Visual motion stimuli can sometimes distort our perception of time. This effect is dependent on the apparent speed of the moving stimulus, where faster stimuli are usually perceived lasting longer than slower stimuli. Although it has been shown that neural and cognitive processing of biological motion stimuli differ from non-biological motion stimuli, no study has yet investigated whether perceived durations of biological stimuli differ from non-biological stimuli across different speeds. Here, a prospective temporal reproduction task was used to assess that question. Biological motion stimuli consisted of a human silhouette running in place. Non-biological motion stimuli consisted of a rectangle moving in a pendular way. Amount and plausibility of movement for each stimulus and frame-rate (speed) were evaluated by an independent group of participants. Although the amount of movement perceived was positively correlated to frame rate both for biological and non-biological stimuli, movie clips involving biological motion stimuli were judged to last longer than non-biological motion stimuli only at frame rates for which movement was rated as plausible. These results suggest that plausible representations of biomechanical movement induce additional temporal distortions to those modulated by increases in stimulus speed. Moreover, most studies reporting neural and cognitive differences in the processing of biological and non-biological motion stimuli acquired neurophysiological data using fMRI. Here, we report differences in the processing of biological and non-biological motion stimuli across different speeds using functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS), a less costly and portable form of neurophysiological data acquisition.
This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.
Buy single article
Instant access to the full article PDF.
Price includes VAT (USA)
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.
Beauchamp MS, Lee K, Haxby JV, Martin A (2002) Parallel visual motion processing streams for manipulable objects and human movements. Neuron 34:149–159. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0896-6273(02)00642-6
Beauchamp MS, Lee KE, Haxby JV, Martin A (2003) fMRI responses to video and point-light displays of moving humans and manipulable objects. J Neurosci 15(7):991–1001. https://doi.org/10.1162/089892903770007380
Blake R, Shiffar M (2007) Perception of human motion. Annu Rev Psychol 58:47–73. https://doi.org/10.1146/annurev.psych.57.102904.190152
Blakemore S, Decety J (2001) (2001) From the perception of action to the understanding of intention. Nat Neurosci 2:561–567. https://doi.org/10.1038/35086023
Block RA (1990) Cognitive models of psychological time. Psychol Press, New York
Brown SW (1995) Time, change, and motion: the effects of stimulus movement on temporal perception. Perception Psychophys 57(1):105–116. https://doi.org/10.3758/BF03211853
Bruno A, Cicchini MG (2016) Multiple channels of visual time perception. Behav Sci 8:131–139. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cobeha.2016.02.028
Buhusi CV, Meck WH (2005) What makes us tick? Functional and neural mechanisms of interval timing. Nat Rev Neurosci 6(10):755–765. https://doi.org/10.1038/nrn1764
Carrozzo M, Lacquaniti F (2013) Effects of speeding up or slowing down animate or inanimate motions on timing. Exp Brain Res 224(4):581–590. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00221-012-3338-7
Carrozzo M, Moscatelli A, Lacquaniti F (2010) Tempo Rubato: animacy speeds up time in the brain. PLoS ONE 5(12):1–13. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0015638
Castelli F, Happé F, Frith U, Frith C (2000) Movement and mind: a functional imaging study of perception and interpretation of complex intentional movement patterns. Neuroimage 2:314–325. https://doi.org/10.1006/nimg.2000.0612
Cope M, Delpy DT, Reynolds EOR, Wray S, Wyatt J, Van der Zee P (1988) Methods of quantitating cerebral near infrared spectroscopy data. Adv Exp Med Biol 222:183–189
Cui X, Bray S, Reiss AL (2010) Functional near infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) signal improvement based on negative correlation between oxygenated and deoxygenated hemoglobin dynamics. Neuroimage 49(4):3039–3046. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.neuroimage.2009.11.050
Droit-Volet S, Meck W (2007) How Emotions colour our perception of time. Trends Cognit Sci 11(12):504–513. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tics.2007.09.008
Eagleman D (2008) Human time perception and its illusions. Curr Opin Neurobiol 18(2):131–136. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.conb.2008.06.002
