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Psychol Res. 2002 Feb;66(1):26-39.

A sensorimotor theory of temporal tracking and beat induction.

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Department of Psychology, University of Manchester, Manchester, M13 9PL, UK.


In this paper, we develop a theory of the neurobiological basis of temporal tracking and beat induction as a form of sensory-guided action. We propose three principal components for the neurological architecture of temporal tracking: (1) the central auditory system, which represents the temporal information in the input signal in the form of a modulation power spectrum; (2) the musculoskeletal system, which carries out the action and (3) a controller, in the form of a parieto-cerebellar-frontal loop, which carries out the synchronisation between input and output by means of an internal model of the musculoskeletal dynamics. The theory is implemented in the form of a computational algorithm which takes sound samples as input and synchronises a simple linear mass-spring-damper system to simulate audio-motor synchronisation. The model may be applied to both the tracking of isochronous click sequences and beat induction in rhythmic music or speech, and also accounts for the approximate Weberian property of timing.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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