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Sample records for facilitates tactile visual

  1. Cross-sensory facilitation reveals neural interactions between visual and tactile motion in humans

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Monica eGori

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available Many recent studies show that the human brain integrates information across the different senses and that stimuli of one sensory modality can enhance the perception of other modalities. Here we study the processes that mediate cross-modal facilitation and summation between visual and tactile motion. We find that while summation produced a generic, non-specific improvement of thresholds, probably reflecting higher-order interaction of decision signals, facilitation reveals a strong, direction-specific interaction, which we believe reflects sensory interactions. We measured visual and tactile velocity discrimination thresholds over a wide range of base velocities and conditions. Thresholds for both visual and tactile stimuli showed the characteristic dipper function, with the minimum thresholds occurring at a given pedestal speed. When visual and tactile coherent stimuli were combined (summation condition the thresholds for these multi-sensory stimuli also showed a dipper function with the minimum thresholds occurring in a similar range to that for unisensory signals. However, the improvement of multisensory thresholds was weak and not directionally specific, well predicted by the maximum likelihood estimation model (agreeing with previous research. A different technique (facilitation did, however, reveal direction-specific enhancement. Adding a non-informative pedestal motion stimulus in one sensory modality (vision or touch selectively lowered thresholds in the other, by the same amount as pedestals in the same modality. Facilitation did not occur for neutral stimuli like sounds (that would also have reduced temporal uncertainty, nor for motion in opposite direction, even in blocked trials where the subjects knew that the motion was in the opposite direction showing that the facilitation was not under subject control. Cross-sensory facilitation is strong evidence for functionally relevant cross-sensory integration at early levels of sensory

  2. Acoustic Tactile Representation of Visual Information

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    Silva, Pubudu Madhawa

    Our goal is to explore the use of hearing and touch to convey graphical and pictorial information to visually impaired people. Our focus is on dynamic, interactive display of visual information using existing, widely available devices, such as smart phones and tablets with touch sensitive screens. We propose a new approach for acoustic-tactile representation of visual signals that can be implemented on a touch screen and allows the user to actively explore a two-dimensional layout consisting of one or more objects with a finger or a stylus while listening to auditory feedback via stereo headphones. The proposed approach is acoustic-tactile because sound is used as the primary source of information for object localization and identification, while touch is used for pointing and kinesthetic feedback. A static overlay of raised-dot tactile patterns can also be added. A key distinguishing feature of the proposed approach is the use of spatial sound (directional and distance cues) to facilitate the active exploration of the layout. We consider a variety of configurations for acoustic-tactile rendering of object size, shape, identity, and location, as well as for the overall perception of simple layouts and scenes. While our primary goal is to explore the fundamental capabilities and limitations of representing visual information in acoustic-tactile form, we also consider a number of relatively simple configurations that can be tied to specific applications. In particular, we consider a simple scene layout consisting of objects in a linear arrangement, each with a distinct tapping sound, which we compare to a ''virtual cane.'' We will also present a configuration that can convey a ''Venn diagram.'' We present systematic subjective experiments to evaluate the effectiveness of the proposed display for shape perception, object identification and localization, and 2-D layout perception, as well as the applications. Our experiments were conducted with visually blocked

  3. Kinesthetic information facilitates saccades towards proprioceptive-tactile targets.

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    Voudouris, Dimitris; Goettker, Alexander; Mueller, Stefanie; Fiehler, Katja

    2016-05-01

    Saccades to somatosensory targets have longer latencies and are less accurate and precise than saccades to visual targets. Here we examined how different somatosensory information influences the planning and control of saccadic eye movements. Participants fixated a central cross and initiated a saccade as fast as possible in response to a tactile stimulus that was presented to either the index or the middle fingertip of their unseen left hand. In a static condition, the hand remained at a target location for the entire block of trials and the stimulus was presented at a fixed time after an auditory tone. Therefore, the target location was derived only from proprioceptive and tactile information. In a moving condition, the hand was first actively moved to the same target location and the stimulus was then presented immediately. Thus, in the moving condition additional kinesthetic information about the target location was available. We found shorter saccade latencies in the moving compared to the static condition, but no differences in accuracy or precision of saccadic endpoints. In a second experiment, we introduced variable delays after the auditory tone (static condition) or after the end of the hand movement (moving condition) in order to reduce the predictability of the moment of the stimulation and to allow more time to process the kinesthetic information. Again, we found shorter latencies in the moving compared to the static condition but no improvement in saccade accuracy or precision. In a third experiment, we showed that the shorter saccade latencies in the moving condition cannot be explained by the temporal proximity between the relevant event (auditory tone or end of hand movement) and the moment of the stimulation. Our findings suggest that kinesthetic information facilitates planning, but not control, of saccadic eye movements to proprioceptive-tactile targets. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Visual explorer facilitator's guide

    CERN Document Server

    Palus, Charles J

    2010-01-01

    Grounded in research and practice, the Visual Explorer™ Facilitator's Guide provides a method for supporting collaborative, creative conversations about complex issues through the power of images. The guide is available as a component in the Visual Explorer Facilitator's Letter-sized Set, Visual Explorer Facilitator's Post card-sized Set, Visual Explorer Playing Card-sized Set, and is also available as a stand-alone title for purchase to assist multiple tool users in an organization.

  5. Attention Modulates Visual-Tactile Interaction in Spatial Pattern Matching

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    Göschl, Florian; Engel, Andreas K.; Friese, Uwe

    2014-01-01

    Factors influencing crossmodal interactions are manifold and operate in a stimulus-driven, bottom-up fashion, as well as via top-down control. Here, we evaluate the interplay of stimulus congruence and attention in a visual-tactile task. To this end, we used a matching paradigm requiring the identification of spatial patterns that were concurrently presented visually on a computer screen and haptically to the fingertips by means of a Braille stimulator. Stimulation in our paradigm was always bimodal with only the allocation of attention being manipulated between conditions. In separate blocks of the experiment, participants were instructed to (a) focus on a single modality to detect a specific target pattern, (b) pay attention to both modalities to detect a specific target pattern, or (c) to explicitly evaluate if the patterns in both modalities were congruent or not. For visual as well as tactile targets, congruent stimulus pairs led to quicker and more accurate detection compared to incongruent stimulation. This congruence facilitation effect was more prominent under divided attention. Incongruent stimulation led to behavioral decrements under divided attention as compared to selectively attending a single sensory channel. Additionally, when participants were asked to evaluate congruence explicitly, congruent stimulation was associated with better performance than incongruent stimulation. Our results extend previous findings from audiovisual studies, showing that stimulus congruence also resulted in behavioral improvements in visuotactile pattern matching. The interplay of stimulus processing and attentional control seems to be organized in a highly flexible fashion, with the integration of signals depending on both bottom-up and top-down factors, rather than occurring in an ‘all-or-nothing’ manner. PMID:25203102

  6. Attention modulates visual-tactile interaction in spatial pattern matching.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Florian Göschl

    Full Text Available Factors influencing crossmodal interactions are manifold and operate in a stimulus-driven, bottom-up fashion, as well as via top-down control. Here, we evaluate the interplay of stimulus congruence and attention in a visual-tactile task. To this end, we used a matching paradigm requiring the identification of spatial patterns that were concurrently presented visually on a computer screen and haptically to the fingertips by means of a Braille stimulator. Stimulation in our paradigm was always bimodal with only the allocation of attention being manipulated between conditions. In separate blocks of the experiment, participants were instructed to (a focus on a single modality to detect a specific target pattern, (b pay attention to both modalities to detect a specific target pattern, or (c to explicitly evaluate if the patterns in both modalities were congruent or not. For visual as well as tactile targets, congruent stimulus pairs led to quicker and more accurate detection compared to incongruent stimulation. This congruence facilitation effect was more prominent under divided attention. Incongruent stimulation led to behavioral decrements under divided attention as compared to selectively attending a single sensory channel. Additionally, when participants were asked to evaluate congruence explicitly, congruent stimulation was associated with better performance than incongruent stimulation. Our results extend previous findings from audiovisual studies, showing that stimulus congruence also resulted in behavioral improvements in visuotactile pattern matching. The interplay of stimulus processing and attentional control seems to be organized in a highly flexible fashion, with the integration of signals depending on both bottom-up and top-down factors, rather than occurring in an 'all-or-nothing' manner.

  7. Tactile Radar: experimenting a computer game with visually disabled.

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    Kastrup, Virgínia; Cassinelli, Alvaro; Quérette, Paulo; Bergstrom, Niklas; Sampaio, Eliana

    2017-09-18

    Visually disabled people increasingly use computers in everyday life, thanks to novel assistive technologies better tailored to their cognitive functioning. Like sighted people, many are interested in computer games - videogames and audio-games. Tactile-games are beginning to emerge. The Tactile Radar is a device through which a visually disabled person is able to detect distal obstacles. In this study, it is connected to a computer running a tactile-game. The game consists in finding and collecting randomly arranged coins in a virtual room. The study was conducted with nine congenital blind people including both sexes, aged 20-64 years old. Complementary methods of first and third person were used: the debriefing interview and the quasi-experimental design. The results indicate that the Tactile Radar is suitable for the creation of computer games specifically tailored for visually disabled people. Furthermore, the device seems capable of eliciting a powerful immersive experience. Methodologically speaking, this research contributes to the consolidation and development of first and third person complementary methods, particularly useful in disabled people research field, including the evaluation by users of the Tactile Radar effectiveness in a virtual reality context. Implications for rehabilitation Despite the growing interest in virtual games for visually disabled people, they still find barriers to access such games. Through the development of assistive technologies such as the Tactile Radar, applied in virtual games, we can create new opportunities for leisure, socialization and education for visually disabled people. The results of our study indicate that the Tactile Radar is adapted to the creation of video games for visually disabled people, providing a playful interaction with the players.

  8. Visual and tactile interfaces for bi-directional human robot communication

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    Barber, Daniel; Lackey, Stephanie; Reinerman-Jones, Lauren; Hudson, Irwin

    2013-05-01

    Seamless integration of unmanned and systems and Soldiers in the operational environment requires robust communication capabilities. Multi-Modal Communication (MMC) facilitates achieving this goal due to redundancy and levels of communication superior to single mode interaction using auditory, visual, and tactile modalities. Visual signaling using arm and hand gestures is a natural method of communication between people. Visual signals standardized within the U.S. Army Field Manual and in use by Soldiers provide a foundation for developing gestures for human to robot communication. Emerging technologies using Inertial Measurement Units (IMU) enable classification of arm and hand gestures for communication with a robot without the requirement of line-of-sight needed by computer vision techniques. These devices improve the robustness of interpreting gestures in noisy environments and are capable of classifying signals relevant to operational tasks. Closing the communication loop between Soldiers and robots necessitates them having the ability to return equivalent messages. Existing visual signals from robots to humans typically require highly anthropomorphic features not present on military vehicles. Tactile displays tap into an unused modality for robot to human communication. Typically used for hands-free navigation and cueing, existing tactile display technologies are used to deliver equivalent visual signals from the U.S. Army Field Manual. This paper describes ongoing research to collaboratively develop tactile communication methods with Soldiers, measure classification accuracy of visual signal interfaces, and provides an integration example including two robotic platforms.

  9. Auditory, Tactile, and Audiotactile Information Processing Following Visual Deprivation

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    Occelli, Valeria; Spence, Charles; Zampini, Massimiliano

    2013-01-01

    We highlight the results of those studies that have investigated the plastic reorganization processes that occur within the human brain as a consequence of visual deprivation, as well as how these processes give rise to behaviorally observable changes in the perceptual processing of auditory and tactile information. We review the evidence showing…

  10. Tactile and visual perception of injection moulded plastic parts

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Jacob Tobias; Akbas, Erkan; Madsen, Mads

    In today’s world the technical development have reached high levels in many products. This means that the technical specifications are not as high a competition factor as it has been. Therefore the visual appeal (aesthetics) and tactile perception (ergonomics) have become much more important in t...... in a number of ways including measuring of surface roughness, contact angle, gloss measurement and human perception....

  11. Establishing Auditory-Tactile-Visual Equivalence Classes in Children with Autism and Developmental Delays

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    Mullen, Stuart; Dixon, Mark R.; Belisle, Jordan; Stanley, Caleb

    2017-01-01

    The current study sought to evaluate the efficacy of a stimulus equivalence training procedure in establishing auditory-tactile-visual stimulus classes with 2 children with autism and developmental delays. Participants were exposed to vocal-tactile (A-B) and tactile-picture (B-C) conditional discrimination training and were tested for the…

  12. Visual illusion of tool use recalibrates tactile perception

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    Miller, Luke E.; Longo, Matthew R.; Saygin, Ayse P.

    2018-01-01

    Brief use of a tool recalibrates multisensory representations of the user’s body, a phenomenon called tool embodiment. Despite two decades of research, little is known about its boundary conditions. It has been widely argued that embodiment requires active tool use, suggesting a critical role for somatosensory and motor feedback. The present study used a visual illusion to cast doubt on this view. We used a mirror-based setup to induce a visual experience of tool use with an arm that was in fact stationary. Following illusory tool use, tactile perception was recalibrated on this stationary arm, and with equal magnitude as physical use. Recalibration was not found following illusory passive tool holding, and could not be accounted for by sensory conflict or general interhemispheric plasticity. These results suggest visual tool-use signals play a critical role in driving tool embodiment. PMID:28196765

  13. Independent Attention Mechanisms Control the Activation of Tactile and Visual Working Memory Representations.

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    Katus, Tobias; Eimer, Martin

    2018-05-01

    Working memory (WM) is limited in capacity, but it is controversial whether these capacity limitations are domain-general or are generated independently within separate modality-specific memory systems. These alternative accounts were tested in bimodal visual/tactile WM tasks. In Experiment 1, participants memorized the locations of simultaneously presented task-relevant visual and tactile stimuli. Visual and tactile WM load was manipulated independently (one, two, or three items per modality), and one modality was unpredictably tested after each trial. To track the activation of visual and tactile WM representations during the retention interval, the visual contralateral delay activity (CDA) and tactile CDA (tCDA) were measured over visual and somatosensory cortex, respectively. CDA and tCDA amplitudes were selectively affected by WM load in the corresponding (tactile or visual) modality. The CDA parametrically increased when visual load increased from one to two and to three items. The tCDA was enhanced when tactile load increased from one to two items and showed no further enhancement for three tactile items. Critically, these load effects were strictly modality-specific, as substantiated by Bayesian statistics. Increasing tactile load did not affect the visual CDA, and increasing visual load did not modulate the tCDA. Task performance at memory test was also unaffected by WM load in the other (untested) modality. This was confirmed in a second behavioral experiment where tactile and visual loads were either two or four items, unimodal baseline conditions were included, and participants performed a color change detection task in the visual modality. These results show that WM capacity is not limited by a domain-general mechanism that operates across sensory modalities. They suggest instead that WM storage is mediated by distributed modality-specific control mechanisms that are activated independently and in parallel during multisensory WM.

  14. How Do Batters Use Visual, Auditory, and Tactile Information about the Success of a Baseball Swing?

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    Gray, Rob

    2009-01-01

    Bat/ball contact produces visual (the ball leaving the bat), auditory (the "crack" of the bat), and tactile (bat vibration) feedback about the success of the swing. We used a batting simulation to investigate how college baseball players use visual, tactile, and auditory feedback. In Experiment 1, swing accuracy (i.e., the lateral separation…

  15. Perceived duration of visual and tactile stimuli depends on perceived speed

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    Alice eTomassini

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available It is known that the perceived duration of visual stimuli is strongly influenced by speed: faster moving stimuli appear to last longer. To test whether this is a general property of sensory systems we asked participants to reproduce the duration of visual and tactile gratings, and visuo-tactile gratings moving at a variable speed (3.5 – 15 cm/s for three different durations (400, 600 and 800 ms. For both modalities, the apparent duration of the stimulus increased strongly with stimulus speed, more so for tactile than for visual stimuli. In addition, visual stimuli were perceived to last approximately 200 ms longer than tactile stimuli. The apparent duration of visuo-tactile stimuli lay between the unimodal estimates, as the Bayesian account predicts, but the bimodal precision of the reproduction did not show the theoretical improvement. A cross-modal speed-matching task revealed that visual stimuli were perceived to move faster than tactile stimuli. To test whether the large difference in the perceived duration of visual and tactile stimuli resulted from the difference in their perceived speed, we repeated the time reproduction task with visual and tactile stimuli matched in apparent speed. This reduced, but did not completely eliminate the difference in apparent duration. These results show that for both vision and touch, perceived duration depends on speed, pointing to common strategies of time perception.

  16. Visual and tactile length matching in spatial neglect.

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    Bisiach, Edoardo; McIntosh, Robert D; Dijkerman, H Chris; McClements, Kevin I; Colombo, Mariarosa; Milner, A David

    2004-01-01

    Previous studies have shown that many patients with spatial neglect underestimate the horizontal extent of leftwardly located shapes (presented on screen or on paper) relative to rightwardly located shapes. This has been used to help explain their leftward biases in line bisection. In the present study we have tested patients with right hemisphere damage, either with or without neglect, on a comparable length matching task, but using 3-dimensional objects. The task was executed first visually without tactile contact, and second through touch without vision. In both sense modalities, we found that patients with neglect, but not those without, tended to underestimate leftward located objects relative to rightward located objects, differing significantly in this regard from healthy subjects. However these lateral biases were not as frequent or as pronounced as in previous studies using 2-D visual shapes. Despite the similar asymmetries in the two sense modalities, we found only a small correlation between them, and clear double dissociations were observed among our patients. We conclude that leftward length underestimation cannot be attributed to any one single cause. First it cannot be entirely due to impairments in the visual pathways, such as hemianopia and/or processing biases, since the disorder is also seen in the tactile modality. At the same time, however, length underestimation phenomena cannot be fully explained as a disruption of a supramodal central size processor, since they can occur in either vision or touch alone. Our data would fit best with a multiple-factor model in which some patients show leftward length underestimation for modality-specific reasons, while others do so due to a more high-level disruption of size judgements.

  17. Tactile-dependant corticomotor facilitation is influenced by discrimination performance in seniors

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    Tremblay François

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Active contraction leads to facilitation of motor responses evoked by transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS. In small hand muscles, motor facilitation is known to be also influenced by the nature of the task. Recently, we showed that corticomotor facilitation was selectively enhanced when young participants actively discriminated tactile symbols with the tip of their index or little finger. This tactile-dependant motor facilitation reflected, for the large part, attentional influences associated with performing tactile discrimination, since execution of a concomitant distraction task abolished facilitation. In the present report, we extend these observations to examine the influence of age on the ability to produce extra motor facilitation when the hand is used for sensory exploration. Methods Corticomotor excitability was tested in 16 healthy seniors (58-83 years while they actively moved their right index finger over a surface under two task conditions. In the tactile discrimination (TD condition, participants attended to the spatial location of two tactile symbols on the explored surface, while in the non discrimination (ND condition, participants simply moved their finger over a blank surface. Changes in amplitude, in latency and in the silent period (SP duration were measured from recordings of motor evoked potentials (MEP in the right first dorsal interosseous muscle in response to TMS of the left motor cortex. Results Healthy seniors exhibited widely varying levels of performance with the TD task, older age being associated with lower accuracy and vice-versa. Large inter-individual variations were also observed in terms of tactile-specific corticomotor facilitation. Regrouping seniors into higher (n = 6 and lower performance groups (n = 10 revealed a significant task by performance interaction. This latter interaction reflected differences between higher and lower performance groups; tactile-related facilitation being

  18. Effectiveness of auditory and tactile crossmodal cues in a dual-task visual and auditory scenario.

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    Hopkins, Kevin; Kass, Steven J; Blalock, Lisa Durrance; Brill, J Christopher

    2017-05-01

    In this study, we examined how spatially informative auditory and tactile cues affected participants' performance on a visual search task while they simultaneously performed a secondary auditory task. Visual search task performance was assessed via reaction time and accuracy. Tactile and auditory cues provided the approximate location of the visual target within the search display. The inclusion of tactile and auditory cues improved performance in comparison to the no-cue baseline conditions. In comparison to the no-cue conditions, both tactile and auditory cues resulted in faster response times in the visual search only (single task) and visual-auditory (dual-task) conditions. However, the effectiveness of auditory and tactile cueing for visual task accuracy was shown to be dependent on task-type condition. Crossmodal cueing remains a viable strategy for improving task performance without increasing attentional load within a singular sensory modality. Practitioner Summary: Crossmodal cueing with dual-task performance has not been widely explored, yet has practical applications. We examined the effects of auditory and tactile crossmodal cues on visual search performance, with and without a secondary auditory task. Tactile cues aided visual search accuracy when also engaged in a secondary auditory task, whereas auditory cues did not.

  19. Braille and Tactile Graphics: Youths with Visual Impairments Share Their Experiences

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    Rosenblum, L. Penny; Herzberg, Tina S.

    2015-01-01

    Introduction: Data were collected from youths with visual impairment about their experiences with tactile graphics and braille materials used in mathematics and science classes. Methods: Youths answered questions and explored four tactile graphics made using different production methods. They located specific information on each graphic and shared…

  20. Participation of Parents in the Early Exploration of Tactile Graphics by Children Who Are Visually Impaired

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    Ryles, Ruby; Bell, Edward

    2009-01-01

    Seventy-three children with visual impairments aged 2-10 and their parents participated in a project that examined the children's interest in and exploration of tactile graphics. The parents reported that the children's interest in and conceptual understanding of the project's tactile workbook were high and that the children explored the…

  1. Characteristic sounds facilitate visual search.

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    Iordanescu, Lucica; Guzman-Martinez, Emmanuel; Grabowecky, Marcia; Suzuki, Satoru

    2008-06-01

    In a natural environment, objects that we look for often make characteristic sounds. A hiding cat may meow, or the keys in the cluttered drawer may jingle when moved. Using a visual search paradigm, we demonstrated that characteristic sounds facilitated visual localization of objects, even when the sounds carried no location information. For example, finding a cat was faster when participants heard a meow sound. In contrast, sounds had no effect when participants searched for names rather than pictures of objects. For example, hearing "meow" did not facilitate localization of the word cat. These results suggest that characteristic sounds cross-modally enhance visual (rather than conceptual) processing of the corresponding objects. Our behavioral demonstration of object-based cross-modal enhancement complements the extensive literature on space-based cross-modal interactions. When looking for your keys next time, you might want to play jingling sounds.

  2. Tactile search for change has less memory than visual search for change.

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    Yoshida, Takako; Yamaguchi, Ayumi; Tsutsui, Hideomi; Wake, Tenji

    2015-05-01

    Haptic perception of a 2D image is thought to make heavy demands on working memory. During active exploration, humans need to store the latest local sensory information and integrate it with kinesthetic information from hand and finger locations in order to generate a coherent perception. This tactile integration has not been studied as extensively as visual shape integration. In the current study, we compared working-memory capacity for tactile exploration to that of visual exploration as measured in change-detection tasks. We found smaller memory capacity during tactile exploration (approximately 1 item) compared with visual exploration (2-10 items). These differences generalized to position memory and could not be attributed to insufficient stimulus-exposure durations, acuity differences between modalities, or uncertainty over the position of items. This low capacity for tactile memory suggests that the haptic system is almost amnesic when outside the fingertips and that there is little or no cross-position integration.

  3. Research progress of functional magnetic resonance imaging in cross-modal activation of visual cortex during tactile perception

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhan Jie; Gong Honghan

    2013-01-01

    An increasing amount of neuroimaging studies recently demonstrated activation of visual cortex in both blind and sighted participants when performing a variety of tactile tasks such as Braille reading and tactile object recognition, which indicates that visual cortex not only receives visual information, but may participate in tactile perception. To address these cross-modal changes of visual cortex and the neurophysiological mechanisms, many researchers conducted explosive studies using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and have made some achievements. This review focuses on cross-modal activation of visual cortex and the underlying mechanisms during tactile perception in both blind and sighted individuals. (authors)

  4. Tactile-Foot Stimulation Can Assist the Navigation of People with Visual Impairment

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    Ramiro Velázquez

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Background. Tactile interfaces that stimulate the plantar surface with vibrations could represent a step forward toward the development of wearable, inconspicuous, unobtrusive, and inexpensive assistive devices for people with visual impairments. Objective. To study how people understand information through their feet and to maximize the capabilities of tactile-foot perception for assisting human navigation. Methods. Based on the physiology of the plantar surface, three prototypes of electronic tactile interfaces for the foot have been developed. With important technological improvements between them, all three prototypes essentially consist of a set of vibrating actuators embedded in a foam shoe-insole. Perceptual experiments involving direction recognition and real-time navigation in space were conducted with a total of 60 voluntary subjects. Results. The developed prototypes demonstrated that they are capable of transmitting tactile information that is easy and fast to understand. Average direction recognition rates were 76%, 88.3%, and 94.2% for subjects wearing the first, second, and third prototype, respectively. Exhibiting significant advances in tactile-foot stimulation, the third prototype was evaluated in navigation tasks. Results show that subjects were capable of following directional instructions useful for navigating spaces. Conclusion. Footwear providing tactile stimulation can be considered for assisting the navigation of people with visual impairments.

  5. Comparative evaluation of audio and audio - tactile methods to improve oral hygiene status of visually impaired school children

    OpenAIRE

    R Krishnakumar; Swarna Swathi Silla; Sugumaran K Durai; Mohan Govindarajan; Syed Shaheed Ahamed; Logeshwari Mathivanan

    2016-01-01

    Background: Visually impaired children are unable to maintain good oral hygiene, as their tactile abilities are often underdeveloped owing to their visual disturbances. Conventional brushing techniques are often poorly comprehended by these children and hence, it was decided to evaluate the effectiveness of audio and audio-tactile methods in improving the oral hygiene of these children. Objective: To evaluate and compare the effectiveness of audio and audio-tactile methods in improving oral h...

  6. Force control in the absence of visual and tactile feedback

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mugge, W.; Abbink, D.A.; Schouten, Alfred Christiaan; van der Helm, F.C.T.; Arendzen, J.H.; Meskers, C.G.M.

    2013-01-01

    Motor control tasks like stance or object handling require sensory feedback from proprioception, vision and touch. The distinction between tactile and proprioceptive sensors is not frequently made in dynamic motor control tasks, and if so, mostly based on signal latency. We previously found that

  7. Short-term visual deprivation does not enhance passive tactile spatial acuity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael Wong

    Full Text Available An important unresolved question in sensory neuroscience is whether, and if so with what time course, tactile perception is enhanced by visual deprivation. In three experiments involving 158 normally sighted human participants, we assessed whether tactile spatial acuity improves with short-term visual deprivation over periods ranging from under 10 to over 110 minutes. We used an automated, precisely controlled two-interval forced-choice grating orientation task to assess each participant's ability to discern the orientation of square-wave gratings pressed against the stationary index finger pad of the dominant hand. A two-down one-up staircase (Experiment 1 or a Bayesian adaptive procedure (Experiments 2 and 3 was used to determine the groove width of the grating whose orientation each participant could reliably discriminate. The experiments consistently showed that tactile grating orientation discrimination does not improve with short-term visual deprivation. In fact, we found that tactile performance degraded slightly but significantly upon a brief period of visual deprivation (Experiment 1 and did not improve over periods of up to 110 minutes of deprivation (Experiments 2 and 3. The results additionally showed that grating orientation discrimination tends to improve upon repeated testing, and confirmed that women significantly outperform men on the grating orientation task. We conclude that, contrary to two recent reports but consistent with an earlier literature, passive tactile spatial acuity is not enhanced by short-term visual deprivation. Our findings have important theoretical and practical implications. On the theoretical side, the findings set limits on the time course over which neural mechanisms such as crossmodal plasticity may operate to drive sensory changes; on the practical side, the findings suggest that researchers who compare tactile acuity of blind and sighted participants should not blindfold the sighted participants.

  8. Development of tactile floor plan for the blind and the visually impaired by 3D printing technique

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    Raša Urbas

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available The aim of the research was to produce tactile floor plans for blind and visually impaired people for the use in the museum. For the production of tactile floor plans 3D printing technique was selected among three different techniques. 3D prints were made of white and colored ABS polymer materials. Development of different elements of tactile floor plans, as well as the problems and the solutions during 3D printing, are described in the paper.

  9. TacTool: a tactile rapid prototyping tool for visual interfaces

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Keyson, D.V.; Tang, H.K.; Anzai, Y.; Ogawa, K.; Mori, H.

    1995-01-01

    This paper describes the TacTool development tool and input device for designing and evaluating visual user interfaces with tactile feedback. TacTool is currently supported by the IPO trackball with force feedback in the x and y directions. The tool is designed to enable both the designer and the

  10. Practice makes perfect: the neural substrates of tactile discrimination by Mah-Jong experts include the primary visual cortex

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    Honda Manabu

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background It has yet to be determined whether visual-tactile cross-modal plasticity due to visual deprivation, particularly in the primary visual cortex (V1, is solely due to visual deprivation or if it is a result of long-term tactile training. Here we conducted an fMRI study with normally-sighted participants who had undergone long-term training on the tactile shape discrimination of the two dimensional (2D shapes on Mah-Jong tiles (Mah-Jong experts. Eight Mah-Jong experts and twelve healthy volunteers who were naïve to Mah-Jong performed a tactile shape matching task using Mah-Jong tiles with no visual input. Furthermore, seven out of eight experts performed a tactile shape matching task with unfamiliar 2D Braille characters. Results When participants performed tactile discrimination of Mah-Jong tiles, the left lateral occipital cortex (LO and V1 were activated in the well-trained subjects. In the naïve subjects, the LO was activated but V1 was not activated. Both the LO and V1 of the well-trained subjects were activated during Braille tactile discrimination tasks. Conclusion The activation of V1 in subjects trained in tactile discrimination may represent altered cross-modal responses as a result of long-term training.

  11. Tactile graphic: the possible form of information and inclusion of the visually impaired

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leia de Andrade

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available Although the graphics are present in the textbooks, these are not so accessible to the blind. In this case you need to generate them in high relief to be allowed to read through the tactile sense. For research in the development of tactile graphics with students in 5th grade the urban perimeter of Maringá (PR, drew on the Piaget’s theory, who directed the evaluation of the cognitive development of students in the tasks, and also semiology graphics proposed by Bertin, who helped design treatment information for this production. In order to show the importance of tactile graphics for visually impaired students, which are inserted into the regular classroom, it was evaluated the techniques of construction and production of tactile graphic, and the steps of reading material. The results show that the graphs constructed instigate exploration, as much as it was a favor to tactile perception. It is necessary to respect the "living space" of the chart, in the case indicated by the distance between the hands. Regarding reading, the difficulties encountered were the identification of form, the notion of scale and coordinate system.

  12. Teacher-Made Tactile Science Materials with Critical and Creative Thinking Activities for Learners Including Those with Visual Impairments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teske, Jolene K.; Gray, Phyllis; Kuhn, Mason A.; Clausen, Courtney K.; Smith, Latisha L.; Alsubia, Sukainah A.; Ghayoorad, Maryam; Rule, Audrey C.; Schneider, Jean Suchsland

    2014-01-01

    Gifted students with visual impairments are twice exceptional learners and may not evidence their advanced science aptitudes without appropriate accommodations for learning science. However, effective tactile science teaching materials may be easily made. Recent research has shown that when tactile materials are used with "all" students…

  13. Relative contributions of visual and auditory spatial representations to tactile localization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noel, Jean-Paul; Wallace, Mark

    2016-02-01

    Spatial localization of touch is critically dependent upon coordinate transformation between different reference frames, which must ultimately allow for alignment between somatotopic and external representations of space. Although prior work has shown an important role for cues such as body posture in influencing the spatial localization of touch, the relative contributions of the different sensory systems to this process are unknown. In the current study, we had participants perform a tactile temporal order judgment (TOJ) under different body postures and conditions of sensory deprivation. Specifically, participants performed non-speeded judgments about the order of two tactile stimuli presented in rapid succession on their ankles during conditions in which their legs were either uncrossed or crossed (and thus bringing somatotopic and external reference frames into conflict). These judgments were made in the absence of 1) visual, 2) auditory, or 3) combined audio-visual spatial information by blindfolding and/or placing participants in an anechoic chamber. As expected, results revealed that tactile temporal acuity was poorer under crossed than uncrossed leg postures. Intriguingly, results also revealed that auditory and audio-visual deprivation exacerbated the difference in tactile temporal acuity between uncrossed to crossed leg postures, an effect not seen for visual-only deprivation. Furthermore, the effects under combined audio-visual deprivation were greater than those seen for auditory deprivation. Collectively, these results indicate that mechanisms governing the alignment between somatotopic and external reference frames extend beyond those imposed by body posture to include spatial features conveyed by the auditory and visual modalities - with a heavier weighting of auditory than visual spatial information. Thus, sensory modalities conveying exteroceptive spatial information contribute to judgments regarding the localization of touch. Copyright © 2016

  14. Can you see what you feel? Color and folding properties affect visual-tactile material discrimination of fabrics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiao, Bei; Bi, Wenyan; Jia, Xiaodan; Wei, Hanhan; Adelson, Edward H

    2016-01-01

    Humans can often estimate tactile properties of objects from vision alone. For example, during online shopping, we can often infer material properties of clothing from images and judge how the material would feel against our skin. What visual information is important for tactile perception? Previous studies in material perception have focused on measuring surface appearance, such as gloss and roughness, and using verbal reports of material attributes and categories. However, in real life, predicting tactile properties of an object might not require accurate verbal descriptions of its surface attributes or categories. In this paper, we use tactile perception as ground truth to measure visual material perception. Using fabrics as our stimuli, we measure how observers match what they see (photographs of fabric samples) with what they feel (physical fabric samples). The data shows that color has a significant main effect in that removing color significantly reduces accuracy, especially when the images contain 3-D folds. We also find that images of draped fabrics, which revealed 3-D shape information, achieved better matching accuracy than images with flattened fabrics. The data shows a strong interaction between color and folding conditions on matching accuracy, suggesting that, in 3-D folding conditions, the visual system takes advantage of chromatic gradients to infer tactile properties but not in flattened conditions. Together, using a visual-tactile matching task, we show that humans use folding and color information in matching the visual and tactile properties of fabrics.

  15. Helping students revise disruptive experientially supported ideas about thermodynamics: Computer visualizations and tactile models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clark, Douglas; Jorde, Doris

    2004-01-01

    This study analyzes the impact of an integrated sensory model within a thermal equilibrium visualization. We hypothesized that this intervention would not only help students revise their disruptive experientially supported ideas about why objects feel hot or cold, but also increase their understanding of thermal equilibrium. The analysis synthesizes test data and interviews to measure the impact of this strategy. Results show that students in the experimental tactile group significantly outperform their control group counterparts on posttests and delayed posttests, not only on tactile explanations, but also on thermal equilibrium explanations. Interview transcripts of experimental and control group students corroborate these findings. Discussion addresses improving the tactile model as well as application of the strategy to other science topics. The discussion also considers possible incorporation of actual kinetic or thermal haptic feedback to reinforce the current audio and visual feedback of the visualization. This research builds on the conceptual change literature about the nature and role of students' experientially supported ideas as well as our understanding of curriculum and visualization design to support students in learning about thermodynamics, a science topic on which students perform poorly as shown by the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) and Third International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) studies.

  16. Tools for Teaching Mathematical Functions and Geometric Figures to Tactile Visualization through a Braille Printer for Visual Impairment People

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lorena León

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available In this article, we showed the features and facilities offered by two new computer programs developed for the treatment and generation of geometric figures and math functions, through a Braille printer designed for visually impaired people. The programs have complete accessible features, in which users with full visual impairments can communicate with the systems via short-keys, and the speech synthesizer. The system sends sound messages that will accompanying the user during all the process to generate geometrical figures or to do a mathematical treatment. Finally, a tactile visualization displays as the results to the person with visual impairment, thus they will can complete their geometry and mathematical studies.

  17. Control Framework for Dexterous Manipulation Using Dynamic Visual Servoing and Tactile Sensors’ Feedback

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlos A. Jara

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Tactile sensors play an important role in robotics manipulation to perform dexterous and complex tasks. This paper presents a novel control framework to perform dexterous manipulation with multi-fingered robotic hands using feedback data from tactile and visual sensors. This control framework permits the definition of new visual controllers which allow the path tracking of the object motion taking into account both the dynamics model of the robot hand and the grasping force of the fingertips under a hybrid control scheme. In addition, the proposed general method employs optimal control to obtain the desired behaviour in the joint space of the fingers based on an indicated cost function which determines how the control effort is distributed over the joints of the robotic hand. Finally, authors show experimental verifications on a real robotic manipulation system for some of the controllers derived from the control framework.

  18. Effect of mechanical tactile noise on amplitude of visual evoked potentials: multisensory stochastic resonance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Méndez-Balbuena, Ignacio; Huidobro, Nayeli; Silva, Mayte; Flores, Amira; Trenado, Carlos; Quintanar, Luis; Arias-Carrión, Oscar; Kristeva, Rumyana; Manjarrez, Elias

    2015-10-01

    The present investigation documents the electrophysiological occurrence of multisensory stochastic resonance in the human visual pathway elicited by tactile noise. We define multisensory stochastic resonance of brain evoked potentials as the phenomenon in which an intermediate level of input noise of one sensory modality enhances the brain evoked response of another sensory modality. Here we examined this phenomenon in visual evoked potentials (VEPs) modulated by the addition of tactile noise. Specifically, we examined whether a particular level of mechanical Gaussian noise applied to the index finger can improve the amplitude of the VEP. We compared the amplitude of the positive P100 VEP component between zero noise (ZN), optimal noise (ON), and high mechanical noise (HN). The data disclosed an inverted U-like graph for all the subjects, thus demonstrating the occurrence of a multisensory stochastic resonance in the P100 VEP. Copyright © 2015 the American Physiological Society.

  19. The Importance of Visual Experience, Gender, and Emotion in the Assessment of an Assistive Tactile Mouse.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brayda, Luca; Campus, Claudio; Memeo, Mariacarla; Lucagrossi, Laura

    2015-01-01

    Tactile maps are efficient tools to improve spatial understanding and mobility skills of visually impaired people. Their limited adaptability can be compensated with haptic devices which display graphical information, but their assessment is frequently limited to performance-based metrics only which can hide potential spatial abilities in O&M protocols. We assess a low-tech tactile mouse able to deliver three-dimensional content considering how performance, mental workload, behavior, and anxiety status vary with task difficulty and gender in congenitally blind, late blind, and sighted subjects. Results show that task difficulty coherently modulates the efficiency and difficulty to build mental maps, regardless of visual experience. Although exhibiting attitudes that were similar and gender-independent, the females had lower performance and higher cognitive load, especially when congenitally blind. All groups showed a significant decrease in anxiety after using the device. Tactile graphics with our device seems therefore to be applicable with different visual experiences, with no negative emotional consequences of mentally demanding spatial tasks. Going beyond performance-based assessment, our methodology can help with better targeting technological solutions in orientation and mobility protocols.

  20. Asymmetrical learning between a tactile and visual serial RT task

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Abrahamse, E.L.; van der Lubbe, Robert Henricus Johannes; Verwey, Willem B.

    2007-01-01

    According to many researchers, implicit learning in the serial reaction-time task is predominantly motor based and therefore should be independent of stimulus modality. Previous research on the task, however, has focused almost completely on the visual domain. Here we investigated sequence learning

  1. Tactile Gap Detection Deteriorates during Bimanual Symmetrical Movements under Mirror Visual Feedback.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Janet H Bultitude

    Full Text Available It has been suggested that incongruence between signals for motor intention and sensory input can cause pain and other sensory abnormalities. This claim is supported by reports that moving in an environment of induced sensorimotor conflict leads to elevated pain and sensory symptoms in those with certain painful conditions. Similar procedures can lead to reports of anomalous sensations in healthy volunteers too. In the present study, we used mirror visual feedback to investigate the effects of sensorimotor incongruence on responses to stimuli that arise from sources external to the body, in particular, touch. Incongruence between the sensory and motor signals for the right arm was manipulated by having the participants make symmetrical or asymmetrical movements while watching a reflection of their left arm in a parasagittal mirror, or the left hand surface of a similarly positioned opaque board. In contrast to our prediction, sensitivity to the presence of gaps in tactile stimulation of the right forearm was not reduced when participants made asymmetrical movements during mirror visual feedback, as compared to when they made symmetrical or asymmetrical movements with no visual feedback. Instead, sensitivity was reduced when participants made symmetrical movements during mirror visual feedback relative to the other three conditions. We suggest that small discrepancies between sensory and motor information, as they occur during mirror visual feedback with symmetrical movements, can impair tactile processing. In contrast, asymmetrical movements with mirror visual feedback may not impact tactile processing because the larger discrepancies between sensory and motor information may prevent the integration of these sources of information. These results contrast with previous reports of anomalous sensations during exposure to both low and high sensorimotor conflict, but are nevertheless in agreement with a forward model interpretation of perceptual

  2. Real-Time Knee Adduction Moment Feedback for Gait Retraining Through Visual and Tactile Displays

    KAUST Repository

    Wheeler, Jason W.; Shull, Pete B.; Besier, Thor F.

    2011-01-01

    The external knee adduction moment (KAM) measured during gait is an indicator of tibiofemoral joint osteoarthritis progression and various strategies have been proposed to lower it. Gait retraining has been shown to be an effective, noninvasive approach for lowering the KAM. We present a new gait retraining approach in which the KAM is fed back to subjects in real-time during ambulation. A study was conducted in which 16 healthy subjects learned to alter gait patterns to lower the KAM through visual or tactile (vibration) feedback. Participants converged on a comfortable gait in just a few minutes by using the feedback to iterate on various kinematic modifications. All subjects adopted altered gait patterns with lower KAM compared with normal ambulation (average reduction of 20.7%). Tactile and visual feedbacks were equally effective for real-time training, although subjects using tactile feedback took longer to converge on an acceptable gait. This study shows that real-time feedback of the KAM can greatly increase the effectiveness and efficiency of subject-specific gait retraining compared with conventional methods. © 2011 American Society of Mechanical Engineers.

  3. Tactile Ranschburg effects: facilitation and inhibitory repetition effects analogous to verbal memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roe, Daisy; Miles, Christopher; Johnson, Andrew J

    2017-07-01

    The present paper examines the effect of within-sequence item repetitions in tactile order memory. Employing an immediate serial recall procedure, participants reconstructed a six-item sequence tapped upon their fingers by moving those fingers in the order of original stimulation. In Experiment 1a, within-sequence repetition of an item separated by two-intervening items resulted in a significant reduction in recall accuracy for that repeated item (i.e., the Ranschburg effect). In Experiment 1b, within-sequence repetition of an adjacent item resulted in significant recall facilitation for that repeated item. These effects mirror those reported for verbal stimuli (e.g., Henson, 1998a . Item repetition in short-term memory: Ranschburg repeated. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition, 24(5), 1162-1181. doi:doi.org/10.1037/0278-7393.24.5.1162). These data are the first to demonstrate the Ranschburg effect with non-verbal stimuli and suggest further cross-modal similarities in order memory.

  4. Multisensory teamwork: using a tactile or an auditory display to exchange gaze information improves performance in joint visual search.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wahn, Basil; Schwandt, Jessika; Krüger, Matti; Crafa, Daina; Nunnendorf, Vanessa; König, Peter

    2016-06-01

    In joint tasks, adjusting to the actions of others is critical for success. For joint visual search tasks, research has shown that when search partners visually receive information about each other's gaze, they use this information to adjust to each other's actions, resulting in faster search performance. The present study used a visual, a tactile and an auditory display, respectively, to provide search partners with information about each other's gaze. Results showed that search partners performed faster when the gaze information was received via a tactile or auditory display in comparison to receiving it via a visual display or receiving no gaze information. Findings demonstrate the effectiveness of tactile and auditory displays for receiving task-relevant information in joint tasks and are applicable to circumstances in which little or no visual information is available or the visual modality is already taxed with a demanding task such as air-traffic control. Practitioner Summary: The present study demonstrates that tactile and auditory displays are effective for receiving information about actions of others in joint tasks. Findings are either applicable to circumstances in which little or no visual information is available or when the visual modality is already taxed with a demanding task.

  5. Intuitive tactile zooming for graphics accessed by individuals who are blind and visually impaired.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rastogi, Ravi; Pawluk, T V Dianne; Ketchum, Jessica

    2013-07-01

    One possibility of providing access to visual graphics for those who are visually impaired is to present them tactually: unfortunately, details easily available to vision need to be magnified to be accessible through touch. For this, we propose an "intuitive" zooming algorithm to solve potential problems with directly applying visual zooming techniques to haptic displays that sense the current location of a user on a virtual diagram with a position sensor and, then, provide the appropriate local information either through force or tactile feedback. Our technique works by determining and then traversing the levels of an object tree hierarchy of a diagram. In this manner, the zoom steps adjust to the content to be viewed, avoid clipping and do not zoom when no object is present. The algorithm was tested using a small, "mouse-like" display with tactile feedback on pictures representing houses in a community and boats on a lake. We asked the users to answer questions related to details in the pictures. Comparing our technique to linear and logarithmic step zooming, we found a significant increase in the correctness of the responses (odds ratios of 2.64:1 and 2.31:1, respectively) and usability (differences of 36% and 19%, respectively) using our "intuitive" zooming technique.

  6. Does the sight of physical threat induce a tactile processing bias? Modality-specific attentional facilitation induced by viewing threatening pictures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Damme, Stefaan; Gallace, Alberto; Spence, Charles; Crombez, Geert; Moseley, G Lorimer

    2009-02-09

    Threatening stimuli are thought to bias spatial attention toward the location from which the threat is presented. Although this effect is well-established in the visual domain, little is known regarding whether tactile attention is similarly affected by threatening pictures. We hypothesised that tactile attention might be more affected by cues implying physical threat to a person's bodily tissues than by cues implying general threat. In the present study, participants made temporal order judgments (TOJs) concerning which of a pair of tactile (or auditory) stimuli, one presented to either hand, at a range of inter-stimulus intervals, had been presented first. A picture (showing physical threat, general threat, or no threat) was presented in front of one or the other hand shortly before the tactile stimuli. The results revealed that tactile attention was biased toward the side on which the picture was presented, and that this effect was significantly larger for physical threat pictures than for general threat or neutral pictures. By contrast, the bias in auditory attention toward the side of the picture was significantly larger for general threat pictures than for physical threat pictures or neutral pictures. These findings therefore demonstrate a modality-specific effect of physically threatening cues on the processing of tactile stimuli, and of generally threatening cues on auditory information processing. These results demonstrate that the processing of tactile information from the body part closest to the threatening stimulus is prioritized over tactile information from elsewhere on the body.

  7. Supralinear and Supramodal Integration of Visual and Tactile Signals in Rats: Psychophysics and Neuronal Mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nikbakht, Nader; Tafreshiha, Azadeh; Zoccolan, Davide; Diamond, Mathew E

    2018-02-07

    To better understand how object recognition can be triggered independently of the sensory channel through which information is acquired, we devised a task in which rats judged the orientation of a raised, black and white grating. They learned to recognize two categories of orientation: 0° ± 45° ("horizontal") and 90° ± 45° ("vertical"). Each trial required a visual (V), a tactile (T), or a visual-tactile (VT) discrimination; VT performance was better than that predicted by optimal linear combination of V and T signals, indicating synergy between sensory channels. We examined posterior parietal cortex (PPC) and uncovered key neuronal correlates of the behavioral findings: PPC carried both graded information about object orientation and categorical information about the rat's upcoming choice; single neurons exhibited identical responses under the three modality conditions. Finally, a linear classifier of neuronal population firing replicated the behavioral findings. Taken together, these findings suggest that PPC is involved in the supramodal processing of shape. Copyright © 2018 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. Use of tactile materials for Astronomy teaching for visually- and hearing- impaired public schools in Minas Gerais

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paganotti, A.; Reis, C.; Voelzke, M. R.

    2017-12-01

    This work deals with the use of tactile materials as a pedagogical tool for the teaching of Astronomy, and this material was used in a didactic activity with 44 students of the public elementary school in Minas Gerais. A visually impaired student and another hearing impaired participated, being these the focus of the research. With the tactile visual material elaborated, the objective was to develop themes such as phases of the Moon, eclipses and Solar System. Two questionnaires were applied and revealed an improvement in the concepts related to Astronomy and in the socialization of disabled students with the group after the didactic activity.

  9. Visual Sensory Signals Dominate Tactile Cues during Docked Feeding in Hummingbirds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goller, Benjamin; Segre, Paolo S; Middleton, Kevin M; Dickinson, Michael H; Altshuler, Douglas L

    2017-01-01

    Animals living in and interacting with natural environments must monitor and respond to changing conditions and unpredictable situations. Using information from multiple sensory systems allows them to modify their behavior in response to their dynamic environment but also creates the challenge of integrating different, and potentially contradictory, sources of information for behavior control. Understanding how multiple information streams are integrated to produce flexible and reliable behavior is key to understanding how behavior is controlled in natural settings. Natural settings are rarely still, which challenges animals that require precise body position control, like hummingbirds, which hover while feeding from flowers. Tactile feedback, available only once the hummingbird is docked at the flower, could provide additional information to help maintain its position at the flower. To investigate the role of tactile information for hovering control during feeding, we first asked whether hummingbirds physically interact with a feeder once docked. We quantified physical interactions between docked hummingbirds and a feeder placed in front of a stationary background pattern. Force sensors on the feeder measured a complex time course of loading that reflects the wingbeat frequency and bill movement of feeding hummingbirds, and suggests that they sometimes push against the feeder with their bill. Next, we asked whether the measured tactile interactions were used by feeding hummingbirds to maintain position relative to the feeder. We created two experimental scenarios-one in which the feeder was stationary and the visual background moved and the other where the feeder moved laterally in front of a white background. When the visual background pattern moved, docked hummingbirds pushed significantly harder in the direction of horizontal visual motion. When the feeder moved, and the background was stationary, hummingbirds generated aerodynamic force in the opposite

  10. Impact of verbal, Braille text, and tactile oral hygiene awareness instructions on oral health status of visually impaired children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chowdary, P Brahmanna; Uloopi, K S; Vinay, C; Rao, V Veerabhadra; Rayala, Chandrasekhar

    2016-01-01

    Visually impaired children face limitations in interacting with the environment, as they cannot see the facial expression of parents, teachers and cannot perceive social behavior. These children are challenged every day in learning basic life skills and maintenance of oral hygiene being one among them. To evaluate the impact of verbal, braille text, and tactile oral hygiene awareness instructions on oral health status of visually impaired children. One hundred and twenty institutionalized visually impaired children aged 6-16 years were selected and divided into three groups (40 children each). Group I: Verbal and tactile, Group II: Verbal and braille, Group III: Verbal, braille, and tactile. Instructions regarding maintenance of good oral hygiene and brushing technique were explained to all the children, and oral health status of these children using plaque index (Silness and Loe) and gingival index (Loe and Silness) was evaluated at 1, 3, and 6 months interval. ANOVA test was used to analyze the intra- and inter-group comparisons and Tukey post-hoc test for multiple group comparisons. Children in all the groups showed reduction in plaque and gingival scores. There was the highest percentage of reduction in plaque scores in Group III (70.6%), and the decrease in gingival scores was the highest in Group II (84%). Severity of dental plaque and gingivitis in visually impaired individuals can be reduced by a controlled and supervised educational program. The combination of all three, i.e., verbal, braille, and tactile mode of oral health educational aids proved to be effective.

  11. The Rubber Hand Illusion in Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders: Delayed Influence of Combined Tactile and Visual Input on Proprioception

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cascio, Carissa J.; Foss-Feig, Jennifer H.; Burnette, Courtney P.; Heacock, Jessica L.; Cosby, Akua A.

    2012-01-01

    In the rubber hand illusion, perceived hand ownership can be transferred to a rubber hand after synchronous visual and tactile stimulation. Perceived body ownership and self-other relation are foundational for development of self-awareness, imitation, and empathy, which are all affected in autism spectrum disorders (ASD). We examined the rubber…

  12. Tactile Approaches for Teaching Blind and Visually-Impaired Students in the Geosciences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Permenter, J. L.; Runyon, C.

    2003-12-01

    Hearing and touch are perhaps the two most important senses for teaching visually-impaired students in any context. Classroom lectures obviously emphasize the auditory aspects of learning, while touch is often relegated to either Braille texts or raised--line drawings for illustrative figures. From the student's perspective, some lecture topics, especially in the sciences, can be a challenge to grasp without additional stimuli. Geosciences have a distinct visual component that can be lost when teaching blind or visually-impaired students, particularly in the study of geomorphology and landform change. As an example, the matters raised concerning volcanic hazards can be difficult to envision without due attention to the limitations of visually-impaired students. Here, we suggest an example of a tactile approach for introducing the study of volcanoes and the hazards associated with them. Large, visually-stimulating images of a volcanic, populated region in southern Peru are supplied for those students who have poor but extant visual acuity, while precise, clay-based models of the region complement the images for those students, as well as for students who have no visual ability whatsoever. We use a model of the terrestrial volcano El Misti and the nearby city of Arequipa, Peru, to directly reflect the volcanic morphology and hazardous aspects of the terrain. The use of computer-generated digital elevation models from remote sensing imaging systems allows accurate replication of the regional topography. Instructors are able to modify these clay models to illustrate spatial and temporal changes in the region, allowing students to better grasp potential geological and geographical transformations over time. The models spawn engaging class discussions and help with designing hazard mitigation protocols.

  13. Impact of verbal, braille text, and tactile oral hygiene awareness instructions on oral health status of visually impaired children

    OpenAIRE

    P Brahmanna Chowdary; K S Uloopi; C Vinay; V Veerabhadra Rao; Chandrasekhar Rayala

    2016-01-01

    Background: Visually impaired children face limitations in interacting with the environment, as they cannot see the facial expression of parents, teachers and cannot perceive social behavior. These children are challenged every day in learning basic life skills and maintenance of oral hygiene being one among them. Aim: To evaluate the impact of verbal, braille text, and tactile oral hygiene awareness instructions on oral health status of visually impaired children. Materials and Methods: One ...

  14. Stable statistical representations facilitate visual search.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corbett, Jennifer E; Melcher, David

    2014-10-01

    Observers represent the average properties of object ensembles even when they cannot identify individual elements. To investigate the functional role of ensemble statistics, we examined how modulating statistical stability affects visual search. We varied the mean and/or individual sizes of an array of Gabor patches while observers searched for a tilted target. In "stable" blocks, the mean and/or local sizes of the Gabors were constant over successive displays, whereas in "unstable" baseline blocks they changed from trial to trial. Although there was no relationship between the context and the spatial location of the target, observers found targets faster (as indexed by faster correct responses and fewer saccades) as the global mean size became stable over several displays. Building statistical stability also facilitated scanning the scene, as measured by larger saccadic amplitudes, faster saccadic reaction times, and shorter fixation durations. These findings suggest a central role for peripheral visual information, creating context to free resources for detailed processing of salient targets and maintaining the illusion of visual stability.

  15. Walking strategies of visually impaired people on trapezoidal- and sinusoidal-section tactile groundsurface indicators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ranavolo, A; Conte, C; Iavicoli, S; Serrao, M; Silvetti, A; Sandrini, G; Pierelli, F; Draicchio, F

    2011-03-01

    The visual system in walking serves to perceive feedback or feed-forward signals. Therefore, visually impaired persons (VIP) have biased motor control mechanisms. The use of leading indicators (LIs) and long canes helps to improve their walking efficiency. The aims of this study were to compare the walking efficiency of VIP on trapezoidal- and sinusoidal-section LIs using an optoelectronic motion analysis system. VIP displayed a significantly longer stance phase, a shorter swing phase and shorter step and stride lengths when they walked on the sinusoidal LI than when they walked on the trapezoidal LI. Compared with the trapezoidal LI, VIP walking on the sinusoidal LI displayed significantly lower joint ranges of motion. The centre of mass lateral displacement was wider for VIP walking on the sinusoidal LI than on the trapezoidal LI. Some significant differences were also found in sighted persons walking on both LIs. In conclusion, the trapezoidal shape enabled visually impaired subjects to walk more efficiently, whereas the sinusoidal shape caused dynamic balance problems. STATEMENT OF RELEVANCE: These findings suggest that VIP can walk more efficiently, with a lower risk of falls, on trapezoidal-section than on sinusoidal-section LIs. These results should be considered when choosing the most appropriate ground tactile surface indicators for widespread use.

  16. Role of the precuneus in the detection of incongruency between tactile and visual texture information: A functional MRI study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kitada, Ryo; Sasaki, Akihiro T; Okamoto, Yuko; Kochiyama, Takanori; Sadato, Norihiro

    2014-11-01

    Visual clues as to the physical substance of manufactured objects can be misleading. For example, a plastic ring can appear to be made of gold. However, we can avoid misidentifying an object׳s substance by comparing visual and tactile information. As compared to the spatial properties of an object (e.g., orientation), however, little information regarding physical object properties (material properties) is shared between vision and touch. How can such different kinds of information be compared in the brain? One possibility is that the visuo-tactile comparison of material information is mediated by associations that are previously learned between the two modalities. Previous studies suggest that a cortical network involving the medial temporal lobe and precuneus plays a critical role in the retrieval of information from long-term memory. Here, we used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to test whether these brain regions are involved in the visuo-tactile comparison of material properties. The stimuli consisted of surfaces in which an oriented plastic bar was placed on a background texture. Twenty-two healthy participants determined whether the orientations of visually- and tactually-presented bar stimuli were congruent in the orientation conditions, and whether visually- and tactually-presented background textures were congruent in the texture conditions. The texture conditions revealed greater activation of the fusiform gyrus, medial temporal lobe and lateral prefrontal cortex compared with the orientation conditions. In the texture conditions, the precuneus showed greater response to incongruent stimuli than to congruent stimuli. This incongruency effect was greater for the texture conditions than for the orientation conditions. These results suggest that the precuneus is involved in detecting incongruency between tactile and visual texture information in concert with the medial temporal lobe, which is tightly linked with long-term memory. Copyright

  17. Early auditory change detection implicitly facilitated by ignored concurrent visual change during a Braille reading task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aoyama, Atsushi; Haruyama, Tomohiro; Kuriki, Shinya

    2013-09-01

    Unconscious monitoring of multimodal stimulus changes enables humans to effectively sense the external environment. Such automatic change detection is thought to be reflected in auditory and visual mismatch negativity (MMN) and mismatch negativity fields (MMFs). These are event-related potentials and magnetic fields, respectively, evoked by deviant stimuli within a sequence of standard stimuli, and both are typically studied during irrelevant visual tasks that cause the stimuli to be ignored. Due to the sensitivity of MMN/MMF to potential effects of explicit attention to vision, however, it is unclear whether multisensory co-occurring changes can purely facilitate early sensory change detection reciprocally across modalities. We adopted a tactile task involving the reading of Braille patterns as a neutral ignore condition, while measuring magnetoencephalographic responses to concurrent audiovisual stimuli that were infrequently deviated either in auditory, visual, or audiovisual dimensions; 1000-Hz standard tones were switched to 1050-Hz deviant tones and/or two-by-two standard check patterns displayed on both sides of visual fields were switched to deviant reversed patterns. The check patterns were set to be faint enough so that the reversals could be easily ignored even during Braille reading. While visual MMFs were virtually undetectable even for visual and audiovisual deviants, significant auditory MMFs were observed for auditory and audiovisual deviants, originating from bilateral supratemporal auditory areas. Notably, auditory MMFs were significantly enhanced for audiovisual deviants from about 100 ms post-stimulus, as compared with the summation responses for auditory and visual deviants or for each of the unisensory deviants recorded in separate sessions. Evidenced by high tactile task performance with unawareness of visual changes, we conclude that Braille reading can successfully suppress explicit attention and that simultaneous multisensory changes can

  18. Supramodal theta, gamma, and sustained fields predict modality-specific modulations of alpha and beta oscillations during visual and tactile working memory

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ede, F.L. van; Jensen, O.; Maris, E.G.G.

    2017-01-01

    Flexible control over currently relevant sensory representations is an essential feature of primate cognition. We investigated the neurophysiological bases of such flexible control in humans during an intermodal working memory task in which participants retained visual or tactile sequences. Using

  19. Integrated trimodal SSEP experimental setup for visual, auditory and tactile stimulation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuś, Rafał; Spustek, Tomasz; Zieleniewska, Magdalena; Duszyk, Anna; Rogowski, Piotr; Suffczyński, Piotr

    2017-12-01

    Objective. Steady-state evoked potentials (SSEPs), the brain responses to repetitive stimulation, are commonly used in both clinical practice and scientific research. Particular brain mechanisms underlying SSEPs in different modalities (i.e. visual, auditory and tactile) are very complex and still not completely understood. Each response has distinct resonant frequencies and exhibits a particular brain topography. Moreover, the topography can be frequency-dependent, as in case of auditory potentials. However, to study each modality separately and also to investigate multisensory interactions through multimodal experiments, a proper experimental setup appears to be of critical importance. The aim of this study was to design and evaluate a novel SSEP experimental setup providing a repetitive stimulation in three different modalities (visual, tactile and auditory) with a precise control of stimuli parameters. Results from a pilot study with a stimulation in a particular modality and in two modalities simultaneously prove the feasibility of the device to study SSEP phenomenon. Approach. We developed a setup of three separate stimulators that allows for a precise generation of repetitive stimuli. Besides sequential stimulation in a particular modality, parallel stimulation in up to three different modalities can be delivered. Stimulus in each modality is characterized by a stimulation frequency and a waveform (sine or square wave). We also present a novel methodology for the analysis of SSEPs. Main results. Apart from constructing the experimental setup, we conducted a pilot study with both sequential and simultaneous stimulation paradigms. EEG signals recorded during this study were analyzed with advanced methodology based on spatial filtering and adaptive approximation, followed by statistical evaluation. Significance. We developed a novel experimental setup for performing SSEP experiments. In this sense our study continues the ongoing research in this field. On the

  20. The role of vestibular and support-tactile-proprioceptive inputs in visual-manual tracking

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kornilova, Ludmila; Naumov, Ivan; Glukhikh, Dmitriy; Khabarova, Ekaterina; Pavlova, Aleksandra; Ekimovskiy, Georgiy; Sagalovitch, Viktor; Smirnov, Yuriy; Kozlovskaya, Inesa

    Sensorimotor disorders in weightlessness are caused by changes of functioning of gravity-dependent systems, first of all - vestibular and support. The question arises, what’s the role and the specific contribution of the support afferentation in the development of observed disorders. To determine the role and effects of vestibular, support, tactile and proprioceptive afferentation on characteristics of visual-manual tracking (VMT) we conducted a comparative analysis of the data obtained after prolonged spaceflight and in a model of weightlessness - horizontal “dry” immersion. Altogether we examined 16 Russian cosmonauts before and after prolonged spaceflights (129-215 days) and 30 subjects who stayed in immersion bath for 5-7 days to evaluate the state of the vestibular function (VF) using videooculography and characteristics of the visual-manual tracking (VMT) using electrooculography & joystick with biological visual feedback. Evaluation of the VF has shown that both after immersion and after prolonged spaceflight there were significant decrease of the static torsional otolith-cervical-ocular reflex (OCOR) and simultaneous significant increase of the dynamic vestibular-cervical-ocular reactions (VCOR) with a revealed negative correlation between parameters of the otoliths and canals reactions, as well as significant changes in accuracy of perception of the subjective visual vertical which correlated with changes in OCOR. Analyze of the VMT has shown that significant disorders of the visual tracking (VT) occurred from the beginning of the immersion up to 3-4 day after while in cosmonauts similar but much more pronounced oculomotor disorders and significant changes from the baseline were observed up to R+9 day postflight. Significant changes of the manual tracking (MT) were revealed only for gain and occurred on 1 and 3 days in immersion while after spaceflight such changes were observed up to R+5 day postflight. We found correlation between characteristics

  1. System to induce and measure embodiment of an artificial hand with programmable convergent visual and tactile stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benz, Heather L; Sieff, Talia R; Alborz, Mahsa; Kontson, Kimberly; Kilpatrick, Elizabeth; Civillico, Eugene F

    2016-08-01

    The sense of prosthesis embodiment, or the feeling that the device has been incorporated into a user's body image, may be enhanced by emerging technology such as invasive electrical stimulation for sensory feedback. In turn, prosthesis embodiment may be linked to increased prosthesis use and improved functional outcomes. We describe the development of a tool to assay artificial hand embodiment in a quantitative way in people with intact limbs, and characterize its operation. The system delivers temporally coordinated visual and tactile stimuli at a programmable latency while recording limb temperature. When programmed to deliver visual and tactile stimuli synchronously, recorded latency between the two was 33 ± 24 ms in the final pilot subject. This system enables standardized assays of the conditions necessary for prosthesis embodiment.

