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Journal Article

The role of saccades in exerting voluntary control in perceptual and binocular rivalry


van Dam,  LCJ
Research Group Multisensory Perception and Action, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;

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van Dam, L. (2006). The role of saccades in exerting voluntary control in perceptual and binocular rivalry. Vision Research, 46(6-7), 787-799. doi:doi:10.1016/j.visres.2005.10.011.

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We have investigated the role of saccades and fixation positions in two perceptual rivalry paradigms (slant rivalry and Necker cube) and in two binocular rivalry paradigms (grating and house–face rivalry), and we compared results obtained from two different voluntary control conditions (natural viewing and hold percept). We found that for binocular rivalry, rather than for perceptual rivalry, there is a marked positive temporal correlation between saccades and perceptual flips at about the moment of the flip. Across different voluntary control conditions the pattern of temporal correlation did not change (although the amount of correlation did frequently, but not always, change), indicating that subjects do not use different temporal eye movement schemes to exert voluntary control. Analysis of the fixation positions at about the moment of the flips indicates that the fixation position by itself does not determine the percept but that subjects prefer to fixate at different positions when asked to hold either of the different percepts.