Binocular rivalry produced by temporal frequency differences

Front Hum Neurosci. 2012 Jul 31;6:227. doi: 10.3389/fnhum.2012.00227. eCollection 2012.


When the eyes view images that are sufficiently different to prevent binocular fusion, binocular rivalry occurs and the images are seen sequentially in a stochastic alternation. Here we examine whether temporal frequency differences will trigger binocular rivalry by presenting two dynamic random-pixel arrays that are spatially matched but which modulate temporally at two different rates. We found that binocular rivalry between the two temporal frequencies did indeed occur, provided the frequencies were sufficiently different. Differences greater than two octaves (i.e., a factor of four) produced robust rivalry with clear-cut alternations similar to those experienced with spatial rivalry and with similar alternation rates. This finding indicates that temporal information can produce binocular rivalry in the absence of spatial conflict and is discussed in terms of rivalry requiring conflict between temporal channels.

Keywords: binocular rivalry; form; motion; temporal channels; temporal frequency.