposure therapy, but did not increase EDA. Additionally, once administered, the removal of scents resulted in a disproportionate decrease in presence. Implications for incorporating the use of scents to increase the efficacy of exposure therapy is discussed. PMID

  19. Responses of cells in the tail of the caudate nucleus during visual discrimination learning.

    PubMed

    Brown, V J; Desimone, R; Mishkin, M

    1995-09-01

    1. The tail of the caudate nucleus and adjacent ventral putamen (ventrocaudal neostriatum) are major projection sites of the extrastriate visual cortex. Visual information is then relayed, directly or indirectly, to a variety of structures with motor functions. To test for a role of the ventrocaudal neostriatum in stimulus-response association learning, or habit formation, neuronal responses were recorded while monkeys performed a visual discrimination task. Additional data were collected from cells in cortical area TF, which serve as a comparison and control for the caudate data. 2. Two monkeys were trained to perform an asymmetrically reinforced go-no go visual discrimination. The stimuli were complex colored patterns, randomly assigned to be either positive or negative. The monkey was rewarded with juice for releasing a bar when a positive stimulus was presented, whereas a negative stimulus signaled that no reward was available and that the monkey should withhold its response. Neuronal responses were recorded both while the monkey performed the task with previously learned stimuli and while it learned the task with new stimuli. In some cases, responses were recorded during reversal learning. 3. There was no evidence that cells in the ventrocaudal neostriatum were influenced by the reward contingencies of the task. Cells did not fire preferentially to the onset of either positive or negative stimuli; neither did cells fire in response to the reward itself or in association with the motor response of the monkey. Only visual responses were apparent. 4. The visual properties of cells in these structures resembled those of cells in some of the cortical areas projecting to them. Most cells responded selectively to different visual stimuli. The degree of stimulus selectivity was assessed with discriminant analysis and was found to be quantitatively similar to that of inferior temporal cells tested with similar stimuli. Likewise, like inferior temporal cells, many cells

  20. Stimuli-responsive polymer films.

    PubMed

    Zhai, Lei

    2013-09-01

    Stimuli-responsive polymer films undergo interesting structural and property changes upon external stimuli. Their applications have extended from smart coatings to controlled drug release, smart windows, self-repair and other fields. This tutorial review summarizes non-covalent bonding, reversible reactions and responsive molecules that have played important roles in creating stimuli-responsive systems, and presents the recent development of three types of responsive polymer systems: layer-by-layer polymer multilayer films, polymer brushes, and self-repairing polymer films, with a discussion of their response mechanism. Future research efforts include comprehensive understanding of the response mechanism, producing polymer systems with controlled response properties regarding single or multiple external signals, combining polymer film fabrication with nanotechnology, improving the stability of polymer films on substrates, and evaluating the toxicity of the degradation products. PMID:23749141

  1. Abstraction and Problem Reformulation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Giunchiglia, Fausto

    1992-01-01

    In work done jointly with Toby Walsh, the author has provided a sound theoretical foundation to the process of reasoning with abstraction (GW90c, GWS9, GW9Ob, GW90a). The notion of abstraction formalized in this work can be informally described as: (property 1), the process of mapping a representation of a problem, called (following historical convention (Sac74)) the 'ground' representation, onto a new representation, called the 'abstract' representation, which, (property 2) helps deal with the problem in the original search space by preserving certain desirable properties and (property 3) is simpler to handle as it is constructed from the ground representation by "throwing away details". One desirable property preserved by an abstraction is provability; often there is a relationship between provability in the ground representation and provability in the abstract representation. Another can be deduction or, possibly inconsistency. By 'throwing away details' we usually mean that the problem is described in a language with a smaller search space (for instance a propositional language or a language without variables) in which formulae of the abstract representation are obtained from the formulae of the ground representation by the use of some terminating rewriting technique. Often we require that the use of abstraction results in more efficient .reasoning. However, it might simply increase the number of facts asserted (eg. by allowing, in practice, the exploration of deeper search spaces or by implementing some form of learning). Among all abstractions, three very important classes have been identified. They relate the set of facts provable in the ground space to those provable in the abstract space. We call: TI abstractions all those abstractions where the abstractions of all the provable facts of the ground space are provable in the abstract space; TD abstractions all those abstractions wllere the 'unabstractions' of all the provable facts of the abstract space are

  2. The perception of isoluminant coloured stimuli of amblyopic eye and defocused eye

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krumina, Gunta; Ozolinsh, Maris; Ikaunieks, Gatis

    2008-09-01

    In routine eye examination the visual acuity usually is determined using standard charts with black letters on a white background, however contrast and colour are important characteristics of visual perception. The purpose of research was to study the perception of isoluminant coloured stimuli in the cases of true and simulated amlyopia. We estimated difference in visual acuity with isoluminant coloured stimuli comparing to that for high contrast black-white stimuli for true amblyopia and simulated amblyopia. Tests were generated on computer screen. Visual acuity was detected using different charts in two ways: standard achromatic stimuli (black symbols on a white background) and isoluminant coloured stimuli (white symbols on a yellow background, grey symbols on blue, green or red background). Thus isoluminant tests had colour contrast only but had no luminance contrast. Visual acuity evaluated with the standard method and colour tests were studied for subjects with good visual acuity, if necessary using the best vision correction. The same was performed for subjects with defocused eye and with true amblyopia. Defocus was realized with optical lenses placed in front of the normal eye. The obtained results applying the isoluminant colour charts revealed worsening of the visual acuity comparing with the visual acuity estimated with a standard high contrast method (black symbols on a white background).

  3. Effects of Verbal Ability, Audio-Pictorial Stimuli and Print-Verbal Stimuli on the Reading and Writing Abilities of Early Adolescent Students.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Thompson, Nancy S.

    Because audio-visual information is pervasive in contemporary cultural communications, this study looked at the importance of audio-visual information and how it can be used for educational purposes. Specifically, the study compared the effectiveness of audio-pictorial slide-tape presentations and printed verbal language selections as stimuli for…

  4. Dynamic stimuli: accentuating aesthetic preference biases.

    PubMed

    Friedrich, Trista E; Harms, Victoria L; Elias, Lorin J

    2014-01-01

    Despite humans' preference for symmetry, artwork often portrays asymmetrical characteristics that influence the viewer's aesthetic preference for the image. When presented with asymmetrical images, aesthetic preference is often given to images whose content flows from left-to-right and whose mass is located on the right of the image. Cerebral lateralization has been suggested to account for the left-to-right directionality bias; however, the influence of cultural factors, such as scanning habits, on aesthetic preference biases is debated. The current research investigates aesthetic preference for mobile objects and landscapes, as previous research has found contrasting preference for the two image types. Additionally, the current experiment examines the effects of dynamic movement on directionality preference to test the assumption that static images are perceived as aesthetically equivalent to dynamic images. After viewing mirror-imaged pairs of pictures and videos, right-to-left readers failed to show a preference bias, whereas left-to-right readers preferred stimuli with left-to-right directionality regardless of the location of the mass. The directionality bias in both reading groups was accentuated by the videos, but the bias was significantly stronger in left-to-right readers. The findings suggest that scanning habits moderate the leftward bias resulting from hemispheric specialization and that dynamic stimuli further fluent visual processing.

  5. MULTIFUNCTIONAL AND STIMULI-SENSITIVE PHARMACEUTICAL NANOCARRIERS

    PubMed Central

    Torchilin, Vladimir

    2011-01-01

    Currently used pharmaceutical nanocarriers, such as liposomes, micelles, and polymeric nanoparticles, demonstrate a broad variety of useful properties, such as longevity in the body; specific targeting to certain disease sites; enhanced intracellular penetration; contrast properties allowing for direct carrier visualization in vivo; stimili-sensitivity, and others. Some of those pharmaceutical carriers have already made their way into clinic, while others are still under preclinical development. In certain cases, the pharmaceutical nanocarriers combine several of the listed properties. Long-circulating immunoliposomes capable of prolonged residence in the blood and specific target recognition represent one of examples of this kind. The engineering of multifunctional pharmaceutical nanocarriers combining several useful properties in one particle can significantly enhance the efficacy of many therapeutic and diagnostic protocols. This paper considers the current status and possible future directions in the emerging area of multifunctional nanocarriers with primary attention on the combination of such properties as longevity, targetability, intracellular penetration, contrast loading, and stimuli sensitivity. PMID:18977297

  6. Stimuli, Reinforcers, and Private Events

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nevin, John A.

    2008-01-01

    Radical behaviorism considers private events to be a part of ongoing observable behavior and to share the properties of public events. Although private events cannot be measured directly, their roles in overt action can be inferred from mathematical models that relate private responses to external stimuli and reinforcers according to the same…

  7. Active versus passive maintenance of visual nonverbal memory.

    PubMed

    McKeown, Denis; Holt, Jessica; Delvenne, Jean-Francois; Smith, Amy; Griffiths, Benjamin

    2014-08-01

    Forgetting over the short term has challenged researchers for more than a century, largely because of the difficulty of controlling what goes on within the memory retention interval. But the "recent-negative-probe" procedure offers a valuable paradigm, by examining the influences of (presumably) unattended memoranda from prior trials. Here we used a recent-probe task to investigate forgetting for visual nonverbal short-term memory. The target stimuli (two visually presented abstract shapes) on a trial were followed after a retention interval by a probe, and participants indicated whether the probe matched one of the target items. Proactive interference, and hence memory for old trial probes, was observed, whereby participants were slowed in rejecting a nonmatching probe on the current trial that nevertheless matched a target item on the previous trial (a recent-negative probe). The attraction of the paradigm is that, by uncovering proactive influences of past-trial probe stimuli, it can be argued that active maintenance in memory of those probes is unlikely. In two experiments, we recorded such proactive interference of prior-trial items over a range of interstimulus (ISI) and intertrial (ITI) intervals (between 1 and 6 s, respectively). Consistent with a proposed two-process memory conception (the active-passive memory model, or APM), actively maintained memories on current trials decayed, but passively "maintained," or unattended, visual memories of stimuli on past trials did not. PMID:24390797

  8. Auditory Emotional Cues Enhance Visual Perception

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zeelenberg, Rene; Bocanegra, Bruno R.

    2010-01-01

    Recent studies show that emotional stimuli impair performance to subsequently presented neutral stimuli. Here we show a cross-modal perceptual enhancement caused by emotional cues. Auditory cue words were followed by a visually presented neutral target word. Two-alternative forced-choice identification of the visual target was improved by…

  9. Loving Those Abstracts

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stevens, Lori

    2004-01-01

    The author describes a lesson she did on abstract art with her high school art classes. She passed out a required step-by-step outline of the project process. She asked each of them to look at abstract art. They were to list five or six abstract artists they thought were interesting, narrow their list down to the one most personally intriguing,…

  10. Advantage of dichromats over trichromats in discrimination of color-camouflaged stimuli in humans.

    PubMed

    Saito, Atsuko; Mikami, Akichika; Hosokawa, Takayuki; Hasegawa, Toshikazu

    2006-02-01

    This study investigated whether 12 participants with color-vision deficiency had superior visual discrimination of color-camouflaged stimuli shown on a computer screen compared with 12 participants with normal trichromatic vision. Participants were asked to distinguish a circular pattern from other patterns in which textural elements differed from the background in orientation and thickness. In one condition, stimuli were single-colored, green or red; in the other condition, stimuli were color camouflaged with a green and red mosaic overlaid onto the pattern. Color-vision deficient participants selected the correct stimuli in the color-camouflaged condition as quickly as they did in the single-colored condition. However, normal color-vision participants took longer to select the correct choice in the color-camouflaged condition than in the single-colored condition. These results suggest that participants with color-vision deficiency may have a superior visual ability to discriminate the color-camouflaged stimuli. PMID:16671590

  11. A sex difference in visual influence on heard speech.

    PubMed

    Irwin, Julia R; Whalen, D H; Fowler, Carol A

    2006-05-01

    Reports of sex differences in language processing are inconsistent and are thought to vary by task type and difficulty. In two experiments, we investigated a sex difference in visual influence onheard speech (the McGurk effect). First, incongruent consonant-vowel stimuli were presented where the visual portion of the signal was brief (100 msec) or full (temporally equivalent to the auditory). Second, to determine whether men and women differed in their ability to extract visual speech information from these brief stimuli, the same stimuli were presented to new participants with an additional visual-only (lipread) condition. In both experiments, women showed a significantly greater visual influence on heard speech than did men for the brief visual stimuli. No sex differences for the full stimuli or in the ability to lipread were found. These findings indicate that the more challenging brief visual stimuli elicit sex differences in the processing of audiovisual speech.

  12. Visualizing thought.

    PubMed

    Tversky, Barbara

    2011-07-01

    Depictive expressions of thought predate written language by thousands of years. They have evolved in communities through a kind of informal user testing that has refined them. Analyzing common visual communications reveals consistencies that illuminate how people think as well as guide design; the process can be brought into the laboratory and accelerated. Like language, visual communications abstract and schematize; unlike language, they use properties of the page (e.g., proximity and place: center, horizontal/up-down, vertical/left-right) and the marks on it (e.g., dots, lines, arrows, boxes, blobs, likenesses, symbols) to convey meanings. The visual expressions of these meanings (e.g., individual, category, order, relation, correspondence, continuum, hierarchy) have analogs in language, gesture, and especially in the patterns that are created when people design the world around them, arranging things into piles and rows and hierarchies and arrays, spatial-abstraction-action interconnections termed spractions. The designed world is a diagram.

  13. Alliesthesia to food cues: heterogeneity across stimuli and sensory modalities.

    PubMed

    Jiang, Tao; Soussignan, Robert; Rigaud, Daniel; Martin, Sylviane; Royet, Jean-Pierre; Brondel, Laurent; Schaal, Benoist

    2008-10-20

    Negative alliesthesia to olfactory and visual stimuli was assessed in 29 normal-weight women who, on alternate days, were either fasting or in a postprandial state after an ad libitum lunch. The participants were alternatively exposed to food and non-food pictures and odorants, and then rated for their hedonic appreciation (liking) and their desire to ingest (wanting) the evoked foods. While negative alliesthesia was observed only for food stimuli, it did not equally affect all food categories in either sensory modality. The stimuli representing foods eaten in typical local main dishes or having high energy density (e.g., pizza, bacon, beef, cheese) evoked clear negative alliesthesia, whereas this was not the case for those less consumed within a customary meal or associated with desserts (i.e., fruits). Furthermore, the visual food stimuli triggered a more negative shift in liking than did the food odours. Finally, the shift in wanting between pre- and post-meal state was more important than the shift in liking. These results suggest that alliesthesia may be influenced by both metabolic and non-metabolic factors.

  14. Reliable activation to novel stimuli predicts higher fluid intelligence.

    PubMed

    Euler, Matthew J; Weisend, Michael P; Jung, Rex E; Thoma, Robert J; Yeo, Ronald A

    2015-07-01

    The ability to reliably respond to stimuli could be an important biological determinant of differences in fluid intelligence (Gf). However, most electrophysiological studies of Gf employ event-related potential (ERP) measures that average brain activity over trials, and hence have limited power to quantify neural variability. Time-frequency analyses can capture cross-trial variation in the phase of neural activity, and thus can help address the importance of neural reliability to differences in Gf. This study recruited a community sample of healthy adults and measured inter-trial phase clustering (ITPC), total spectral power, and ERP amplitudes elicited by Repeated and Novel non-target stimuli during two visual oddball tasks. Condition effects, relations among the EEG measures, and relations with Gf were assessed. Early visual responses to Repeated stimuli elicited higher ITPC, yet only ITPC elicited by Novel stimuli was associated with Gf. Analyses of spectral power further highlighted the contribution of phase consistency to the findings. The link between Gf and reliable responding to changing inputs suggests an important role for flexible resource allocation in fluid intellectual skills.

