The processing of linear perspective and binocular information for action and perception

Hugo Bruggeman, Albert Yonas, Juergen Konczak

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


To investigate the processing of linear perspective and binocular information for action and for the perceptual judgment of depth, we presented viewers with an actual Ames trapezoidal window. The display, when presented perpendicular to the line of sight, provided perspective information for a rectangular window slanted in depth, while binocular information specified a planar surface in the fronto-parallel plane. We compared pointing towards the display-edges with perceptual judgment of their positions in depth as the display orientation was varied under monocular and binocular view. On monocular trials, pointing and depth judgment were based on the perspective information and failed to respond accurately to changes in display orientation because pictorial information did not vary sufficiently to specify the small differences in orientation. For binocular trials, pointing was based on binocular information and precisely matched the changes in display orientation whereas depth judgment was short of such adjustment and based upon both binocular and perspective-specified slant information. The finding, that on binocular trials pointing was considerably less responsive to the illusion than perceptual judgment, supports an account of two separate processing streams in the human visual system, a ventral pathway involved in object recognition and a dorsal pathway that produces visual information for the control of actions. Previously, similar differences between perception and action were explained by an alternate explanation, that is, viewers selectively attend to different parts of a display in the two tasks. The finding that under monocular view participants responded to perspective information in both the action and the perception task rules out the attention-based argument.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1420-1426
Number of pages7
Issue number7
StatePublished - 2007

Bibliographical note

Copyright 2008 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.


  • Arm movement
  • Depth perception
  • Human
  • Monocular and binocular viewing
  • Motor control
  • Visual illusion


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