The effects of retinal eccentricity on judgments about collisions

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Texas Tech University

To maneuver through the world safely, people must make judgments about collisions. Previous research has suggested that such judgments can be consistent with the use of veridical information available in the optic flow(e.g., tau, Lee, 1974, 1980; Schiff & Detwiler, 1979). However, it also has been suggested that judgments about collisions can be influenced by factors other than such veridical information, such as pictorial depth cues (DeLucia, 1991), the number of stimuli involved in the judgment (DeLucia & Novak, 1997), and task parameters (Tresilian, 1995). Furthermore, research also has suggested that sensitivity to information provided by the optic flow may vary with retinal eccentricity in judgments of heading. The proposed research examined whether judgments about collisions can be affected by retinal eccentricity. Results suggest that sensitivity to visual information in judgments about collisions is not retinally invariant. Such results have important implications for models of perceived collision and implications for human factors design.

Visual acuity, Traffic accident investigation, Judgment, Peripheral vision