  15. The influence of spatial pattern on visual short-term memory for contrast.

    PubMed

    Xing, Yue; Ledgeway, Tim; McGraw, Paul; Schluppeck, Denis

    2014-10-01

    Several psychophysical studies of visual short-term memory (VSTM) have shown high-fidelity storage capacity for many properties of visual stimuli. On judgments of the spatial frequency of gratings, for example, discrimination performance does not decrease significantly, even for memory intervals of up to 30 s. For other properties, such as stimulus orientation and contrast, however, such "perfect storage" behavior is not found, although the reasons for this difference remain unresolved. Here, we report two experiments in which we investigated the nature of the representation of stimulus contrast in VSTM using spatially complex, two-dimensional random-noise stimuli. We addressed whether information about contrast per se is retained during the memory interval by using a test stimulus with the same spatial structure but either the same or the opposite local contrast polarity, with respect to the comparison (i.e., remembered) stimulus. We found that discrimination thresholds got steadily worse with increasing duration of the memory interval. Furthermore, performance was better when the test and comparison stimuli had the same local contrast polarity than when they were contrast-reversed. Finally, when a noise mask was introduced during the memory interval, its disruptive effect was maximal when the spatial configuration of its constituent elements was uncorrelated with those of the comparison and test stimuli. These results suggest that VSTM for contrast is closely tied to the spatial configuration of stimuli and is not transformed into a more abstract representation.

  16. Mathematical Abstraction through Scaffolding

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ozmantar, Mehmet Fatih; Roper, Tom

    2004-01-01

    This paper examines the role of scaffolding in the process of abstraction. An activity-theoretic approach to abstraction in context is taken. This examination is carried out with reference to verbal protocols of two 17 year-old students working together on a task connected to sketching the graph of |f|x|)|. Examination of the data suggests that…

  17. Is It Really Abstract?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kernan, Christine

    2011-01-01

    For this author, one of the most enjoyable aspects of teaching elementary art is the willingness of students to embrace the different styles of art introduced to them. In this article, she describes a project that allows upper-elementary students to learn about abstract art and the lives of some of the master abstract artists, implement the idea…

  18. Designing for Mathematical Abstraction

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pratt, Dave; Noss, Richard

    2010-01-01

    Our focus is on the design of systems (pedagogical, technical, social) that encourage mathematical abstraction, a process we refer to as "designing for abstraction." In this paper, we draw on detailed design experiments from our research on children's understanding about chance and distribution to re-present this work as a case study in designing…

  19. Paper Abstract Animals

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sutley, Jane

    2010-01-01

    Abstraction is, in effect, a simplification and reduction of shapes with an absence of detail designed to comprise the essence of the more naturalistic images being depicted. Without even intending to, young children consistently create interesting, and sometimes beautiful, abstract compositions. A child's creations, moreover, will always seem to…

  20. Leadership Abstracts, 1995.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Johnson, Larry, Ed.

    1995-01-01

    The abstracts in this series provide two-page discussions of issues related to leadership, administration, and teaching in community colleges. The 12 abstracts for Volume 8, 1995, are: (1) "Redesigning the System To Meet the Workforce Training Needs of the Nation," by Larry Warford; (2) "The College President, the Board, and the Board Chair: A…

  1. Concept Formation and Abstraction.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lunzer, Eric A.

    1979-01-01

    This paper examines the nature of concepts and conceptual processes and the manner of their formation. It argues that a process of successive abstraction and systematization is central to the evolution of conceptual structures. Classificatory processes are discussed and three levels of abstraction outlined. (Author/SJL)

  2. Data Abstraction in GLISP.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Novak, Gordon S., Jr.

    GLISP is a high-level computer language (based on Lisp and including Lisp as a sublanguage) which is compiled into Lisp. GLISP programs are compiled relative to a knowledge base of object descriptions, a form of abstract datatypes. A primary goal of the use of abstract datatypes in GLISP is to allow program code to be written in terms of objects,…

  3. Leadership Abstracts, Volume 10.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Milliron, Mark D., Ed.

    1997-01-01

    The abstracts in this series provide brief discussions of issues related to leadership, administration, professional development, technology, and education in community colleges. Volume 10 for 1997 contains the following 12 abstracts: (1) "On Community College Renewal" (Nathan L. Hodges and Mark D. Milliron); (2) "The Community College Niche in a…

  4. Happiness increases distraction by auditory deviant stimuli.

    PubMed

    Pacheco-Unguetti, Antonia Pilar; Parmentier, Fabrice B R

    2016-08-01

    Rare and unexpected changes (deviants) in an otherwise repeated stream of task-irrelevant auditory distractors (standards) capture attention and impair behavioural performance in an ongoing visual task. Recent evidence indicates that this effect is increased by sadness in a task involving neutral stimuli. We tested the hypothesis that such effect may not be limited to negative emotions but reflect a general depletion of attentional resources by examining whether a positive emotion (happiness) would increase deviance distraction too. Prior to performing an auditory-visual oddball task, happiness or a neutral mood was induced in participants by means of the exposure to music and the recollection of an autobiographical event. Results from the oddball task showed significantly larger deviance distraction following the induction of happiness. Interestingly, the small amount of distraction typically observed on the standard trial following a deviant trial (post-deviance distraction) was not increased by happiness. We speculate that happiness might interfere with the disengagement of attention from the deviant sound back towards the target stimulus (through the depletion of cognitive resources and/or mind wandering) but help subsequent cognitive control to recover from distraction. PMID:26302716

  5. Happiness increases distraction by auditory deviant stimuli.

    PubMed

    Pacheco-Unguetti, Antonia Pilar; Parmentier, Fabrice B R

    2016-08-01

    Rare and unexpected changes (deviants) in an otherwise repeated stream of task-irrelevant auditory distractors (standards) capture attention and impair behavioural performance in an ongoing visual task. Recent evidence indicates that this effect is increased by sadness in a task involving neutral stimuli. We tested the hypothesis that such effect may not be limited to negative emotions but reflect a general depletion of attentional resources by examining whether a positive emotion (happiness) would increase deviance distraction too. Prior to performing an auditory-visual oddball task, happiness or a neutral mood was induced in participants by means of the exposure to music and the recollection of an autobiographical event. Results from the oddball task showed significantly larger deviance distraction following the induction of happiness. Interestingly, the small amount of distraction typically observed on the standard trial following a deviant trial (post-deviance distraction) was not increased by happiness. We speculate that happiness might interfere with the disengagement of attention from the deviant sound back towards the target stimulus (through the depletion of cognitive resources and/or mind wandering) but help subsequent cognitive control to recover from distraction.

  6. Abstract Datatypes in PVS

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Owre, Sam; Shankar, Natarajan

    1997-01-01

    PVS (Prototype Verification System) is a general-purpose environment for developing specifications and proofs. This document deals primarily with the abstract datatype mechanism in PVS which generates theories containing axioms and definitions for a class of recursive datatypes. The concepts underlying the abstract datatype mechanism are illustrated using ordered binary trees as an example. Binary trees are described by a PVS abstract datatype that is parametric in its value type. The type of ordered binary trees is then presented as a subtype of binary trees where the ordering relation is also taken as a parameter. We define the operations of inserting an element into, and searching for an element in an ordered binary tree; the bulk of the report is devoted to PVS proofs of some useful properties of these operations. These proofs illustrate various approaches to proving properties of abstract datatype operations. They also describe the built-in capabilities of the PVS proof checker for simplifying abstract datatype expressions.

  7. Abstract coherent categories.

    PubMed

    Rehder, B; Ross, B H

    2001-09-01

    Many studies have demonstrated the importance of the knowledge that interrelates features in people's mental representation of categories and that makes our conception of categories coherent. This article focuses on abstract coherent categories, coherent categories that are also abstract because they are defined by relations independently of any features. Four experiments demonstrate that abstract coherent categories are learned more easily than control categories with identical features and statistical structure, and also that participants induced an abstract representation of the category by granting category membership to exemplars with completely novel features. The authors argue that the human conceptual system is heavily populated with abstract coherent concepts, including conceptions of social groups, societal institutions, legal, political, and military scenarios, and many superordinate categories, such as classes of natural kinds. PMID:11550753

  8. Automatic Processing of Perceptual-Linguistic Stimuli in Second Grade Achieving and Non-Achieving Readers.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Swallow, Rose-Marie

    This study examined automatic processing of perceptual stimuli (auditory, visual, auditory-visual) and of linguistic units (morphological rules, grammatical structures, and syntactical control). Sixty average (85-115 IQ), Caucasian, middle class, eight-year-old boys were selected from La Habra School District second grades. The testing instruments…

  9. In the Eyes of the Beholder: How Experts and Novices Interpret Dynamic Stimuli

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jarodzka, Halszka; Scheiter, Katharina; Gerjets, Peter; van Gog, Tamara

    2010-01-01

    Tasks with a complex, dynamic visual component require not only the acquisition of conceptual/procedural but also of perceptual/attentional skills. This study examined expertise differences in perceiving and interpreting complex, dynamic visual stimuli on a performance and on a process level, including perceptual and conceptual strategies.…

  10. How information visualization novices construct visualizations.

    PubMed

    Grammel, Lars; Tory, Melanie; Storey, Margaret-Anne

    2010-01-01

    It remains challenging for information visualization novices to rapidly construct visualizations during exploratory data analysis. We conducted an exploratory laboratory study in which information visualization novices explored fictitious sales data by communicating visualization specifications to a human mediator, who rapidly constructed the visualizations using commercial visualization software. We found that three activities were central to the iterative visualization construction process: data attribute selection, visual template selection, and visual mapping specification. The major barriers faced by the participants were translating questions into data attributes, designing visual mappings, and interpreting the visualizations. Partial specification was common, and the participants used simple heuristics and preferred visualizations they were already familiar with, such as bar, line and pie charts. We derived abstract models from our observations that describe barriers in the data exploration process and uncovered how information visualization novices think about visualization specifications. Our findings support the need for tools that suggest potential visualizations and support iterative refinement, that provide explanations and help with learning, and that are tightly integrated into tool support for the overall visual analytics process.

  11. 2016 ACPA MEETING ABSTRACTS.

    PubMed

    2016-07-01

    The peer-reviewed abstracts presented at the 73rd Annual Meeting of the ACPA are published as submitted by the authors. For financial conflict of interest disclosure, please visit http://meeting.acpa-cpf.org/disclosures.html. PMID:27447885

  12. Abstracts--Citations

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Occupational Mental Health, 1971

    1971-01-01

    Provides abstracts and citations of journal articles and reports dealing with aspects of mental health. Topics include alcoholism, drug abuse, disadvantaged, mental health programs, rehabilitation, student mental health, and others. (SB)

  13. Automatic Abstraction in Planning

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Christensen, J.

    1991-01-01

    Traditionally, abstraction in planning has been accomplished by either state abstraction or operator abstraction, neither of which has been fully automatic. We present a new method, predicate relaxation, for automatically performing state abstraction. PABLO, a nonlinear hierarchical planner, implements predicate relaxation. Theoretical, as well as empirical results are presented which demonstrate the potential advantages of using predicate relaxation in planning. We also present a new definition of hierarchical operators that allows us to guarantee a limited form of completeness. This new definition is shown to be, in some ways, more flexible than previous definitions of hierarchical operators. Finally, a Classical Truth Criterion is presented that is proven to be sound and complete for a planning formalism that is general enough to include most classical planning formalisms that are based on the STRIPS assumption.

  14. Introducing Abstract Design

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ciscell, Bob

    1973-01-01

    A functional approach involving collage, two-dimensional design, three-dimensional construction, and elements of Cubism, is used to teach abstract design in elementary and junior high school art classes. (DS)

  15. Abstracts of SIG Sessions.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Proceedings of the ASIS Annual Meeting, 1991

    1991-01-01

    Presents abstracts of 36 special interest group (SIG) sessions. Highlights include the Chemistry Online Retrieval Experiment; organizing and retrieving images; intelligent information retrieval using natural language processing; interdisciplinarity; libraries as publishers; indexing hypermedia; cognitive aspects of classification; computer-aided…

  16. 1971 Annual Conference Abstracts

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Journal of Engineering Education, 1971

    1971-01-01

    Included are 112 abstracts listed under headings such as: acoustics, continuing engineering studies, educational research and methods, engineering design, libraries, liberal studies, and materials. Other areas include agricultural, electrical, mechanical, mineral, and ocean engineering. (TS)

  17. Paradigms for Abstracting Systems.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pinto, Maria; Galvez, Carmen

    1999-01-01

    Discussion of abstracting systems focuses on the paradigm concept and identifies and explains four paradigms: communicational, or information theory; physical, including information retrieval; cognitive, including information processing and artificial intelligence; and systemic, including quality management. Emphasizes multidimensionality and…

  18. Abstracts of contributed papers

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1994-08-01

    This volume contains 571 abstracts of contributed papers to be presented during the Twelfth US National Congress of Applied Mechanics. Abstracts are arranged in the order in which they fall in the program -- the main sessions are listed chronologically in the Table of Contents. The Author Index is in alphabetical order and lists each paper number (matching the schedule in the Final Program) with its corresponding page number in the book.

  19. Using Group Explorer in Teaching Abstract Algebra

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schubert, Claus; Gfeller, Mary; Donohue, Christopher

    2013-01-01

    This study explores the use of Group Explorer in an undergraduate mathematics course in abstract algebra. The visual nature of Group Explorer in representing concepts in group theory is an attractive incentive to use this software in the classroom. However, little is known about students' perceptions on this technology in learning concepts in…

  20. The Child and the Abstract Expressionist.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Henkes, Robert

    1990-01-01

    Explores the similarities between paintings of the abstract expressionists and those of young children. Similarities include total surface coverage, disregard for details, direct application of pigment, disregard for visual perspective, and use of the painting surface as a frontal plane. (CB)

  1. Responses to moving small-field stimuli by the praying mantis, Sphodromantis lineola (Burmeister)

    PubMed

    Prete, F R; McLean, T; McMillin, P J

    1996-01-01

    Adult, female praying mantises, Sphodromantis lineola (Burmeister), were presented with mechanically driven or computer generated stimuli in a series of seven experiments in order to test several hypotheses regarding visual prey recognition. When presented with a series of square black and white computer generated stimuli against a white background, mantises performed the highest rates of predatory behavior in response to those stimuli with a greater proportion of black versus white pixels (i.e., those that produced larger luminance decrements). Higher response rates to computer generated stimuli that produced larger luminance decrements were also seen when the stimuli were irregularly shaped or consisted of two small synchronized stimuli. Mantises responded characteristically to mechanically driven stimuli that were camouflaged to match the background against which they moved, preferring small (vs. large) squares and rectangles that were elongated parallel (vs. perpendicular) to their direction of movement. Finally, response rate to a small, preferred mechanically presented or computer generated stimulus was suppressed by a concurrent large-field stimulus in inverse proportion to the distance between the two stimuli. This phenomenon is characteristic of systems that include phasic lateral inhibitory circuits. All of these results are consistent with the existence of a movement detector visual sub-system, as found in other orthopteromorph insects such as acridid grasshoppers and cockroaches. PMID:8834784

  2. Interocular suppression patterns in binocularly abnormal observers using luminance- and contrast-modulated noise stimuli.

    PubMed

    Chima, Akash S; Formankiewicz, Monika A; Waugh, Sarah J

    2016-08-01

    In binocular viewing, images presented to the amblyopic eye are suppressed in the cortex to prevent confusion or diplopia. The present study measures depth and extent of interocular suppression across the central circular 24° visual field in observers with strabismus and microstrabismus. Visual stimuli were concentric rings of alternating polarity, each divided into sectors. Rings were defined by luminance (L), luminance-modulated noise (LM), or contrast-modulated noise (CM). They were viewed binocularly except for the tested ring, which was viewed dichoptically, so that the modulation of one sector presented to the weaker or amblyopic eye was adjusted to perceptually match the surrounding ring presented to the preferred eye. A two alternative forced-choice paradigm combined with a staircase procedure allowed for measurement of the point of subjective equality, or perceptual match. Depth of suppression was calculated as the difference between physical modulations presented to the two eyes at this point. Strabismic participants showed suppression deeper centrally than peripherally, and in one hemifield of the visual field more than the other. Suppression was deeper for L than LM, and CM than LM stimuli. Microstrabismic suppression was weaker than that of strabismics, central for L and LM stimuli, with suppression of CM stimuli being broader, deeper and more in one hemifield. Suppression depth was positively correlated with interocular visual acuity difference and stereoacuity reduction. Clinically, LM stimuli could be used for assessment of deeper amblyopes to assess suppression patterns, while more sensitive detection of mild suppression would be possible using CM stimuli.

