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Dynamic Mental Representations of Human Action


Thornton,  IM
Department Human Perception, Cognition and Action, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;

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Thornton, I. (2004). Dynamic Mental Representations of Human Action. Talk presented at 7th Tübingen Perception Conference (TWK 2004). Tübingen, Germany.

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The visual presentation of real, apparent or implied object motion is often accompanied by systematic errors in localization. In this talk, I will concentrate on one form of error—representational momentum—in which observers systematically misremember a stopping point as being further forward in the direction of motion or change. While representational momentum has been demonstrated using a wide variety of stimuli, in this talk I will focus specically on the perception and production of human actions. I will begin by reviewing a number of studies that have examined our ability to anticipate simple human actions, such as walking. I will then discuss recent work in our lab that has directly compared anticipation in visual perception with the production of grasping movements. Finally, I will discuss an ongoing project that explores how prior experience in manipulating physical objects that differ in weight affects subsequent visual anticipation when those objects are seen moving.