Drewing, Knut, Hitzel, Elena, Scocchia, Lisa (2017). The influence of flash characteristics on the visual and haptic flash-lag effect – research data from the 2012/2013 study.

Bibliographic Information

Creator: Drewing, Knut; Hitzel, Elena; Scocchia, Lisa

Contributor: Drewing, Knut; Hitzel, Elena; Scocchia, Lisa

Funding: German Research Foundation: CRC/ TRR 135, Project A5 (Knut Drewing)

Title: The influence of flash characteristics on the visual and haptic flash-lag effect – research data from the 2012/2013 study.

Year of Publication: 2017

Citation: Drewing, K., Hitzel, E., & Scocchia, L. (2017). The influence of flash characteristics on the visual and haptic flash-lag effect – research data from the 2012/2013 study. [Translated Title] (Version 1.0.0) [Data and Documentation]. Trier: Center for Research Data in Psychology: PsychData of the Leibniz Institute for Psychology ZPID. https://doi.org/10.5160/psychdata.dgkt13ei29


When a short flash occurs in spatial alignment with a moving object, the moving object is seen ahead the stationary one. Similar to this visual “flash-lag effect” (FLE) it has been recently observed for the haptic sense that participants judge a moving hand to be ahead a stationary hand when judged at the moment of a short vibration (“haptic flash”) that is applied when the two hands are spatially aligned. We further investigated the haptic FLE. First, we compared participants’ performance in two isosensory visual or haptic conditions, in which moving object and flash were presented only in a single modality (visual: sphere and short color change, haptic: hand and vibration), and two bisensory conditions, in which the moving object was presented in both modalities (hand aligned with visible sphere), but the flash was presented only visually or only haptically. The experiment aimed to disentangle contributions of the flash’s and the objects’ modalities to the FLEs in haptics versus vision. We observed a FLE when the flash was visually displayed, both when the moving object was visual and visuo-haptic. Because the position of a visual flash, but not of an analogue haptic flash, is misjudged relative to a same visuo-haptic moving object, the difference between visual and haptic conditions can be fully attributed to characteristics of the flash. The second experiment confirmed that a haptic FLE can be observed depending on flash characteristics: the FLE increases with decreasing intensity of the flash (slightly modulated by flash duration), which had been previously observed for vision. These findings underline the high relevance of flash characteristics in different senses, and thus fit well with the temporal-sampling framework, where the flash triggers a high-level, supra-modal process of position judgement, the time point of which further depends on the processing time of the flash.


