Our new article ‘Crowding Effects across Depth Are Fixation-Centered for Defocused Flankers and Observer-Centered for Defocused Targets’, published in Brain Sciences is now online. Lisa Eberhardt and Anke Huckauf investigated crowding, that is the impairment of peripheral target recognition by the presence of nearby flankers, in a real depth setup. In two sets of experiments, either flankers were presented defocused in real depth, while the to-be-identified targets were on the fixation depth plane, or targets were presented defocused, while the flankers were kept on the fixation depth plane. Results for defocused flankers indicate increased crowding effects with increased flanker distance from the target at focus. However, for defocused targets, crowding for targets in front of the focus as compared to behind was increased. Thus, defocused targets produce decreased crowding with increased target distance from the observer. To conclude, the effects of flankers in depth seem to be centered around fixation, while effects of target depth seem to be observer-centered.
The article may be accessed here.