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ERIC Number: EJ899687
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Oct
Pages: 17
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 58
ISSN: ISSN-0096-1523
Information-Limited Parallel Processing in Difficult Heterogeneous Covert Visual Search
Dosher, Barbara Anne; Han, Songmei; Lu, Zhong-Lin
Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, v36 n5 p1128-1144 Oct 2010
Difficult visual search is often attributed to time-limited serial attention operations, although neural computations in the early visual system are parallel. Using probabilistic search models (Dosher, Han, & Lu, 2004) and a full time-course analysis of the dynamics of covert visual search, we distinguish unlimited capacity parallel versus serial search mechanisms. Performance is measured for difficult and error-prone searches among heterogeneous background elements and for easy and accurate searches among homogeneous background elements. Contrary to the claims of time-limited serial attention, searches in heterogeneous backgrounds instead exhibited nearly identical search dynamics for display sizes up to 12 items. A review and new analyses indicate that most difficult as well as easy visual searches operate as an unlimited-capacity parallel analysis over the visual field within a single eye fixation, which suggests limitations in the availability of information, not temporal bottlenecks in analysis or comparison. Serial properties likely reflect overt attention expressed in eye movements. (Contains 1 table and 8 figures.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A