Comparative visual search: a difference that makes a difference

Pomplun M, Sichelschmidt L, Wagner K, Clermont T, Rickheit G, Ritter H (2001)
Cognitive Science 25(1): 3-36.

Journal Article | Published | English

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In this article we present a new experimental paradigm: comparative visual search. Each half of a display contains simple geometrical objects of three different colors and forms, The two display-halves are identical except for one object mismatched in either color or form. The subject's task is to fmd this mismatch. We illustrate the potential of this paradigm for investigating the underlying complex processes of perception and cognition by means of an eye-tracking study. Three possible search strategies are outlined, discussed, and reexamined on the basis of experimental results. Each strategy is characterized by the way it partitions the held of objects into "chunks." These strategies are: (i) Stimulus-wise scanning with minimization of total scan path length (a "traveling salesman" strategy), (ii) scanning of the objects in fixed-size areas (a "searchlight" strategy), and (iii) scanning of object sets based on variably sized clusters defined by object density and heterogeneity (a "clustering" strategy). To elucidate the processes underlying comparative Visual search, we introduce besides object density a new entropy-based measure for object heterogeneity. The effects of local density and entropy on several basic and derived eye-movement variables clearly rule out the traveling salesman strategy, but are most compatible with the clustering strategy. (C) 2001 Cognitive Science Society, Inc. All rights reserved.
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Pomplun M, Sichelschmidt L, Wagner K, Clermont T, Rickheit G, Ritter H. Comparative visual search: a difference that makes a difference. Cognitive Science. 2001;25(1):3-36.
Pomplun, M., Sichelschmidt, L., Wagner, K., Clermont, T., Rickheit, G., & Ritter, H. (2001). Comparative visual search: a difference that makes a difference. Cognitive Science, 25(1), 3-36.
Pomplun, M., Sichelschmidt, L., Wagner, K., Clermont, T., Rickheit, G., and Ritter, H. (2001). Comparative visual search: a difference that makes a difference. Cognitive Science 25, 3-36.
Pomplun, M., et al., 2001. Comparative visual search: a difference that makes a difference. Cognitive Science, 25(1), p 3-36.
M. Pomplun, et al., “Comparative visual search: a difference that makes a difference”, Cognitive Science, vol. 25, 2001, pp. 3-36.
Pomplun, M., Sichelschmidt, L., Wagner, K., Clermont, T., Rickheit, G., Ritter, H.: Comparative visual search: a difference that makes a difference. Cognitive Science. 25, 3-36 (2001).
Pomplun, Marc, Sichelschmidt, Lorenz, Wagner, K., Clermont, Thomas, Rickheit, Gert, and Ritter, Helge. “Comparative visual search: a difference that makes a difference”. Cognitive Science 25.1 (2001): 3-36.
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