  2. Impact of verbal, braille text, and tactile oral hygiene awareness instructions on oral health status of visually impaired children

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P Brahmanna Chowdary

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Background: Visually impaired children face limitations in interacting with the environment, as they cannot see the facial expression of parents, teachers and cannot perceive social behavior. These children are challenged every day in learning basic life skills and maintenance of oral hygiene being one among them. Aim: To evaluate the impact of verbal, braille text, and tactile oral hygiene awareness instructions on oral health status of visually impaired children. Materials and Methods: One hundred and twenty institutionalized visually impaired children aged 6-16 years were selected and divided into three groups (40 children each. Group I: Verbal and tactile, Group II: Verbal and braille, Group III: Verbal, braille, and tactile. Instructions regarding maintenance of good oral hygiene and brushing technique were explained to all the children, and oral health status of these children using plaque index (Silness and Loe and gingival index (Loe and Silness was evaluated at 1, 3, and 6 months interval. Statistical Analysis: ANOVA test was used to analyze the intra- and inter-group comparisons and Tukey post-hoc test for multiple group comparisons. Results: Children in all the groups showed reduction in plaque and gingival scores. There was the highest percentage of reduction in plaque scores in Group III (70.6%, and the decrease in gingival scores was the highest in Group II (84%. Conclusion: Severity of dental plaque and gingivitis in visually impaired individuals can be reduced by a controlled and supervised educational program. The combination of all three, i.e., verbal, braille, and tactile mode of oral health educational aids proved to be effective.

  3. Evolutionary relevance facilitates visual information processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackson, Russell E; Calvillo, Dusti P

    2013-11-03

    Visual search of the environment is a fundamental human behavior that perceptual load affects powerfully. Previously investigated means for overcoming the inhibitions of high perceptual load, however, generalize poorly to real-world human behavior. We hypothesized that humans would process evolutionarily relevant stimuli more efficiently than evolutionarily novel stimuli, and evolutionary relevance would mitigate the repercussions of high perceptual load during visual search. Animacy is a significant component to evolutionary relevance of visual stimuli because perceiving animate entities is time-sensitive in ways that pose significant evolutionary consequences. Participants completing a visual search task located evolutionarily relevant and animate objects fastest and with the least impact of high perceptual load. Evolutionarily novel and inanimate objects were located slowest and with the highest impact of perceptual load. Evolutionary relevance may importantly affect everyday visual information processing.

  4. Evolutionary Relevance Facilitates Visual Information Processing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Russell E. Jackson

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Visual search of the environment is a fundamental human behavior that perceptual load affects powerfully. Previously investigated means for overcoming the inhibitions of high perceptual load, however, generalize poorly to real-world human behavior. We hypothesized that humans would process evolutionarily relevant stimuli more efficiently than evolutionarily novel stimuli, and evolutionary relevance would mitigate the repercussions of high perceptual load during visual search. Animacy is a significant component to evolutionary relevance of visual stimuli because perceiving animate entities is time-sensitive in ways that pose significant evolutionary consequences. Participants completing a visual search task located evolutionarily relevant and animate objects fastest and with the least impact of high perceptual load. Evolutionarily novel and inanimate objects were located slowest and with the highest impact of perceptual load. Evolutionary relevance may importantly affect everyday visual information processing.

  5. The Use of Fluorescence Technology versus Visual and Tactile Examination in the Detection of Oral Lesions: A Pilot Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ayoub, Hadeel M; Newcomb, Tara L; McCombs, Gayle B; Bonnie, Marshall

    2015-02-01

    This study compared the effectiveness of the VELscope® Vx versus visual and tactile intraoral examination in detecting oral lesions in an adult, high risk population. The pilot study compared the intra oral findings between 2 examination types. The sample was comprised of 30 participants who were addicted to either cigarettes or a dual addiction (cigarettes plus hookah). High risk population was defined as males who were current cigarette smokers or had a dual addiction. Two trained and experienced licensed dental hygienists conducted all examinations. Throughout the study, all visual and tactile intraoral examinations were conducted first by one dental hygienist first, followed by the VELscope® Vx fluorescence examinations by the second dental hygienist. All subjects received an inspection of the lips, labial and buccal mucosa, floor of the mouth, dorsal, ventral and lateral sides of the tongue, hard and soft palate, and visual inspection of the oropharynx and uvula. Both evaluations took place in 1 visit in the Dental Hygiene Research Center at Old Dominion University and external sites. All participants received oral cancer screening information, recommendations, referrals for tobacco cessation programs and brochures on the 2 types of examinations conducted. Participants were considered high risk based on demographics (current smokers and mostly males). Neither visual and tactile intraoral examination nor the VELscope® Vx examination showed positive lesions. No lesions were detected; therefore, no referrals were made. Data indicated the duration of tobacco use was significantly higher in cigarette smokers (14.1 years) than dual addiction smokers (5 years) (p>0.005). The average numbers of cigarettes smoked per day were 13.5 compared to 14.2 cigarettes for dual addiction smokers. Results from this study suggest the visual and tactile intraoral examination produced comparative results to the VELscope® Vx examination. Findings from this study support that the

  6. The workload implications of haptic displays in multi-display environments such as the cockpit: Dual-task interference of within-sense haptic inputs (tactile/proprioceptive) and between-sense inputs (tactile/proprioceptive/auditory/visual)

    OpenAIRE

    Castle, H

    2007-01-01

    Visual workload demand within the cockpit is reaching saturation, whereas the haptic sense (proprioceptive and tactile sensation) is relatively untapped, despite studies suggesting the benefits of haptic displays. MRT suggests that inputs from haptic displays will not interfere with inputs from visual or auditory displays. MRT is based on the premise that multisensory integration occurs only after unisensory processing. However, recent neuroscientific findings suggest that t...

  7. Endoscopic vs. tactile evaluation of subgingival calculus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Osborn, Joy B; Lenton, Patricia A; Lunos, Scott A; Blue, Christine M

    2014-08-01

    Endoscopic technology has been developed to facilitate imagery for use during diagnostic and therapeutic phases of periodontal care. The purpose of this study was to compare the level of subgingival calculus detection using a periodontal endoscope with that of conventional tactile explorer in periodontitis subjects. A convenience sample of 26 subjects with moderate periodontitis in at least 2 quadrants was recruited from the University of Minnesota School of Dentistry to undergo quadrant scaling and root planing. One quadrant from each subject was randomized for tactile calculus detection alone and the other quadrant for tactile detection plus the Perioscope ™ (Perioscopy Inc., Oakland, Cali). A calculus index on a 0 to 3 score was performed at baseline and at 2 post-scaling and root planing visits. Sites where calculus was detected at visit 1 were retreated. T-tests were used to determine within-subject differences between Perioscope™ and tactile measures, and changes in measures between visits. Significantly more calculus was detected using the Perioscope™ vs. tactile explorer for all 3 subject visits (pcalculus detection from baseline to visit 1 were statistically significant for both the Perioscope™ and tactile quadrants (pcalculus detection from visit 1 to visit 2 was only significant for the Perioscope™ quadrant (pcalculus at this visit. It was concluded that the addition of a visual component to calculus detection via the Perioscope™ was most helpful in the re-evaluation phase of periodontal therapy. Copyright © 2014 The American Dental Hygienists’ Association.

  8. Impact of oral health education by audio aids, braille and tactile models on the oral health status of visually impaired children of Bhopal City

    OpenAIRE

    Anjali Gautam; Ajay Bhambal; Swapnil Moghe

    2018-01-01

    Context: Children with special needs face unique challenges in day-to-day practice. They are dependent on their close ones for everything. To improve oral hygiene in such visually impaired children, undue training and education are required. Braille is an important language for reading and writing for the visually impaired. It helps them understand and visualize the world via touch. Audio aids are being used to impart health education to the visually impaired. Tactile models help them perceiv...

  9. Conversations about Visual Arts: Facilitating Oral Language

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chang, Ni; Cress, Susan

    2014-01-01

    Visual arts, such as drawings, are attractive to most young children. Marks left on paper by young children contain meaning. Although it is known that children's oral language could be enhanced through communication with adults, rarely is there a series of dialogues between adults and young children about their drawings. Often heard instead…

  10. Handwriting generates variable visual output to facilitate symbol learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Julia X; James, Karin H

    2016-03-01

    Recent research has demonstrated that handwriting practice facilitates letter categorization in young children. The present experiments investigated why handwriting practice facilitates visual categorization by comparing 2 hypotheses: that handwriting exerts its facilitative effect because of the visual-motor production of forms, resulting in a direct link between motor and perceptual systems, or because handwriting produces variable visual instances of a named category in the environment that then changes neural systems. We addressed these issues by measuring performance of 5-year-old children on a categorization task involving novel, Greek symbols across 6 different types of learning conditions: 3 involving visual-motor practice (copying typed symbols independently, tracing typed symbols, tracing handwritten symbols) and 3 involving visual-auditory practice (seeing and saying typed symbols of a single typed font, of variable typed fonts, and of handwritten examples). We could therefore compare visual-motor production with visual perception both of variable and similar forms. Comparisons across the 6 conditions (N = 72) demonstrated that all conditions that involved studying highly variable instances of a symbol facilitated symbol categorization relative to conditions where similar instances of a symbol were learned, regardless of visual-motor production. Therefore, learning perceptually variable instances of a category enhanced performance, suggesting that handwriting facilitates symbol understanding by virtue of its environmental output: supporting the notion of developmental change though brain-body-environment interactions. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved).

  11. Handwriting generates variable visual input to facilitate symbol learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Julia X.; James, Karin H.

    2015-01-01

    Recent research has demonstrated that handwriting practice facilitates letter categorization in young children. The present experiments investigated why handwriting practice facilitates visual categorization by comparing two hypotheses: That handwriting exerts its facilitative effect because of the visual-motor production of forms, resulting in a direct link between motor and perceptual systems, or because handwriting produces variable visual instances of a named category in the environment that then changes neural systems. We addressed these issues by measuring performance of 5 year-old children on a categorization task involving novel, Greek symbols across 6 different types of learning conditions: three involving visual-motor practice (copying typed symbols independently, tracing typed symbols, tracing handwritten symbols) and three involving visual-auditory practice (seeing and saying typed symbols of a single typed font, of variable typed fonts, and of handwritten examples). We could therefore compare visual-motor production with visual perception both of variable and similar forms. Comparisons across the six conditions (N=72) demonstrated that all conditions that involved studying highly variable instances of a symbol facilitated symbol categorization relative to conditions where similar instances of a symbol were learned, regardless of visual-motor production. Therefore, learning perceptually variable instances of a category enhanced performance, suggesting that handwriting facilitates symbol understanding by virtue of its environmental output: supporting the notion of developmental change though brain-body-environment interactions. PMID:26726913

  12. Visual form predictions facilitate auditory processing at the N1.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paris, Tim; Kim, Jeesun; Davis, Chris

    2017-02-20

    Auditory-visual (AV) events often involve a leading visual cue (e.g. auditory-visual speech) that allows the perceiver to generate predictions about the upcoming auditory event. Electrophysiological evidence suggests that when an auditory event is predicted, processing is sped up, i.e., the N1 component of the ERP occurs earlier (N1 facilitation). However, it is not clear (1) whether N1 facilitation is based specifically on predictive rather than multisensory integration and (2) which particular properties of the visual cue it is based on. The current experiment used artificial AV stimuli in which visual cues predicted but did not co-occur with auditory cues. Visual form cues (high and low salience) and the auditory-visual pairing were manipulated so that auditory predictions could be based on form and timing or on timing only. The results showed that N1 facilitation occurred only for combined form and temporal predictions. These results suggest that faster auditory processing (as indicated by N1 facilitation) is based on predictive processing generated by a visual cue that clearly predicts both what and when the auditory stimulus will occur. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  13. Impact of oral health education by audio aids, braille and tactile models on the oral health status of visually impaired children of Bhopal City.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gautam, Anjali; Bhambal, Ajay; Moghe, Swapnil

    2018-01-01

    Children with special needs face unique challenges in day-to-day practice. They are dependent on their close ones for everything. To improve oral hygiene in such visually impaired children, undue training and education are required. Braille is an important language for reading and writing for the visually impaired. It helps them understand and visualize the world via touch. Audio aids are being used to impart health education to the visually impaired. Tactile models help them perceive things which they cannot visualize and hence are an important learning tool. This study aimed to assess the improvement in oral hygiene by audio aids and Braille and tactile models in visually impaired children aged 6-16 years of Bhopal city. This was a prospective study. Sixty visually impaired children aged 6-16 years were selected and randomly divided into three groups (20 children each). Group A: audio aids + Braille, Group B: audio aids + tactile models, and Group C: audio aids + Braille + tactile models. Instructions were given for maintaining good oral hygiene and brushing techniques were explained to all children. After 3 months' time, the oral hygiene status was recorded and compared using plaque and gingival index. ANNOVA test was used. The present study showed a decrease in the mean plaque and gingival scores at all time intervals in individual group as compared to that of the baseline that was statistically significant. The study depicts that the combination of audio aids, Braille and tactile models is an effective way to provide oral health education and improve oral health status of visually impaired children.

  14. Impact of oral health education by audio aids, braille and tactile models on the oral health status of visually impaired children of Bhopal City

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anjali Gautam

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Context: Children with special needs face unique challenges in day-to-day practice. They are dependent on their close ones for everything. To improve oral hygiene in such visually impaired children, undue training and education are required. Braille is an important language for reading and writing for the visually impaired. It helps them understand and visualize the world via touch. Audio aids are being used to impart health education to the visually impaired. Tactile models help them perceive things which they cannot visualize and hence are an important learning tool. Aim: This study aimed to assess the improvement in oral hygiene by audio aids and Braille and tactile models in visually impaired children aged 6–16 years of Bhopal city. Settings and Design: This was a prospective study. Materials and Methods: Sixty visually impaired children aged 6–16 years were selected and randomly divided into three groups (20 children each. Group A: audio aids + Braille, Group B: audio aids + tactile models, and Group C: audio aids + Braille + tactile models. Instructions were given for maintaining good oral hygiene and brushing techniques were explained to all children. After 3 months' time, the oral hygiene status was recorded and compared using plaque and gingival index. Statistical Analysis Used: ANNOVA test was used. Results: The present study showed a decrease in the mean plaque and gingival scores at all time intervals in individual group as compared to that of the baseline that was statistically significant. Conclusions: The study depicts that the combination of audio aids, Braille and tactile models is an effective way to provide oral health education and improve oral health status of visually impaired children.

  15. Multisensory training can promote or impede visual perceptual learning of speech stimuli: visual-tactile vs. visual-auditory training.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eberhardt, Silvio P; Auer, Edward T; Bernstein, Lynne E

    2014-01-01

    In a series of studies we have been investigating how multisensory training affects unisensory perceptual learning with speech stimuli. Previously, we reported that audiovisual (AV) training with speech stimuli can promote auditory-only (AO) perceptual learning in normal-hearing adults but can impede learning in congenitally deaf adults with late-acquired cochlear implants. Here, impeder and promoter effects were sought in normal-hearing adults who participated in lipreading training. In Experiment 1, visual-only (VO) training on paired associations between CVCVC nonsense word videos and nonsense pictures demonstrated that VO words could be learned to a high level of accuracy even by poor lipreaders. In Experiment 2, visual-auditory (VA) training in the same paradigm but with the addition of synchronous vocoded acoustic speech impeded VO learning of the stimuli in the paired-associates paradigm. In Experiment 3, the vocoded AO stimuli were shown to be less informative than the VO speech. Experiment 4 combined vibrotactile speech stimuli with the visual stimuli during training. Vibrotactile stimuli were shown to promote visual perceptual learning. In Experiment 5, no-training controls were used to show that training with visual speech carried over to consonant identification of untrained CVCVC stimuli but not to lipreading words in sentences. Across this and previous studies, multisensory training effects depended on the functional relationship between pathways engaged during training. Two principles are proposed to account for stimulus effects: (1) Stimuli presented to the trainee's primary perceptual pathway will impede learning by a lower-rank pathway. (2) Stimuli presented to the trainee's lower rank perceptual pathway will promote learning by a higher-rank pathway. The mechanisms supporting these principles are discussed in light of multisensory reverse hierarchy theory (RHT).

  16. Inclusion of blind and visually impaired people into program activities of the open-air museum - case study tactile heritage

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bogdanović Bojana

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The paper featuring the project Tactile Heritage, implemented in 2015 at the Open-air Museum “Old Village” in Sirogojno, revises the process of inclusion of blind and visually impaired people in the program activities of the open-air museum. The current museum practice in Serbia shows that insufficient attention is paid to the groups of people for whom the museum activities are partially (or fully (unavaliable and those who do not take part in museum activities (by their or other people's will. The aim of the paper is to draw attention to the possibilities of improving availability and quality of museum content to people with disabilities. However, due to the studious presentation, the paper provides general overview of the legal and statutory regulations as well as specific and important concepts that are key to the system of general museology, which in their totality contribute to the improvement of modern museum practice. In accordance with the principles of new museology that attempts to break the two-century long tradition of exclusivity and elitism of museological work, the project Tactile Heritage demonstrates that the museum communication can (and must balance between the peculiarities and constraints of users as well as specificities and possibilities of the new media.

  17. Effectiveness of braille and audio-tactile performance technique for improving oral hygiene status of visually impaired adolescents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deshpande, Sushmita; Rajpurohit, Ladusingh; Kokka, Vivian Varghese

    2017-01-01

    Visually impaired people encounter numerous challenges in their daily life which makes it a cumbersome task to pay special attention to oral health needs. Furthermore, there is little knowledge about oral health practices among caretakers and visually impaired individuals, due to which oral health is often neglected when compared to the general health. Hence, there was a need to educate visually challenged individuals about oral hygiene practices in a customized format so that the comprehension of brushing techniques could be conveyed at its best. The present study was a randomized control trial of sixty visually impaired adolescents who were divided into three groups of 20 each. In Group 1, Braille was used, whereas in Group 2, audio-tactile performance (ATP) technique and in Group 3, a combination of both the methods were used to teach tooth brushing as a part of oral health education. Pre- and post-plaque index score using Silness and Loe (1967) after health education were calculated and tabulated for statistical analysis. The postintervention mean plaque index score increased in Group 1 from 29.45 to 42.98, whereas the mean plaque score decreased in Groups 2 and 3 from 30.83-29.9 to 30.23-18.73, respectively. Intergroup comparison of postplaque index score using Kruskal-Wallis and ANOVA analysis showed significant difference among all three study groups. The combination of Braille and ATP technique of health education served as the most effective medium to teach oral hygiene methods to visually impaired adolescents.

  18. Comparison of visual and tactile learning in octopus after lesions to one of the two memory systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bradley, E A; Young, J Z

    1975-01-01

    Sets of animals with lesions to either the vertical lobe or median inferior frontal lobe were trained first visually and then by touch. Lesions of the vertical lobe system did not affect the increase produced by food in tendency to attack a moving figure in the visual field. Any lesion that interrupted the circuit through the vertical lobe greatly impaired the capacity to inhibit attacks on crabs when these attacks resulted in shocks. Removal of the median inferior frontal lobe did not impair this capacity to learn not to attack a crab in the octopus's visual field. The capacity to learn to respond positively to a black disc but to avoid a white one was grossly impaired by an interruption of the vertical lobe circuit. After such operations the animals showed a strong preference for white over black. The capacity to learn to discriminate between black and white was not affected by removal of the median inferior frontal lobe. Animals with interruptions of the vertical lobe circuit could learn to make discrimination between white as a positive figure and black as a negative one, but they made more mistakes than controls. Most mistakes consisted of attacks on the negative (black) figure, but there were also some failures to attack the white. In tactile discrimination between rough and smooth spheres given successively, animals with vertical lobe lesions were, under some circumstances, less accurate than controls. They took more objects than controls. They were less able than controls to reverse the the discrimination. After removal of the median inferior frontal lobe tactile discrimination was greatly impaired. The animals showed a strong preference for rough objects and could not learn to take smooth objects. However, they showed improvement in discrimination when trained with smooth negative and are therefore not wholly incapable of long-term memory storage.

  19. Exploration of the Effectiveness of Tactile Methods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aldajani, Neda F.

    2016-01-01

    This paper introduces the tactile method and aims to explore the effectiveness of using tactile methods with students who are blind and visually impaired. Although there was limited research about using this strategy, all of the research agrees that using tactile is one of the best ways for students who are blind and visually impaired to be…

  20. Tactile sensitivity of blind and visually impaired children and adolescents. The significance of swimming exercises

    OpenAIRE

    Rostkowska, Elżbieta; Maśnik, Elżbieta

    2001-01-01

    The im of the study is to compare the tactile sensitivity threshold (TST) of the blind children who practice swimming and those who do not practice any sports with the TST of healthy people of similar age. TST was measured on the pad of he index finger of the dominant hand using an aesthesiometer. Lower TST was found in blind girls compared to healthy girls as well as lower TST in blind girls who practice swimming compared to the blind girls who do not practice ane sports. A significant lower...

  1. Verifying visual properties in sentence verification facilitates picture recognition memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pecher, Diane; Zanolie, Kiki; Zeelenberg, René

    2007-01-01

    According to the perceptual symbols theory (Barsalou, 1999), sensorimotor simulations underlie the representation of concepts. We investigated whether recognition memory for pictures of concepts was facilitated by earlier representation of visual properties of those concepts. During study, concept names (e.g., apple) were presented in a property verification task with a visual property (e.g., shiny) or with a nonvisual property (e.g., tart). Delayed picture recognition memory was better if the concept name had been presented with a visual property than if it had been presented with a nonvisual property. These results indicate that modality-specific simulations are used for concept representation.

  2. Utility estimation of the application of auditory-visual-tactile sense feedback in respiratory gated radiation therapy

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jo, Jung Hun; KIm, Byeong Jin; Roh, Shi Won; Lee, Hyeon Chan; Jang, Hyeong Jun; Kim, Hoi Nam [Dept. of Radiation Oncology, Biomedical Engineering, Seoul St. Mary' s Hospital, Seoul (Korea, Republic of); Song, Jae Hoon [Dept. of Biomedical Engineering, Seoul St. Mary' s Hospital, Seoul (Korea, Republic of); Kim, Young Jae [Dept. of Radiological Technology, Gwang Yang Health Collage, Gwangyang (Korea, Republic of)

    2013-03-15

    The purpose of this study was to evaluate the possibility to optimize the gated treatment delivery time and maintenance of stable respiratory by the introduction of breath with the assistance of auditory-visual-tactile sense. The experimenter's respiration were measured by ANZAI 4D system. We obtained natural breathing signal, monitor-induced breathing signal, monitor and ventilator-induced breathing signal, and breath-hold signal using real time monitor during 10 minutes beam-on-time. In order to check the stability of respiratory signals distributed in each group were compared with means, standard deviation, variation value, beam{sub t}ime of the respiratory signal. The stability of each respiratory was measured in consideration of deviation change studied in each respiratory time lapse. As a result of an analysis of respiratory signal, all experimenters has showed that breathing signal used both Real time monitor and Ventilator was the most stable and shortest time. In this study, it was evaluated that respiratory gated radiation therapy with auditory-visual-tactual sense and without auditory-visual-tactual sense feedback. The study showed that respiratory gated radiation therapy delivery time could significantly be improved by the application of video feedback when this is combined with audio-tactual sense assistance. This delivery technique did prove its feasibility to limit the tumor motion during treatment delivery for all patients to a defined value while maintaining the accuracy and proved the applicability of the technique in a conventional clinical schedule.

  3. Utility estimation of the application of auditory-visual-tactile sense feedback in respiratory gated radiation therapy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jo, Jung Hun; KIm, Byeong Jin; Roh, Shi Won; Lee, Hyeon Chan; Jang, Hyeong Jun; Kim, Hoi Nam; Song, Jae Hoon; Kim, Young Jae

    2013-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to evaluate the possibility to optimize the gated treatment delivery time and maintenance of stable respiratory by the introduction of breath with the assistance of auditory-visual-tactile sense. The experimenter's respiration were measured by ANZAI 4D system. We obtained natural breathing signal, monitor-induced breathing signal, monitor and ventilator-induced breathing signal, and breath-hold signal using real time monitor during 10 minutes beam-on-time. In order to check the stability of respiratory signals distributed in each group were compared with means, standard deviation, variation value, beam t ime of the respiratory signal. The stability of each respiratory was measured in consideration of deviation change studied in each respiratory time lapse. As a result of an analysis of respiratory signal, all experimenters has showed that breathing signal used both Real time monitor and Ventilator was the most stable and shortest time. In this study, it was evaluated that respiratory gated radiation therapy with auditory-visual-tactual sense and without auditory-visual-tactual sense feedback. The study showed that respiratory gated radiation therapy delivery time could significantly be improved by the application of video feedback when this is combined with audio-tactual sense assistance. This delivery technique did prove its feasibility to limit the tumor motion during treatment delivery for all patients to a defined value while maintaining the accuracy and proved the applicability of the technique in a conventional clinical schedule

  4. Exposure to arousal-inducing sounds facilitates visual search.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Asutay, Erkin; Västfjäll, Daniel

    2017-09-04

    Exposure to affective stimuli could enhance perception and facilitate attention via increasing alertness, vigilance, and by decreasing attentional thresholds. However, evidence on the impact of affective sounds on perception and attention is scant. Here, a novel aspect of affective facilitation of attention is studied: whether arousal induced by task-irrelevant auditory stimuli could modulate attention in a visual search. In two experiments, participants performed a visual search task with and without auditory-cues that preceded the search. Participants were faster in locating high-salient targets compared to low-salient targets. Critically, search times and search slopes decreased with increasing auditory-induced arousal while searching for low-salient targets. Taken together, these findings suggest that arousal induced by sounds can facilitate attention in a subsequent visual search. This novel finding provides support for the alerting function of the auditory system by showing an auditory-phasic alerting effect in visual attention. The results also indicate that stimulus arousal modulates the alerting effect. Attention and perception are our everyday tools to navigate our surrounding world and the current findings showing that affective sounds could influence visual attention provide evidence that we make use of affective information during perceptual processing.

  5. Effectiveness of braille and audio-tactile performance technique for improving oral hygiene status of visually impaired adolescents

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sushmita Deshpande

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Background: Visually impaired people encounter numerous challenges in their daily life which makes it a cumbersome task to pay special attention to oral health needs. Furthermore, there is little knowledge about oral health practices among caretakers and visually impaired individuals, due to which oral health is often neglected when compared to the general health. Hence, there was a need to educate visually challenged individuals about oral hygiene practices in a customized format so that the comprehension of brushing techniques could be conveyed at its best. Materials and Methods: The present study was a randomized control trial of sixty visually impaired adolescents who were divided into three groups of 20 each. In Group 1, Braille was used, whereas in Group 2, audio-tactile performance (ATP technique and in Group 3, a combination of both the methods were used to teach tooth brushing as a part of oral health education. Pre- and post-plaque index score using Silness and Loe (1967 after health education were calculated and tabulated for statistical analysis. Results: The postintervention mean plaque index score increased in Group 1 from 29.45 to 42.98, whereas the mean plaque score decreased in Groups 2 and 3 from 30.83–29.9 to 30.23–18.73, respectively. Intergroup comparison of postplaque index score using Kruskal–Wallis and ANOVA analysis showed significant difference among all three study groups. Conclusion: The combination of Braille and ATP technique of health education served as the most effective medium to teach oral hygiene methods to visually impaired adolescents.

  6. Comparison of tactile, auditory and visual modality for brain-computer interface use: A case study with a patient in the locked-in state

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tobias eKaufmann

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available This paper describes a case study with a patient in the classic locked-in state, who currently has no means of independent communication. Following a user-centered approach, we investigated event-related potentials elicited in different modalities for use in brain-computer interface systems. Such systems could provide her with an alternative communication channel. To investigate the most viable modality for achieving BCI based communication, classic oddball paradigms (1 rare and 1 frequent stimulus, ratio 1:5 in the visual, auditory and tactile modality were conducted (2 runs per modality. Classifiers were built on one run and tested offline on another run (and vice versa. In these paradigms, the tactile modality was clearly superior to other modalities, displaying high offline accuracy even when classification was performed on single trials only. Consequently, we tested the tactile paradigm online and the patient successfully selected targets without any error. Furthermore, we investigated use of the visual or tactile modality for different BCI systems with more than two selection options. In the visual modality, several BCI paradigms were tested offline. Neither matrix-based nor so-called gaze-independent paradigms constituted a means of control. These results may thus question the gaze-independence of current gaze-independent approaches to BCI. A tactile four-choice BCI resulted in high offline classification accuracies. Yet, online use raised various issues. Although performance was clearly above chance, practical daily life use appeared unlikely when compared to other communication approaches (e.g. partner scanning. Our results emphasize the need for user-centered design in BCI development including identification of the best stimulus modality for a particular user. Finally, the paper discusses feasibility of EEG-based BCI systems for patients in classic locked-in state and compares BCI to other AT solutions that we also tested during the

  7. Comparison of tactile, auditory, and visual modality for brain-computer interface use: a case study with a patient in the locked-in state.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaufmann, Tobias; Holz, Elisa M; Kübler, Andrea

    2013-01-01

    This paper describes a case study with a patient in the classic locked-in state, who currently has no means of independent communication. Following a user-centered approach, we investigated event-related potentials (ERP) elicited in different modalities for use in brain-computer interface (BCI) systems. Such systems could provide her with an alternative communication channel. To investigate the most viable modality for achieving BCI based communication, classic oddball paradigms (1 rare and 1 frequent stimulus, ratio 1:5) in the visual, auditory and tactile modality were conducted (2 runs per modality). Classifiers were built on one run and tested offline on another run (and vice versa). In these paradigms, the tactile modality was clearly superior to other modalities, displaying high offline accuracy even when classification was performed on single trials only. Consequently, we tested the tactile paradigm online and the patient successfully selected targets without any error. Furthermore, we investigated use of the visual or tactile modality for different BCI systems with more than two selection options. In the visual modality, several BCI paradigms were tested offline. Neither matrix-based nor so-called gaze-independent paradigms constituted a means of control. These results may thus question the gaze-independence of current gaze-independent approaches to BCI. A tactile four-choice BCI resulted in high offline classification accuracies. Yet, online use raised various issues. Although performance was clearly above chance, practical daily life use appeared unlikely when compared to other communication approaches (e.g., partner scanning). Our results emphasize the need for user-centered design in BCI development including identification of the best stimulus modality for a particular user. Finally, the paper discusses feasibility of EEG-based BCI systems for patients in classic locked-in state and compares BCI to other AT solutions that we also tested during the

  8. Investigating the time course of tactile reflexive attention using a non-spatial discrimination task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miles, Eleanor; Poliakoff, Ellen; Brown, Richard J

    2008-06-01

    Peripheral cues are thought to facilitate responses to stimuli presented at the same location because they lead to exogenous attention shifts. Facilitation has been observed in numerous studies of visual and auditory attention, but there have been only four demonstrations of tactile facilitation, all in studies with potential confounds. Three studies used a spatial (finger versus thumb) discrimination task, where the cue could have provided a spatial framework that might have assisted the discrimination of subsequent targets presented on the same side as the cue. The final study circumvented this problem by using a non-spatial discrimination; however, the cues were informative and interspersed with visual cues which may have affected the attentional effects observed. In the current study, therefore, we used a non-spatial tactile frequency discrimination task following a non-informative tactile white noise cue. When the target was presented 150 ms after the cue, we observed faster discrimination responses to targets presented on the same side compared to the opposite side as the cue; by 1000 ms, responses were significantly faster to targets presented on the opposite side to the cue. Thus, we demonstrated that tactile attentional facilitation can be observed in a non-spatial discrimination task, under unimodal conditions and with entirely non-predictive cues. Furthermore, we provide the first demonstration of significant tactile facilitation and tactile inhibition of return within a single experiment.

  9. Development and Analysis of New 3D Tactile Materials for the Enhancement of STEM Education for the Blind and Visually Impaired

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gonzales, Ashleigh

    Blind and visually impaired individuals have historically demonstrated a low participation in the fields of science, engineering, mathematics, and technology (STEM). This low participation is reflected in both their education and career choices. Despite the establishment of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), blind and visually impaired (BVI) students continue to academically fall below the level of their sighted peers in the areas of science and math. Although this deficit is created by many factors, this study focuses on the lack of adequate accessible image based materials. Traditional methods for creating accessible image materials for the vision impaired have included detailed verbal descriptions accompanying an image or conversion into a simplified tactile graphic. It is very common that no substitute materials will be provided to students within STEM courses because they are image rich disciplines and often include a large number images, diagrams and charts. Additionally, images that are translated into text or simplified into basic line drawings are frequently inadequate because they rely on the interpretations of resource personnel who do not have expertise in STEM. Within this study, a method to create a new type of tactile 3D image was developed using High Density Polyethylene (HDPE) and Computer Numeric Control (CNC) milling. These tactile image boards preserve high levels of detail when compared to the original print image. To determine the discernibility and effectiveness of tactile images, these customizable boards were tested in various university classrooms as well as in participation studies which included BVI and sighted students. Results from these studies indicate that tactile images are discernable and were found to improve performance in lab exercises as much as 60% for those with visual impairment. Incorporating tactile HDPE 3D images into a classroom setting was shown to

  10. Augmented Reality as a Visualizing facilitator in Nursing Education

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rahn, Annette; Kjærgaard, Hanne Wacher

    2014-01-01

    Title: Augmented Reality as a visualizing facilitator in nursing education Background: Understanding the workings of the biological human body is as complex as the body itself, and because of their complexity, the phenomena of respiration and lung anatomy pose a special problem for nursing students......’ understanding within anatomy and physiology. Aim: Against this background, the current project set out to investigate how and to what extent the application of augmented reality (AR) could help students gain a better understanding through an increased focus on contextualized visualization. The overall aim...

  11. Effects of Visual, Auditory, and Tactile Navigation Cues on Navigation Performance, Situation Awareness, and Mental Workload

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Davis, Bradley M

    2007-01-01

    .... Results from both experiments indicate that augmented visual displays reduced time to complete navigation, maintained situation awareness, and drastically reduced mental workload in comparison...

  12. Learning without knowing: subliminal visual feedback facilitates ballistic motor learning

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lundbye-Jensen, Jesper; Leukel, Christian; Nielsen, Jens Bo

    by subconscious (subliminal) augmented visual feedback on motor performance. To test this, 45 subjects participated in the experiment, which involved learning of a ballistic task. The task was to execute simple ankle plantar flexion movements as quickly as possible within 200 ms and to continuously improve...... by the learner, indeed facilitated ballistic motor learning. This effect likely relates to multiple (conscious versus unconscious) processing of visual feedback and to the specific neural circuitries involved in optimization of ballistic motor performance.......). It is a well- described phenomenon that we may respond to features of our surroundings without being aware of them. It is also a well-known principle, that learning is reinforced by augmented feedback on motor performance. In the present experiment we hypothesized that motor learning may be facilitated...

  13. Emotional facilitation of sensory processing in the visual cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schupp, Harald T; Junghöfer, Markus; Weike, Almut I; Hamm, Alfons O

    2003-01-01

    A key function of emotion is the preparation for action. However, organization of successful behavioral strategies depends on efficient stimulus encoding. The present study tested the hypothesis that perceptual encoding in the visual cortex is modulated by the emotional significance of visual stimuli. Event-related brain potentials were measured while subjects viewed pleasant, neutral, and unpleasant pictures. Early selective encoding of pleasant and unpleasant images was associated with a posterior negativity, indicating primary sources of activation in the visual cortex. The study also replicated previous findings in that affective cues also elicited enlarged late positive potentials, indexing increased stimulus relevance at higher-order stages of stimulus processing. These results support the hypothesis that sensory encoding of affective stimuli is facilitated implicitly by natural selective attention. Thus, the affect system not only modulates motor output (i.e., favoring approach or avoidance dispositions), but already operates at an early level of sensory encoding.

  14. Comparison of a Visual and Head Tactile Display for Soldier Navigation

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-12-01

    environments for nuclear power plant operators, air traffic controllers, and pilots are information intensive. These environments usually involve the indirect...queue, correcting aircraft conflicts, giving instruction, clearance and advice to pilots , and assigning aircrafts to other work queues and airports...these dynamic, complex, and multitask environments (1) collect and integrate a plethora of visual information into decisions that are critical for

  15. What You Don't Notice Can Harm You: Age-Related Differences in Detecting Concurrent Visual, Auditory, and Tactile Cues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pitts, Brandon J; Sarter, Nadine

    2018-06-01

    Objective This research sought to determine whether people can perceive and process three nonredundant (and unrelated) signals in vision, hearing, and touch at the same time and how aging and concurrent task demands affect this ability. Background Multimodal displays have been shown to improve multitasking and attention management; however, their potential limitations are not well understood. The majority of studies on multimodal information presentation have focused on the processing of only two concurrent and, most often, redundant cues by younger participants. Method Two experiments were conducted in which younger and older adults detected and responded to a series of singles, pairs, and triplets of visual, auditory, and tactile cues in the absence (Experiment 1) and presence (Experiment 2) of an ongoing simulated driving task. Detection rates, response times, and driving task performance were measured. Results Compared to younger participants, older adults showed longer response times and higher error rates in response to cues/cue combinations. Older participants often missed the tactile cue when three cues were combined. They sometimes falsely reported the presence of a visual cue when presented with a pair of auditory and tactile signals. Driving performance suffered most in the presence of cue triplets. Conclusion People are more likely to miss information if more than two concurrent nonredundant signals are presented to different sensory channels. Application The findings from this work help inform the design of multimodal displays and ensure their usefulness across different age groups and in various application domains.

  16. Four Data Visualization Heuristics to Facilitate Reflection in Personal Informatics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cuttone, Andrea; Petersen, Michael Kai; Larsen, Jakob Eg

    2014-01-01

    In this paper we discuss how to facilitate the process of reflection in Personal Informatics and Quantified Self systems through interactive data visualizations. Four heuristics for the design and evaluation of such systems have been identified through analysis of self-tracking devices and apps....... Dashboard interface paradigms in specific self-tracking devices (Fitbit and Basis) are discussed as representative examples of state of the art in feedback and reflection support. By relating to existing work in other domains, such as event related representation of time series multivariate data...... in financial analytics, it is discussed how the heuristics could guide designs that would further facilitate reflection in self-tracking personal informatics systems....

  17. Neural substrates of reliability-weighted visual-tactile multisensory integration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael S Beauchamp

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available As sensory systems deteriorate in aging or disease, the brain must relearn the appropriate weights to assign each modality during multisensory integration. Using blood-oxygen level dependent functional magnetic resonance imaging (BOLD fMRI of human subjects, we tested a model for the neural mechanisms of sensory weighting, termed “weighted connections”. This model holds that the connection weights between early and late areas vary depending on the reliability of the modality, independent of the level of early sensory cortex activity. When subjects detected viewed and felt touches to the hand, a network of brain areas was active, including visual areas in lateral occipital cortex, somatosensory areas in inferior parietal lobe, and multisensory areas in the intraparietal sulcus (IPS. In agreement with the weighted connection model, the connection weight measured with structural equation modeling between somatosensory cortex and IPS increased for somatosensory-reliable stimuli, and the connection weight between visual cortex and IPS increased for visual-reliable stimuli. This double dissociation of connection strengths was similar to the pattern of behavioral responses during incongruent multisensory stimulation, suggesting that weighted connections may be a neural mechanism for behavioral reliability weighting.for behavioral reliability weighting.

  18. A Tactile Carina Nebula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grice, Noreen A.; Mutchler, M.

    2010-01-01

    Astronomy was once considered a science restricted to fully sighted participants. But in the past two decades, accessible books with large print/Braille and touchable pictures have brought astronomy and space science to the hands and mind's eye of students, regardless of their visual ability. A new universally-designed tactile image featuring the Hubble mosaic of the Carina Nebula is being presented at this conference. The original dataset was obtained with Hubble's Advanced Camera for Surveys (ACS) hydrogen-alpha filter in 2005. It became an instant icon after being infused with additional color information from ground-based CTIO data, and released as Hubble's 17th anniversary image. Our tactile Carina Nebula promotes multi-mode learning about the entire life-cycle of stars, which is dramatically illustrated in this Hubble mosaic. When combined with descriptive text in print and Braille, the visual and tactile components seamlessly reach both sighted and blind populations. Specific touchable features of the tactile image identify the shapes and orientations of objects in the Carina Nebula that include star-forming regions, jets, pillars, dark and light globules, star clusters, shocks/bubbles, the Keyhole Nebula, and stellar death (Eta Carinae). Visit our poster paper to touch the Carina Nebula!

  19. How Formal Dynamic Verification Tools Facilitate Novel Concurrency Visualizations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aananthakrishnan, Sriram; Delisi, Michael; Vakkalanka, Sarvani; Vo, Anh; Gopalakrishnan, Ganesh; Kirby, Robert M.; Thakur, Rajeev

    With the exploding scale of concurrency, presenting valuable pieces of information collected by formal verification tools intuitively and graphically can greatly enhance concurrent system debugging. Traditional MPI program debuggers present trace views of MPI program executions. Such views are redundant, often containing equivalent traces that permute independent MPI calls. In our ISP formal dynamic verifier for MPI programs, we present a collection of alternate views made possible by the use of formal dynamic verification. Some of ISP’s views help pinpoint errors, some facilitate discerning errors by eliminating redundancy, while others help understand the program better by displaying concurrent even orderings that must be respected by all MPI implementations, in the form of completes-before graphs. In this paper, we describe ISP’s graphical user interface (GUI) capabilities in all these areas which are currently supported by a portable Java based GUI, a Microsoft Visual Studio GUI, and an Eclipse based GUI whose development is in progress.

  20. Tactile Earth and Space Science Materials for Students with Visual Impairments: Contours, Craters, Asteroids, and Features of Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rule, Audrey C.

    2011-01-01

    New tactile curriculum materials for teaching Earth and planetary science lessons on rotation=revolution, silhouettes of objects from different views, contour maps, impact craters, asteroids, and topographic features of Mars to 11 elementary and middle school students with sight impairments at a week-long residential summer camp are presented…

  1. Integration of force reflection with tactile sensing for minimally invasive robotics-assisted tumor localization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Talasaz, A; Patel, R V

    2013-01-01

    Tactile sensing and force reflection have been the subject of considerable research for tumor localization in soft-tissue palpation. The work presented in this paper investigates the relevance of force feedback (presented visually as well as directly) during tactile sensing (presented visually only) for tumor localization using an experimental setup close to one that could be applied for real robotics-assisted minimally invasive surgery. The setup is a teleoperated (master-slave) system facilitated with a state-of-the-art minimally invasive probe with a rigidly mounted tactile sensor at the tip and an externally mounted force sensor at the base of the probe. The objective is to capture the tactile information and measure the interaction forces between the probe and tissue during palpation and to explore how they can be integrated to improve the performance of tumor localization. To quantitatively explore the effect of force feedback on tactile sensing tumor localization, several experiments were conducted by human subjects to locate artificial tumors embedded in the ex vivo bovine livers. The results show that using tactile sensing in a force-controlled environment can realize, on average, 57 percent decrease in the maximum force and 55 percent decrease in the average force applied to tissue while increasing the tumor detection accuracy by up to 50 percent compared to the case of using tactile feedback alone. The results also show that while visual presentation of force feedback gives straightforward quantitative measures, improved performance of tactile sensing tumor localization is achieved at the expense of longer times for the user. Also, the quickness and intuitive data mapping of direct force feedback makes it more appealing to experienced users.

  2. Supramodal Theta, Gamma, and Sustained Fields Predict Modality-specific Modulations of Alpha and Beta Oscillations during Visual and Tactile Working Memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Ede, Freek; Jensen, Ole; Maris, Eric

    2017-08-01

    Flexible control over currently relevant sensory representations is an essential feature of primate cognition. We investigated the neurophysiological bases of such flexible control in humans during an intermodal working memory task in which participants retained visual or tactile sequences. Using magnetoencephalography, we first show that working memory retention engages early visual and somatosensory areas, as reflected in the sustained load-dependent suppression of alpha and beta oscillations. Next, we identify three components that are also load dependent but modality independent: medial prefrontal theta synchronization, frontoparietal gamma synchronization, and sustained parietal event-related fields. Critically, these domain-general components predict (across trials and within load conditions) the modality-specific suppression of alpha and beta oscillations, with largely unique contributions per component. Thus, working memory engages multiple complementary frontoparietal components that have discernible neuronal dynamics and that flexibly modulate retention-related activity in sensory areas in a manner that tracks the current contents of working memory.

  3. Dental Students’ Preference with regard to Tactile or Visual Determination of Injection Site for an Inferior Alveolar Nerve Block in Children: A Crossover Randomized Clinical Trial

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nahid Ramazani

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Objectives: Instruction of local anesthesia injection in an important part of dental education curricula. This study was performed to compare dental students’ preference with regard to tactile or visual determination of injection site for an inferior alveolar nerve block (IANB in children.Materials and Methods: This crossover randomized clinical trial was conducted on dental students of Zahedan Dental School who took the first practical course of pediatric dentistry in the first academic semester of 2013-14 (n=42. They were randomly divided into two groups. During the first phase, group I was instructed to find the needle insertion point for an IANB via tactile method and group II was instructed to do it visually. In the second phase, the groups received instructions for the alternate technique. Both instructions were done using live demonstrations by the same instructor and immediately after instruction the learners practiced an IANB using the taught method. A five-point Likert scale questionnaire was then filled out by the students. The preference score was determined by calculating the mean of item scores. Data were analyzed using Mann-Whitney U and Wilcoxon Singed Rank tests in SPSS 19 at P=0.05 level of significance.Results: Thirty-eight students completed the study. By using the visual method to perform an IANB, students gained a significantly higher mean preference score (P=0.020. There was a significant difference in the preference of male students (P=0.008.Conclusions: Instruction of IANB by visual identification of needle insertion point is more desirable by students. 

  4. Tactile Aids

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohtaramossadat Homayuni

    1996-04-01

    Full Text Available Tactile aids, which translate sound waves into vibrations that can be felt by the skin, have been used for decades by people with severe/profound hearing loss to enhance speech/language development and improve speechreading.The development of tactile aids dates from the efforts of Goults and his co-workers in the 1920s; Although The power supply was too voluminous and it was difficult to carry specially by children, it was too huge and heavy to be carried outside the laboratories and its application was restricted to the experimental usage. Nowadays great advances have been performed in producing this instrument and its numerous models is available in markets around the world.

  5. Real-time vision, tactile cues, and visual form agnosia in pantomimed grasping: removing haptic feedback induces a switch from natural to pantomime-like grasps

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert Leslie Whitwell

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Investigators study the kinematics of grasping movements (prehension under a variety of conditions to probe visuomotor function in normal and brain-damaged individuals. When patient DF, who suffers from visual form agnosia, performs natural grasps, her in-flight hand aperture is scaled to the widths of targets ('grip scaling' that she cannot discriminate amongst. In contrast, when DF's pantomime grasps are based on a memory of a previewed object, her grip scaling is very poor. Her failure on this task has been interpreted as additional support for the dissociation between the use of object vision for action and object vision for perception. Curiously, however, when DF directs her pantomimed grasps towards a displaced imagined copy of a visible object where her fingers make contact with the surface of the table, her grip scaling does not appear to be particularly poor. In the first of two experiments, we revisit this previous work and show that her grip scaling in this real-time pantomime grasping task does not differ from controls, suggesting that terminal tactile feedback from a proxy of the target can maintain DF's grip scaling. In a second experiment with healthy participants, we tested a recent variant of a grasping task in which no tactile feedback is available (i.e. no haptic feedback by comparing the kinematics of target-directed grasps with and without haptic feedback to those of real-time pantomime grasps without haptic feedback. Compared to natural grasps, removing haptic feedback increased RT, slowed the velocity of the reach, reduced grip aperture, sharpened the slopes relating grip aperture to target width, and reduced the final grip aperture. All of these effects were also observed in the pantomime grasping task. Taken together, these results provide compelling support for the view that removing haptic feedback induces a switch from real-time visual control to one that depends more on visual perception and cognitive supervision.

  6. Visual working memory simultaneously guides facilitation and inhibition during visual search.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dube, Blaire; Basciano, April; Emrich, Stephen M; Al-Aidroos, Naseem

    2016-07-01

    During visual search, visual working memory (VWM) supports the guidance of attention in two ways: It stores the identity of the search target, facilitating the selection of matching stimuli in the search array, and it maintains a record of the distractors processed during search so that they can be inhibited. In two experiments, we investigated whether the full contents of VWM can be used to support both of these abilities simultaneously. In Experiment 1, participants completed a preview search task in which (a) a subset of search distractors appeared before the remainder of the search items, affording participants the opportunity to inhibit them, and (b) the search target varied from trial to trial, requiring the search target template to be maintained in VWM. We observed the established signature of VWM-based inhibition-reduced ability to ignore previewed distractors when the number of distractors exceeds VWM's capacity-suggesting that VWM can serve this role while also representing the target template. In Experiment 2, we replicated Experiment 1, but added to the search displays a singleton distractor that sometimes matched the color (a task-irrelevant feature) of the search target, to evaluate capture. We again observed the signature of VWM-based preview inhibition along with attentional capture by (and, thus, facilitation of) singletons matching the target template. These findings indicate that more than one VWM representation can bias attention at a time, and that these representations can separately affect selection through either facilitation or inhibition, placing constraints on existing models of the VWM-based guidance of attention.

  7. Visual Landmarks Facilitate Rodent Spatial Navigation in Virtual Reality Environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Youngstrom, Isaac A.; Strowbridge, Ben W.

    2012-01-01

    Because many different sensory modalities contribute to spatial learning in rodents, it has been difficult to determine whether spatial navigation can be guided solely by visual cues. Rodents moving within physical environments with visual cues engage a variety of nonvisual sensory systems that cannot be easily inhibited without lesioning brain…

  8. Visual Grouping in Accordance With Utterance Planning Facilitates Speech Production

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liming Zhao

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Research on language production has focused on the process of utterance planning and involved studying the synchronization between visual gaze and the production of sentences that refer to objects in the immediate visual environment. However, it remains unclear how the visual grouping of these objects might influence this process. To shed light on this issue, the present research examined the effects of the visual grouping of objects in a visual display on utterance planning in two experiments. Participants produced utterances of the form “The snail and the necklace are above/below/on the left/right side of the toothbrush” for objects containing these referents (e.g., a snail, a necklace and a toothbrush. These objects were grouped using classic Gestalt principles of color similarity (Experiment 1 and common region (Experiment 2 so that the induced perceptual grouping was congruent or incongruent with the required phrasal organization. The results showed that speech onset latencies were shorter in congruent than incongruent conditions. The findings therefore reveal that the congruency between the visual grouping of referents and the required phrasal organization can influence speech production. Such findings suggest that, when language is produced in a visual context, speakers make use of both visual and linguistic cues to plan utterances.

  9. Visual Grouping in Accordance With Utterance Planning Facilitates Speech Production.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Liming; Paterson, Kevin B; Bai, Xuejun

    2018-01-01

    Research on language production has focused on the process of utterance planning and involved studying the synchronization between visual gaze and the production of sentences that refer to objects in the immediate visual environment. However, it remains unclear how the visual grouping of these objects might influence this process. To shed light on this issue, the present research examined the effects of the visual grouping of objects in a visual display on utterance planning in two experiments. Participants produced utterances of the form "The snail and the necklace are above/below/on the left/right side of the toothbrush" for objects containing these referents (e.g., a snail, a necklace and a toothbrush). These objects were grouped using classic Gestalt principles of color similarity (Experiment 1) and common region (Experiment 2) so that the induced perceptual grouping was congruent or incongruent with the required phrasal organization. The results showed that speech onset latencies were shorter in congruent than incongruent conditions. The findings therefore reveal that the congruency between the visual grouping of referents and the required phrasal organization can influence speech production. Such findings suggest that, when language is produced in a visual context, speakers make use of both visual and linguistic cues to plan utterances.

  10. Benefits of stimulus congruency for multisensory facilitation of visual learning.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robyn S Kim

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Studies of perceptual learning have largely focused on unisensory stimuli. However, multisensory interactions are ubiquitous in perception, even at early processing stages, and thus can potentially play a role in learning. Here, we examine the effect of auditory-visual congruency on visual learning. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPLE FINDINGS: Subjects were trained over five days on a visual motion coherence detection task with either congruent audiovisual, or incongruent audiovisual stimuli. Comparing performance on visual-only trials, we find that training with congruent audiovisual stimuli produces significantly better learning than training with incongruent audiovisual stimuli or with only visual stimuli. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: This advantage from stimulus congruency during training suggests that the benefits of multisensory training may result from audiovisual interactions at a perceptual rather than cognitive level.

  11. The Effect of Programmable Tactile Displays on Spatial Learning Skills in Children and Adolescents of Different Visual Disability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leo, Fabrizio; Cocchi, Elena; Brayda, Luca

    2017-07-01

    Vision loss has severe impacts on physical, social and emotional well-being. The education of blind children poses issues as many scholar disciplines (e.g., geometry, mathematics) are normally taught by heavily relying on vision. Touch-based assistive technologies are potential tools to provide graphical contents to blind users, improving learning possibilities and social inclusion. Raised-lines drawings are still the golden standard, but stimuli cannot be reconfigured or adapted and the blind person constantly requires assistance. Although much research concerns technological development, little work concerned the assessment of programmable tactile graphics, in educative and rehabilitative contexts. Here we designed, on programmable tactile displays, tests aimed at assessing spatial memory skills and shapes recognition abilities. Tests involved a group of blind and a group of low vision children and adolescents in a four-week longitudinal schedule. After establishing subject-specific difficulty levels, we observed a significant enhancement of performance across sessions and for both groups. Learning effects were comparable to raised paper control tests: however, our setup required minimal external assistance. Overall, our results demonstrate that programmable maps are an effective way to display graphical contents in educative/rehabilitative contexts. They can be at least as effective as traditional paper tests yet providing superior flexibility and versatility.

  12. Can Visual Illusions Be Used to Facilitate Sport Skill Learning?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cañal-Bruland, Rouwen; van der Meer, Yor; Moerman, Jelle

    2016-01-01

    Recently it has been reported that practicing putting with visual illusions that make the hole appear larger than it actually is leads to longer-lasting performance improvements. Interestingly, from a motor control and learning perspective, it may be possible to actually predict the opposite to occur, as facing a smaller appearing target should enforce performers to be more precise. To test this idea the authors invited participants to practice an aiming task (i.e., a marble-shooting task) with either a visual illusion that made the target appear larger or a visual illusion that made the target appear smaller. They applied a pre-post test design, included a control group training without any illusory effects and increased the amount of practice to 450 trials. In contrast to earlier reports, the results revealed that the group that trained with the visual illusion that made the target look smaller improved performance from pre- to posttest, whereas the group practicing with visual illusions that made the target appear larger did not show any improvements. Notably, also the control group improved from pre- to posttest. The authors conclude that more research is needed to improve our understanding of whether and how visual illusions may be useful training tools for sport skill learning.

  13. Tactile modulation of hippocampal place fields.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gener, Thomas; Perez-Mendez, Lorena; Sanchez-Vives, Maria V

    2013-12-01

    Neural correlates of spatial representation can be found in the activity of the hippocampal place cells. These neurons are characterized by firing whenever the animal is located in a particular area of the space, the place field. Place fields are modulated by sensory cues, such as visual, auditory, or olfactory cues, being the influence of visual inputs the most thoroughly studied. Tactile information gathered by the whiskers has a prominent representation in the rat cerebral cortex. However, the influence of whisker-detected tactile cues on place fields remains an open question. Here we studied place fields in an enriched tactile environment where the remaining sensory cues were occluded. First, place cells were recorded before and after blockade of tactile transmission by means of lidocaine applied on the whisker pad. Following tactile deprivation, the majority of place cells decreased their firing rate and their place fields expanded. We next rotated the tactile cues and 90% of place fields rotated with them. Our results demonstrate that tactile information is integrated into place cells at least in a tactile-enriched arena and when other sensory cues are not available. Copyright © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  14. Simplification of Visual Rendering in Simulated Prosthetic Vision Facilitates Navigation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vergnieux, Victor; Macé, Marc J-M; Jouffrais, Christophe

    2017-09-01

    Visual neuroprostheses are still limited and simulated prosthetic vision (SPV) is used to evaluate potential and forthcoming functionality of these implants. SPV has been used to evaluate the minimum requirement on visual neuroprosthetic characteristics to restore various functions such as reading, objects and face recognition, object grasping, etc. Some of these studies focused on obstacle avoidance but only a few investigated orientation or navigation abilities with prosthetic vision. The resolution of current arrays of electrodes is not sufficient to allow navigation tasks without additional processing of the visual input. In this study, we simulated a low resolution array (15 × 18 electrodes, similar to a forthcoming generation of arrays) and evaluated the navigation abilities restored when visual information was processed with various computer vision algorithms to enhance the visual rendering. Three main visual rendering strategies were compared to a control rendering in a wayfinding task within an unknown environment. The control rendering corresponded to a resizing of the original image onto the electrode array size, according to the average brightness of the pixels. In the first rendering strategy, vision distance was limited to 3, 6, or 9 m, respectively. In the second strategy, the rendering was not based on the brightness of the image pixels, but on the distance between the user and the elements in the field of view. In the last rendering strategy, only the edges of the environments were displayed, similar to a wireframe rendering. All the tested renderings, except the 3 m limitation of the viewing distance, improved navigation performance and decreased cognitive load. Interestingly, the distance-based and wireframe renderings also improved the cognitive mapping of the unknown environment. These results show that low resolution implants are usable for wayfinding if specific computer vision algorithms are used to select and display appropriate

  15. Can visual illusions be used to facilitate sport skill learning?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Canal Bruland, R.; van der Meer, Y.; Moerman, J.

    2016-01-01

    Recently it has been reported that practicing putting with visual illusions that make the hole appear larger than it actually is leads to longer-lasting performance improvements. Interestingly, from a motor control and learning perspective, it may be possible to actually predict the opposite to

  16. Tactile defensiveness and stereotyped behaviors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baranek, G T; Foster, L G; Berkson, G

    1997-02-01

    This study explores the constructs of stereotyped behaviors (e.g., repetitive motor patterns, object manipulations, behavioral rigidities) and tactile defensiveness as relevant to occupational therapy theory and practice and attempts to test their purported relationships in children with developmental disabilities. Twenty-eight children with developmental disabilities and autism were assessed on eight factors of stereotyped behavior via a questionnaire and by four measures of tactile defensiveness. The subjects' scores from the questionnaire were correlated with their scores on the tactile defensiveness measures to see what, if any, relationship among these behaviors exists. Significant relationships emerged from the data, indicating that subjects with higher levels of tactile defensiveness were also more likely to evidence rigid or inflexible behaviors, repetitive verbalizations, visual stereotypes, and abnormal focused affections that are often associated with autism. No significant association was found between motor and object stereotypes and tactile defensiveness. These relationships could not be explained solely by maturational factors. The results suggest that clinicians should include observations of stereotyped behaviors, particularly behavioral rigidities, in conjunction with assessments of sensory defensiveness because these are related phenomena that may pose unique challenges for children with developmental disabilities and autism. Further study is needed to determine the causal mechanisms responsible for these relationships.

  17. Optical-to-Tactile Translator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Langevin, Maurice L. (Inventor); Moynihan, Philip I. (Inventor)

    2000-01-01

    An optical-to-tactile translator provides an aid for the visually impaired by translating a near-field scene to a tactile signal corresponding to said near-field scene. An optical sensor using a plurality of active pixel sensors (APS) converts the optical image within the near-field scene to a digital signal. The digital signal is then processed by a microprocessor and a simple shape signal is generated based on the digital signal. The shape signal is then communicated to a tactile transmitter where the shape signal is converted into a tactile signal using a series of contacts. The shape signal may be an outline of the significant shapes determined in the near-field scene, or the shape signal may comprise a simple symbolic representation of common items encountered repeatedly. The user is thus made aware of the unseen near-field scene, including potential obstacles and dangers, through a series of tactile contacts. In a preferred embodiment, a range determining device such as those commonly found on auto-focusing cameras is included to limit the distance that the optical sensor interprets the near-field scene.

  18. Instrumental tactile diagnostics in robot-assisted surgery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Solodova RF

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Rozalia F Solodova,1,2 Vladimir V Galatenko,1,2 Eldar R Nakashidze,3 Igor L Andreytsev,3 Alexey V Galatenko,1 Dmitriy K Senchik,2 Vladimir M Staroverov,1 Vladimir E Podolskii,1,2 Mikhail E Sokolov,1,2 Victor A Sadovnichy1,2 1Faculty of Mechanics and Mathematics, 2Institute of Mathematical Studies of Complex Systems, Lomonosov Moscow State University, 31st Surgery Department, Clinical Hospital 31, Moscow, Russia Background: Robotic surgery has gained wide acceptance due to minimizing trauma in patients. However, the lack of tactile feedback is an essential limiting factor for the further expansion. In robotic surgery, feedback related to touch is currently kinesthetic, and it is mainly aimed at the minimization of force applied to tissues and organs. Design and implementation of diagnostic tactile feedback is still an open problem. We hypothesized that a sufficient tactile feedback in robot-assisted surgery can be provided by utilization of Medical Tactile Endosurgical Complex (MTEC, which is a novel specialized tool that is already commercially available in the Russian Federation. MTEC allows registration of tactile images by a mechanoreceptor, real-time visualization of these images, and reproduction of images via a tactile display. Materials and methods: Nine elective surgeries were performed with da Vinci™ robotic system. An assistant performed tactile examination through an additional port under the guidance of a surgeon during revision of tissues. The operating surgeon sensed registered tactile data using a tactile display, and the assistant inspected the visualization of tactile data. First, surgeries where lesion boundaries were visually detectable were performed. The goal was to promote cooperation between the surgeon and the assistant and to train them in perception of the tactile feedback. Then, instrumental tactile diagnostics was utilized in case of visually undetectable boundaries. Results: In robot-assisted surgeries where lesion

  19. Remotely deployable aerial inspection using tactile sensors

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacLeod, C. N.; Cao, J.; Pierce, S. G.; Sullivan, J. C.; Pipe, A. G.; Dobie, G.; Summan, R.

    2014-02-01

    For structural monitoring applications, the use of remotely deployable Non-Destructive Evaluation (NDE) inspection platforms offer many advantages, including improved accessibility, greater safety and reduced cost, when compared to traditional manual inspection techniques. The use of such platforms, previously reported by researchers at the University Strathclyde facilitates the potential for rapid scanning of large areas and volumes in hazardous locations. A common problem for both manual and remote deployment approaches lies in the intrinsic stand-off and surface coupling issues of typical NDE probes. The associated complications of these requirements are obviously significantly exacerbated when considering aerial based remote inspection and deployment, resulting in simple visual techniques being the preferred sensor payload. Researchers at Bristol Robotics Laboratory have developed biomimetic tactile sensors modelled on the facial whiskers (vibrissae) of animals such as rats and mice, with the latest sensors actively sweeping their tips across the surface in a back and forth motion. The current work reports on the design and performance of an aerial inspection platform and the suitability of tactile whisking sensors to aerial based surface monitoring applications.