  3. Cerebral processing of food-related stimuli: effects of fasting and gender.

    PubMed

    Uher, Rudolf; Treasure, Janet; Heining, Maike; Brammer, Michael J; Campbell, Iain C

    2006-04-25

    To maintain nutritional homeostasis, external food-related stimuli have to be evaluated in relation to the internal states of hunger or satiety. To examine the neural circuitry responsible for integration of internal and external determinants of human eating behaviour, brain responses to visual and complex gustatory food-related stimuli were measured using functional magnetic resonance imaging in 18 healthy non-smokers (10 women, 8 men). Each individual was studied on two occasions, the order of which was counterbalanced; after eating as usual and after 24 h fasting. Raised plasma free fatty acids and lower insulin and leptin concentrations confirmed that participants fasted as requested. When fasted, participants reported more hunger, nervousness and worse mood and rated the visual (but not gustatory) food-related stimuli as more pleasant. The effect of fasting on hunger was stronger in women than in men. No circuitry was identified as differentially responsive in fasting compared to satiety to both visual and gustatory food-related stimuli. The left insula response to the gustatory stimuli was stronger during fasting. The inferior occipito-temporal response to visual food-related stimuli also tended to be stronger during fasting. The responses in the occipito-temporal cortex to visual and in the insula to gustatory stimuli were stronger in women than in men. There was no interaction between gender and fasting. In conclusion, food reactivity in modality-specific sensory cortical areas is modulated by internal motivational states. The stronger reactivity to external food-related stimuli in women may be explored as a marker of gender-related susceptibility to eating disorders.

  4. Emotional Stimuli and Motor Conversion Disorder

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Voon, Valerie; Brezing, Christina; Gallea, Cecile; Ameli, Rezvan; Roelofs, Karin; LaFrance, W. Curt, Jr.; Hallett, Mark

    2010-01-01

    Conversion disorder is characterized by neurological signs and symptoms related to an underlying psychological issue. Amygdala activity to affective stimuli is well characterized in healthy volunteers with greater amygdala activity to both negative and positive stimuli relative to neutral stimuli, and greater activity to negative relative to…

  5. Processing of unconventional stimuli requires the recruitment of the non-specialized hemisphere.

    PubMed

    Kenett, Yoed N; Anaki, David; Faust, Miriam

    2015-01-01

    In the present study we investigate hemispheric processing of conventional and unconventional visual stimuli in the context of visual and verbal creative ability. In Experiment 1, we studied two unconventional visual recognition tasks-Mooney face and objects' silhouette recognition-and found a significant relationship between measures of verbal creativity and unconventional face recognition. In Experiment 2 we used the split visual field (SVF) paradigm to investigate hemispheric processing of conventional and unconventional faces and its relation to verbal and visual characteristics of creativity. Results showed that while conventional faces were better processed by the specialized right hemisphere (RH), unconventional faces were better processed by the non-specialized left hemisphere (LH). In addition, only unconventional face processing by the non-specialized LH was related to verbal and visual measures of creative ability. Our findings demonstrate the role of the non-specialized hemisphere in processing unconventional stimuli and how it relates to creativity.

  6. Processing of unconventional stimuli requires the recruitment of the non-specialized hemisphere

    PubMed Central

    Kenett, Yoed N.; Anaki, David; Faust, Miriam

    2015-01-01

    In the present study we investigate hemispheric processing of conventional and unconventional visual stimuli in the context of visual and verbal creative ability. In Experiment 1, we studied two unconventional visual recognition tasks—Mooney face and objects’ silhouette recognition—and found a significant relationship between measures of verbal creativity and unconventional face recognition. In Experiment 2 we used the split visual field (SVF) paradigm to investigate hemispheric processing of conventional and unconventional faces and its relation to verbal and visual characteristics of creativity. Results showed that while conventional faces were better processed by the specialized right hemisphere (RH), unconventional faces were better processed by the non-specialized left hemisphere (LH). In addition, only unconventional face processing by the non-specialized LH was related to verbal and visual measures of creative ability. Our findings demonstrate the role of the non-specialized hemisphere in processing unconventional stimuli and how it relates to creativity. PMID:25709576

  7. Reasoning and dyslexia: is visual memory a compensatory resource?

    PubMed

    Bacon, Alison M; Handley, Simon J

    2014-11-01

    Effective reasoning is fundamental to problem solving and achievement in education and employment. Protocol studies have previously suggested that people with dyslexia use reasoning strategies based on visual mental representations, whereas non-dyslexics use abstract verbal strategies. This research presents converging evidence from experimental and individual differences perspectives. In Experiment 1, dyslexic and non-dyslexic participants were similarly accurate on reasoning problems, but scores on a measure of visual memory ability only predicted reasoning accuracy for dyslexics. In Experiment 2, a secondary task loaded visual memory resources during concurrent reasoning. Dyslexics were significantly less accurate when reasoning under conditions of high memory load and showed reduced ability to subsequently recall the visual stimuli, suggesting that the memory and reasoning tasks were competing for the same visual cognitive resource. The results are consistent with an explanation based on limitations in the verbal and executive components of working memory in dyslexia and the use of compensatory visual strategies for reasoning. There are implications for cognitive activities that do not readily support visual thinking, whether in education, employment or less formal everyday settings.

  8. Visual modulation of auditory responses in the owl inferior colliculus.

    PubMed

    Bergan, Joseph F; Knudsen, Eric I

    2009-06-01

    The barn owl's central auditory system creates a map of auditory space in the external nucleus of the inferior colliculus (ICX). Although the crucial role visual experience plays in the formation and maintenance of this auditory space map is well established, the mechanism by which vision influences ICX responses remains unclear. Surprisingly, previous experiments have found that in the absence of extensive pharmacological manipulation, visual stimuli do not drive neural responses in the ICX. Here we investigated the influence of dynamic visual stimuli on auditory responses in the ICX. We show that a salient visual stimulus, when coincident with an auditory stimulus, can modulate auditory responses in the ICX even though the same visual stimulus may elicit no neural responses when presented alone. For each ICX neuron, the most effective auditory and visual stimuli were located in the same region of space. In addition, the magnitude of the visual modulation of auditory responses was dependent on the context of the stimulus presentation with novel visual stimuli eliciting consistently larger response modulations than frequently presented visual stimuli. Thus the visual modulation of ICX responses is dependent on the characteristics of the visual stimulus as well as on the spatial and temporal correspondence of the auditory and visual stimuli. These results demonstrate moment-to-moment visual enhancements of auditory responsiveness that, in the short-term, increase auditory responses to salient bimodal stimuli and in the long-term could serve to instruct the adaptive auditory plasticity necessary to maintain accurate auditory orienting behavior. PMID:19321633

  9. Metacognition and abstract reasoning.

    PubMed

    Markovits, Henry; Thompson, Valerie A; Brisson, Janie

    2015-05-01

    The nature of people's meta-representations of deductive reasoning is critical to understanding how people control their own reasoning processes. We conducted two studies to examine whether people have a metacognitive representation of abstract validity and whether familiarity alone acts as a separate metacognitive cue. In Study 1, participants were asked to make a series of (1) abstract conditional inferences, (2) concrete conditional inferences with premises having many potential alternative antecedents and thus specifically conducive to the production of responses consistent with conditional logic, or (3) concrete problems with premises having relatively few potential alternative antecedents. Participants gave confidence ratings after each inference. Results show that confidence ratings were positively correlated with logical performance on abstract problems and concrete problems with many potential alternatives, but not with concrete problems with content less conducive to normative responses. Confidence ratings were higher with few alternatives than for abstract content. Study 2 used a generation of contrary-to-fact alternatives task to improve levels of abstract logical performance. The resulting increase in logical performance was mirrored by increases in mean confidence ratings. Results provide evidence for a metacognitive representation based on logical validity, and show that familiarity acts as a separate metacognitive cue.

  10. Emotion Telepresence: Emotion Augmentation through Affective Haptics and Visual Stimuli

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tsetserukou, D.; Neviarouskaya, A.

    2012-03-01

    The paper focuses on a novel concept of emotional telepresence. The iFeel_IM! system which is in the vanguard of this technology integrates 3D virtual world Second Life, intelligent component for automatic emotion recognition from text messages, and innovative affective haptic interfaces providing additional nonverbal communication channels through simulation of emotional feedback and social touch (physical co-presence). Users can not only exchange messages but also emotionally and physically feel the presence of the communication partner (e.g., family member, friend, or beloved person). The next prototype of the system will include the tablet computer. The user can realize haptic interaction with avatar, and thus influence its mood and emotion of the partner. The finger gesture language will be designed for communication with avatar. This will bring new level of immersion of on-line communication.

  11. Detection and resolution of visual stimuli by turtle photoreceptors

    PubMed Central

    Baylor, D. A.; Hodgkin, A. L.

    1973-01-01

    1. Hyperpolarizing responses up to 30 mV in amplitude were recorded from cones and from certain cells believed to be rods in the isolated retina of the swamp turtle, Pseudemys scripta elegans. 2. The responses evoked by weak flashes of light reach their maximum in 100-140 msec in red-sensitive cones, 140-180 msec in green-sensitive cones, and 300-600 msec in the rod-like cells (20° C). 3. The cone response evoked by weak flashes of light is linearly related to light intensity and obeys the superposition principle in that the response to a very weak step of light is the integral of the response to a very weak flash. 4. On the basis of their spectral sensitivities cones can be divided into three distinct classes, namely red-sensitive cones whose relative quantum sensitivity is maximal at 630 nm, green-sensitive cones with a maximal sensitivity at 550 nm and blue-sensitive cones with a maximum at 460 nm. 5. The difference between the spectral sensitivity of rods with a maximum at about 520 nm and green-sensitive cones (λmax = 550 nm) is consistent with the view that both receptors contain a 5182 retinal pigment as reported by Liebman & Granda, but that light is filtered by an orange oil droplet in green-sensitive cones. 6. The spectral sensitivities of both red- and green-sensitive cones agree well amongst themselves at long wave-lengths but differ markedly in the extent of the reduction at short wave-lengths. This variation is attributed to differences in the extent to which light is filtered through the coloured oil droplets. 7. There is a significant positive correlation between the absolute sensitivity of red- and green-sensitive cones and the reduction in sensitivity at short wave-lengths. This would be explained if a greater fraction of the light passes through the oil droplet in the most sensitive cells. 8. The absolute flash sensitivities of the most sensitive receptors were about 250 μV photon-1 μm2 in red- and green-sensitive cones, 120 μV photon-1 μm2 in blue-sensitive cones, and 1300 μV photon-1 μm2 in rods. 9. If the effective collecting area (which includes factors for absorption etc.) is taken as 10 μm2 in a red-sensitive cone the peak hyperpolarization produced by 1 photon would average 25 μV. 10. Provided that small spots of light are used, individual receptors obey the `univariance principle' and the response produced by light of strength I′, and wave-length λ1 can be matched by a light of strength kI′ and wave-length λ2, where k is the same for all values of I′. 11. A small proportion of cones behave like isolated units in that they have very sharp sensitivity-profiles and obey the univariance principle with respect to the position as well as to the wave-length of light. 12. The majority of red and green cones have more diffuse sensitivity-profiles, sometimes with bumps on the descending limb, and behave as though cones with the same spectral sensitivity were electrically coupled to one another. 13. The relation between the area of illumination and flash sensitivity agreed approximately with that calculated from the spatial profile. PMID:4766219

  12. Matching-to-sample abstract-concept learning by pigeons.

    PubMed

    Bodily, Kent D; Katz, Jeffrey S; Wright, Anthony A

    2008-01-01

    Abstract concepts--rules that transcend training stimuli--have been argued to be unique to some species. Pigeons, a focus of much concept-learning research, were tested for learning a matching-to-sample abstract concept. Five pigeons were trained with three cartoon stimuli. Pigeons pecked a sample 10 times and then chose which of two simultaneously presented comparison stimuli matched the sample. After acquisition, abstract-concept learning was tested by presenting novel cartoons on 12 out of 96 trials for 4 consecutive sessions. A cycle of doubling the training set followed by retraining and novel-testing was repeated eight times, increasing the set size from 3 to 768 items. Transfer performance improved from chance (i.e., no abstract-concept learning) to a level equivalent to baseline performance (>80%) and was similar to an equivalent function for same/different abstract-concept learning. Analyses assessed the possibility that item-specific choice strategies accounted for acquisition and transfer performance. These analyses converged to rule out item-specific strategies at all but the smallest set-sizes (3-24 items). Ruling out these possibilities adds to the evidence that pigeons learned the relational abstract concept of matching-to-sample.

  13. A brain-derived metric for preferred kinetic stimuli.

    PubMed

    Zeki, Semir; Stutters, Jonathan

    2012-02-01

    We here address the question of whether there is any correlation between subjective preference for simple configurations within a specific visual domain such as motion and strength of activity in visual areas in which that domain is emphasized. We prepared several distinctive patterns of dots in motion with various characteristics and asked humans to rate them according to their preference, before and while scanning the activity in their brains with functional magnetic resonance imaging. For simplicity, we restricted ourselves to motion in the fronto-parallel plane. Moving patterns produced activity in areas V1, V2, the V3 complex (V3, V3A, V3B) and V5, but only in areas V5, V3A/B and parietal cortex did the preferred kinetic patterns produce stronger activity when compared with the non-preferred ones. In addition, preferred patterns produced activity within field A1 of medial orbito-frontal cortex (mOFC), which is not otherwise activated by kinetic stimuli. Hence, for these areas, stronger neural activity correlated with subjective preference. We conclude that configurations of kinetic stimuli that are subjectively preferred correlate with stronger activity within early visual areas and within mOFC. This opens up the possibility of more detailed studies to relate subjective preferences to strength of activity in early visual areas and to relate activity in them to areas whose activity correlates with the subjective experience of beauty.

  14. Simplification of olfactory stimuli in pseudo-gustatory displays.

    PubMed

    Narumi, Takuji; Miyaura, Masaaki; Tanikawa, Tomohiro; Hirose, Michitaka

    2014-04-01

    In this paper, we propose a technique that simplifies pseudo-gustatory systems by using the cross-modal effect between vision and olfaction to change only the visual and olfactory stimuli without altering the ingredients of the food. Conventional pseudo-gustatory simulations require one olfactory stimulus for each flavor. In contrast, we hypothesize that the cross-modal effect between vision and olfaction in a pseudo-gustatory presentation can be utilized to reduce the required number of olfactory stimuli, and verify this hypothesis using a pseudo-gustatory display with our proposed method. This pseudo-gustatory display uses the visual-olfactory cross-modal effect and the key scent components decided on the basis of similarity analysis of olfactory perception. We also investigate how users perceive the taste of a drink under various visual and olfactory conditions, both with and without the visual-olfactory interactions. Our results indicate that the cross-modal effect between vision and olfaction can effectively simplify pseudo-gustatory simulations.

  15. Abstracting and indexing guide

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    U.S. Department of the Interior; Office of Water Resources Research

    1974-01-01

    These instructions have been prepared for those who abstract and index scientific and technical documents for the Water Resources Scientific Information Center (WRSIC). With the recent publication growth in all fields, information centers have undertaken the task of keeping the various scientific communities aware of current and past developments. An abstract with carefully selected index terms offers the user of WRSIC services a more rapid means for deciding whether a document is pertinent to his needs and professional interests, thus saving him the time necessary to scan the complete work. These means also provide WRSIC with a document representation or surrogate which is more easily stored and manipulated to produce various services. Authors are asked to accept the responsibility for preparing abstracts of their own papers to facilitate quick evaluation, announcement, and dissemination to the scientific community.

  16. Thyra Abstract Interface Package

    2005-09-01

    Thrya primarily defines a set of abstract C++ class interfaces needed for the development of abstract numerical atgorithms (ANAs) such as iterative linear solvers, transient solvers all the way up to optimization. At the foundation of these interfaces are abstract C++ classes for vectors, vector spaces, linear operators and multi-vectors. Also included in the Thyra package is C++ code for creating concrete vector, vector space, linear operator, and multi-vector subclasses as well as other utilitiesmore » to aid in the development of ANAs. Currently, very general and efficient concrete subclass implementations exist for serial and SPMD in-core vectors and multi-vectors. Code also currently exists for testing objects and providing composite objects such as product vectors.« less

  17. Interpretative bias in spider phobia: Perception and information processing of ambiguous schematic stimuli.

    PubMed

    Haberkamp, Anke; Schmidt, Filipp

    2015-09-01

    This study investigates the interpretative bias in spider phobia with respect to rapid visuomotor processing. We compared perception, evaluation, and visuomotor processing of ambiguous schematic stimuli between spider-fearful and control participants. Stimuli were produced by gradually morphing schematic flowers into spiders. Participants rated these stimuli related to their perceptual appearance and to their feelings of valence, disgust, and arousal. Also, they responded to the same stimuli within a response priming paradigm that measures rapid motor activation. Spider-fearful individuals showed an interpretative bias (i.e., ambiguous stimuli were perceived as more similar to spiders) and rated spider-like stimuli as more unpleasant, disgusting, and arousing. However, we observed no differences between spider-fearful and control participants in priming effects for ambiguous stimuli. For non-ambiguous stimuli, we observed a similar enhancement for phobic pictures as has been reported previously for natural images. We discuss our findings with respect to the visual representation of morphed stimuli and to perceptual learning processes.

