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Perceptual Compression of Space Through Position Integration

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Perceptual Compression of Space through Position Integration

When moving figures are occluded and revealed piecemeal as they move across a narrow slit, observers may perceive them as integrated but distorted. They may also perceive much more of the figure as simultaneously visible than is actually presented at any moment. We obtained quantitative measures of both the perceived distortion and perceived simultaneity under free viewing conditions and related these phenomena to spontaneous pursuit eye movements, the retinal painting produced by this pursuit, and the occurrence of saccades. We found both shape compressions and expansions, depending on figure velocity. We also obtained quantitative evidence that observers perceived slices of the moving figures far wider than the slit through which they were presented. Eye-motion records and retinal stabilization revealed that spontaneous pursuit and the spatially extended images that could have been painted out by this pursuit played no role in the perceived global shape distortions and made only a small contribution to the perceived simultaneity. Therefore,

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