Microsaccades distinguish between global and local visual processing
Turatto, M., Valsecchi, M., Tamè, L. and Betta, E. (2007) Microsaccades distinguish between global and local visual processing. Neuroreport, 18 (10). pp. 1015-1018. ISSN 1473-558X
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Much is known about the functional mechanisms involved in visual search. Yet, the fundamental question of whether the visual system can perform different types of visual analysis at different spatial resolutions still remains unsettled. In the visual-attention literature, the distinction between different spatial scales of visual processing corresponds to the distinction between distributed and focused attention. Some authors have argued that singleton detection can be performed in distributed attention, whereas others suggest that even such a simple visual operation involves focused attention. Here we showed that microsaccades were spatially biased during singleton discrimination but not during singleton detection. The results provide support to the hypothesis that some coarse visual analysis can be performed in a distributed attention mode.