  20. Reward association facilitates distractor suppression in human visual search.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gong, Mengyuan; Yang, Feitong; Li, Sheng

    2016-04-01

    Although valuable objects are attractive in nature, people often encounter situations where they would prefer to avoid such distraction while focusing on the task goal. Contrary to the typical effect of attentional capture by a reward-associated item, we provide evidence for a facilitation effect derived from the active suppression of a high reward-associated stimulus when cuing its identity as distractor before the display of search arrays. Selection of the target is shown to be significantly faster when the distractors were in high reward-associated colour than those in low reward-associated or non-rewarded colours. This behavioural reward effect was associated with two neural signatures before the onset of the search display: the increased frontal theta oscillation and the strengthened top-down modulation from frontal to anterior temporal regions. The former suggests an enhanced working memory representation for the reward-associated stimulus and the increased need for cognitive control to override Pavlovian bias, whereas the latter indicates that the boost of inhibitory control is realized through a frontal top-down mechanism. These results suggest a mechanism in which the enhanced working memory representation of a reward-associated feature is integrated with task demands to modify attentional priority during active distractor suppression and benefit behavioural performance. © 2016 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  1. Ontogeny of antipredator performance in hatchery-reared Japanese anchovy Engraulis japonicus larvae exposed to visual or tactile predators in relation to turbidity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ohata, R; Masuda, R; Yamashita, Y

    2011-12-01

    Laboratory experiments revealed distinct effects of turbidity on the survival of Japanese anchovy Engraulis japonicus larvae when exposed to either visual (jack mackerel Trachurus japonicus) or tactile (moon jellyfish Aurelia aurita) predators. The experiments were conducted in 30 l tanks with three levels of turbidity obtained by dissolving 0, 50 or 300 mg l(-1) of kaolin. Predators were introduced to experimental tanks followed by larvae of E. japonicus ranging from 5 to 25 mm standard lengths (L(s) ). When exposed to T. japonicus, the mean survival rate of larvae was significantly higher in 300 mg l(-1) treatments compared to the other turbidity levels. When exposed to A. aurita, however, there was no difference in the survival rates among different turbidity treatments. The survival rates when exposed to either predator improved with larval growth. The logistic survivorship models for E. japonicus larvae when exposed to A. aurita had an inflection point at c. 12 mm L(s) , suggesting that their size refuge from A. aurita is close to this value. Comparison to a previous study suggests a high vulnerability of shirasu (long and transparent) fish larvae to jellyfish predation under turbidity. This study indicates that anthropogenic increases of turbidity in coastal waters may increase the relative effect of jellyfish predation on fish larvae. © 2011 The Authors. Journal of Fish Biology © 2011 The Fisheries Society of the British Isles.

  2. SYNTHESIZABLE AND PROTOTYPIC VISUAL-TACTILE SYSTEM-IN FPGA: AN ALTERNATIVE TO ANALYSIS AND IMPROVEMENT OF THE VOICE QUALITY FOR THE HEARING IMPAIRED PEOPLE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rodrigo Leone Alves

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Oral communication comprises one of the most important forms of social interaction. The process of learning the spoken language depends on the hearing, therefore, the total or partial loss of hearing sensitivity hinders such aspect. Digital signal processing techniques with non-invasive character are used for diagnosis, support and improvement of the voice quality of the deaf. Thus, the present study aims to propose and develop a system of analysis and correction of vocal disorders by means of visual and tactile feedback with module implemented in programmable device type FPGA (Field Programmable Gate Array. The results point to the potential of a proposed intervention as a helper for sensory substitution, being based on the monitoring and control of speech, in order to allow for the assessment and remediation by means of an electronic resource, allowing deaf individuals to obtain a support for learning the spoken language. The possibilities for improvements in communication skills observed in this study are dependent on the capability of the device together with the speech therapist, integrating therapies with the support of the family, the time and the motivation of the user, factors that cooperate for the success of this approach.

  3. Spatiotemporal Relationships among Audiovisual Stimuli Modulate Auditory Facilitation of Visual Target Discrimination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Qi; Yang, Huamin; Sun, Fang; Wu, Jinglong

    2015-03-01

    Sensory information is multimodal; through audiovisual interaction, task-irrelevant auditory stimuli tend to speed response times and increase visual perception accuracy. However, mechanisms underlying these performance enhancements have remained unclear. We hypothesize that task-irrelevant auditory stimuli might provide reliable temporal and spatial cues for visual target discrimination and behavioral response enhancement. Using signal detection theory, the present study investigated the effects of spatiotemporal relationships on auditory facilitation of visual target discrimination. Three experiments were conducted where an auditory stimulus maintained reliable temporal and/or spatial relationships with visual target stimuli. Results showed that perception sensitivity (d') to visual target stimuli was enhanced only when a task-irrelevant auditory stimulus maintained reliable spatiotemporal relationships with a visual target stimulus. When only reliable spatial or temporal information was contained, perception sensitivity was not enhanced. These results suggest that reliable spatiotemporal relationships between visual and auditory signals are required for audiovisual integration during a visual discrimination task, most likely due to a spread of attention. These results also indicate that auditory facilitation of visual target discrimination follows from late-stage cognitive processes rather than early stage sensory processes. © 2015 SAGE Publications.

  4. Pressure Sores Prevention for Paraplegic People: Effects of Visual, Auditory and Tactile Supplementations on Overpressures Distribution in Seated Posture

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Olivier Chenu

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents a study on the usage of different informative modalities as biofeedbacks of a perceptual supplementation device aiming at reducing overpressure at the buttock area. Visual, audio and lingual electrotactile modalities are analysed and compared with a non-biofeedback session. In conclusion, sensory modalities have a positive and equal effect, but they are not equally judged in terms of comfort and disturbance with some other activities.

  5. Tactile Studio, artigianato digitale al servizio dell’accessibilità

    OpenAIRE

    Riccardo Leone; Philippe Moreau

    2017-01-01

    Tactile Studio is a design agency for universal design in arts and culture. Tactile experiences are essential for people with visual impairm ents and gr eatly assist many people with cognitive disabilities. Tactile experiences should be included in every exhibition. Children, older adults, people with language diff iculties or fr om diff erent cultural backgr ounds..To name an audience who will not benefit fr om these designs is impossible. Pioneers in France, the nation's top museums have en...

  6. Tactile feedback improves auditory spatial localization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Monica eGori

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Our recent studies suggest that congenitally blind adults have severely impaired thresholds in an auditory spatial-bisection task, pointing to the importance of vision in constructing complex auditory spatial maps (Gori et al., 2014. To explore strategies that may improve the auditory spatial sense in visually impaired people, we investigated the impact of tactile feedback on spatial auditory localization in 48 blindfolded sighted subjects. We measured auditory spatial bisection thresholds before and after training, either with tactile feedback, verbal feedback or no feedback. Audio thresholds were first measured with a spatial bisection task: subjects judged whether the second sound of a three sound sequence was spatially closer to the first or the third sound. The tactile-feedback group underwent two audio-tactile feedback sessions of 100 trials, where each auditory trial was followed by the same spatial sequence played on the subject’s forearm; auditory spatial bisection thresholds were evaluated after each session. In the verbal-feedback condition, the positions of the sounds were verbally reported to the subject after each feedback trial. The no-feedback group did the same sequence of trials, with no feedback. Performance improved significantly only after audio-tactile feedback. The results suggest that direct tactile feedback interacts with the auditory spatial localization system, possibly by a process of cross-sensory recalibration. Control tests with the subject rotated suggested that this effect occurs only when the tactile and acoustic sequences are spatially coherent. Our results suggest that the tactile system can be used to recalibrate the auditory sense of space. These results encourage the possibility of designing rehabilitation programs to help blind persons establish a robust auditory sense of space, through training with the tactile modality.

  7. From Vesalius to Virtual Reality: How Embodied Cognition Facilitates the Visualization of Anatomy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jang, Susan

    2010-01-01

    This study examines the facilitative effects of embodiment of a complex internal anatomical structure through three-dimensional ("3-D") interactivity in a virtual reality ("VR") program. Since Shepard and Metzler's influential 1971 study, it has been known that 3-D objects (e.g., multiple-armed cube or external body parts) are visually and…

  8. Neural correlates associated with superior tactile symmetry perception in the early blind

    OpenAIRE

    Bauer, Corinna; Yazzolino, Lindsay; Hirsch, Gabriella; Cattaneo, Zaira; Vecchi, Tomaso; Merabet, Lotfi B.

    2014-01-01

    Symmetry is an organizational principle that is ubiquitous throughout the visual world. However, this property can also be detected through non-visual modalities such as touch. The role of prior visual experience on detecting tactile patterns containing symmetry remains unclear. We compared the behavioral performance of early blind and sighted (blindfolded) controls on a tactile symmetry detection task. The tactile patterns used were similar in design and complexity as in previous visual perc...

  9. City Walks and Tactile Experience

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mădălina Diaconu

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper is an attempt to develop categories of the pedestrian’s tactile and kinaesthetic experience of the city. The beginning emphasizes the haptic qualities of surfaces and textures, which can be “palpated” visually or experienced by walking. Also the lived city is three-dimensional; its corporeal depth is discussed here in relation to the invisible sewers, protuberant profiles, and the formal diversity of roofscapes. A central role is ascribed in the present analysis to the formal similarities between the representation of the city by walking through it and the representation of the tactile form of objects. Additional aspects of the “tactile” experience of the city in a broad sense concern the feeling of their rhythms and the exposure to weather conditions. Finally, several aspects of contingency converge in the visible age of architectural works, which record traces of individual and collective histories.

  10. Enhanced tactile encoding and memory recognition in congenital blindness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Angiulli, Amedeo; Waraich, Paul

    2002-06-01

    Several behavioural studies have shown that early-blind persons possess superior tactile skills. Since neurophysiological data show that early-blind persons recruit visual as well as somatosensory cortex to carry out tactile processing (cross-modal plasticity), blind persons' sharper tactile skills may be related to cortical re-organisation resulting from loss of vision early in their life. To examine the nature of blind individuals' tactile superiority and its implications for cross-modal plasticity, we compared the tactile performance of congenitally totally blind, low-vision and sighted children on raised-line picture identification test and re-test, assessing effects of task familiarity, exploratory strategy and memory recognition. What distinguished the blind from the other children was higher memory recognition and higher tactile encoding associated with efficient exploration. These results suggest that enhanced perceptual encoding and recognition memory may be two cognitive correlates of cross-modal plasticity in congenital blindness.

  11. Ambiguity in Tactile Apparent Motion Perception.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emanuela Liaci

    Full Text Available In von Schiller's Stroboscopic Alternative Motion (SAM stimulus two visually presented diagonal dot pairs, located on the corners of an imaginary rectangle, alternate with each other and induce either horizontal, vertical or, rarely, rotational motion percepts. SAM motion perception can be described by a psychometric function of the dot aspect ratio ("AR", i.e. the relation between vertical and horizontal dot distances. Further, with equal horizontal and vertical dot distances (AR = 1 perception is biased towards vertical motion. In a series of five experiments, we presented tactile SAM versions and studied the role of AR and of different reference frames for the perception of tactile apparent motion.We presented tactile SAM stimuli and varied the ARs, while participants reported the perceived motion directions. Pairs of vibration stimulators were attached to the participants' forearms and stimulator distances were varied within and between forearms. We compared straight and rotated forearm conditions with each other in order to disentangle the roles of exogenous and endogenous reference frames.Increasing the tactile SAM's AR biased perception towards vertical motion, but the effect was weak compared to the visual modality. We found no horizontal disambiguation, even for very small tactile ARs. A forearm rotation by 90° kept the vertical bias, even though it was now coupled with small ARs. A 45° rotation condition with crossed forearms, however, evoked a strong horizontal motion bias.Existing approaches to explain the visual SAM bias fail to explain the current tactile results. Particularly puzzling is the strong horizontal bias in the crossed-forearm conditions. In the case of tactile apparent motion, there seem to be no fixed priority rule for perceptual disambiguation. Rather the weighting of available evidence seems to depend on the degree of stimulus ambiguity, the current situation and on the perceptual strategy of the individual

  12. Meet our Neighbours - a tactile experience

    Science.gov (United States)

    Canas, L.; Lobo Correia, A.

    2013-09-01

    Planetary science is a key field in astronomy that draws lots of attention and that engages large amounts of enthusiasts. On its essence, it is a visual science and the current resources and activities for the inclusion of visually impaired children, although increasing, are still costly and somewhat scarce. Therefore there is a paramount need to develop more low cost resources in order to provide experiences that can reach all, even the more socially deprived communities. "Meet our neighbours!-a tactile experience", plans to promote and provide inclusion activities for visually impaired children and their non-visually impaired peers through the use of astronomy hands-on low cost activities. Is aimed for children from the ages of 6 to 12 years old and produce data set 13 tactile images of the main objects of the Solar System that can be used in schools, science centres and outreach associations. Accessing several common problems through tactile resources, with this project we present ways to successfully provide low cost solutions (avoiding the expensive tactile printing costs), promote inclusion and interactive hands-on activities for visually impaired children and their non-visually impaired peers and create dynamic interactions based on oral knowledge transmission between them. Here we describe the process of implementing such initiative near target communities: establishing a bridge between scientists, children and teachers. The struggles and challenges perceived during the project and the enrichment experience of engaging astronomy with these specific groups, broadening horizons in an overall experience accessible to all.

  13. Episodic retrieval and feature facilitation in intertrial priming of visual search

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Asgeirsson, Arni Gunnar; Kristjánsson, Árni

    2011-01-01

    Abstract Huang, Holcombe, and Pashler (Memory & Cognition, 32, 12–20, 2004) found that priming from repetition of different features of a target in a visual search task resulted in significant response time (RT) reductions when both target brightness and size were repeated. But when only one...... feature was repeated and the other changed, RTs were longer than when neither feature was repeated. From this, they argued that priming in visual search reflected episodic retrieval of memory traces, rather than facilitation of repeated features. We tested different varia- tions of the search task...

  14. Exploratory Procedures of Tactile Images in Visually Impaired and Blindfolded Sighted Children: How They Relate to Their Consequent Performance in Drawing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vinter, Annie; Fernandes, Viviane; Orlandi, Oriana; Morgan, Pascal

    2012-01-01

    The aim of the present study was to compare the types of exploratory procedures employed by children when exploring bidimensional tactile patterns and correlate the use of these procedures with the children's shape drawing performance. 18 early blind children, 20 children with low vision and 24 age-matched blindfolded sighted children aged…

  15. Collinear facilitation and contour integration in autism: evidence for atypical visual integration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jachim, Stephen; Warren, Paul A; McLoughlin, Niall; Gowen, Emma

    2015-01-01

    Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by impaired social interaction, atypical communication and a restricted repertoire of interests and activities. Altered sensory and perceptual experiences are also common, and a notable perceptual difference between individuals with ASD and controls is their superior performance in visual tasks where it may be beneficial to ignore global context. This superiority may be the result of atypical integrative processing. To explore this claim we investigated visual integration in adults with ASD (diagnosed with Asperger's Syndrome) using two psychophysical tasks thought to rely on integrative processing-collinear facilitation and contour integration. We measured collinear facilitation at different flanker orientation offsets and contour integration for both open and closed contours. Our results indicate that compared to matched controls, ASD participants show (i) reduced collinear facilitation, despite equivalent performance without flankers; and (ii) less benefit from closed contours in contour integration. These results indicate weaker visuospatial integration in adults with ASD and suggest that further studies using these types of paradigms would provide knowledge on how contextual processing is altered in ASD.

  16. Collinear facilitation and contour integration in autism: evidence for atypical visual integration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephen eJachim

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Autism spectrum disorder (ASD is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by impaired social interaction, atypical communication and a restricted repertoire of interests and activities. Altered sensory and perceptual experiences are also common, and a notable perceptual difference between individuals with ASD and controls is their superior performance in visual tasks where it may be beneficial to ignore global context. This superiority may be the result of atypical integrative processing. To explore this claim we investigated visual integration in adults with ASD (diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome using two psychophysical tasks thought to rely on integrative processing - collinear facilitation and contour integration. We measured collinear facilitation at different flanker orientation offsets and contour integration for both open and closed contours. Our results indicate that compared to matched controls, ASD participants show (i reduced collinear facilitation, despite equivalent performance without flankers and (ii less benefit from closed contours in contour integration. These results indicate weaker visuospatial integration in adults with ASD and suggest that further studies using these types of paradigms would provide knowledge on how contextual processing is altered in ASD.

  17. Generation of tactile maps for artificial skin.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simon McGregor

    Full Text Available Prior research has shown that representations of retinal surfaces can be learned from the intrinsic structure of visual sensory data in neural simulations, in robots, as well as by animals. Furthermore, representations of cochlear (frequency surfaces can be learned from auditory data in neural simulations. Advances in hardware technology have allowed the development of artificial skin for robots, realising a new sensory modality which differs in important respects from vision and audition in its sensorimotor characteristics. This provides an opportunity to further investigate ordered sensory map formation using computational tools. We show that it is possible to learn representations of non-trivial tactile surfaces, which require topologically and geometrically involved three-dimensional embeddings. Our method automatically constructs a somatotopic map corresponding to the configuration of tactile sensors on a rigid body, using only intrinsic properties of the tactile data. The additional complexities involved in processing the tactile modality require the development of a novel multi-dimensional scaling algorithm. This algorithm, ANISOMAP, extends previous methods and outperforms them, producing high-quality reconstructions of tactile surfaces in both simulation and hardware tests. In addition, the reconstruction turns out to be robust to unanticipated hardware failure.

  18. FACILITATING INTEGRATED SPATIO-TEMPORAL VISUALIZATION AND ANALYSIS OF HETEROGENEOUS ARCHAEOLOGICAL AND PALAEOENVIRONMENTAL RESEARCH DATA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. Willmes

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available In the context of the Collaborative Research Centre 806 "Our way to Europe" (CRC806, a research database is developed for integrating data from the disciplines of archaeology, the geosciences and the cultural sciences to facilitate integrated access to heterogeneous data sources. A practice-oriented data integration concept and its implementation is presented in this contribution. The data integration approach is based on the application of Semantic Web Technology and is applied to the domains of archaeological and palaeoenvironmental data. The aim is to provide integrated spatio-temporal access to an existing wealth of data to facilitate research on the integrated data basis. For the web portal of the CRC806 research database (CRC806-Database, a number of interfaces and applications have been evaluated, developed and implemented for exposing the data to interactive analysis and visualizations.

  19. Temporal Oculomotor Inhibition of Return and Spatial Facilitation of Return in a Visual Encoding Task

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Steven G Luke

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Oculomotor inhibition of return (O-IOR is an increase in saccade latency prior to an eye movement to a recently fixated location compared to other locations. It has been proposed that this temporal O-IOR may have spatial consequences, facilitating foraging by inhibiting return to previously attended regions. In order to test this possibility, participants viewed arrays of objects and of words while their eye movements were recorded. Temporal O-IOR was observed, with equivalent effects for object and word arrays, indicating that temporal O-IOR is an oculomotor phenomenon independent of array content. There was no evidence for spatial inhibition of return. Instead, spatial facilitation of return was observed: Participants were significantly more likely than chance to make return saccades and to refixate just-visited locations. Further, the likelihood of making a return saccade to an object or word was contingent on the amount of time spent viewing that object or word before leaving it. This suggests that, unlike temporal O-IOR, return probability is influenced by cognitive processing. Taken together, these results are inconsistent with the hypothesis that inhibition of return functions as a foraging facilitator. The results also provide strong evidence for a different oculomotor bias that could serve as a foraging facilitator: saccadic momentum, a tendency to repeat the most recently executed saccade program. We suggest that models of visual attention could incorporate saccadic momentum in place of inhibition of return.

  20. ERP evidence that auditory-visual speech facilitates working memory in younger and older adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frtusova, Jana B; Winneke, Axel H; Phillips, Natalie A

    2013-06-01

    Auditory-visual (AV) speech enhances speech perception and facilitates auditory processing, as measured by event-related brain potentials (ERPs). Considering a perspective of shared resources between perceptual and cognitive processes, facilitated speech perception may render more resources available for higher-order functions. This study examined whether AV speech facilitation leads to better working memory (WM) performance in 23 younger and 20 older adults. Participants completed an n-back task (0- to 3-back) under visual-only (V-only), auditory-only (A-only), and AV conditions. The results showed faster responses across all memory loads and improved accuracy in the most demanding conditions (2- and 3-back) during AV compared with unisensory conditions. Older adults benefited from the AV presentation to the same extent as younger adults. WM performance of older adults during the AV presentation did not differ from that of younger adults in the A-only condition, suggesting that an AV presentation can help to counteract some of the age-related WM decline. The ERPs showed a decrease in the auditory N1 amplitude during the AV compared with A-only presentation in older adults, suggesting that the facilitation of perceptual processing becomes especially beneficial with aging. Additionally, the N1 occurred earlier in the AV than in the A-only condition for both age groups. These AV-induced modulations of auditory processing correlated with improvement in certain behavioral and ERP measures of WM. These results support an integrated model between perception and cognition, and suggest that processing speech under AV conditions enhances WM performance of both younger and older adults. PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2013 APA, all rights reserved.

  1. Tactility and the body in early Chinese medicine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hsu, Elisabeth

    2005-03-01

    If visual inspection of corpses was central to the development of anatomy in modern Europe, one may ask which of the senses was important for the emergence of the predominant currents of scholarly medical knowledge and practice in third- and second-century B.C.E. China? This article argues that it was tactile perception prompted by a tactile exploration of living bodies. The evidence, derived from a close reading of the Mawangdui medical manuscripts, the 105th chapter of the Records of the Historian, and selected passages from the Huang Di's Inner Canon, points to three important trends: first, the tactile exploration of the extremities led to a rich vocabulary of compound words for pain as localized in specific body parts; second, the tactile exploration of the mai gave rise to an even richer vocabulary on qualities of touch in pulse diagnostics; and third, the tactile exploration of the abdomen led to the assessment of the quality of the internal viscera with words that generally were used for describing the tactile quality of skin and flesh. This finding may appear surprising in the light of later developments during the dynastic history of Chinese medicine where tactile exploration of abdomen and extremities would appear unseemly. The author suggests that extensive tactile explorations of the body were possible before Confucius' teachings became a predominant aspect of state ideology.

  2. A human centered GeoVisualization framework to facilitate visual exploration of telehealth data: a case study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joshi, Ashish; de Araujo Novaes, Magdala; Machiavelli, Josiane; Iyengar, Sriram; Vogler, Robert; Johnson, Craig; Zhang, Jiajie; Hsu, Chiehwen E

    2012-01-01

    Public health data is typically organized by geospatial units. Routine geographic monitoring of health data enables an understanding of the spatial patterns of events in terms of causes and controls. GeoVisualization (GeoVis) allows users to see information hidden both visually and explicitly on a map. Despite the applicability of GeoVis in public health, it is still underused for visualizing public health data. The objective of this study is to examine the perception of telehealth users' to utilize GeoVis as a proof of concept to facilitate visual exploration of telehealth data in Brazil using principles of human centered approach and cognitive fit theory. A mixed methods approach combining qualitative and quantitative assessments was utilized in this cross sectional study conducted at the Telehealth Center of the Federal University of Pernambuco (NUTE-UFPE), Recife, Brazil. A convenient sample of 20 participants currently involved in NUTES was drawn during a period of Sep-Oct 2011. Data was gathered using previously tested questionnaire surveys and in-person interviews. Socio-demographic Information such as age, gender, prior education, familiarity with the use of computer and GeoVis was gathered. Other information gathered included participants' prior spatial analysis skills, level of motivation and use of GeoVis in telehealth. Audio recording was done for all interviews conducted in both English and Portuguese, and transcription of the audio content to English was done by a certified translator. Univariate analysis was performed and means and standard deviations were reported for the continuous variables and frequency distributions for the categorical variables. For the open-ended questions, we utilized a grounded theory to identify themes and their relationship as they emerge from the data. Analysis of the quantitative data was performed using SAS V9.1 and qualitative data was performed using NVivo9. The average age of participants was 28 years (SD=7), a

  3. From Vesalius to virtual reality: How embodied cognition facilitates the visualization of anatomy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jang, Susan

    This study examines the facilitative effects of embodiment of a complex internal anatomical structure through three-dimensional ("3-D") interactivity in a virtual reality ("VR") program. Since Shepard and Metzler's influential 1971 study, it has been known that 3-D objects (e.g., multiple-armed cube or external body parts) are visually and motorically embodied in our minds. For example, people take longer to rotate mentally an image of their hand not only when there is a greater degree of rotation, but also when the images are presented in a manner incompatible with their natural body movement (Parsons, 1987a, 1994; Cooper & Shepard, 1975; Sekiyama, 1983). Such findings confirm the notion that our mental images and rotations of those images are in fact confined by the laws of physics and biomechanics, because we perceive, think and reason in an embodied fashion. With the advancement of new technologies, virtual reality programs for medical education now enable users to interact directly in a 3-D environment with internal anatomical structures. Given that such structures are not readily viewable to users and thus not previously susceptible to embodiment, coupled with the VR environment also affording all possible degrees of rotation, how people learn from these programs raises new questions. If we embody external anatomical parts we can see, such as our hands and feet, can we embody internal anatomical parts we cannot see? Does manipulating the anatomical part in virtual space facilitate the user's embodiment of that structure and therefore the ability to visualize the structure mentally? Medical students grouped in yoked-pairs were tasked with mastering the spatial configuration of an internal anatomical structure; only one group was allowed to manipulate the images of this anatomical structure in a 3-D VR environment, whereas the other group could only view the manipulation. The manipulation group outperformed the visual group, suggesting that the interactivity

  4. Towards the Tactile Internet

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Szabó, Dávid; Gulyás, András; Fitzek, Frank

    2015-01-01

    5G communication networks enable the steering and control of Internet of Things and therefore require extreme low latency communication referred to as the tactile Internet. In this paper we show that the massive use of network coding throughout the network significantly improves latency and reduce...... the frequency of packet re-transmission, so an architecture built around network coding may be a feasible road towards realizing the tactile internet vision. Our contribution is threefold: (i) we show how network coding improves latency and reduces packet re-transmission with respect to other coding schemes...

  5. Reduced plantar sole sensitivity facilitates early adaptation to a visual rotation pointing task when standing upright

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maxime Billot

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Humans are capable of pointing to a target with accuracy. However, when vision is distorted through a visual rotation or mirror-reversed vision, the performance is initially degraded and thereafter improves with practice. There are suggestions this gradual improvement results from a sensorimotor recalibration involving initial gating of the somatosensory information from the pointing hand. In the present experiment, we examined if this process interfered with balance control by asking participants to point to targets with a visual rotation from a standing posture. This duality in processing sensory information (i.e., gating sensory signals from the hand while processing those arising from the control of balance could generate initial interference leading to a degraded pointing performance. We hypothesized that if this is the case, the attenuation of plantar sole somatosensory information through cooling could reduce the sensorimotor interference, and facilitate the early adaptation (i.e. improvement in the pointing task. Results supported this hypothesis. These observations suggest that processing sensory information for balance control interferes with the sensorimotor recalibration process imposed by a pointing task when vision is rotated.

  6. Testing Tactile Masking between the Forearms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Amour, Sarah; Harris, Laurence R

    2016-02-10

    Masking, in which one stimulus affects the detection of another, is a classic technique that has been used in visual, auditory, and tactile research, usually using stimuli that are close together to reveal local interactions. Masking effects have also been demonstrated in which a tactile stimulus alters the perception of a touch at a distant location. Such effects can provide insight into how components of the body's representations in the brain may be linked. Occasional reports have indicated that touches on one hand or forearm can affect tactile sensitivity at corresponding contralateral locations. To explore the matching of corresponding points across the body, we can measure the spatial tuning and effect of posture on contralateral masking. Careful controls are required to rule out direct effects of the remote stimulus, for example by mechanical transmission, and also attention effects in which thresholds may be altered by the participant's attention being drawn away from the stimulus of interest. The use of this technique is beneficial as a behavioural measure for exploring which parts of the body are functionally connected and whether the two sides of the body interact in a somatotopic representation. This manuscript describes a behavioural protocol that can be used for studying contralateral tactile masking.

  7. Tactile maze solving in congenitally blind individuals

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gagnon, Léa; Kupers, Ron; Schneider, Fabien C

    2010-01-01

    and environmental cues such as temperature and echolocation. We hypothesize that by limiting these cues, blind individuals will lose their advantage compared with controls in spatial navigation tasks. We therefore evaluated the performance of blind and sighted individuals in small-scale, tactile multiple T mazes....... Our results show that blindfolded sighted controls outperformed blind participants in the route-learning tasks. This suggests that, contrary to indoor large-scale spaces, navigational skills inside small-scale spaces benefit from visual experience....

  8. Intuitive tactile algorithms to guide blind runners by means of a belt with vibrators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Durá-Gil, Juan V; Bazuelo-Ruiz, Bruno; Mollà, Fernando; Barberà-Guillem, Ricard; Jakab, Àgnes; Csielka, Tamás

    2015-01-01

    Visually impaired people do not have equal possibilities to practice sports. In the case of running they need a sighted guide. This paper compare different possibilities for indicating direction to blind people by means of a belt that transmits tactile messages, and defines design requirements based on anthropometric analysis. The results shows that intuitive tactile messages are achieved with tactile stimuli applied in the ventral section, from the iliac crests to the navel.

  9. Review of Recent Inkjet-Printed Capacitive Tactile Sensors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ahmed Salim

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Inkjet printing is an advanced printing technology that has been used to develop conducting layers, interconnects and other features on a variety of substrates. It is an additive manufacturing process that offers cost-effective, lightweight designs and simplifies the fabrication process with little effort. There is hardly sufficient research on tactile sensors and inkjet printing. Advancements in materials science and inkjet printing greatly facilitate the realization of sophisticated tactile sensors. Starting from the concept of capacitive sensing, a brief comparison of printing techniques, the essential requirements of inkjet-printing and the attractive features of state-of-the art inkjet-printed tactile sensors developed on diverse substrates (paper, polymer, glass and textile are presented in this comprehensive review. Recent trends in inkjet-printed wearable/flexible and foldable tactile sensors are evaluated, paving the way for future research.

  10. Spelling pronunciation and visual preview both facilitate learning to spell irregular words.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hilte, Maartje; Reitsma, Pieter

    2006-12-01

    Spelling pronunciations are hypothesized to be helpful in building up relatively stable phonologically underpinned orthographic representations, particularly for learning words with irregular phoneme-grapheme correspondences. In a four-week computer-based training, the efficacy of spelling pronunciations and previewing the spelling patterns on learning to spell loan words in Dutch, originating from French and English, was examined in skilled and less skilled spellers with varying ages. Reading skills were taken into account. Overall, compared to normal pronunciation, spelling pronunciation facilitated the learning of the correct spelling of irregular words, but it appeared to be no more effective than previewing. Differences between training conditions appeared to fade with older spellers. Less skilled young spellers seemed to profit more from visual examination of the word as compared to practice with spelling pronunciations. The findings appear to indicate that spelling pronunciation and allowing a preview can both be effective ways to learn correct spellings of orthographically unpredictable words, irrespective of age or spelling ability.

  11. The Involvement of Budapest Residents with Visual Impairments in Leisure Sports: Barriers and Facilitators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gombás Judit

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Since the political and economic changes that occurred in 1989-1990, Hungary has been in a state of transition from a socialist regime to a democratic culture. In an effort to comply with the rules of democracy, equal opportunities for people with disabilities are demanded on various platforms. However, inclusion in sports is still uncommon, and physical education (P.E. teachers, trainers, sports scientists, etc. are not provided with in-depth education on adapted sports. The present study examines the involvement of Hungarian adults with VI (visual impairments in leisure sports and investigates facilitators and barriers which members of the target group face. First, the educational opportunities (segregation or inclusion provided for Hungarian children with VI are introduced. The historical and legislative backgrounds are presented in order to give a clear review of the social context. Findings of a survey on the activity levels of Hungarian adults with vision loss are introduced, which reflect the target group’s willingness to get involved in leisure activities and also pinpoint factors which hinder their participation (e.g., professionals’ unfamiliarity with the special needs of those with VI and adapted sports opportunities.

  12. Tactile Data Entry System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adams, Richard J.

    2015-01-01

    The patent-pending Glove-Enabled Computer Operations (GECO) design leverages extravehicular activity (EVA) glove design features as platforms for instrumentation and tactile feedback, enabling the gloves to function as human-computer interface devices. Flexible sensors in each finger enable control inputs that can be mapped to any number of functions (e.g., a mouse click, a keyboard strike, or a button press). Tracking of hand motion is interpreted alternatively as movement of a mouse (change in cursor position on a graphical user interface) or a change in hand position on a virtual keyboard. Programmable vibro-tactile actuators aligned with each finger enrich the interface by creating the haptic sensations associated with control inputs, such as recoil of a button press.

  13. Compliant Tactile Sensors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Torres-Jara, Eduardo R.

    2011-01-01

    Tactile sensors are currently being designed to sense interactions with human hands or pen-like interfaces. They are generally embedded in screens, keyboards, mousepads, and pushbuttons. However, they are not well fitted to sense interactions with all kinds of objects. A novel sensor was originally designed to investigate robotics manipulation where not only the contact with an object needs to be detected, but also where the object needs to be held and manipulated. This tactile sensor has been designed with features that allow it to sense a large variety of objects in human environments. The sensor is capable of detecting forces coming from any direction. As a result, this sensor delivers a force vector with three components. In contrast to most of the tactile sensors that are flat, this one sticks out from the surface so that it is likely to come in contact with objects. The sensor conforms to the object with which it interacts. This augments the contact's surface, consequently reducing the stress applied to the object. This feature makes the sensor ideal for grabbing objects and other applications that require compliance with objects. The operational range of the sensor allows it to operate well with objects found in peoples' daily life. The fabrication of this sensor is simple and inexpensive because of its compact mechanical configuration and reduced electronics. These features are convenient for mass production of individual sensors as well as dense arrays. The biologically inspired tactile sensor is sensitive to both normal and lateral forces, providing better feedback to the host robot about the object to be grabbed. It has a high sensitivity, enabling its use in manipulation fingers, which typically have low mechanical impedance in order to be very compliant. The construction of the sensor is simple, using inexpensive technologies like silicon rubber molding and standard stock electronics.

  14. Attentional cueing by cross-modal congruency produces both facilitation and inhibition on short-term visual recognition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Makovac, Elena; Kwok, Sze Chai; Gerbino, Walter

    2014-10-01

    The attentional modulation of performance in a memory task, comparable to the one obtained in a perceptual task, is at the focus of contemporary research. We hypothesized that a biphasic effect (namely, facilitation followed by inhibition) can be obtained in visual working memory when attention is cued towards one item of the memorandum and participants must recognize a delayed probe as being identical to any item of the memorandum. In every trial, a delayed spiky/curvy probe appeared centrally, to be matched with the same-category shape maintained in visual working memory which could be either physically identical (positive trials) or only categorically similar (negative trials). To orient the participant's attention towards a selected portion of a two-item memorandum, a (tzk/wow) sound was played simultaneously with two lateral visual shapes (one spiky and one curved). Our results indicate that an exogenous attentional shift during perception of the memorandum, induced by a congruent audio-visual pairing, first facilitates and then inhibits the recognition of a cued item (but not of a non-cued item) stored in visual working memory. A coherent pattern of individual differences emerged, indicating that the amount of early facilitation in congruent-sound trials was negatively correlated with recognition sensitivity in no-sound trials (suggesting that the inverse effectiveness rule may also apply to memory) and positively correlated with later inhibition, as well as with the self-reported susceptibility to memory failures. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  15. Artificial tactile sensing in minimally invasive surgery - a new technical approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schostek, Sebastian; Ho, Chi-Nghia; Kalanovic, Daniel; Schurr, Marc O

    2006-01-01

    The loss of tactile sensation is a commonly known drawback of minimally invasive surgery (MIS). Since the advent of MIS, research activities in providing tactile information to the surgeon are still ongoing, in order to improve patient safety and to extend the indications for MIS. We have designed a tactile sensor system comprising a tactile laparoscopic grasper for surgical palpation. For this purpose, we developed a novel tactile sensor technology which allows the manufacturing of an integrated sensor array within an acceptable price range. The array was integrated into the jaws of a 10mm laparoscopic grasper. The tactile data are transferred wirelessly via Bluetooth and are presented visually to the surgeon. The goal was to be able to obtain information about the shape and consistency of tissue structures by gently compressing the tissue between the jaws of the tactile instrument and thus to be able to recognize and assess anatomical or pathological structures, even if they are hidden in the tissue. With a prototype of the tactile sensor system we have conducted bench-tests as well as in-vitro and in-vivo experiments. The system proved feasibility in an experimental environment, it was easy to use, and the novel tactile sensor array was applicable for both palpation and grasping manoeuvres with forces of up to 60N. The tactile data turned out to be a useful supplement to the minimal amount of haptic feedback that is provided by current endoscopic instruments and the endoscopic image under certain conditions.

  16. Recruitment of the middle temporal area by tactile motion in congenital blindness

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ptito, Maurice; Matteau, Isabelle; Gjedde, Albert

    2009-01-01

    We used positron emission tomography to investigate whether tactile motion discrimination activates the dorsal visual stream in congenitally blind (CB) participants compared with sighted controls. The tactile stimuli consisted of either static dots, dots moving coherently in one of two possible...

  17. Spatial vision in insects is facilitated by shaping the dynamics of visual input through behavioural action

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin eEgelhaaf

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Insects such as flies or bees, with their miniature brains, are able to control highly aerobatic flight manoeuvres and to solve spatial vision tasks, such as avoiding collisions with obstacles, landing on objects or even localizing a previously learnt inconspicuous goal on the basis of environmental cues. With regard to solving such spatial tasks, these insects still outperform man-made autonomous flying systems. To accomplish their extraordinary performance, flies and bees have been shown by their characteristic behavioural actions to actively shape the dynamics of the image flow on their eyes (optic flow. The neural processing of information about the spatial layout of the environment is greatly facilitated by segregating the rotational from the translational optic flow component through a saccadic flight and gaze strategy. This active vision strategy thus enables the nervous system to solve apparently complex spatial vision tasks in a particularly efficient and parsimonious way. The key idea of this review is that biological agents, such as flies or bees, acquire at least part of their strength as autonomous systems through active interactions with their environment and not by simply processing passively gained information about the world. These agent-environment interactions lead to adaptive behaviour in surroundings of a wide range of complexity. Animals with even tiny brains, such as insects, are capable of performing extraordinarily well in their behavioural contexts by making optimal use of the closed action–perception loop. Model simulations and robotic implementations show that the smart biological mechanisms of motion computation and visually-guided flight control might be helpful to find technical solutions, for example, when designing micro air vehicles carrying a miniaturized, low-weight on-board processor.

  18. A Case Study of Tactile Language and its Possible Structure

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dammeyer, Jesper Herup; Nielsen, Anja; Strøm, Emilie

    2015-01-01

    Few published research papers concern the study of communication and language development among children with congenital deafblindness. The aim of this study is to explore and discuss linguistic features of what may be considered as tactile languages. By analysing one pilot video observation of a...... on direction, speed and acceleration of movements, pressure, and body position. It is discussed how tactile languages, if they exist, can be studied from its unique bodily-tactile nature and not as a modification of visual sign languages.......Few published research papers concern the study of communication and language development among children with congenital deafblindness. The aim of this study is to explore and discuss linguistic features of what may be considered as tactile languages. By analysing one pilot video observation...... of a five year old congenital deafblind child communicating with his mother about a slide experience tactile linguistic features of phonology, morphology, semantics and syntax were explored. The linguistic features of tactile language were found to involve a potential unique and complex structure based...

  19. Audio-tactile integration and the influence of musical training.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anja Kuchenbuch

    Full Text Available Perception of our environment is a multisensory experience; information from different sensory systems like the auditory, visual and tactile is constantly integrated. Complex tasks that require high temporal and spatial precision of multisensory integration put strong demands on the underlying networks but it is largely unknown how task experience shapes multisensory processing. Long-term musical training is an excellent model for brain plasticity because it shapes the human brain at functional and structural levels, affecting a network of brain areas. In the present study we used magnetoencephalography (MEG to investigate how audio-tactile perception is integrated in the human brain and if musicians show enhancement of the corresponding activation compared to non-musicians. Using a paradigm that allowed the investigation of combined and separate auditory and tactile processing, we found a multisensory incongruency response, generated in frontal, cingulate and cerebellar regions, an auditory mismatch response generated mainly in the auditory cortex and a tactile mismatch response generated in frontal and cerebellar regions. The influence of musical training was seen in the audio-tactile as well as in the auditory condition, indicating enhanced higher-order processing in musicians, while the sources of the tactile MMN were not influenced by long-term musical training. Consistent with the predictive coding model, more basic, bottom-up sensory processing was relatively stable and less affected by expertise, whereas areas for top-down models of multisensory expectancies were modulated by training.

  20. Audio-tactile integration and the influence of musical training.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuchenbuch, Anja; Paraskevopoulos, Evangelos; Herholz, Sibylle C; Pantev, Christo

    2014-01-01

    Perception of our environment is a multisensory experience; information from different sensory systems like the auditory, visual and tactile is constantly integrated. Complex tasks that require high temporal and spatial precision of multisensory integration put strong demands on the underlying networks but it is largely unknown how task experience shapes multisensory processing. Long-term musical training is an excellent model for brain plasticity because it shapes the human brain at functional and structural levels, affecting a network of brain areas. In the present study we used magnetoencephalography (MEG) to investigate how audio-tactile perception is integrated in the human brain and if musicians show enhancement of the corresponding activation compared to non-musicians. Using a paradigm that allowed the investigation of combined and separate auditory and tactile processing, we found a multisensory incongruency response, generated in frontal, cingulate and cerebellar regions, an auditory mismatch response generated mainly in the auditory cortex and a tactile mismatch response generated in frontal and cerebellar regions. The influence of musical training was seen in the audio-tactile as well as in the auditory condition, indicating enhanced higher-order processing in musicians, while the sources of the tactile MMN were not influenced by long-term musical training. Consistent with the predictive coding model, more basic, bottom-up sensory processing was relatively stable and less affected by expertise, whereas areas for top-down models of multisensory expectancies were modulated by training.

  1. Linking attentional processes and conceptual problem solving: visual cues facilitate the automaticity of extracting relevant information from diagrams.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rouinfar, Amy; Agra, Elise; Larson, Adam M; Rebello, N Sanjay; Loschky, Lester C

    2014-01-01

    This study investigated links between visual attention processes and conceptual problem solving. This was done by overlaying visual cues on conceptual physics problem diagrams to direct participants' attention to relevant areas to facilitate problem solving. Participants (N = 80) individually worked through four problem sets, each containing a diagram, while their eye movements were recorded. Each diagram contained regions that were relevant to solving the problem correctly and separate regions related to common incorrect responses. Problem sets contained an initial problem, six isomorphic training problems, and a transfer problem. The cued condition saw visual cues overlaid on the training problems. Participants' verbal responses were used to determine their accuracy. This study produced two major findings. First, short duration visual cues which draw attention to solution-relevant information and aid in the organizing and integrating of it, facilitate both immediate problem solving and generalization of that ability to new problems. Thus, visual cues can facilitate re-representing a problem and overcoming impasse, enabling a correct solution. Importantly, these cueing effects on problem solving did not involve the solvers' attention necessarily embodying the solution to the problem, but were instead caused by solvers attending to and integrating relevant information in the problems into a solution path. Second, this study demonstrates that when such cues are used across multiple problems, solvers can automatize the extraction of problem-relevant information extraction. These results suggest that low-level attentional selection processes provide a necessary gateway for relevant information to be used in problem solving, but are generally not sufficient for correct problem solving. Instead, factors that lead a solver to an impasse and to organize and integrate problem information also greatly facilitate arriving at correct solutions.

  2. Development of a System to Assist Automatic Translation of Hand-Drawn Maps into Tactile Graphics and Its Usability Evaluation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jianjun Chen

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Tactile graphics are images that use raised surfaces so that a visually impaired person can feel them. Tactile maps are used by blind and partially sighted people when navigating around an environment, and they are also used prior to a visit for orientation purposes. Since the ability to read tactile graphics deeply depends on individuals, providing tactile graphics individually is needed. This implies that producing tactile graphics should be as simple as possible. Based on this background, we are developing a system for automating production of tactile maps from hand-drawn figures. In this paper, we first present a pattern recognition method for hand-drawn maps. The usability of our system is then evaluated by comparing it with the two different methods to produce tactile graphics.

  3. Braille in the Sighted: Teaching Tactile Reading to Sighted Adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bola, Łukasz; Siuda-Krzywicka, Katarzyna; Paplińska, Małgorzata; Sumera, Ewa; Hańczur, Paweł; Szwed, Marcin

    2016-01-01

    Blind people are known to have superior perceptual abilities in their remaining senses. Several studies suggest that these enhancements are dependent on the specific experience of blind individuals, who use those remaining senses more than sighted subjects. In line with this view, sighted subjects, when trained, are able to significantly progress in relatively simple tactile tasks. However, the case of complex tactile tasks is less obvious, as some studies suggest that visual deprivation itself could confer large advantages in learning them. It remains unclear to what extent those complex skills, such as braille reading, can be learnt by sighted subjects. Here we enrolled twenty-nine sighted adults, mostly braille teachers and educators, in a 9-month braille reading course. At the beginning of the course, all subjects were naive in tactile braille reading. After the course, almost all were able to read whole braille words at a mean speed of 6 words-per-minute. Subjects with low tactile acuity did not differ significantly in braille reading speed from the rest of the group, indicating that low tactile acuity is not a limiting factor for learning braille, at least at this early stage of learning. Our study shows that most sighted adults can learn whole-word braille reading, given the right method and a considerable amount of motivation. The adult sensorimotor system can thus adapt, to some level, to very complex tactile tasks without visual deprivation. The pace of learning in our group was comparable to congenitally and early blind children learning braille in primary school, which suggests that the blind's mastery of complex tactile tasks can, to a large extent, be explained by experience-dependent mechanisms.

  4. Tactile-STAR: A Novel Tactile STimulator And Recorder System for Evaluating and Improving Tactile Perception.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ballardini, Giulia; Carlini, Giorgio; Giannoni, Psiche; Scheidt, Robert A; Nisky, Ilana; Casadio, Maura

    2018-01-01

    Many neurological diseases impair the motor and somatosensory systems. While several different technologies are used in clinical practice to assess and improve motor functions, somatosensation is evaluated subjectively with qualitative clinical scales. Treatment of somatosensory deficits has received limited attention. To bridge the gap between the assessment and training of motor vs. somatosensory abilities, we designed, developed, and tested a novel, low-cost, two-component (bimanual) mechatronic system targeting tactile somatosensation: the Tactile-STAR -a tactile stimulator and recorder. The stimulator is an actuated pantograph structure driven by two servomotors, with an end-effector covered by a rubber material that can apply two different types of skin stimulation: brush and stretch. The stimulator has a modular design, and can be used to test the tactile perception in different parts of the body such as the hand, arm, leg, big toe, etc. The recorder is a passive pantograph that can measure hand motion using two potentiometers. The recorder can serve multiple purposes: participants can move its handle to match the direction and amplitude of the tactile stimulator, or they can use it as a master manipulator to control the tactile stimulator as a slave. Our ultimate goal is to assess and affect tactile acuity and somatosensory deficits. To demonstrate the feasibility of our novel system, we tested the Tactile-STAR with 16 healthy individuals and with three stroke survivors using the skin-brush stimulation. We verified that the system enables the mapping of tactile perception on the hand in both populations. We also tested the extent to which 30 min of training in healthy individuals led to an improvement of tactile perception. The results provide a first demonstration of the ability of this new system to characterize tactile perception in healthy individuals, as well as a quantification of the magnitude and pattern of tactile impairment in a small cohort of

  5. Tactile spatial resolution in blind braille readers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Boven, R W; Hamilton, R H; Kauffman, T; Keenan, J P; Pascual-Leone, A

    2000-06-27

    To determine if blind people have heightened tactile spatial acuity. Recently, studies using magnetic source imaging and somatosensory evoked potentials have shown that the cortical representation of the reading fingers of blind Braille readers is expanded compared to that of fingers of sighted subjects. Furthermore, the visual cortex is activated during certain tactile tasks in blind subjects but not sighted subjects. The authors hypothesized that the expanded cortical representation of fingers used in Braille reading may reflect an enhanced fidelity in the neural transmission of spatial details of a stimulus. If so, the quantitative limit of spatial acuity would be superior in blind people. The authors employed a grating orientation discrimination task in which threshold performance is accounted for by the spatial resolution limits of the neural image evoked by a stimulus. The authors quantified the psychophysical limits of spatial acuity at the middle and index fingers of 15 blind Braille readers and 15 sighted control subjects. The mean grating orientation threshold was significantly (p = 0.03) lower in the blind group (1.04 mm) compared to the sighted group (1.46 mm). The self-reported dominant reading finger in blind subjects had a mean grating orientation threshold of 0.80 mm, which was significantly better than other fingers tested. Thresholds at non-Braille reading fingers in blind subjects averaged 1.12 mm, which were also superior to sighted subjects' performances. Superior tactile spatial acuity in blind Braille readers may represent an adaptive, behavioral correlate of cortical plasticity.

  6. Research for improved flexible tactile sensor sensitivity

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yun, Hae Yong; Kim, Ho Chan [Andong National University, Andong (Korea, Republic of); Lee, In Hwan [Chungbuk National University, Chungju (Korea, Republic of)

    2015-11-15

    With the development of robotic technologies, in recent years these technologies have been applied to multidisciplinary fields of study. To operate similarly to a human being, many robot technologies require devices that can receive exterior stimulus, temperature, visual data, and the sense of smell, etc. The robot's hand needs sensor devices that can receive exterior stimuli in order to operate similarly to human skin. The flexible tactile sensor for the robot has to be manufactured to have a shape similar to the shape of human skin. The research studied the development of a system and materials that will enable exterior stimuli to be received effectively. This research used carbon nano tube as a material. Carbon nano tube is used because it has a high electrical conductivity and outstanding mechanical characteristics. In addition, the two composite Materials are used to improve the stimulation sensitivity at different rates, the flexible tactile sensor to measure the sensitivity. Using 3D printing technology, the fabrication of a flexible tactile sensor system is introduced.

  7. Research for improved flexible tactile sensor sensitivity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yun, Hae Yong; Kim, Ho Chan; Lee, In Hwan

    2015-01-01

    With the development of robotic technologies, in recent years these technologies have been applied to multidisciplinary fields of study. To operate similarly to a human being, many robot technologies require devices that can receive exterior stimulus, temperature, visual data, and the sense of smell, etc. The robot's hand needs sensor devices that can receive exterior stimuli in order to operate similarly to human skin. The flexible tactile sensor for the robot has to be manufactured to have a shape similar to the shape of human skin. The research studied the development of a system and materials that will enable exterior stimuli to be received effectively. This research used carbon nano tube as a material. Carbon nano tube is used because it has a high electrical conductivity and outstanding mechanical characteristics. In addition, the two composite Materials are used to improve the stimulation sensitivity at different rates, the flexible tactile sensor to measure the sensitivity. Using 3D printing technology, the fabrication of a flexible tactile sensor system is introduced.

  8. Bodily illusions disrupt tactile sensations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Amour, Sarah; Pritchett, Lisa M; Harris, Laurence R

    2015-02-01

    To accurately interpret tactile information, the brain needs to have an accurate representation of the body to which to refer the sensations. Despite this, body representation has only recently been incorporated into the study of tactile perception. Here, we investigate whether distortions of body representation affect tactile sensations. We perceptually altered the length of the arm and the width of the waist using a tendon vibration illusion and measured spatial acuity and sensitivity. Surprisingly, we found reduction in both tactile acuity and sensitivity thresholds when the arm or waist was perceptually altered, which indicates a general disruption of low-level tactile processing. We postulate that the disruptive changes correspond to the preliminary stage as the body representation starts to change and may give new insights into sensory processing in people with long-term or sudden abnormal body representation such as are found in eating disorders or following amputation.

  9. Email-Set Visualization: Facilitating Re-Finding in Email Archives

    OpenAIRE

    Gorton, Douglas; Murthy, Uma; Vemuri, Naga Srinivas; Pérez-Quiñones, Manuel A.

    2007-01-01

    In this paper we describe ESVT – EmailSet Visualization Tool, an email archive tool that provides users a visualization to re-find and discover information in their email archive. ESVT is an end-to-end email archive tool that can be used from archiving a user’s email messages to visualizing queries on the email archive. We address email archiving by allowing import of email messages from an email server or from a standard existing email client. The central idea in ESVT’s visualization, an “em...

  10. Using Modality Replacement to Facilitate Communication between Visually and Hearing-Impaired People

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Moustakas, K.; Tzovaras, D.; Dybkjaer, L.

    2011-01-01

    Using sign language, speech, and haptics as communication modalities, a virtual treasure-hunting game serves as an entertainment and educational tool for visually-and hearing-impaired users.......Using sign language, speech, and haptics as communication modalities, a virtual treasure-hunting game serves as an entertainment and educational tool for visually-and hearing-impaired users....

  11. How a Visual Language of Abstract Shapes Facilitates Cultural and International Border Crossings

    Science.gov (United States)

    Conroy, Arthur Thomas, III

    2016-01-01

    This article describes a visual language comprised of abstract shapes that has been shown to be effective in communicating prior knowledge between and within members of a small team or group. The visual language includes a set of geometric shapes and rules that guide the construction of the abstract diagrams that are the external representation of…

  12. "Hot" Facilitation of "Cool" Processing: Emotional Distraction Can Enhance Priming of Visual Search

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kristjansson, Arni; Oladottir, Berglind; Most, Steven B.

    2013-01-01

    Emotional stimuli often capture attention and disrupt effortful cognitive processing. However, cognitive processes vary in the degree to which they require effort. We investigated the impact of emotional pictures on visual search and on automatic priming of search. Observers performed visual search after task-irrelevant neutral or emotionally…

  13. Facilitating the design of multidimensional and local transfer functions for volume visualization

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sereda, P.

    2007-01-01

    The importance of volume visualization is increasing since the sizes of the datasets that need to be inspected grow with every new version of medical scanners (e.g., CT and MR). Direct volume rendering is a 3D visualization technique that has, in many cases, clear benefits over 2D views. It is able

  14. Inducing circular vection with tactile stimulation encircling the waist

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tinga, A.M.; Jansen, C.; Smagt, M.J. van der; Nijboer, T.C.W.; Erp, J.B.F. van

    2018-01-01

    In general, moving sensory stimuli (visual and auditory) can induce illusory sensations of self-motion (i.e. vection) in the direction opposite of the sensory stimulation. The aim of the current study was to examine whether tactile stimulation encircling the waist could induce circular vection

  15. Facilitation of listening comprehension by visual information under noisy listening condition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kashimada, Chiho; Ito, Takumi; Ogita, Kazuki; Hasegawa, Hiroshi; Kamata, Kazuo; Ayama, Miyoshi

    2009-02-01

    Comprehension of a sentence under a wide range of delay conditions between auditory and visual stimuli was measured in the environment with low auditory clarity of the level of -10dB and -15dB pink noise. Results showed that the image was helpful for comprehension of the noise-obscured voice stimulus when the delay between the auditory and visual stimuli was 4 frames (=132msec) or less, the image was not helpful for comprehension when the delay between the auditory and visual stimulus was 8 frames (=264msec) or more, and in some cases of the largest delay (32 frames), the video image interfered with comprehension.

  16. Involvement of the visual change detection process in facilitating perceptual alternation in the bistable image.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Urakawa, Tomokazu; Bunya, Mao; Araki, Osamu

    2017-08-01

    A bistable image induces one of two perceptual alternatives. When the bistable visual image is continuously viewed, the percept of the image alternates from one possible percept to the other. Perceptual alternation was previously reported to be induced by an exogenous perturbation in the bistable image, and this perturbation was theoretically interpreted to cause neural noise, prompting a transition between two stable perceptual states. However, little is known experimentally about the visual processing of exogenously driven perceptual alternation. Based on the findings of a previous behavioral study (Urakawa et al. in Perception 45:474-482, 2016), the present study hypothesized that the automatic visual change detection process, which is relevant to the detection of a visual change in a sequence of visual events, has an enhancing effect on the induction of perceptual alternation, similar to neural noise. In order to clarify this issue, we developed a novel experimental paradigm in which visual mismatch negativity (vMMN), an electroencephalographic brain response that reflects visual change detection, was evoked while participants continuously viewed the bistable image. In terms of inter-individual differences in neural and behavioral data, we found that enhancements in the peak amplitude of vMMN1, early vMMN at a latency of approximately 150 ms, correlated with increases in the proportion of perceptual alternation across participants. Our results indicate the involvement of automatic visual change detection in the induction of perceptual alternation, similar to neural noise, thereby providing a deeper insight into the neural mechanisms underlying exogenously driven perceptual alternation in the bistable image.

  17. The tactile movement aftereffect.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hollins, M; Favorov, O

    1994-01-01

    The existence of a tactile movement aftereffect was established in a series of experiments on the palmar surface of the hand and fingers of psychophysical observers. During adaptation, observers cupped their hand around a moving drum for up to 3 min; following this period of stimulation, they typically reported an aftereffect consisting of movement sensations located on and deep to the skin, and lasting for up to 1 min. Preliminary experiments comparing a number of stimulus materials mounted on the drum demonstrated that a surface approximating a low-spatial-frequency square wave, with a smooth microtexture, was especially effective at inducing the aftereffect; this adapting stimulus was therefore used throughout the two main experiments. In Experiment 1, the vividness of the aftereffect produced by 2 min of adaptation was determined under three test conditions: with the hand (1) remaining on the now stationary drum; (2) in contact with a soft, textured surface; or (3) suspended in air. Subjects' free magnitude estimates of the peak vividness of the aftereffect were not significantly different across conditions; each subject experienced the aftereffect at least once under each condition. Thus the tactile movement aftereffect does not seem to depend critically on the ponditions of stimulation that obtain while it is being experienced. In Experiment 2, the vividness and duration of the aftereffect were measured as a function of the duration of the adapting stimulus. Both measures increased steadily over the range of durations explored (30-180 sec). In its dependence on adapting duration, the aftereffect resembles the waterfall illusion in vision. An explanation for the tactile movement aftereffect is proposed, based on the model of cortical dynamics of Whitsel et al. (1989, 1991). With assumed modest variation of one parameter across individuals, this application of the model is able to account both for the data of the majority of subjects, who experienced the

  18. Tactile score a knowledge media for tactile sense

    CERN Document Server

    Suzuki, Yasuhiro

    2014-01-01

    This book deals with one of the most novel advances in natural computing, namely, in the field of tactile sense analysis. Massage, which provides relaxation and stimulation for human beings, is analyzed in this book for the first time by encoding the motions and tactile senses involved. The target audience is not limited to researchers who are interested in natural computing but also includes those working in ergonomic design, biomedical engineering, Kansei engineering, and cognitive science.

  19. Tactile display for virtual 3D shape rendering

    CERN Document Server

    Mansutti, Alessandro; Bordegoni, Monica; Cugini, Umberto

    2017-01-01

    This book describes a novel system for the simultaneous visual and tactile rendering of product shapes which allows designers to simultaneously touch and see new product shapes during the conceptual phase of product development. This system offers important advantages, including potential cost and time savings, compared with the standard product design process in which digital 3D models and physical prototypes are often repeatedly modified until an optimal design is achieved. The system consists of a tactile display that is able to represent, within a real environment, the shape of a product. Designers can explore the rendered surface by touching curves lying on the product shape, selecting those curves that can be considered style features and evaluating their aesthetic quality. In order to physically represent these selected curves, a flexible surface is modeled by means of servo-actuated modules controlling a physical deforming strip. The tactile display is designed so as to be portable, low cost, modular,...

  20. The phase of prestimulus alpha oscillations affects tactile perception.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ai, Lei; Ro, Tony

    2014-03-01

    Previous studies have shown that neural oscillations in the 8- to 12-Hz range influence sensory perception. In the current study, we examined whether both the power and phase of these mu/alpha oscillations predict successful conscious tactile perception. Near-threshold tactile stimuli were applied to the left hand while electroencephalographic (EEG) activity was recorded over the contralateral right somatosensory cortex. We found a significant inverted U-shaped relationship between prestimulus mu/alpha power and detection rate, suggesting that there is an intermediate level of alpha power that is optimal for tactile perception. We also found a significant difference in phase angle concentration at stimulus onset that predicted whether the upcoming tactile stimulus was perceived or missed. As has been shown in the visual system, these findings suggest that these mu/alpha oscillations measured over somatosensory areas exert a strong inhibitory control on tactile perception and that pulsed inhibition by these oscillations shapes the state of brain activity necessary for conscious perception. They further suggest that these common phasic processing mechanisms across different sensory modalities and brain regions may reflect a common underlying encoding principle in perceptual processing that leads to momentary windows of perceptual awareness.

  1. Tactile Stimulation and Consumer Response.

    OpenAIRE

    Hornik, Jacob

    1992-01-01

    Tactile behavior is a basic communication form as well as an expression of interpersonal involvement. This article presents three studies offering evidence for the positive role of casual interpersonal touch on consumer behavior. More specifically, it provides initial support for the view that tactile stimulation in various consumer behavior situations enhances the positive feeling for and evaluation of both the external stimuli and the touching source. Further, customers touched by a request...

  2. Facilitation and inhibition of visual display search processes through use of colour

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nes, van F.L.; Juola, J.F.; Moonen, R.J.A.M.

    1987-01-01

    The effect of colour differences on visual search of videotex displays has been investigated in several experiments, including one with accurate measurements of eye movements. Subjects had to search for specific target words on display pages with normal text in one, two or four colours. The

  3. Visualizing Veins With Near-Infrared Light to Facilitate Blood Withdrawal in Children

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cuper, Natascha J.; Verdaasdonk, Rudolf M.; de Roode, Rowland; de Vooght, Karen M. K.; Viergever, Max A.; Kalkman, Cor J.; de Graaff, Jurgen C.

    Introduction. This study aims to evaluate for the first time the value of visualizing veins by a prototype of a near-infrared (NIR) vascular imaging system for venipuncture in children. Methods. An observational feasibility study of venipunctures in children (0-6 years) attending the clinical

  4. Contralateral tactile masking between forearms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Amour, Sarah; Harris, Laurence R

    2014-03-01

    Masking effects have been demonstrated in which tactile sensitivity is affected when one touch is close to another on the body surface. Such effects are likely a result of local lateral inhibitory circuits that sharpen the spatial tuning of a given tactile receptor. Mutually inhibitory pathways have also been demonstrated between cortical tactile maps of the two halves of the body. Occasional reports have indicated that touches on one hand or forearm can affect tactile sensitivity at contralateral locations. Here, we measure the spatial tuning and effect of posture on this contralateral masking effect. Tactile sensitivity was measured on one forearm, while vibrotactile masking stimulation was applied to the opposite arm. Results were compared to sensitivity while vibrotactile stimulation was applied to a control site on the right shoulder. Sensitivity on the forearm was reduced by over 3 dB when the arms were touching and by 0.52 dB when they were held parallel. The masking effect depended on the position of the masking stimulus. Its effectiveness fell off by 1 STD when the stimulus was 29 % of arm length from the corresponding contralateral point. This long-range inhibitory effect in the tactile system suggests a surprisingly intimate relationship between the two sides of the body.

  5. Facilitating role of 3D multimodal visualization and learning rehearsal in memory recall.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Do, Phuong T; Moreland, John R

    2014-04-01

    The present study investigated the influence of 3D multimodal visualization and learning rehearsal on memory recall. Participants (N = 175 college students ranging from 21 to 25 years) were assigned to different training conditions and rehearsal processes to learn a list of 14 terms associated with construction of a wood-frame house. They then completed a memory test determining their cognitive ability to free recall the definitions of the 14 studied terms immediately after training and rehearsal. The audiovisual modality training condition was associated with the highest accuracy, and the visual- and auditory-modality conditions with lower accuracy rates. The no-training condition indicated little learning acquisition. A statistically significant increase in performance accuracy for the audiovisual condition as a function of rehearsal suggested the relative importance of rehearsal strategies in 3D observational learning. Findings revealed the potential application of integrating virtual reality and cognitive sciences to enhance learning and teaching effectiveness.

  6. Selective visual scaling of time-scale processes facilitates broadband learning of isometric force frequency tracking.

    Science.gov (United States)

    King, Adam C; Newell, Karl M

    2015-10-01

    The experiment investigated the effect of selectively augmenting faster time scales of visual feedback information on the learning and transfer of continuous isometric force tracking tasks to test the generality of the self-organization of 1/f properties of force output. Three experimental groups tracked an irregular target pattern either under a standard fixed gain condition or with selectively enhancement in the visual feedback display of intermediate (4-8 Hz) or high (8-12 Hz) frequency components of the force output. All groups reduced tracking error over practice, with the error lowest in the intermediate scaling condition followed by the high scaling and fixed gain conditions, respectively. Selective visual scaling induced persistent changes across the frequency spectrum, with the strongest effect in the intermediate scaling condition and positive transfer to novel feedback displays. The findings reveal an interdependence of the timescales in the learning and transfer of isometric force output frequency structures consistent with 1/f process models of the time scales of motor output variability.