  18. Perceptual Load Alters Visual Excitability

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Carmel, David; Thorne, Jeremy D.; Rees, Geraint; Lavie, Nilli

    2011-01-01

    Increasing perceptual load reduces the processing of visual stimuli outside the focus of attention, but the mechanism underlying these effects remains unclear. Here we tested an account attributing the effects of perceptual load to modulations of visual cortex excitability. In contrast to stimulus competition accounts, which propose that load…

  19. Annual Conference Abstracts

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Engineering Education, 1976

    1976-01-01

    Presents the abstracts of 158 papers presented at the American Society for Engineering Education's annual conference at Knoxville, Tennessee, June 14-17, 1976. Included are engineering topics covering education, aerospace, agriculture, biomedicine, chemistry, computers, electricity, acoustics, environment, mechanics, and women. (SL)

  20. Seismic Consequence Abstraction

    SciTech Connect

    M. Gross

    2004-10-25

    The primary purpose of this model report is to develop abstractions for the response of engineered barrier system (EBS) components to seismic hazards at a geologic repository at Yucca Mountain, Nevada, and to define the methodology for using these abstractions in a seismic scenario class for the Total System Performance Assessment - License Application (TSPA-LA). A secondary purpose of this model report is to provide information for criticality studies related to seismic hazards. The seismic hazards addressed herein are vibratory ground motion, fault displacement, and rockfall due to ground motion. The EBS components are the drip shield, the waste package, and the fuel cladding. The requirements for development of the abstractions and the associated algorithms for the seismic scenario class are defined in ''Technical Work Plan For: Regulatory Integration Modeling of Drift Degradation, Waste Package and Drip Shield Vibratory Motion and Seismic Consequences'' (BSC 2004 [DIRS 171520]). The development of these abstractions will provide a more complete representation of flow into and transport from the EBS under disruptive events. The results from this development will also address portions of integrated subissue ENG2, Mechanical Disruption of Engineered Barriers, including the acceptance criteria for this subissue defined in Section 2.2.1.3.2.3 of the ''Yucca Mountain Review Plan, Final Report'' (NRC 2003 [DIRS 163274]).

  1. Abstraction through Game Play

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Avraamidou, Antri; Monaghan, John; Walker, Aisha

    2012-01-01

    This paper examines the computer game play of an 11-year-old boy. In the course of building a virtual house he developed and used, without assistance, an artefact and an accompanying strategy to ensure that his house was symmetric. We argue that the creation and use of this artefact-strategy is a mathematical abstraction. The discussion…

  2. Making the Abstract Concrete

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Potter, Lee Ann

    2005-01-01

    President Ronald Reagan nominated a woman to serve on the United States Supreme Court. He did so through a single-page form letter, completed in part by hand and in part by typewriter, announcing Sandra Day O'Connor as his nominee. While the document serves as evidence of a historic event, it is also a tangible illustration of abstract concepts…

  3. Annual Conference Abstracts

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Journal of Engineering Education, 1972

    1972-01-01

    Includes abstracts of papers presented at the 80th Annual Conference of the American Society for Engineering Education. The broad areas include aerospace, affiliate and associate member council, agricultural engineering, biomedical engineering, continuing engineering studies, chemical engineering, civil engineering, computers, cooperative…

  4. Computers in Abstract Algebra

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nwabueze, Kenneth K.

    2004-01-01

    The current emphasis on flexible modes of mathematics delivery involving new information and communication technology (ICT) at the university level is perhaps a reaction to the recent change in the objectives of education. Abstract algebra seems to be one area of mathematics virtually crying out for computer instructional support because of the…

  5. 2002 NASPSA Conference Abstracts.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Journal of Sport & Exercise Psychology, 2002

    2002-01-01

    Contains abstracts from the 2002 conference of the North American Society for the Psychology of Sport and Physical Activity. The publication is divided into three sections: the preconference workshop, "Effective Teaching Methods in the Classroom;" symposia (motor development, motor learning and control, and sport psychology); and free…

  6. Abstracts of SIG Sessions.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Proceedings of the ASIS Annual Meeting, 1995

    1995-01-01

    Presents abstracts of 15 special interest group (SIG) sessions. Topics include navigation and information utilization in the Internet, natural language processing, automatic indexing, image indexing, classification, users' models of database searching, online public access catalogs, education for information professions, information services,…

  7. Leadership Abstracts, 2002.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wilson, Cynthia, Ed.; Milliron, Mark David, Ed.

    2002-01-01

    This 2002 volume of Leadership Abstracts contains issue numbers 1-12. Articles include: (1) "Skills Certification and Workforce Development: Partnering with Industry and Ourselves," by Jeffrey A. Cantor; (2) "Starting Again: The Brookhaven Success College," by Alice W. Villadsen; (3) "From Digital Divide to Digital Democracy," by Gerardo E. de los…

  8. Water reuse. [Lead abstract

    SciTech Connect

    Middlebrooks, E.J.

    1982-01-01

    Separate abstracts were prepared for the 31 chapters of this book which deals with all aspects of wastewater reuse. Design data, case histories, performance data, monitoring information, health information, social implications, legal and organizational structures, and background information needed to analyze the desirability of water reuse are presented. (KRM)

  9. Abstract Film and Beyond.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Le Grice, Malcolm

    A theoretical and historical account of the main preoccupations of makers of abstract films is presented in this book. The book's scope includes discussion of nonrepresentational forms as well as examination of experiments in the manipulation of time in films. The ten chapters discuss the following topics: art and cinematography, the first…

  10. Agnosia for mirror stimuli: a new case report with a small parietal lesion.

    PubMed

    Martinaud, Olivier; Mirlink, Nicolas; Bioux, Sandrine; Bliaux, Evangéline; Lebas, Axel; Gerardin, Emmanuel; Hannequin, Didier

    2014-11-01

    Only seven cases of agnosia for mirror stimuli have been reported, always with an extensive lesion. We report a new case of an agnosia for mirror stimuli due to a circumscribed lesion. An extensive battery of neuropsychological tests and a new experimental procedure to assess visual object mirror and orientation discrimination were assessed 10 days after the onset of clinical symptoms, and 5 years later. The performances of our patient were compared with those of four healthy control subjects matched for age. This test revealed an agnosia for mirror stimuli. Brain imaging showed a small right occipitoparietal hematoma, encompassing the extrastriate cortex adjoining the inferior parietal lobe. This new case suggests that: (i) agnosia for mirror stimuli can persist for 5 years after onset and (ii) the posterior part of the right intraparietal sulcus could be critical in the cognitive process of mirror stimuli discrimination.

  11. Adopting Abstract Images for Semantic Scene Understanding.

    PubMed

    Zitnick, C Lawrence; Vedantam, Ramakrishna; Parikh, Devi

    2016-04-01

    Relating visual information to its linguistic semantic meaning remains an open and challenging area of research. The semantic meaning of images depends on the presence of objects, their attributes and their relations to other objects. But precisely characterizing this dependence requires extracting complex visual information from an image, which is in general a difficult and yet unsolved problem. In this paper, we propose studying semantic information in abstract images created from collections of clip art. Abstract images provide several advantages over real images. They allow for the direct study of how to infer high-level semantic information, since they remove the reliance on noisy low-level object, attribute and relation detectors, or the tedious hand-labeling of real images. Importantly, abstract images also allow the ability to generate sets of semantically similar scenes. Finding analogous sets of real images that are semantically similar would be nearly impossible. We create 1,002 sets of 10 semantically similar abstract images with corresponding written descriptions. We thoroughly analyze this dataset to discover semantically important features, the relations of words to visual features and methods for measuring semantic similarity. Finally, we study the relation between the saliency and memorability of objects and their semantic importance.

  12. Joint attention for stimuli on the hands: ownership matters

    PubMed Central

    Taylor, J. E. T.; Pratt, Jay; Witt, Jessica K.

    2015-01-01

    The visual system treats the space near the hands with unique, action-related priorities. For example, attention orients slowly to stimuli on the hands (Taylor and Witt, 2014). In this article, we asked whether jointly attended hands are attended in the same way. Specifically, we examined whether ownership over the hand mattered: do we attend to our hands and the hands of others in the same way? Pairs of participants performed a spatial cueing task with stimuli that could be projected onto one partner’s hands or on a control surface. Results show delayed orienting of attention to targets appearing on the hands, but only for the owner of the hands. For an observer, others’ hands are like any other surface. This result emphasizes the importance of ownership for hand-based effects on vision, and in doing so, is inconsistent with some expectations of the joint action literature. PMID:25983713

  13. An Abstract Data Interface

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Allan, D. J.

    The Abstract Data Interface (ADI) is a system within which both abstract data models and their mappings on to file formats can be defined. The data model system is object-oriented and closely follows the Common Lisp Object System (CLOS) object model. Programming interfaces in both C and \\fortran are supplied, and are designed to be simple enough for use by users with limited software skills. The prototype system supports access to those FITS formats most commonly used in the X-ray community, as well as the Starlink NDF data format. New interfaces can be rapidly added to the system---these may communicate directly with the file system, other ADI objects or elsewhere (e.g., a network connection).

  14. Meeting Abstracts - Nexus 2015.

    PubMed

    2015-10-01

    The AMCP Abstracts program provides a forum through which authors can share their insights and outcomes of advanced managed care practice through publication in AMCP's Journal of Managed Care Specialty Pharmacy (JMCP). Of the abstracts accepted for publication, most are presented as posters, so interested AMCP meeting attendees can review findings and query authors. The main poster presentation is Tuesday, October 27, 2015; posters are also displayed on Wednesday, October 28, 2015. The AMCP Nexus 2015 in Orlando, Florida, is expected to attract more than 3,500 managed care pharmacists and other health care professionals who manage and evaluate drug therapies, develop and manage networks, and work with medical managers and information specialists to improve the care of all individuals enrolled in managed care programs.  Abstracts were submitted in the following categories:  Research Report: describe completed original research on managed care pharmacy services or health care interventions. Examples include (but are not limited to) observational studies using administrative claims, reports of the impact of unique benefit design strategies, and analyses of the effects of innovative administrative or clinical programs.Economic Model: describe models that predict the effect of various benefit design or clinical decisions on a population. For example, an economic model could be used to predict the budget impact of a new pharmaceutical product on a health care system. Solving Problems in Managed Care: describe the specific steps taken to introduce a needed change, develop and implement a new system or program, plan and organize an administrative function, or solve other types of problems in managed care settings. These abstracts describe a course of events; they do not test a hypothesis, but they may include data.

  15. Generalized Abstract Symbolic Summaries

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Person, Suzette; Dwyer, Matthew B.

    2009-01-01

    Current techniques for validating and verifying program changes often consider the entire program, even for small changes, leading to enormous V&V costs over a program s lifetime. This is due, in large part, to the use of syntactic program techniques which are necessarily imprecise. Building on recent advances in symbolic execution of heap manipulating programs, in this paper, we develop techniques for performing abstract semantic differencing of program behaviors that offer the potential for improved precision.

  16. Lack of sleep affects the evaluation of emotional stimuli.

    PubMed

    Tempesta, Daniela; Couyoumdjian, Alessandro; Curcio, Giuseppe; Moroni, Fabio; Marzano, Cristina; De Gennaro, Luigi; Ferrara, Michele

    2010-04-29

    Sleep deprivation (SD) negatively affects various cognitive performances, but surprisingly evidence about a specific impact of sleep loss on subjective evaluation of emotional stimuli remains sparse. In the present study, we assessed the effect of SD on the emotional rating of standardized visual stimuli selected from the International Affective Picture System. Forty university students were assigned to the sleep group (n=20), tested before and after one night of undisturbed sleep at home, or to the deprivation group, tested before and after one night of total SD. One-hundred and eighty pictures (90 test, 90 retest) were selected and categorized as pleasant, neutral and unpleasant. Participants were asked to judge their emotional reactions while viewing pictures by means of the Self-Assessment Manikin. Subjective mood ratings were also obtained by means of Visual Analog Scales. No significant effect of SD was observed on the evaluation of pleasant and unpleasant stimuli. On the contrary, SD subjects perceived the neutral pictures more negatively and showed an increase of negative mood and a decrease of subjective alertness compared to non-deprived subjects. Finally, an analysis of covariance on mean valence ratings of neutral pictures using negative mood as covariate confirmed the effect of SD. Our results indicate that sleep is involved in regulating emotional evaluation. The emotional labeling of neutral stimuli biased toward negative responses was not mediated by the increase of negative mood. This effect can be interpreted as an adaptive reaction supporting the "better safe than sorry" principle. It may also have applied implications for healthcare workers, military and law-enforcement personnel.

  17. Lack of sleep affects the evaluation of emotional stimuli.

    PubMed

    Tempesta, Daniela; Couyoumdjian, Alessandro; Curcio, Giuseppe; Moroni, Fabio; Marzano, Cristina; De Gennaro, Luigi; Ferrara, Michele

    2010-04-29

    Sleep deprivation (SD) negatively affects various cognitive performances, but surprisingly evidence about a specific impact of sleep loss on subjective evaluation of emotional stimuli remains sparse. In the present study, we assessed the effect of SD on the emotional rating of standardized visual stimuli selected from the International Affective Picture System. Forty university students were assigned to the sleep group (n=20), tested before and after one night of undisturbed sleep at home, or to the deprivation group, tested before and after one night of total SD. One-hundred and eighty pictures (90 test, 90 retest) were selected and categorized as pleasant, neutral and unpleasant. Participants were asked to judge their emotional reactions while viewing pictures by means of the Self-Assessment Manikin. Subjective mood ratings were also obtained by means of Visual Analog Scales. No significant effect of SD was observed on the evaluation of pleasant and unpleasant stimuli. On the contrary, SD subjects perceived the neutral pictures more negatively and showed an increase of negative mood and a decrease of subjective alertness compared to non-deprived subjects. Finally, an analysis of covariance on mean valence ratings of neutral pictures using negative mood as covariate confirmed the effect of SD. Our results indicate that sleep is involved in regulating emotional evaluation. The emotional labeling of neutral stimuli biased toward negative responses was not mediated by the increase of negative mood. This effect can be interpreted as an adaptive reaction supporting the "better safe than sorry" principle. It may also have applied implications for healthcare workers, military and law-enforcement personnel. PMID:20117179

  18. EBS Radionuclide Transport Abstraction

    SciTech Connect

    J. Prouty

    2006-07-14

    The purpose of this report is to develop and analyze the engineered barrier system (EBS) radionuclide transport abstraction model, consistent with Level I and Level II model validation, as identified in Technical Work Plan for: Near-Field Environment and Transport: Engineered Barrier System: Radionuclide Transport Abstraction Model Report Integration (BSC 2005 [DIRS 173617]). The EBS radionuclide transport abstraction (or EBS RT Abstraction) is the conceptual model used in the total system performance assessment (TSPA) to determine the rate of radionuclide releases from the EBS to the unsaturated zone (UZ). The EBS RT Abstraction conceptual model consists of two main components: a flow model and a transport model. Both models are developed mathematically from first principles in order to show explicitly what assumptions, simplifications, and approximations are incorporated into the models used in the TSPA. The flow model defines the pathways for water flow in the EBS and specifies how the flow rate is computed in each pathway. Input to this model includes the seepage flux into a drift. The seepage flux is potentially split by the drip shield, with some (or all) of the flux being diverted by the drip shield and some passing through breaches in the drip shield that might result from corrosion or seismic damage. The flux through drip shield breaches is potentially split by the waste package, with some (or all) of the flux being diverted by the waste package and some passing through waste package breaches that might result from corrosion or seismic damage. Neither the drip shield nor the waste package survives an igneous intrusion, so the flux splitting submodel is not used in the igneous scenario class. The flow model is validated in an independent model validation technical review. The drip shield and waste package flux splitting algorithms are developed and validated using experimental data. The transport model considers advective transport and diffusive transport

  19. Traveling waves in visual cortex.

    PubMed

    Sato, Tatsuo K; Nauhaus, Ian; Carandini, Matteo

    2012-07-26

    Electrode recordings and imaging studies have revealed that localized visual stimuli elicit waves of activity that travel across primary visual cortex. Traveling waves are present also during spontaneous activity, but they can be greatly reduced by widespread and intensive visual stimulation. In this Review, we summarize the evidence in favor of these traveling waves. We suggest that their substrate may lie in long-range horizontal connections and that their functional role may involve the integration of information over large regions of space.

