Flow Structure Versus Retinal Location in the Optical Control of Stance

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Abstract

In four experiments I examined the importance of the retinal center and periphery in the pickup of optical information for controlling stance as a function of the dynamic geometrical structure of the optical flow. All experiments were performed in a moving room so that the magnitude of compensatory sway in response to room movements could be measured. In Experiments 1 and 2 I found stronger sway response to flow having a largely lamellar structure that was presented to the retinal periphery than to more radially structured flow in the center. In Experiment 3 observers turned their heads to face the right wall of the room, placing radial flow in the periphery and lamellar flow in the center of the visual field. Radial flow presented to the retinal periphery induced no compensatory sway. Lamellar flow in the center of the retina produced some sway. Flow structure apparently interacts with the exposed retinal area in controlling stance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)554-565
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance
Volume11
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 1 1985

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