  7. Virtual environment tactile system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Renzi, Ronald

    1996-01-01

    A method for providing a realistic sense of touch in virtual reality by means of programmable actuator assemblies is disclosed. Each tactile actuator assembly consists of a number of individual actuators whose movement is controlled by a computer and associated drive electronics. When an actuator is energized, the rare earth magnet and the associated contactor, incorporated within the actuator, are set in motion by the opposing electromagnetic field of a surrounding coil. The magnet pushes the contactor forward to contact the skin resulting in the sensation of touch. When the electromagnetic field is turned off, the rare earth magnet and the contactor return to their neutral positions due to the magnetic equilibrium caused by the interaction with the ferrous outer sleeve. The small size and flexible nature of the actuator assemblies permit incorporation into a glove, boot or body suit. The actuator has additional applications, such as, for example, as an accelerometer, an actuator for precisely controlled actuations or to simulate the sensation of braille letters.

  8. Own-race and own-age biases facilitate visual awareness of faces under interocular suppression

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Timo eStein

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available The detection of a face in a visual scene is the first stage in the face processing hierarchy. Although all subsequent, more elaborate face processing depends on the initial detection of a face, surprisingly little is known about the perceptual mechanisms underlying face detection. Recent evidence suggests that relatively hard-wired face detection mechanisms are broadly tuned to all face-like visual patterns as long as they respect the typical spatial configuration of the eyes above the mouth. Here, we qualify this notion by showing that face detection mechanisms are also sensitive to face shape and facial surface reflectance properties. We used continuous flash suppression (CFS to render faces invisible at the beginning of a trial and measured the time upright and inverted faces needed to break into awareness. Young Caucasian adult observers were presented with faces from their own race or from another race (race experiment and with faces from their own age group or from another age group (age experiment. Faces matching the observers’ own race and age group were detected more quickly. Moreover, the advantage of upright over inverted faces in overcoming CFS, i.e. the face inversion effect, was larger for own-race and own-age faces. These results demonstrate that differences in face shape and surface reflectance influence access to awareness and configural face processing at the initial detection stage. Although we did not collect data from observers of another race or age group, these findings are a first indication that face detection mechanisms are shaped by visual experience with faces from one’s own social group. Such experience-based fine-tuning of face detection mechanisms may equip in-group faces with a competitive advantage for access to conscious awareness.

  9. Early vision impairs tactile perception in the blind.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Röder, Brigitte; Rösler, Frank; Spence, Charles

    2004-01-20

    Researchers have known for more than a century that crossing the hands can impair both tactile perception and the execution of appropriate finger movements. Sighted people find it more difficult to judge the temporal order when two tactile stimuli, one applied to either hand, are presented and their hands are crossed over the midline as compared to when they adopt a more typical uncrossed-hands posture. It has been argued that because of the dominant role of vision in motor planning and execution, tactile stimuli are remapped into externally defined coordinates (predominantly determined by visual inputs) that takes longer to achieve when external and body-centered codes (determined primarily by somatosensory/proprioceptive inputs) are in conflict and that involves both multisensory parietal and visual cortex. Here, we show that the performance of late, but not of congenitally, blind people was impaired by crossing the hands. Moreover, we provide the first empirical evidence for superior temporal order judgments (TOJs) for tactile stimuli in the congenitally blind. These findings suggest a critical role of childhood vision in modulating the perception of touch that may arise from the emergence of specific crossmodal links during development.

  10. Topographic generalization of tactile perceptual learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harrar, Vanessa; Spence, Charles; Makin, Tamar R

    2014-02-01

    Perceptual learning can improve our sensory abilities. Understanding its underlying mechanisms, in particular, when perceptual learning generalizes, has become a focus of research and controversy. Specifically, there is little consensus regarding the extent to which tactile perceptual learning generalizes across fingers. We measured tactile orientation discrimination abilities on 4 fingers (index and middle fingers of both hands), using psychophysical measures, before and after 4 training sessions on 1 finger. Given the somatotopic organization of the hand representation in the somatosensory cortex, the topography of the cortical areas underlying tactile perceptual learning can be inferred from the pattern of generalization across fingers; only fingers sharing cortical representation with the trained finger ought to improve with it. Following training, performance improved not only for the trained finger but also for its adjacent and homologous fingers. Although these fingers were not exposed to training, they nevertheless demonstrated similar levels of learning as the trained finger. Conversely, the performance of the finger that was neither adjacent nor homologous to the trained finger was unaffected by training, despite the fact that our procedure was designed to enhance generalization, as described in recent visual perceptual learning research. This pattern of improved performance is compatible with previous reports of neuronal receptive fields (RFs) in the primary somatosensory cortex (SI) spanning adjacent and homologous digits. We conclude that perceptual learning rooted in low-level cortex can still generalize, and suggest potential applications for the neurorehabilitation of syndromes associated with maladaptive plasticity in SI. PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved.

  11. Exploring potential social influences on brain potentials during anticipation of tactile stimulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shen, Guannan; Saby, Joni N; Drew, Ashley R; Marshall, Peter J

    2017-03-15

    This study explored interpersonal influences on electrophysiological responses during the anticipation of tactile stimulation. It is well-known that broad, negative-going potentials are present in the event-related potential (ERP) between a forewarning cue and a tactile stimulus. It has also been shown that the alpha-range mu rhythm shows a lateralized desynchronization over central electrode sites during anticipation of tactile stimulation of the hand. The current study used a tactile discrimination task in which a visual cue signaled that an upcoming stimulus would either be delivered 1500ms later to the participant's hand, to a task partner's hand, or to neither person. For the condition in which participants anticipated the tactile stimulation to their own hand, a negative potential (contingent negative variation, CNV) was observed in the ERP at central sites in the 1000ms prior to the tactile stimulus. Significant mu rhythm desynchronization was also present in the same time window. The magnitudes of the ERPs and of the mu desynchronization were greater in the contralateral than in the ipsilateral hemisphere prior to right hand stimulation. Similar ERP and EEG changes were not present when the visual cue indicated that stimulation would be delivered to the task partner or to neither person. The absence of social influences during anticipation of tactile stimulation, and the relationship between the two brain signatures of anticipatory attention (CNV and mu rhythm) are discussed. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  12. When Content Matters: The Role of Processing Code in Tactile Display Design.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferris, Thomas K; Sarter, Nadine

    2010-01-01

    The distribution of tasks and stimuli across multiple modalities has been proposed as a means to support multitasking in data-rich environments. Recently, the tactile channel and, more specifically, communication via the use of tactile/haptic icons have received considerable interest. Past research has examined primarily the impact of concurrent task modality on the effectiveness of tactile information presentation. However, it is not well known to what extent the interpretation of iconic tactile patterns is affected by another attribute of information: the information processing codes of concurrent tasks. In two driving simulation studies (n = 25 for each), participants decoded icons composed of either spatial or nonspatial patterns of vibrations (engaging spatial and nonspatial processing code resources, respectively) while concurrently interpreting spatial or nonspatial visual task stimuli. As predicted by Multiple Resource Theory, performance was significantly worse (approximately 5-10 percent worse) when the tactile icons and visual tasks engaged the same processing code, with the overall worst performance in the spatial-spatial task pairing. The findings from these studies contribute to an improved understanding of information processing and can serve as input to multidimensional quantitative models of timesharing performance. From an applied perspective, the results suggest that competition for processing code resources warrants consideration, alongside other factors such as the naturalness of signal-message mapping, when designing iconic tactile displays. Nonspatially encoded tactile icons may be preferable in environments which already rely heavily on spatial processing, such as car cockpits.

  13. Elevated expression of brain-derived neurotrophic factor facilitates visual imprinting in chicks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suzuki, Keiko; Maekawa, Fumihiko; Suzuki, Shingo; Nakamori, Tomoharu; Sugiyama, Hayato; Kanamatsu, Tomoyuki; Tanaka, Kohichi; Ohki-Hamazaki, Hiroko

    2012-12-01

    With the aim of elucidating the neural mechanisms of early learning, we studied the role of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in visual imprinting in birds. The telencephalic neural circuit connecting the visual Wulst and intermediate medial mesopallium is critical for imprinting, and the core region of the hyperpallium densocellulare (HDCo), situated at the center of this circuit, has a key role in regulating the activity of the circuit. We found that the number of BDNF mRNA-positive cells in the HDCo was elevated during the critical period, particularly at its onset, on the day of hatching (P0). After imprinting training on P1, BDNF mRNA-positive cells in the HDCo increased in number, and tyrosine phosphorylation of TrkB was observed. BDNF infusion into the HDCo at P1 induced imprinting, even with a weak training protocol that does not normally induce imprinting. In contrast, K252a, an antagonist of Trk, inhibited imprinting. Injection of BDNF at P7, after the critical period, did not elicit imprinting. These results suggest that BDNF promotes the induction of imprinting through TrkB exclusively during the critical period. © 2012 The Authors Journal of Neurochemistry © 2012 International Society for Neurochemistry.

  14. Haptically facilitated bimanual training combined with augmented visual feedback in moderate to severe hemiplegia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boos, Amy; Qiu, Qinyin; Fluet, Gerard G; Adamovich, Sergei V

    2011-01-01

    This study describes the design and feasibility testing of a hand rehabilitation system that provides haptic assistance for hand opening in moderate to severe hemiplegia while subjects attempt to perform bilateral hand movements. A cable-actuated exoskeleton robot assists the subjects in performing impaired finger movements but is controlled by movement of the unimpaired hand. In an attempt to combine the neurophysiological stimuli of bilateral movement and action observation during training, visual feedback of the impaired hand is replaced by feedback of the unimpaired hand, either by using a sagittaly oriented mirror or a virtual reality setup with a pair of virtual hands presented on a flat screen controlled with movement of the unimpaired hand, providing a visual image of their paretic hand moving normally. Joint angles for both hands are measured using data gloves. The system is programmed to maintain a symmetrical relationship between the two hands as they respond to commands to open and close simultaneously. Three persons with moderate to severe hemiplegia secondary to stroke trained with the system for eight, 30 to 60 minute sessions without adverse events. Each demonstrated positive motor adaptations to training. The system was well tolerated by persons with moderate to severe upper extremity hemiplegia. Further testing of its effects on motor ability with a broader range of clinical presentations is indicated.

  15. Enhancing performance expectancies through visual illusions facilitates motor learning in children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bahmani, Moslem; Wulf, Gabriele; Ghadiri, Farhad; Karimi, Saeed; Lewthwaite, Rebecca

    2017-10-01

    In a recent study by Chauvel, Wulf, and Maquestiaux (2015), golf putting performance was found to be affected by the Ebbinghaus illusion. Specifically, adult participants demonstrated more effective learning when they practiced with a hole that was surrounded by small circles, making it look larger, than when the hole was surrounded by large circles, making it look smaller. The present study examined whether this learning advantage would generalize to children who are assumed to be less sensitive to the visual illusion. Two groups of 10-year olds practiced putting golf balls from a distance of 2m, with perceived larger or smaller holes resulting from the visual illusion. Self-efficacy was increased in the group with the perceived larger hole. The latter group also demonstrated more accurate putting performance during practice. Importantly, learning (i.e., delayed retention performance without the illusion) was enhanced in the group that practiced with the perceived larger hole. The findings replicate previous results with adult learners and are in line with the notion that enhanced performance expectancies are key to optimal motor learning (Wulf & Lewthwaite, 2016). Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Tactile acuity charts: a reliable measure of spatial acuity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Patrick Bruns

    Full Text Available For assessing tactile spatial resolution it has recently been recommended to use tactile acuity charts which follow the design principles of the Snellen letter charts for visual acuity and involve active touch. However, it is currently unknown whether acuity thresholds obtained with this newly developed psychophysical procedure are in accordance with established measures of tactile acuity that involve passive contact with fixed duration and control of contact force. Here we directly compared tactile acuity thresholds obtained with the acuity charts to traditional two-point and grating orientation thresholds in a group of young healthy adults. For this purpose, two types of charts, using either Braille-like dot patterns or embossed Landolt rings with different orientations, were adapted from previous studies. Measurements with the two types of charts were equivalent, but generally more reliable with the dot pattern chart. A comparison with the two-point and grating orientation task data showed that the test-retest reliability of the acuity chart measurements after one week was superior to that of the passive methods. Individual thresholds obtained with the acuity charts agreed reasonably with the grating orientation threshold, but less so with the two-point threshold that yielded relatively distinct acuity estimates compared to the other methods. This potentially considerable amount of mismatch between different measures of tactile acuity suggests that tactile spatial resolution is a complex entity that should ideally be measured with different methods in parallel. The simple test procedure and high reliability of the acuity charts makes them a promising complement and alternative to the traditional two-point and grating orientation thresholds.

  17. Tactile acuity charts: a reliable measure of spatial acuity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bruns, Patrick; Camargo, Carlos J; Campanella, Humberto; Esteve, Jaume; Dinse, Hubert R; Röder, Brigitte

    2014-01-01

    For assessing tactile spatial resolution it has recently been recommended to use tactile acuity charts which follow the design principles of the Snellen letter charts for visual acuity and involve active touch. However, it is currently unknown whether acuity thresholds obtained with this newly developed psychophysical procedure are in accordance with established measures of tactile acuity that involve passive contact with fixed duration and control of contact force. Here we directly compared tactile acuity thresholds obtained with the acuity charts to traditional two-point and grating orientation thresholds in a group of young healthy adults. For this purpose, two types of charts, using either Braille-like dot patterns or embossed Landolt rings with different orientations, were adapted from previous studies. Measurements with the two types of charts were equivalent, but generally more reliable with the dot pattern chart. A comparison with the two-point and grating orientation task data showed that the test-retest reliability of the acuity chart measurements after one week was superior to that of the passive methods. Individual thresholds obtained with the acuity charts agreed reasonably with the grating orientation threshold, but less so with the two-point threshold that yielded relatively distinct acuity estimates compared to the other methods. This potentially considerable amount of mismatch between different measures of tactile acuity suggests that tactile spatial resolution is a complex entity that should ideally be measured with different methods in parallel. The simple test procedure and high reliability of the acuity charts makes them a promising complement and alternative to the traditional two-point and grating orientation thresholds.

  18. Using multisensory cues to facilitate air traffic management.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ngo, Mary K; Pierce, Russell S; Spence, Charles

    2012-12-01

    In the present study, we sought to investigate whether auditory and tactile cuing could be used to facilitate a complex, real-world air traffic management scenario. Auditory and tactile cuing provides an effective means of improving both the speed and accuracy of participants' performance in a variety of laboratory-based visual target detection and identification tasks. A low-fidelity air traffic simulation task was used in which participants monitored and controlled aircraft.The participants had to ensure that the aircraft landed or exited at the correct altitude, speed, and direction and that they maintained a safe separation from all other aircraft and boundaries. The performance measures recorded included en route time, handoff delay, and conflict resolution delay (the performance measure of interest). In a baseline condition, the aircraft in conflict was highlighted in red (visual cue), and in the experimental conditions, this standard visual cue was accompanied by a simultaneously presented auditory, vibrotactile, or audiotactile cue. Participants responded significantly more rapidly, but no less accurately, to conflicts when presented with an additional auditory or audiotactile cue than with either a vibrotactile or visual cue alone. Auditory and audiotactile cues have the potential for improving operator performance by reducing the time it takes to detect and respond to potential visual target events. These results have important implications for the design and use of multisensory cues in air traffic management.

  19. Exploring the Invisible Universe: A Tactile and Braille Exhibit of Astronomical Images

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arcand, K. K.; Watzke, M.; de Pree, C.

    2010-06-01

    A tactile/Braille exhibit for the visually impaired community in the USA was launched in July 2009. The exhibit is part of the global From Earth to the Universe (FETTU) project, a Cornerstone of the International Year of Astronomy 2009. The science content of the travelling tactile/Braille exhibit includes explanations of our Sun, Eta Carinae, the Crab Nebula, the Whirlpool Galaxy and the electromagnetic spectrum, and was adapted from the tactile/Braille book Touch the Invisible Sky. We present some of the early observations and findings on the tactile/Braille FETTU exhibit. The new exhibit opens a wider door to experiencing and understanding astronomy for the underserved visually impaired population.

  20. Recent Progress in Technologies for Tactile Sensors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Xuguang; Xue, Ning; Li, Tong; Liu, Chang

    2018-01-01

    Over the last two decades, considerable scientific and technological efforts have been devoted to developing tactile sensing based on a variety of transducing mechanisms, with prospective applications in many fields such as human–machine interaction, intelligent robot tactile control and feedback, and tactile sensorized minimally invasive surgery. This paper starts with an introduction of human tactile systems, followed by a presentation of the basic demands of tactile sensors. State-of-the-art tactile sensors are reviewed in terms of their diverse sensing mechanisms, design consideration, and material selection. Subsequently, typical performances of the sensors, along with their advantages and disadvantages, are compared and analyzed. Two major potential applications of tactile sensing systems are discussed in detail. Lastly, we propose prospective research directions and market trends of tactile sensing systems. PMID:29565835

  1. Distributed dendritic processing facilitates object detection: a computational analysis on the visual system of the fly.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hennig, Patrick; Möller, Ralf; Egelhaaf, Martin

    2008-08-28

    Detecting objects is an important task when moving through a natural environment. Flies, for example, may land on salient objects or may avoid collisions with them. The neuronal ensemble of Figure Detection cells (FD-cells) in the visual system of the fly is likely to be involved in controlling these behaviours, as these cells are more sensitive to objects than to extended background structures. Until now the computations in the presynaptic neuronal network of FD-cells and, in particular, the functional significance of the experimentally established distributed dendritic processing of excitatory and inhibitory inputs is not understood. We use model simulations to analyse the neuronal computations responsible for the preference of FD-cells for small objects. We employed a new modelling approach which allowed us to account for the spatial spread of electrical signals in the dendrites while avoiding detailed compartmental modelling. The models are based on available physiological and anatomical data. Three models were tested each implementing an inhibitory neural circuit, but differing by the spatial arrangement of the inhibitory interaction. Parameter optimisation with an evolutionary algorithm revealed that only distributed dendritic processing satisfies the constraints arising from electrophysiological experiments. In contrast to a direct dendro-dendritic inhibition of the FD-cell (Direct Distributed Inhibition model), an inhibition of its presynaptic retinotopic elements (Indirect Distributed Inhibition model) requires smaller changes in input resistance in the inhibited neurons during visual stimulation. Distributed dendritic inhibition of retinotopic elements as implemented in our Indirect Distributed Inhibition model is the most plausible wiring scheme for the neuronal circuit of FD-cells. This microcircuit is computationally similar to lateral inhibition between the retinotopic elements. Hence, distributed inhibition might be an alternative explanation of

  2. Libraries as facilitators in access to information by visually impaired users

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tania Milca Malheiros

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available This article deals with the role of libraries as collaborators in the process of information acquisition by visually impaired users. It aims to show the importance of this role in the process of social inclusion of these users and the need to discuss this issue. As a fundamental point for its inclusion are the production and supply of alternative materials. The barriers faced in the process of information acquisition are cited, such as the lack of adapted materials and the cost of production. It also presents a history of the acquisition of information from these users and their inclusion in Brazilian and foreign libraries. The research method used was the literature review having been consulted the databaseLibrary and Information Science Abstracts (LISA, Library & Information Science and TechnologyAbstracts (LISTA, Information Science and Technology Abstracts (ISTA, Base de dados de Periódicos em Ciência da Informação (BRAPCI, Google and Google Scholar.As a conclusion, we point out the cooperation between library services as a solution to this issue.

  3. High Resolution Flexible Tactile Sensors

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Drimus, Alin; Bilberg, Arne

    2011-01-01

    both spatial distribution of pressure and dynamic events such as contact, release of contact and slip. Data acquisition and object recognition applications are described and it is proposed that such a sensor could be used in robotic grippers to improve object recognition, manipulation of objects......This paper describes the development of a tactile sensor for robotics inspired by the human sense of touch. It consists of two parts: a static tactile array sensor based on piezoresistive rubber and a dynamic sensor based on piezoelectric PVDF film. The combination of these two layers addresses...

  4. Visualization of oxytocin release that mediates paired pulse facilitation in hypothalamic pathways to brainstem autonomic neurons.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ramón A Piñol

    Full Text Available Recent work has shown that oxytocin is involved in more than lactation and uterine contraction. The paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus (PVN contains neuroendocrine neurons that control the release of hormones, including vasopressin and oxytocin. Other populations of PVN neurons do not release hormones, but rather project to and release neurotransmitters onto other neurons in the CNS involved in fluid retention, thermoregulation, sexual behavior and responses to stress. Activation of oxytocin receptors can be cardioprotective and reduces the adverse cardiovascular consequences of anxiety and stress, yet how oxytocin can affect heart rate and cardiac function is unknown. While anatomical work has shown the presence of peptides, including oxytocin, in the projections from the PVN to parasympathetic nuclei, electrophysiological studies to date have only demonstrated release of glutamate and activation of fast ligand gated receptors in these pathways. In this study, using rats, we directly show, using sniffer CHO cells that express oxytocin receptors and the Ca2+ indicator R-GECO, that optogenetic activation of channelrhodopsin-2 (ChR2 expressing PVN fibers in the brainstem activates oxytocin receptors in the dorsomotor nucleus of the vagus (DMNV. We also demonstrate that while a single photoactivation of PVN terminals only activates glutamatergic receptors in brainstem cardiac vagal neurons (CVNs, neurons that dominate the neural control of heart rate, both the paired pulse facilitation, and sustained enhancement of glutamate release in this pathway is mediated by activation of oxytocin receptors. Our results provide direct evidence that a pathway from the PVN likely releases oxytocin and enhances short-term plasticity of this critical autonomic connection.

  5. Visualization of Oxytocin Release that Mediates Paired Pulse Facilitation in Hypothalamic Pathways to Brainstem Autonomic Neurons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piñol, Ramón A.; Jameson, Heather; Popratiloff, Anastas; Lee, Norman H.; Mendelowitz, David

    2014-01-01

    Recent work has shown that oxytocin is involved in more than lactation and uterine contraction. The paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus (PVN) contains neuroendocrine neurons that control the release of hormones, including vasopressin and oxytocin. Other populations of PVN neurons do not release hormones, but rather project to and release neurotransmitters onto other neurons in the CNS involved in fluid retention, thermoregulation, sexual behavior and responses to stress. Activation of oxytocin receptors can be cardioprotective and reduces the adverse cardiovascular consequences of anxiety and stress, yet how oxytocin can affect heart rate and cardiac function is unknown. While anatomical work has shown the presence of peptides, including oxytocin, in the projections from the PVN to parasympathetic nuclei, electrophysiological studies to date have only demonstrated release of glutamate and activation of fast ligand gated receptors in these pathways. In this study, using rats, we directly show, using sniffer CHO cells that express oxytocin receptors and the Ca2+ indicator R-GECO, that optogenetic activation of channelrhodopsin-2 (ChR2) expressing PVN fibers in the brainstem activates oxytocin receptors in the dorsomotor nucleus of the vagus (DMNV). We also demonstrate that while a single photoactivation of PVN terminals only activates glutamatergic receptors in brainstem cardiac vagal neurons (CVNs), neurons that dominate the neural control of heart rate, both the paired pulse facilitation, and sustained enhancement of glutamate release in this pathway is mediated by activation of oxytocin receptors. Our results provide direct evidence that a pathway from the PVN likely releases oxytocin and enhances short-term plasticity of this critical autonomic connection. PMID:25379676

  6. An Adaptation-Induced Repulsion Illusion in Tactile Spatial Perception

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lux Li

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Following focal sensory adaptation, the perceived separation between visual stimuli that straddle the adapted region is often exaggerated. For instance, in the tilt aftereffect illusion, adaptation to tilted lines causes subsequently viewed lines with nearby orientations to be perceptually repelled from the adapted orientation. Repulsion illusions in the nonvisual senses have been less studied. Here, we investigated whether adaptation induces a repulsion illusion in tactile spatial perception. In a two-interval forced-choice task, participants compared the perceived separation between two point-stimuli applied on the forearms successively. Separation distance was constant on one arm (the reference and varied on the other arm (the comparison. In Experiment 1, we took three consecutive baseline measurements, verifying that in the absence of manipulation, participants’ distance perception was unbiased across arms and stable across experimental blocks. In Experiment 2, we vibrated a region of skin on the reference arm, verifying that this focally reduced tactile sensitivity, as indicated by elevated monofilament detection thresholds. In Experiment 3, we applied vibration between the two reference points in our distance perception protocol and discovered that this caused an illusory increase in the separation between the points. We conclude that focal adaptation induces a repulsion aftereffect illusion in tactile spatial perception. The illusion provides clues as to how the tactile system represents spatial information. The analogous repulsion aftereffects caused by adaptation in different stimulus domains and sensory systems may point to fundamentally similar strategies for dynamic sensory coding.

  7. Spatial auditory attention is modulated by tactile priming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Menning, Hans; Ackermann, Hermann; Hertrich, Ingo; Mathiak, Klaus

    2005-07-01

    Previous studies have shown that cross-modal processing affects perception at a variety of neuronal levels. In this study, event-related brain responses were recorded via whole-head magnetoencephalography (MEG). Spatial auditory attention was directed via tactile pre-cues (primes) to one of four locations in the peripersonal space (left and right hand versus face). Auditory stimuli were white noise bursts, convoluted with head-related transfer functions, which ensured spatial perception of the four locations. Tactile primes (200-300 ms prior to acoustic onset) were applied randomly to one of these locations. Attentional load was controlled by three different visual distraction tasks. The auditory P50m (about 50 ms after stimulus onset) showed a significant "proximity" effect (larger responses to face stimulation as well as a "contralaterality" effect between side of stimulation and hemisphere). The tactile primes essentially reduced both the P50m and N100m components. However, facial tactile pre-stimulation yielded an enhanced ipsilateral N100m. These results show that earlier responses are mainly governed by exogenous stimulus properties whereas cross-sensory interaction is spatially selective at a later (endogenous) processing stage.

  8. Small-scale tactile graphics for virtual reality systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberts, John W.; Slattery, Oliver T.; Swope, Brett; Min, Volker; Comstock, Tracy

    2002-05-01

    As virtual reality technology moves forward, there is a need to provide the user with options for greater realism for closer engagement to the human senses. Haptic systems use force feedback to create a large-scale sensation of physical interaction in a virtual environment. Further refinement can be created by using tactile graphics to reproduce a detailed sense of touch. For example, a haptic system might create the sensation of the weight of a virtual orange that the user picks up, and the sensation of pressure on the fingers as the user squeezes the orange. A tactile graphic system could create the texture of the orange on the user's fingertips. IN the real wold, a detailed sense of touch plays a large part in picking up and manipulating small objects. Our team is working to develop technology that can drive a high density fingertip array of tactile simulators at a rapid refresh rate, sufficient to produce a realistic sense of touch. To meet the project criteria, the mechanism must be much lower cost than existing technologies, and must be sufficiently lightweight and compact to permit portable use and to enable installation of the stimulator array in the fingertip of a tactile glove. The primary intended applications for this technology are accessibility for the blind and visually impaired, teleoperation, and virtual reality systems.

  9. Audio-Tactile Integration and the Influence of Musical Training

    OpenAIRE

    Kuchenbuch, Anja; Paraskevopoulos, Evangelos; Herholz, Sibylle C.; Pantev, Christo

    2014-01-01

    Perception of our environment is a multisensory experience; information from different sensory systems like the auditory, visual and tactile is constantly integrated. Complex tasks that require high temporal and spatial precision of multisensory integration put strong demands on the underlying networks but it is largely unknown how task experience shapes multisensory processing. Long-term musical training is an excellent model for brain plasticity because it shapes the human brain at function...

  10. Tactile pavement for guiding walking direction: An assessment of heading direction and gait stability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pluijter, Nanda; de Wit, Lieke P W; Bruijn, Sjoerd M; Plaisier, Myrthe A

    2015-10-01

    For maintaining heading direction while walking we heavily rely on vision. Therefore, walking in the absence of vision or with visual attention directed elsewhere potentially leads to dangerous situations. Here we investigated whether tactile information from the feet can be used as a (partial) substitute for vision in maintaining a stable heading direction. If so, participants should be better able to keep a constant heading direction on tactile pavement that indicates directionality than on regular flat pavement. However, such a pavement may also be destabilizing. Thus we asked participants to walk straight ahead on regular pavement, and on tactile pavement (tiles with ridges along the walking direction) while varying the amount of vision. We assessed the effects of the type of pavement as well as the amount of vision on the variability of the heading direction as well as gait stability. Both of these measures were calculated from accelerations and angular velocities recorded from a smartphone attached to the participants trunk. Results showed that on tactile pavement participants had a less variations in their heading direction than on regular pavement. The drawback, however, was that the tactile pavement used in this study decreased gait stability. In sum, tactile pavement can be used as a partial substitute for vision in maintaining heading direction, but it can also decrease gait stability. Future work should focus on designing tactile pavement that does provided directional clues, but is less destabilizing. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. Movement Induces the Use of External Spatial Coordinates for Tactile Localization in Congenitally Blind Humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heed, Tobias; Möller, Johanna; Röder, Brigitte

    2015-01-01

    To localize touch, the brain integrates spatial information coded in anatomically based and external spatial reference frames. Sighted humans, by default, use both reference frames in tactile localization. In contrast, congenitally blind individuals have been reported to rely exclusively on anatomical coordinates, suggesting a crucial role of the visual system for tactile spatial processing. We tested whether the use of external spatial information in touch can, alternatively, be induced by a movement context. Sighted and congenitally blind humans performed a tactile temporal order judgment task that indexes the use of external coordinates for tactile localization, while they executed bimanual arm movements with uncrossed and crossed start and end postures. In the sighted, start posture and planned end posture of the arm movement modulated tactile localization for stimuli presented before and during movement, indicating automatic, external recoding of touch. Contrary to previous findings, tactile localization of congenitally blind participants, too, was affected by external coordinates, though only for stimuli presented before movement start. Furthermore, only the movement's start posture, but not the planned end posture affected blind individuals' tactile performance. Thus, integration of external coordinates in touch is established without vision, though more selectively than when vision has developed normally, and possibly restricted to movement contexts. The lack of modulation by the planned posture in congenitally blind participants suggests that external coordinates in this group are not mediated by motor efference copy. Instead the task-related frequent posture changes, that is, movement consequences rather than planning, appear to have induced their use of external coordinates.

  12. Introducing the tactile speller: an ERP-based brain-computer interface for communication

    Science.gov (United States)

    van der Waal, Marjolein; Severens, Marianne; Geuze, Jeroen; Desain, Peter

    2012-08-01

    In this study, a tactile speller was developed and compared with existing visual speller paradigms in terms of classification performance and elicited event-related potentials (ERPs). The fingertips of healthy participants were stimulated with short mechanical taps while electroencephalographic activity was measured. The letters of the alphabet were allocated to different fingers and subjects could select one of the fingers by silently counting the number of taps on that finger. The offline and online performance of the tactile speller was compared to the overt and covert attention visual matrix speller and the covert attention Hex-o-Spell speller. For the tactile speller, binary target versus non-target classification accuracy was 67% on average. Classification and decoding accuracies of the tactile speller were lower than the overt matrix speller, but higher than the covert matrix speller, and similar to Hex-o-Spell. The average maximum information transfer rate of the tactile speller was 7.8 bits min-1 (1.51 char min-1), with the best subject reaching a bit-rate of 27 bits min-1 (5.22 char min-1). An increased amplitude of the P300 ERP component was found in response to attended stimuli versus unattended stimuli in all speller types. In addition, the tactile and overt matrix spellers also used the N2 component for discriminating between targets and non-targets. Overall, this study shows that it is possible to use a tactile speller for communication. The tactile speller provides a useful alternative to the visual speller, especially for people whose eye gaze is impaired.

  13. Neural correlates of tactile perception during pre-, peri-, and post-movement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Juravle, Georgiana; Heed, Tobias; Spence, Charles; Röder, Brigitte

    2016-05-01

    Tactile information is differentially processed over the various phases of goal-directed movements. Here, event-related potentials (ERPs) were used to investigate the neural correlates of tactile and visual information processing during movement. Participants performed goal-directed reaches for an object placed centrally on the table in front of them. Tactile and visual stimulation (100 ms) was presented in separate trials during the different phases of the movement (i.e. preparation, execution, and post-movement). These stimuli were independently delivered to either the moving or resting hand. In a control condition, the participants only performed the movement, while omission (i.e. movement-only) ERPs were recorded. Participants were instructed to ignore the presence or absence of any sensory events and to concentrate solely on the execution of the movement. Enhanced ERPs were observed 80-200 ms after tactile stimulation, as well as 100-250 ms after visual stimulation: These modulations were greatest during the execution of the goal-directed movement, and they were effector based (i.e. significantly more negative for stimuli presented to the moving hand). Furthermore, ERPs revealed enhanced sensory processing during goal-directed movements for visual stimuli as well. Such enhanced processing of both tactile and visual information during the execution phase suggests that incoming sensory information is continuously monitored for a potential adjustment of the current motor plan. Furthermore, the results reported here also highlight a tight coupling between spatial attention and the execution of motor actions.

  14. A Prototype Tactile Sensor Array.

    Science.gov (United States)

    1982-09-15

    Active Touch Sensing. Technical Report, MIT Artificial Inteligence Laboratory, 1981. (9] Larcombe, M. Carbon Fibre Tactile Sensors. Technical Report...thesis, Carnegie-Mellon University, 1981. [13] Purbrick, John A. A Force Transducer Employing Conductive Silicone Rubber. Technical Report, MIT Artificial

  15. Magnetic Nanocomposite Cilia Tactile Sensor

    KAUST Repository

    Alfadhel, Ahmed; Kosel, Jü rgen

    2015-01-01

    A multifunctional biomimetic nanocomposite tactile sensor is developed that can detect shear and vertical forces, feel texture, and measure flow with extremely low power consumption. The sensor's high performance is maintained within a wide operating range that can be easily adjusted. The concept works on rigid and flexible substrates and the sensors can be used in air or water without any modifications.

  16. Magnetic Nanocomposite Cilia Tactile Sensor

    KAUST Repository

    Alfadhel, Ahmed

    2015-10-21

    A multifunctional biomimetic nanocomposite tactile sensor is developed that can detect shear and vertical forces, feel texture, and measure flow with extremely low power consumption. The sensor\\'s high performance is maintained within a wide operating range that can be easily adjusted. The concept works on rigid and flexible substrates and the sensors can be used in air or water without any modifications.

  17. Tactile friction of topical formulations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skedung, L; Buraczewska-Norin, I; Dawood, N; Rutland, M W; Ringstad, L

    2016-02-01

    The tactile perception is essential for all types of topical formulations (cosmetic, pharmaceutical, medical device) and the possibility to predict the sensorial response by using instrumental methods instead of sensory testing would save time and cost at an early stage product development. Here, we report on an instrumental evaluation method using tactile friction measurements to estimate perceptual attributes of topical formulations. Friction was measured between an index finger and an artificial skin substrate after application of formulations using a force sensor. Both model formulations of liquid crystalline phase structures with significantly different tactile properties, as well as commercial pharmaceutical moisturizing creams being more tactile-similar, were investigated. Friction coefficients were calculated as the ratio of the friction force to the applied load. The structures of the model formulations and phase transitions as a result of water evaporation were identified using optical microscopy. The friction device could distinguish friction coefficients between the phase structures, as well as the commercial creams after spreading and absorption into the substrate. In addition, phase transitions resulting in alterations in the feel of the formulations could be detected. A correlation was established between skin hydration and friction coefficient, where hydrated skin gave rise to higher friction. Also a link between skin smoothening and finger friction was established for the commercial moisturizing creams, although further investigations are needed to analyse this and correlations with other sensorial attributes in more detail. The present investigation shows that tactile friction measurements have potential as an alternative or complement in the evaluation of perception of topical formulations. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  18. Making sense. What can we learn from experts of tactile knowledge?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Camilla Groth

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available This article describes an embodied way of making sense through making with the hands. We examine the potential o ftactile experience in the making process and analyse what tactile experiences mean. The study takes place in the context of an era marked by audio-visual dominance.The article presents a case study that observed and interviewed deafblind makers while they worked with clay. The findings reveal that modelling in clay resembles the visualisation process of sketching. As such, it may contribute to thinking through the hands. Language is not a self-evident communication tool for transferring tactile skills. Based on our case study, we propose the use of tactile communication in the process of transferring tactile knowledge through making with another person’s hands.

  19. O aprendizado da utilização da substituição sensorial visuo-tátil por pessoas com deficiência visual: primeiras experiências e estratégias metodológicas The learning of the use of the tactile-vision sensory substitution by people with visual disability: first experiences and methodological strategies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Virgínia Kastrup

    2009-08-01

    Full Text Available O sistema de substituição tátil-visual (TVSS é uma tecnologia assistiva criada para ajudar deficientes visuais a perceberem aspectos visuais de seu ambiente através do tato e contribuir para sua inclusão social. Para melhor entender o processo de aprendizagem dessa tecnologia, quatro participantes cegos foram treinados com o Brainport®, a última versão do TVSS, onde imagens visuais transformadas são exploradas pela língua. O artigo objetiva de investigar o estágio inicial desse processo de aprendizagem, em termos tanto do desempenho dos participantes quanto da qualidade de sua experiência. O treinamento, conduzido de acordo com um método clínico-pedagógico, produziu dados em terceira pessoa e em primeira pessoa. Os dados foram obtidos através de registros de desempenho e de entrevistas de explicitação. Os resultados mostram que as maiores dificuldades surgidas foram relativas ao acoplamento sensório-motor, aos movimentos do corpo e da cabeça e à dissonância entre as expectativas e a qualidade da experiência perceptiva.The tactile-vision-substitution-system (TVSS is an assistive technology designed to aid the visually impaired in perceiving visual aspects of their environment located beyond touch. In order to better understand the learning process of that assistive aid, we trained four blind participants with the Brainport®, the last version of the TVSS, where the transformed visual images are explored by the tongue. More specifically, this article aims to investigate the initial stage of this learning process, in terms both of participants' performance and their qualitative experience. The training, conducted according to the clinical-pedagogic method, produced data both from the first-person and the third-person point of view. Data were gathered through records of participants' performance and explanation interviews. Results show that the main difficulties arising during the process concerned sensory-motor coupling

  20. Blind Braille readers mislocate tactile stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sterr, Annette; Green, Lisa; Elbert, Thomas

    2003-05-01

    In a previous experiment, we observed that blind Braille readers produce errors when asked to identify on which finger of one hand a light tactile stimulus had occurred. With the present study, we aimed to specify the characteristics of this perceptual error in blind and sighted participants. The experiment confirmed that blind Braille readers mislocalised tactile stimuli more often than sighted controls, and that the localisation errors occurred significantly more often at the right reading hand than at the non-reading hand. Most importantly, we discovered that the reading fingers showed the smallest error frequency, but the highest rate of stimulus attribution. The dissociation of perceiving and locating tactile stimuli in the blind suggests altered tactile information processing. Neuroplasticity, changes in tactile attention mechanisms as well as the idea that blind persons may employ different strategies for tactile exploration and object localisation are discussed as possible explanations for the results obtained.

  1. Visuotactile motion congruence enhances gamma-band activity in visual and somatosensory cortices.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krebber, Martin; Harwood, James; Spitzer, Bernhard; Keil, Julian; Senkowski, Daniel

    2015-08-15

    When touching and viewing a moving surface our visual and somatosensory systems receive congruent spatiotemporal input. Behavioral studies have shown that motion congruence facilitates interplay between visual and tactile stimuli, but the neural mechanisms underlying this interplay are not well understood. Neural oscillations play a role in motion processing and multisensory integration. They may also be crucial for visuotactile motion processing. In this electroencephalography study, we applied linear beamforming to examine the impact of visuotactile motion congruence on beta and gamma band activity (GBA) in visual and somatosensory cortices. Visual and tactile inputs comprised of gratings that moved either in the same or different directions. Participants performed a target detection task that was unrelated to motion congruence. While there were no effects in the beta band (13-21Hz), the power of GBA (50-80Hz) in visual and somatosensory cortices was larger for congruent compared with incongruent motion stimuli. This suggests enhanced bottom-up multisensory processing when visual and tactile gratings moved in the same direction. Supporting its behavioral relevance, GBA was correlated with shorter reaction times in the target detection task. We conclude that motion congruence plays an important role for the integrative processing of visuotactile stimuli in sensory cortices, as reflected by oscillatory responses in the gamma band. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. When Seeing Doesn't Matter: Assessing the After-Effects of Tactile Distractor Processing in the Blind and the Sighted

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frings, Christian; Amendt, Anna; Spence, Charles

    2011-01-01

    Negative priming (NP) refers to the finding that people's responses to probe targets previously presented as prime distractors are usually slower than to unrepeated stimuli. Intriguingly, the effect sizes of tactile NP were much larger than the effect sizes for visual NP. We analyzed whether the large tactile NP effect is just a side effect of the…

  3. Short-term memory for spatial configurations in the tactile modality: a comparison with vision.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Picard, Delphine; Monnier, Catherine

    2009-11-01

    This study investigates the role of acquisition constraints on the short-term retention of spatial configurations in the tactile modality in comparison with vision. It tests whether the sequential processing of information inherent to the tactile modality could account for limitation in short-term memory span for tactual-spatial information. In addition, this study investigates developmental aspects of short-term memory for tactual- and visual-spatial configurations. A total of 144 child and adult participants were assessed for their memory span in three different conditions: tactual, visual, and visual with a limited field of view. The results showed lower tactual-spatial memory span than visual-spatial, regardless of age. However, differences in memory span observed between the tactile and visual modalities vanished when the visual processing of information occurred within a limited field. These results provide evidence for an impact of acquisition constraints on the retention of spatial information in the tactile modality in both childhood and adulthood.

  4. Perceptual Discrimination of Basic Object Features Is Not Facilitated When Priming Stimuli Are Prevented From Reaching Awareness by Means of Visual Masking

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peel, Hayden J.; Sperandio, Irene; Laycock, Robin; Chouinard, Philippe A.

    2018-01-01

    Our understanding of how form, orientation and size are processed within and outside of awareness is limited and requires further investigation. Therefore, we investigated whether or not the visual discrimination of basic object features can be influenced by subliminal processing of stimuli presented beforehand. Visual masking was used to render stimuli perceptually invisible. Three experiments examined if visible and invisible primes could facilitate the subsequent feature discrimination of visible targets. The experiments differed in the kind of perceptual discrimination that participants had to make. Namely, participants were asked to discriminate visual stimuli on the basis of their form, orientation, or size. In all three experiments, we demonstrated reliable priming effects when the primes were visible but not when the primes were made invisible. Our findings underscore the importance of conscious awareness in facilitating the perceptual discrimination of basic object features. PMID:29725292

  5. Perceptual Discrimination of Basic Object Features Is Not Facilitated When Priming Stimuli Are Prevented From Reaching Awareness by Means of Visual Masking.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peel, Hayden J; Sperandio, Irene; Laycock, Robin; Chouinard, Philippe A

    2018-01-01

    Our understanding of how form, orientation and size are processed within and outside of awareness is limited and requires further investigation. Therefore, we investigated whether or not the visual discrimination of basic object features can be influenced by subliminal processing of stimuli presented beforehand. Visual masking was used to render stimuli perceptually invisible. Three experiments examined if visible and invisible primes could facilitate the subsequent feature discrimination of visible targets. The experiments differed in the kind of perceptual discrimination that participants had to make. Namely, participants were asked to discriminate visual stimuli on the basis of their form, orientation, or size. In all three experiments, we demonstrated reliable priming effects when the primes were visible but not when the primes were made invisible. Our findings underscore the importance of conscious awareness in facilitating the perceptual discrimination of basic object features.

  6. Vision affects tactile target and distractor processing even when space is task-irrelevant

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ann-Katrin eWesslein

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available The human brain is adapted to integrate the information from multiple sensory modalities into coherent, robust representations of the objects and events in the external world. A large body of empirical research has demonstrated the ubiquitous nature of the interactions that take place between vision and touch, with the former typically dominating over the latter. Many studies have investigated the influence of visual stimuli on the processing of tactile stimuli (and vice versa. Other studies, meanwhile, have investigated the effect of directing a participant’s gaze either toward or else away from the body-part receiving the target tactile stimulation. Other studies, by contrast, have compared performance in those conditions in which the participant’s eyes have been open versus closed. We start by reviewing the research that has been published to date demonstrating the influence of vision on the processing of tactile targets, that is, on those stimuli that have to be attended or responded to. We outline that many – but not all – of the visuotactile interactions that have been observed to date may be attributable to the direction of spatial attention. We then move on to focus on the crossmodal influence of vision, as well as of the direction of gaze, on the processing of tactile distractors. We highlight the results of those studies demonstrating the influence of vision, rather than gaze direction (i.e., the direction of overt spatial attention, on tactile distractor processing (e.g., tactile variants of the negative-priming or flanker task. The conclusion is that no matter how vision of a tactile distractor is engaged, the result would appear to be the same, namely that tactile distractors are processed more thoroughly.

  7. The Design of Tactile Thematic Symbols

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lawrence, Megan M.; Lobben, Amy K.

    2011-01-01

    The study reported here investigated the design and legibility of tactile thematic maps, focusing on symbolization and the comprehension of spatial patterns on the maps. The results indicate that discriminable and effective tactile thematic maps can be produced using classed data with a microcapsule paper production method. The participants…

  8. Preferential processing of tactile events under conditions of divided attention: Effects of divided attention on reaction time

    OpenAIRE

    Hanson, James V. M.; Whitaker, David; Heron, James

    2009-01-01

    Differences in transduction and transmission latencies of visual, auditory and tactile events cause corresponding differences in simple reaction time. As reaction time is usually measured in unimodal blocks, it is unclear whether such latency differences also apply when observers monitor multiple sensory channels. We investigate this by comparing reaction time when attention is focussed on a single modality, and when attention is divided between multiple modalities. Results show that tactile ...

  9. TACTILE SENSING FOR OBJECT IDENTIFICATION

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Drimus, Alin; Marian, Nicolae; Bilberg, Arne

    2009-01-01

    The artificial sense of touch is a research area that can be considered still in demand, compared with the human dexterity of grasping a wide variety of shapes and sizes, perform complex tasks, and switch between grasps in response to changing task requirements. For handling unknown objects...... in unstructured environments, tactile sensing can provide more than valuable to complementary vision information about mechanical properties such as recognition and characterization, force, pressure, torque, compliance, friction, and mass as well as object shape, texture, position and pose. In this paper, we...

  10. Vertically stacked nanocellulose tactile sensor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jung, Minhyun; Kim, Kyungkwan; Kim, Bumjin; Lee, Kwang-Jae; Kang, Jae-Wook; Jeon, Sanghun

    2017-11-16

    Paper-based electronic devices are attracting considerable attention, because the paper platform has unique attributes such as flexibility and eco-friendliness. Here we report on what is claimed to be the firstly fully integrated vertically-stacked nanocellulose-based tactile sensor, which is capable of simultaneously sensing temperature and pressure. The pressure and temperature sensors are operated using different principles and are stacked vertically, thereby minimizing the interference effect. For the pressure sensor, which utilizes the piezoresistance principle under pressure, the conducting electrode was inkjet printed on the TEMPO-oxidized-nanocellulose patterned with micro-sized pyramids, and the counter electrode was placed on the nanocellulose film. The pressure sensor has a high sensitivity over a wide range (500 Pa-3 kPa) and a high durability of 10 4 loading/unloading cycles. The temperature sensor combines various materials such as poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene)-poly(styrenesulfonate) (PEDOT:PSS), silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) and carbon nanotubes (CNTs) to form a thermocouple on the upper nanocellulose layer. The thermoelectric-based temperature sensors generate a thermoelectric voltage output of 1.7 mV for a temperature difference of 125 K. Our 5 × 5 tactile sensor arrays show a fast response, negligible interference, and durable sensing performance.

  11. Tactile pavement for guiding walking direction: An assessment of heading direction and gait stability.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pluyter, N.; de Wit, L.P.; Bruijn, S.M.; Plaisier, M.A.

    2015-01-01

    For maintaining heading direction while walking we heavily rely on vision. Therefore, walking in the absence of vision or with visual attention directed elsewhere potentially leads to dangerous situations. Here we investigated whether tactile information from the feet can be used as a (partial)

  12. Tactile Stimulation of the Face and the Production of Facial Expressions Activate Neurons in the Primate Amygdala.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mosher, Clayton P; Zimmerman, Prisca E; Fuglevand, Andrew J; Gothard, Katalin M

    2016-01-01

    The majority of neurophysiological studies that have explored the role of the primate amygdala in the evaluation of social signals have relied on visual stimuli such as images of facial expressions. Vision, however, is not the only sensory modality that carries social signals. Both humans and nonhuman primates exchange emotionally meaningful social signals through touch. Indeed, social grooming in nonhuman primates and caressing touch in humans is critical for building lasting and reassuring social bonds. To determine the role of the amygdala in processing touch, we recorded the responses of single neurons in the macaque amygdala while we applied tactile stimuli to the face. We found that one-third of the recorded neurons responded to tactile stimulation. Although we recorded exclusively from the right amygdala, the receptive fields of 98% of the neurons were bilateral. A fraction of these tactile neurons were monitored during the production of facial expressions and during facial movements elicited occasionally by touch stimuli. Firing rates arising during the production of facial expressions were similar to those elicited by tactile stimulation. In a subset of cells, combining tactile stimulation with facial movement further augmented the firing rates. This suggests that tactile neurons in the amygdala receive input from skin mechanoceptors that are activated by touch and by compressions and stretches of the facial skin during the contraction of the underlying muscles. Tactile neurons in the amygdala may play a role in extracting the valence of touch stimuli and/or monitoring the facial expressions of self during social interactions.

  13. Bayesian Alternation During Tactile Augmentation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Caspar Mathias Goeke

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available A large number of studies suggest that the integration of multisensory signals by humans is well described by Bayesian principles. However, there are very few reports about cue combination between a native and an augmented sense. In particular, we asked the question whether adult participants are able to integrate an augmented sensory cue with existing native sensory information. Hence for the purpose of this study we build a tactile augmentation device. Consequently, we compared different hypotheses of how untrained adult participants combine information from a native and an augmented sense. In a two-interval forced choice (2 IFC task, while subjects were blindfolded and seated on a rotating platform, our sensory augmentation device translated information on whole body yaw rotation to tactile stimulation. Three conditions were realized: tactile stimulation only (augmented condition, rotation only (native condition, and both augmented and native information (bimodal condition. Participants had to choose one out of two consecutive rotations with higher angular rotation. For the analysis, we fitted the participants’ responses with a probit model and calculated the just notable difference (JND. Then we compared several models for predicting bimodal from unimodal responses. An objective Bayesian alternation model yielded a better prediction (χred2 = 1.67 than the Bayesian integration model (χred2= 4.34. Slightly higher accuracy showed a non-Bayesian winner takes all model (χred2= 1.64, which either used only native or only augmented values per subject for prediction. However the performance of the Bayesian alternation model could be substantially improved (χred2= 1.09 utilizing subjective weights obtained by a questionnaire. As a result, the subjective Bayesian alternation model predicted bimodal performance most accurately among all tested models. These results suggest that information from augmented and existing sensory modalities in

  14. Novel Tactile Sensor Technology and Smart Tactile Sensing Systems: A Review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zou, Liang; Ge, Chang; Wang, Z Jane; Cretu, Edmond; Li, Xiaoou

    2017-11-17

    During the last decades, smart tactile sensing systems based on different sensing techniques have been developed due to their high potential in industry and biomedical engineering. However, smart tactile sensing technologies and systems are still in their infancy, as many technological and system issues remain unresolved and require strong interdisciplinary efforts to address them. This paper provides an overview of smart tactile sensing systems, with a focus on signal processing technologies used to interpret the measured information from tactile sensors and/or sensors for other sensory modalities. The tactile sensing transduction and principles, fabrication and structures are also discussed with their merits and demerits. Finally, the challenges that tactile sensing technology needs to overcome are highlighted.

  15. Novel Tactile Sensor Technology and Smart Tactile Sensing Systems: A Review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liang Zou

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available During the last decades, smart tactile sensing systems based on different sensing techniques have been developed due to their high potential in industry and biomedical engineering. However, smart tactile sensing technologies and systems are still in their infancy, as many technological and system issues remain unresolved and require strong interdisciplinary efforts to address them. This paper provides an overview of smart tactile sensing systems, with a focus on signal processing technologies used to interpret the measured information from tactile sensors and/or sensors for other sensory modalities. The tactile sensing transduction and principles, fabrication and structures are also discussed with their merits and demerits. Finally, the challenges that tactile sensing technology needs to overcome are highlighted.

  16. Spatial Asynchronous Visuo-Tactile Stimuli influence Ownership of Virtual Wings

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andreasen, Anastassia; Nilsson, Niels Chr.; Serafin, Stefania

    2018-01-01

    This poster describes a within-subject study of the virtual body ownership (VBO) illusion using anatomically similar but morphologically different body of a virtual bat. Participants experienced visuo-tactile stimulation of their arms while seeing an object touching the wing of the bat. The mapping...... between the real and the virtual touch points varied across three conditions: no spatial deviation between visual and tactile input, 50% deviation, and 70% deviation. The results suggest that the degree of experienced VBO varies across the conditions. The illusion was broken in the absence of visuo...

  17. Tactile and non-tactile sensory paradigms for fMRI and neurophysiologic studies in rodents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanganahalli, Basavaraju G; Bailey, Christopher J; Herman, Peter; Hyder, Fahmeed

    2009-01-01

    Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) has become a popular functional imaging tool for human studies. Future diagnostic use of fMRI depends, however, on a suitable neurophysiologic interpretation of the blood oxygenation level dependent (BOLD) signal change. This particular goal is best achieved in animal models primarily due to the invasive nature of other methods used and/or pharmacological agents applied to probe different nuances of neuronal (and glial) activity coupled to the BOLD signal change. In the last decade, we have directed our efforts towards the development of stimulation protocols for a variety of modalities in rodents with fMRI. Cortical perception of the natural world relies on the formation of multi-dimensional representation of stimuli impinging on the different sensory systems, leading to the hypothesis that a sensory stimulus may have very different neurophysiologic outcome(s) when paired with a near simultaneous event in another modality. Before approaching this level of complexity, reliable measures must be obtained of the relatively small changes in the BOLD signal and other neurophysiologic markers (electrical activity, blood flow) induced by different peripheral stimuli. Here we describe different tactile (i.e., forepaw, whisker) and non-tactile (i.e., olfactory, visual) sensory paradigms applied to the anesthetized rat. The main focus is on development and validation of methods for reproducible stimulation of each sensory modality applied independently or in conjunction with one another, both inside and outside the magnet. We discuss similarities and/or differences across the sensory systems as well as advantages they may have for studying essential neuroscientific questions. We envisage that the different sensory paradigms described here may be applied directly to studies of multi-sensory interactions in anesthetized rats, en route to a rudimentary understanding of the awake functioning brain where various sensory cues presumably

  18. Development of flexible array tactile sensors

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Drimus, Alin; Marian, Nicolae; Bilberg, Arne

    2010-01-01

    time data acquisition system scans all the cells and converts electrical resistance to tactile pressure maps. We validate that this information can be used to improve grasping and perform object recognition. Key words: piezoresistivity, tactile, sensor, pressure, robotics......In this paper we describe the development of an array tactile sensor for use in robotic grippers based on a flexible piezoresistive material. We start by comparing different cell structures in terms of output characteristics and we construct an array of cells in a row and columns layout. A real...

  19. Bouba/Kiki in Touch: Associations Between Tactile Perceptual Qualities and Japanese Phonemes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maki Sakamoto

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Several studies have shown cross-modal associations between sounds and vision or gustation by asking participants to match pre-defined sound-symbolic words (SSWs, such as “bouba” or “kiki,” with visual or gustatory materials. Here, we conducted an explorative study on cross-modal associations of tactile sensations using spontaneous production of Japanese SSWs and semantic ratings. The Japanese language was selected, because it has a large number of SSWs that can represent a wide range of tactile perceptual spaces with fine resolution, and it shows strong associations between sound and touch. In the experiment, we used 120 everyday materials to cover basic material categories that could be associated with fundamental dimensions of tactile perception. Upon contact with these materials, participants expressed their tactile sensations by using Japanese SSWs, and at the same time, evaluated the tactile sensations by semantic differential scales using adjective pairs. Thanks to the variety of testing materials, we were able to demonstrate the existence of systematic associations between sounds and tactile fundamental perceptual dimensions in a more detailed and comprehensive way than ever done so before. In particular, we found that for vowels, positive tactile ratings were associated with the back vowel (/u/, while negative ratings were associated with the front vowels (/i/ and /e/. The central vowels (/o/ and /a/ were mainly associated with rough, hard, and dry feelings. Consonants were categorized based on vocal features and articulation. The category of the voiced consonants (e.g., /dz/ and /g/ corresponded to feelings of roughness, while that of voiceless consonants (e.g., /ʦ/, and /s/ corresponded to feelings of smoothness. The categories of the bilabial plosive (/p/ and /b/ and voiced alveolar nasal (/n/ consonants were mainly related to soft, sticky and wet feelings, while that of voiceless alveolar affricate (/ʦ/ and voiceless velar

  20. Cassini Scientist for a Day: a tactile experience

    Science.gov (United States)

    Canas, L.; Altobelli, N.

    2012-09-01

    In September 2011, the Cassini spacecraft took images of three targets and a challenge was launched to all students: to choose the one target they thought would provide the best science and to write an essay explaining their reasons (more information on the "Cassini Scientist for a Day" essay contest official webpage in: http://saturn.jpl.nasa.gov/education/scientistforaday10thedition/, run by NASA/JPL) The three targets presented were: Hyperion, Rhea and Titan, and Saturn. The idea behind "Cassini Scientist for a Day: a tactile experience" was to transform each of these images into schematic tactile images, highlighting relevant features apprehended through a tactile key, accompanied by a small text in Braille with some additional information. This initial approach would allow reach a broader community of students, more specifically those with visual impairment disabilities. Through proper implementation and careful study cases the adapted images associated with an explanatory key provide more resources in tactile astronomy. As the 2012 edition approaches a new set of targeted objet images will be once again transformed and adapted to visually impaired students and will aim to reach more students into participate in this international competition and to engage them in a quest to expand their knowledge in the amazing Cassini discoveries and the wonders of Saturn and its moons. As the winning essays will be published on the Cassini website and contest winners invited to participate in a dedicated teleconference with Cassini scientists from NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, this initiative presents a great chance to all visually impaired students and teachers to participate in an exciting experience. These initiatives must be complemented with further information to strengthen the learning experience. However they stand as a good starting point to tackle further astronomical concepts in the classroom, especially this field that sometimes lacks the resources. Although

  1. The Invisible Universe: A Tactile and Braille Exhibit of Astronomical Images

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arcand, Kimberly; Lestition, K.; Watzke, M.; Steel, S.

    2010-01-01

    As part of the "From Earth to the Universe" (FETTU) project, a NASA-funded tactile exhibit for the visually impaired community was launched in July 2009 at the Martin Luther King Library in D.C. The exhibit is part of the global FETTU exhibit, a project of the International Year of Astronomy 2009. The science content of the exhibit includes explanations of our Sun, Eta Carinae, Crab Nebula, Whirlpool Galaxy, and the electromagnetic spectrum, and was adapted from the NASA-funded Braille/tactile book Touch the Invisible Sky. Multiple geographic locations and venue types have been targeted for the displays. The FETTU-tactile exhibit opens a wider door to experiencing and understanding astronomy, bridging a gap in learning. This exhibit is based upon work supported by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration under proposal 08-EPO08-0068 issued through the Science Mission Directorate.

  2. Prefrontal cortex and somatosensory cortex in tactile crossmodal association: an independent component analysis of ERP recordings.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yixuan Ku

    2007-08-01

    Full Text Available Our previous studies on scalp-recorded event-related potentials (ERPs showed that somatosensory N140 evoked by a tactile vibration in working memory tasks was enhanced when human subjects expected a coming visual stimulus that had been paired with the tactile stimulus. The results suggested that such enhancement represented the cortical activities involved in tactile-visual crossmodal association. In the present study, we further hypothesized that the enhancement represented the neural activities in somatosensory and frontal cortices in the crossmodal association. By applying independent component analysis (ICA to the ERP data, we found independent components (ICs located in the medial prefrontal cortex (around the anterior cingulate cortex, ACC and the primary somatosensory cortex (SI. The activity represented by the IC in SI cortex showed enhancement in expectation of the visual stimulus. Such differential activity thus suggested the participation of SI cortex in the task-related crossmodal association. Further, the coherence analysis and the Granger causality spectral analysis of the ICs showed that SI cortex appeared to cooperate with ACC in attention and perception of the tactile stimulus in crossmodal association. The results of our study support with new evidence an important idea in cortical neurophysiology: higher cognitive operations develop from the modality-specific sensory cortices (in the present study, SI cortex that are involved in sensation and perception of various stimuli.

  3. Attending to and remembering tactile stimuli: a review of brain imaging data and single-neuron responses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burton, H; Sinclair, R J

    2000-11-01

    Clinical and neuroimaging observations of the cortical network implicated in tactile attention have identified foci in parietal somatosensory, posterior parietal, and superior frontal locations. Tasks involving intentional hand-arm movements activate similar or nearby parietal and frontal foci. Visual spatial attention tasks and deliberate visuomotor behavior also activate overlapping posterior parietal and frontal foci. Studies in the visual and somatosensory systems thus support a proposal that attention to the spatial location of an object engages cortical regions responsible for the same coordinate referents used for guiding purposeful motor behavior. Tactile attention also biases processing in the somatosensory cortex through amplification of responses to relevant features of selected stimuli. Psychophysical studies demonstrate retention gradients for tactile stimuli like those reported for visual and auditory stimuli, and suggest analogous neural mechanisms for working memory across modalities. Neuroimaging studies in humans using memory tasks, and anatomic studies in monkeys support the idea that tactile information relayed from the somatosensory cortex is directed ventrally through the insula to the frontal cortex for short-term retention and to structures of the medial temporal lobe for long-term encoding. At the level of single neurons, tactile (such as visual and auditory) short-term memory appears as a persistent response during delay intervals between sampled stimuli.

  4. Tactile spatial working memory activates the dorsal extrastriate cortical pathway in congenitally blind individuals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonino, D; Ricciardi, E; Sani, L; Gentili, C; Vanello, N; Guazzelli, M; Vecchi, T; Pietrini, P

    2008-09-01

    In sighted individuals, both the visual and tactile version of the same spatial working memory task elicited neural responses in the dorsal "where" cortical pathway (Ricciardi et al., 2006). Whether the neural response during the tactile working memory task is due to visually-based spatial imagery or rather reflects a more abstract, supramodal organization of the dorsal cortical pathway remains to be determined. To understand the role of visual experience on the functional organization of the dorsal cortical stream, using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) here we examined brain response in four individuals with congenital or early blindness and no visual recollection, while they performed the same tactile spatial working memory task, a one-back recognition of 2D and 3D matrices. The blind subjects showed a significant activation in bilateral posterior parietal cortex, dorsolateral and inferior prefrontal areas, precuneus, lateral occipital cortex, and cerebellum. Thus, dorsal occipito-parietal areas are involved in mental imagery dealing with spatial components in subjects without prior visual experience and in response to a non-visual task. These data indicate that recruitment of the dorsal cortical pathway in response to the tactile spatial working memory task is not mediated by visually-based imagery and that visual experience is not a prerequisite for the development of a more abstract functional organization of the dorsal stream. These findings, along with previous data indicating a similar supramodal functional organization within the ventral cortical pathway and the motion processing brain regions, may contribute to explain how individuals who are born deprived of sight are able to interact effectively with the surrounding world.

  5. Tactile Data Entry System, Phase II

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Building on our successful Phase I Tactile Data Entry program, Barron Associates proposes development of a Glove-Enabled Computer Operations (GECO) system to permit...

