Jan 2, 2009

Fusion of visual and vestibular tilt cues in the perception of visual vertical

Journal of Neurophysiology
R A A VingerhoetsW Pieter Medendorp

Abstract

We investigated the effect of visual and vestibular body-tilt cues on the subjective visual vertical (SVV) in six human observers at roll tilts of 0, 60, and 120 degrees . Subjects adjusted a small luminous test line parallel to the perceived direction of gravity, in the presence of a large peripheral visual frame line. These settings, referred to as the frame SVV, were compared with the SVV in complete darkness (dark SVV). The frame SVV was virtually identical to the dark SVV for frame lines parallel or orthogonal to the dark SVV. Away from these neutral positions, the frame induced a periodic SVV modulation, which was small in upright observers, but became quite pronounced when subjects were tilted. For upright, where the dark SVV was very accurate, the frame SVV showed errors in both directions, following a roughly symmetrical pattern. At 120 degrees tilt, where the dark SVV invariably showed tilt undercompensation (A-effect), the frame effect became asymmetrical, with a stronger tendency to improve than to worsen accuracy. We tested whether our findings could be explained by two spatial orientation models: Mittelstaedt's idiotropic model and a Bayesian scheme with a stage for the processing of visual cues. Both models show ...Continue Reading

  • References46
  • Citations32

References

Mentioned in this Paper

Space Perception
Cues
Gravistimulation
Visual Fields
Postural Balance
Head Movements
Tilt (brand of fungicide)
Photic Stimulation
Vestibular Labyrinth
Psychological Orientation

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