Visual motion priming by invisible actions

Vision Res. 2000;40(8):925-30. doi: 10.1016/s0042-6989(99)00239-4.


Element shape biases the perceived direction in ambiguous apparent motion displays. Likewise, the direction of motion influences the perception of ambiguous elements' shapes. A recent framework that suggests common spatial representations for perception and action predicts that actions should also influence the perceived direction of motion in ambiguous displays. In four experiments the perceived direction of an ambiguous display was shown to be primed by different types of invisible actions. An investigation of several aspects of action processing (like the type and direction of the hand movement or direction of the cue for the hand movement) showed that priming only occurred if the goal of the action and the motion display shared a common cognitive dimension. When that common dimension is given, planning an action is sufficient for motion priming.

MeSH terms

  • Cues
  • Flicker Fusion / physiology*
  • Hand / physiology
  • Humans
  • Motion Perception / physiology*
  • Movement / physiology
  • Psychophysics