1EXPERIMENTExperiment1 "Experiment 1"
2 "Experiment 2"
9 "Missing value (Fehlender Wert)"
2PARTICIPANTNUMBERNumber of participant (Versuchspersonennummer)Zeichenkette "participant number (Versuchspersonennummer)"9 "Missing value (Fehlender Wert)"
3OUTLIERPARTICIPANTParticipant outliers0 "participant included in data analyses (Vpn in Datenanalyse berücksichtigt)"
1 "participant exclude (Vpn ausgeschlossen)"
9 "Missing value (Fehlender Wert)"
4SESSIONNumber of session in experiment [Nummer der Sitzung im Experiment]Zeichenkette "Number of session (Nummer der Sitzung)"9 "Missing value (Fehlender Wert)"
5BLOCKNumber of block in session, if applicable [Nummer des Blocks in der Sitzung, wenn anwendbar]Zeichenkette "Number of block (Blocknummer)"9 "Missing value (Fehlender Wert)"
6TRIALNumber of trial in block/session [Nummer des Durchgangs in Block/Sitzung]1-448 "trial (Durchgang)"999 "Missing value (Fehlender Wert)"
7CONDITIONExperimental condition (Bedingung)Zeichenkette "Information see above (siehe Beschreibung oben)"9 "Missing value (Fehlender Wert)"
8FLASHDURATIONFlash duration (Flash Dauer) in ms16-33 "milliseconds (Millisekunden) (ms)"99 "Missing value (Fehlender Wert)"
9FLASHFORCEFlash force for haptic flash [Flash-Kraft bei haptischem Flash] in NZeichenkette "Newton (N)"9 "Missing value (Fehlender Wert)"
- "Missing value: not applicable (Fehlender Wert: Nicht zutreffend)"
10FLASHFREQUENCYFlash frequency for haptic flash [Flash-Frequenz bei haptischem Flash] in HzZeichenkette "Hertz (Hz)"9 "Missing value (Fehlender Wert)"
- "Missing value: not applicable (Fehlender Wert: Nicht zutreffend)"
11STARTPOINT_MOVEMENTleft or right of trajectory center [Objektbewegung startete links oder rechts des Zentrums des Bewegungspfades]Zeichenkette "left or right (links oder rechts)"9 "Missing value (Fehlender Wert)"
12MOVING_FINGERleft or right index finger was moved [linker oder rechter Zeigefinger wurde bewegt]Zeichenkette "left or right (links oder rechts)"9 "Missing value (Fehlender Wert)"
13FLASHED_MOVEMENTSEGMENTNumber of movement segment in that the flash was presented [Nummer der Teilbewegung, in der der Flash präsentiert wurde]2-5 "Number of movement segment (Teilbewegungsnummer)"9 "Missing value (Fehlender Wert)"
14FLASHPOSITIONFlash Position (Position bei Flash-Start) in mm-99-99 "Millimeters (Millimeter) (mm)"999 "Missing value (Fehlender Wert)"
15TIMEPOINT_FLASHONSETTimepoint of FlashOnset (Zeitpunkt des Starts des Flashs) in ms0-16052 "Millisekunden (milliseconds) (ms)"99999 "Missing value (Fehlender Wert)"
16TIMEPOINT_FINGERCROSSINGTimepoint of FingerCrossing (Zeitpunkt der Objektkreuzung) in ms0-16119 "Milliseconds (Millisekunden) (ms)"99999 "Missing value (Fehlender Wert)"
17OUTLIERTIMEPOINTDIFFOutlier timepoint different (Outlier wegen Messfehler)0 "data on time points valid (Daten zu Zeitpunkten valide)(variables TimePoint_FlashOnset[ms]; TimePoint_FingerCrossing[ms])"
1 "data on time points invalid due to measurement errors and not used in analyses (Daten zu Zeitpunkten invalide wegen Messfehlern und in den Analysen nicht verwendet)"
9 "Missing value (Fehlender Wert)"
18PARTICIPANTSRESPONSEParticipants response (Antwort der Versuchsperson)0 "moving object behind stationary one (bewegtes Objekt hinter stationärem)"
1 "moving object ahead stationary one (bewegtes Objekt vor stationärem)"
9 "Missing value (Fehlender Wert)"

Study Description

Research Questions/Hypotheses:

The initial hypothesis of the study is the temporal sampling hypothesis of the FLE, according to which the short stimulus in the FLE paradigm triggers a supramodal higher process of position judgment, the starting time of which depends on the processing time of the short stimulus. This leads to the hypothesis of a high relevance of the sensory characteristics of the short stimulus for the magnitude of the FLE, and that a longer processing time of the short stimulus is associated with a larger FLE. We examined these hypotheses with respect to the modality of the short stimulus (Experiment 1) and with respect to the duration and intensity of the short stimulus in haptic FLE (Experiment 2).