  20. Preschool-Age Children and Adults Flexibly Shift Their Preferences for Auditory versus Visual Modalities but Do Not Exhibit Auditory Dominance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Noles, Nicholaus S.; Gelman, Susan A.

    2012-01-01

    The goal of this study was to evaluate the claim that young children display preferences for auditory stimuli over visual stimuli. This study was motivated by concerns that the visual stimuli employed in prior studies were considerably more complex and less distinctive than the competing auditory stimuli, resulting in an illusory preference for…

  1. Startle auditory stimuli enhance the performance of fast dynamic contractions.

    PubMed

    Fernandez-Del-Olmo, Miguel; Río-Rodríguez, Dan; Iglesias-Soler, Eliseo; Acero, Rafael M

    2014-01-01

    Fast reaction times and the ability to develop a high rate of force development (RFD) are crucial for sports performance. However, little is known regarding the relationship between these parameters. The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of auditory stimuli of different intensities on the performance of a concentric bench-press exercise. Concentric bench-presses were performed by thirteen trained subjects in response to three different conditions: a visual stimulus (VS); a visual stimulus accompanied by a non-startle auditory stimulus (AS); and a visual stimulus accompanied by a startle auditory stimulus (SS). Peak RFD, peak velocity, onset movement, movement duration and electromyography from pectoralis and tricep muscles were recorded. The SS condition induced an increase in the RFD and peak velocity and a reduction in the movement onset and duration, in comparison with the VS and AS condition. The onset activation of the pectoralis and tricep muscles was shorter for the SS than for the VS and AS conditions. These findings point out to specific enhancement effects of loud auditory stimulation on the rate of force development. This is of relevance since startle stimuli could be used to explore neural adaptations to resistance training.

  2. Startle Auditory Stimuli Enhance the Performance of Fast Dynamic Contractions

    PubMed Central

    Fernandez-Del-Olmo, Miguel; Río-Rodríguez, Dan; Iglesias-Soler, Eliseo; Acero, Rafael M.

    2014-01-01

    Fast reaction times and the ability to develop a high rate of force development (RFD) are crucial for sports performance. However, little is known regarding the relationship between these parameters. The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of auditory stimuli of different intensities on the performance of a concentric bench-press exercise. Concentric bench-presses were performed by thirteen trained subjects in response to three different conditions: a visual stimulus (VS); a visual stimulus accompanied by a non-startle auditory stimulus (AS); and a visual stimulus accompanied by a startle auditory stimulus (SS). Peak RFD, peak velocity, onset movement, movement duration and electromyography from pectoralis and tricep muscles were recorded. The SS condition induced an increase in the RFD and peak velocity and a reduction in the movement onset and duration, in comparison with the VS and AS condition. The onset activation of the pectoralis and tricep muscles was shorter for the SS than for the VS and AS conditions. These findings point out to specific enhancement effects of loud auditory stimulation on the rate of force development. This is of relevance since startle stimuli could be used to explore neural adaptations to resistance training. PMID:24489967

  3. Fear selectively modulates visual mental imagery and visual perception.

    PubMed

    Borst, Grégoire; Kosslyn, Stephen M

    2010-05-01

    Emotions have been shown to modulate low-level visual processing of simple stimuli. In this study, we investigate whether emotions only modulate processing of visual representations created from direct visual inputs or whether they also modulate representations that underlie visual mental images. Our results demonstrate that when participants visualize or look at the global shape of written words (low-spatial-frequency visual information), the prior brief presentation of fearful faces enhances processing, whereas when participants visualize or look at details of written words (high-spatial-frequency visual information), the prior brief presentation of fearful faces impairs processing. This study demonstrates that emotions have similar effects on low-level processing of visual percepts and of internal representations created on the basis of information stored in long-term memory. PMID:20182955

  4. Opposite effects of visual and auditory word-likeness on activity in the visual word form area

    PubMed Central

    Ludersdorfer, Philipp; Schurz, Matthias; Richlan, Fabio; Kronbichler, Martin; Wimmer, Heinz

    2013-01-01

    The present fMRI study investigated the effects of word-likeness of visual and auditory stimuli on activity along the ventral visual stream. In the context of a one-back task, we presented visual and auditory words, pseudowords, and artificial stimuli (i.e., false-fonts and reversed-speech, respectively). Main findings were regionally specific effects of word-likeness on activation in a left ventral occipitotemporal region corresponding to the classic localization of the Visual Word Form Area (VWFA). Specifically, we found an inverse word-likeness effect for the visual stimuli in the form of decreased activation for words compared to pseudowords which, in turn, elicited decreased activation compared to the artificial stimuli. For the auditory stimuli, we found positive word-likeness effects as both words and pseudowords elicited more activation than the artificial stimuli. This resulted from a marked deactivation in response to the artificial stimuli and no such deactivation for words and pseudowords. We suggest that the opposite effects of visual and auditory word-likeness on VWFA activation can be explained by assuming the involvement of visual orthographic memory representations. For the visual stimuli, these representations reduce the coding effort as a function of word-likeness. This results in highest activation to the artificial stimuli and least activation to words for which corresponding representations exist. The positive auditory word-likeness effects may result from activation of orthographic information associated with the auditory words and pseudowords. The view that the VWFA has a primarily visual function is supported by our findings of high activation to the visual artificial stimuli (which have no phonological or semantic associations) and deactivation to the auditory artificial stimuli. According to the phenomenon of cross-modal sensory suppression such deactivations during demanding auditory processing are expected in visual regions. PMID

  5. Attentional bias for positive emotional stimuli: A meta-analytic investigation.

    PubMed

    Pool, Eva; Brosch, Tobias; Delplanque, Sylvain; Sander, David

    2016-01-01

    Despite an initial focus on negative threatening stimuli, researchers have more recently expanded the investigation of attentional biases toward positive rewarding stimuli. The present meta-analysis systematically compared attentional bias for positive compared with neutral visual stimuli across 243 studies (N = 9,120 healthy participants) that used different types of attentional paradigms and positive stimuli. Factors were tested that, as postulated by several attentional models derived from theories of emotion, might modulate this bias. Overall, results showed a significant, albeit modest (Hedges' g = .258), attentional bias for positive as compared with neutral stimuli. Moderator analyses revealed that the magnitude of this attentional bias varied as a function of arousal and that this bias was significantly larger when the emotional stimulus was relevant to specific concerns (e.g., hunger) of the participants compared with other positive stimuli that were less relevant to the participants' concerns. Moreover, the moderator analyses showed that attentional bias for positive stimuli was larger in paradigms that measure early, rather than late, attentional processing, suggesting that attentional bias for positive stimuli occurs rapidly and involuntarily. Implications for theories of emotion and attention are discussed.

  6. Beyond the classical receptive field: The effect of contextual stimuli.

    PubMed

    Spillmann, Lothar; Dresp-Langley, Birgitta; Tseng, Chia-Huei

    2015-01-01

    Following the pioneering studies of the receptive field (RF), the RF concept gained further significance for visual perception by the discovery of input effects from beyond the classical RF. These studies demonstrated that neuronal responses could be modulated by stimuli outside their RFs, consistent with the perception of induced brightness, color, orientation, and motion. Lesion scotomata are similarly modulated perceptually from the surround by RFs that have migrated from the interior to the outer edge of the scotoma and in this way provide filling-in of the void. Large RFs are advantageous to this task. In higher visual areas, such as the middle temporal and inferotemporal lobe, RFs increase in size and lose most of their retinotopic organization while encoding increasingly complex features. Whereas lower-level RFs mediate perceptual filling-in, contour integration, and figure-ground segregation, RFs at higher levels serve the perception of grouping by common fate, biological motion, and other biologically relevant stimuli, such as faces. Studies in alert monkeys while freely viewing natural scenes showed that classical and nonclassical RFs cooperate in forming representations of the visual world. Today, our understanding of the mechanisms underlying the RF is undergoing a quantum leap. What had started out as a hierarchical feed-forward concept for simple stimuli, such as spots, lines, and bars, now refers to mechanisms involving ascending, descending, and lateral signal flow. By extension of the bottom-up paradigm, RFs are nowadays understood as adaptive processors, enabling the predictive coding of complex scenes. Top-down effects guiding attention and tuned to task-relevant information complement the bottom-up analysis. PMID:26200888

  7. Cardiorespiratory interactions to external stimuli.

    PubMed

    Bernardi, L; Porta, C; Spicuzza, L; Sleight, P

    2005-09-01

    Respiration is a powerful modulator of heart rate variability, and of baro- or chemo-reflex sensitivity. This occurs via a mechanical effect of breathing that synchronizes all cardiovascular variables at the respiratory rhythm, particularly when this occurs at a particular slow rate coincident with the Mayer waves in arterial pressure (approximately 6 cycles/min). Recitation of the rosary prayer (or of most mantras), induces a marked enhancement of these slow rhythms, whereas random verbalization or random breathing does not. This phenomenon in turn increases baroreflex sensitivity and reduces chemoreflex sensitivity, leading to increases in parasympathetic and reductions in sympathetic activity. The opposite can be seen during either verbalization or mental stress tests. Qualitatively similar effects can be obtained even by passive listening to more or less rhythmic auditory stimuli, such as music, and the speed of the rhythm (rather than the style) appears to be one of the main determinants of the cardiovascular and respiratory responses. These findings have clinical relevance. Appropriate modulation of breathing, can improve/restore autonomic control of cardiovascular and respiratory systems in relevant diseases such as hypertension and heart failure, and might therefore help improving exercise tolerance, quality of life, and ultimately, survival.

  8. Visual attention mediated by biased competition in extrastriate visual cortex.

    PubMed Central

    Desimone, R

    1998-01-01

    According to conventional neurobiological accounts of visual attention, attention serves to enhance extrastriate neuronal responses to a stimulus at one spatial location in the visual field. However, recent results from recordings in extrastriate cortex of monkeys suggest that any enhancing effect of attention is best understood in the context of competitive interactions among neurons representing all of the stimuli present in the visual field. These interactions can be biased in favour of behaviourally relevant stimuli as a result of many different processes, both spatial and non-spatial, and both bottom-up and top-down. The resolution of this competition results in the suppression of the neuronal representations of behaviourally irrelevant stimuli in extrastriate cortex. A main source of top-down influence may derive from neuronal systems underlying working memory. PMID:9770219

  9. EBS Radionuclide Transport Abstraction

    SciTech Connect

    J.D. Schreiber

    2005-08-25

    The purpose of this report is to develop and analyze the engineered barrier system (EBS) radionuclide transport abstraction model, consistent with Level I and Level II model validation, as identified in ''Technical Work Plan for: Near-Field Environment and Transport: Engineered Barrier System: Radionuclide Transport Abstraction Model Report Integration'' (BSC 2005 [DIRS 173617]). The EBS radionuclide transport abstraction (or EBS RT Abstraction) is the conceptual model used in the total system performance assessment for the license application (TSPA-LA) to determine the rate of radionuclide releases from the EBS to the unsaturated zone (UZ). The EBS RT Abstraction conceptual model consists of two main components: a flow model and a transport model. Both models are developed mathematically from first principles in order to show explicitly what assumptions, simplifications, and approximations are incorporated into the models used in the TSPA-LA. The flow model defines the pathways for water flow in the EBS and specifies how the flow rate is computed in each pathway. Input to this model includes the seepage flux into a drift. The seepage flux is potentially split by the drip shield, with some (or all) of the flux being diverted by the drip shield and some passing through breaches in the drip shield that might result from corrosion or seismic damage. The flux through drip shield breaches is potentially split by the waste package, with some (or all) of the flux being diverted by the waste package and some passing through waste package breaches that might result from corrosion or seismic damage. Neither the drip shield nor the waste package survives an igneous intrusion, so the flux splitting submodel is not used in the igneous scenario class. The flow model is validated in an independent model validation technical review. The drip shield and waste package flux splitting algorithms are developed and validated using experimental data. The transport model considers

  10. Dynamic Prototypicality Effects in Visual Search

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kayaert, Greet; Op de Beeck, Hans P.; Wagemans, Johan

    2011-01-01

    In recent studies, researchers have discovered a larger neural activation for stimuli that are more extreme exemplars of their stimulus class, compared with stimuli that are more prototypical. This has been shown for faces as well as for familiar and novel shape classes. We used a visual search task to look for a behavioral correlate of these…

  11. Working Memory Enhances Visual Perception: Evidence from Signal Detection Analysis

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Soto, David; Wriglesworth, Alice; Bahrami-Balani, Alex; Humphreys, Glyn W.

    2010-01-01

    We show that perceptual sensitivity to visual stimuli can be modulated by matches between the contents of working memory (WM) and stimuli in the visual field. Observers were presented with an object cue (to hold in WM or to merely attend) and subsequently had to identify a brief target presented within a colored shape. The cue could be…

  12. Tactile Stimuli Increase Effects of Modality Compatibility in Task Switching.

    PubMed

    Stephan, Denise Nadine; Koch, Iring

    2015-01-01

    Modality compatibility refers to the similarity of stimulus modality and modality of response-related sensory consequences. Previous dual-task studies found increased switch costs for modality incompatible tasks (auditory-manual/visual-vocal) compared to modality compatible tasks (auditory-vocal/visual-manual). The present task-switching study further examined modality compatibility and investigated vibrotactile stimulation as a novel alternative to visual stimulation. Interestingly, a stronger modality compatibility effect on switch costs was revealed for the group with tactile-auditory stimulation compared to the visual-auditory stimulation group. We suggest that the modality compatibility effect is based on crosstalk of central processing codes due to ideomotor "backward" linkages between the anticipated response effects and the stimuli indicating this response. This crosstalk is increased in the tactile-auditory stimulus group compared to the visual-auditory stimulus group due to a higher degree of ideomotor-compatibility in the tactile-manual tasks. Since crosstalk arises between tasks, performance is only affected in task switching and not in single tasks.

  13. Capture of attention to threatening stimuli without perceptual awareness

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Jeffrey Y.; Murray, Scott O.; Boynton, Geoffrey M.

    2009-01-01

    Summary Visual images that convey threatening information can automatically capture attention [1-4]. One example is an object looming in the direction of the observer—presumably because such a stimulus signals an impending collision [5]. A critical question for understanding the relationship between attention and conscious awareness is whether awareness is required for this type of prioritized attentional selection [6]. Although it has been suggested that visual spatial attention can only be affected by consciously perceived events [7], we show that automatic allocation of attention can occur even without conscious awareness of impending threat. We used a visual search task to show that a looming stimulus on a collision path with an observer captures attention but a looming stimulus on a near-miss path does not. Critically, observers were unaware of any difference between collision and near-miss stimuli even when explicitly asked to discriminate between them in separate experiments. These results counter traditional salience-based models of attentional capture, demonstrating that in the absence of perceptual awareness, the visual system can extract behaviorally relevant details from a visual scene and automatically categorize threatening versus non-threatening images at a level of precision beyond our conscious perceptual capabilities. PMID:19523828

  14. The effects of attention on the temporal integration of multisensory stimuli

    PubMed Central

    Donohue, Sarah E.; Green, Jessica J.; Woldorff, Marty G.

