Stereoscopic segmentation cues improve visual timing performance in spatiotemporally cluttered environments

Daniel Talbot, Erik Van der Burg, John Cass*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Recently, Cass and Van der Burg demonstrated that temporal order judgment (TOJ) precision could be profoundly impaired by the mere presence of dynamic visual clutter elsewhere in the visual field. This study examines whether presenting target and distractor objects in different depth planes might ameliorate this remote temporal camouflage (RTC) effect. TOJ thresholds were measured under static and dynamic (flickering) distractor conditions. In Experiment 1, targets were presented at zero, crossed, or uncrossed disparity, with distractors fixed at zero disparity. Thresholds were significantly elevated under dynamic compared with static contextual conditions, replicating the RTC effect. Crossed but not uncrossed disparity targets improved performance in dynamic distractor contexts, which otherwise produce substantial RTC. In Experiment 2, the assignment of disparity was reversed: targets fixed at zero disparity; distractors crossed, uncrossed, or zero. Under these conditions, thresholds improved significantly in the nonzero distractor disparity conditions. These results indicate that presenting target and distractor objects in different planes can significantly improve TOJ performance in dynamic conditions. In Experiment 3, targets were each presented with a different sign of disparity (e.g., one crossed and the other uncrossed), with no resulting performance benefits. Results suggest that disparity can be used to alleviate the performance-diminishing effects of RTC, but only if both targets constitute a single and unique disparity-defined surface.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-16
Number of pages16
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2017


  • Binocular vision
  • Temporal processing
  • Temporal selection or modulation
  • Time perception

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