Research Design: Experimental design, Laboratory experiment; repeated measurements

Measurement Instruments/Apparatus:

Experiment 1: While Vpn observe periodic back-and-forth movements (visual object) or perform them with their right hand (haptic object), a short stimulus (=flash) is presented on the moving object, in the 3rd or 5th partial movement. Below the motion corridor was a stationary object, and Vpn judged whether the moving object was to the right or left of the stationary object when the brief stimulus was given. Four conditions were realized within each Vpn: The sensory modality of the brief stimulus (visual vs. haptic) and the sensory modalities of moving and stationary object (same modality as brief stimulus or both modalities, visual and haptic, simultaneously) were varied. The short stimulus started while the moving object was at one of seven positions relative to the stationary: -99, -66, -33, 0, 33, 66, 99 mm; the reciprocating motion started on the right or left. In each experimental block, for a single experimental condition, each combination of movement start position (2), short stimulus position (7), and partial movement with short stimulus (2) was presented twice (272*2 = 56 runs in random order). There were 3 blocks per experimental condition with short pauses in between. The order of the experimental conditions was balanced between Vpn according to Latin square. The experiment was conducted in 2 sessions of 2.5 h each; at the beginning of each session, the back-and-forth movement was practiced; at the beginning of the first sessions, 56 active movements of the Vpn were recorded, which were later reproduced as visual conditions.
For each experimental condition and each start position of the brief stimulus, the number of times the moving object was perceived “before” the stationary one was determined individually. Cumulative Gaussian functions were fitted to these data according to the MLE method. The mean of the function then estimated the position of the moving object perceived as equal to the stationary object, and the dispersion parameter estimated judgment accuracy.

Experiment 2: Short stimulus and both objects were always haptic. Intensity (1.5 vs. 3.0 N) and duration of the short stimulus were varied within Vpn; the short stimulus could be given during the 2nd, 3rd, 4th, or 5th partial movement. Each combination of experimental condition, position of the short stimulus, starting position of the movement, partial movement, and finger moved (left vs. right) was presented once per session, for a total of 2 sessions of 3.5 hours each. Which finger was moved changed every 56 runs; otherwise, the order of runs was completely randomized.

Data Collection Method:

Data collection in the presence of an experimenter
– Computer-Supported

Population: Psychology students; young adults

Survey Time Period:

Experiment 1: 2 sessions of 2.5 h each within one week
Experiment 2: 2 sessions of 3.5 h each within one week

Sample: Convenience sample

Gender Distribution:

76 % female subjects
24 % male subjects

Age Distribution: 20-27 years

Spatial Coverage (Country/Region/City): Germany/Hessen/Gießen

Subject Recruitment: Recruitment via mailing list for Psychology students at the Giessen University

Sample Size: Experiment 1: 8 individuals; Experiment 2: 9 (+2) individuals

Return/DropOut: Experiment 2: Data from 2 subjects (above: +2) were removed in the final analysis because judgment accuracy in at least one of the 4 conditions was judged to be an upward outlier (JND was 2.5 standard deviations above sample average; outlier Vpn were successively determined.


Publications Directly Related to the Dataset
Publications Directly Related to the Dataset
Drewing, K., Hitzel, E. & Scocchia, L. (2017). The Haptic and the Visual Flash-Lag Effect and the Role of Flash Characteristics. PLoS ONE 13(1): e0189291. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0189291
Further Reading
Further Reading
Brenner, E., van Beers, E.R., Rotman, G., & Smeets, J.B. (2006). The role of uncertainty in the systematic spatial mislocalization of moving objects. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception & Performance 32, 811–825.
Cellini, C., Scocchia, L., & Drewing, K. (2016). The buzz-lag effect. Experimental Brain Research 234, 2849-2857.
Datensatz 0318708
Hubbard, T.L. (2014). The flash-lag effect and related mislocalizations: Findings, properties, and theories. Psychological Bulletin 40, 308-338.
Nijhawan, R. (2002). Neural delays, visual motion and the flash-lag effect. Trends in Cognitive Science 6, 387-393.
Whitney, D., Murakami, I., & Cavanagh, P. (2000). Illusory spatial offset of a flash relative to a moving stimulus is caused by differential latencies for moving and flashed stimuli. Vision Research 40, 137-149.
Wichmann FA, Hill NJ. The psychometric function: I. Fitting, sampling, and goodness of fit. Percept Psychophys. 2001;63:1293-1313.
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