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Timing Rhythms: Perceived Duration Increases with a Predictable Temporal Structure of Short Interval Fillers.

Horr NK, Di Luca M - PLoS ONE (2015)

Bottom Line: One account to explain effects of temporal structure is a non-linear accumulator-counter mechanism reset at the beginning of every subinterval.No general over- or underestimation is registered for rhythmically grouped compared to isochronous intervals.Implications of these findings for a non-linear clock model as well as a neural response magnitude account of perceived duration are discussed.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Centre for Computational Neuroscience and Cognitive Robotics, Department of Psychology, University of Birmingham, Edgbaston, Birmingham, B15 2TT, United Kingdom.

ABSTRACT
Variations in the temporal structure of an interval can lead to remarkable differences in perceived duration. For example, it has previously been shown that isochronous intervals, that is, intervals filled with temporally regular stimuli, are perceived to last longer than intervals left empty or filled with randomly timed stimuli. Characterizing the extent of such distortions is crucial to understanding how duration perception works. One account to explain effects of temporal structure is a non-linear accumulator-counter mechanism reset at the beginning of every subinterval. An alternative explanation based on entrainment to regular stimulation posits that the neural response to each filler stimulus in an isochronous sequence is amplified and a higher neural response may lead to an overestimation of duration. If entrainment is the key that generates response amplification and the distortions in perceived duration, then any form of predictability in the temporal structure of interval fillers should lead to the perception of an interval that lasts longer than a randomly filled one. The present experiments confirm that intervals filled with fully predictable rhythmically grouped stimuli lead to longer perceived duration than anisochronous intervals. No general over- or underestimation is registered for rhythmically grouped compared to isochronous intervals. However, we find that the number of stimuli in each group composing the rhythm also influences perceived duration. Implications of these findings for a non-linear clock model as well as a neural response magnitude account of perceived duration are discussed.

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Related in: MedlinePlus

Experimental Task in Experiment 1.Intervals compared in Experiment 1 displayed for two intervals of equal duration. Each rhythmic interval was compared to a random interval. The number of tones was always equal for the two intervals compared and their order was counterbalanced.
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pone.0141018.g001: Experimental Task in Experiment 1.Intervals compared in Experiment 1 displayed for two intervals of equal duration. Each rhythmic interval was compared to a random interval. The number of tones was always equal for the two intervals compared and their order was counterbalanced.

Mentions: Duration judgments were obtained in a two-interval forced-choice task. In every trial, participants pressed a button corresponding to which of two intervals appeared to last longer, the left button for the first one or the right button for the second one. One of the two intervals was always rhythmic, the other one random. One interval was always 1000ms long, while the other interval had a duration of 500ms, 700ms, 850ms, 1000ms, 1150ms, 1300ms or 1500ms. Varying durations of an interval solely changed the frequency of filler tones, while the number of fillers as well as their relative temporal relationships stayed intact. The different rhythmic patterns were presented blocked with the sequence of blocks randomized between participants. Fig 1 schematically displays the task and the temporal structure of intervals compared.


Timing Rhythms: Perceived Duration Increases with a Predictable Temporal Structure of Short Interval Fillers.

Horr NK, Di Luca M - PLoS ONE (2015)

Experimental Task in Experiment 1.Intervals compared in Experiment 1 displayed for two intervals of equal duration. Each rhythmic interval was compared to a random interval. The number of tones was always equal for the two intervals compared and their order was counterbalanced.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4608791&req=5

pone.0141018.g001: Experimental Task in Experiment 1.Intervals compared in Experiment 1 displayed for two intervals of equal duration. Each rhythmic interval was compared to a random interval. The number of tones was always equal for the two intervals compared and their order was counterbalanced.
Mentions: Duration judgments were obtained in a two-interval forced-choice task. In every trial, participants pressed a button corresponding to which of two intervals appeared to last longer, the left button for the first one or the right button for the second one. One of the two intervals was always rhythmic, the other one random. One interval was always 1000ms long, while the other interval had a duration of 500ms, 700ms, 850ms, 1000ms, 1150ms, 1300ms or 1500ms. Varying durations of an interval solely changed the frequency of filler tones, while the number of fillers as well as their relative temporal relationships stayed intact. The different rhythmic patterns were presented blocked with the sequence of blocks randomized between participants. Fig 1 schematically displays the task and the temporal structure of intervals compared.

Bottom Line: One account to explain effects of temporal structure is a non-linear accumulator-counter mechanism reset at the beginning of every subinterval.No general over- or underestimation is registered for rhythmically grouped compared to isochronous intervals.Implications of these findings for a non-linear clock model as well as a neural response magnitude account of perceived duration are discussed.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Centre for Computational Neuroscience and Cognitive Robotics, Department of Psychology, University of Birmingham, Edgbaston, Birmingham, B15 2TT, United Kingdom.

ABSTRACT
Variations in the temporal structure of an interval can lead to remarkable differences in perceived duration. For example, it has previously been shown that isochronous intervals, that is, intervals filled with temporally regular stimuli, are perceived to last longer than intervals left empty or filled with randomly timed stimuli. Characterizing the extent of such distortions is crucial to understanding how duration perception works. One account to explain effects of temporal structure is a non-linear accumulator-counter mechanism reset at the beginning of every subinterval. An alternative explanation based on entrainment to regular stimulation posits that the neural response to each filler stimulus in an isochronous sequence is amplified and a higher neural response may lead to an overestimation of duration. If entrainment is the key that generates response amplification and the distortions in perceived duration, then any form of predictability in the temporal structure of interval fillers should lead to the perception of an interval that lasts longer than a randomly filled one. The present experiments confirm that intervals filled with fully predictable rhythmically grouped stimuli lead to longer perceived duration than anisochronous intervals. No general over- or underestimation is registered for rhythmically grouped compared to isochronous intervals. However, we find that the number of stimuli in each group composing the rhythm also influences perceived duration. Implications of these findings for a non-linear clock model as well as a neural response magnitude account of perceived duration are discussed.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus