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The relative contributions of binocular and monocular depth cues to the control of goal - directed reaching movements

, : The relative contributions of binocular and monocular depth cues to the control of goal - directed reaching movements. Society for Neuroscience Abstract Viewer & Itinerary Planner : Abstract No 14 9

Using the movement kinematics for a simple object placement task, we have estimated the time-varying weights that subjects give to binocular and monocular cues to 3D surface orientation when planning and guiding a simple goal-directed hand movement. Subjects viewed a textured disk in a 3D virtual environment with full binocular vision. They were asked to move a cylinder from a starting platform and to place it flush onto the target surface. An optical tracking system was used to measure the position and orientation of the cylinder in real-time. The moving cylinder was rendered in the virtual display in alignment with the cylinder actually being moved by subjects. On each trial, a real target surface, invisible to subjects, was positioned and oriented in alignment with the virtual target surface by a robot arm. Target surfaces at a range of slants (from 16degree to 44degree away from the fronto-parallel) were presented randomly from trial-to-trial. On half of the trials, the binocular cues (disparity) and monocular cues (outline shape and texture) were made to suggest slightly different slants. We correlated the orientation trajectories of cylinders on the cue-conflict trials with the slants suggested by each set of cues to derive time varying weight functions that measured the relative contributions of the two types of cue to subjects' motor behavior. At low target slants (20degree), subjects' orienting movements depended most strongly on binocular cues (5:1 weight ratio), while at medium slants (40degree), they depended most strongly on monocular cues (3:1 weight ratio). The weights did not change significantly as a function of time and were the same regardless of whether or not the moving cylinder was visible. The results are similar to those found in perceptual tasks using textured, slanted surfaces, though the weights given to the monocular cues at medium slants found here are larger than any found in the perceptual literature to date.


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