    2015-01-01

    In unisensory contexts, spatially-focused attention tends to enhance perceptual processing. How attention influences the processing of multisensory stimuli, however, has been of much debate. In some cases, attention has been shown to be important for processes related to the integration of audio-visual stimuli, but in other cases such processes have been reported to occur independently of attention. To address these conflicting results, we performed three experiments to examine how attention interacts with a key facet of multisensory processing: the temporal window of integration (TWI). The first two experiments used a novel cued-spatial-attention version of the bounce/stream illusion, wherein two moving visual stimuli with intersecting paths tend to be perceived as bouncing off rather than streaming through each other when a brief sound occurs near in time. When the task was to report whether the visual stimuli appeared to bounce or stream, attention served to narrow this measure of the TWI and bias perception toward “streaming”. When the participants’ task was to explicitly judge the simultaneity of the sound with the intersection of the moving visual stimuli, however, the results were quite different. Specifically, attention served to mainly widen the TWI, increasing the likelihood of simultaneity perception, while also substantially increasing the simultaneity judgment accuracy when the stimuli were actually physically simultaneous. Finally, in Experiment 3, where the task was to judge the simultaneity of a simple, temporally discrete, flashed visual stimulus and the same brief tone pip, attention had no effect on the measured TWI. These results highlight the flexibility of attention in enhancing multisensory perception and show that the effects of attention on multisensory processing are highly dependent on the task demands and observer goals. PMID:25954167

  15. Serial dependence in visual perception.

    PubMed

    Fischer, Jason; Whitney, David

    2014-05-01

    Visual input often arrives in a noisy and discontinuous stream, owing to head and eye movements, occlusion, lighting changes, and many other factors. Yet the physical world is generally stable; objects and physical characteristics rarely change spontaneously. How then does the human visual system capitalize on continuity in the physical environment over time? We found that visual perception in humans is serially dependent, using both prior and present input to inform perception at the present moment. Using an orientation judgment task, we found that, even when visual input changed randomly over time, perceived orientation was strongly and systematically biased toward recently seen stimuli. Furthermore, the strength of this bias was modulated by attention and tuned to the spatial and temporal proximity of successive stimuli. These results reveal a serial dependence in perception characterized by a spatiotemporally tuned, orientation-selective operator-which we call a continuity field-that may promote visual stability over time.

  16. A LARI Experience (Abstract)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cook, M.

    2015-12-01

    (Abstract only) In 2012, Lowell Observatory launched The Lowell Amateur Research Initiative (LARI) to formally involve amateur astronomers in scientific research by bringing them to the attention of and helping professional astronomers with their astronomical research. One of the LARI projects is the BVRI photometric monitoring of Young Stellar Objects (YSOs), wherein amateurs obtain observations to search for new outburst events and characterize the colour evolution of previously identified outbursters. A summary of the scientific and organizational aspects of this LARI project, including its goals and science motivation, the process for getting involved with the project, a description of the team members, their equipment and methods of collaboration, and an overview of the programme stars, preliminary findings, and lessons learned is presented.

  17. IEEE conference record -- Abstracts

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1994-01-01

    This conference covers the following areas: computational plasma physics; vacuum electronic; basic phenomena in fully ionized plasmas; plasma, electron, and ion sources; environmental/energy issues in plasma science; space plasmas; plasma processing; ball lightning/spherical plasma configurations; plasma processing; fast wave devices; magnetic fusion; basic phenomena in partially ionized plasma; dense plasma focus; plasma diagnostics; basic phenomena in weakly ionized gases; fast opening switches; MHD; fast z-pinches and x-ray lasers; intense ion and electron beams; laser-produced plasmas; microwave plasma interactions; EM and ETH launchers; solid state plasmas and switches; intense beam microwaves; and plasmas for lighting. Separate abstracts were prepared for 416 papers in this conference.

  18. Writing a successful research abstract.

    PubMed

    Bliss, Donna Z

    2012-01-01

    Writing and submitting a research abstract provides timely dissemination of the findings of a study and offers peer input for the subsequent development of a quality manuscript. Acceptance of abstracts is competitive. Understanding the expected content of an abstract, the abstract review process and tips for skillful writing will improve the chance of acceptance.

  19. Non-target adjacent stimuli classification improves performance of classical ERP-based brain computer interface

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ceballos, G. A.; Hernández, L. F.

    2015-04-01

    Objective. The classical ERP-based speller, or P300 Speller, is one of the most commonly used paradigms in the field of Brain Computer Interfaces (BCI). Several alterations to the visual stimuli presentation system have been developed to avoid unfavorable effects elicited by adjacent stimuli. However, there has been little, if any, regard to useful information contained in responses to adjacent stimuli about spatial location of target symbols. This paper aims to demonstrate that combining the classification of non-target adjacent stimuli with standard classification (target versus non-target) significantly improves classical ERP-based speller efficiency. Approach. Four SWLDA classifiers were trained and combined with the standard classifier: the lower row, upper row, right column and left column classifiers. This new feature extraction procedure and the classification method were carried out on three open databases: the UAM P300 database (Universidad Autonoma Metropolitana, Mexico), BCI competition II (dataset IIb) and BCI competition III (dataset II). Main results. The inclusion of the classification of non-target adjacent stimuli improves target classification in the classical row/column paradigm. A gain in mean single trial classification of 9.6% and an overall improvement of 25% in simulated spelling speed was achieved. Significance. We have provided further evidence that the ERPs produced by adjacent stimuli present discriminable features, which could provide additional information about the spatial location of intended symbols. This work promotes the searching of information on the peripheral stimulation responses to improve the performance of emerging visual ERP-based spellers.

  20. Hemispheric specialization in dogs for processing different acoustic stimuli.

    PubMed

    Siniscalchi, Marcello; Quaranta, Angelo; Rogers, Lesley J

    2008-01-01

    Considerable experimental evidence shows that functional cerebral asymmetries are widespread in animals. Activity of the right cerebral hemisphere has been associated with responses to novel stimuli and the expression of intense emotions, such as aggression, escape behaviour and fear. The left hemisphere uses learned patterns and responds to familiar stimuli. Although such lateralization has been studied mainly for visual responses, there is evidence in primates that auditory perception is lateralized and that vocal communication depends on differential processing by the hemispheres. The aim of the present work was to investigate whether dogs use different hemispheres to process different acoustic stimuli by presenting them with playbacks of a thunderstorm and their species-typical vocalizations. The results revealed that dogs usually process their species-typical vocalizations using the left hemisphere and the thunderstorm sounds using the right hemisphere. Nevertheless, conspecific vocalizations are not always processed by the left hemisphere, since the right hemisphere is used for processing vocalizations when they elicit intense emotion, including fear. These findings suggest that the specialisation of the left hemisphere for intraspecific communication is more ancient that previously thought, and so is specialisation of the right hemisphere for intense emotions. PMID:18843371

  1. Hemispheric specialization in dogs for processing different acoustic stimuli.

    PubMed

    Siniscalchi, Marcello; Quaranta, Angelo; Rogers, Lesley J

    2008-01-01

    Considerable experimental evidence shows that functional cerebral asymmetries are widespread in animals. Activity of the right cerebral hemisphere has been associated with responses to novel stimuli and the expression of intense emotions, such as aggression, escape behaviour and fear. The left hemisphere uses learned patterns and responds to familiar stimuli. Although such lateralization has been studied mainly for visual responses, there is evidence in primates that auditory perception is lateralized and that vocal communication depends on differential processing by the hemispheres. The aim of the present work was to investigate whether dogs use different hemispheres to process different acoustic stimuli by presenting them with playbacks of a thunderstorm and their species-typical vocalizations. The results revealed that dogs usually process their species-typical vocalizations using the left hemisphere and the thunderstorm sounds using the right hemisphere. Nevertheless, conspecific vocalizations are not always processed by the left hemisphere, since the right hemisphere is used for processing vocalizations when they elicit intense emotion, including fear. These findings suggest that the specialisation of the left hemisphere for intraspecific communication is more ancient that previously thought, and so is specialisation of the right hemisphere for intense emotions.

  2. Superior abstract-concept learning by Clark's nutcrackers (Nucifraga columbiana)

    PubMed Central

    Magnotti, John F.; Katz, Jeffrey S.; Wright, Anthony A.; Kelly, Debbie M.

    2015-01-01

    The ability to learn abstract relational concepts is fundamental to higher level cognition. In contrast to item-specific concepts (e.g. pictures containing trees versus pictures containing cars), abstract relational concepts are not bound to particular stimulus features, but instead involve the relationship between stimuli and therefore may be extrapolated to novel stimuli. Previous research investigating the same/different abstract concept has suggested that primates might be specially adapted to extract relations among items and would require fewer exemplars of a rule to learn an abstract concept than non-primate species. We assessed abstract-concept learning in an avian species, Clark's nutcracker (Nucifraga columbiana), using a small number of exemplars (eight pairs of the same rule, and 56 pairs of the different rule) identical to that previously used to compare rhesus monkeys, capuchin monkeys and pigeons. Nutcrackers as a group (N = 9) showed more novel stimulus transfer than any previous species tested with this small number of exemplars. Two nutcrackers showed full concept learning and four more showed transfer considerably above chance performance, indicating partial concept learning. These results show that the Clark's nutcracker, a corvid species well known for its amazing feats of spatial memory, learns the same/different abstract concept better than any non-human species (including non-human primates) yet tested on this same task. PMID:25972399

  3. Abstract and concrete categories? Evidences from neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Catricalà, Eleonora; Della Rosa, Pasquale A; Plebani, Valentina; Vigliocco, Gabriella; Cappa, Stefano F

    2014-11-01

    We assessed the performance of patients with a diagnosis of Alzheimer׳s disease (AD) and of the semantic variant of primary progressive aphasia (sv-PPA) in a series of tasks involving both abstract and concrete stimuli, which were controlled for most of the variables that have been shown to affect performance on lexical-semantic tasks. Our aims were to compare the patients׳ performance on abstract and concrete stimuli and to assess category-effects within the abstract and concrete domains. The results showed: (i) a better performance on abstract than concrete concepts in sv-PPA patients. (ii) Category-related effects in the abstract domain, with emotion concepts being preserved in AD and social relations being selectively impaired in sv-PPA. In addition, a living-non living dissociation may be (infrequently) observed in individual AD patients after controlling for an extensive set of potential confounds. Thus, differences between and within the concrete or abstract domain may be present in patients with semantic memory disorders, mirroring the different brain regions involved by the different pathologies.

  4. Superior abstract-concept learning by Clark's nutcrackers (Nucifraga columbiana).

    PubMed

    Magnotti, John F; Katz, Jeffrey S; Wright, Anthony A; Kelly, Debbie M

    2015-05-01

    The ability to learn abstract relational concepts is fundamental to higher level cognition. In contrast to item-specific concepts (e.g. pictures containing trees versus pictures containing cars), abstract relational concepts are not bound to particular stimulus features, but instead involve the relationship between stimuli and therefore may be extrapolated to novel stimuli. Previous research investigating the same/different abstract concept has suggested that primates might be specially adapted to extract relations among items and would require fewer exemplars of a rule to learn an abstract concept than non-primate species. We assessed abstract-concept learning in an avian species, Clark's nutcracker (Nucifraga columbiana), using a small number of exemplars (eight pairs of the same rule, and 56 pairs of the different rule) identical to that previously used to compare rhesus monkeys, capuchin monkeys and pigeons. Nutcrackers as a group (N = 9) showed more novel stimulus transfer than any previous species tested with this small number of exemplars. Two nutcrackers showed full concept learning and four more showed transfer considerably above chance performance, indicating partial concept learning. These results show that the Clark's nutcracker, a corvid species well known for its amazing feats of spatial memory, learns the same/different abstract concept better than any non-human species (including non-human primates) yet tested on this same task.

  5. Converging modalities ground abstract categories: the case of politics.

    PubMed

    Farias, Ana Rita; Garrido, Margarida V; Semin, Gün R

    2013-01-01

    Three studies are reported examining the grounding of abstract concepts across two modalities (visual and auditory) and their symbolic representation. A comparison of the outcomes across these studies reveals that the symbolic representation of political concepts and their visual and auditory modalities is convergent. In other words, the spatial relationships between specific instances of the political categories are highly overlapping across the symbolic, visual and auditory modalities. These findings suggest that abstract categories display redundancy across modal and amodal representations, and are multimodal. PMID:23593360

  6. Auditory and visual spatial impression: Recent studies of three auditoria

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nguyen, Andy; Cabrera, Densil

    2004-10-01

    Auditory spatial impression is widely studied for its contribution to auditorium acoustical quality. By contrast, visual spatial impression in auditoria has received relatively little attention in formal studies. This paper reports results from a series of experiments investigating the auditory and visual spatial impression of concert auditoria. For auditory stimuli, a fragment of an anechoic recording of orchestral music was convolved with calibrated binaural impulse responses, which had been made with the dummy head microphone at a wide range of positions in three auditoria and the sound source on the stage. For visual stimuli, greyscale photographs were used, taken at the same positions in the three auditoria, with a visual target on the stage. Subjective experiments were conducted with auditory stimuli alone, visual stimuli alone, and visual and auditory stimuli combined. In these experiments, subjects rated apparent source width, listener envelopment, intimacy and source distance (auditory stimuli), and spaciousness, envelopment, stage dominance, intimacy and target distance (visual stimuli). Results show target distance to be of primary importance in auditory and visual spatial impression-thereby providing a basis for covariance between some attributes of auditory and visual spatial impression. Nevertheless, some attributes of spatial impression diverge between the senses.

  7. Influence of Visual Echo and Visual Reverberation on Speech Fluency in Stutterers.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Smolka, Elzbieta; Adamczyk, Bogdan

    1992-01-01

    The influence of visual signals (echo and reverberation) on speech fluency in 60 stutterers and nonstutterers was examined. Visual signals were found to exert a corrective influence on the speech of stutterers but less than the influence of acoustic stimuli. Use of visual signals in combination with acoustic and tactile signals is recommended. (DB)

  8. Effective Stimuli for Constructing Reliable Neuron Models

    PubMed Central

    Druckmann, Shaul; Berger, Thomas K.; Schürmann, Felix; Hill, Sean; Markram, Henry; Segev, Idan

    2011-01-01

    The rich dynamical nature of neurons poses major conceptual and technical challenges for unraveling their nonlinear membrane properties. Traditionally, various current waveforms have been injected at the soma to probe neuron dynamics, but the rationale for selecting specific stimuli has never been rigorously justified. The present experimental and theoretical study proposes a novel framework, inspired by learning theory, for objectively selecting the stimuli that best unravel the neuron's dynamics. The efficacy of stimuli is assessed in terms of their ability to constrain the parameter space of biophysically detailed conductance-based models that faithfully replicate the neuron's dynamics as attested by their ability to generalize well to the neuron's response to novel experimental stimuli. We used this framework to evaluate a variety of stimuli in different types of cortical neurons, ages and animals. Despite their simplicity, a set of stimuli consisting of step and ramp current pulses outperforms synaptic-like noisy stimuli in revealing the dynamics of these neurons. The general framework that we propose paves a new way for defining, evaluating and standardizing effective electrical probing of neurons and will thus lay the foundation for a much deeper understanding of the electrical nature of these highly sophisticated and non-linear devices and of the neuronal networks that they compose. PMID:21876663

  9. Environmental Interactions and Epistasis Are Revealed in the Proteomic Responses to Complex Stimuli.

    PubMed

    Samir, Parimal; Rahul; Slaughter, James C; Link, Andrew J

    2015-01-01

    Ultimately, the genotype of a cell and its interaction with the environment determine the cell's biochemical state. While the cell's response to a single stimulus has been studied extensively, a conceptual framework to model the effect of multiple environmental stimuli applied concurrently is not as well developed. In this study, we developed the concepts of environmental interactions and epistasis to explain the responses of the S. cerevisiae proteome to simultaneous environmental stimuli. We hypothesize that, as an abstraction, environmental stimuli can be treated as analogous to genetic elements. This would allow modeling of the effects of multiple stimuli using the concepts and tools developed for studying gene interactions. Mirroring gene interactions, our results show that environmental interactions play a critical role in determining the state of the proteome. We show that individual and complex environmental stimuli behave similarly to genetic elements in regulating the cellular responses to stimuli, including the phenomena of dominance and suppression. Interestingly, we observed that the effect of a stimulus on a protein is dominant over other stimuli if the response to the stimulus involves the protein. Using publicly available transcriptomic data, we find that environmental interactions and epistasis regulate transcriptomic responses as well. PMID:26247773

  10. Automated Supernova Discovery (Abstract)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Post, R. S.

    2015-12-01

    (Abstract only) We are developing a system of robotic telescopes for automatic recognition of Supernovas as well as other transient events in collaboration with the Puckett Supernova Search Team. At the SAS2014 meeting, the discovery program, SNARE, was first described. Since then, it has been continuously improved to handle searches under a wide variety of atmospheric conditions. Currently, two telescopes are used to build a reference library while searching for PSN with a partial library. Since data is taken every night without clouds, we must deal with varying atmospheric and high background illumination from the moon. Software is configured to identify a PSN, reshoot for verification with options to change the run plan to acquire photometric or spectrographic data. The telescopes are 24-inch CDK24, with Alta U230 cameras, one in CA and one in NM. Images and run plans are sent between sites so the CA telescope can search while photometry is done in NM. Our goal is to find bright PSNs with magnitude 17.5 or less which is the limit of our planned spectroscopy. We present results from our first automated PSN discoveries and plans for PSN data acquisition.

