Tuesday, July 12, 2005


Whenever an undergrad comes into my office and shiftily moves their eyes back and forth, I figure they're either nervous or just lying to me. Now I know they're just trying to speed up time.

Mind Hacks reports on a new report in Nature Neuroscience:

Concetta Morrone, John Ross and David Burr have just reported in Nature Neuroscience that subjective time is compressed around the onset of a saccadic eye movement. Saccades are the rapid, jerky eye movements that we perform thousands of times every day (see Hack #17) to align targets of interest with the high-acuity fovea at the centre of our eyes.

Morrone’s team asked participants to compare the time interval between two horizontal bars that were flashed up around the onset of a saccade, with the interval between a second pair of horizontal bars flashed up after the saccade. Participants said the intervals felt the same when the gap between the first two bars was 100ms and the gap between the second pair was 50ms – that is, subjective time was speeded up by a factor of two near the saccade onset.

Read more here .


Anonymous a bitter young professor said...

Not a chance. Really, those undergrads are shifty-eyed because they suspect you might confront them about the term papers they bought on the web and then turned in.

9:58 PM  
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