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Temporal perception in vision : an examination of bottleneck models Visser, Troy Anthony William

Abstract

The present work is an examination of the mechanisms underlying temporal processing in vision. Recent studies have shown that when observers are asked to identify two objects presented in rapid succession, identification of the first object is quite accurate, while identification of the second object is poor when it folows the first at very brief inter-target intervals (i.e. 200-500 ms). This second-target deficit is known as the attentional blink. According to bottleneck models, the attentional blink occurs because processing of the first target prevents the second target from gaining access to high-level processing. A strong prediction of this account is that if processing time for the first target is increased, the magnitude of the attentional blink should also increase. This prediction is confirmed in experiments. It is argued that these results strongly support bottleneck models as an account of the attentional blink in particular and of temporal processing more generally.

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