  11. Task Attention Facilitates Learning of Task-Irrelevant Stimuli

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Tsung-Ren; Watanabe, Takeo

    2012-01-01

    Attention plays a fundamental role in visual learning and memory. One highly established principle of visual attention is that the harder a central task is, the more attentional resources are used to perform the task and the smaller amount of attention is allocated to peripheral processing because of limited attention capacity. Here we show that this principle holds true in a dual-task setting but not in a paradigm of task-irrelevant perceptual learning. In Experiment 1, eight participants were asked to identify either bright or dim number targets at the screen center and to remember concurrently presented scene backgrounds. Their recognition performances for scenes paired with dim/hard targets were worse than those for scenes paired with bright/easy targets. In Experiment 2, eight participants were asked to identify either bright or dim letter targets at the screen center while a task-irrelevant coherent motion was concurrently presented in the background. After five days of training on letter identification, participants improved their motion sensitivity to the direction paired with hard/dim targets improved but not to the direction paired with easy/bright targets. Taken together, these results suggest that task-irrelevant stimuli are not subject to the attentional control mechanisms that task-relevant stimuli abide. PMID:22563424

  12. Fear conditioning to subliminal fear relevant and non fear relevant stimuli.

    PubMed

    Lipp, Ottmar V; Kempnich, Clare; Jee, Sang Hoon; Arnold, Derek H

    2014-01-01

    A growing body of evidence suggests that conscious visual awareness is not a prerequisite for human fear learning. For instance, humans can learn to be fearful of subliminal fear relevant images--images depicting stimuli thought to have been fear relevant in our evolutionary context, such as snakes, spiders, and angry human faces. Such stimuli could have a privileged status in relation to manipulations used to suppress usually salient images from awareness, possibly due to the existence of a designated sub-cortical 'fear module'. Here we assess this proposition, and find it wanting. We use binocular masking to suppress awareness of images of snakes and wallabies (particularly cute, non-threatening marsupials). We find that subliminal presentations of both classes of image can induce differential fear conditioning. These data show that learning, as indexed by fear conditioning, is neither contingent on conscious visual awareness nor on subliminal conditional stimuli being fear relevant.

  13. Fear conditioning to subliminal fear relevant and non fear relevant stimuli.

    PubMed

    Lipp, Ottmar V; Kempnich, Clare; Jee, Sang Hoon; Arnold, Derek H

    2014-01-01

    A growing body of evidence suggests that conscious visual awareness is not a prerequisite for human fear learning. For instance, humans can learn to be fearful of subliminal fear relevant images--images depicting stimuli thought to have been fear relevant in our evolutionary context, such as snakes, spiders, and angry human faces. Such stimuli could have a privileged status in relation to manipulations used to suppress usually salient images from awareness, possibly due to the existence of a designated sub-cortical 'fear module'. Here we assess this proposition, and find it wanting. We use binocular masking to suppress awareness of images of snakes and wallabies (particularly cute, non-threatening marsupials). We find that subliminal presentations of both classes of image can induce differential fear conditioning. These data show that learning, as indexed by fear conditioning, is neither contingent on conscious visual awareness nor on subliminal conditional stimuli being fear relevant. PMID:25198514

  14. From a Somatotopic to a Spatiotopic Frame of Reference for the Localization of Nociceptive Stimuli

    PubMed Central

    De Paepe, Annick L.; Crombez, Geert; Legrain, Valéry

    2015-01-01

    To react efficiently to potentially threatening stimuli, we have to be able to localize these stimuli in space. In daily life we are constantly moving so that our limbs can be positioned at the opposite side of space. Therefore, a somatotopic frame of reference is insufficient to localize nociceptive stimuli. Here we investigated whether nociceptive stimuli are mapped into a spatiotopic frame of reference, and more specifically a peripersonal frame of reference, which takes into account the position of the body limbs in external space, as well as the occurrence of external objects presented near the body. Two temporal order judgment (TOJ) experiments were conducted, during which participants had to decide which of two nociceptive stimuli, one applied to either hand, had been presented first while their hands were either uncrossed or crossed over the body midline. The occurrence of the nociceptive stimuli was cued by uninformative visual cues. We found that the visual cues prioritized the perception of nociceptive stimuli applied to the hand laying in the cued side of space, irrespective of posture. Moreover, the influence of the cues was smaller when they were presented far in front of participants’ hands as compared to when they were presented in close proximity. Finally, participants’ temporal sensitivity was reduced by changing posture. These findings are compatible with the existence of a peripersonal frame of reference for the localization of nociceptive stimuli. This allows for the construction of a stable representation of our body and the space closely surrounding our body, enabling a quick and efficient reaction to potential physical threats. PMID:26317671

  15. Magno and Parvo Stimuli Affect Illusory Directional Hearing in Normal and Dyslexic Readers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Li, Winston; Meekins, Kelsey; Schirillo, James

    2012-01-01

    In an experimental paradigm adapted from Hari (1995), forty observers listened via headphones to 8 binaural clicks: 4 left-ear leading followed by 4 right-ear leading with either 38 or 140 ms interstimulus intervals (ISIs). Concurrently, they viewed either foveal or peripheral visual stimuli designed to activate either the parvocellular or…

  16. Effects of Response Task and Accessory Stimuli on Redundancy Gain: Tests of the Hemispheric Coactivation Model

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Miller, Jeff; Van Nes, Fenna

    2007-01-01

    Two experiments tested predictions of the hemispheric coactivation model for redundancy gain (J. O. Miller, 2004). Simple reaction time was measured in divided attention tasks with visual stimuli presented to the left or right of fixation or redundantly to both sides. Experiment 1 tested the prediction that redundancy gain--the decrease in…

  17. Interest Inventory Items as Reinforcing Stimuli: A Test of the A-R-D Theory.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Staats, Arthur W.; And Others

    An experiement was conducted to test the hypothesis that interest inventory items would function as reinforcing stimuli in a visual discrimination task. When previously rated liked and disliked items from the Strong Vocational Interest Blank were differentially presented following one of two responses, subjects learned to respond to the stimulus…

  18. Fusion Prevents the Redundant Signals Effect: Evidence from Stereoscopically Presented Stimuli

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schroter, Hannes; Fiedler, Anja; Miller, Jeff; Ulrich, Rolf

    2011-01-01

    In a simple reaction time (RT) experiment, visual stimuli were stereoscopically presented either to one eye (single stimulation) or to both eyes (redundant stimulation), with brightness matched for single and redundant stimulations. Redundant stimulation resulted in two separate percepts when noncorresponding retinal areas were stimulated, whereas…

  19. Effects of Affective Stimuli Mode on Eye Blink Rate and Anxiety

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Weiner, Elliot A.; Concepcion, Paul

    1975-01-01

    This study investigated the physiological responses to affective visual and auditory stimuli with eye-blink rate (EBR) as the physiological indicator and examined the relationship between this response and subjective anxiety-level ratings by means of Zuckerman and Lubin's Multiple Affect Adjective Check-list (MACCL). (Author)

  20. TypingSuite: Integrated Software for Presenting Stimuli, and Collecting and Analyzing Typing Data

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mazerolle, Erin L.; Marchand, Yannick

    2015-01-01

    Research into typing patterns has broad applications in both psycholinguistics and biometrics (i.e., improving security of computer access via each user's unique typing patterns). We present a new software package, TypingSuite, which can be used for presenting visual and auditory stimuli, collecting typing data, and summarizing and analyzing the…

  1. Role of inferior temporal neurons in visual memory. I. Temporal encoding of information about visual images, recalled images, and behavioral context.

    PubMed

    Eskandar, E N; Richmond, B J; Optican, L M

    1992-10-01

    1. Lesions of the inferior temporal (IT) cortex selectively hamper monkeys in tasks requiring visual memory. A system that recognizes images must be able to encode a current stimulus, recall the code of a previous stimulus, compare the codes of the two stimuli, and make a decision on the basis of the outcome of the comparison. Therefore, IT neurons must be involved in at least one of these processes. To determine the specific role of IT neurons in visual memory, we measured the information conveyed in the neuronal responses about current patterns, recalled patterns, and behavioral context. 2. Two monkeys were trained to perform a sequential matching task using a set of 32 black and white Walsh patterns. In the course of an experiment, each pattern was presented repeatedly in sample, match, and nonmatch behavioral contexts. While the monkeys were performing the task, we recorded the activity of 76 neurons from area TE of IT. The neuronal responses to the stimuli were converted to spike density functions, and the resultant waveforms were quantified using their principal components. The relationships between the responses and the stimuli were studied using analysis of variance and information theory. 3. The analysis of variance was applied to the neuronal response waveforms using the context (sample, match, or nonmatch) and the patterns of the stimuli as independent variables and the spike count or the coefficients of the principal components as the dependent variables. We found that the waveforms of most neurons were significantly modulated by both the pattern and the context of the stimulus presentation. 4. We also analyzed the stimulus-response relationships using information theory. The input codes were based on the pattern and context of the stimuli, and the output codes were based on the spike count or the principal components of the responses. The neuronal response waveforms were found to convey significant amounts of information about both the pattern and

  2. Cuttlefish Sepia officinalis Preferentially Respond to Bottom Rather than Side Stimuli When Not Allowed Adjacent to Tank Walls

    PubMed Central

    Taniguchi, Darcy A. A.; Gagnon, Yakir; Wheeler, Benjamin R.; Johnsen, Sönke; Jaffe, Jules S.

    2015-01-01

    Cuttlefish are cephalopods capable of rapid camouflage responses to visual stimuli. However, it is not always clear to what these animals are responding. Previous studies have found cuttlefish to be more responsive to lateral stimuli rather than substrate. However, in previous works, the cuttlefish were allowed to settle next to the lateral stimuli. In this study, we examine whether juvenile cuttlefish (Sepia officinalis) respond more strongly to visual stimuli seen on the sides versus the bottom of an experimental aquarium, specifically when the animals are not allowed to be adjacent to the tank walls. We used the Sub Sea Holodeck, a novel aquarium that employs plasma display screens to create a variety of artificial visual environments without disturbing the animals. Once the cuttlefish were acclimated, we compared the variability of camouflage patterns that were elicited from displaying various stimuli on the bottom versus the sides of the Holodeck. To characterize the camouflage patterns, we classified them in terms of uniform, disruptive, and mottled patterning. The elicited camouflage patterns from different bottom stimuli were more variable than those elicited by different side stimuli, suggesting that S. officinalis responds more strongly to the patterns displayed on the bottom than the sides of the tank. We argue that the cuttlefish pay more attention to the bottom of the Holodeck because it is closer and thus more relevant for camouflage. PMID:26465786

  3. Interocular suppression patterns in binocularly abnormal observers using luminance- and contrast-modulated noise stimuli.

    PubMed

    Chima, Akash S; Formankiewicz, Monika A; Waugh, Sarah J

    2016-08-01

    In binocular viewing, images presented to the amblyopic eye are suppressed in the cortex to prevent confusion or diplopia. The present study measures depth and extent of interocular suppression across the central circular 24° visual field in observers with strabismus and microstrabismus. Visual stimuli were concentric rings of alternating polarity, each divided into sectors. Rings were defined by luminance (L), luminance-modulated noise (LM), or contrast-modulated noise (CM). They were viewed binocularly except for the tested ring, which was viewed dichoptically, so that the modulation of one sector presented to the weaker or amblyopic eye was adjusted to perceptually match the surrounding ring presented to the preferred eye. A two alternative forced-choice paradigm combined with a staircase procedure allowed for measurement of the point of subjective equality, or perceptual match. Depth of suppression was calculated as the difference between physical modulations presented to the two eyes at this point. Strabismic participants showed suppression deeper centrally than peripherally, and in one hemifield of the visual field more than the other. Suppression was deeper for L than LM, and CM than LM stimuli. Microstrabismic suppression was weaker than that of strabismics, central for L and LM stimuli, with suppression of CM stimuli being broader, deeper and more in one hemifield. Suppression depth was positively correlated with interocular visual acuity difference and stereoacuity reduction. Clinically, LM stimuli could be used for assessment of deeper amblyopes to assess suppression patterns, while more sensitive detection of mild suppression would be possible using CM stimuli. PMID:27580040

  4. Abstraction of Drift Seepage

    SciTech Connect

    J.T. Birkholzer

    2004-11-01

    This model report documents the abstraction of drift seepage, conducted to provide seepage-relevant parameters and their probability distributions for use in Total System Performance Assessment for License Application (TSPA-LA). Drift seepage refers to the flow of liquid water into waste emplacement drifts. Water that seeps into drifts may contact waste packages and potentially mobilize radionuclides, and may result in advective transport of radionuclides through breached waste packages [''Risk Information to Support Prioritization of Performance Assessment Models'' (BSC 2003 [DIRS 168796], Section 3.3.2)]. The unsaturated rock layers overlying and hosting the repository form a natural barrier that reduces the amount of water entering emplacement drifts by natural subsurface processes. For example, drift seepage is limited by the capillary barrier forming at the drift crown, which decreases or even eliminates water flow from the unsaturated fractured rock into the drift. During the first few hundred years after waste emplacement, when above-boiling rock temperatures will develop as a result of heat generated by the decay of the radioactive waste, vaporization of percolation water is an additional factor limiting seepage. Estimating the effectiveness of these natural barrier capabilities and predicting the amount of seepage into drifts is an important aspect of assessing the performance of the repository. The TSPA-LA therefore includes a seepage component that calculates the amount of seepage into drifts [''Total System Performance Assessment (TSPA) Model/Analysis for the License Application'' (BSC 2004 [DIRS 168504], Section 6.3.3.1)]. The TSPA-LA calculation is performed with a probabilistic approach that accounts for the spatial and temporal variability and inherent uncertainty of seepage-relevant properties and processes. Results are used for subsequent TSPA-LA components that may handle, for example, waste package corrosion or radionuclide transport.

  5. Abstracts and reviews.

    PubMed

    Liebmann, G H; Wollman, L; Woltmann, A G

    1966-09-01

    Abstract Eric Berne, M.D.: Games People Play. Grove Press, New York, 1964. 192 pages. Price $5.00. Reviewed by Hugo G. Beigel Finkle, Alex M., Ph.D., M.D. and Prian, Dimitry F. Sexual Potency in Elderly Men before and after Prostatectomy. J.A.M.A., 196: 2, April, 1966. Reviewed by H. George Liebman Calvin C. Hernton: Sex and Racism In America. Grove Press, Inc. Black Cat Edition No. 113 (Paperback), 1966, 180 pp. Price $.95. Reviewed by Gus Woltmann Hans Lehfeldt, M.D., Ernest W. Kulka, M.D., H. George Liebman, M.D.: Comparative Study of Uterine Contraceptive Devices. Obstetrics and Gynecology, 26: 5, 1965, pp. 679-688. Lawrence Lipton. The Erotic Revolution. Sherbourne Press, Los Angeles, 1965. 322 pp., Price $7.50. Masters, William H., M.D. and Johnson, Virginia E. Human Sexual Response. Boston: Little, Brown and Co., 1966. 366 pages. Price $.10.00. Reviewed by Hans Lehfeldt Douglas P. Murphy, M.D. and Editha F. Torrano, M.D. Male Fertility in 3620 Childless Couples. Fertility and Sterility, 16: 3, May-June, 1965. Reviewed by Leo Wollman, M.D. Edwin M. Schur, Editor: The Family and the Sexual Revolution, Indiana University Press, Bloomington, Indiana, 1964. 427 pgs. Weldon, Virginia F., M.D., Blizzard, Robert M., M.D., and Migeon, Claude, M.D. Newborn Girls Misdiagnosed as Bilaterally Chryptorchid Males. The New England Journal of Medicine, April 14, 1966. Reviewed by H. George Liebman.

