The proposed work will continue a program of empirical and theoretical research that seeks to understand the sensory and non-sensory factors that limit the perception of tactile spatiotemporal patterns. The earlier research has led to a model of recognition of static raised characters sensed by the finger. The major thrust of the work will be to further test the model and hopefully extend it to a broader empirical domain (to spatiotemporal patterns presented to different body sites using a variety of tactile displays). Among the experiments being proposed are (1) further work on the measurement of cutaneous spatial sensitivity using sinewave gratings, (2) a comparison of pattern perception at different body loci, (3) an attempt to disentangle sensory and non-sensory factors that account for the large individual differences in tactile pattern perception and (4) tactile (and visual) recognition of characters drawn from various set sizes (e.g., 8, 15, 26 characters).
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