  6. Generalization of a tactile stimulus in horses.

    OpenAIRE

    Dougherty, D M; Lewis, P

    1993-01-01

    Using horses, we investigated the control of operant behavior by a tactile stimulus (the training stimulus) and the generalization of behavior to six other similar test stimuli. In a stall, the experimenters mounted a response panel in the doorway. Located on this panel were a response lever and a grain dispenser. The experimenters secured a tactile-stimulus belt to the horse's back. The stimulus belt was constructed by mounting seven solenoids along a piece of burlap in a manner that allowed...

  7. Pure associative tactile agnosia for the left hand: clinical and anatomo-functional correlations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Veronelli, Laura; Ginex, Valeria; Dinacci, Daria; Cappa, Stefano F; Corbo, Massimo

    2014-09-01

    Associative tactile agnosia (TA) is defined as the inability to associate information about object sensory properties derived through tactile modality with previously acquired knowledge about object identity. The impairment is often described after a lesion involving the parietal cortex (Caselli, 1997; Platz, 1996). We report the case of SA, a right-handed 61-year-old man affected by first ever right hemispheric hemorrhagic stroke. The neurological examination was normal, excluding major somaesthetic and motor impairment; a brain magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) confirmed the presence of a right subacute hemorrhagic lesion limited to the post-central and supra-marginal gyri. A comprehensive neuropsychological evaluation detected a selective inability to name objects when handled with the left hand in the absence of other cognitive deficits. A series of experiments were conducted in order to assess each stage of tactile recognition processing using the same stimulus sets: materials, 3D geometrical shapes, real objects and letters. SA and seven matched controls underwent the same experimental tasks during four sessions in consecutive days. Tactile discrimination, recognition, pantomime, drawing after haptic exploration out of vision and tactile-visual matching abilities were assessed. In addition, we looked for the presence of a supra-modal impairment of spatial perception and of specific difficulties in programming exploratory movements during recognition. Tactile discrimination was intact for all the stimuli tested. In contrast, SA was able neither to recognize nor to pantomime real objects manipulated with the left hand out of vision, while he identified them with the right hand without hesitations. Tactile-visual matching was intact. Furthermore, SA was able to grossly reproduce the global shape in drawings but failed to extract details of objects after left-hand manipulation, and he could not identify objects after looking at his own drawings. This case

  8. Touch sensitive electrorheological fluid based tactile display

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Yanju; Davidson, Rob; Taylor, Paul

    2005-12-01

    A tactile display is programmable device whose controlled surface is intended to be investigated by human touch. It has a great number of potential applications in the field of virtual reality and elsewhere. In this research, a 5 × 5 tactile display array including electrorheological (ER) fluid has been developed and investigated. Force responses of the tactile display array have been measured while a probe was moved across the upper surface. The purpose of this was to simulate the action of touch performed by human finger. Experimental results show that the sensed surface information could be controlled effectively by adjusting the voltage activation pattern imposed on the tactels. The performance of the tactile display is durable and repeatable. The touch sensitivity of this ER fluid based tactile display array has also been investigated in this research. The results show that it is possible to sense the touching force normal to the display's surface by monitoring the change of current passing through the ER fluid. These encouraging results are helpful for constructing a new type of tactile display based on ER fluid which can act as both sensor and actuator at the same time.

  9. Does Sleep Facilitate the Consolidation of Allocentric or Egocentric Representations of Implicitly Learned Visual-Motor Sequence Learning?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Viczko, Jeremy; Sergeeva, Valya; Ray, Laura B.; Owen, Adrian M.; Fogel, Stuart M.

    2018-01-01

    Sleep facilitates the consolidation (i.e., enhancement) of simple, explicit (i.e., conscious) motor sequence learning (MSL). MSL can be dissociated into egocentric (i.e., motor) or allocentric (i.e., spatial) frames of reference. The consolidation of the allocentric memory representation is sleep-dependent, whereas the egocentric consolidation…

  10. Harnessing Visual Media in Environmental Education: Increasing Knowledge of Orangutan Conservation Issues and Facilitating Sustainable Behaviour through Video Presentations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pearson, Elissa; Dorrian, Jillian; Litchfield, Carla

    2011-01-01

    Many animals are currently facing extinction. Conservation education which highlights the impacts of our behaviour on other species survival is crucial. This study provides evidence for the use of visual media to increase knowledge, attitudes and conservation behaviours regarding the highly endangered orangutan. University students (n = 126) were…

  11. Effects of Static Visuals and Computer-Generated Animations in Facilitating Immediate and Delayed Achievement in the EFL Classroom

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Huifen; Chen, Tsuiping; Dwyer, Francis M.

    2006-01-01

    The purpose of this experimental study was to compare the effects of using static visuals versus computer-generated animation to enhance learners' comprehension and retention of a content-based lesson in a computer-based learning environment for learning English as a foreign language (EFL). Fifty-eight students from two EFL reading sections were…

  12. The Role of Long-Term Memory in a Test of Visual Working Memory: Proactive Facilitation but No Proactive Interference

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oberauer, Klaus; Awh, Edward; Sutterer, David W.

    2017-01-01

    We report 4 experiments examining whether associations in visual working memory are subject to proactive interference from long-term memory (LTM). Following a long-term learning phase in which participants learned the colors of 120 unique objects, a working memory (WM) test was administered in which participants recalled the precise colors of 3…

  13. Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) facilitates overall visual search response times but does not interact with visual search task factors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sung, Kyongje; Gordon, Barry

    2018-01-01

    Whether transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) affects mental functions, and how any such effects arise from its neural effects, continue to be debated. We investigated whether tDCS applied over the visual cortex (Oz) with a vertex (Cz) reference might affect response times (RTs) in a visual search task. We also examined whether any significant tDCS effects would interact with task factors (target presence, discrimination difficulty, and stimulus brightness) that are known to selectively influence one or the other of the two information processing stages posited by current models of visual search. Based on additive factor logic, we expected that the pattern of interactions involving a significant tDCS effect could help us colocalize the tDCS effect to one (or both) of the processing stages. In Experiment 1 (n = 12), anodal tDCS improved RTs significantly; cathodal tDCS produced a nonsignificant trend toward improvement. However, there were no interactions between the anodal tDCS effect and target presence or discrimination difficulty. In Experiment 2 (n = 18), we manipulated stimulus brightness along with target presence and discrimination difficulty. Anodal and cathodal tDCS both produced significant improvements in RTs. Again, the tDCS effects did not interact with any of the task factors. In Experiment 3 (n = 16), electrodes were placed at Cz and on the upper arm, to test for a possible effect of incidental stimulation of the motor regions under Cz. No effect of tDCS on RTs was found. These findings strengthen the case for tDCS having real effects on cerebral information processing. However, these effects did not clearly arise from either of the two processing stages of the visual search process. We suggest that this is because tDCS has a DIFFUSE, pervasive action across the task-relevant neuroanatomical region(s), not a discrete effect in terms of information processing stages.

  14. Tactile Evaluation Feedback System for Multi-Layered Structure Inspired by Human Tactile Perception Mechanism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Iza Husna Mohamad Hashim

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Tactile sensation is one type of valuable feedback in evaluating a product. Conventionally, sensory evaluation is used to get direct subjective responses from the consumers, in order to improve the product’s quality. However, this method is a time-consuming and costly process. Therefore, this paper proposes a novel tactile evaluation system that can give tactile feedback from a sensor’s output. The main concept of this system is hierarchically layering the tactile sensation, which is inspired by the flow of human perception. The tactile sensation is classified from low-order of tactile sensation (LTS to high-order of tactile sensation (HTS, and also to preference. Here, LTS will be correlated with physical measures. Furthermore, the physical measures that are used to correlate with LTS are selected based on four main aspects of haptic information (roughness, compliance, coldness, and slipperiness, which are perceived through human tactile sensors. By using statistical analysis, the correlation between each hierarchy was obtained, and the preference was derived in terms of physical measures. A verification test was conducted by using unknown samples to determine the reliability of the system. The results showed that the system developed was capable of estimating preference with an accuracy of approximately 80%.

  15. Tactile Evaluation Feedback System for Multi-Layered Structure Inspired by Human Tactile Perception Mechanism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hashim, Iza Husna Mohamad; Kumamoto, Shogo; Takemura, Kenjiro; Maeno, Takashi; Okuda, Shin; Mori, Yukio

    2017-11-11

    Tactile sensation is one type of valuable feedback in evaluating a product. Conventionally, sensory evaluation is used to get direct subjective responses from the consumers, in order to improve the product's quality. However, this method is a time-consuming and costly process. Therefore, this paper proposes a novel tactile evaluation system that can give tactile feedback from a sensor's output. The main concept of this system is hierarchically layering the tactile sensation, which is inspired by the flow of human perception. The tactile sensation is classified from low-order of tactile sensation (LTS) to high-order of tactile sensation (HTS), and also to preference. Here, LTS will be correlated with physical measures. Furthermore, the physical measures that are used to correlate with LTS are selected based on four main aspects of haptic information (roughness, compliance, coldness, and slipperiness), which are perceived through human tactile sensors. By using statistical analysis, the correlation between each hierarchy was obtained, and the preference was derived in terms of physical measures. A verification test was conducted by using unknown samples to determine the reliability of the system. The results showed that the system developed was capable of estimating preference with an accuracy of approximately 80%.

  16. Differences in Early Stages of Tactile ERP Temporal Sequence (P100) in Cortical Organization during Passive Tactile Stimulation in Children with Blindness and Controls

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ortiz Alonso, Tomás; Santos, Juan Matías; Ortiz Terán, Laura; Borrego Hernández, Mayelin; Poch Broto, Joaquín; de Erausquin, Gabriel Alejandro

    2015-01-01

    Compared to their seeing counterparts, people with blindness have a greater tactile capacity. Differences in the physiology of object recognition between people with blindness and seeing people have been well documented, but not when tactile stimuli require semantic processing. We used a passive vibrotactile device to focus on the differences in spatial brain processing evaluated with event related potentials (ERP) in children with blindness (n = 12) vs. normally seeing children (n = 12), when learning a simple spatial task (lines with different orientations) or a task involving recognition of letters, to describe the early stages of its temporal sequence (from 80 to 220 msec) and to search for evidence of multi-modal cortical organization. We analysed the P100 of the ERP. Children with blindness showed earlier latencies for cognitive (perceptual) event related potentials, shorter reaction times, and (paradoxically) worse ability to identify the spatial direction of the stimulus. On the other hand, they are equally proficient in recognizing stimuli with semantic content (letters). The last observation is consistent with the role of P100 on somatosensory-based recognition of complex forms. The cortical differences between seeing control and blind groups, during spatial tactile discrimination, are associated with activation in visual pathway (occipital) and task-related association (temporal and frontal) areas. The present results show that early processing of tactile stimulation conveying cross modal information differs in children with blindness or with normal vision. PMID:26225827

  17. The effect of perceptual load on tactile spatial attention: Evidence from event-related potentials.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gherri, Elena; Berreby, Fiona

    2017-10-15

    To investigate whether tactile spatial attention is modulated by perceptual load, behavioural and electrophysiological measures were recorded during two spatial cuing tasks in which the difficulty of the target/non-target discrimination was varied (High and Low load tasks). Moreover, to study whether attentional modulations by load are sensitive to the availability of visual information, the High and Low load tasks were carried out under both illuminated and darkness conditions. ERPs to cued and uncued non-targets were compared as a function of task (High vs. Low load) and illumination condition (Light vs. Darkness). Results revealed that the locus of tactile spatial attention was determined by a complex interaction between perceptual load and illumination conditions during sensory-specific stages of processing. In the Darkness, earlier effects of attention were present in the High load than in the Low load task, while no difference between tasks emerged in the Light. By contrast, increased load was associated with stronger attention effects during later post-perceptual processing stages regardless of illumination conditions. These findings demonstrate that ERP correlates of tactile spatial attention are strongly affected by the perceptual load of the target/non-target discrimination. However, differences between illumination conditions show that the impact of load on tactile attention depends on the presence of visual information. Perceptual load is one of the many factors that contribute to determine the effects of spatial selectivity in touch. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. Tactile object familiarity in the blind brain reveals the supramodal perceptual-mnemonic nature of the perirhinal cortex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura eCacciamani

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available This study is the first to investigate the neural underpinnings of tactile object familiarity in the blind during both perception and memory. In the sighted, the perirhinal cortex (PRC has been implicated in the assessment of visual object familiarity—a crucial everyday task—as evidenced by reduced activation when an object becomes familiar. Here, to examine the PRC’s role in tactile object familiarity in the absence of vision, we trained blind subjects on a unique memory-guided drawing technique and measured brain activity while they perceptually explored raised-line drawings, drew them from tactile memory, and scribbled (control. FMRI before and after a week of training revealed a significant decrease in PRC activation from pre- to post-training (i.e., from unfamiliar to familiar during perceptual exploration as well as memory-guided drawing, but not scribbling. This familiarity-based reduction is the first evidence that the PRC represents tactile object familiarity in the blind. Furthermore, the finding of this effect during both tactile perception and tactile memory provides the critical link in establishing the PRC as a structure whose representations are supramodal for both perception and memory.

  19. High-Speed Tactile Sensing for Array-Type Tactile Sensor and Object Manipulation Based on Tactile Information

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wataru Fukui

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available We have developed a universal robot hand with tactile and other sensors. An array-type tactile sensor is crucial for dexterous manipulation of objects using a robotic hand, since this sensor can measure the pressure distribution on finger pads. The sensor has a very high resolution, and the shape of a grasped object can be classified by using this sensor. The more the number of measurement points provided, the higher the accuracy of the classification, but with a corresponding lengthening of the measurement cycle. In this paper, the problem of slow response time is resolved by using software for an array-type tactile sensor with high resolution that emulates the human sensor system. The validity of the proposed method is demonstrated through experiments.

  20. Tactile Working Memory Outside our Hands

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Takako Yoshida

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available The haptic perception of 2D images is believed to make heavy demands on working memory. During active exploration, we need to store not only the current sensory information, but also to integrate this with kinesthetic information of the hand and fingers in order to generate a coherent percept. The question that arises is how much tactile memory we have for tactile stimuli that are no longer in contact with the skin during active touch? We examined working memory using a tactile change detection task with active exploration. Each trial contained two stimulation arrays. Participants engaged in unconstrained active tactile exploration of an array of vibrotactile stimulators. In half of the trials, one of the vibrating tactors that was active in the first stimulation turned off and another started vibrating in the second stimulation. Participants had to report whether the arrays were the same or different. Performance was near-perfect when up to two tactors were used and dropped linearly as the number of the vibrating tactors increased. These results suggest that the tactile working memory off the hand is limited and there is little or no memory integration across hand movements.

  1. Robotic Tactile Sensing Technologies and System

    CERN Document Server

    Dahiya, Ravinder S

    2013-01-01

    Future robots are expected to work closely and interact safely with real-world objects and humans alike. Sense of touch is important in this context, as it helps estimate properties such as shape, texture, hardness, material type and many more; provides action related information, such as slip detection; and helps carrying out actions such as rolling an object between fingers without dropping it. This book presents an in-depth description of the solutions available for gathering tactile data, obtaining aforementioned tactile information from the data and effectively using the same in various robotic tasks. Better integration of tactile sensors on a robot’s body is prerequisite for the effective utilization of tactile data. For this reason, the hardware, software and application related issues (and resulting trade-offs) that must be considered to make tactile sensing an effective component of robotic platforms are discussed in-depth.To this end, human touch sensing has also been explored. The design hints co...

  2. Tactile object exploration using cursor navigation sensors

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kraft, Dirk; Bierbaum, Alexander; Kjaergaard, Morten

    2009-01-01

    In robotic applications tactile sensor systems serve the purpose of localizing a contact point and measuring contact forces. We have investigated the applicability of a sensorial device commonly used in cursor navigation technology for tactile sensing in robotics. We show the potential of this se......In robotic applications tactile sensor systems serve the purpose of localizing a contact point and measuring contact forces. We have investigated the applicability of a sensorial device commonly used in cursor navigation technology for tactile sensing in robotics. We show the potential...... of this sensor for active haptic exploration. More specifically, we present experiments and results which demonstrate the extraction of relevant object properties such as local shape, weight and elasticity using this technology. Besides its low price due to mass production and its modularity, an interesting...... aspect of this sensor is that beside a localization of contact points and measurement of the contact normal force also shear forces can be measured. This is relevant for many applications such as surface normal estimation and weight measurements. Scalable tactile sensor arrays have been developed...

  3. Learning tactile skills through curious exploration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leo ePape

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available We present curiosity-driven, autonomous acquisition of tactile exploratory skills on a biomimetic robot finger equipped with an array of microelectromechanical touch sensors. Instead of building tailored algorithms for solving a specific tactile task, we employ a more general curiosity-driven reinforcement learning approach that autonomously learns a set of motor skills in absence of an explicit teacher signal. In this approach, the acquisition of skills is driven by the information content of the sensory input signals relative to a learner that aims at representing sensory inputs using fewer and fewer computational resources. We show that, from initially random exploration of its environment, the robotic system autonomously develops a small set of basic motor skills that lead to different kinds of tactile input. Next, the system learns how to exploit the learned motor skills to solve supervised texture classification tasks. Our approach demonstrates the feasibility of autonomous acquisition of tactile skills on physical robotic platforms through curiosity-driven reinforcement learning, overcomes typical difficulties of engineered solutions for active tactile exploration and underactuated control, and provides a basis for studying developmental learning through intrinsic motivation in robots.

  4. A new dynamic tactile display for reconfigurable braille: implementation and tests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Motto Ros, Paolo; Dante, Vittorio; Mesin, Luca; Petetti, Erminio; Del Giudice, Paolo; Pasero, Eros

    2014-01-01

    Different tactile interfaces have been proposed to represent either text (braille) or, in a few cases, tactile large-area screens as replacements for visual displays. None of the implementations so far can be customized to match users' preferences, perceptual differences and skills. Optimal choices in these respects are still debated; we approach a solution by designing a flexible device allowing the user to choose key parameters of tactile transduction. We present here a new dynamic tactile display, a 8 × 8 matrix of plastic pins based on well-established and reliable piezoelectric technology to offer high resolution (pin gap 0.7mm) as well as tunable strength of the pins displacement, and refresh rate up to 50s(-1). It can reproduce arbitrary patterns, allowing it to serve the dual purpose of providing, depending on contingent user needs, tactile rendering of non-character information, and reconfigurable braille rendering. Given the relevance of the latter functionality for the expected average user, we considered testing braille encoding by volunteers a benchmark of primary importance. Tests were performed to assess the acceptance and usability with minimal training, and to check whether the offered flexibility was indeed perceived by the subject as an added value compared to conventional braille devices. Different mappings between braille dots and actual tactile pins were implemented to match user needs. Performances of eight experienced braille readers were defined as the fraction of correct identifications of rendered content. Different information contents were tested (median performance on random strings, words, sentences identification was about 75%, 85%, 98%, respectively, with a significant increase, p < 0.01), obtaining statistically significant improvements in performance during the tests (p < 0.05). Experimental results, together with qualitative ratings provided by the subjects, show a good acceptance and the effectiveness of the proposed solution.

  5. A New Dynamic Tactile Display for Reconfigurable Braille: Implementation and Tests

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paolo eMotto Ros

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Different tactile interfaces have been proposed to represent either text (braille or, in a few cases, tactile large-area screens as replacements for visual displays. None of the implementations so far can be customized to match users preferences, perceptual differences and skills. Optimal choices in these respects are still debated; we approach a solution by designing a flexible device allowing the user to choose key parameters of tactile transduction.We present here a new dynamic tactile display, a 8×8 matrix of plastic pins based on well-established and reliable piezoelectric technology to offer high resolution (pin gap 0.7 mm as well as tunable strength of the pins displacement, and refresh rate up to 50 s-1. It can reproduce arbitrary patterns, allowing it to serve the dual purpose of providing, depending on contingent user needs, tactile rendering of non-character information, and reconfigurable braille rendering. Given the relevance of the latter functionality for the expected average user, we considered testing braille encoding by volunteers a benchmark of primary importance. Tests were performed to assess the acceptance and usability with minimal training, and to check whether the offered flexibility was indeed perceived by the subject as an added value compared to conventional braille devices. Different mappings between braille dots and actual tactile pins were implemented to match user needs.Performances of eight experienced braille readers were defined as the fraction of correct identifications of rendered content. Different information contents were tested (median performance on random strings, words, sentences identification was about 75%, 85%, 98%, respectively, with a significant increase, p< 0.01, obtaining statistically significant improvements in performance during the tests (p< 0.05. Experimental results, together with qualitative ratings provided by the subjects, show a good acceptance and the effectiveness of the proposed

  6. The influence of tactile cognitive maps on auditory space perception in sighted persons.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alessia Tonelli

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available We have recently shown that vision is important to improve spatial auditory cognition. In this study we investigate whether touch is as effective as vision to create a cognitive map of a soundscape. In particular we tested whether the creation of a mental representation of a room, obtained through tactile exploration of a 3D model, can influence the perception of a complex auditory task in sighted people. We tested two groups of blindfolded sighted people – one experimental and one control group – in an auditory space bisection task. In the first group the bisection task was performed three times: specifically, the participants explored with their hands the 3D tactile model of the room and were led along the perimeter of the room between the first and the second execution of the space bisection. Then, they were allowed to remove the blindfold for a few minutes and look at the room between the second and third execution of the space bisection. Instead, the control group repeated for two consecutive times the space bisection task without performing any environmental exploration in between. Considering the first execution as a baseline, we found an improvement in the precision after the tactile exploration of the 3D model. Interestingly, no additional gain was obtained when room observation followed the tactile exploration, suggesting that no additional gain was obtained by vision cues after spatial tactile cues were internalized. No improvement was found between the first and the second execution of the space bisection without environmental exploration in the control group, suggesting that the improvement was not due to task learning. Our results show that tactile information modulates the precision of an ongoing space auditory task as well as visual information. This suggests that cognitive maps elicited by touch may participate in cross-modal calibration and supra-modal representations of space that increase implicit knowledge about sound

  7. Visual Storyboarding Provides a Conceptual Bridge from Research to Development: Students Can Imagine the Results of Their Decision Making, and Their Prioritization of the Many Facets of the Design Problem Will Facilitate the Development of a Strong Final Solution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reeder, Kevin

    2005-01-01

    In order to facilitate the selection/prioritization process and bridge the gap of design research to design conceptualization, students need to visualize the big picture that describes how the research categories such as "user," "marketing," "functional/mechanical research" are related. This is achieved through the use of a visual storyboard. The…

  8. Putative inhibitory training of a stimulus makes it a facilitator: a within-subject comparison of visual and auditory stimuli in autoshaping.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakajima, S

    2000-03-14

    Pigeons were trained with the A+, AB-, ABC+, AD- and ADE+ task where each of stimulus A and stimulus compounds ABC and ADE signalled food (positive trials), and each of stimulus compounds AB and AD signalled no food (negative trials). Stimuli A, B, C and E were small visual figures localised on a response key, and stimulus D was a white noise. Stimulus B was more effective than D as an inhibitor of responding to A during the training. After the birds learned to respond exclusively on the positive trials, effects of B and D on responding to C and E, respectively, were tested by comparing C, BC, E and DE trials. Stimulus B continuously facilitated responding to C on the BC test trials, but D's facilitative effect was observed only on the first DE test trial. Stimulus B also facilitated responding to E on BE test trials. Implications for the Rescorla-Wagner elemental model and the Pearce configural model of Pavlovian conditioning were discussed.

  9. Magnetic Tactile Sensor for Braille Reading

    KAUST Repository

    Alfadhel, Ahmed

    2016-04-27

    We report a biomimetic magnetic tactile sensor for Braille characters reading. The sensor consists of magnetic nanocomposite artificial cilia implemented on magnetic micro sensors. The nanocomposite is produced from the highly elastic polydimethylsiloxane and iron nanowires that exhibit a permanent magnetic behavior. This design enables remote operation and does not require an additional magnetic field to magnetize the nanowires. The highly elastic nanocomposite is easy to pattern, corrosion resistant and thermally stable. The tactile sensors can detect vertical and shear forces, which allows recognizing small changes in surface texture, as in the case of Braille dots. The 6 dots of a braille cell are read from top to bottom with a tactile sensor array consisting of 4 elements and 1 mm long nanocomposite cilia.

  10. Development of a Tactile Sensor Array

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Marian, Nicolae; Drimus, Alin; Bilberg, Arne

    2010-01-01

    Flexible grasping robots are needed for enabling automated, profitable and competitive production of small batch sizes including complex handling processes of often fragile objects. This development will create new conditions for value-adding activities in the production of the future world....... The paper describes the related research work we have developed for sensor design, exploration and control for a robot gripping system, in order to analyze normal forces applied on the tactile pixels for gripping force control and generate tactile images for gripping positioning and object recognition....... Section 1 gives an introduction of principles and technologies in tactile sensing for robot grippers. Section 2 presents the sensor cell (taxel) and array design and characterization. Section 3 introduces object recognition and shape analysis ideas showing a few preliminary examples, where geometrical...

  11. Magnetic Tactile Sensor for Braille Reading

    KAUST Repository

    Alfadhel, Ahmed; Khan, Mohammed; Cardoso, Susana; Kosel, Jü rgen

    2016-01-01

    We report a biomimetic magnetic tactile sensor for Braille characters reading. The sensor consists of magnetic nanocomposite artificial cilia implemented on magnetic micro sensors. The nanocomposite is produced from the highly elastic polydimethylsiloxane and iron nanowires that exhibit a permanent magnetic behavior. This design enables remote operation and does not require an additional magnetic field to magnetize the nanowires. The highly elastic nanocomposite is easy to pattern, corrosion resistant and thermally stable. The tactile sensors can detect vertical and shear forces, which allows recognizing small changes in surface texture, as in the case of Braille dots. The 6 dots of a braille cell are read from top to bottom with a tactile sensor array consisting of 4 elements and 1 mm long nanocomposite cilia.

  12. Differential effects of painful and non-painful stimulation on tactile processing in fibromyalgia syndrome and subjects with masochistic behaviour.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bettina Pollok

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: In healthy subjects repeated tactile stimulation in a conditioning test stimulation paradigm yields attenuation of primary (S1 and secondary (S2 somatosensory cortical activation, whereas a preceding painful stimulus results in facilitation. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Since previous data suggest that cognitive processes might affect somatosensory processing in S1, the present study aims at investigating to what extent cortical reactivity is altered by the subjective estimation of pain. To this end, the effect of painful and tactile stimulation on processing of subsequently applied tactile stimuli was investigated in patients with fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS and in subjects with masochistic behaviour (MB by means of a 122-channel whole-head magnetoencephalography (MEG system. Ten patients fulfilling the criteria for the diagnosis of FMS, 10 subjects with MB and 20 control subjects matched with respect to age, gender and handedness participated in the present study. Tactile or brief painful cutaneous laser stimuli were applied as conditioning stimulus (CS followed by a tactile test stimulus (TS 500 ms later. While in FMS patients significant attenuation following conditioning tactile stimulation was evident, no facilitation following painful stimulation was found. By contrast, in subjects with MB no attenuation but significant facilitation occurred. Attenuation as well as facilitation applied to cortical responses occurring at about 70 ms but not to early S1 or S2 responses. Additionally, in FMS patients the amount of attenuation was inversely correlated with catastrophizing tendency. CONCLUSION: The present results imply altered cortical reactivity of the primary somatosensory cortex in FMS patients and MB possibly reflecting differences of individual pain experience.

  13. Context generalization in Drosophila visual learning requires the mushroom bodies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Li; Wolf, Reinhard; Ernst, Roman; Heisenberg, Martin

    1999-08-01

    The world is permanently changing. Laboratory experiments on learning and memory normally minimize this feature of reality, keeping all conditions except the conditioned and unconditioned stimuli as constant as possible. In the real world, however, animals need to extract from the universe of sensory signals the actual predictors of salient events by separating them from non-predictive stimuli (context). In principle, this can be achieved ifonly those sensory inputs that resemble the reinforcer in theirtemporal structure are taken as predictors. Here we study visual learning in the fly Drosophila melanogaster, using a flight simulator,, and show that memory retrieval is, indeed, partially context-independent. Moreover, we show that the mushroom bodies, which are required for olfactory but not visual or tactile learning, effectively support context generalization. In visual learning in Drosophila, it appears that a facilitating effect of context cues for memory retrieval is the default state, whereas making recall context-independent requires additional processing.

  14. Unmyelinated tactile cutaneous nerves signal erotic sensations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jönsson, Emma H; Backlund Wasling, Helena; Wagnbeck, Vicktoria; Dimitriadis, Menelaos; Georgiadis, Janniko R; Olausson, Håkan; Croy, Ilona

    2015-06-01

    Intrapersonal touch is a powerful tool for communicating emotions and can among many things evoke feelings of eroticism and sexual arousal. The peripheral neural mechanisms of erotic touch signaling have been less studied. C tactile afferents (unmyelinated low-threshold mechanoreceptors), known to underpin pleasant aspects of touch processing, have been posited to play an important role. In two studies, we investigated the relationship between C tactile activation and the perception of erotic and pleasant touch, using tactile brushing stimulation. In total, 66 healthy subjects (37 women, age range 19-51 years) were examined. In study 1 (n = 20), five different stroking velocities were applied to the forearm and the inner thigh. The participants answered questions about partnership, mood, and touch. In study 2 (n = 46), the same five stroking velocities were applied to the forearm. The participants answered questions about partnership, touch, and sexuality. Both touch eroticism and pleasantness were rated significantly higher for C tactile optimal velocities compared with suboptimal velocities. No difference was found between the ratings of the thigh and the forearm. The velocity-dependent rating curves of pleasantness, intensity, and eroticism differed from each other. Pleasantness was best explained by a quadratic fit, intensity by a linear fit, and eroticism by both. A linear transformation of pleasantness and intensity predicted the observed eroticism ratings reliably. Eroticism ratings were negatively correlated with length of relationship. Touch was rated most erotic when perceived as pleasant and weak. In human hairy skin, perception of pleasantness is correlated with the firing rate of C tactile afferents, and perception of intensity is correlated with the firing rate of Aβ afferents. Accordingly, eroticism may be perceived most readily for touch stimuli that induce high activity in C tactile fibers and low activity in Aβ fibers. © 2015 International

  15. AWARENESS: Tactility and Experience as Transformational Strategy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Riisberg, Vibeke; Bang, Anne Louise; Locher, Laura

    2015-01-01

    with users. By employing participatory methods in the field of fashion and textiles, we seek to develop an alternative transformational strategy that may further the design of products and services for a more sustainable future. In the initial theoretical section, we define tactile sensibility, which...... “tacit knowledge” and a “tacit experience”. Finally, we conclude that if designers wish to promote change related to sustainability, it is likely that an embodied participatory dialogue that builds on the combination of user experience and tactile sensibility can be further developed into didactic tools...

  16. Stereo camera based virtual cane system with identifiable distance tactile feedback for the blind.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Donghun; Kim, Kwangtaek; Lee, Sangyoun

    2014-06-13

    In this paper, we propose a new haptic-assisted virtual cane system operated by a simple finger pointing gesture. The system is developed by two stages: development of visual information delivery assistant (VIDA) with a stereo camera and adding a tactile feedback interface with dual actuators for guidance and distance feedbacks. In the first stage, user's pointing finger is automatically detected using color and disparity data from stereo images and then a 3D pointing direction of the finger is estimated with its geometric and textural features. Finally, any object within the estimated pointing trajectory in 3D space is detected and the distance is then estimated in real time. For the second stage, identifiable tactile signals are designed through a series of identification experiments, and an identifiable tactile feedback interface is developed and integrated into the VIDA system. Our approach differs in that navigation guidance is provided by a simple finger pointing gesture and tactile distance feedbacks are perfectly identifiable to the blind.

  17. Stereo Camera Based Virtual Cane System with Identifiable Distance Tactile Feedback for the Blind

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Donghun Kim

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available In this paper, we propose a new haptic-assisted virtual cane system operated by a simple finger pointing gesture. The system is developed by two stages: development of visual information delivery assistant (VIDA with a stereo camera and adding a tactile feedback interface with dual actuators for guidance and distance feedbacks. In the first stage, user’s pointing finger is automatically detected using color and disparity data from stereo images and then a 3D pointing direction of the finger is estimated with its geometric and textural features. Finally, any object within the estimated pointing trajectory in 3D space is detected and the distance is then estimated in real time. For the second stage, identifiable tactile signals are designed through a series of identification experiments, and an identifiable tactile feedback interface is developed and integrated into the VIDA system. Our approach differs in that navigation guidance is provided by a simple finger pointing gesture and tactile distance feedbacks are perfectly identifiable to the blind.

  18. An Outdoor Navigation System for Blind Pedestrians Using GPS and Tactile-Foot Feedback

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ramiro Velázquez

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents a novel, wearable navigation system for visually impaired and blind pedestrians that combines a global positioning system (GPS for user outdoor localization and tactile-foot stimulation for information presentation. Real-time GPS data provided by a smartphone are processed by dedicated navigation software to determine the directions to a destination. Navigational directions are then encoded as vibrations and conveyed to the user via a tactile display that inserts into the shoe. The experimental results showed that users were capable of recognizing with high accuracy the tactile feedback provided to their feet. The preliminary tests conducted in outdoor locations involved two blind users who were guided along 380–420 m predetermined pathways, while sharing the space with other pedestrians and facing typical urban obstacles. The subjects successfully reached the target destinations. The results suggest that the proposed system enhances independent, safe navigation of blind pedestrians and show the potential of tactile-foot stimulation in assistive devices.

  19. Salience of Tactile Cues: An Examination of Tactor Actuator and Tactile Cue Characteristics

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-08-01

    Similarly, tactile alerts can help manage and focus attention in a complex high-tempo multitasked environment. Figure 1, while simple, can serve to...tactile cueing on concurrent performance of military and robotics tasks in a simulated multitasking environment. Ergonomics. 2008;51(8):1137–1152...2007;78(3):338. Moorhead IR, Holmes S, Furnell S. Understanding multisensory integration for pilot spatial orientation. Farnborough (UK): QinetiQ

  20. Unmyelinated Tactile Cutaneous Nerves Signal Erotic Sensations

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jönsson, Emma H; Backlund Wasling, Helena; Wagnbeck, Vicktoria; Dimitriadis, Menelaos; Georgiadis, Janniko R; Olausson, Håkan; Croy, Ilona

    IntroductionIntrapersonal touch is a powerful tool for communicating emotions and can among many things evoke feelings of eroticism and sexual arousal. The peripheral neural mechanisms of erotic touch signaling have been less studied. C tactile afferents (unmyelinated low-threshold

  1. Compact Tactile Sensors for Robot Fingers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, Toby B.; Lussy, David; Gaudiano, Frank; Hulse, Aaron; Diftler, Myron A.; Rodriguez, Dagoberto; Bielski, Paul; Butzer, Melisa

    2004-01-01

    Compact transducer arrays that measure spatial distributions of force or pressure have been demonstrated as prototypes of tactile sensors to be mounted on fingers and palms of dexterous robot hands. The pressure- or force-distribution feedback provided by these sensors is essential for the further development and implementation of robot-control capabilities for humanlike grasping and manipulation.

  2. Investigating Tactile Stimulation in Symbiotic Systems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Orso, Valeria; Mazza, Renato; Gamberini, Luciano

    2017-01-01

    The core characteristics of tactile stimuli, i.e., recognition reliability and tolerance to ambient interference, make them an ideal candidate to be integrated into a symbiotic system. The selection of the appropriate stimulation is indeed important in order not to hinder the interaction from...

  3. Footwear discrimination using dynamic tactile information

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Drimus, Alin; Mikov, Vedran

    2017-01-01

    Abstract: This paper shows that it is possible to differentiate among various type of footwear solely by using highly dimensional pressure information provided by a sensorised insole. In order to achieve this, a person equipped with two sensorised insoles streaming real-time tactile data to a com...

  4. An Investigation of the Use of Real-time Image Mosaicing for Facilitating Global Spatial Awareness in Visual Search

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soung Yee, Anthony

    Three experiments have been completed to investigate whether and how a software technique called real-time image mosaicing applied to a restricted field of view (FOV) might influence target detection and path integration performance in simulated aerial search scenarios, representing local and global spatial awareness tasks respectively. The mosaiced FOV (mFOV) was compared to single FOV (sFOV) and one with double the single size (dFOV). In addition to advancing our understanding of visual information in mosaicing, the present study examines the advantages and limitations of a number of metrics used to evaluate performance in path integration tasks, with particular attention paid to measuring performance in identifying complex routes. The highlights of the results are summarized as follows, according to Experiments 1 through 3 respectively. 1. A novel response method for evaluating route identification performance was developed. The surmised benefits of the mFOV relative to sFOV and dFOV revealed no significant differences in performance for the relatively simple route shapes tested. Compared to the mFOV and dFOV conditions, target detection performance in the local task was found to be superior in the sFOV condition. 2. In order to appropriately quantify the observed differences in complex route selections made by the participants, a novel analysis method was developed using the Thurstonian Paired Comparisons Method. 3. To investigate the effect of display size and elevation angle (EA) in a complex route environment, a 2x3 experiment was conducted for the two spatial tasks, at a height selected from Experiment 2. Although no significant differences were found in the target detection task, contrasts in the Paired Comparisons Method results revealed that route identification performance were as hypothesised: mFOV > dFOV > sFOV for EA = 90°. Results were similar for EA = 45°, but with mFOV being no different than dFOV. As hypothesised, EA was found to have an effect

  5. Tactile signage leads the way.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2004-10-01

    As implementation of Part III of the 1995 Disability Discrimination Act draws closer, service providers are looking to their obligations and how they can fulfil them in a cost-effective way. Most sighted people assume that blind or visually impaired people read Braille and therefore Braille signage is a perfectly adequate measure. In fact this is a misconception.

  6. The neural network involved in a bimanual tactile-tactile matching discrimination task: a functional imaging study at 3 T

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Habas, Christophe; Cabanis, Emmanuel A. [UPMC Paris 6, Service de NeuroImagerie, Hopital des Quinze-Vingts, Paris (France)

    2007-08-15

    The cerebral and cerebellar network involved in a bimanual object recognition was studied in blood oxygenation dependent level functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Nine healthy right-handed volunteers were scanned (1) while performing bilateral finger movements (nondiscrimination motor task), and (2) while performing a bimanual tactile-tactile matching discrimination task using small chess pieces (tactile discrimination task). Extensive activations were specifically observed in the parietal (SII, superior lateral lobule), insular, prefrontal, cingulate and neocerebellar cortices (HVIII), with a left predominance in motor areas, during the tactile discrimination task in contrast to the findings during the nondiscrimination motor task. Bimanual tactile-tactile matching discrimination recruits multiple sensorimotor and associative cerebral and neocerebellar networks (including the cerebellar second homunculus, HVIII), comparable to the neural circuits involved in unimanual tactile object recognition. (orig.)

  7. Attention affects visual perceptual processing near the hand.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cosman, Joshua D; Vecera, Shaun P

    2010-09-01

    Specialized, bimodal neural systems integrate visual and tactile information in the space near the hand. Here, we show that visuo-tactile representations allow attention to influence early perceptual processing, namely, figure-ground assignment. Regions that were reached toward were more likely than other regions to be assigned as foreground figures, and hand position competed with image-based information to bias figure-ground assignment. Our findings suggest that hand position allows attention to influence visual perceptual processing and that visual processes typically viewed as unimodal can be influenced by bimodal visuo-tactile representations.

  8. Toward a tactile language for human-robot interaction: two studies of tacton learning and performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barber, Daniel J; Reinerman-Jones, Lauren E; Matthews, Gerald

    2015-05-01

    Two experiments were performed to investigate the feasibility for robot-to-human communication of a tactile language using a lexicon of standardized tactons (tactile icons) within a sentence. Improvements in autonomous systems technology and a growing demand within military operations are spurring interest in communication via vibrotactile displays. Tactile communication may become an important element of human-robot interaction (HRI), but it requires the development of messaging capabilities approaching the communication power of the speech and visual signals used in the military. In Experiment 1 (N = 38), we trained participants to identify sets of directional, dynamic, and static tactons and tested performance and workload following training. In Experiment 2 (N = 76), we introduced an extended training procedure and tested participants' ability to correctly identify two-tacton phrases. We also investigated the impact of multitasking on performance and workload. Individual difference factors were assessed. Experiment 1 showed that participants found dynamic and static tactons difficult to learn, but the enhanced training procedure in Experiment 2 produced competency in performance for all tacton categories. Participants in the latter study also performed well on two-tacton phrases and when multitasking. However, some deficits in performance and elevation of workload were observed. Spatial ability predicted some aspects of performance in both studies. Participants may be trained to identify both single tactons and tacton phrases, demonstrating the feasibility of developing a tactile language for HRI. Tactile communication may be incorporated into multi-modal communication systems for HRI. It also has potential for human-human communication in challenging environments. © 2014, Human Factors and Ergonomics Society.

  9. Tactile thermal oral stimulation increases the cortical representation of swallowing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Suntrup Sonja

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Dysphagia is a leading complication in stroke patients causing aspiration pneumonia, malnutrition and increased mortality. Current strategies of swallowing therapy involve on the one hand modification of eating behaviour or swallowing technique and on the other hand facilitation of swallowing with the use of pharyngeal sensory stimulation. Thermal tactile oral stimulation (TTOS is an established method to treat patients with neurogenic dysphagia especially if caused by sensory deficits. Little is known about the possible mechanisms by which this interventional therapy may work. We employed whole-head MEG to study changes in cortical activation during self-paced volitional swallowing in fifteen healthy subjects with and without TTOS. Data were analyzed by means of synthetic aperture magnetometry (SAM and the group analysis of individual SAM data was performed using a permutation test. Results Compared to the normal swallowing task a significantly increased bilateral cortical activation was seen after oropharyngeal stimulation. Analysis of the chronological changes during swallowing suggests facilitation of both the oral and the pharyngeal phase of deglutition. Conclusion In the present study functional cortical changes elicited by oral sensory stimulation could be demonstrated. We suggest that these results reflect short-term cortical plasticity of sensory swallowing areas. These findings facilitate our understanding of the role of cortical reorganization in dysphagia treatment and recovery.

  10. 5G-Enabled Tactile Internet

    OpenAIRE

    Simsek, Meryem; Aijaz, Adnan; Dohler, Mischa; Sachs, Joachim; Fettweis, Gerhard

    2016-01-01

    The long-term ambition of the Tactile Internet is to enable a democratization of skill, and how it is being delivered globally. An integral part of this is to be able to transmit touch in perceived real-time, which is enabled by suitable robotics and haptics equipment at the edges, along with an unprecedented communications network. The fifth generation (5G) mobile communications systems will underpin this emerging Internet at the wireless edge. This paper presents the most important technolo...

  11. Paper-Based Active Tactile Sensor Array.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhong, Qize; Zhong, Junwen; Cheng, Xiaofeng; Yao, Xu; Wang, Bo; Li, Wenbo; Wu, Nan; Liu, Kang; Hu, Bin; Zhou, Jun

    2015-11-25

    A paper-based active tactile sensor -array (PATSA) with a dynamic sensitivity of 0.35 V N(-1) is demonstrated. The pixel position of the PATSA can be routed by analyzing the real-time recording voltages in the pressing process. The PATSA performance, which remains functional when removing partial areas, reveals that the device has a potential application to customized electronic skins. © 2015 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  12. Conveying Looming with a Localized Tactile Cue

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-04-01

    used to feel forward, in order to be warned of obstacles and passages. Moreover, when people are deprived of a normal sense of touch in their feet...evidence that vibrotactile flow fields can be exploited to modify feelings of self-motion. Kolev and Rupert (2008) reported that vibrotactile flow could...1970) later described the use of this site for two-dimensional tracking of moving targets. More recently, while testing sites for a tactile prosthesis

  13. Tactile Digital Video Globes: a New Way to Outreach Oceanography.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poteau, A.; Claustre, H.; Scheurle, C.; Jessin, T.; Fontana, C.

    2016-02-01

    One objective of the "Ocean Autonomous Observation" team of the Laboratory of Oceanography of Villefranche-sur-mer is to develop new means to outreach our science activities to various audiences. Besides the scientific community, this includes students and targets the general public, school pupils, and stakeholders. In this context, we have acquired a digital video globe with tactile capabilities and we will present here the various applications that we have been developing. A first type of products concerns the visualization of oceanic properties (SST, salinity, density, Chla, O2, NO3, irradiance) by diving from the surface (generally from satellite data) into the Ocean interior (through the use of global data bases, Argo, WOA). In second place, specific applications deal with surface animations allowing highlighting the seasonality of some properties (Chla, SST, ice cover, currents; based on satellite as well as modeling outputs). Finally, we show a variety of applications developed using the tactile functionality of the spherical display. In particular real-time vertical profiles acquired by Bio-Argo floats become directly accessible for the entire open ocean. Such a new tool plus its novel applications has been presented to school children, and to the wider public (at the so-called "fête de la science") as well as to potential sponsors of our science-outreach activities. Their feedback has always been highly positive and encouraging in terms of impact. From the scientists point of view, the use of this new support can easily compete with the classical PowerPoint, is much more attractive and fun and undeniably helps to outreach the various aspects of our pluridisciplinary science.

  14. Pure Amorphagnosia without Tactile Object Agnosia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shinichirou Kubota

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available A 54-year-old female showed amorphagnosia without ahylognosia and tactile agnosia 40 days after the onset of right cerebral infarction. Her basic somatosensory functions were normal. The appreciation of substance qualities (hylognosia was preserved, but the patient’s inability to recognize the size and shape (morphagnosia was confined to 2- and 3-dimensional shapes (amorphagnosia in the left hand. However, the patient’s ability to recognize real daily objects was well preserved. Brain MRI after admission showed ischemic lesions confined to the right pre- and postcentral gyri and the medial frontal cortex on DWI and FLAIR images. An analysis of SPECT images revealed that the most decreased areas were localized to the pre- and postcentral gyri, superior and inferior parietal lobules, supramarginal gyrus, and angular gyrus. Considering the previous reported cases, the responsible lesion for the impaired perception of hylognosia and morphagnosia may not necessarily be confined to the right hemisphere. To date, 5 reports (6 cases of tactile agnosia have been published; 4 cases presented with both ahylognosia and amorphagnosia, while 1 presented with only amorphagnosia, and another showed amorphagnosia and mild ahylognosia. Our case is the first to present with only amorphagnosia without tactile agnosia. The mechanism for the well-preserved recognition of real objects may depend on the preserved hylognosia. Of note, there have been no reports showing only ahylognosia without amorphagnosia. Further studies are necessary to clarify whether or not patients with preserved hylognosia or morphagnosia retain the ability to perceive real objects.

  15. Pure Amorphagnosia without Tactile Object Agnosia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kubota, Shinichirou; Yamada, Mai; Satoh, Hideyo; Satoh, Akira; Tsujihata, Mitsuhiro

    2017-01-01

    A 54-year-old female showed amorphagnosia without ahylognosia and tactile agnosia 40 days after the onset of right cerebral infarction. Her basic somatosensory functions were normal. The appreciation of substance qualities (hylognosia) was preserved, but the patient's inability to recognize the size and shape (morphagnosia) was confined to 2- and 3-dimensional shapes (amorphagnosia) in the left hand. However, the patient's ability to recognize real daily objects was well preserved. Brain MRI after admission showed ischemic lesions confined to the right pre- and postcentral gyri and the medial frontal cortex on DWI and FLAIR images. An analysis of SPECT images revealed that the most decreased areas were localized to the pre- and postcentral gyri, superior and inferior parietal lobules, supramarginal gyrus, and angular gyrus. Considering the previous reported cases, the responsible lesion for the impaired perception of hylognosia and morphagnosia may not necessarily be confined to the right hemisphere. To date, 5 reports (6 cases) of tactile agnosia have been published; 4 cases presented with both ahylognosia and amorphagnosia, while 1 presented with only amorphagnosia, and another showed amorphagnosia and mild ahylognosia. Our case is the first to present with only amorphagnosia without tactile agnosia. The mechanism for the well-preserved recognition of real objects may depend on the preserved hylognosia. Of note, there have been no reports showing only ahylognosia without amorphagnosia. Further studies are necessary to clarify whether or not patients with preserved hylognosia or morphagnosia retain the ability to perceive real objects.

  16. Generalization of a tactile stimulus in horses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dougherty, D M; Lewis, P

    1993-05-01

    Using horses, we investigated the control of operant behavior by a tactile stimulus (the training stimulus) and the generalization of behavior to six other similar test stimuli. In a stall, the experimenters mounted a response panel in the doorway. Located on this panel were a response lever and a grain dispenser. The experimenters secured a tactile-stimulus belt to the horse's back. The stimulus belt was constructed by mounting seven solenoids along a piece of burlap in a manner that allowed each to provide the delivery of a tactile stimulus, a repetitive light tapping, at different locations (spaced 10.0 cm apart) along the horse's back. Two preliminary steps were necessary before generalization testing: training a measurable response (lip pressing) and training on several reinforcement schedules in the presence of a training stimulus (tapping by one of the solenoids). We then gave each horse two generalization test sessions. Results indicated that the horses' behavior was effectively controlled by the training stimulus. Horses made the greatest number of responses to the training stimulus, and the tendency to respond to the other test stimuli diminished as the stimuli became farther away from the training stimulus. These findings are discussed in the context of behavioral principles and their relevance to the training of horses.

  17. Design and Qualitative Evaluation of Tactile Devices for Stroke Rehabilitation

    OpenAIRE

    Merrett, Geoff V; Metcalf, Cheryl D; Zheng, Deyi; Cunningham, Sarah; Barrow, Stuart; Demain, Sara H

    2011-01-01

    Rehabilitation environments combining virtual reality with everyday motor tasks can promote recovery from neurological illness, such as stroke. Tactile devices, providing physical stimulation to the skin, may improve motor retraining. While many tactile devices have been reported, there is a distinct paucity of studies evaluating how they are perceived. This multidisciplinary research has investigated three tactile devices (vibration motors, a motor-driven ‘squeezer’, and shape memory alloys)...

  18. Autism spectrum disorder in the scope of tactile processing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mark Mikkelsen

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Sensory processing abnormalities are among the most common behavioral phenotypes seen in autism spectrum disorder (ASD, typically characterized by either over- or under-responsiveness to stimulation. In this review, we focus on tactile processing dysfunction in ASD. We firstly review clinical studies wherein sensitivity to tactile stimuli has traditionally been assessed by self-, parent- and experimenter-reports. We also discuss recent investigations using psychophysical paradigms that gauge individual tactile thresholds. These more experimentally rigorous studies allow for more objective assessments of tactile abnormalities in ASD. However, little is understood about the neurobiological mechanisms underlying these abnormalities, or the link between tactile abnormalities and ASD symptoms. Neurobiological research that has been conducted has pointed toward dysfunction in the excitation/inhibition balance of the central nervous system of those with ASD. This review covers recent efforts that have investigated tactile dysfunction in ASD from clinical and behavioral perspectives, and some of the efforts to link these to neurobiology. On the whole, findings are inconsistent, which can be ascribed to the subjectivity of clinical assessments, the heterogeneity of ASD cohorts, and the diversity of tactile sensitivity measures. Future endeavors into understanding tactile processing differences in ASD will greatly benefit from controlled experiments driven by neurobiological hypotheses. Keywords: Autism spectrum disorder, Psychophysics, Review, Touch, Somatosensory, Tactile processing

  19. A Modified Tactile Brush Algorithm for Complex Touch Gestures

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ragan, Eric [Texas A& M University

    2015-01-01

    Several researchers have investigated phantom tactile sensation (i.e., the perception of a nonexistent actuator between two real actuators) and apparent tactile motion (i.e., the perception of a moving actuator due to time delays between onsets of multiple actuations). Prior work has focused primarily on determining appropriate Durations of Stimulation (DOS) and Stimulus Onset Asynchronies (SOA) for simple touch gestures, such as a single finger stroke. To expand upon this knowledge, we investigated complex touch gestures involving multiple, simultaneous points of contact, such as a whole hand touching the arm. To implement complex touch gestures, we modified the Tactile Brush algorithm to support rectangular areas of tactile stimulation.

  20. Tactile interactions activate mirror system regions in the human brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McKyton, Ayelet

    2011-12-07

    Communicating with others is essential for the development of a society. Although types of communications, such as language and visual gestures, were thoroughly investigated in the past, little research has been done to investigate interactions through touch. To study this we used functional magnetic resonance imaging. Twelve participants were scanned with their eyes covered while stroking four kinds of items, representing different somatosensory stimuli: a human hand, a realistic rubber hand, an object, and a simple texture. Although the human and the rubber hands had the same overall shape, in three regions there was significantly more blood oxygen level dependent activation when touching the real hand: the anterior medial prefrontal cortex, the ventral premotor cortex, and the posterior superior temporal cortex. The last two regions are part of the mirror network and are known to be activated through visual interactions such as gestures. Interestingly, in this study, these areas were activated through a somatosensory interaction. A control experiment was performed to eliminate confounds of temperature, texture, and imagery, suggesting that the activation in these areas was correlated with the touch of a human hand. These results reveal the neuronal network working behind human tactile interactions, and highlight the participation of the mirror system in such functions.

  1. TMS of the occipital cortex induces tactile sensations in the fingers of blind Braille readers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ptito, M; Fumal, A; de Noordhout, A Martens; Schoenen, J; Gjedde, A; Kupers, R

    2008-01-01

    Various non-visual inputs produce cross-modal responses in the visual cortex of early blind subjects. In order to determine the qualitative experience associated with these occipital activations, we systematically stimulated the entire occipital cortex using single pulse transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) in early blind subjects and in blindfolded seeing controls. Whereas blindfolded seeing controls reported only phosphenes following occipital cortex stimulation, some of the blind subjects reported tactile sensations in the fingers that were somatotopically organized onto the visual cortex. The number of cortical sites inducing tactile sensations appeared to be related to the number of hours of Braille reading per day, Braille reading speed and dexterity. These data, taken in conjunction with previous anatomical, behavioural and functional imaging results, suggest the presence of a polysynaptic cortical pathway between the somatosensory cortex and the visual cortex in early blind subjects. These results also add new evidence that the activity of the occipital lobe in the blind takes its qualitative expression from the character of its new input source, therefore supporting the cortical deference hypothesis.

  2. Tactile Perception in Adults with Autism: A Multidimensional Psychophysical Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cascio, Carissa; McGlone, Francis; Folger, Stephen; Tannan, Vinay; Baranek, Grace; Pelphrey, Kevin A.; Essick, Gregory

    2008-01-01

    Although sensory problems, including unusual tactile sensitivity, are heavily associated with autism, there is a dearth of rigorous psychophysical research. We compared tactile sensation in adults with autism to controls on the palm and forearm, the latter innervated by low-threshold unmyelinated afferents subserving a social/affiliative…

  3. Integration of auditory and tactile inputs in musical meter perception.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Juan; Gamble, Darik; Sarnlertsophon, Kristine; Wang, Xiaoqin; Hsiao, Steven

    2013-01-01

    Musicians often say that they not only hear but also "feel" music. To explore the contribution of tactile information to "feeling" music, we investigated the degree that auditory and tactile inputs are integrated in humans performing a musical meter-recognition task. Subjects discriminated between two types of sequences, "duple" (march-like rhythms) and "triple" (waltz-like rhythms), presented in three conditions: (1) unimodal inputs (auditory or tactile alone); (2) various combinations of bimodal inputs, where sequences were distributed between the auditory and tactile channels such that a single channel did not produce coherent meter percepts; and (3) bimodal inputs where the two channels contained congruent or incongruent meter cues. We first show that meter is perceived similarly well (70-85 %) when tactile or auditory cues are presented alone. We next show in the bimodal experiments that auditory and tactile cues are integrated to produce coherent meter percepts. Performance is high (70-90 %) when all of the metrically important notes are assigned to one channel and is reduced to 60 % when half of these notes are assigned to one channel. When the important notes are presented simultaneously to both channels, congruent cues enhance meter recognition (90 %). Performance dropped dramatically when subjects were presented with incongruent auditory cues (10 %), as opposed to incongruent tactile cues (60 %), demonstrating that auditory input dominates meter perception. These observations support the notion that meter perception is a cross-modal percept with tactile inputs underlying the perception of "feeling" music.

  4. Tactile learning in rodents: Neurobiology and neuropharmacology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roohbakhsh, Ali; Shamsizadeh, Ali; Arababadi, Mohammad Kazemi; Ayoobi, Fateme; Fatemi, Iman; Allahtavakoli, Mohammad; Mohammad-Zadeh, Mohammad

    2016-02-15

    Animal models of learning and memory have been the subject of considerable research. Rodents such as mice and rats are nocturnal animals with poor vision, and their survival depends on their sense of touch. Recent reports have shown that whisker somatosensation is the main channel through which rodents collect and process environmental information. This review describes tactile learning in rodents from a neurobiological and neuropharmacological perspective, and how this is involved in memory-related processes. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. Novel high resolution tactile robotic fingertips

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Drimus, Alin; Jankovics, Vince; Gorsic, Matija

    2014-01-01

    This paper describes a novel robotic fingertip based on piezoresistive rubber that can sense pressure tactile stimuli with a high spatial resolution over curved surfaces. The working principle is based on a three-layer sandwich structure (conductive electrodes on top and bottom and piezoresistive...... with specialized data acquisition electronics that acquire 500 frames per second provides rich information regarding contact force, shape and angle for bio- inspired robotic fingertips. Furthermore, a model of estimating the force of contact based on values of the cells is proposed....

  6. Comparative Evaluation of Tactile Sensation by Electrical and Mechanical Stimulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yem, Vibol; Kajimoto, Hiroyuki

    2017-01-01

    An electrotactile display is a tactile interface that provides tactile perception by passing electrical current through the surface of the skin. It is actively used instead of mechanical tactile displays for tactile feedback because of several advantages such as its small and thin size, light weight, and high responsiveness. However, the similarities and differences between these sensations is still not clear. This study directly compares the intensity sensation of electrotactile stimulation to that of mechanical stimulation, and investigates the characteristic sensation of anodic and cathodic stimulation. In the experiment, participants underwent a 30 pps electrotactile stimulus every one second to their middle finger, and were asked to match this intensity by adjusting the intensity of a mechanical tactile stimulus to an index finger. The results showed that anodic stimulation mainly produced vibration sensation, whereas cathodic sensation produced both vibration and pressure sensations. Relatively low pressure sensation was also observed for anodic stimulation but it remains low, regardless of the increasing of electrical intensity.

  7. Neurosurgical tactile discrimination training with haptic-based virtual reality simulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patel, Achal; Koshy, Nick; Ortega-Barnett, Juan; Chan, Hoi C; Kuo, Yong-Fan; Luciano, Cristian; Rizzi, Silvio; Matulyauskas, Martin; Kania, Patrick; Banerjee, Pat; Gasco, Jaime

    2014-12-01

    To determine if a computer-based simulation with haptic technology can help surgical trainees improve tactile discrimination using surgical instruments. Twenty junior medical students participated in the study and were randomized into two groups. Subjects in Group A participated in virtual simulation training using the ImmersiveTouch simulator (ImmersiveTouch, Inc., Chicago, IL, USA) that required differentiating the firmness of virtual spheres using tactile and kinesthetic sensation via haptic technology. Subjects in Group B did not undergo any training. With their visual fields obscured, subjects in both groups were then evaluated on their ability to use the suction and bipolar instruments to find six elastothane objects with areas ranging from 1.5 to 3.5 cm2 embedded in a urethane foam brain cavity model while relying on tactile and kinesthetic sensation only. A total of 73.3% of the subjects in Group A (simulation training) were able to find the brain cavity objects in comparison to 53.3% of the subjects in Group B (no training) (P  =  0.0183). There was a statistically significant difference in the total number of Group A subjects able to find smaller brain cavity objects (size ≤ 2.5 cm2) compared to that in Group B (72.5 vs. 40%, P  =  0.0032). On the other hand, no significant difference in the number of subjects able to detect larger objects (size ≧ 3 cm2) was found between Groups A and B (75 vs. 80%, P  =  0.7747). Virtual computer-based simulators with integrated haptic technology may improve tactile discrimination required for microsurgical technique.

  8. Getting a Feel for Eclipses: A Tactile Discovery of an Awe-inspiring Celestial Event

    Science.gov (United States)

    Runyon, C. R.; Hall, C.; Hurd, D.; Minafra, J.; Williams, M. N.; Quinn, K.

    2017-12-01

    Solar eclipses provide a unique viewing opportunity for people across the world. August 21, 2017 was no exception. From Oregon to South Carolina, viewers were able to witness this remarkable phenomenon as the Moon comes between the Sun and Earth, casting a shadow on Earth. From a personal social / emotional standpoint seeing a total solar eclipse is indescribable and unforgettable. For the sighted, such an event is experienced through a combination of multiple senses, not just sight. For those people who are Blind / visually impaired (B/VI), the experience is different. While they may sense changes in the intensity of the sunlight, temperature, and animal noises, they are unable to "see" what is happening. How might this remarkable experience be brought to life for the B/VI? The NASA Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute Center for Lunar and Asteroid Surface Science (SSERVI CLASS) education/public engagement team developed a tactile book to do just this. The tactile book, Getting a Feel for Eclipses, provides users who are B/VI a means to see and experience the total solar eclipse through their fingertips. The unique, hand-made, tactile graphics are created from various textured materials such that each feature is readily identified. A QR code associated with the book provides access to digital content describing each tactile. Through this delivery mechanism, users who are B/VI, or even sighted may access the content with any smart device. Distributed to Schools for the Blind, national organizations for the Blind, Libraries, Museums and Science Centers across the country, the book helped bring a rare event to life for thousands of people who may not have otherwise been able to experience the eclipse. We look forward to 2024 when the U.S. will once again host the "path of totality." Until then, Getting a Feel for Eclipses will continue to serve as a guide to those interested, and an updated eclipse path map will continue to make the book pertinent.

  9. The magnetic touch illusion: A perceptual correlate of visuo-tactile integration in peripersonal space.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guterstam, Arvid; Zeberg, Hugo; Özçiftci, Vedat Menderes; Ehrsson, H Henrik

    2016-10-01

    To accurately localize our limbs and guide movements toward external objects, the brain must represent the body and its surrounding (peripersonal) visual space. Specific multisensory neurons encode peripersonal space in the monkey brain, and neurobehavioral studies have suggested the existence of a similar representation in humans. However, because peripersonal space lacks a distinct perceptual correlate, its involvement in spatial and bodily perception remains unclear. Here, we show that applying brushstrokes in mid-air at some distance above a rubber hand-without touching it-in synchrony with brushstrokes applied to a participant's hidden real hand results in the illusory sensation of a "magnetic force" between the brush and the rubber hand, which strongly correlates with the perception of the rubber hand as one's own. In eight experiments, we characterized this "magnetic touch illusion" by using quantitative subjective reports, motion tracking, and behavioral data consisting of pointing errors toward the rubber hand in an intermanual pointing task. We found that the illusion depends on visuo-tactile synchrony and exhibits similarities with the visuo-tactile receptive field properties of peripersonal space neurons, featuring a non-linear decay at 40cm that is independent of gaze direction and follows changes in the rubber hand position. Moreover, the "magnetic force" does not penetrate physical barriers, thus further linking this phenomenon to body-specific visuo-tactile integration processes. These findings provide strong support for the notion that multisensory integration within peripersonal space underlies bodily self-attribution. Furthermore, we propose that the magnetic touch illusion constitutes a perceptual correlate of visuo-tactile integration in peripersonal space. Copyright © 2016 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  10. Tactile feedback is an effective instrument for the training of grasping with a prosthesis at low- and medium-force levels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Nunzio, Alessandro Marco; Dosen, Strahinja; Lemling, Sabrina; Markovic, Marko; Schweisfurth, Meike Annika; Ge, Nan; Graimann, Bernhard; Falla, Deborah; Farina, Dario

    2017-08-01

    Grasping is a complex task routinely performed in an anticipatory (feedforward) manner, where sensory feedback is responsible for learning and updating the internal model of grasp dynamics. This study aims at evaluating whether providing a proportional tactile force feedback during the myoelectric control of a prosthesis facilitates learning a stable internal model of the prosthesis force control. Ten able-bodied subjects controlled a sensorized myoelectric prosthesis performing four blocks of consecutive grasps at three levels of target force (30, 50, and 70%), repeatedly closing the fully opened hand. In the first and third block, the subjects received tactile and visual feedback, respectively, while during the second and fourth block, the feedback was removed. The subjects also performed an additional block with no feedback 1 day after the training (Retest). The median and interquartile range of the generated forces was computed to assess the accuracy and precision of force control. The results demonstrated that the feedback was indeed an effective instrument for the training of prosthesis control. After the training, the subjects were still able to accurately generate the desired force for the low and medium target (30 and 50% of maximum force available in a prosthesis), despite the feedback being removed within the session and during the retest (low target force). However, the training was substantially less successful for high forces (70% of prosthesis maximum force), where subjects exhibited a substantial loss of accuracy as soon as the feedback was removed. The precision of control decreased with higher forces and it was consistent across conditions, determined by an intrinsic variability of repeated myoelectric grasping. This study demonstrated that the subject could rely on the tactile feedback to adjust the motor command to the prosthesis across trials. The subjects adjusted the mean level of muscle activation (accuracy), whereas the precision could not

  11. Connected cane: Tactile button input for controlling gestures of iOS voiceover embedded in a white cane.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Batterman, Jared M; Martin, Vincent F; Yeung, Derek; Walker, Bruce N

    2018-01-01

    Accessibility of assistive consumer devices is an emerging research area with potential to benefit both users with and without visual impairments. In this article, we discuss the research and evaluation of using a tactile button interface to control an iOS device's native VoiceOver Gesture navigations (Apple Accessibility, 2014). This research effort identified potential safety and accessibility issues for users trying to interact and control their touchscreen mobile iOS devices while traveling independently. Furthermore, this article discusses the participatory design process in creating a solution that aims to solve issues in utilizing a tactile button interface in a novel device. The overall goal of this study is to enable visually impaired white cane users to access their mobile iOS device's capabilities navigation aids more safely and efficiently on the go.