  6. Visual Awareness Is Limited by the Representational Architecture of the Visual System.

    PubMed

    Cohen, Michael A; Nakayama, Ken; Konkle, Talia; Stantić, Mirta; Alvarez, George A

    2015-11-01

    Visual perception and awareness have strict limitations. We suggest that one source of these limitations is the representational architecture of the visual system. Under this view, the extent to which items activate the same neural channels constrains the amount of information that can be processed by the visual system and ultimately reach awareness. Here, we measured how well stimuli from different categories (e.g., faces and cars) blocked one another from reaching awareness using two distinct paradigms that render stimuli invisible: visual masking and continuous flash suppression. Next, we used fMRI to measure the similarity of the neural responses elicited by these categories across the entire visual hierarchy. Overall, we found strong brain-behavior correlations within the ventral pathway, weaker correlations in the dorsal pathway, and no correlations in early visual cortex (V1-V3). These results suggest that the organization of higher level visual cortex constrains visual awareness and the overall processing capacity of visual cognition.

  7. Stimuli, Reinforcers, and the Persistence of Behavior

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nevin, John A.

    2009-01-01

    This article reviews evidence from basic and translational research with pigeons and humans suggesting that the persistence of operant behavior depends on the contingency between stimuli and reinforcers, and considers some implications for clinical interventions. (Contains 4 figures.)

  8. Accepted scientific research works (abstracts).

    PubMed

    2014-01-01

    These are the 39 accepted abstracts for IAYT's Symposium on Yoga Research (SYR) September 24-24, 2014 at the Kripalu Center for Yoga & Health and published in the Final Program Guide and Abstracts. PMID:25645134

  9. Emotional stimuli and motor conversion disorder.

    PubMed

    Voon, Valerie; Brezing, Christina; Gallea, Cecile; Ameli, Rezvan; Roelofs, Karin; LaFrance, W Curt; Hallett, Mark

    2010-05-01

    Conversion disorder is characterized by neurological signs and symptoms related to an underlying psychological issue. Amygdala activity to affective stimuli is well characterized in healthy volunteers with greater amygdala activity to both negative and positive stimuli relative to neutral stimuli, and greater activity to negative relative to positive stimuli. We investigated the relationship between conversion disorder and affect by assessing amygdala activity to affective stimuli. We conducted a functional magnetic resonance imaging study using a block design incidental affective task with fearful, happy and neutral face stimuli and compared valence contrasts between 16 patients with conversion disorder and 16 age- and gender-matched healthy volunteers. The patients with conversion disorder had positive movements such as tremor, dystonia or gait abnormalities. We also assessed functional connectivity between the amygdala and regions associated with motor preparation. A group by affect valence interaction was observed. Post hoc analyses revealed that whereas healthy volunteers had greater right amygdala activity to fearful versus neutral compared with happy versus neutral as expected, there were no valence differences in patients with conversion disorder. There were no group differences observed. The time course analysis also revealed greater right amygdala activity in patients with conversion disorder for happy stimuli (t = 2.96, P = 0.006) (with a trend for fearful stimuli, t = 1.81, P = 0.08) compared with healthy volunteers, with a pattern suggestive of impaired amygdala habituation even when controlling for depressive and anxiety symptoms. Using psychophysiological interaction analysis, patients with conversion disorder had greater functional connectivity between the right amygdala and the right supplementary motor area during both fearful versus neutral, and happy versus neutral 'stimuli' compared with healthy volunteers. These results were confirmed with

  10. Summer 2015 Internship Abstract

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smith, Courtney

    2015-01-01

    Green fluorescent protein (GFP) visually shows the expression of proteins by fluorescing when exposed to certain wavelengths of light. The GFP in this experiment was used to identify cells actively releasing viruses. The experiment focused on the effect of microgravity on the GFP expression of Akata B-cells infected with Epstein Barr Virus (EBV). Two flasks were prepared with 30 million cells each and two bioreactors were prepared with 50 million cells each. All four cultures were incubated for 16 days and fed every four days. Cellometer readings were taken on the feeding days to find cell size, viability, and GFP expression. In addition, the cells were treated with Propodium monoazide (PMA) and run through real time PCR to determine viral load on the feeding days. On the International Space Station air samples are taken to analyze the bacterial and fungal organisms in the air. The Sartorius Portable Airport is being investigated for potential use on the ISS to analyze for viral content in the air. Multiple samples were taken around Johnson Space Center building 37 and in Clear Lake Pediatric Clinic. The filter used was the gelatin membrane filter and the DNA was extracted directly from the filter. The DNA was then run through real time PCR for Varicella Zoster Virus (VZV) and EBV as well as GAPDH to test for the presence of DNA. The results so far have shown low DNA yield and no positive results for VZV or EBV. Further inquiry involves accurately replicating an atmosphere with high viral load from saliva as would be found on the ISS to run the air sampler in. Another line of research is stress hormones that may be correlated to the reactivation of latent viruses. The stress hormones from saliva samples are analyzed rather than blood samples. The quantity found in saliva shows the quantity of the hormones actually attached to cells and causing a reaction, whereas in the blood the quantity of hormones is the total amount released to cause a reaction. The particular

  11. ERP Modulation during Observation of Abstract Paintings by Franz Kline

    PubMed Central

    Sbriscia-Fioretti, Beatrice; Berchio, Cristina; Freedberg, David; Gallese, Vittorio; Umiltà, Maria Alessandra

    2013-01-01

    The aim of this study was to test the involvement of sensorimotor cortical circuits during the beholding of the static consequences of hand gestures devoid of any meaning.In order to verify this hypothesis we performed an EEG experiment presenting to participants images of abstract works of art with marked traces of brushstrokes. The EEG data were analyzed by using Event Related Potentials (ERPs). We aimed to demonstrate a direct involvement of sensorimotor cortical circuits during the beholding of these selected works of abstract art. The stimuli consisted of three different abstract black and white paintings by Franz Kline. Results verified our experimental hypothesis showing the activation of premotor and motor cortical areas during stimuli observation. In addition, abstract works of art observation elicited the activation of reward-related orbitofrontal areas, and cognitive categorization-related prefrontal areas. The cortical sensorimotor activation is a fundamental neurophysiological demonstration of the direct involvement of the cortical motor system in perception of static meaningless images belonging to abstract art. These results support the role of embodied simulation of artist’s gestures in the perception of works of art. PMID:24130693

  12. ERP modulation during observation of abstract paintings by Franz Kline.

    PubMed

    Sbriscia-Fioretti, Beatrice; Berchio, Cristina; Freedberg, David; Gallese, Vittorio; Umiltà, Maria Alessandra

    2013-01-01

    The aim of this study was to test the involvement of sensorimotor cortical circuits during the beholding of the static consequences of hand gestures devoid of any meaning.In order to verify this hypothesis we performed an EEG experiment presenting to participants images of abstract works of art with marked traces of brushstrokes. The EEG data were analyzed by using Event Related Potentials (ERPs). We aimed to demonstrate a direct involvement of sensorimotor cortical circuits during the beholding of these selected works of abstract art. The stimuli consisted of three different abstract black and white paintings by Franz Kline. Results verified our experimental hypothesis showing the activation of premotor and motor cortical areas during stimuli observation. In addition, abstract works of art observation elicited the activation of reward-related orbitofrontal areas, and cognitive categorization-related prefrontal areas. The cortical sensorimotor activation is a fundamental neurophysiological demonstration of the direct involvement of the cortical motor system in perception of static meaningless images belonging to abstract art. These results support the role of embodied simulation of artist's gestures in the perception of works of art.

  13. Adaptation and visual coding

    PubMed Central

    Webster, Michael A.

    2011-01-01

    Visual coding is a highly dynamic process and continuously adapting to the current viewing context. The perceptual changes that result from adaptation to recently viewed stimuli remain a powerful and popular tool for analyzing sensory mechanisms and plasticity. Over the last decade, the footprints of this adaptation have been tracked to both higher and lower levels of the visual pathway and over a wider range of timescales, revealing that visual processing is much more adaptable than previously thought. This work has also revealed that the pattern of aftereffects is similar across many stimulus dimensions, pointing to common coding principles in which adaptation plays a central role. However, why visual coding adapts has yet to be fully answered. PMID:21602298

  14. The neural substrates of visual perceptual learning of words: implications for the visual word form area hypothesis.

    PubMed

    Xue, Gui; Poldrack, Russell A

    2007-10-01

    Abstract It remains under debate whether the fusiform visual word form area (VWFA) is specific to visual word form and whether visual expertise increases its sensitivity (Xue et al., 2006; Cohen et al., 2002). The present study examined three related issues: (1) whether the VWFA is also involved in processing foreign writing that significantly differs from the native one, (2) the effect of visual word form training on VWFA activation after controlling the task difficulty, and (3) the transfer of visual word form learning. Eleven native English speakers were trained, during five sessions, to judge whether two subsequently flashed (100-msec duration with 200-msec interval) foreign characters (i.e., Korean Hangul) were identical or not. Visual noise was added to the stimuli to manipulate task difficulty. In functional magnetic resonance imaging scans before and after training, subjects performed the task once with the same noise level (i.e., parameter-matched scan) and once with noise level changed to match performance from pretraining to posttraining (i.e., performance-matched scan). Results indicated that training increased the accuracy in parameter-matched condition but remained constant in performance-matched condition (because of increasing task difficulty). Pretraining scans revealed stronger activation for English words than for Korean characters in the left inferior temporal gyrus and the left inferior frontal cortex, but not in the VWFA. Visual word form training significantly decreased the activation in the bilateral middle and left posterior fusiform when either parameters or performance were matched and for both trained and new items. These results confirm our conjecture that the VWFA is not dedicated to words, and visual expertise acquired with training reduces rather than increases its activity.

  15. Peripheral visual response time and visual display layout

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Haines, R. F.

    1974-01-01

    Experiments were performed on a group of 42 subjects in a study of their peripheral visual response time to visual signals under positive acceleration, during prolonged bedrest, at passive 70 deg headup body lift, under exposures to high air temperatures and high luminance levels, and under normal stress-free laboratory conditions. Diagrams are plotted for mean response times to white, red, yellow, green, and blue stimuli under different conditions.

  16. The Tactile Dimensions of Abstract Paintings: A Cross-Modal Study.

    PubMed

    Albertazzi, Liliana; Bacci, Francesca; Canal, Luisa; Micciolo, Rocco

    2016-07-01

    In our research, we tested for the existence of cross-modal visual and tactile associations in the experience of abstract art. Specifically, we measured the association of 60 abstract paintings with four couples of antonyms related to texture, such as warm or cold, smooth or rough, lightweight or heavy, soft or hard, investigating if the different modality of presentation on a computer screen (color versions: natural colors, inverted colors, black and white) gave rise to different associations relative to the four couples of opponent qualities. Second, we tested whether there might be differences between the ratings of the paintings when they were presented as images on a computer screen versus in real life at the museum. The results confirmed that associations between visual and tactile experience with such complex stimuli exist. In the case of the couple warm or cold, a significant inversion of associated qualities occurs when the images are presented in inverted colors as opposed to natural colors; furthermore, when presented in black and white, warm evaluations are "cooled down," but cold evaluations remain the same. The degree of smoothness could be considered not associated with the color versions. When seen in black and white, both the mean softness and the mean lightweight-ness of the paintings were reduced; however, in the last case, this effect was more evident for the most lightweight pictures. There is only a slight difference between the two presentations of the paintings as images presented on a computer screen and seen in real life, relative to the warm or cold and soft or hard dimensions. Of the four opponent qualities, the three pairs warm or cold, lightweight or heavy, and soft or hard showed the most interesting results in relation to the cross-modal associations.

  17. The Tactile Dimensions of Abstract Paintings: A Cross-Modal Study.

    PubMed

    Albertazzi, Liliana; Bacci, Francesca; Canal, Luisa; Micciolo, Rocco

    2016-07-01

    In our research, we tested for the existence of cross-modal visual and tactile associations in the experience of abstract art. Specifically, we measured the association of 60 abstract paintings with four couples of antonyms related to texture, such as warm or cold, smooth or rough, lightweight or heavy, soft or hard, investigating if the different modality of presentation on a computer screen (color versions: natural colors, inverted colors, black and white) gave rise to different associations relative to the four couples of opponent qualities. Second, we tested whether there might be differences between the ratings of the paintings when they were presented as images on a computer screen versus in real life at the museum. The results confirmed that associations between visual and tactile experience with such complex stimuli exist. In the case of the couple warm or cold, a significant inversion of associated qualities occurs when the images are presented in inverted colors as opposed to natural colors; furthermore, when presented in black and white, warm evaluations are "cooled down," but cold evaluations remain the same. The degree of smoothness could be considered not associated with the color versions. When seen in black and white, both the mean softness and the mean lightweight-ness of the paintings were reduced; however, in the last case, this effect was more evident for the most lightweight pictures. There is only a slight difference between the two presentations of the paintings as images presented on a computer screen and seen in real life, relative to the warm or cold and soft or hard dimensions. Of the four opponent qualities, the three pairs warm or cold, lightweight or heavy, and soft or hard showed the most interesting results in relation to the cross-modal associations. PMID:27071636

  18. [The abstract--why and how it should be written].

    PubMed

    Kourilová, M; Hulín, I

    1989-10-01

    The aim of the study is to provide stimuli for writing concise and coherent abstracts imaging the original article without loss of critical substance and clarity. The main functions of abstracts in providing quick information and reliable sources for indexing are emphasized. The purposes of the prospective reader have to be considered as they should determine the form and content of the abstract. The two main types, i.e. indicative and informative abstracts are assessed. The indicative abstract states what the full paper is about and is thus suitable only for review papers, essays, and nonexperimental studies. As its primary purpose is to help decide whether the full article should be read, it is practically useless when it accompanies a paper written in a different and not commonly accessible language (e.g. Slovak article, English abstract). The informative abstract has a high load of specified information. When concerning experimental work, it should state the aim, the material or subjects involved and methods used, the results obtained, and the conclusions drawn. The recently introduced structured abstract for clinical papers presents a comprehensive image of the full article in a format that makes explicit the elements of critical argument. A framework of useful steps for writing abstracts is provided by analyzing the three main phases of the abstracting process, i.e. 1. analytic reading, 2. extraction, organization and reduction of information, and 3. critical editing. The presented summary of hints for writing reader oriented abstracts and the list of actual examples of obfuscation should increase the awareness and commitment of authors in preparing good-quality abstracts.

  19. Using abstract language signals power.

    PubMed

    Wakslak, Cheryl J; Smith, Pamela K; Han, Albert

    2014-07-01

    Power can be gained through appearances: People who exhibit behavioral signals of power are often treated in a way that allows them to actually achieve such power (Ridgeway, Berger, & Smith, 1985; Smith & Galinsky, 2010). In the current article, we examine power signals within interpersonal communication, exploring whether use of concrete versus abstract language is seen as a signal of power. Because power activates abstraction (e.g., Smith & Trope, 2006), perceivers may expect higher power individuals to speak more abstractly and therefore will infer that speakers who use more abstract language have a higher degree of power. Across a variety of contexts and conversational subjects in 7 experiments, participants perceived respondents as more powerful when they used more abstract language (vs. more concrete language). Abstract language use appears to affect perceived power because it seems to reflect both a willingness to judge and a general style of abstract thinking.

  20. Influence of different stimuli on electromyographic variables of the biceps brachii.

    PubMed

    Guirro, R R J; Forti, F; Brambila, A C; Groff, K A

    2006-01-01

    The objective of this study was to assess the influence of different stimuli on the muscular response of 30 young sedentary male and female subjects. A conditioning module with A/D 16/32 signals of 12 bits (LYNX), with band-pass filter of 10-500 Hz and sampling frequency of 1000 Hz was used. A bipolar active surface electrode (LYNX), a load cell (MM-100 KRATOS) and a pressure cuff were also used. The volunteers were submitted to four conditions: Without stimulus (WS), auditive stimulus (AS), visual stimulus (VS), and auditive + visual stimuli (AVS). Matlab 6.5.1 software was used to process the signals for analyzing RMS and median frequency (MF), as well as muscular force (F) and cuff pressure (P). Statistical analysis consisted of the Wilcoxon and Mann-Whitney test with a critical level of 5%. As to RMS, females presented a significant increase in all types of stimuli compared to WS. As to MF there was no significant difference between the different groups for either sex. P in both sexes presented a significant increase when submitted to VS and AVS. F was higher for AVS in males and for any of the stimuli in females when compared to WS. In all the variables analyzed, males presented significantly higher values than females for all types of stimuli.