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Psychol Res. 2010 Mar;74(2):152-71. doi: 10.1007/s00426-009-0226-2. Epub 2009 Feb 13.

On interference effects in concurrent perception and action.

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Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Leipzig, Germany.


Recent studies have reported repulsion effects between the perception of visual motion and the concurrent production of hand movements. Two models, based on the notions of common coding and internal forward modeling, have been proposed to account for these phenomena. They predict that the size of the effects in perception and action should be monotonically related and vary with the amount of similarity between what is produced and perceived. These predictions were tested in four experiments in which participants were asked to make hand movements in certain directions while simultaneously encoding the direction of an independent stimulus motion. As expected, perceived directions were repelled by produced directions, and produced directions were repelled by perceived directions. However, contrary to the models, the size of the effects in perception and action did not covary, nor did they depend (as predicted) on the amount of perception-action similarity. We propose that such interactions are mediated by the activation of categorical representations.

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