  12. Spatial asymmetry in tactile sensor skin deformation aids perception of edge orientation during haptic exploration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ponce Wong, Ruben D; Hellman, Randall B; Santos, Veronica J

    2014-01-01

    Upper-limb amputees rely primarily on visual feedback when using their prostheses to interact with others or objects in their environment. A constant reliance upon visual feedback can be mentally exhausting and does not suffice for many activities when line-of-sight is unavailable. Upper-limb amputees could greatly benefit from the ability to perceive edges, one of the most salient features of 3D shape, through touch alone. We present an approach for estimating edge orientation with respect to an artificial fingertip through haptic exploration using a multimodal tactile sensor on a robot hand. Key parameters from the tactile signals for each of four exploratory procedures were used as inputs to a support vector regression model. Edge orientation angles ranging from -90 to 90 degrees were estimated with an 85-input model having an R (2) of 0.99 and RMS error of 5.08 degrees. Electrode impedance signals provided the most useful inputs by encoding spatially asymmetric skin deformation across the entire fingertip. Interestingly, sensor regions that were not in direct contact with the stimulus provided particularly useful information. Methods described here could pave the way for semi-autonomous capabilities in prosthetic or robotic hands during haptic exploration, especially when visual feedback is unavailable.

  13. Mechanisms of tactile sensory deterioration amongst the elderly.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skedung, Lisa; El Rawadi, Charles; Arvidsson, Martin; Farcet, Céline; Luengo, Gustavo S; Breton, Lionel; Rutland, Mark W

    2018-04-19

    It is known that roughness-smoothness, hardness-softness, stickiness-slipperiness and warm-cold are predominant perceptual dimensions in macro-, micro- and nano- texture perception. However, it is not clear to what extent active tactile texture discrimination remains intact with age. The general decrease in tactile ability induces physical and emotional dysfunction in elderly, and has increasing significance for an aging population. We report a method to quantify tactile acuity based on blinded active exploration of systematically varying micro-textured surfaces and a same-different paradigm. It reveals that elderly participants show significantly reduced fine texture discrimination ability. The elderly group also displays statistically lower finger friction coefficient, moisture and elasticity, suggesting a link. However, a subpopulation of the elderly retains discrimination ability irrespective of cutaneous condition and this can be related to a higher density of somatosensory receptors on the finger pads. Skin tribology is thus not the primary reason for decline of tactile discrimination with age. The remediation of cutaneous properties through rehydration, however leads to a significantly improved tactile acuity. This indicates unambiguously that neurological tactile loss can be temporarily compensated by restoring the cutaneous contact mechanics. Such mechanical restoration of tactile ability has the potential to increase the quality of life in elderly.

  14. Tactile Experience Shapes Prey-Capture Behavior in Etruscan Shrews

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael eBrecht

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available A crucial role of tactile experience for the maturation of neural response properties in the somatosensory system is well established, but little is known about the role of tactile experience in the development of tactile behaviors. Here we study how tactile experience affects prey capture behavior in Etruscan shrews, Suncus etruscus. Prey capture in adult shrews is a high-speed behavior that relies on precise attacks guided by tactile Gestalt cues. We studied the role of tactile experience by three different approaches. First, we analyzed the hunting skills of young shrews right after weaning. We found that prey capture in young animals is most but not all aspects similar to that of adults. Second we performed whisker trimming for three to four weeks after birth. Such deprivation resulted in a lasting disruption of prey capture even after whisker re-growth: attacks lacked precise targeting and had a lower success rate. Third, we presented adult shrews with an entirely novel prey species, the giant cockroach. The shape of this roach is very different from the shrew’s normal (cricket prey and the thorax – the preferred point of attack in crickets – is protected a heavy cuticle. Initially shrews attacked giant roaches the same way they attack crickets and targeted the thoracic region. With progressive experience, however, shrews adopted a new attack strategy targeting legs and underside of the roaches while avoiding other body parts. Speed and efficiency of attacks improved. These data suggest that tactile experience shapes prey capture behavior.

  15. Optical Three-Axis Tactile Sensor for Robotic Fingers

    OpenAIRE

    Ohka, Masahiro; Takata, Jumpei; Kobayashi, Hiroaki; Suzuki, Hirofumi; Morisawa, Nobuyuki; Yussof, Hanafiah Bin

    2008-01-01

    A new three-axis tactile sensor to be mounted on multi-fingered hands is developed based on the principle of an optical waveguide-type tactile sensor comprised of an acrylic hemispherical dome, a light source, an array of rubber sensing elements, and a CCD camera. The sensing element of the present tactile sensor includes one columnar feeler and eight conical feelers. A three-axis force applied to the tip of the sensing element is detected by the contact areas of the conical feelers, which ma...

  16. Neuroplasticity associated with tactile language communication in a deaf-blind subject

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Souzana Obretenova

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available A longstanding debate in cognitive neuroscience pertains to the innate nature of language development and the underlying factors that determine this faculty. We explored the neural correlates associated with language processing in a unique individual who is early blind, congenitally deaf, and possesses a high level of language function. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI, we compared the neural networks associated with the tactile reading of words presented in Braille, Print on Palm (POP, and a haptic form of American Sign Language (haptic ASL or hASL. With all three modes of tactile communication, indentifying words was associated with robust activation within occipital cortical regions as well as posterior superior temporal and inferior frontal language areas (lateralized within the left hemisphere. In a normally sighted and hearing interpreter, identifying words through hASL was associated with left-lateralized activation of inferior frontal language areas however robust occipital cortex activation was not observed. Diffusion tensor imaging (DTI-based tractography revealed differences consistent with enhanced occipital-temporal connectivity in the deaf-blind subject. Our results demonstrate that in the case of early onset of both visual and auditory deprivation, tactile-based communication is associated with an extensive cortical network implicating occipital as well as posterior superior temporal and frontal associated language areas. The cortical areas activated in this deaf-blind subject are consistent with characteristic cortical regions previously implicated with language. Finally, the resilience of language function within the context of early and combined visual and auditory deprivation may be related to enhanced connectivity between relevant cortical areas.

  17. Acquisition of a bodily-tactile language as first language

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ask Larsen, Flemming

    2013-01-01

    Language acquisition in the bodily-tactile modality is difficult to understand, describe, and support. This chapter advocates a reinterpretation of the gestural and idiosyncratic bodily-tactile communication of people with congenital deafblindness (CDB) in terms of early language acquisition...... towards Tactile Sign Language (TSL). The access to participation in complex TSL culture is crucial for language acquisition. We already know how to transfer the patterns of social interaction into the bodily-tactile modality. This is the fundation on which to build actual linguistic participation. TSL...... as a first language is presently a theoretic possibility. We need more research on how to accommodate TSL to language Development and on how to fit TSL into participation in complex cultural activities....

  18. Visual and cross-modal cues increase the identification of overlapping visual stimuli in Balint's syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Imperio, Daniela; Scandola, Michele; Gobbetto, Valeria; Bulgarelli, Cristina; Salgarello, Matteo; Avesani, Renato; Moro, Valentina

    2017-10-01

    Cross-modal interactions improve the processing of external stimuli, particularly when an isolated sensory modality is impaired. When information from different modalities is integrated, object recognition is facilitated probably as a result of bottom-up and top-down processes. The aim of this study was to investigate the potential effects of cross-modal stimulation in a case of simultanagnosia. We report a detailed analysis of clinical symptoms and an 18 F-fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG) brain positron emission tomography/computed tomography (PET/CT) study of a patient affected by Balint's syndrome, a rare and invasive visual-spatial disorder following bilateral parieto-occipital lesions. An experiment was conducted to investigate the effects of visual and nonvisual cues on performance in tasks involving the recognition of overlapping pictures. Four modalities of sensory cues were used: visual, tactile, olfactory, and auditory. Data from neuropsychological tests showed the presence of ocular apraxia, optic ataxia, and simultanagnosia. The results of the experiment indicate a positive effect of the cues on the recognition of overlapping pictures, not only in the identification of the congruent valid-cued stimulus (target) but also in the identification of the other, noncued stimuli. All the sensory modalities analyzed (except the auditory stimulus) were efficacious in terms of increasing visual recognition. Cross-modal integration improved the patient's ability to recognize overlapping figures. However, while in the visual unimodal modality both bottom-up (priming, familiarity effect, disengagement of attention) and top-down processes (mental representation and short-term memory, the endogenous orientation of attention) are involved, in the cross-modal integration it is semantic representations that mainly activate visual recognition processes. These results are potentially useful for the design of rehabilitation training for attentional and visual-perceptual deficits.

  19. RETENTION OF HIGH TACTILE ACUITY THROUGHOUT THE LIFESPAN IN BLINDNESS

    OpenAIRE

    Legge, Gordon E.; Madison, Cindee; Vaughn, Brenna N.; Cheong, Allen M.Y.; Miller, Joseph C.

    2008-01-01

    Previous studies of tactile acuity on the fingertip using passive touch have demonstrated an age-related decline in spatial resolution for both sighted and blind subjects. We have re-examined this age dependence with two newly designed tactile-acuity charts requiring active exploration of the test symbols. One chart used dot patterns similar to Braille and the other used embossed Landolt rings. Groups of blind Braille readers and sighted subjects, ranging in age from 12 to 85 years, were test...

  20. A Distributed Tactile Sensor for Intuitive Human-Robot Interfacing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea Cirillo

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Safety of human-robot physical interaction is enabled not only by suitable robot control strategies but also by suitable sensing technologies. For example, if distributed tactile sensors were available on the robot, they could be used not only to detect unintentional collisions, but also as human-machine interface by enabling a new mode of social interaction with the machine. Starting from their previous works, the authors developed a conformable distributed tactile sensor that can be easily conformed to the different parts of the robot body. Its ability to estimate contact force components and to provide a tactile map with an accurate spatial resolution enables the robot to handle both unintentional collisions in safe human-robot collaboration tasks and intentional touches where the sensor is used as human-machine interface. In this paper, the authors present the characterization of the proposed tactile sensor and they show how it can be also exploited to recognize haptic tactile gestures, by tailoring recognition algorithms, well known in the image processing field, to the case of tactile images. In particular, a set of haptic gestures has been defined to test three recognition algorithms on a group of 20 users. The paper demonstrates how the same sensor originally designed to manage unintentional collisions can be successfully used also as human-machine interface.

  1. The potential for developing a tactile communication system based on Blissymbolics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Isaacson, Mick D; Lloyd, Lyle L

    2015-02-01

    To be useful for tactile communication, tactile stimuli need to be discriminable from each other. The objective of this study was to determine whether raised-line renderings of Blissymbols have the capacity for being developed into a tactile communication system as measured by their tactile discriminability. Tactile discrimination of Blissymbols was measured by performance on a task in which participants were asked to feel a target raised-line Blissymbol and then to find the target within an array containing the target and raised-line Blissymbol foils. The vast majority of tactile Blissymbols had tactile discrimination scores of 90% accuracy or better. Most raised-line Blissymbols can be tactilely discriminated from each other, indicating that they have the potential for being developed into a tactile communication system.

  2. The integration of audio-tactile information is modulated by multimodal social interaction with physical contact in infancy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tanaka, Yukari; Kanakogi, Yasuhiro; Kawasaki, Masahiro; Myowa, Masako

    2018-04-01

    Interaction between caregivers and infants is multimodal in nature. To react interactively and smoothly to such multimodal signals, infants must integrate all these signals. However, few empirical infant studies have investigated how multimodal social interaction with physical contact facilitates multimodal integration, especially regarding audio - tactile (A-T) information. By using electroencephalogram (EEG) and event-related potentials (ERPs), the present study investigated how neural processing involved in A-T integration is modulated by tactile interaction. Seven- to 8-months-old infants heard one pseudoword both whilst being tickled (multimodal 'A-T' condition), and not being tickled (unimodal 'A' condition). Thereafter, their EEG was measured during the perception of the same words. Compared to the A condition, the A-T condition resulted in enhanced ERPs and higher beta-band activity within the left temporal regions, indicating neural processing of A-T integration. Additionally, theta-band activity within the middle frontal region was enhanced, which may reflect enhanced attention to social information. Furthermore, differential ERPs correlated with the degree of engagement in the tickling interaction. We provide neural evidence that the integration of A-T information in infants' brains is facilitated through tactile interaction with others. Such plastic changes in neural processing may promote harmonious social interaction and effective learning in infancy. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  3. The integration of audio−tactile information is modulated by multimodal social interaction with physical contact in infancy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yukari Tanaka

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Interaction between caregivers and infants is multimodal in nature. To react interactively and smoothly to such multimodal signals, infants must integrate all these signals. However, few empirical infant studies have investigated how multimodal social interaction with physical contact facilitates multimodal integration, especially regarding audio − tactile (A-T information. By using electroencephalogram (EEG and event-related potentials (ERPs, the present study investigated how neural processing involved in A-T integration is modulated by tactile interaction. Seven- to 8-months-old infants heard one pseudoword both whilst being tickled (multimodal ‘A-T’ condition, and not being tickled (unimodal ‘A’ condition. Thereafter, their EEG was measured during the perception of the same words. Compared to the A condition, the A-T condition resulted in enhanced ERPs and higher beta-band activity within the left temporal regions, indicating neural processing of A-T integration. Additionally, theta-band activity within the middle frontal region was enhanced, which may reflect enhanced attention to social information. Furthermore, differential ERPs correlated with the degree of engagement in the tickling interaction. We provide neural evidence that the integration of A-T information in infants’ brains is facilitated through tactile interaction with others. Such plastic changes in neural processing may promote harmonious social interaction and effective learning in infancy. Keywords: Electroencephalogram (EEG, Infants, Multisensory integration, Touch interaction

  4. Multimodal cues provide redundant information for bumblebees when the stimulus is visually salient, but facilitate red target detection in a naturalistic background

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corcobado, Guadalupe; Trillo, Alejandro

    2017-01-01

    Our understanding of how floral visitors integrate visual and olfactory cues when seeking food, and how background complexity affects flower detection is limited. Here, we aimed to understand the use of visual and olfactory information for bumblebees (Bombus terrestris terrestris L.) when seeking flowers in a visually complex background. To explore this issue, we first evaluated the effect of flower colour (red and blue), size (8, 16 and 32 mm), scent (presence or absence) and the amount of training on the foraging strategy of bumblebees (accuracy, search time and flight behaviour), considering the visual complexity of our background, to later explore whether experienced bumblebees, previously trained in the presence of scent, can recall and make use of odour information when foraging in the presence of novel visual stimuli carrying a familiar scent. Of all the variables analysed, flower colour had the strongest effect on the foraging strategy. Bumblebees searching for blue flowers were more accurate, flew faster, followed more direct paths between flowers and needed less time to find them, than bumblebees searching for red flowers. In turn, training and the presence of odour helped bees to find inconspicuous (red) flowers. When bees foraged on red flowers, search time increased with flower size; but search time was independent of flower size when bees foraged on blue flowers. Previous experience with floral scent enhances the capacity of detection of a novel colour carrying a familiar scent, probably by elemental association influencing attention. PMID:28898287

  5. The Use of Tactile Sensors and PIV Analysis for Understanding the Bearing Mechanism of Pile Groups.

    Science.gov (United States)

    You, Zhijia; Chen, Yulong

    2018-02-06

    Model tests were carried out in dry silica sand under pile loading and visualizing observation to investigate the behavior of a pile group. The pile group consisted of nine cylindrical model piles of 40 mm in diameter in most tests or three rectangular parallelepiped model piles in the visualizing observation. Pile spacings of 200 mm and 100 mm between pile centers were used in the models. Tactile sensors were installed to measure the pressure distribution in the ground and colored sand layer with particle image velocimetry (PIV) analysis to reveal the ground deformation in addition to strain gauges inside the model piles to investigate the interaction among group piles. The tests results showed that a narrower spacing between piles resulted in a wider affected area of the ground and the interaction was more significant below the tips.

  6. Displaying Sensed Tactile Cues with a Fingertip Haptic Device.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pacchierotti, Claudio; Prattichizzo, Domenico; Kuchenbecker, Katherine J

    2015-01-01

    Telerobotic systems enable humans to explore and manipulate remote environments for applications such as surgery and disaster response, but few such systems provide the operator with cutaneous feedback. This article presents a novel approach to remote cutaneous interaction; our method is compatible with any fingertip tactile sensor and any mechanical tactile display device, and it does not require a position/force or skin deformation model. Instead, it directly maps the sensed stimuli to the best possible input commands for the device's motors using a data set recorded with the tactile sensor inside the device. As a proof of concept, we considered a haptic system composed of a BioTac tactile sensor, in charge of measuring contact deformations, and a custom 3-DoF cutaneous device with a flat contact platform, in charge of applying deformations to the user's fingertip. To validate the proposed approach and discover its inherent tradeoffs, we carried out two remote tactile interaction experiments. The first one evaluated the error between the tactile sensations registered by the BioTac in a remote environment and the sensations created by the cutaneous device for six representative tactile interactions and 27 variations of the display algorithm. The normalized average errors in the best condition were 3.0 percent of the BioTac's full 12-bit scale. The second experiment evaluated human subjects' experiences for the same six remote interactions and eight algorithm variations. The average subjective rating for the best algorithm variation was 8.2 out of 10, where 10 is best.

  7. Crossmodal Recruitment of the Ventral Visual Stream in Congenital Blindness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maurice Ptito

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available We used functional MRI (fMRI to test the hypothesis that blind subjects recruit the ventral visual stream during nonhaptic tactile-form recognition. Congenitally blind and blindfolded sighted control subjects were scanned after they had been trained during four consecutive days to perform a tactile-form recognition task with the tongue display unit (TDU. Both groups learned the task at the same rate. In line with our hypothesis, the fMRI data showed that during nonhaptic shape recognition, blind subjects activated large portions of the ventral visual stream, including the cuneus, precuneus, inferotemporal (IT, cortex, lateral occipital tactile vision area (LOtv, and fusiform gyrus. Control subjects activated area LOtv and precuneus but not cuneus, IT and fusiform gyrus. These results indicate that congenitally blind subjects recruit key regions in the ventral visual pathway during nonhaptic tactile shape discrimination. The activation of LOtv by nonhaptic tactile shape processing in blind and sighted subjects adds further support to the notion that this area subserves an abstract or supramodal representation of shape. Together with our previous findings, our data suggest that the segregation of the efferent projections of the primary visual cortex into a dorsal and ventral visual stream is preserved in individuals blind from birth.

  8. Seeing touch in the somatosensory cortex: a TMS study of the visual perception of touch.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bolognini, Nadia; Rossetti, Angela; Maravita, Angelo; Miniussi, Carlo

    2011-12-01

    Recent studies suggest the existence of a visuo-tactile mirror system, comprising the primary (SI) and secondary (SII) somatosensory cortices, which matches observed touch with felt touch. Here, repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) was used to determine whether SI or SII play a functional role in the visual processing of tactile events. Healthy participants performed a visual discrimination task with tactile stimuli (a finger touching a hand) and a control task (a finger moving without touching). During both tasks, rTMS was applied over either SI or SII, and to the occipital cortex. rTMS over SI selectively reduced subject performance for interpreting whether a contralateral visual tactile stimulus contains a tactile event, whereas SII stimulation impaired visual processing regardless of the tactile component. These findings provide evidence for a multimodal sensory-motor system with mirror properties, where somatic and visual properties of action converge. SI, a cortical area traditionally viewed as modality-specific, is selectively implicated in the visual processing of touch. These results are in line with the existence of a sensory mirror system mediating the embodied simulation concept. Copyright © 2010 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  9. Blocking PirB up-regulates spines and functional synapses to unlock visual cortical plasticity and facilitate recovery from amblyopia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bochner, David N.; Sapp, Richard W.; Adelson, Jaimie D.; Zhang, Siyu; Lee, Hanmi; Djurisic, Maja; Syken, Josh; Dan, Yang; Shatz, Carla J.

    2015-01-01

    During critical periods of development, the brain easily changes in response to environmental stimuli, but this neural plasticity declines by adulthood. By acutely disrupting paired immunoglobulin-like receptor B(PirB) function at specific ages, we show that PirB actively represses neural plasticity throughout life. We disrupted PirB function either by genetically introducing a conditional PirB allele into mice or by minipump infusion of a soluble PirB ectodomain (sPirB) into mouse visual cortex. We found that neural plasticity, as measured by depriving mice of vision in one eye and testing ocular dominance, was enhanced by this treatment both during the critical period and when PirB function was disrupted in adulthood. Acute blockade of PirB triggered the formation of new functional synapses, as indicated by increases in miniature excitatory postsynaptic current (mEPSC) frequency and spine density on dendrites of layer 5 pyramidal neurons. In addition, recovery from amblyopia— the decline in visual acuity and spine density resulting from long-term monocular deprivation— was possible after a 1-week infusion of sPirB after the deprivation period. Thus, neural plasticity in adult visual cortex is actively repressed and can be enhanced by blocking PirB function. PMID:25320232

  10. Synthetic and Bio-Artificial Tactile Sensing: A Review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Chiara Carrozza

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper reviews the state of the art of artificial tactile sensing, with a particular focus on bio-hybrid and fully-biological approaches. To this aim, the study of physiology of the human sense of touch and of the coding mechanisms of tactile information is a significant starting point, which is briefly explored in this review. Then, the progress towards the development of an artificial sense of touch are investigated. Artificial tactile sensing is analysed with respect to the possible approaches to fabricate the outer interface layer: synthetic skin versus bio-artificial skin. With particular respect to the synthetic skin approach, a brief overview is provided on various technologies and transduction principles that can be integrated beneath the skin layer. Then, the main focus moves to approaches characterized by the use of bio-artificial skin as an outer layer of the artificial sensory system. Within this design solution for the skin, bio-hybrid and fully-biological tactile sensing systems are thoroughly presented: while significant results have been reported for the development of tissue engineered skins, the development of mechanotransduction units and their integration is a recent trend that is still lagging behind, therefore requiring research efforts and investments. In the last part of the paper, application domains and perspectives of the reviewed tactile sensing technologies are discussed.

  11. Tactile mouse generating velvet hand illusion on human palm

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nadar Rajaei

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available To enhance virtual reality (VR generated by tactile displays, we have focused on a novel tactile illusion, called the Velvet Hand Illusion (VHI. In VHI, moving two parallel wires back and forth between the two hands leads humans to perceive a velvet-like surface between their hands. In earlier studies, we revealed that the intensity of VHI could be controlled by a ratio (r/D, where r and D are the wire stroke and wire distance, respectively. According to these findings, we investigate in this study whether a common tactile display is able to produce VHI, and whether the ratio can also control VHI intensity. We prepare a dot-matrix display as a tactile display in which moving one line of the display’s pins is considered as a wire pattern. We investigate the VHI intensity with regard to changing the stroke r and the line distance D using paired comparison. Experimental results show that the VHI intensity is increased or decreased by changing r and D. We conclude that VHI can be created by the tactile display, and the intensity of VHI is controlled by changing the ratio of r/D.

  12. EAP application to artificial tactile feel display of virtual reality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Konyo, Masashi; Tadokoro, Satoshi; Takamori, Toshi; Oguro, Keisuke

    2001-07-01

    A tactile feel display device for virtual reality was developed using Nafion-Platinum composite type EAP actuator (known as IPMC or ICPF). Conventional tactile displays can hardly express tactile human feeling of the fine touch of the surface of a cloth, because their mechanisms cannot excite minute distributed stimuli on human skin. We propose a new ciliary device using ICPF actuators. The ICPF has sufficient softness, utilizing the passive material property, that complex control is not required. The low drive voltage is safe enough for the touch of fingers. Its simple operation mechanism allows miniaturization for practical equipments. The developed device was designed with a number of cilia consisting of ICPF actuators, where a cilium is 2 mm wide and 5 mm long. An ICPF membrane is cut into pectination, and only the cilium part is plated and has a function of an actuator. An inclined configuration of the cilia produces variety of stimuli to human skin controlling frequencies. We tried to display both pressure and vibration at the same time using modulated low and high frequencies. The result clearly shows that over 80% of the subjects sensed some special tactile feeling. A comparison with real material samples shows that this display can present a subtle distinction of tactile feeling of cloth, especially like a towel and denim.

  13. Direct tactile manipulation of the flight plan in a modern aircraft cockpit

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Alapetite, Alexandre; Fogh, Rune; Zammit-Mangion, David

    2012-01-01

    An original experimental approach has been chosen, with an incremental progression from a traditional physical cockpit, to a tactile flight simulator reproducing traditional controls, to a prototype navigation display with direct tactile functionality, first located in the traditional low position...

  14. Tactile Sensing for Dexterous Robotic Hands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, Toby B.

    2000-01-01

    Robotic systems will be used as precursors to human exploration to explore the solar system and expand our knowledge of planetary surfaces. Robotic systems will also be used to build habitats and infrastructure required for human presence in space and on other planetary surfaces . Such robots will require a high level of intelligence and automation. The ability to flexibly manipulate their physical environment is one characteristic that makes humans so effective at these building and exploring tasks . The development of a generic autonomous grasp ing capability will greatly enhance the efficiency and ability of robotics to build, maintain and explore. To tele-operate a robot over vast distances of space, with long communication delays, has proven to be troublesome. Having an autonomous grasping capability that can react in real-time to disturbances or adapt to generic objects, without operator intervention, will reduce the probability of mishandled tools and samples and reduce the number of re-grasp attempts due to dropping. One aspect that separates humans from machines is a rich sensor set. We have the ability to feel objects and respond to forces and textures. The development of touch or tactile sensors for use on a robot that emulates human skin and nerves is the basis for this discussion. We will discuss the use of new piezo-electric and resistive materials that have emerged on the market with the intention of developing a touch sensitive sensor. With viable tacti le sensors we will be one step closer to developing an autonomous grasping capability.

  15. [Short-term memory characteristics of vibration intensity tactile perception on human wrist].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hao, Fei; Chen, Li-Juan; Lu, Wei; Song, Ai-Guo

    2014-12-25

    In this study, a recall experiment and a recognition experiment were designed to assess the human wrist's short-term memory characteristics of tactile perception on vibration intensity, by using a novel homemade vibrotactile display device based on the spatiotemporal combination vibration of multiple micro vibration motors as a test device. Based on the obtained experimental data, the short-term memory span, recognition accuracy and reaction time of vibration intensity were analyzed. From the experimental results, some important conclusions can be made: (1) The average short-term memory span of tactile perception on vibration intensity is 3 ± 1 items; (2) The greater difference between two adjacent discrete intensities of vibrotactile stimulation is defined, the better average short-term memory span human wrist gets; (3) There is an obvious difference of the average short-term memory span on vibration intensity between the male and female; (4) The mechanism of information extraction in short-term memory of vibrotactile display is to traverse the scanning process by comparison; (5) The recognition accuracy and reaction time performance of vibrotactile display compares unfavourably with that of visual and auditory. The results from this study are important for designing vibrotactile display coding scheme.

  16. Tactile sensitivity of gloved hands in the cold operation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geng, Q; Kuklane, K; Holmér, I

    1997-11-01

    In this study, tactile sensitivity of gloved hand in the cold operation has been investigated. The relations among physical properties of protective gloves and hand tactile sensitivity and cold protection were also analysed both objectively and subjectively. Subjects with various gloves participated in the experimental study during cold exposure at different ambient temperatures of -12 degrees C and -25 degrees C. Tactual performance was measured using an identification task with various sizes of objects over the percentage of misjudgment. Forearm, hand and finger skin temperatures were also recorded throughout. The experimental data were analysed using analysis of variance (ANOVA) model and the Tukey's multiple range test. The results obtained indicated that the tactual performance was affected both by gloves and by hands/fingers cooling. Effect of object size on the tactile discrimination was significant and the misjudgment increased when similar sizes of objects were identified, especially at -25 degrees C.

  17. Performance of Brain-computer Interfacing based on tactile selective sensation and motor imagery

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Yao, Lin; Sheng, Xinjun; Mrachacz-Kersting, Natalie

    2018-01-01

    We proposed a multi-class tactile brain-computer interface that utilizes stimulus-induced oscillatory dynamics. It was hypothesized that somatosensory attention can modulate tactile induced oscillation changes, which can decode different sensation attention tasks. Subjects performed four tactile...

  18. Nanowire FET Based Neural Element for Robotic Tactile Sensing Skin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    William Taube Navaraj

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents novel Neural Nanowire Field Effect Transistors (υ-NWFETs based hardware-implementable neural network (HNN approach for tactile data processing in electronic skin (e-skin. The viability of Si nanowires (NWs as the active material for υ-NWFETs in HNN is explored through modeling and demonstrated by fabricating the first device. Using υ-NWFETs to realize HNNs is an interesting approach as by printing NWs on large area flexible substrates it will be possible to develop a bendable tactile skin with distributed neural elements (for local data processing, as in biological skin in the backplane. The modeling and simulation of υ-NWFET based devices show that the overlapping areas between individual gates and the floating gate determines the initial synaptic weights of the neural network - thus validating the working of υ-NWFETs as the building block for HNN. The simulation has been further extended to υ-NWFET based circuits and neuronal computation system and this has been validated by interfacing it with a transparent tactile skin prototype (comprising of 6 × 6 ITO based capacitive tactile sensors array integrated on the palm of a 3D printed robotic hand. In this regard, a tactile data coding system is presented to detect touch gesture and the direction of touch. Following these simulation studies, a four-gated υ-NWFET is fabricated with Pt/Ti metal stack for gates, source and drain, Ni floating gate, and Al2O3 high-k dielectric layer. The current-voltage characteristics of fabricated υ-NWFET devices confirm the dependence of turn-off voltages on the (synaptic weight of each gate. The presented υ-NWFET approach is promising for a neuro-robotic tactile sensory system with distributed computing as well as numerous futuristic applications such as prosthetics, and electroceuticals.

  19. Object texture recognition by dynamic tactile sensing using active exploration

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Drimus, Alin; Børlum Petersen, Mikkel; Bilberg, Arne

    with a dynamic tactile transducer based on polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) piezoelectric film. Different test surfaces are actively explored and the signal from the sensor is used for feature extraction, which is subsequently used for classification. A comparison between the significance of different extracted......For both humans and robots, tactile sensing is important for interaction with the environment: it is the core sensing used for exploration and manipulation of objects. In this paper, we present a method for determining object texture by active exploration with a robotic fingertip equipped...

  20. Left hand tactile agnosia after posterior callosal lesion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balsamo, Maddalena; Trojano, Luigi; Giamundo, Arcangelo; Grossi, Dario

    2008-09-01

    We report a patient with a hemorrhagic lesion encroaching upon the posterior third of the corpus callosum but sparing the splenium. She showed marked difficulties in recognizing objects and shapes perceived through her left hand, while she could appreciate elementary sensorial features of items tactually presented to the same hand flawlessly. This picture, corresponding to classical descriptions of unilateral associative tactile agnosia, was associated with finger agnosia of the left hand. This very unusual case report can be interpreted as an instance of disconnection syndrome, and allows a discussion of mechanisms involved in tactile object recognition.

  1. Learning Touch Preferences with a Tactile Robot Using Dopamine Modulated STDP in a Model of Insular Cortex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ting-Shuo eChou

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Neurorobots enable researchers to study how behaviors are produced by neural mechanisms in an uncertain, noisy, real-world environment. To investigate how the somatosensory system processes noisy, real-world touch inputs, we introduce a neurorobot called CARL-SJR, which has a full-body tactile sensory area. The design of CARL-SJR is such that it encourages people to communicate with it through gentle touch. CARL-SJR provides feedback to users by displaying bright colors on its surface. In the present study, we show that CARL-SJR is capable of learning associations between conditioned stimuli (CS; a color pattern on its surface and unconditioned stimuli (US; a preferred touch pattern by applying a spiking neural network (SNN with neurobiologically inspired plasticity. Specifically, we modeled the primary somatosensory cortex, prefrontal cortex, striatum, and the insular cortex, which is important for hedonic touch, to process noisy data generated directly from CARL-SJR’s tactile sensory area. To facilitate learning, we applied dopamine-modulated Spike Timing Dependent Plasticity (STDP to our simulated prefrontal cortex, striatum and insular cortex. To cope with noisy, varying inputs, the SNN was tuned to produce traveling waves of activity that carried spatiotemporal information. Despite the noisy tactile sensors, spike trains, and variations in subject hand swipes, the learning was quite robust. Further, the plasticity (i.e., STDP in primary somatosensory cortex and insular cortex in the incremental pathway of dopaminergic reward system allowed us to control CARL-SJR’s preference for touch direction without heavily pre-processed inputs. The emerged behaviors we found in this model match animal’s behaviors wherein they prefer touch in particular areas and directions. Thus, the results in this paper could serve as an explanation on the underlying neural mechanisms for developing tactile preferences and hedonic touch.

  2. Partial recovery of visual-spatial remapping of touch after restoring vision in a congenitally blind man.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ley, Pia; Bottari, Davide; Shenoy, Bhamy H; Kekunnaya, Ramesh; Röder, Brigitte

    2013-05-01

    In an initial processing step, sensory events are encoded in modality specific representations in the brain but seem to be automatically remapped into a supra-modal, presumably visual-external frame of reference. To test whether there is a sensitive phase in the first years of life during which visual input is crucial for the acquisition of this remapping process, we tested a single case of a congenitally blind man whose sight was restored after the age of two years. HS performed a tactile temporal order judgment task (TOJ) which required judging the temporal order of two tactile stimuli, one presented to each index finger. In addition, a visual-tactile cross-modal congruency task was run, in which spatially congruent and spatially incongruent visual distractor stimuli were presented together with tactile stimuli. The tactile stimuli had to be localized. Both tasks were performed with an uncrossed and a crossed hand posture. Similar to congenitally blind individuals HS did not show a crossing effect in the tactile TOJ task suggesting an anatomical rather than visual-external coding of touch. In the visual-tactile task, however, external remapping of touch was observed though incomplete compared to sighted controls. These data support the hypothesis of a sensitive phase for the acquisition of an automatic use of visual-spatial representations for coding tactile input. Nonetheless, these representations seem to be acquired to some extent after the end of congenital blindness but seem to be recruited only in the context of visual stimuli and are used with a reduced efficiency. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Fluid-structure interaction-based biomechanical perception model for tactile sensing.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zheng Wang

    Full Text Available The reproduced tactile sensation of haptic interfaces usually selectively reproduces a certain object attribute, such as the object's material reflected by vibration and its surface shape by a pneumatic nozzle array. Tactile biomechanics investigates the relation between responses to an external load stimulus and tactile perception and guides the design of haptic interface devices via a tactile mechanism. Focusing on the pneumatic haptic interface, we established a fluid-structure interaction-based biomechanical model of responses to static and dynamic loads and conducted numerical simulation and experiments. This model provides a theoretical basis for designing haptic interfaces and reproducing tactile textures.

  4. Post-marathon wearing of Masai Barefoot Technology shoes facilitates recovery from race-induced fatigue: an evaluation utilizing a visual analog scale

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nakagawa K

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Kento Nakagawa, Takashi Obu, Kazuyuki KanosueFaculty of Sport Sciences, Waseda University, Tokorozawa, Saitama, Japan Purpose: To investigate the potential benefit of post-race wearing of unstable shoes (Masai Barefoot Technology [MBT] on recovery from marathon race–induced fatigue.Patients and methods: Forty-five runners who participated in a full marathon race were divided into three groups: 1 MBT shoes, 2 trail running shoes, and 3 control (CON. Participants ran a full marathon with their own running shoes, and then put on the assigned shoes immediately after the race. They continued to wear the assigned shoes for the ensuing 3 days. The CON group wore their usual shoes. Estimates of post-race fatigue were made by the participants on questionnaires that utilized a visual analog scale. Estimates were made just after the race, as well as for the next 3 days.Results: The subjective fatigue of the MBT group was lower than that of the CON (P<0.05 or trail running shoe groups (P<0.05 on day 3.Conclusion: MBT shoe intervention can promote recovery from the fatigue induced by running a full marathon.Keywords: footwear, VAS, full marathon

  5. The effect of vertical and horizontal symmetry on memory for tactile patterns in late blind individuals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cattaneo, Zaira; Vecchi, Tomaso; Fantino, Micaela; Herbert, Andrew M; Merabet, Lotfi B

    2013-02-01

    Visual stimuli that exhibit vertical symmetry are easier to remember than stimuli symmetric along other axes, an advantage that extends to the haptic modality as well. Critically, the vertical symmetry memory advantage has not been found in early blind individuals, despite their overall superior memory, as compared with sighted individuals, and the presence of an overall advantage for identifying symmetric over asymmetric patterns. The absence of the vertical axis memory advantage in the early blind may depend on their total lack of visual experience or on the effect of prolonged visual deprivation. To disentangle this issue, in this study, we measured the ability of late blind individuals to remember tactile spatial patterns that were either vertically or horizontally symmetric or asymmetric. Late blind participants showed better memory performance for symmetric patterns. An additional advantage for the vertical axis of symmetry over the horizontal one was reported, but only for patterns presented in the frontal plane. In the horizontal plane, no difference was observed between vertical and horizontal symmetric patterns, due to the latter being recalled particularly well. These results are discussed in terms of the influence of the spatial reference frame adopted during exploration. Overall, our data suggest that prior visual experience is sufficient to drive the vertical symmetry memory advantage, at least when an external reference frame based on geocentric cues (i.e., gravity) is adopted.

  6. About Face: Evaluating and Managing Tactile Impairment at the Time of Autism Diagnosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Louisa M. T. Silva

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Evaluation for sensory impairment is a routine part of autism diagnosis. Sensory impairment of hearing, vision, or touch results in developmental delay and must be addressed before delay can resolve. Recent studies confirm that tactile impairment is present in autism and can be effectively treated with a tactile stimulation protocol. The research suggests a change in management at the time of autism diagnosis to include evaluation and treatment of tactile impairment. Here we validate screening and management tool for tactile impairment, the Autism Touch and Self-Regulation Checklist, in 404 typical and autistic preschool children. The tool assesses tactile impairment by location and severity. Autistic children were distinguished by mixed pain and numbness on multiple areas including the face and mouth (F=412.1 (1,402;p<.000. Oral-facial tactile impairment interferes with the tactile stimulus to orienting. We hypothesized that oral-facial tactile impairment and difficulty orienting are predictive of ASD and that severity of tactile impairment is predictive of severity of ASD. Questions evaluating oral-facial and orienting responses correctly predicted 91% of the autism group. Severity of tactile impairment correctly predicted 81% of mild versus severe ASD. Results underscore the importance of evaluating and treating tactile impairment at the time of autism diagnosis.

  7. The TaSST: Tactile Sleeve for Social Touch

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huisman, G.; Darriba Frederiks, A.; van Dijk, B.; Heylen, D.; Kröse, B.

    2013-01-01

    In this paper we outline the design process of the TaSST (Tactile Sleeve for Social Touch), a touch-sensitive vibrotactile arm sleeve. The TaSST was designed to enable two people to communicate different types of touch over a distance. The touch-sensitive surface of the sleeve consists of a grid of

  8. The TaSST: Tactile sleeve for social touch

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huisman, Gijs; Darriba Frederiks, Aduén; van Dijk, Elisabeth M.A.G.; Heylen, Dirk K.J.; Krose, Ben

    In this paper we outline the design process of the TaSST (Tactile Sleeve for Social Touch), a touch-sensitive vibrotactile arm sleeve. The TaSST was designed to enable two people to communicate different types of touch over a distance. The touch-sensitive surface of the sleeve consists of a grid of

  9. The TaSST - Tactile Sleeve for Social Touch

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huisman, Gijs; Darriba Frederiks, Aduén; Van Dijk, Betsy; Heylen, Dirk

    2013-01-01

    In this paper we outline the design process of TaSST (Tactile Sleeve for Social Touch), a touch-sensitive vibrotactile arm sleeve. The TaSST was designed to enable two people to communicate different types of touches over a distance. The touch-sensitive surface of the sleeve consists of a grid of

  10. Flexible PZT Thin Film Tactile Sensor for Biomedical Monitoring

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wen-Jong Wu

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents the development of tactile sensors using the sol-gel process to deposit a PZT thin-film from 250 nm to 1 μm on a flexible stainless steel substrate. The PZT thin-film tactile sensor can be used to measure human pulses from several areas, including carotid, brachial, finger, ankle, radial artery, and the apical region. Flexible PZT tactile sensors can overcome the diverse topology of various human regions and sense the corresponding signals from human bodies. The measured arterial pulse waveform can be used to diagnose hypertension and cardiac failure in patients. The proposed sensors have several advantages, such as flexibility, reliability, high strain, low cost, simple fabrication, and low temperature processing. The PZT thin-film deposition process includes a pyrolysis process at 150 °C/500 °C for 10/5 min, followed by an annealing process at 650 °C for 10 min. Finally, the consistent pulse wave velocity (PWV was demonstrated based on human pulse measurements from apical to radial, brachial to radial, and radial to ankle. It is characterized that the sensitivity of our PZT-based tactile sensor was approximately 0.798 mV/g.

  11. Tactile short-term memory in sensory-deprived individuals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Papagno, Costanza; Minniti, Giovanna; Mattavelli, Giulia C; Mantovan, Lara; Cecchetto, Carlo

    2017-02-01

    To verify whether loosing a sense or two has consequences on a spared sensory modality, namely touch, and whether these consequences depend on practice or are biologically determined, we investigated 13 deafblind participants, 16 deaf participants, 15 blind participants, and 13 matched normally sighted and hearing controls on a tactile short-term memory task, using checkerboard matrices of increasing length in which half of the squares were made up of a rough texture and half of a smooth one. Time of execution of a fixed matrix, number of correctly reproduced matrices, largest matrix correctly reproduced and tactile span were recorded. The three groups of sensory-deprived individuals did not differ in any measure, while blind and deaf participants outscored controls in all parameters except time of execution; the difference approached significance for deafblind people compared to controls only in one measure, namely correctly reproduced matrices. In blind and deafblind participants, performance negatively correlated with age of Braille acquisition, the older being the subject when acquiring Braille, the lower the performance, suggesting that practice plays a role. However, the fact that deaf participants, who did not share tactile experience, performed similarly to blind participants and significantly better than controls highlights that practice cannot be the only contribution to better tactile memory.

  12. Bilateral Symmetry of Distortions of Tactile Size Perception.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Longo, Matthew R; Ghosh, Arko; Yahya, Tasneem

    2015-01-01

    The perceived distance between touches on the limbs is generally bigger for distances oriented across the width of the limb than for distances oriented along the length of the limb. The present study aimed to investigate the coherence of such distortions of tactile size perception across different skin surfaces. We investigated distortions of tactile size perception on the dorsal and palmar surfaces of both the left and right hands as well as the forehead. Participants judged which of two tactile distances felt larger. One distance was aligned with the proximodistal axis (along the body), the other with the mediolateral axis (across the body). Clear distortions were found on all five skin surfaces, with stimuli oriented across the width of the body being perceived as farther apart than those oriented along the length of the body. Consistent with previous results, distortions were smaller on the palmar than on the dorsal hand surface. Distortion on the forehead was intermediate between the dorsal and palmar surfaces. There were clear correlations between distortion on the left and right hands, for both the dorsal and palmar skin surfaces. In contrast, within each hand, there was no significant correlation between the two skin surfaces. Distortion on the forehead was not significantly correlated with that on any of the other skin surfaces. These results provide evidence for bilaterally symmetric representations underlying tactile size perception. © The Author(s) 2015.

  13. Reproducibility of Tactile Assessments for Children with Unilateral Cerebral Palsy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Auld, Megan Louise; Ware, Robert S.; Boyd, Roslyn Nancy; Moseley, G. Lorimer; Johnston, Leanne Marie

    2012-01-01

    A systematic review identified tactile assessments used in children with cerebral palsy (CP), but their reproducibility is unknown. Sixteen children with unilateral CP and 31 typically developing children (TDC) were assessed 2-4 weeks apart. Test-retest percent agreements within one point for children with unilateral CP (and TDC) were…

  14. Towards a standard on evaluation of tactile/haptic interactions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sinclair, I.; Carter, J.; Kassner, S.; Erp, J.B.F. van; Weber, G.; Elliott, L.; Andrew, I.

    2012-01-01

    Tactile and haptic interaction is becoming increasingly important; ergonomic standards can ensure that systems are designed with sufficient concern for ergonomics and interoperability. ISO (through working group TC159/SC4/WG9) is developing international standards in this subject area, dual-tracked

  15. Flexible PZT thin film tactile sensor for biomedical monitoring.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tseng, Hong-Jie; Tian, Wei-Cheng; Wu, Wen-Jong

    2013-04-25

    This paper presents the development of tactile sensors using the sol-gel process to deposit a PZT thin-film from 250 nm to 1 μm on a flexible stainless steel substrate. The PZT thin-film tactile sensor can be used to measure human pulses from several areas, including carotid, brachial, finger, ankle, radial artery, and the apical region. Flexible PZT tactile sensors can overcome the diverse topology of various human regions and sense the corresponding signals from human bodies. The measured arterial pulse waveform can be used to diagnose hypertension and cardiac failure in patients. The proposed sensors have several advantages, such as flexibility, reliability, high strain, low cost, simple fabrication, and low temperature processing. The PZT thin-film deposition process includes a pyrolysis process at 150 °C/500 °C for 10/5 min, followed by an annealing process at 650 °C for 10 min. Finally, the consistent pulse wave velocity (PWV) was demonstrated based on human pulse measurements from apical to radial, brachial to radial, and radial to ankle. It is characterized that the sensitivity of our PZT-based tactile sensor was approximately 0.798 mV/g.

  16. Development of flexible tactile sensors for hexapod robots

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Drimus, Alin; Børlum-Petersen, Mikkel; Jouffroy, Jerome

    2013-01-01

    This paper describes the development of flexible based tactile array sensors based on piezoresistive rubber for use in the leg tips of hexapod robotics. The sensors are composed of a sandwich similar structure, with a piezoresistive rubber used as the middle layer and flexPCB electrodes...

  17. Description of a papillate tactile organ in the Typhlopidae

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    There are a variet)-' of tactile receptors located within snake skin, including free nerve endings, terminal receptors resem- bling Merkel cells, and lamellated receptors (Von DUring &. Miller 1979; Young 1997). Many of these receptors produce a deformation in the overlying ~-layer of the epidermis, but are not evident when ...

  18. Durable Tactile Glove for Human or Robot Hand

    Science.gov (United States)

    Butzer, Melissa; Diftler, Myron A.; Huber, Eric

    2010-01-01

    A glove containing force sensors has been built as a prototype of tactile sensor arrays to be worn on human hands and anthropomorphic robot hands. The force sensors of this glove are mounted inside, in protective pockets; as a result of this and other design features, the present glove is more durable than earlier models.

  19. A systems based experimental approach to tactile friction

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Masen, Marc Arthur

    2011-01-01

    This work focuses on the friction in contacts where the human finger pad is one of the interacting surfaces. This ‘tactile friction’ requires a full understanding of the contact mechanics and the behaviour of human skin. The coefficient of friction cannot be considered as a property of the skin

  20. Hybrid-Actuated Finger Prosthesis with Tactile Sensing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cheng Yee Low

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Finger prostheses are devices developed to emulate the functionality of natural human fingers. On top of their aesthetic appearance in terms of shape, size and colour, such biomimetic devices require a high level of dexterity. They must be capable of gripping an object, and even manipulating it in the hand. This paper presents a biomimetic robotic finger actuated by a hybrid mechanism and integrated with a tactile sensor. The hybrid actuation mechanism comprises a DC micromotor and a Shape Memory Alloy (SMA wire. A customized test rig has been developed to measure the force and stroke produced by the SMA wire. In parallel with the actuator development, experimental investigations have been conducted on Quantum Tunnelling Composite (QTC and Pressure Conductive Rubber (PCR towards the development of a tactile sensor for the finger. The viability of using these materials for tactile sensing has been determined. Such a hybrid actuation approach aided with tactile sensing capability enables a finger design as an integral part of a prosthetic hand for applications up to the transradial amputation level.

  1. Vision in avian emberizid foragers: maximizing both binocular vision and fronto-lateral visual acuity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, Bret A; Pita, Diana; Tyrrell, Luke P; Fernández-Juricic, Esteban

    2015-05-01

    Avian species vary in their visual system configuration, but previous studies have often compared single visual traits between two to three distantly related species. However, birds use different visual dimensions that cannot be maximized simultaneously to meet different perceptual demands, potentially leading to trade-offs between visual traits. We studied the degree of inter-specific variation in multiple visual traits related to foraging and anti-predator behaviors in nine species of closely related emberizid sparrows, controlling for phylogenetic effects. Emberizid sparrows maximize binocular vision, even seeing their bill tips in some eye positions, which may enhance the detection of prey and facilitate food handling. Sparrows have a single retinal center of acute vision (i.e. fovea) projecting fronto-laterally (but not into the binocular field). The foveal projection close to the edge of the binocular field may shorten the time to gather and process both monocular and binocular visual information from the foraging substrate. Contrary to previous work, we found that species with larger visual fields had higher visual acuity, which may compensate for larger blind spots (i.e. pectens) above the center of acute vision, enhancing predator detection. Finally, species with a steeper change in ganglion cell density across the retina had higher eye movement amplitude, probably due to a more pronounced reduction in visual resolution away from the fovea, which would need to be moved around more frequently. The visual configuration of emberizid passive prey foragers is substantially different from that of previously studied avian groups (e.g. sit-and-wait and tactile foragers). © 2015. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  2. Crossmodal recruitment of the ventral visual stream in congenital blindness

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ptito, Maurice; Matteau, Isabelle; Zhi Wang, Arthur

    2012-01-01

    We used functional MRI (fMRI) to test the hypothesis that blind subjects recruit the ventral visual stream during nonhaptic tactile-form recognition. Congenitally blind and blindfolded sighted control subjects were scanned after they had been trained during four consecutive days to perform......, inferotemporal (IT), cortex, lateral occipital tactile vision area (LOtv), and fusiform gyrus. Control subjects activated area LOtv and precuneus but not cuneus, IT and fusiform gyrus. These results indicate that congenitally blind subjects recruit key regions in the ventral visual pathway during nonhaptic...

  3. Scalable fabric tactile sensor arrays for soft bodies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Day, Nathan; Penaloza, Jimmy; Santos, Veronica J.; Killpack, Marc D.

    2018-06-01

    Soft robots have the potential to transform the way robots interact with their environment. This is due to their low inertia and inherent ability to more safely interact with the world without damaging themselves or the people around them. However, existing sensing for soft robots has at least partially limited their ability to control interactions with their environment. Tactile sensors could enable soft robots to sense interaction, but most tactile sensors are made from rigid substrates and are not well suited to applications for soft robots which can deform. In addition, the benefit of being able to cheaply manufacture soft robots may be lost if the tactile sensors that cover them are expensive and their resolution does not scale well for manufacturability. This paper discusses the development of a method to make affordable, high-resolution, tactile sensor arrays (manufactured in rows and columns) that can be used for sensorizing soft robots and other soft bodies. However, the construction results in a sensor array that exhibits significant amounts of cross-talk when two taxels in the same row are compressed. Using the same fabric-based tactile sensor array construction design, two different methods for cross-talk compensation are presented. The first uses a mathematical model to calculate a change in resistance of each taxel directly. The second method introduces additional simple circuit components that enable us to isolate each taxel electrically and relate voltage to force directly. Fabric sensor arrays are demonstrated for two different soft-bodied applications: an inflatable single link robot and a human wrist.

  4. Facilitating Transfers

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kjær, Poul F.

    to specific logics of temporalisation and spatial expansion of a diverse set of social processes in relation to, for example, the economy, politics, science and the mass media. On this background, the paper will more concretely develop a conceptual framework for classifying different contextual orders...... that the essential functional and normative purpose of regulatory governance is to facilitate, stabilise and justify the transfer of condensed social components (such as economic capital and products, political decisions, legal judgements, religious beliefs and scientific knowledge) from one social contexts...

  5. Visualizing Series

    Science.gov (United States)

    Unal, Hasan

    2008-01-01

    The importance of visualisation and multiple representations in mathematics has been stressed, especially in a context of problem solving. Hanna and Sidoli comment that "Diagrams and other visual representations have long been welcomed as heuristic accompaniments to proof, where they not only facilitate the understanding of theorems and their…

  6. Merkel disc is a serotonergic synapse in the epidermis for transmitting tactile signals in mammals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chang, Weipang; Kanda, Hirosato; Ikeda, Ryo; Ling, Jennifer; DeBerry, Jennifer J; Gu, Jianguo G

    2016-09-13

    The evolution of sensory systems has let mammals develop complicated tactile end organs to enable sophisticated sensory tasks, including social interaction, environmental exploration, and tactile discrimination. The Merkel disc, a main type of tactile end organ consisting of Merkel cells (MCs) and Aβ-afferent endings, are highly abundant in fingertips, touch domes, and whisker hair follicles of mammals. The Merkel disc has high tactile acuity for an object's physical features, such as texture, shape, and edges. Mechanisms underlying the tactile function of Merkel discs are obscured as to how MCs transmit tactile signals to Aβ-afferent endings leading to tactile sensations. Using mouse whisker hair follicles, we show herein that tactile stimuli are transduced by MCs into excitatory signals that trigger vesicular serotonin release from MCs. We identify that both ionotropic and metabotropic 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT) receptors are expressed on whisker Aβ-afferent endings and that their activation by serotonin released from MCs initiates Aβ-afferent impulses. Moreover, we demonstrate that these ionotropic and metabotropic 5-HT receptors have a synergistic effect that is critical to both electrophysiological and behavioral tactile responses. These findings elucidate that the Merkel disc is a unique serotonergic synapse located in the epidermis and plays a key role in tactile transmission. The epidermal serotonergic synapse may have important clinical implications in sensory dysfunctions, such as the loss of tactile sensitivity and tactile allodynia seen in patients who have diabetes, inflammatory diseases, and undergo chemotherapy. It may also have implications in the exaggerated tactile sensations induced by recreational drugs that act on serotoninergic synapses.

  7. Facilitating participation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Skøtt, Bo

    2018-01-01

    the resulting need for a redefinition of library competence. In doing this, I primarily address the first two questions from Chapter 1 and how they relate to the public’s informal, leisure-time activities in a networked society. In particular, I focus on the skills of reflexive self-perception and informed...... opinion formation. Further, I point out the significance which these informal leisure-time activities have for public library staff’s cultural dissemination skills. In this way, I take on the question of the skills required for facilitating the learning of a participatory public (cf. Chapter 1......), exemplifying with the competence required of library staff. My discussion will proceed by way of a literature review. In the next section, I shall explain how and what sources were chosen and section three and four present the theoretical framework and how the applied theories are related. In the fifth section...

  8. Facilitating Transfers

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kjær, Poul F.

    2018-01-01

    Departing from the paradox that globalisation has implied an increase, rather than a decrease, in contextual diversity, this paper re-assesses the function, normative purpose and location of Regulatory Governance Frameworks in world society. Drawing on insights from sociology of law and world...... society studies, the argument advanced is that Regulatory Governance Frameworks are oriented towards facilitating transfers of condensed social components, such as economic capital and products, legal acts, political decisions and scientific knowledge, from one legally-constituted normative order, i.......e. contextual setting, to another. Against this background, it is suggested that Regulatory Governance Frameworks can be understood as schemes which act as ‘rites of passage’ aimed at providing legal stabilisation to social processes characterised by liminality, i.e ambiguity, hybridity and in-betweenness....

  9. Flexible Tactile Sensing Based on Piezoresistive Composites: A Review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stassi, Stefano; Cauda, Valentina; Canavese, Giancarlo; Pirri, Candido Fabrizio

    2014-01-01

    The large expansion of the robotic field in the last decades has created a growing interest in the research and development of tactile sensing solutions for robot hand and body integration. Piezoresistive composites are one of the most widely employed materials for this purpose, combining simple and low cost preparation with high flexibility and conformability to surfaces, low power consumption, and the use of simple read-out electronics. This work provides a review on the different type of composite materials, classified according to the conduction mechanism and analyzing the physics behind it. In particular piezoresistors, strain gauges, percolative and quantum tunnelling devices are reviewed here, with a perspective overview on the most used filler types and polymeric matrices. A description of the state-of-the-art of the tactile sensor solutions from the point of view of the architecture, the design and the performance is also reviewed, with a perspective outlook on the main promising applications. PMID:24638126

  10. High Resolution Tactile Sensors for Curved Robotic Fingertips

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Drimus, Alin; Jankovics, Vince; Gorsic, Matija

    2014-01-01

    Tactile sensing is a key element for various animals that interact with the environment and surrounding objects. Touch provides information about contact forces, torques and pressure distribution and by the means of exploration it provides object properties such as geometry, stiffness and texture...... trivial to obtain, dealing with limited accuracy, occlusions and calibration problems. In terms of sensors for static stimuli, such as pressure, there are a range of technologies that can be used to manufacture transducers with various results[5].......Tactile sensing is a key element for various animals that interact with the environment and surrounding objects. Touch provides information about contact forces, torques and pressure distribution and by the means of exploration it provides object properties such as geometry, stiffness and texture[5...

  11. A Magnetoresistive Tactile Sensor for Harsh Environment Applications

    KAUST Repository

    Alfadhel, Ahmed; Khan, Mohammed Zahed Mustafa; Cardoso, Susana; Leitao, Diana; Kosel, Jü rgen

    2016-01-01

    A magnetoresistive tactile sensor is reported, which is capable of working in high temperatures up to 140 °C. Hair-like bioinspired structures, known as cilia, made out of permanent magnetic nanocomposite material on top of spin-valve giant magnetoresistive (GMR) sensors are used for tactile sensing at high temperatures. The magnetic nanocomposite, consisting of iron nanowires incorporated into the polymer polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS), is very flexible, biocompatible, has high remanence, and is also resilient to antagonistic sensing ambient. When the cilia come in contact with a surface, they deflect in compliance with the surface topology. This yields a change of the GMR sensor signal, enabling the detection of extremely fine features. The spin-valve is covered with a passivation layer, which enables adequate performance in spite of harsh environmental conditions, as demonstrated in this paper for high temperature.

  12. Psychophysical evaluation of a variable friction tactile interface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Samur, Evren; Colgate, J. Edward; Peshkin, Michael A.

    2009-02-01

    This study explores the haptic rendering capabilities of a variable friction tactile interface through psychophysical experiments. In order to obtain a deeper understanding of the sensory resolution associated with the Tactile Pattern Display (TPaD), friction discrimination experiments are conducted. During the experiments, subjects are asked to explore the glass surface of the TPaD using their bare index fingers, to feel the friction on the surface, and to compare the slipperiness of two stimuli, displayed in sequential order. The fingertip position data is collected by an infrared frame and normal and translational forces applied by the finger are measured by force sensors attached to the TPaD. The recorded data is used to calculate the coefficient of friction between the fingertip and the TPaD. The experiments determine the just noticeable difference (JND) of friction coefficient for humans interacting with the TPaD.

  13. When touch matters: an affective tactile intervention for older adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mammarella, Nicola; Fairfield, Beth; Di Domenico, Alberto

    2012-10-01

    Our goal was to test the hypothesis that positive tactile experiences can lead to an improvement in cognitive, emotional skills and perceived quality of life in a group of healthy community-dwelling older adults. During a 10-week period, older adults completed a series of activities that required manipulating either a piece of velvet, a piece of canvas or velcro. Only older adults who worked with velvet showed an increase in cognitive and emotional skills, and the perceived quality of life. Our study is one of the first to show that positive tactile experiences might have a beneficial effect on the psychological well-being of healthy community-dwelling older adults across different domains. © 2012 Japan Geriatrics Society.

  14. A flexible capacitive tactile sensing array with floating electrodes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cheng, M-Y; Huang, X-H; Ma, C-W; Yang, Y-J

    2009-01-01

    In this work, we present the development of a capacitive tactile sensing array realized by using MEMS fabrication techniques and flexible printed circuit board (FPCB) technologies. The sensing array, which consists of two micromachined polydimethlysiloxane (PDMS) structures and a FPCB, will be used as the artificial skin for robot applications. Each capacitive sensing element comprises two sensing electrodes and a common floating electrode. The sensing electrodes and the metal interconnect for signal scanning are implemented on the FPCB, while the floating electrode is patterned on one of the PDMS structures. This special design can effectively reduce the complexity of the device structure and thus makes the device highly manufacturable. The characteristics of the devices with different dimensions are measured and discussed. The corresponding scanning circuits are also designed and implemented. The tactile images induced by the PMMA stamps of different shapes are also successfully captured by a fabricated 8 × 8 array

  15. 3D capacitive tactile sensor using DRIE micromachining

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chuang, Chiehtang; Chen, Rongshun

    2005-07-01

    This paper presents a three dimensional micro capacitive tactile sensor that can detect normal and shear forces which is fabricated using deep reactive ion etching (DRIE) bulk silicon micromachining. The tactile sensor consists of a force transmission plate, a symmetric suspension system, and comb electrodes. The sensing character is based on the changes of capacitance between coplanar sense electrodes. High sensitivity is achieved by using the high aspect ratio interdigital electrodes with narrow comb gaps and large overlap areas. The symmetric suspension mechanism of this sensor can easily solve the coupling problem of measurement and increase the stability of the structure. In this paper, the sensor structure is designed, the capacitance variation of the proposed device is theoretically analyzed, and the finite element analysis of mechanical behavior of the structures is performed.

  16. A Magnetoresistive Tactile Sensor for Harsh Environment Applications

    KAUST Repository

    Alfadhel, Ahmed

    2016-05-07

    A magnetoresistive tactile sensor is reported, which is capable of working in high temperatures up to 140 °C. Hair-like bioinspired structures, known as cilia, made out of permanent magnetic nanocomposite material on top of spin-valve giant magnetoresistive (GMR) sensors are used for tactile sensing at high temperatures. The magnetic nanocomposite, consisting of iron nanowires incorporated into the polymer polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS), is very flexible, biocompatible, has high remanence, and is also resilient to antagonistic sensing ambient. When the cilia come in contact with a surface, they deflect in compliance with the surface topology. This yields a change of the GMR sensor signal, enabling the detection of extremely fine features. The spin-valve is covered with a passivation layer, which enables adequate performance in spite of harsh environmental conditions, as demonstrated in this paper for high temperature.

  17. Three Realizations and Comparison of Hardware for Piezoresistive Tactile Sensors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vidal-Verdú, Fernando; Oballe-Peinado, Óscar; Sánchez-Durán, José A.; Castellanos-Ramos, Julián; Navas-González, Rafael

    2011-01-01

    Tactile sensors are basically arrays of force sensors that are intended to emulate the skin in applications such as assistive robotics. Local electronics are usually implemented to reduce errors and interference caused by long wires. Realizations based on standard microcontrollers, Programmable Systems on Chip (PSoCs) and Field Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGAs) have been proposed by the authors for the case of piezoresistive tactile sensors. The solution employing FPGAs is especially relevant since their performance is closer to that of Application Specific Integrated Circuits (ASICs) than that of the other devices. This paper presents an implementation of such an idea for a specific sensor. For the purpose of comparison, the circuitry based on the other devices is also made for the same sensor. This paper discusses the implementation issues, provides details regarding the design of the hardware based on the three devices and compares them. PMID:22163797

  18. A Magnetoresistive Tactile Sensor for Harsh Environment Applications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ahmed Alfadhel

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available A magnetoresistive tactile sensor is reported, which is capable of working in high temperatures up to 140 °C. Hair-like bioinspired structures, known as cilia, made out of permanent magnetic nanocomposite material on top of spin-valve giant magnetoresistive (GMR sensors are used for tactile sensing at high temperatures. The magnetic nanocomposite, consisting of iron nanowires incorporated into the polymer polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS, is very flexible, biocompatible, has high remanence, and is also resilient to antagonistic sensing ambient. When the cilia come in contact with a surface, they deflect in compliance with the surface topology. This yields a change of the GMR sensor signal, enabling the detection of extremely fine features. The spin-valve is covered with a passivation layer, which enables adequate performance in spite of harsh environmental conditions, as demonstrated in this paper for high temperature.

  19. Flow of cortical activity underlying a tactile decision in mice

    OpenAIRE

    Guo, Zengcai V.; Li, Nuo; Huber, Daniel; Ophir, Eran; Gutnisky, Diego; Ting, Jonathan T.; Feng, Guoping; Svoboda, Karel

    2013-01-01

    Perceptual decisions involve distributed cortical activity. Does information flow sequentially from one cortical area to another, or do networks of interconnected areas contribute at the same time? Here we delineate when and how activity in specific areas drives a whisker-based decision in mice. A short-term memory component temporally separated tactile “sensation” and “action” (licking). Using optogenetic inhibition (spatial resolution, 2 mm; temporal resolution, 100 ms), we surveyed the neo...

  20. On the effects of tactile touch in Parkinson's disease patients

    OpenAIRE

    Skogar, Örjan

    2013-01-01

    Background: Tactile Touch as a treatment modality is, in broad terms, scientifically unexplored. Patients use Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) forms of treatment outside the area of pharmaceuticals to a great extent, particularly patients suffering from chronic diseases. Delineating and evaluating patients’ own experiences of alleviation using different treatment forms are important tasks for modern health services. The search for humoral substrates that reflect bodily experie...

  1. Manual command component with tactile and/or kinesthetic feedback

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Foumier, R.

    1995-01-01

    The invention concerns a manual command component designed to be use by a human hand in order to control a slave system, with a tactile and/or kinesthetic feedback. It is composed by a handle and by piece(s) for the feedback. The handle contains a captor to signalize the move and the speed. The signals are transmitted to the slave system. The later send feedbacks which are transformed in a couple for the handle. (TEC)

  2. Tactile Feedback for Above-Device Gesture Interfaces

    OpenAIRE

    Freeman, Euan; Brewster, Stephen; Lantz, Vuokko

    2014-01-01

    Above-device gesture interfaces let people interact in the space above mobile devices using hand and finger movements. For example, users could gesture over a mobile phone or wearable without having to use the touchscreen. We look at how above-device interfaces can also give feedback in the space over the device. Recent haptic and wearable technologies give new ways to provide tactile feedback while gesturing, letting touchless gesture interfaces give touch feedback. In this paper we take a f...

  3. Enhanced Motor Imagery-Based BCI Performance via Tactile Stimulation on Unilateral Hand

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaokang Shu

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Brain-computer interface (BCI has attracted great interests for its effectiveness in assisting disabled people. However, due to the poor BCI performance, this technique is still far from daily-life applications. One of critical issues confronting BCI research is how to enhance BCI performance. This study aimed at improving the motor imagery (MI based BCI accuracy by integrating MI tasks with unilateral tactile stimulation (Uni-TS. The effects were tested on both healthy subjects and stroke patients in a controlled study. Twenty-two healthy subjects and four stroke patients were recruited and randomly divided into a control-group and an enhanced-group. In the control-group, subjects performed two blocks of conventional MI tasks (left hand vs. right hand, with 80 trials in each block. In the enhanced-group, subjects also performed two blocks of MI tasks, but constant tactile stimulation was applied on the non-dominant/paretic hand during MI tasks in the second block. We found the Uni-TS significantly enhanced the contralateral cortical activations during MI of the stimulated hand, whereas it had no influence on activation patterns during MI of the non-stimulated hand. The two-class BCI decoding accuracy was significantly increased from 72.5% (MI without Uni-TS to 84.7% (MI with Uni-TS in the enhanced-group (p < 0.001, paired t-test. Moreover, stroke patients in the enhanced-group achieved an accuracy >80% during MI with Uni-TS. This novel approach complements the conventional methods for BCI enhancement without increasing source information or complexity of signal processing. This enhancement via Uni-TS may facilitate clinical applications of MI-BCI.

  4. Artificial Skin Ridges Enhance Local Tactile Shape Discrimination

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shuzhi Sam Ge

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available One of the fundamental requirements for an artificial hand to successfully grasp and manipulate an object is to be able to distinguish different objects’ shapes and, more specifically, the objects’ surface curvatures. In this study, we investigate the possibility of enhancing the curvature detection of embedded tactile sensors by proposing a ridged fingertip structure, simulating human fingerprints. In addition, a curvature detection approach based on machine learning methods is proposed to provide the embedded sensors with the ability to discriminate the surface curvature of different objects. For this purpose, a set of experiments were carried out to collect tactile signals from a 2 × 2 tactile sensor array, then the signals were processed and used for learning algorithms. To achieve the best possible performance for our machine learning approach, three different learning algorithms of Naïve Bayes (NB, Artificial Neural Networks (ANN, and Support Vector Machines (SVM were implemented and compared for various parameters. Finally, the most accurate method was selected to evaluate the proposed skin structure in recognition of three different curvatures. The results showed an accuracy rate of 97.5% in surface curvature discrimination.

  5. Tactile sensor of hardness recognition based on magnetic anomaly detection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xue, Lingyun; Zhang, Dongfang; Chen, Qingguang; Rao, Huanle; Xu, Ping

    2018-03-01

    Hardness, as one kind of tactile sensing, plays an important role in the field of intelligent robot application such as gripping, agricultural harvesting, prosthetic hand and so on. Recently, with the rapid development of magnetic field sensing technology with high performance, a number of magnetic sensors have been developed for intelligent application. The tunnel Magnetoresistance(TMR) based on magnetoresistance principal works as the sensitive element to detect the magnetic field and it has proven its excellent ability of weak magnetic detection. In the paper, a new method based on magnetic anomaly detection was proposed to detect the hardness in the tactile way. The sensor is composed of elastic body, ferrous probe, TMR element, permanent magnet. When the elastic body embedded with ferrous probe touches the object under the certain size of force, deformation of elastic body will produce. Correspondingly, the ferrous probe will be forced to displace and the background magnetic field will be distorted. The distorted magnetic field was detected by TMR elements and the output signal at different time can be sampled. The slope of magnetic signal with the sampling time is different for object with different hardness. The result indicated that the magnetic anomaly sensor can recognize the hardness rapidly within 150ms after the tactile moment. The hardness sensor based on magnetic anomaly detection principal proposed in the paper has the advantages of simple structure, low cost, rapid response and it has shown great application potential in the field of intelligent robot.

  6. Arborealities: The Tactile Ecology of Hardy’s Woodlanders

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    William A. Cohen

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available This article asks what consequences two recent movements in scholarship - affect theory and environmental studies - might have for understanding the Victorian tactile imagination. Thomas Hardy's 1887 novel 'The Woodlanders' provides a means of addressing this question, for it shares with posthumanist critics a view that people are material things in a world of things, and that the world is itself a collection of vital agencies and networked actors. Hardy shows how a tactile modality provides a point of entry into discussions of both affect and ecology, situating the human in a proximate, contiguous relation to both bodily and environmental materialities. 'The Woodlanders' offers a world in which trees, in particular, work on - and are in turn worked on by - human objects; a world in which, one might say, the trees are people and the people are trees. This arboreality is far from a sentimental oneness with nature, nor is it an exercise in anthropomorphization. Instead, it provides a recognition of the inhuman, material, and sensate aspects of the human; or, perhaps better, of the human as rooted, budding, leafy, and abloom. Like some recent theoretical accounts, 'The Woodlanders' disperses agency among human and non-human elements alike, employing a tactile mode of representation to break down distinctions between them. Normal 0 false false false EN-US X-NONE X-NONE

  7. Improved tactile resonance sensor for robotic assisted surgery

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oliva Uribe, David; Schoukens, Johan; Stroop, Ralf

    2018-01-01

    This paper presents an improved tactile sensor using a piezoelectric bimorph able to differentiate soft materials with similar mechanical characteristics. The final aim is to develop intelligent surgical tools for brain tumour resection using integrated sensors in order to improve tissue tumour delineation and tissue differentiation. The bimorph sensor is driven using a random phase multisine and the properties of contact between the sensor's tip and a certain load are evaluated by means of the evaluation of the nonparametric FRF. An analysis of the nonlinear contributions is presented to show that the use of a linear model is feasible for the measurement conditions. A series of gelatine phantoms were tested. The tactile sensor is able to identify minimal differences in the consistency of the measured samples considering viscoelastic behaviour. A variance analysis was performed to evaluate the reliability of the sensors and to identify possible error sources due to inconsistencies in the preparation method of the phantoms. The results of the variance analysis are discussed showing that ability of the proposed tactile sensor to perform high quality measurements.

  8. Effect of Means of Problem-Oriented Physical Rehabilitation on Pain and Tactile Sensitivity and Pain Syndrome Intensity in Women with Post-Mastectomy Syndrome

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Т. Є. Одинець

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available The objective of the paper is to determine the effectiveness of problem-oriented physical rehabilitation of women with post-mastectomy syndrome in terms of normalization of their sensitivity and lessening of the pain syndrome. Materials and methods. The paper provides a review of the related literary sources and empirical data analyzed and summarized, offers definitions of pain by the Visual Analogue Scale, McGill Pain Questionnaire and the Verbal Rating Scale, evaluates tactile and pain sensitivity, and uses the methods of mathematical statistics. The participants in the study were 50 women with diagnosed with the post-mastectomy syndrome and at the stage of residential treatment. Results: The developed problem-oriented physical rehabilitation experimentally proved effective by showing improvements in tactile and pain sensitivity, and pain lessening by the sensory, affective and rating scales in women with post-mastectomy syndrome at the stage of residential treatment.

  9. Multisensory Tracking of Objects in Darkness: Capture of Positive Afterimages by the Tactile and Proprioceptive Senses.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brian W Stone

    Full Text Available This paper reports on three experiments investigating the contribution of different sensory modalities to the tracking of objects moved in total darkness. Participants sitting in the dark were exposed to a brief, bright flash which reliably induced a positive visual afterimage of the scene so illuminated. If the participants subsequently move their hand in the darkness, the visual afterimage of that hand fades or disappears; this is presumably due to conflict between the illusory visual afterimage (of the hand in its original location and other information (e.g., proprioceptive from a general mechanism for tracking body parts. This afterimage disappearance effect also occurs for held objects which are moved in the dark, and some have argued that this represents a case of body schema extension, i.e. the rapid incorporation of held external objects into the body schema. We demonstrate that the phenomenon is not limited to held objects and occurs in conditions where incorporation into the body schema is unlikely. Instead, we propose that the disappearance of afterimages of objects moved in darkness comes from a general mechanism for object tracking which integrates input from multiple sensory systems. This mechanism need not be limited to tracking body parts, and thus we need not invoke body schema extension to explain the afterimage disappearance. In this series of experiments, we test whether auditory feedback of object movement can induce afterimage disappearance, demonstrate that the disappearance effect scales with the magnitude of proprioceptive feedback, and show that tactile feedback alone is sufficient for the effect. Together, these data demonstrate that the visual percept of a positive afterimage is constructed not just from visual input of the scene when light reaches the eyes, but in conjunction with input from multiple other senses.

  10. About Face: Evaluating and Managing Tactile Impairment at the Time of Autism Diagnosis

    OpenAIRE

    Silva, Louisa M. T.; Schalock, Mark; Gabrielsen, Kristen R.

    2015-01-01

    Evaluation for sensory impairment is a routine part of autism diagnosis. Sensory impairment of hearing, vision, or touch results in developmental delay and must be addressed before delay can resolve. Recent studies confirm that tactile impairment is present in autism and can be effectively treated with a tactile stimulation protocol. The research suggests a change in management at the time of autism diagnosis to include evaluation and treatment of tactile impairment. Here we validate screenin...

  11. Evaluating tactile feedback in robotic surgery for potential clinical application using an animal model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wottawa, Christopher R; Genovese, Bradley; Nowroozi, Bryan N; Hart, Steven D; Bisley, James W; Grundfest, Warren S; Dutson, Erik P

    2016-08-01

    The aims of this study were to evaluate (1) grasping forces with the application of a tactile feedback system in vivo and (2) the incidence of tissue damage incurred during robotic tissue manipulation. Robotic-assisted minimally invasive surgery has been shown to be beneficial in a variety of surgical specialties, particularly radical prostatectomy. This innovative surgical tool offers advantages over traditional laparoscopic techniques, such as improved wrist-like maneuverability, stereoscopic video displays, and scaling of surgical gestures to increase precision. A widely cited disadvantage associated with robotic systems is the absence of tactile feedback. Nineteen subjects were categorized into two groups: 5 experts (six or more robotic cases) and 14 novices (five cases or less). The subjects used the da Vinci with integrated tactile feedback to run porcine bowel in the following conditions: (T1: deactivated tactile feedback; T2: activated tactile feedback; and T3: deactivated tactile feedback). The grasping force, incidence of tissue damage, and the correlation of grasping force and tissue damage were analyzed. Tissue damage was evaluated both grossly and histologically by a pathologist blinded to the sample. Tactile feedback resulted in significantly decreased grasping forces for both experts and novices (P system was deactivated (P > 0.05 in all subjects). The in vivo application of integrated tactile feedback in the robotic system demonstrates significantly reduced grasping forces, resulting in significantly less tissue damage. This tactile feedback system may improve surgical outcomes and broaden the use of robotic-assisted minimally invasive surgery.

  12. The effect of chronic low back pain on tactile suppression during back movements.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Damme, Stefaan; Van Hulle, Lore; Danneels, Lieven; Spence, Charles; Crombez, Geert

    2014-10-01

    The aim of the present study was to examine whether tactile suppression, the phenomenon whereby tactile perception is suppressed during movement, would occur in the context of back movements. Of particular interest, it was investigated if tactile suppression in the back would be attenuated in those suffering from chronic low back pain. Individuals with chronic low back pain (N = 30) and a matched control group (N = 24) detected tactile stimuli on three possible locations (back, arm, chest) while performing a back or arm movement, or no movement. We hypothesized that the movements would induce tactile suppression, and that this effect would be largest for low-intense stimuli on the moving body part. We further hypothesized that, during back movements, tactile suppression on the back would be less pronounced in the chronic low back pain group than in the control group. The results showed the expected general tactile suppression effects. The hypothesis of back-specific attenuation of tactile suppression in the chronic low back pain group was not supported. However, back-specific tactile suppression in the chronic low back pain group was less pronounced in those who performed the back movements more slowly. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  13. Merkel cells transduce and encode tactile stimuli to drive Aβ-afferent impulses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ikeda, Ryo; Cha, Myeounghoon; Ling, Jennifer; Jia, Zhanfeng; Coyle, Dennis; Gu, Jianguo G.

    2014-01-01

    SUMMARY Sensory systems for detecting tactile stimuli have evolved from touch-sensing nerves in invertebrates to complicated tactile end-organs in mammals. Merkel discs are tactile end-organs consisting of Merkel cells and Aβ-afferent nerve endings, and are localized in fingertips, whisker hair follicles and other touch-sensitive spots. Merkel discs transduce touch into slowly adapting impulses to enable tactile discrimination, but their transduction and encoding mechanisms remain unknown. Using rat whisker hair follicles, we show that Merkel cells rather than Aβ-afferent nerve endings are primary sites of tactile transduction, and identify the Piezo2 ion channel as the Merkel cell mechanical transducer. Piezo2 transduces tactile stimuli into Ca2+-action potentials in Merkel cells, which drive Aβ-afferent nerve endings to fire slowly adapting impulses. We further demonstrate that Piezo2 and Ca2+-action potentials in Merkel cells are required for behavioral tactile responses. Our findings provide insights into how tactile end-organs function and have clinical implications for tactile dysfunctions. PMID:24746027

  14. Facilitating Mathematical Practices through Visual Representations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murata, Aki; Stewart, Chana

    2017-01-01

    Effective use of mathematical representation is key to supporting student learning. In "Principles to Actions: Ensuring Mathematical Success for All" (NCTM 2014), "use and connect mathematical representations" is one of the effective Mathematics Teaching Practices. By using different representations, students examine concepts…

  15. A critical experimental study of the classical tactile threshold theory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Medina Leonel E

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The tactile sense is being used in a variety of applications involving tactile human-machine interfaces. In a significant number of publications the classical threshold concept plays a central role in modelling and explaining psychophysical experimental results such as in stochastic resonance (SR phenomena. In SR, noise enhances detection of sub-threshold stimuli and the phenomenon is explained stating that the required amplitude to exceed the sensory threshold barrier can be reached by adding noise to a sub-threshold stimulus. We designed an experiment to test the validity of the classical vibrotactile threshold. Using a second choice experiment, we show that individuals can order sensorial events below the level known as the classical threshold. If the observer's sensorial system is not activated by stimuli below the threshold, then a second choice could not be above the chance level. Nevertheless, our experimental results are above that chance level contradicting the definition of the classical tactile threshold. Results We performed a three alternative forced choice detection experiment on 6 subjects asking them first and second choices. In each trial, only one of the intervals contained a stimulus and the others contained only noise. According to the classical threshold assumptions, a correct second choice response corresponds to a guess attempt with a statistical frequency of 50%. Results show an average of 67.35% (STD = 1.41% for the second choice response that is not explained by the classical threshold definition. Additionally, for low stimulus amplitudes, second choice correct detection is above chance level for any detectability level. Conclusions Using a second choice experiment, we show that individuals can order sensorial events below the level known as a classical threshold. If the observer's sensorial system is not activated by stimuli below the threshold, then a second choice could not be above the chance

  16. Teaching Coin Discrimination to Children with Visual Impairments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanney, Nicole M.; Tiger, Jeffrey H.

    2012-01-01

    We taught 2 children with visual impairments to select a coin from an array using tactile cues after hearing its name and then to select a coin after hearing its value. Following the acquisition of these listener (receptive language) skills, we then observed the emergence of speaker (expressive language) skills without direct instruction.…

  17. Structural reorganization of the early visual cortex following Braille training in sighted adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bola, Łukasz; Siuda-Krzywicka, Katarzyna; Paplińska, Małgorzata; Sumera, Ewa; Zimmermann, Maria; Jednoróg, Katarzyna; Marchewka, Artur; Szwed, Marcin

    2017-12-12

    Training can induce cross-modal plasticity in the human cortex. A well-known example of this phenomenon is the recruitment of visual areas for tactile and auditory processing. It remains unclear to what extent such plasticity is associated with changes in anatomy. Here we enrolled 29 sighted adults into a nine-month tactile Braille-reading training, and used voxel-based morphometry and diffusion tensor imaging to describe the resulting anatomical changes. In addition, we collected resting-state fMRI data to relate these changes to functional connectivity between visual and somatosensory-motor cortices. Following Braille-training, we observed substantial grey and white matter reorganization in the anterior part of early visual cortex (peripheral visual field). Moreover, relative to its posterior, foveal part, the peripheral representation of early visual cortex had stronger functional connections to somatosensory and motor cortices even before the onset of training. Previous studies show that the early visual cortex can be functionally recruited for tactile discrimination, including recognition of Braille characters. Our results demonstrate that reorganization in this region induced by tactile training can also be anatomical. This change most likely reflects a strengthening of existing connectivity between the peripheral visual cortex and somatosensory cortices, which suggests a putative mechanism for cross-modal recruitment of visual areas.

  18. Creating opportunities in astronomy: Communication for people who are blind or visually impaired

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grice, N.

    2008-06-01

    Astronomy is such a visually rich field that you may wonder if access is possible for a person who is blind or visually impaired. The good news is that with creative strategies and available resources, students who are blind need not be excluded. Braille text, tactile illustrations, handson models, and descriptive narration can remove many barriers.

  19. The visual rooting reflex in individuals with autism spectrum disorders and co-occurring intellectual disability

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Bildt, Annelies; Mulder, Erik J.; Van Lang, Natasja D. J.; de With, S. A. Jytte; Minderaa, Ruud B.; Stahl, Sherin S.; Anderson, George M.

    The rooting reflex has long been studied by neurologists and developmentalists and is defined as an orientation toward tactile stimulation in the perioral region or visual stimulation near the face. Nearly, all previous reports of the visual rooting reflex (VRR) concern its presence in adults with

  20. The spatiotopic 'visual' cortex of the blind

    Science.gov (United States)

    Likova, Lora

    2012-03-01

    Visual cortex activity in the blind has been shown in sensory tasks. Can it be activated in memory tasks? If so, are inherent features of its organization meaningfully employed? Our recent results in short-term blindfolded subjects imply that human primary visual cortex (V1) may operate as a modality-independent 'sketchpad' for working memory (Likova, 2010a). Interestingly, the spread of the V1 activation approximately corresponded to the spatial extent of the images in terms of their angle of projection to the subject. We now raise the questions of whether under long-term visual deprivation V1 is also employed in non-visual memory task, in particular in congenitally blind individuals, who have never had visual stimulation to guide the development of the visual area organization, and whether such spatial organization is still valid for the same paradigm that was used in blindfolded individuals. The outcome has implications for an emerging reconceptualization of the principles of brain architecture and its reorganization under sensory deprivation. Methods: We used a novel fMRI drawing paradigm in congenitally and late-onset blind, compared with sighted and blindfolded subjects in three conditions of 20s duration, separated by 20s rest-intervals, (i) Tactile Exploration: raised-line images explored and memorized; (ii) Tactile Memory Drawing: drawing the explored image from memory; (iii) Scribble: mindless drawing movements with no memory component. Results and Conclusions: V1 was strongly activated for Tactile Memory Drawing and Tactile Exploration in these totally blind subjects. Remarkably, after training, even in the memory task, the mapping of V1 activation largely corresponded to the angular projection of the tactile stimuli relative to the ego-center (i.e., the effective visual angle at the head); beyond this projective boundary, peripheral V1 signals were dramatically reduced or even suppressed. The matching extent of the activation in the congenitally blind

  1. Tooteko: a Case Study of Augmented Reality for AN Accessible Cultural Heritage. Digitization, 3d Printing and Sensors for AN Audio-Tactile Experience

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Agnano, F.; Balletti, C.; Guerra, F.; Vernier, P.

    2015-02-01

    Tooteko is a smart ring that allows to navigate any 3D surface with your finger tips and get in return an audio content that is relevant in relation to the part of the surface you are touching in that moment. Tooteko can be applied to any tactile surface, object or sheet. However, in a more specific domain, it wants to make traditional art venues accessible to the blind, while providing support to the reading of the work for all through the recovery of the tactile dimension in order to facilitate the experience of contact with art that is not only "under glass." The system is made of three elements: a high-tech ring, a tactile surface tagged with NFC sensors, and an app for tablet or smartphone. The ring detects and reads the NFC tags and, thanks to the Tooteko app, communicates in wireless mode with the smart device. During the tactile navigation of the surface, when the finger reaches a hotspot, the ring identifies the NFC tag and activates, through the app, the audio track that is related to that specific hotspot. Thus a relevant audio content relates to each hotspot. The production process of the tactile surfaces involves scanning, digitization of data and 3D printing. The first experiment was modelled on the facade of the church of San Michele in Isola, made by Mauro Codussi in the late fifteenth century, and which marks the beginning of the Renaissance in Venice. Due to the absence of recent documentation on the church, the Correr Museum asked the Laboratorio di Fotogrammetria to provide it with the aim of setting up an exhibition about the order of the Camaldolesi, owners of the San Michele island and church. The Laboratorio has made the survey of the facade through laser scanning and UAV photogrammetry. The point clouds were the starting point for prototypation and 3D printing on different supports. The idea of the integration between a 3D printed tactile surface and sensors was born as a final thesis project at the Postgraduate Mastercourse in Digital

  2. Tactile allodynia in patients with lumbar radicular pain (sciatica).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Defrin, Ruth; Devor, Marshall; Brill, Silviu

    2014-12-01

    We report a novel symptom in many patients with low back pain (LBP) that sheds new light on the underlying pain mechanism. By means of quantitative sensory testing, we compared patients with radicular LBP (sciatica), axial LBP (LBP without radiation into the leg), and healthy controls, searching for cutaneous allodynia in response to weak tactile and cooling stimuli on the leg and low back. Most patients with radicular pain (~60%) reported static and dynamic tactile allodynia, as well as cooling allodynia, on the leg, often extending into the foot. Some also reported allodynia on the low back. In axial LBP, allodynia was almost exclusively on the back. The degree of dynamic tactile allodynia correlated with the degree of background pain. The presence of allodynia suggests that the peripheral nerve generators of background leg and back pain have also induced central sensitization. The distal (foot) location of the allodynia in patients who have it indicates that the nociceptive drive that maintains the central sensitization arises paraspinally (ectopically) in injured ventral ramus afferents; this is not an instance of somatic referred pain. The presence of central sensitization also provides the first cogent account of shooting pain in sciatica as a wave of activity sweeping vectorially across the width of the sensitized dorsal horn. Finally, the results endorse leg allodynia as a pain biomarker in animal research on LBP, which is commonly used but has not been previously validated. In addition to informing the underlying mechanism of LBP, bedside mapping of allodynia might have practical implications for prognosis and treatment. How can you tell whether pain radiating into the leg in a patient with sciatica is neuropathic, ie, due to nerve injury? Copyright © 2014 International Association for the Study of Pain. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  3. Beats, Flesh, and Grain : Sonic Tactility and Affect in Electronic Dance Music

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Garcia, Luis-Manuel

    2015-01-01

    This essay sets out to explore the tactilization of sound in electronic dance music (EDM), which offers an important sensory-affective bridge between touch, sonic experience, and an expansive sense of connection in dancing crowds. EDM events tend to engender spaces of heightened tactility and

  4. Sensory Responsiveness and the Effects of Equal Subjective Rewards on Tactile Learning and Memory of Honeybees

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scheiner, Ricarda; Kuritz-Kaiser, Anthea; Menzel, Randolf; Erber, Joachim

    2005-01-01

    In tactile learning, sucrose is the unconditioned stimulus and reward, which is usually applied to the antenna to elicit proboscis extension and which the bee can drink when it is subsequently applied to the extended proboscis. The conditioned stimulus is a tactile object that the bee can scan with its antennae. In this paper we describe the…

  5. Guidelines for the use of vibro-tactile displays in human computer interaction

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Erp, J.B.F. van

    2002-01-01

    Vibro-tactile displays convey messages by presenting vibration to the user's skin. In recent years, the interest in and application of vibro-tactile displays is growing. Vibratory displays are introduced in mobile devices, desktop applications and even in aircraft [1]. Despite the growing interest,

  6. Audio-tactile stimulation: A tool to improve health and well-being?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dijk, E.O.; Nijholt, A.; Erp, J.B.F. van; Wolferen, G. van; Kuyper, E.

    2013-01-01

    Stimulation of the tactile sense or the hearing sense can be used to improve a person's health and well-being. For example, to make someone relax, feel better or sleep better. In this position paper, we present the concept of auditory-tactile stimulation for health and well-being. Through carefully

  7. Effect of Electrostatic Tactile Feedback on Accuracy and Efficiency of Pan Gestures on Touch Screens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Guohong; Sun, Xiaoying; Wang, Dangxiao; Liu, Yue; Zhang, Yuru

    2018-01-01

    Recently, many studies examined electrostatic tactile feedback on touch screens to enrich interaction experience. However, it is unclear as to whether added tactile feedback during a sliding process increases the accuracy of pan gestures with velocity constraints. In this study, a custom-designed electrostatic tactile display was considered. Initially, the accuracy and efficiency of pan gestures were compared under two conditions, namely with and without electrostatic tactile feedback. This was followed by exploring the evolution of completion time (CT) with different indices of difficulties (ID). Experimental results with 12 participants indicated that the accuracy and completion time of pan gestures with added tactile feedback significantly exceeded those without tactile feedback. Furthermore, the relationship between CT and ID satisfied Fitts' Law with a correlation coefficient exceeding 0.9. Based on the findings, a "Tactile Fruit Sorting" game was designed, and subjective and objective evaluations were conducted. The results confirmed that the added tactile feedback enhanced both user performance and interest with respect to the game.

  8. Tactile acuity is disrupted in osteoarthritis but is unrelated to disruptions in motor imagery performance.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Stanton, T.R.; Lin, C.W.; Bray, H.; Smeets, R.J.P.; Taylor, D.; Law, R.Y.; Moseley, G.L.

    2013-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To determine whether tactile acuity is disrupted in people with knee OA and to determine whether tactile acuity, a clinical signature of primary sensory cortex representation, is related to motor imagery performance (MIP; evaluates working body schema) and pain. METHODS: Experiment 1:

  9. Vestibulo-tactile interactions regarding motion perception and eye movements in yaw

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bos, J.E.; Erp, J.B.F. van; Groen, E.L.; Veen, H.J. van

    2005-01-01

    This paper shows that tactile stimulation can override vestibular information regarding spinning sensations and eye movements. However, we conclude that the current data do not support the hypothesis that tactile stimulation controls eye movements directly. To this end, twenty-four subjects were

  10. Presentation of Various Tactile Sensations Using Micro-Needle Electrotactile Display.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mayuko Tezuka

    Full Text Available Tactile displays provoke tactile sensations by artificially stimulating tactile receptors. While many types of tactile displays have been developed, electrotactile displays that exploit electric stimulation can be designed to be thin, light, flexible and thus, wearable. However, the high voltages required to stimulate tactile receptors and limited varieties of possible sensations pose problems. In our previous work, we developed an electrotactile display using a micro-needle electrode array that can drastically reduce the required voltage by penetrating through the high-impedance stratum corneum painlessly, but displaying various tactile sensations was still a challenge. In this work, we demonstrate presentation of tactile sensation of different roughness to the subjects, which is enabled by the arrangement of the electrodes; the needle electrodes are on the fingertip and the ground electrode is on the fingernail. With this arrangement, the display can stimulate the tactile receptors that are located not only in the shallow regions of the finger but also those in the deep regions. It was experimentally revealed that the required voltage was further reduced compared to previous devices and that the roughness presented by the display was controlled by the pulse frequency and the switching time, or the stimulation flow rate. The proposed electrotactile display is readily applicable as a new wearable haptic device for advanced information communication technology.

  11. Weber's Illusion and Body Shape: Anisotropy of Tactile Size Perception on the Hand

    Science.gov (United States)

    Longo, Matthew R.; Haggard, Patrick

    2011-01-01

    The perceived distance between touches on a single skin surface is larger on regions of high tactile sensitivity than those with lower acuity, an effect known as "Weber's illusion". This illusion suggests that tactile size perception involves a representation of the perceived size of body parts preserving characteristics of the somatosensory…

  12. Evidence for embodied predictive coding: the anterior insula coordinates cortical processing of tactile deviancy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Allen, Micah; Fardo, Francesca; Dietz, Martin

    2015-01-01

    this possibility in the somatosensory domain, we measured brain activity using functional magnetic resonance imaging while healthy participants discriminated tactile stimuli in a roving oddball design. Dynamic Causal Modelling revealed that unexpected stimuli increased the strength of forward connections...... processing of tactile changes to support body awareness....

  13. Tactile Sensing From Laser-Ablated Metallized PET Films

    KAUST Repository

    Nag, Anindya

    2016-10-17

    This paper reports the design, fabrication, and implementation of a novel sensor patch developed from commercial polyethylene terephthalate films metallized with aluminum on one side. The aluminum was ablated with laser to form interdigitated electrodes to make sensor prototypes. The interdigitated electrodes were patterned on the substrate with a laser cutter. Characterization of the prototypes was done to determine their operating frequency followed by experimentation. The prototypes have been used as a tactile sensor showing promising results for using these patches in applications with contact pressures considerably lesser than normal human contact pressure.

  14. Tactile shoe inlays for high speed pressure monitoring

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Drimus, Alin; Mátéfi-Tempfli, Stefan

    2015-01-01

    This work describes the development of flexible tactile sensor shoe inlays for humanoid robots. Their design is based on a sandwich structure of flexible layers with a thin sheet of piezoresistive rubber as main transducer element. The layout and patterning of top and bottom electrodes give 1024...... pressure sensitive cells and the use of high speed electronics and multiplexing algorithms provides frame rates of 100 Hz. The sensors tolerate overloads while showing a consistent output. The developed prototypes show a high potential not only for robotics, but also for use in sensorised human prosthetics....

  15. Can tactile sensory processing differentiate between children with autistic disorder and asperger's disorder?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghanizadeh, Ahmad

    2011-05-01

    There are debates whether autistic disorder (autism) and Asperger's disorder are two distinct disorders. Moreover, interventional sensory occupational therapy should consider the clinical characteristics of patients. Already, commonalities and differences between Asperger's disorder and autistic disorder are not well studied. The aim of this study is to compare tactile sensory function of children with autistic disorder and children with Asperger's disorder. Tactile sensory function was compared between 36 children with autism and 19 children with Asperger's disorder. The two disorders were diagnosed based on Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders Fourth Edition, Text Revision. The parent-reported Tactile Dysfunction Checklist was used to assess the three aspects of hypersensitivity, hyposensitivity, and poor tactile perception and discrimination. Developmental coordination was also assessed. Developmental coordination problems total score was not associated with group. The mean (standard deviation) score of tactile hyper-responsivity was not different between the groups. Tactile hyporesponsivity and poor tactile perception and discrimination scores were statistically higher in autistic disorder than Asperger's disorder group. These results for the first time indicated that at least some aspects of tactile perception can differentiate these two disorders. Children with autistic disorder have more tactile sensory seeking behaviors than children with Asperger's disorder. Moreover, the ability of children with autistic disorder for tactile discrimination and sensory perception is less than those with Asperger's disorder. Interventional sensory therapy in children with autistic disorder should have some characteristics that can be different and specific for children with Asperger's disorder. Formal intelligence quotient testing was not performed on all of the children evaluated, which is a limitation to this study. In some cases, a clinical estimation of

  16. When Sandpaper Is 'Kiki' and Satin Is 'Bouba': an Exploration of the Associations Between Words, Emotional States, and the Tactile Attributes of Everyday Materials.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Etzi, Roberta; Spence, Charles; Zampini, Massimiliano; Gallace, Alberto

    2016-01-01

    Over the last decade, scientists working on the topic of multisensory integration, as well as designers and marketers involved in trying to understand consumer behavior, have become increasingly interested in the non-arbitrary associations (e.g., sound symbolism) between different sensorial attributes of the stimuli they work with. Nevertheless, to date, little research in this area has investigated the presence of these crossmodal correspondences in the tactile evaluation of everyday materials. Here, we explore the presence and nature of the associations between tactile sensations, the sound of non-words, and people's emotional states. Samples of cotton, satin, tinfoil, sandpaper, and abrasive sponge, were stroked along the participants' forearm at the speed of 5 cm/s. Participants evaluated the materials along several dimensions, comprising scales anchored by pairs of non-words (e.g., Kiki/Bouba) and adjectives (e.g., ugly/beautiful). The results revealed that smoother textures were associated with non-words made up of round-shaped sounds (e.g., Maluma), whereas rougher textures were more strongly associated with sharp-transient sounds (e.g., Takete). The results also revealed the presence of a number of correspondences between tactile surfaces and adjectives related to visual and auditory attributes. For example, smooth textures were associated with features evoked by words such as 'bright' and 'quiet'; by contrast, the rougher textures were associated with adjectives such as 'dim' and 'loud'. The textures were also found to be associated with a number of emotional labels. Taken together, these results further our understanding of crossmodal correspondences involving the tactile modality and provide interesting insights in the applied field of design and marketing.

  17. Effects of the Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor Val66Met polymorphism and resting brain functional connectivity on individual differences in tactile cognitive performance in healthy young adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Xuejuan; Xu, Ziliang; Liu, Lin; Liu, Peng; Sun, Jinbo; Jin, Lingmin; Zhu, Yuanqiang; Fei, Ningbo; Qin, Wei

    2017-07-28

    Cognitive processes involve input from multiple sensory modalities and obvious differences in the level of cognitive function can be observed between individuals. Evidence to date understanding the biological basis of tactile cognitive variability, however, is limited compared with other forms of sensory cognition. Data from auditory and visual cognition research suggest that variations in both genetics and intrinsic brain function might contribute to individual differences in tactile cognitive performance. In the present study, by using the tactual performance test (TPT), a widely used neuropsychological assessment tool, we investigated the effects of the brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) Val66Met polymorphism and resting-state brain functional connectivity (FC) on interindividual variability in TPT performance in healthy, young Chinese adults. Our results showed that the BDNF genotypes and resting-state FC had significant effects on the variability in TPT performance, together accounting for 32.5% and 19.1% of the variance on TPT total score and Memory subitem score respectively. Having fewer Met alleles, stronger anticorrelations between left posterior superior temporal gyrus and somatosensory areas (right postcentral gyrus and right parietal operculum cortex), and greater positive correlation between left parietal operculum cortex and left central opercular cortex, all correspond with better performance of TPT task. And FC between left parietal operculum cortex and left central opercular cortex might be a mediator of the relationship between BDNF genotypes and Memory subitem score. These data demonstrate a novel contribution of intrinsic brain function to tactile cognitive capacity, and further confirm the genetic basis of tactile cognition. Our findings might also explain the interindividual differences in cognitive ability observed in those who are blind and/or deaf from a new perspective. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  18. Visual comparison for information visualization

    KAUST Repository

    Gleicher, M.; Albers, D.; Walker, R.; Jusufi, I.; Hansen, C. D.; Roberts, J. C.

    2011-01-01

    Data analysis often involves the comparison of complex objects. With the ever increasing amounts and complexity of data, the demand for systems to help with these comparisons is also growing. Increasingly, information visualization tools support such comparisons explicitly, beyond simply allowing a viewer to examine each object individually. In this paper, we argue that the design of information visualizations of complex objects can, and should, be studied in general, that is independently of what those objects are. As a first step in developing this general understanding of comparison, we propose a general taxonomy of visual designs for comparison that groups designs into three basic categories, which can be combined. To clarify the taxonomy and validate its completeness, we provide a survey of work in information visualization related to comparison. Although we find a great diversity of systems and approaches, we see that all designs are assembled from the building blocks of juxtaposition, superposition and explicit encodings. This initial exploration shows the power of our model, and suggests future challenges in developing a general understanding of comparative visualization and facilitating the development of more comparative visualization tools. © The Author(s) 2011.

  19. Visual comparison for information visualization

    KAUST Repository

    Gleicher, M.

    2011-09-07

    Data analysis often involves the comparison of complex objects. With the ever increasing amounts and complexity of data, the demand for systems to help with these comparisons is also growing. Increasingly, information visualization tools support such comparisons explicitly, beyond simply allowing a viewer to examine each object individually. In this paper, we argue that the design of information visualizations of complex objects can, and should, be studied in general, that is independently of what those objects are. As a first step in developing this general understanding of comparison, we propose a general taxonomy of visual designs for comparison that groups designs into three basic categories, which can be combined. To clarify the taxonomy and validate its completeness, we provide a survey of work in information visualization related to comparison. Although we find a great diversity of systems and approaches, we see that all designs are assembled from the building blocks of juxtaposition, superposition and explicit encodings. This initial exploration shows the power of our model, and suggests future challenges in developing a general understanding of comparative visualization and facilitating the development of more comparative visualization tools. © The Author(s) 2011.

  20. Applications of visual soil evaluation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ball, Bruce C; Munkholm, Lars Juhl; Batey, Tom

    2013-01-01

    Working Group F “Visual Soil Examination and Evaluation” (VSEE) was formed over 30 years ago within the International Soil & Tillage Research Organisation (ISTRO) on the initiative of Tom Batey. The objectives of the Working Group are to stimulate interest in field methods of visual-tactile soil...... assessment, to encourage their wider use and to foster international cooperation. The previous main meeting of the group in 2005 at Peronne, France, brought together, for the first time, a group of soil scientists who had each developed a method to evaluate soil structure directly in the field (Boizard et al...... to the re-development of the Peerlkamp numeric method of assessment of soil structure into the Visual Evaluation of Soil Structure (VESS) spade test (Ball et al., 2007 and Guimarães et al., 2011). The meeting also recommended further cooperation between members of the Working Group. The evaluation...

  1. Feasibility study of patient motion monitoring using tactile array sensor

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kim, Tae Ho; Kang, Seong Hee; Kim, Dong Su; Cho, Min Seok; Kim, Kyeong Hyeon; Suh, Tae Suk; Kim, Si Yong

    2014-01-01

    The aim of this study is to evaluate patient pretreatment set-up error and intra-fraction motion using the tactile array sensors (Pressure Profile Systems Inc, Los Angeles, CA) which could measure distributed pressure profiles along the contacting surface and to check a feasibility of the sensor (tactile array sensor) in the patient motion monitoring. Laser alignment and optical camera based monitoring system are very useful for reduce patient set-up error but these systems could not monitor the blind area like patient's back position. Actually after patient alignment using laser or optical monitoring system, it was assumed that there is no error in the patient's back position (pressure profile distribution). But if an error occurs in the patient's back position, it will affect the radiation therapy accuracy. In spite of optical motion monitoring or using the immobilization tool, distributed pressure profiles of patient's back position was changed during inter and intra-fraction. For more accurate patient set-up, blind area (patient's back) monitoring was necessary. We expect that the proposed method will be very useful for make up for the weakness of optical monitoring method

  2. A ferrofluid based artificial tactile sensor with magnetic field control

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Volkova, T.I., E-mail: tatiana.volkova@tu-ilmenau.de [Technical Mechanics Group, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, Technische Universität Ilmenau, Ilmenau D-98684 (Germany); Böhm, V., E-mail: valter.boehm@tu-ilmenau.de [Technical Mechanics Group, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, Technische Universität Ilmenau, Ilmenau D-98684 (Germany); Naletova, V.A., E-mail: naletova@imec.msu.ru [Faculty of Mechanics and Mathematics, Lomonosov Moscow State University, 119991 Moscow (Russian Federation); Kaufhold, T., E-mail: tobias.kaufhold@tu-ilmenau.de [Technical Mechanics Group, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, Technische Universität Ilmenau, Ilmenau D-98684 (Germany); Becker, F., E-mail: felix.becker@tu-ilmenau.de [Technical Mechanics Group, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, Technische Universität Ilmenau, Ilmenau D-98684 (Germany); Zeidis, I., E-mail: igor.zeidis@tu-ilmenau.de [Technical Mechanics Group, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, Technische Universität Ilmenau, Ilmenau D-98684 (Germany); Zimmermann, K., E-mail: klaus.zimmermann@tu-ilmenau.de [Technical Mechanics Group, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, Technische Universität Ilmenau, Ilmenau D-98684 (Germany)

    2017-06-01

    The paper deals with a tactile sensor inspired by biological hairs of mammals. The working principle is based on the effect of the magnetic force exerted on a paramagnetic body submerged into a ferrofluid volume under the influence of a nonuniform magnetic field. The deflection of the sensor's rod caused by external mechanical stimuli may be unambiguously identified by the distortion of the magnetic field, which occurs due to the motion of the attached body in the ferrofluid. The magnetic force acting on the body is evaluated experimentally and theoretically for the nonuniform magnetic field of a permanent magnet. The controlled oscillations of the rod are realised by applying a nonuniform magnetic field of periodically altering direction. - Highlights: • A design approach of a tactile sensor inspired by special mammalian hairs is presented. • The working principle is based on magnetic properties of a ferrofluid in magnetic fields. • The magnetic force acting on a body submerged into a ferrofluid volume is evaluated. • External mechanical stimuli may be identified by the distortion of the magnetic field. • The controlled whisking-like oscillations of the sensor's rod are realised experimentally.

  3. A ferrofluid based artificial tactile sensor with magnetic field control

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Volkova, T.I.; Böhm, V.; Naletova, V.A.; Kaufhold, T.; Becker, F.; Zeidis, I.; Zimmermann, K.

    2017-01-01

    The paper deals with a tactile sensor inspired by biological hairs of mammals. The working principle is based on the effect of the magnetic force exerted on a paramagnetic body submerged into a ferrofluid volume under the influence of a nonuniform magnetic field. The deflection of the sensor's rod caused by external mechanical stimuli may be unambiguously identified by the distortion of the magnetic field, which occurs due to the motion of the attached body in the ferrofluid. The magnetic force acting on the body is evaluated experimentally and theoretically for the nonuniform magnetic field of a permanent magnet. The controlled oscillations of the rod are realised by applying a nonuniform magnetic field of periodically altering direction. - Highlights: • A design approach of a tactile sensor inspired by special mammalian hairs is presented. • The working principle is based on magnetic properties of a ferrofluid in magnetic fields. • The magnetic force acting on a body submerged into a ferrofluid volume is evaluated. • External mechanical stimuli may be identified by the distortion of the magnetic field. • The controlled whisking-like oscillations of the sensor's rod are realised experimentally.

  4. Tactile memory of deaf-blind adults on four tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arnold, Paul; Heiron, Karen

    2002-02-01

    The performance of ten deaf-blind and ten sighted-hearing participants on four tactile memory tasks was investigated. Recognition and recall memory tasks and a matching pairs game were used. It was hypothesized that deaf-blind participants would be superior on each task. Performance was measured in terms of the time taken, and the number of items correctly recalled. In Experiments 1 and 2, which measured recognition memory in terms of the time taken to remember target items, the hypothesis was supported, but not by the length of time taken to recognize the target items, or for the number of target items correctly identified. The hypothesis was supported by Experiment 3, which measured recall memory, with regard to time taken to complete some of the tasks but not for the number of correctly recalled positions. Experiment 4, which used the matching pairs game, supported the hypothesis in terms of both time taken and the number of moves required. It is concluded that the deaf-blind people's tactile encoding is more efficient than that of sighted-hearing people, and that it is probable that their storage and retrieval are normal.

  5. Using tactile features to help functionally blind individuals denominate banknotes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lederman, Susan J; Hamilton, Cheryl

    2002-01-01

    This study, which was conducted for the Bank of Canada, assessed the feasibility of presenting a raised texture feature together with a tactile denomination code on the next Canadian banknote series ($5, $10, $20, $50, and $100). Adding information accessible by hand would permit functionally blind individuals to independently denominate banknotes. In Experiment 1, 20 blindfolded, sighted university students denominated a set of 8 alternate tactile feature designs. Across the 8 design series, the proportion of correct responses never fell below .97; the mean response time per banknote ranged from 11.4 to 13.1 s. In Experiment 2, 27 functionally blind participants denominated 4 of the previous 8 candidate sets of banknotes. The proportion of correct responses never fell below .92; the corresponding mean response time per banknote ranged from 11.7 to 13.0 s. The Bank of Canada selected one of the four raised-texture designs for inclusion on its new banknote series. Other potential applications include designing haptic displays for teleoperation and virtual environment systems.

  6. Feasibility study of patient motion monitoring using tactile array sensor

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kim, Tae Ho; Kang, Seong Hee; Kim, Dong Su; Cho, Min Seok; Kim, Kyeong Hyeon; Suh, Tae Suk [Dept. of Biomedical Engineering, Research Institute of Biomedical Engineering, the Catholic University of Korea, Seoul (Korea, Republic of); Kim, Si Yong [Dept. of Radiation Oncology, Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond (United States)

    2014-11-15

    The aim of this study is to evaluate patient pretreatment set-up error and intra-fraction motion using the tactile array sensors (Pressure Profile Systems Inc, Los Angeles, CA) which could measure distributed pressure profiles along the contacting surface and to check a feasibility of the sensor (tactile array sensor) in the patient motion monitoring. Laser alignment and optical camera based monitoring system are very useful for reduce patient set-up error but these systems could not monitor the blind area like patient's back position. Actually after patient alignment using laser or optical monitoring system, it was assumed that there is no error in the patient's back position (pressure profile distribution). But if an error occurs in the patient's back position, it will affect the radiation therapy accuracy. In spite of optical motion monitoring or using the immobilization tool, distributed pressure profiles of patient's back position was changed during inter and intra-fraction. For more accurate patient set-up, blind area (patient's back) monitoring was necessary. We expect that the proposed method will be very useful for make up for the weakness of optical monitoring method.

  7. A Cross-Platform Tactile Capabilities Interface for Humanoid Robots

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jie eMa

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available This article presents the core elements of a cross-platform tactile capabilities interface (TCI for humanoid arms. The aim of the interface is to reduce the cost of developing humanoid robot capabilities by supporting reuse through cross-platform deployment. The article presents a comparative analysis of existing robot middleware frameworks, as well as the technical details of the TCI framework that builds on the the existing YARP platform. The TCI framework currently includes robot arm actuators with robot skin sensors. It presents such hardware in a platform independent manner, making it possible to write robot control software that can be executed on different robots through the TCI frameworks. The TCI framework supports multiple humanoid platforms and this article also presents a case study of a cross-platform implementation of a set of tactile protective withdrawal reflexes that have been realised on both the Nao and iCub humanoid robot platforms using the same high-level source code.

  8. A CAI System for Visually Impaired Children to Improve Abilities of Orientation and Mobility

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yoneda, Takahiro; Kudo, Hiroaki; Minagawa, Hiroki; Ohnishi, Noboru; Matsubara, Shizuya

    Some visually impaired children have difficulty in simple locomotion, and need orientation and mobility training. We developed a computer assisted instruction system which assists this training. A user realizes a task given by a tactile map and synthesized speech. The user walks around a room according to the task. The system gives the gap of walk path from its target path via both auditory and tactile feedback after the end of a task. Then the user can understand how well the user walked. We describe the detail of the proposed system and task, and the experimental result with three visually impaired children.

  9. Long-Term Visual Training Increases Visual Acuity and Long-Term Monocular Deprivation Promotes Ocular Dominance Plasticity in Adult Standard Cage-Raised Mice

    OpenAIRE

    Hosang, Leon; Yusifov, Rashad; Löwel, Siegrid

    2018-01-01

    Abstract For routine behavioral tasks, mice predominantly rely on olfactory cues and tactile information. In contrast, their visual capabilities appear rather restricted, raising the question whether they can improve if vision gets more behaviorally relevant. We therefore performed long-term training using the visual water task (VWT): adult standard cage (SC)-raised mice were trained to swim toward a rewarded grating stimulus so that using visual information avoided excessive swimming toward ...

  10. Modulation of Corticospinal Excitability Depends on the Pattern of Mechanical Tactile Stimulation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sho Kojima

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available We investigated the effects of different patterns of mechanical tactile stimulation (MS on corticospinal excitability by measuring the motor-evoked potential (MEP. This was a single-blind study that included nineteen healthy subjects. MS was applied for 20 min to the right index finger. MS intervention was defined as simple, lateral, rubbing, vertical, or random. Simple intervention stimulated the entire finger pad at the same time. Lateral intervention stimulated with moving between left and right on the finger pad. Rubbing intervention stimulated with moving the stimulus probe, fixed by protrusion pins. Vertical intervention stimulated with moving in the forward and backward directions on the finger pad. Random intervention stimulated to finger pad with either row protrudes. MEPs were measured in the first dorsal interosseous muscle to transcranial magnetic stimulation of the left motor cortex before, immediately after, and 5–20 min after intervention. Following simple intervention, MEP amplitudes were significantly smaller than preintervention, indicating depression of corticospinal excitability. Following lateral, rubbing, and vertical intervention, MEP amplitudes were significantly larger than preintervention, indicating facilitation of corticospinal excitability. The modulation of corticospinal excitability depends on MS patterns. These results contribute to knowledge regarding the use of MS as a neurorehabilitation tool to neurological disorder.

  11. Modulation of Corticospinal Excitability Depends on the Pattern of Mechanical Tactile Stimulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kojima, Sho; Onishi, Hideaki; Miyaguchi, Shota; Kotan, Shinichi; Sasaki, Ryoki; Nakagawa, Masaki; Kirimoto, Hikari; Tamaki, Hiroyuki

    2018-01-01

    We investigated the effects of different patterns of mechanical tactile stimulation (MS) on corticospinal excitability by measuring the motor-evoked potential (MEP). This was a single-blind study that included nineteen healthy subjects. MS was applied for 20 min to the right index finger. MS intervention was defined as simple, lateral, rubbing, vertical, or random. Simple intervention stimulated the entire finger pad at the same time. Lateral intervention stimulated with moving between left and right on the finger pad. Rubbing intervention stimulated with moving the stimulus probe, fixed by protrusion pins. Vertical intervention stimulated with moving in the forward and backward directions on the finger pad. Random intervention stimulated to finger pad with either row protrudes. MEPs were measured in the first dorsal interosseous muscle to transcranial magnetic stimulation of the left motor cortex before, immediately after, and 5-20 min after intervention. Following simple intervention, MEP amplitudes were significantly smaller than preintervention, indicating depression of corticospinal excitability. Following lateral, rubbing, and vertical intervention, MEP amplitudes were significantly larger than preintervention, indicating facilitation of corticospinal excitability. The modulation of corticospinal excitability depends on MS patterns. These results contribute to knowledge regarding the use of MS as a neurorehabilitation tool to neurological disorder.

  12. Common mechanisms of spatial attention in memory and perception: a tactile dual-task study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Katus, Tobias; Andersen, Søren K; Müller, Matthias M

    2014-03-01

    Orienting attention to locations in mnemonic representations engages processes that functionally and anatomically overlap the neural circuitry guiding prospective shifts of spatial attention. The attention-based rehearsal account predicts that the requirement to withdraw attention from a memorized location impairs memory accuracy. In a dual-task study, we simultaneously presented retro-cues and pre-cues to guide spatial attention in short-term memory (STM) and perception, respectively. The spatial direction of each cue was independent of the other. The locations indicated by the combined cues could be compatible (same hand) or incompatible (opposite hands). Incompatible directional cues decreased lateralized activity in brain potentials evoked by visual cues, indicating interference in the generation of prospective attention shifts. The detection of external stimuli at the prospectively cued location was impaired when the memorized location was part of the perceptually ignored hand. The disruption of attention-based rehearsal by means of incompatible pre-cues reduced memory accuracy and affected encoding of tactile test stimuli at the retrospectively cued hand. These findings highlight the functional significance of spatial attention for spatial STM. The bidirectional interactions between both tasks demonstrate that spatial attention is a shared neural resource of a capacity-limited system that regulates information processing in internal and external stimulus representations.

  13. Maintenance of tactile short-term memory for locations is mediated by spatial attention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Katus, Tobias; Andersen, Søren K; Müller, Matthias M

    2012-01-01

    According to the attention-based rehearsal hypothesis, maintenance of spatial information is mediated by covert orienting towards memorized locations. In a somatosensory memory task, participants simultaneously received bilateral pairs of mechanical sample pulses. For each hand, sample stimuli were randomly assigned to one of three locations (fingers). A subsequent visual retro-cue determined whether the left or right hand sample was to be memorized. The retro-cue elicited lateralized activity reflecting the location of the relevant sample stimulus. Sensory processing during the retention period was probed by task-irrelevant pulses randomized to locations at the cued and uncued hand. The somatosensory N140 was enhanced for probes delivered to the cued hand, relative to uncued. Probes presented shortly after the retro-cue showed greatest attentional modulations. This suggests that transient contributions from retrospective selection overlapped with the sustained effect of attention-based rehearsal. In conclusion, focal attention shifts within tactile mnemonic content occurred after retro-cues and guided sensory processing during retention. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. A flexible tactile sensitive sheet using a hetero-core fiber optic sensor

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fujino, S.; Yamazaki, H.; Hosoki, A.; Watanabe, K.

    2014-05-01

    In this report, we have designed a tactile sensitive sheet based on a hetero-core fiber-optic sensor, which realize an areal sensing by using single sensor potion in one optical fiber line. Recently, flexible and wide-area tactile sensing technology is expected to applied to acquired biological information in living space and robot achieve long-term care services such as welfare and nursing-care and humanoid technology. A hetero-core fiber-optic sensor has several advantages such as thin and flexible transmission line, immunity to EMI. Additionally this sensor is sensitive to moderate bending actions with optical loss changes and is independent of temperature fluctuation. Thus, the hetero-core fiber-optic sensor can be suitable for areal tactile sensing. We measure pressure characteristic of the proposed sensitive sheet by changing the pressure position and pinching characteristic on the surface. The proposed tactile sensitive sheet shows monotonic responses on the whole sensitive sheet surface although different sensitivity by the position is observed at the sensitive sheet surface. Moreover, the tactile sensitive sheet could sufficiently detect the pinching motion. In addition, in order to realize the discrimination between pressure and pinch, we fabricated a doubled-over sensor using a set of tactile sensitive sheets, which has different kinds of silicon robbers as a sensitive sheet surface. In conclusion, the flexible material could be given to the tactile sensation which is attached under proposed sensitive sheet.

  15. Feeling music: integration of auditory and tactile inputs in musical meter perception.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Juan; Gamble, Darik; Sarnlertsophon, Kristine; Wang, Xiaoqin; Hsiao, Steven

    2012-01-01

    Musicians often say that they not only hear, but also "feel" music. To explore the contribution of tactile information in "feeling" musical rhythm, we investigated the degree that auditory and tactile inputs are integrated in humans performing a musical meter recognition task. Subjects discriminated between two types of sequences, 'duple' (march-like rhythms) and 'triple' (waltz-like rhythms) presented in three conditions: 1) Unimodal inputs (auditory or tactile alone), 2) Various combinations of bimodal inputs, where sequences were distributed between the auditory and tactile channels such that a single channel did not produce coherent meter percepts, and 3) Simultaneously presented bimodal inputs where the two channels contained congruent or incongruent meter cues. We first show that meter is perceived similarly well (70%-85%) when tactile or auditory cues are presented alone. We next show in the bimodal experiments that auditory and tactile cues are integrated to produce coherent meter percepts. Performance is high (70%-90%) when all of the metrically important notes are assigned to one channel and is reduced to 60% when half of these notes are assigned to one channel. When the important notes are presented simultaneously to both channels, congruent cues enhance meter recognition (90%). Performance drops dramatically when subjects were presented with incongruent auditory cues (10%), as opposed to incongruent tactile cues (60%), demonstrating that auditory input dominates meter perception. We believe that these results are the first demonstration of cross-modal sensory grouping between any two senses.

  16. Design Methodology for Magnetic Field-Based Soft Tri-Axis Tactile Sensors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Hongbo; de Boer, Greg; Kow, Junwai; Alazmani, Ali; Ghajari, Mazdak; Hewson, Robert; Culmer, Peter

    2016-08-24

    Tactile sensors are essential if robots are to safely interact with the external world and to dexterously manipulate objects. Current tactile sensors have limitations restricting their use, notably being too fragile or having limited performance. Magnetic field-based soft tactile sensors offer a potential improvement, being durable, low cost, accurate and high bandwidth, but they are relatively undeveloped because of the complexities involved in design and calibration. This paper presents a general design methodology for magnetic field-based three-axis soft tactile sensors, enabling researchers to easily develop specific tactile sensors for a variety of applications. All aspects (design, fabrication, calibration and evaluation) of the development of tri-axis soft tactile sensors are presented and discussed. A moving least square approach is used to decouple and convert the magnetic field signal to force output to eliminate non-linearity and cross-talk effects. A case study of a tactile sensor prototype, MagOne, was developed. This achieved a resolution of 1.42 mN in normal force measurement (0.71 mN in shear force), good output repeatability and has a maximum hysteresis error of 3.4%. These results outperform comparable sensors reported previously, highlighting the efficacy of our methodology for sensor design.

  17. Sleeping on the rubber-hand illusion: Memory reactivation during sleep facilitates multisensory recalibration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Honma, Motoyasu; Plass, John; Brang, David; Florczak, Susan M; Grabowecky, Marcia; Paller, Ken A

    2016-01-01

    Plasticity is essential in body perception so that physical changes in the body can be accommodated and assimilated. Multisensory integration of visual, auditory, tactile, and proprioceptive signals contributes both to conscious perception of the body's current state and to associated learning. However, much is unknown about how novel information is assimilated into body perception networks in the brain. Sleep-based consolidation can facilitate various types of learning via the reactivation of networks involved in prior encoding or through synaptic down-scaling. Sleep may likewise contribute to perceptual learning of bodily information by providing an optimal time for multisensory recalibration. Here we used methods for targeted memory reactivation (TMR) during slow-wave sleep to examine the influence of sleep-based reactivation of experimentally induced alterations in body perception. The rubber-hand illusion was induced with concomitant auditory stimulation in 24 healthy participants on 3 consecutive days. While each participant was sleeping in his or her own bed during intervening nights, electrophysiological detection of slow-wave sleep prompted covert stimulation with either the sound heard during illusion induction, a counterbalanced novel sound, or neither. TMR systematically enhanced feelings of bodily ownership after subsequent inductions of the rubber-hand illusion. TMR also enhanced spatial recalibration of perceived hand location in the direction of the rubber hand. This evidence for a sleep-based facilitation of a body-perception illusion demonstrates that the spatial recalibration of multisensory signals can be altered overnight to stabilize new learning of bodily representations. Sleep-based memory processing may thus constitute a fundamental component of body-image plasticity.

  18. 3D Printing Technologies for Flexible Tactile Sensors toward Wearable Electronics and Electronic Skin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Changyong Liu

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available 3D printing has attracted a lot of attention in recent years. Over the past three decades, various 3D printing technologies have been developed including photopolymerization-based, materials extrusion-based, sheet lamination-based, binder jetting-based, power bed fusion-based and direct energy deposition-based processes. 3D printing offers unparalleled flexibility and simplicity in the fabrication of highly complex 3D objects. Tactile sensors that emulate human tactile perceptions are used to translate mechanical signals such as force, pressure, strain, shear, torsion, bend, vibration, etc. into electrical signals and play a crucial role toward the realization of wearable electronics and electronic skin. To date, many types of 3D printing technologies have been applied in the manufacturing of various types of tactile sensors including piezoresistive, capacitive and piezoelectric sensors. This review attempts to summarize the current state-of-the-art 3D printing technologies and their applications in tactile sensors for wearable electronics and electronic skin. The applications are categorized into five aspects: 3D-printed molds for microstructuring substrate, electrodes and sensing element; 3D-printed flexible sensor substrate and sensor body for tactile sensors; 3D-printed sensing element; 3D-printed flexible and stretchable electrodes for tactile sensors; and fully 3D-printed tactile sensors. Latest advances in the fabrication of tactile sensors by 3D printing are reviewed and the advantages and limitations of various 3D printing technologies and printable materials are discussed. Finally, future development of 3D-printed tactile sensors is discussed.

  19. Contextual cueing of tactile search is coded in an anatomical reference frame.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Assumpção, Leonardo; Shi, Zhuanghua; Zang, Xuelian; Müller, Hermann J; Geyer, Thomas

    2018-04-01

    This work investigates the reference frame(s) underlying tactile context memory, a form of statistical learning in a tactile (finger) search task. In this task, if a searched-for target object is repeatedly encountered within a stable spatial arrangement of task-irrelevant distractors, detecting the target becomes more efficient over time (relative to nonrepeated arrangements), as learned target-distractor spatial associations come to guide tactile search, thus cueing attention to the target location. Since tactile search displays can be represented in several reference frames, including multiple external and an anatomical frame, in Experiment 1 we asked whether repeated search displays are represented in tactile memory with reference to an environment-centered or anatomical reference frame. In Experiment 2, we went on examining a hand-centered versus anatomical reference frame of tactile context memory. Observers performed a tactile search task, divided into a learning and test session. At the transition between the two sessions, we introduced postural manipulations of the hands (crossed ↔ uncrossed in Expt. 1; palm-up ↔ palm-down in Expt. 2) to determine the reference frame of tactile contextual cueing. In both experiments, target-distractor associations acquired during learning transferred to the test session when the placement of the target and distractors was held constant in anatomical, but not external, coordinates. In the latter, RTs were even slower for repeated displays. We conclude that tactile contextual learning is coded in an anatomical reference frame. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2018 APA, all rights reserved).

  20. A silicon-based flexible tactile sensor for ubiquitous robot companion applications

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kim, Kunnyun; Lee, Kang Ryeol; Lee, Dae Sung; Cho, Nam-Kyu; Kim, Won Hyo; Park, Kwang-Bum; Park, Hyo-Derk; Kim, Yong Kook; Park, Yon-Kyu; Kim, Jong-Ho

    2006-01-01

    We present the fabrication process and characteristics of a 3-axes flexible tactile sensor available for normal and shear mode fabricated using Si micromachining and packaging technologies. The fabrication processes for the 3 axes flexible tactile sensor were classified in the fabrication of sensor chips and their packaging on the flexible PCB. The variation rate of resistance was about 2.1%/N and 0.5%/N in applying normal and shear force, respectively. Because this tactile sensor can measure the variations of resistance of the semiconductor strain gauge for normal and shear force, it can be used to sense touch, pressure, hardness, and slip

  1. Design of a Large-scale Three-dimensional Flexible Arrayed Tactile Sensor

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Junxiang Ding

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper proposes a new type of large-scale three-dimensional flexible arrayed tactile sensor based on conductive rubber. It can be used to detect three-dimensional force information on the continuous surface of the sensor, which realizes a true skin type tactile sensor. The widely used method of liquid rubber injection molding (LIMS method is used for "the overall injection molding" sample preparation. The structure details of staggered nodes and a new decoupling algorithm of force analysis are given. Simulation results show that the sensor based on this structure can achieve flexible measurement of large-scale 3-D tactile sensor arrays.

  2. Use of early tactile stimulation in rehabilitation of digital nerve injuries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, A S

    2000-01-01

    Digital nerves are the most frequently injured peripheral nerve. To improve the recovery of functional sensibility of digital nerve injuries, a prospective randomized controlled study was conducted to see the effect of using early tactile stimulation in rehabilitation of digital nerve injuries. Two specific tactile stimulators were made and prescribed for patients with digital nerve-injury. Twenty-four participants with 32 digital nerve injuries received the prescribed tactile stimulators (experimental group), and another 25 participants with 33 digital nerve injuries received only routine conventional therapy (control group). A significant difference (p sensibility in digital nerve injuries without combined nerve, tendon, and bone injuries.

  3. [Advances in the research of function of Merkel cells in tactile formation of skin].

    Science.gov (United States)

    You, X; Wei, Z R

    2018-01-20

    Skin is the largest sense organ of human, with many mechanoreceptor cells under epidermis or dermis of skin and Merkel cell is one of them. It has been confirmed that Merkel cells play an important role in the process of mechanical transmission of mammalian soft tactile stimulation. Researches showed that Merkel cells had close relation to tactile formation and functioned by Merkel cell-neurite complexes and ion channels Piezo2. This article reviews Merkel cells and the function, problem and prospect of Merkel cells in tactile formation.

  4. Rapid and reversible recruitment of early visual cortex for touch.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lotfi B Merabet

    2008-08-01

    Full Text Available The loss of vision has been associated with enhanced performance in non-visual tasks such as tactile discrimination and sound localization. Current evidence suggests that these functional gains are linked to the recruitment of the occipital visual cortex for non-visual processing, but the neurophysiological mechanisms underlying these crossmodal changes remain uncertain. One possible explanation is that visual deprivation is associated with an unmasking of non-visual input into visual cortex.We investigated the effect of sudden, complete and prolonged visual deprivation (five days in normally sighted adult individuals while they were immersed in an intensive tactile training program. Following the five-day period, blindfolded subjects performed better on a Braille character discrimination task. In the blindfold group, serial fMRI scans revealed an increase in BOLD signal within the occipital cortex in response to tactile stimulation after five days of complete visual deprivation. This increase in signal was no longer present 24 hours after blindfold removal. Finally, reversible disruption of occipital cortex function on the fifth day (by repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation; rTMS impaired Braille character recognition ability in the blindfold group but not in non-blindfolded controls. This disruptive effect was no longer evident once the blindfold had been removed for 24 hours.Overall, our findings suggest that sudden and complete visual deprivation in normally sighted individuals can lead to profound, but rapidly reversible, neuroplastic changes by which the occipital cortex becomes engaged in processing of non-visual information. The speed and dynamic nature of the observed changes suggests that normally inhibited or masked functions in the sighted are revealed by visual loss. The unmasking of pre-existing connections and shifts in connectivity represent rapid, early plastic changes, which presumably can lead, if sustained and

  5. Reflexive Learning through Visual Methods

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Frølunde, Lisbeth

    2014-01-01

    What. This chapter concerns how visual methods and visual materials can support visually oriented, collaborative, and creative learning processes in education. The focus is on facilitation (guiding, teaching) with visual methods in learning processes that are designerly or involve design. Visual...... methods are exemplified through two university classroom cases about collaborative idea generation processes. The visual methods and materials in the cases are photo elicitation using photo cards, and modeling with LEGO Serious Play sets. Why. The goal is to encourage the reader, whether student...... or professional, to facilitate with visual methods in a critical, reflective, and experimental way. The chapter offers recommendations for facilitating with visual methods to support playful, emergent designerly processes. The chapter also has a critical, situated perspective. Where. This chapter offers case...

  6. A Portable Piezoelectric Tactile Terminal for Braille Readers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ramiro Velázquez

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper introduces a novel concept on reading assistive technologies for the blind: the TactoBook, a system that is able to translate entire electronic books (eBooks to Braille code and to reproduce them in portable electronic Braille terminals. The TactoBook consists of a computer-based translator that converts fast and automatically any eBook into Braille. The Braille version of the eBook is then encrypted as a file and stored in a USB memory drive which is later inserted and reproduced in a compact, lightweight, and highly-portable tactile terminal. In particular, this paper presents a piezoelectric ultrasonic actuation approach to design and implement such portable Braille terminal. Actuating mechanism, design concept, first prototype, and performance results are presented and discussed.

  7. Tactile Architectural Models as Universal ‘Urban Furniture’

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kłopotowska, Agnieszka

    2017-10-01

    Tactile architectural models and maquettes have been built in the external public spaces of Polish cities since the latter half of the 00s of the 21st century. These objects are designed for the blind, but also other people - tourists, children, and those who arrive in wheelchairs. This collection has got currently more than 70 implements, which places Poland in the group of European leaders. Unfortunately, this “furniture”, is not always “convenient” and safe for all recipients. Studies, which have been conducted together with Maciej Kłopotowski since 2016 across the country, show a number of serious design and executive mistakes or examples of misuse. The purpose of this article is drawing attention to these issues and pointing out ways how they can be avoided. These objects may become completely valuable, universal tool for learning and a great way of studying architecture in an alternative way.

  8. Tactile feedback display with spatial and temporal resolutions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vishniakou, Siarhei; Lewis, Brian W; Niu, Xiaofan; Kargar, Alireza; Sun, Ke; Kalajian, Michael; Park, Namseok; Yang, Muchuan; Jing, Yi; Brochu, Paul; Sun, Zhelin; Li, Chun; Nguyen, Truong; Pei, Qibing; Wang, Deli

    2013-01-01

    We report the electronic recording of the touch contact and pressure using an active matrix pressure sensor array made of transparent zinc oxide thin-film transistors and tactile feedback display using an array of diaphragm actuators made of an interpenetrating polymer elastomer network. Digital replay, editing and manipulation of the recorded touch events were demonstrated with both spatial and temporal resolutions. Analog reproduction of the force is also shown possible using the polymer actuators, despite of the high driving voltage. The ability to record, store, edit, and replay touch information adds an additional dimension to digital technologies and extends the capabilities of modern information exchange with the potential to revolutionize physical learning, social networking, e-commerce, robotics, gaming, medical and military applications.

  9. Tapered whiskers are required for active tactile sensation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hires, Samuel Andrew; Pammer, Lorenz; Svoboda, Karel; Golomb, David

    2013-11-19

    Many mammals forage and burrow in dark constrained spaces. Touch through facial whiskers is important during these activities, but the close quarters makes whisker deployment challenging. The diverse shapes of facial whiskers reflect distinct ecological niches. Rodent whiskers are conical, often with a remarkably linear taper. Here we use theoretical and experimental methods to analyze interactions of mouse whiskers with objects. When pushed into objects, conical whiskers suddenly slip at a critical angle. In contrast, cylindrical whiskers do not slip for biologically plausible movements. Conical whiskers sweep across objects and textures in characteristic sequences of brief sticks and slips, which provide information about the tactile world. In contrast, cylindrical whiskers stick and remain stuck, even when sweeping across fine textures. Thus the conical whisker structure is adaptive for sensor mobility in constrained environments and in feature extraction during active haptic exploration of objects and surfaces. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.01350.001.

  10. Tactile Feedback Display with Spatial and Temporal Resolutions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vishniakou, Siarhei; Lewis, Brian W.; Niu, Xiaofan; Kargar, Alireza; Sun, Ke; Kalajian, Michael; Park, Namseok; Yang, Muchuan; Jing, Yi; Brochu, Paul; Sun, Zhelin; Li, Chun; Nguyen, Truong; Pei, Qibing; Wang, Deli

    2013-08-01

    We report the electronic recording of the touch contact and pressure using an active matrix pressure sensor array made of transparent zinc oxide thin-film transistors and tactile feedback display using an array of diaphragm actuators made of an interpenetrating polymer elastomer network. Digital replay, editing and manipulation of the recorded touch events were demonstrated with both spatial and temporal resolutions. Analog reproduction of the force is also shown possible using the polymer actuators, despite of the high driving voltage. The ability to record, store, edit, and replay touch information adds an additional dimension to digital technologies and extends the capabilities of modern information exchange with the potential to revolutionize physical learning, social networking, e-commerce, robotics, gaming, medical and military applications.

  11. The Impact of Visual Cues and Service Behavior on the Consumer Retail Experience

    OpenAIRE

    Bjerk, Taylor

    2015-01-01

    With product differentiation low in the retail industry, businesses need to create strong brand images and increase customer loyalty in order to remain competitive. Visual merchandising is one tool that businesses have to communicate their message in a compelling and strategic manner. Within the scope of visual merchandising there are a number of atmospherics, or cues, which include visual, tactile, and auditory, that can be used in conjunction with one another to influence consumer behavior....

  12. Hysteresis as an Implicit Prior in Tactile Spatial Decision Making

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thiel, Sabrina D.; Bitzer, Sebastian; Nierhaus, Till; Kalberlah, Christian; Preusser, Sven; Neumann, Jane; Nikulin, Vadim V.; van der Meer, Elke; Villringer, Arno; Pleger, Burkhard

    2014-01-01

    Perceptual decisions not only depend on the incoming information from sensory systems but constitute a combination of current sensory evidence and internally accumulated information from past encounters. Although recent evidence emphasizes the fundamental role of prior knowledge for perceptual decision making, only few studies have quantified the relevance of such priors on perceptual decisions and examined their interplay with other decision-relevant factors, such as the stimulus properties. In the present study we asked whether hysteresis, describing the stability of a percept despite a change in stimulus property and known to occur at perceptual thresholds, also acts as a form of an implicit prior in tactile spatial decision making, supporting the stability of a decision across successively presented random stimuli (i.e., decision hysteresis). We applied a variant of the classical 2-point discrimination task and found that hysteresis influenced perceptual decision making: Participants were more likely to decide ‘same’ rather than ‘different’ on successively presented pin distances. In a direct comparison between the influence of applied pin distances (explicit stimulus property) and hysteresis, we found that on average, stimulus property explained significantly more variance of participants’ decisions than hysteresis. However, when focusing on pin distances at threshold, we found a trend for hysteresis to explain more variance. Furthermore, the less variance was explained by the pin distance on a given decision, the more variance was explained by hysteresis, and vice versa. Our findings suggest that hysteresis acts as an implicit prior in tactile spatial decision making that becomes increasingly important when explicit stimulus properties provide decreasing evidence. PMID:24587045

  13. A novel flexible tactile sensor based on Ce-doped BaTiO3 nanofibers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhuang, Yongyong; Xu, Zhuo; Fu, Xiaotian; Li, Fei; Li, Jinglei; Liao, Zhipeng; Liu, Weihua

    2017-07-01

    The performance of a robotic hand is severely limited by the tactile feedback information similar to a human hand. Hence, a novel and robust tactile sensor has been developed to cope with the challenge of robotic hand technology. Piezoelectric material is proposed as a suitable candidate for a new efficient tactile sensor due to its excellent piezoelectric properties. In this paper, a novel flexible tactile sensor based on Ce-doped BTO nanofibers was developed. The doping mechanism of cerium ions and the working process of the sensor were analysed. The results showed that sheer stress had no contribution to the sensor, this indicated that the sensor was easy to control according to the individual’s wish. The output voltage of the sensor could reach up to 0.078 V which showed great potential for the future of intelligent robot skin application.

  14. The Effect of Tactile Cues on Auditory Stream Segregation Ability of Musicians and Nonmusicians

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Slater, Kyle D.; Marozeau, Jeremy

    2016-01-01

    Difficulty perceiving music is often cited as one of the main problems facing hearing-impaired listeners. It has been suggested that musical enjoyment could be enhanced if sound information absent due to impairment is transmitted via other sensory modalities such as vision or touch. In this study...... the random melody. Tactile cues were applied to the listener’s fingers on half of the blocks. Results showed that tactile cues can significantly improve the melodic segregation ability in both musician and nonmusician groups in challenging listening conditions. Overall, the musician group performance...... was always better; however, the magnitude of improvement with the introduction of tactile cues was similar in both groups. This study suggests that hearing-impaired listeners could potentially benefit from a system transmitting such information via a tactile modality...

  15. A Dexterity and Tactility Evaluation of the Australian Nuclear Biological Chemical (NBC) Glove

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Scanlan, S

    2004-01-01

    This report details the tactility and dexterity of four different glove types, including the Australian in-service NBC butyl rubber glove and Nomex flying glove for standardized (Purdue pegboard) and operational...

  16. Task demands affect spatial reference frame weighting during tactile localization in sighted and congenitally blind adults

    OpenAIRE

    Heed, Tobias; Roeder, Brigitte; Badde, Stephanie; Schubert, Jonathan

    2017-01-01

    Task demands modulate tactile localization in sighted humans, presumably through weight adjustments in the spatial integration of anatomical, skin-based, and external, posture-based information. In contrast, previous studies have suggested that congenitally blind humans, by default, refrain from automatic spatial integration and localize touch using only skin-based information. Here, sighted and congenitally blind participants localized tactile targets on the palm or back of one hand, while i...

  17. Vagus nerve stimulation paired with tactile training improved sensory function in a chronic stroke patient.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kilgard, Michael P; Rennaker, Robert L; Alexander, Jen; Dawson, Jesse

    2018-01-01

    Recent studies indicate that vagus nerve stimulation (VNS) paired with rehabilitation can enhance neural plasticity in the primary sensory and motor cortices, improve forelimb function after stroke in animal models and improve motor function in patients with arm weakness after stroke. To gain "first-in-man" experience of VNS paired with tactile training in a patient with severe sensory impairment after stroke. During the long-term follow-up phase of a clinical trial of VNS paired with motor rehabilitation, a 71-year-old man who had made good motor recovery had ongoing severe sensory loss in his left hand and arm. He received VNS paired with tactile therapy in an attempt to improve his sensory function. During twenty 2-hour sessions, each passive and active tactile event was paired with a 0.5 second burst of 0.8 mA VNS. Sensory function was measured before, halfway through, and after this therapy. The patient did not report any side effects during or following VNS+Tactile therapy. Quantitative measures revealed lasting and clinically meaningful improvements in tactile threshold, proprioception, and stereognosis. After VNS+Tactile therapy, the patient was able to detect tactile stimulation to his affected hand that was eight times less intense, identify the joint position of his fingers in the affected hand three times more often, and identify everyday objects using his affected hand seven times more often, compared to baseline. Sensory function significantly improved in this man following VNS paired with tactile stimulation. This approach merits further study in controlled clinical trials.

  18. The Design of a Novel Flexible Tactile Sensor Based on Pressure-conductive Rubber

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fei Xu

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available A novel flexible tactile sensor using conductive rubber with electrical-wires knitted method is presented. The sensor’s design is based on rubber’s pressure-sensitive property. It is flexible and can be mounted on any object to measure tactile information. The mathematic piezoresistivity model of the rubber is described, and we also discuss the sensor’s structure and scanning method. The simulation results show that the sensor can detect pressure accurately.

  19. “Learning-talks in science museums: how a visually impaired person interprets the educational material at the museum of microbiology”

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alessandra Fernandes Bizerra

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available The processes of science communication and science education became especially important in the last quarter of the last century. Science museums, as non-formal spaces have an important role in amplifying and refining these processes. Being spaces open to the general public will be expected to develop programs that include all of its citizens. The Museum of Microbiology of the Butantan Institute has developed a series of activities and educational materials focusing on microorganisms that were designed to facilitate a closer integration of the visually impaired public with the scientific culture. In the present study, we sought to understand how visually deficient visitors interpreted the materials presented, determine the level of understanding that the use of these materials provided and study the significance attributed to them. Visually impaired visitors were interviewed during their interactions with the materials with the aid of an audio guide, and the talks generated were analyzed within interpretative categories. The most frequent category was “Strategic talk (Use” (11.8%, in which the visually deficient visitors gave their opinions concerning the uses of the Micro-Touch Program. Two other categories, “Affective talk (Pleasure” (10.2% and “Perceptual talk (Identification” (8.6% were also established. A combination of tactile and auditory tools was fundamental to solve problems and to the creation of visual representations that are important to constructing and understanding scientific concepts and to facilitate the organization of theoretical thought. We suggest here the necessity of elaborating activities contents that favors the establishment of conceptual talks and considering the previously acquired knowledge of visually impaired visitors during the design of displays, providing higher frequency of other learning talks

  20. Tactile Perception of Roughness and Hardness to Discriminate Materials by Friction-Induced Vibration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shuyang Ding

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available The human fingertip is an exquisitely powerful bio-tactile sensor in perceiving different materials based on various highly-sensitive mechanoreceptors distributed all over the skin. The tactile perception of surface roughness and material hardness can be estimated by skin vibrations generated during a fingertip stroking of a surface instead of being maintained in a static position. Moreover, reciprocating sliding with increasing velocities and pressures are two common behaviors in humans to discriminate different materials, but the question remains as to what the correlation of the sliding velocity and normal load on the tactile perceptions of surface roughness and hardness is for material discrimination. In order to investigate this correlation, a finger-inspired crossed-I beam structure tactile tester has been designed to mimic the anthropic tactile discrimination behaviors. A novel method of characterizing the fast Fourier transform integral (FFT slope of the vibration acceleration signal generated from fingertip rubbing on surfaces at increasing sliding velocity and normal load, respectively, are defined as kv and kw, and is proposed to discriminate the surface roughness and hardness of different materials. Over eight types of materials were tested, and they proved the capability and advantages of this high tactile-discriminating method. Our study may find applications in investigating humanoid robot perceptual abilities.

  1. Tactile information processing in primate hand somatosensory cortex (S1) during passive arm movement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Song, Weiguo; Francis, Joseph Thachil

    2013-11-01

    Motor output mostly depends on sensory input, which also can be affected by action. To further our understanding of how tactile information is processed in the primary somatosensory cortex (S1) in dynamic environments, we recorded neural responses to tactile stimulation of the hand in three awake monkeys under arm/hand passive movement and rest. We found that neurons generally responded to tactile stimulation under both conditions and were modulated by movement: with a higher baseline firing rate, a suppressed peak rate, and a smaller dynamic range during passive movement than during rest, while the area under the response curve was stable across these two states. By using an information theory-based method, the mutual information between tactile stimulation and neural responses was quantified with rate and spatial coding models under the two conditions. The two potential encoding models showed different contributions depending on behavioral contexts. Tactile information encoded with rate coding from individual units was lower than spatial coding of unit pairs, especially during movement; however, spatial coding had redundant information between unit pairs. Passive movement regulated the mutual information, and such regulation might play different roles depending on the encoding strategies used. The underlying mechanisms of our observation most likely come from a bottom-up strategy, where neurons in S1 were regulated through the activation of the peripheral tactile/proprioceptive receptors and the interactions between these different types of information.

  2. Retention of high tactile acuity throughout the life span in blindness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Legge, Gordon E; Madison, Cindee; Vaughn, Brenna N; Cheong, Allen M Y; Miller, Joseph C

    2008-11-01

    Previous studies of tactile acuity on the fingertip, using passive touch, have demonstrated an age-related decline in spatial resolution for both sighted and blind subjects. We have reexamined this age dependence with two newly designed tactile-acuity charts that require active exploration of the test symbols. One chart used dot patterns similar to braille, and the other used embossed Landolt rings. Groups of blind braille readers and sighted subjects ranging from 12 to 85 years old were tested in two experiments. We replicated previous findings for sighted subjects by showing an age-related decrease in tactile acuity by nearly 1% per year. Surprisingly, the blind subjects retained high acuity into old age, showing no age-related decline. For the blind subjects, tactile acuity did not correlate with braille reading speed, the amount of daily reading, or the age at which braille was learned. We conclude that when measured with active touch, blind subjects retain high tactile acuity into old age, unlike their aging sighted peers. We propose that blind people's use of active touch in daily activities, not specifically braille reading, results in preservation of tactile acuity across the life span.

  3. Structural design and output characteristic analysis of magnetostrictive tactile sensor for robotic applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zheng, Wendong; Wang, Bowen; Liu, Huaping; Li, Yunkai; Zhao, Ran; Weng, Ling; Zhang, Changgeng

    2018-05-01

    A novel magnetostrictive tactile sensor has been designed according to the transduction mechanism of cilia and Villari effect of iron-gallium alloy. The tactile sensor consists of a Galfenol beam, a pair of permanent magnets, a Hall sensor and a signal processing system. Compared with the conventional tactile sensor, our proposed tactile sensor can not only detect the contact-force, but also sense stiffness of an object. The performance and measurement range of tactile sensor have theoretically been analyzed and experimentally investigated. The results have revealed that the sensibility of tactile sensor for sensing force is up to 22.81mV/N at applied bias magnetic field of 2.56kA/m. Moreover, the sensor can effectively discriminate objects with different stiffness. The sensor is characterized by high sensitivity, good linearity, and quick response. It has the potential of being miniaturized and integrated into the finger of a robotic hand to realize force sensing and object recognition in real-time.

  4. Tactile spatial acuity in childhood: effects of age and fingertip size.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ryan M Peters

    Full Text Available Tactile acuity is known to decline with age in adults, possibly as the result of receptor loss, but less is understood about how tactile acuity changes during childhood. Previous research from our laboratory has shown that fingertip size influences tactile spatial acuity in young adults: those with larger fingers tend to have poorer acuity, possibly because mechanoreceptors are more sparsely distributed in larger fingers. We hypothesized that a similar relationship would hold among children. If so, children's tactile spatial acuity might be expected to worsen as their fingertips grow. However, concomitant CNS maturation might result in more efficient perceptual processing, counteracting the effect of fingertip growth on tactile acuity. To investigate, we conducted a cross-sectional study, testing 116 participants ranging in age from 6 to 16 years on a precision-controlled tactile grating orientation task. We measured each participant's grating orientation threshold on the dominant index finger, along with physical properties of the fingertip: surface area, volume, sweat pore spacing, and temperature. We found that, as in adults, children with larger fingertips (at a given age had significantly poorer acuity, yet paradoxically acuity did not worsen significantly with age. We propose that finger growth during development results in a gradual decline in innervation density as receptive fields reposition to cover an expanding skin surface. At the same time, central maturation presumably enhances perceptual processing.

  5. C-Tactile Mediated Erotic Touch Perception Relates to Sexual Desire and Performance in a Gender-Specific Way.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bendas, Johanna; Georgiadis, Janniko R; Ritschel, Gerhard; Olausson, Håkan; Weidner, Kerstin; Croy, Ilona

    2017-05-01

    Unmyelinated low-threshold mechanoreceptors-the so-called C-tactile (CT) afferents-play a crucial role in the perception and conduction of caressing and pleasant touch sensations and significantly contribute to the concept of erotic touch perception. To investigate the relations between sexual desire and sexual performance and the perception of touch mediated by CT afferents. Seventy healthy participants (28 men, 42 women; mean age ± SD = 24.84 ± 4.08 years, range = 18-36 years) underwent standardized and highly controlled stroking stimulation that varied in the amount of CT fiber stimulation by changing stroking velocity (CT optimal = 1, 3 and 10 cm/s; CT suboptimal = 0.1, 0.3, and 30 cm/s). Participants rated the perceived pleasantness, eroticism, and intensity of the applied tactile stimulation on a visual analog scale, completed the Sexual Desire Inventory, and answered questions about sexual performance. Ratings of perceived eroticism of touch were related to self-report levels of sexual desire and sexual performance. Pleasantness and eroticism ratings showed similar dependence on stroking velocity that aligned with the activity of CT afferents. Erotic touch perception was related to sexual desire and sexual performance in a gender-specific way. In women, differences in eroticism ratings between CT optimal and suboptimal velocities correlated positively with desire for sexual interaction. In contrast, in men, this difference correlated to a decreased frequency and longer duration of partnered sexual activities. The present results lay the foundation for future research assessing these relations in patients with specific impairments of sexual functioning (eg, hypoactive sexual desire disorder). The strength of the study is the combination of standardized neurophysiologic methods and behavioral data. A clear limitation of the study design is the exclusion of exact data on the female menstrual cycle and the recruitment of an inhomogeneous sample

  6. Data Visualization: Conversion of Data to Animation Files

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Kimbler, Nate

    2004-01-01

    .... Because visualization tools are vital to understanding complex physical phenomena, these visualization tools attempt to facilitate converting data into animations that can be saved and used in data...

  7. Stimulus-dependent effects on tactile spatial acuity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tommerdahl M

    2005-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Previous studies have shown that spatio-tactile acuity is influenced by the clarity of the cortical response in primary somatosensory cortex (SI. Stimulus characteristics such as frequency, amplitude, and location of tactile stimuli presented to the skin have been shown to have a significant effect on the response in SI. The present study observes the effect of changing stimulus parameters of 25 Hz sinusoidal vertical skin displacement stimulation ("flutter" on a human subject's ability to discriminate between two adjacent or near-adjacent skin sites. Based on results obtained from recent neurophysiological studies of the SI response to different conditions of vibrotactile stimulation, we predicted that the addition of 200 Hz vibration to the same site that a two-point flutter stimulus was delivered on the skin would improve a subject's spatio-tactile acuity over that measured with flutter alone. Additionally, similar neurophysiological studies predict that the presence of either a 25 Hz flutter or 200 Hz vibration stimulus on the unattended hand (on the opposite side of the body from the site of two-point limen testing – the condition of bilateral stimulation – which has been shown to evoke less SI cortical activity than the contralateral-only stimulus condition would decrease a subject's ability to discriminate between two points on the skin. Results A Bekesy tracking method was employed to track a subject's ability to discriminate between two-point stimuli delivered to the skin. The distance between the two points of stimulation was varied on a trial-by-trial basis, and several different stimulus conditions were examined: (1 The "control" condition, in which 25 Hz flutter stimuli were delivered simultaneously to the two points on the skin of the attended hand, (2 the "complex" condition, in which a combination of 25 Hz flutter and 200 Hz vibration stimuli were delivered to the two points on the attended hand, and (3 a

  8. Prevalence of increases in functional connectivity in visual, somatosensory and language areas in congenital blindness

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Heine, Lizette; Bahri, Mohamed A; Cavaliere, Carlo

    2015-01-01

    stronger functional connectivity in blind participants between the visual ROIs and areas implicated in language and tactile (Braille) processing such as the inferior frontal gyrus (Broca's area), thalamus, supramarginal gyrus and cerebellum. The observed group differences underscore the extent of the cross...

  9. Visual soil evaluation and soil compaction research

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    M.L. Guimarães, Rachel; Keller, Thomas; Munkholm, Lars Juhl

    2017-01-01

    Following on from discussions that took place during the 19th International Conference of the International Soil Tillage Research Organization (ISTRO) in Montevideo, Uruguay, in 2012, the ISTRO working groups “Visual Soil Examination and Evaluation” (VSEE) and “Subsoil Compaction” decided...... to organize a joint workshop. The present special issue is an outcome from the workshop on “Soil structural quality of tropical soils: Visual evaluation methods and soil compaction prevention strategies” that was held 26–29 May 2014 in Maringá, Paraná, Brazil. There has been a long-lasting interest in Visual...... Soil Evaluation (VSE). An ISTRO working group was established more than 30 years ago with the objectives to exchange knowledge and experiences on field methods of visual-tactile soil assessment and to foster international cooperation on new or refined methods. The three previous meeting of the group...

  10. The Impact of Visual Communication on the Intersubjective Development of Early Parent?Child Interaction with 18- to 24-Month-Old Deaf Toddlers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loots, Gerrit; Devise, Isabel; Jacquet, Wolfgang

    2005-01-01

    This article presents a study that examined the impact of visual communication on the quality of the early interaction between deaf and hearing mothers and fathers and their deaf children aged between 18 and 24 months. Three communication mode groups of parent?deaf child dyads that differed by the use of signing and visual?tactile communication…

  11. Human detection and discrimination of tactile repeatability, mechanical backlash, and temporal delay in a combined tactile-kinesthetic haptic display system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doxon, Andrew J; Johnson, David E; Tan, Hong Z; Provancher, William R

    2013-01-01

    Many of the devices used in haptics research are over-engineered for the task and are designed with capabilities that go far beyond human perception levels. Designing devices that more closely match the limits of human perception will make them smaller, less expensive, and more useful. However, many device-centric perception thresholds have yet to be evaluated. To this end, three experiments were conducted, using one degree-of-freedom contact location feedback device in combination with a kinesthetic display, to provide a more explicit set of specifications for similar tactile-kinesthetic haptic devices. The first of these experiments evaluated the ability of humans to repeatedly localize tactile cues across the fingerpad. Subjects could localize cues to within 1.3 mm and showed bias toward the center of the fingerpad. The second experiment evaluated the minimum perceptible difference of backlash at the tactile element. Subjects were able to discriminate device backlash in excess of 0.46 mm on low-curvature models and 0.93 mm on high-curvature models. The last experiment evaluated the minimum perceptible difference of system delay between user action and device reaction. Subjects were able to discriminate delays in excess of 61 ms. The results from these studies can serve as the maximum (i.e., most demanding) device specifications for most tactile-kinesthetic haptic systems.

  12. FlyTact : A tactile display improves a helicopter pilot's landing performance in degraded visual environments

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jansen, C.; Wennemers, A.S.; Vos, W.K.; Groen, E.L.

    2008-01-01

    Helicopter landings are more challenging in 'brownout' conditions, in which sand and dust is stirred up by the rotary wing aircraft, obscuring visibility. Safe brownout landings require new sensor and display technologies to provide the pilot with information on helicopter motion. In this respect

  13. Modality-Constrained Statistical Learning of Tactile, Visual, and Auditory Sequences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Conway, Christopher M.; Christiansen, Morten H.

    2005-01-01

    The authors investigated the extent to which touch, vision, and audition mediate the processing of statistical regularities within sequential input. Few researchers have conducted rigorous comparisons across sensory modalities; in particular, the sense of touch has been virtually ignored. The current data reveal not only commonalities but also…

  14. Effects of Visual, Auditory, and Tactile Alerts on Platoon Leader Performance and Decision Making

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Krausman, Andrea S; Elliott, Linda R; Pettitt, Rodger A

    2005-01-01

    ... the high operational tempo, uncertainty, and stress of combat. Past research suggests that multi-sensory information display may be an effective technique for enhancing the information management and situational understanding of Soldiers...

  15. Tactile display landing safety and precision improvements for the Space Shuttle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olson, John M.

    A tactile display belt using 24 electro-mechanical tactile transducers (tactors) was used to determine if a modified tactile display system, known as the Tactile Situation Awareness System (TSAS) improved the safety and precision of a complex spacecraft (i.e. the Space Shuttle Orbiter) in guided precision approaches and landings. The goal was to determine if tactile cues enhance safety and mission performance through reduced workload, increased situational awareness (SA), and an improved operational capability by increasing secondary cognitive workload capacity and human-machine interface efficiency and effectiveness. Using both qualitative and quantitative measures such as NASA's Justiz Numerical Measure and Synwork1 scores, an Overall Workload (OW) measure, the Cooper-Harper rating scale, and the China Lake Situational Awareness scale, plus Pre- and Post-Flight Surveys, the data show that tactile displays decrease OW, improve SA, counteract fatigue, and provide superior warning and monitoring capacity for dynamic, off-nominal, high concurrent workload scenarios involving complex, cognitive, and multi-sensory critical scenarios. Use of TSAS for maintaining guided precision approaches and landings was generally intuitive, reduced training times, and improved task learning effects. Ultimately, the use of a homogeneous, experienced, and statistically robust population of test pilots demonstrated that the use of tactile displays for Space Shuttle approaches and landings with degraded vehicle systems, weather, and environmental conditions produced substantial improvements in safety, consistency, reliability, and ease of operations under demanding conditions. Recommendations for further analysis and study are provided in order to leverage the results from this research and further explore the potential to reduce the risk of spaceflight and aerospace operations in general.

  16. Detection of fever in children emergency care: comparisons of tactile and rectal temperatures in Nigerian children

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Okafor Olubukola O

    2010-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Clinical thermometry is the objective method for temperature measurements but tactile assessment of fever at home is usually the basis for seeking medical attention especially where the cost and level of literacy preclude the use of thermometers. This study was carried out to determine the reliability of tactile perception of fever by caregivers, nurses and house physicians in comparison to rectal thermometry and also the use of commonly practiced surface of the hand in the care of ill children. All caregivers of children aged 6 to 59 months who presented to the emergency department were approached consecutively at the triage stage but 182 children participated. Each child had tactile assessment of fever using palmar and dorsal surfaces of the hand by the caregivers, House Physicians and Nursing Officers. Rectal temperature was also measured and read independently by nurses and house physicians. Comparisons were made between tactile assessments and thermometer readings using a cut-off for fever, 38.0°C and above. Findings The caregivers' perception of fever had a sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value (PPV and negative predictive value (NPV of 95%, 23%, 66% and 73%, respectively compared with 93%, 26%, 67% and 69%, respectively for nursing officers. Irrespective of the groups studied, 77.1% of 336 assessors opined that the dorsal surface of the hand was more sensitive in tactile assessment of temperature and the frequently used site for assessment of fever were the head (35.6% and neck (33.3%. Tactile assessment of temperature over-detected fever in ≥ 24% of cases among the three groups of assessors. Conclusions The present study suggests that tactile assessment of temperature may over estimate the prevalence of fever, it does not detect some cases and the need for objective measurement of temperature is emphasised in paediatric emergency care.

  17. Integration of tactile input across fingers in a patient with finger agnosia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anema, Helen A; Overvliet, Krista E; Smeets, Jeroen B J; Brenner, Eli; Dijkerman, H Chris

    2011-01-01

    Finger agnosia has been described as an inability to explicitly individuate between the fingers, which is possibly due to fused neural representations of these fingers. Hence, are patients with finger agnosia unable to keep tactile information perceived over several fingers separate? Here, we tested a finger agnosic patient (GO) on two tasks that measured the ability to keep tactile information simultaneously perceived by individual fingers separate. In experiment 1 GO performed a haptic search task, in which a target (the absence of a protruded line) needed to be identified among distracters (protruded lines). The lines were presented simultaneously to the fingertips of both hands. Similarly to the controls, her reaction time decreased when her fingers were aligned as compared to when her fingers were stretched and in an unaligned position. This suggests that she can keep tactile input from different fingers separate. In experiment two, GO was required to judge the position of a target tactile stimulus to the index finger, relatively to a reference tactile stimulus to the middle finger, both in fingers uncrossed and crossed position. GO was able to indicate the relative position of the target stimulus as well as healthy controls, which indicates that she was able to keep tactile information perceived by two neighbouring fingers separate. Interestingly, GO performed better as compared to the healthy controls in the finger crossed condition. Together, these results suggest the GO is able to implicitly distinguish between tactile information perceived by multiple fingers. We therefore conclude that finger agnosia is not caused by minor disruptions of low-level somatosensory processing. These findings further underpin the idea of a selective impaired higher order body representation restricted to the fingers as underlying cause of finger agnosia. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Inert gas narcosis has no influence on thermo-tactile sensation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jakovljević, Miroljub; Vidmar, Gaj; Mekjavic, Igor B

    2012-05-01

    Contribution of skin thermal sensors under inert gas narcosis to the raising hypothermia is not known. Such information is vital for understanding the impact of narcosis on behavioural thermoregulation, diver safety and judgment of thermal (dis)comfort in the hyperbaric environment. So this study aimed at establishing the effects of normoxic concentration of 30% nitrous oxide (N(2)O) on thermo-tactile threshold sensation by studying 16 subjects [eight females and eight males; eight sensitive (S) and eight non-sensitive (NS) to N(2)O]. Their mean (SD) age was 22.1 (1.8) years, weight 72.8 (15.3) kg, height 1.75 (0.10) m and body mass index 23.8 (3.8) kg m(-2). Quantitative thermo-tactile sensory testing was performed on forearm, upper arm and thigh under two experimental conditions: breathing air (air trial) and breathing normoxic mixture of 30% N(2)O (N(2)O trial) in the mixed sequence. Difference in thermo-tactile sensitivity thresholds between two groups of subjects in two experimental conditions was analysed by 3-way mixed-model analysis of covariance. There were no statistically significant differences in thermo-tactile thresholds either between the Air and N(2)O trials, or between S and NS groups, or between females and males, or with respect to body mass index. Some clinically insignificant lowering of thermo-tactile thresholds occurred only for warm thermo-tactile thresholds on upper arm and thigh. The results indicated that normoxic mixture of 30% N(2)O had no influence on thermo-tactile sensation in normothermia.

  19. Continuous theta-burst stimulation modulates tactile synchronization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Kevin Gh; Jacobs, Mark F; Asmussen, Michael J; Zapallow, Christopher M; Tommerdahl, Mark; Nelson, Aimee J

    2013-08-23

    Temporal order judgement (TOJ) is the ability to detect the order of occurrence of two sequentially delivered stimuli. Previous research has shown that TOJ in the presence of synchronized periodic conditioning stimuli impairs TOJ performance, and this phenomenon is suggested to be mediated by GABAergic interneurons that cause perceptual binding across the two skin sites. Application of continuous theta-burst repetitive TMS (cTBS) over primary somatosensory cortex (SI) alters temporal and spatial tactile perception. The purpose of this study was to examine TOJ perception in the presence and absence of synchronized periodic conditioning stimuli before and after cTBS applied over left-hemisphere SI. A TOJ task was administered on the right index and middle finger (D2 and D3) in two separate sessions in the presence and absence of conditioning stimuli (a background low amplitude sinusoidal vibration). CTBS reduced the impact of the conditioning stimuli on TOJ performance for up to 18 minutes following stimulation while sham cTBS did not affect TOJ performance. In contrast, the TOJ task performed in the absence of synchronized conditioning stimulation was unaltered following cTBS. We conclude that cTBS suppresses inhibitory networks in SI that mediate perceptual binding during TOJ synchronization. CTBS offers one method to suppress cortical excitability in the cortex and potentially benefit clinical populations with altered inhibitory cortical circuits. Additionally, TOJ measures with conditioning stimuli may provide an avenue to assess sensory processing in neurologically impaired patient populations.

  20. Fabrication of strain gauge based sensors for tactile skins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baptist, Joshua R.; Zhang, Ruoshi; Wei, Danming; Saadatzi, Mohammad Nasser; Popa, Dan O.

    2017-05-01

    Fabricating cost effective, reliable and functional sensors for electronic skins has been a challenging undertaking for the last several decades. Application of such skins include haptic interfaces, robotic manipulation, and physical human-robot interaction. Much of our recent work has focused on producing compliant sensors that can be easily formed around objects to sense normal, tension, or shear forces. Our past designs have involved the use of flexible sensors and interconnects fabricated on Kapton substrates, and piezoresistive inks that are 3D printed using Electro Hydro Dynamic (EHD) jetting onto interdigitated electrode (IDE) structures. However, EHD print heads require a specialized nozzle and the application of a high-voltage electric field; for which, tuning process parameters can be difficult based on the choice of inks and substrates. Therefore, in this paper we explore sensor fabrication techniques using a novel wet lift-off photolithographic technique for patterning the base polymer piezoresistive material, specifically Poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene)-poly(styrenesulfonate) or PEDOT:PSS. Fabricated sensors are electrically and thermally characterized, and temperaturecompensated designs are proposed and validated. Packaging techniques for sensors in polymer encapsulants are proposed and demonstrated to produce a tactile interface device for a robot.

  1. Mutual capacitance of liquid conductors in deformable tactile sensing arrays

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Li, Bin [Electrical and Computer Engineering Department, Drexel University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104 (United States); Fontecchio, Adam K. [Electrical and Computer Engineering and Materials Science and Engineering Departments, Drexel University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104 (United States); Visell, Yon [Electrical and Computer Engineering Department, Media Arts and Technology, California NanoSystems Institute, University of California, Santa Barbara, California 93106 (United States)

    2016-01-04

    Advances in highly deformable electronics are needed in order to enable emerging categories of soft computing devices ranging from wearable electronics, to medical devices, and soft robotic components. The combination of highly elastic substrates with intrinsically stretchable conductors holds the promise of enabling electronic sensors that can conform to curved objects, reconfigurable displays, or soft biological tissues, including the skin. Here, we contribute sensing principles for tactile (mechanical image) sensors based on very low modulus polymer substrates with embedded liquid metal microfluidic arrays. The sensors are fabricated using a single-step casting method that utilizes fine nylon filaments to produce arrays of cylindrical channels on two layers. The liquid metal (gallium indium alloy) conductors that fill these channels readily adopt the shape of the embedding membrane, yielding levels of deformability greater than 400%, due to the use of soft polymer substrates. We modeled the sensor performance using electrostatic theory and continuum mechanics, yielding excellent agreement with experiments. Using a matrix-addressed capacitance measurement technique, we are able to resolve strain distributions with millimeter resolution over areas of several square centimeters.

  2. Object Recognition and Localization: The Role of Tactile Sensors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Achint Aggarwal

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Tactile sensors, because of their intrinsic insensitivity to lighting conditions and water turbidity, provide promising opportunities for augmenting the capabilities of vision sensors in applications involving object recognition and localization. This paper presents two approaches for haptic object recognition and localization for ground and underwater environments. The first approach called Batch Ransac and Iterative Closest Point augmented Particle Filter (BRICPPF is based on an innovative combination of particle filters, Iterative-Closest-Point algorithm, and a feature-based Random Sampling and Consensus (RANSAC algorithm for database matching. It can handle a large database of 3D-objects of complex shapes and performs a complete six-degree-of-freedom localization of static objects. The algorithms are validated by experimentation in ground and underwater environments using real hardware. To our knowledge this is the first instance of haptic object recognition and localization in underwater environments. The second approach is biologically inspired, and provides a close integration between exploration and recognition. An edge following exploration strategy is developed that receives feedback from the current state of recognition. A recognition by parts approach is developed which uses the BRICPPF for object sub-part recognition. Object exploration is either directed to explore a part until it is successfully recognized, or is directed towards new parts to endorse the current recognition belief. This approach is validated by simulation experiments.

  3. GIS-facilitated spatial narratives

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Møller-Jensen, Lasse; Jeppesen, Henrik; Kofie, Richard Y.

    2008-01-01

    on the thematically and narrative linking of a set of locations within an area. A spatial narrative that describes the - largely unsuccessful - history of Danish plantations on the Gold Coast (1788-1850) is implemented through the Google Earth client. This client is seen both as a type of media in itself for ‘home......-based' exploration of sites related to the narrative and as a tool that facilitates the design of spatial narratives before implementation within portable GIS devices. The Google Earth-based visualization of the spatial narrative is created by a Python script that outputs a web-accessible KML format file. The KML...

  4. Tactile exploration of virtual objects for blind and sighted people: the role of beta 1 EEG band in sensory substitution and supramodal mental mapping.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campus, C; Brayda, L; De Carli, F; Chellali, R; Famà, F; Bruzzo, C; Lucagrossi, L; Rodriguez, G

    2012-05-01

    The neural correlates of exploration and cognitive mapping in blindness remain elusive. The role of visuo-spatial pathways in blind vs. sighted subjects is still under debate. In this preliminary study, we investigate, as a possible estimation of the activity in the visuo-spatial pathways, the EEG patterns of blind and blindfolded-sighted subjects during the active tactile construction of cognitive maps from virtual objects compared with rest and passive tactile stimulation. Ten blind and ten matched, blindfolded-sighted subjects participated in the study. Events were defined as moments when the finger was only stimulated (passive stimulation) or the contour of a virtual object was touched (during active exploration). Event-related spectral power and coherence perturbations were evaluated within the beta 1 band (14-18 Hz). They were then related to a subjective cognitive-load estimation required by the explorations [namely, perceived levels of difficulty (PLD)]. We found complementary cues for sensory substitution and spatial processing in both groups: both blind and sighted subjects showed, while exploring, late power decreases and early power increases, potentially associated with motor programming and touch, respectively. The latter involved occipital areas only for blind subjects (long-term plasticity) and only during active exploration, thus supporting tactile-to-visual sensory substitution. In both groups, coherences emerged among the fronto-central, centro-parietal, and occipito-temporal derivations associated with visuo-spatial processing. This seems in accordance with mental map construction involving spatial processing, sensory-motor processing, and working memory. The observed involvement of the occipital regions suggests that a substitution process also occurs in sighted subjects. Only during explorations did coherence correlate positively with PLD for both groups and in derivations, which can be related to visuo-spatial processing, supporting the

  5. Tactile exploration of virtual objects for blind and sighted people: the role of beta 1 EEG band in sensory substitution and supramodal mental mapping

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brayda, L.; De Carli, F.; Chellali, R.; Famà, F.; Bruzzo, C.; Lucagrossi, L.; Rodriguez, G.

    2012-01-01

    The neural correlates of exploration and cognitive mapping in blindness remain elusive. The role of visuo-spatial pathways in blind vs. sighted subjects is still under debate. In this preliminary study, we investigate, as a possible estimation of the activity in the visuo-spatial pathways, the EEG patterns of blind and blindfolded-sighted subjects during the active tactile construction of cognitive maps from virtual objects compared with rest and passive tactile stimulation. Ten blind and ten matched, blindfolded-sighted subjects participated in the study. Events were defined as moments when the finger was only stimulated (passive stimulation) or the contour of a virtual object was touched (during active exploration). Event-related spectral power and coherence perturbations were evaluated within the beta 1 band (14–18 Hz). They were then related to a subjective cognitive-load estimation required by the explorations [namely, perceived levels of difficulty (PLD)]. We found complementary cues for sensory substitution and spatial processing in both groups: both blind and sighted subjects showed, while exploring, late power decreases and early power increases, potentially associated with motor programming and touch, respectively. The latter involved occipital areas only for blind subjects (long-term plasticity) and only during active exploration, thus supporting tactile-to-visual sensory substitution. In both groups, coherences emerged among the fronto-central, centro-parietal, and occipito-temporal derivations associated with visuo-spatial processing. This seems in accordance with mental map construction involving spatial processing, sensory-motor processing, and working memory. The observed involvement of the occipital regions suggests that a substitution process also occurs in sighted subjects. Only during explorations did coherence correlate positively with PLD for both groups and in derivations, which can be related to visuo-spatial processing, supporting the

  6. Taking a call is facilitated by the multisensory processing of smartphone vibrations, sounds, and flashes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ulrich Pomper

    Full Text Available Many electronic devices that we use in our daily lives provide inputs that need to be processed and integrated by our senses. For instance, ringing, vibrating, and flashing indicate incoming calls and messages in smartphones. Whether the presentation of multiple smartphone stimuli simultaneously provides an advantage over the processing of the same stimuli presented in isolation has not yet been investigated. In this behavioral study we examined multisensory processing between visual (V, tactile (T, and auditory (A stimuli produced by a smartphone. Unisensory V, T, and A stimuli as well as VA, AT, VT, and trisensory VAT stimuli were presented in random order. Participants responded to any stimulus appearance by touching the smartphone screen using the stimulated hand (Experiment 1, or the non-stimulated hand (Experiment 2. We examined violations of the race model to test whether shorter response times to multisensory stimuli exceed probability summations of unisensory stimuli. Significant violations of the race model, indicative of multisensory processing, were found for VA stimuli in both experiments and for VT stimuli in Experiment 1. Across participants, the strength of this effect was not associated with prior learning experience and daily use of smartphones. This indicates that this integration effect, similar to what has been previously reported for the integration of semantically meaningless stimuli, could involve bottom-up driven multisensory processes. Our study demonstrates for the first time that multisensory processing of smartphone stimuli facilitates taking a call. Thus, research on multisensory integration should be taken into consideration when designing electronic devices such as smartphones.

  7. The TacTip Family: Soft Optical Tactile Sensors with 3D-Printed Biomimetic Morphologies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ward-Cherrier, Benjamin; Pestell, Nicholas; Cramphorn, Luke; Winstone, Benjamin; Giannaccini, Maria Elena; Rossiter, Jonathan; Lepora, Nathan F

    2018-04-01

    Tactile sensing is an essential component in human-robot interaction and object manipulation. Soft sensors allow for safe interaction and improved gripping performance. Here we present the TacTip family of sensors: a range of soft optical tactile sensors with various morphologies fabricated through dual-material 3D printing. All of these sensors are inspired by the same biomimetic design principle: transducing deformation of the sensing surface via movement of pins analogous to the function of intermediate ridges within the human fingertip. The performance of the TacTip, TacTip-GR2, TacTip-M2, and TacCylinder sensors is here evaluated and shown to attain submillimeter accuracy on a rolling cylinder task, representing greater than 10-fold super-resolved acuity. A version of the TacTip sensor has also been open-sourced, enabling other laboratories to adopt it as a platform for tactile sensing and manipulation research. These sensors are suitable for real-world applications in tactile perception, exploration, and manipulation, and will enable further research and innovation in the field of soft tactile sensing.

  8. The effects of negative emotions on sensory perception: fear but not anger decreases tactile sensitivity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kelley, Nicholas J; Schmeichel, Brandon J

    2014-01-01

    Emotions and sensory perceptions are closely intertwined. Of the five senses, sight has been by far the most extensively studied sense in emotion research. Relatively less is known about how emotions influence the other four senses. Touch is essential for nonverbal communication in both humans and other animals. The current investigation tested competing hypotheses about the effect of fear on tactile perception. One hypothesis based on evolutionary considerations predicts that fear enhances sensory perception, including tactile sensitivity. A competing hypothesis based on research on peripheral psychophysiology predicts that fear should decrease tactile sensitivity. Two experiments that induced negative emotional states and measured two-point discrimination ability at the fingertip found that fear reduces tactile sensitivity relative to anger or a neutral control condition (Studies 1 and 2). These findings did not appear to be driven by participants' naïve beliefs about the influence of emotions on touch (Study 3). The results represent the first evidence of the causal impact of emotional states on tactile sensitivity, are consistent with prior evidence for the peripheral physiological effects of fear, and offer novel empirical grounds for developing and advancing theories of emotional influences on sensory perception.

  9. Symbol recognition produced by points of tactile stimulation: the illusion of linear continuity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gonzales, G R

    1996-11-01

    To determine whether tactile receptive communication is possible through the use of a mechanical device that produces the phi phenomenon on the body surface. Twenty-six subjects (11 blind and 15 sighted participants) were tested with use of a tactile communication device (TCD) that produces an illusion of linear continuity forming numbers on the dorsal aspect of the wrist. Recognition of a number or number set was the goal. A TCD with protruding and vibrating solenoids produced sequentially delivered points of cutaneous stimulation along a pattern resembling numbers and created the illusion of dragging a vibrating stylet to form numbers, similar to what might be felt by testing for graphesthesia. Blind subjects recognized numbers with fewer trials than did sighted subjects, although all subjects were able to recognize all the numbers produced by the TCD. Subjects who had been blind since birth and had no prior tactile exposure to numbers were able to draw the numbers after experiencing them delivered by the TCD even though they did not recognize their meaning. The phi phenomenon is probably responsible for the illusion of continuous lines in the shape of numbers as produced by the TCD. This tactile illusion could potentially be used for more complex tactile communications such as letters and words.

  10. Biologically inspired multi-layered synthetic skin for tactile feedback in prosthetic limbs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Osborn, Luke; Nguyen, Harrison; Betthauser, Joseph; Kaliki, Rahul; Thakor, Nitish

    2016-08-01

    The human body offers a template for many state-of-the-art prosthetic devices and sensors. In this work, we present a novel, sensorized synthetic skin that mimics the natural multi-layered nature of mechanoreceptors found in healthy glabrous skin to provide tactile information. The multi-layered sensor is made up of flexible piezoresistive textiles that act as force sensitive resistors (FSRs) to convey tactile information, which are embedded within a silicone rubber to resemble the compliant nature of human skin. The top layer of the synthetic skin is capable of detecting small loads less than 5 N whereas the bottom sensing layer responds reliably to loads over 7 N. Finite element analysis (FEA) of a simplified human fingertip and the synthetic skin was performed. Results suggest similarities in behavior during loading. A natural tactile event is simulated by loading the synthetic skin on a prosthetic limb. Results show the sensors' ability to detect applied loads as well as the ability to simulate neural spiking activity based on the derivative and temporal differences of the sensor response. During the tactile loading, the top sensing layer responded 0.24 s faster than the bottom sensing layer. A synthetic biologically-inspired skin such as this will be useful for enhancing the functionality of prosthetic limbs through tactile feedback.

  11. Vibration-enhanced posture stabilization achieved by tactile supplementation: may blind individuals get extra benefits?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Magalhães, Fernando Henrique; Kohn, André Fabio

    2011-08-01

    Diminished balance ability poses a serious health risk due to the increased likelihood of falling, and impaired postural stability is significantly associated with blindness and poor vision. Noise stimulation (by improving the detection of sub-threshold somatosensory information) and tactile supplementation (i.e., additional haptic information provided by an external contact surface) have been shown to improve the performance of the postural control system. Moreover, vibratory noise added to the source of tactile supplementation (e.g., applied to a surface that the fingertip touches) has been shown to enhance balance stability more effectively than tactile supplementation alone. In view of the above findings, in addition to the well established consensus that blind subjects show superior abilities in the use of tactile information, we hypothesized that blind subjects may take extra benefits from the vibratory noise added to the tactile supplementation and hence show greater improvements in postural stability than those observed for sighted subjects. If confirmed, this hypothesis may lay the foundation for the development of noise-based assistive devices (e.g., canes, walking sticks) for improving somatosensation and hence prevent falls in blind individuals. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Active Prior Tactile Knowledge Transfer for Learning Tactual Properties of New Objects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Di Feng

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Reusing the tactile knowledge of some previously-explored objects (prior objects helps us to easily recognize the tactual properties of new objects. In this paper, we enable a robotic arm equipped with multi-modal artificial skin, like humans, to actively transfer the prior tactile exploratory action experiences when it learns the detailed physical properties of new objects. These experiences, or prior tactile knowledge, are built by the feature observations that the robot perceives from multiple sensory modalities, when it applies the pressing, sliding, and static contact movements on objects with different action parameters. We call our method Active Prior Tactile Knowledge Transfer (APTKT, and systematically evaluated its performance by several experiments. Results show that the robot improved the discrimination accuracy by around 10 % when it used only one training sample with the feature observations of prior objects. By further incorporating the predictions from the observation models of prior objects as auxiliary features, our method improved the discrimination accuracy by over 20 % . The results also show that the proposed method is robust against transferring irrelevant prior tactile knowledge (negative knowledge transfer.

  13. An Experimental Optical Three-axis Tactile Sensor Featured with Hemispherical Surface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ohka, Masahiro; Kobayashi, Hiroaki; Takata, Jumpei; Mitsuya, Yasunaga

    We are developing an optical three-axis tactile sensor capable of acquiring normal and shearing force to mount on a robotic finger. The tactile sensor is based on the principle of an optical waveguide-type tactile sensor, which is composed of an acrylic hemispherical dome, a light source, an array of rubber sensing elements, and a CCD camera. The sensing element of the silicone rubber comprises one columnar feeler and eight conical feelers. The contact areas of the conical feelers, which maintain contact with the acrylic dome, detect the three-axis force applied to the tip of the sensing element. Normal and shearing forces are then calculated from integration and centroid displacement of the grayscale value derived from the conical feeler's contacts. To evaluate the present tactile sensor, we conducted a series of experiments using an x-z stage, a rotational stage, and a force gauge. Although we discovered that the relationship between the integrated grayscale value and normal force depends on the sensor's latitude on the hemispherical surface, it is easy to modify the sensitivity based on the latitude to make the centroid displacement of the grayscale value proportional to the shearing force. When we examined the repeatability of the present tactile sensor with 1,000 load/unload cycles, the error was 2%.

  14. Application of artificial tactile sensing approach in kidney-stone-removal laparoscopy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Afshari, Elnaz; Najarian, Siamak; Simforoosh, Nasser

    2010-01-01

    Artificial tactile sensing is a novel method for obtaining different characteristics of a hard object embedded in a soft tissue. In this regard, artificial palpation is one of the most valuable achievements of artificial tactile sensing that can be used in various fields of medicine and more specifically in surgery. In this study, considering the present problems and limitations in kidney-stone-removal laparoscopy, a new application will be presented for artificial tactile sensing approach. Having imitated surgeon's palpation during open surgery and modeled it conceptually, indications of stone existence that appear on the surface of kidney (due to exerting mechanical load) were determined. A number of different cases were created and solved by the software. Using stress distribution contours and stress graphs, it is illustrated that the created stress patterns on the surface of kidney not only show the existence of stone inside, but also its exact location. In fact, the reliability and accuracy of artificial tactile sensing method in detection of kidney stone during laparoscopy is demonstrated by means of finite element analysis. Also, in this paper, the functional principles of tactile system capable of determining the exact location of stone during laparoscopy will be presented.

  15. Variation in the autism candidate gene GABRB3 modulates tactile sensitivity in typically developing children

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tavassoli Teresa

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Autism spectrum conditions have a strong genetic component. Atypical sensory sensitivities are one of the core but neglected features of autism spectrum conditions. GABRB3 is a well-characterised candidate gene for autism spectrum conditions. In mice, heterozygous Gabrb3 deletion is associated with increased tactile sensitivity. However, no study has examined if tactile sensitivity is associated with GABRB3 genetic variation in humans. To test this, we conducted two pilot genetic association studies in the general population, analysing two phenotypic measures of tactile sensitivity (a parent-report and a behavioural measure for association with 43 SNPs in GABRB3. Findings Across both tactile sensitivity measures, three SNPs (rs11636966, rs8023959 and rs2162241 were nominally associated with both phenotypes, providing a measure of internal validation. Parent-report scores were nominally associated with six SNPs (P Conclusions This is the first human study to show an association between GABRB3 variation and tactile sensitivity. This provides support for the evidence from animal models implicating the role of GABRB3 variation in the atypical sensory sensitivity in autism spectrum conditions. Future research is underway to directly test this association in cases of autism spectrum conditions.

  16. A Feeling for Numbers: Shared Metric for Symbolic and Tactile Numerosities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Florian eKrause

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Evidence for an approximate analogue system of numbers has been provided by the finding that the comparison of two numerals takes longer and is more error prone if the semantic distance between the numbers becomes smaller (so-called numerical distance effect. Recent embodied theories suggest that analogue number representations are based on previous sensory experiences and constitute therefore a common magnitude metric shared by multiple domains. Here we demonstrate the existence of a cross-modal semantic distance effect between symbolic and tactile numerosities. Participants received tactile stimulations of different amounts of fingers while reading Arabic digits and indicated verbally whether the amount of stimulated fingers was different from the simultaneously presented digit or not. The larger the semantic distance was between the two numerosities, the faster and more accurate participants made their judgements. This cross-modal numerosity distance effect suggests a direct connection between tactile sensations and the concept of numerical magnitude. A second experiment replicated the interaction between symbolic and tactile numerosities and showed that this effect is not modulated by the participants' finger counting habits. Taken together, our data provide novel evidence for a shared metric for symbolic and tactile numerosites as an instance of an embodied representation of numbers.

  17. Currency features for visually impaired people

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hyland, Sandra L.; Legge, Gordon E.; Shannon, Robert R.; Baer, Norbert S.

    1996-03-01

    The estimated 3.7 million Americans with low vision experience a uniquely difficult task in identifying the denominations of U.S. banknotes because the notes are remarkably uniform in size, color, and general design. The National Research Council's Committee on Currency Features Usable by the Visually Impaired assessed features that could be used by people who are visually disabled to distinguish currency from other documents and to denominate and authenticate banknotes using available technology. Variation of length and height, introduction of large numerals on a uniform, high-contrast background, use of different colors for each of the six denominations printed, and the introduction of overt denomination codes that could lead to development of effective, low-cost devices for examining banknotes were all deemed features available now. Issues affecting performance, including the science of visual and tactile perception, were addressed for these features, as well as for those features requiring additional research and development. In this group the committee included durable tactile features such as those printed with transparent ink, and the production of currency with holes to indicate denomination. Among long-range approaches considered were the development of technologically advanced devices and smart money.

  18. Rubber hand illusion under delayed visual feedback.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sotaro Shimada

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Rubber hand illusion (RHI is a subject's illusion of the self-ownership of a rubber hand that was touched synchronously with their own hand. Although previous studies have confirmed that this illusion disappears when the rubber hand was touched asynchronously with the subject's hand, the minimum temporal discrepancy of these two events for attenuation of RHI has not been examined. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: In this study, various temporal discrepancies between visual and tactile stimulations were introduced by using a visual feedback delay experimental setup, and RHI effects in each temporal discrepancy condition were systematically tested. The results showed that subjects felt significantly greater RHI effects with temporal discrepancies of less than 300 ms compared with longer temporal discrepancies. The RHI effects on reaching performance (proprioceptive drift showed similar conditional differences. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Our results first demonstrated that a temporal discrepancy of less than 300 ms between visual stimulation of the rubber hand and tactile stimulation to the subject's own hand is preferable to induce strong sensation of RHI. We suggest that the time window of less than 300 ms is critical for multi-sensory integration processes constituting the self-body image.

  19. Acquisition of multiple prior distributions in tactile temporal order judgment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yasuhito eNagai

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available The Bayesian estimation theory proposes that the brain acquires the prior distribution of a task and integrates it with sensory signals to minimize the effect of sensory noise. Psychophysical studies have demonstrated that our brain actually implements Bayesian estimation in a variety of sensory-motor tasks. However, these studies only imposed one prior distribution on participants within a task period. In this study, we investigated the conditions that enable the acquisition of multiple prior distributions in temporal order judgment (TOJ of two tactile stimuli across the hands. In Experiment 1, stimulation intervals were randomly selected from one of two prior distributions (biased to right hand earlier and biased to left hand earlier in association with color cues (green and red, respectively. Although the acquisition of the two priors was not enabled by the color cues alone, it was significant when participants shifted their gaze (above or below in response to the color cues. However, the acquisition of multiple priors was not significant when participants moved their mouths (opened or closed. In Experiment 2, the spatial cues (above and below were used to identify which eye position or retinal cue position was crucial for the eye-movement-dependent acquisition of multiple priors in Experiment 1. The acquisition of the two priors was significant when participants moved their gaze to the cues (i.e., the cue positions on the retina were constant across the priors, as well as when participants did not shift their gazes (i.e., the cue positions on the retina changed according to the priors. Thus, both eye and retinal cue positions were effective in acquiring multiple priors. Based on previous neurophysiological reports, we discuss possible neural correlates that contribute to the acquisition of multiple priors.

  20. The role of the sliding direction against a grooved channel texture on tool steel: An experimental study on tactile friction

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Zhang, S.; Rodriguez Urribarri, A.; Morales Hurtado, M.; Zeng, X.; Heide, E. van der

    2015-01-01

    To control tactile friction, that is the friction between fingertip and counter-body, the role of surface texture is required to be unveiled and defined. In this research, an experimental approach is used based on measuring tactile friction for directional texture (grooved channel) with varying