Fernandes CA, Garcia-Marques T. (2012) Ilusões Temporais: Paradigma Experimental. Laboratório de Psicologia ISPA 10(2): 265–286. https://doi.org/10.14417/lp.675
Fraisse P (1984) Perception and estimation of time. Annu Rev Psychol 35:1–37. https://doi.org/10.1146/annurev.ps.35.020184.000245
Freyd JJ (1983) The mental representation of movement when static stimuli are viewed. Perception Psychophys 33(6):575–581. https://doi.org/10.3758/BF03202940
Freyd JJ (1987) Dynamic mental representations. Psychol Rev 94(4):427–438. https://doi.org/10.1037/0033-295X.94.4.427
Gavazzi G, Bisio A, Pozzo T (2013) Time perception of visual motion is tuned by the motor representation of human actions. Sci Rep 3(1168):1–8. https://doi.org/10.1038/srep01168
Gibson JJ. (1975) Events are perceivable but time is not. In: Fraser JT, Lawrence N (eds) The Study of Time II, Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-642-50121-0_22
Grèzes J, Fonlupt P, Bertenthal B, Delon-Martin C, Segebarth C, Decety J (2001) Does perception of biological motion rely on specific brain regions? Neuroimage 13:775–785. https://doi.org/10.1006/nimg.2000.0740
Grossman E, Blake R (2001) Brain activity evoked by inverted and imagined motion. Vis Res 41:1475–1482. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0042-6989(00)00317-5
Grossman E, Donnelly M, Price R, Pickens D, Morgan V (2000) Brain areas involved in perception of biological motion. J Cognit Neurosci 12(5):711–720. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0896-6273(02)00897-8
Herrington JD, Charlotte N, Schultz RT (2011) Biological motion task performance predicts superior temporal sulcus activity. Brain Cogn 77:372–381. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0042-6989(00)00317-5
Ishizu T, Noguchi A, Ito Y, Ayabe T, Kojima S (2009) Motor activity and imagery modulate the body-selective region in the occipital-temporal area: a near-infrared spectroscopy study. Neurosci Lett 465(1):85–89. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.neulet.2009.08.079
Johansson G (1973) Visual perception of biological motion and a model for its analysis. Perception Psychophys 14:201–211. https://doi.org/10.3758/BF03212378
Kanai R, Paffen CLE, Hogendoorn H, Verstraten FAJ (2006) Time dilatation in dynamic visual display. J Vis 6:1421–1430. https://doi.org/10.1167/6.12.8
Kaneko S, Murakami I (2009) Perceived duration of visual motion increases with speed. J Vis 9(7):1–12. https://doi.org/10.1167/9.7.14
Kossler L, Maillard L, Benhadid A, Vignal JP, Felblinger H, Vespignani M et al (2009) Automated cortical projection of EEG sensors: anatomical correlation via the internal 10–10 system. Neuroimage 46:64–72. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.neuroimage.2009.02.006
Mather G, Murdoch L (1994) Gender discrimination in biological motion displays based on dynamic cues. Proc R Soc B 259:273–279. https://doi.org/10.1098/rspb.1994.0173
Moscatelli A, Lacquaniti F (2011) The weight of time: gravitational force enhances discrimination of visual motion duration. J Vis. 11(4):1–7. https://doi.org/10.1167/11.4.5
Nakayama K (1985) Biological image motion processing: a review. Vis Res 25(5):625–660. https://doi.org/10.1016/0042-6989(85)90171-3
Nather FC, Bueno JLO (2011) Static images with different induced intensities of human body movements affect subjective time. Percept Mot Skills 113(1):157–170. https://doi.org/10.2466/24.25.27.PMS.113.4.157-170
Nyman JT, Karlsson EPA, Antfolk J (2017) As time passes by: observed motion-speed and psychological time during video playback. PLoS ONE 12(6):1–21. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0177855
Orgs G, Bestmann S, Schuur F, Haggard P (2011) From body form to biological motion: the apparent velocity of human movement Biases subjective time. Psychol Sci 22(6):712–717. https://doi.org/10.1177/0956797611406446
Orgs G, Bestmann S, Schuur F, Haggard P (2013) From body to biological motion: apparent velocity of human movement biases subjective time. Psychol Sci 22(6):712–717. https://doi.org/10.1177/0956797611406446
Palmer SE (1999) Vision science: photons to phenomenology Mass. MIT Press, Cambridge
Pfeifer MD, Scholkmann F, Labruyère R (2018) Signal processing in functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS): methodological differences lead to different statistical results. Front Hum Neurosci 641(11):1–12. https://doi.org/10.3389/fnhum.2017.00641
Rizzolatti G, Craighero L (2004) The mirror-neuron system. Annu Rev Neurosci 27:169–192. https://doi.org/10.1146/annurev.neuro.27.070203.144230
Sasaki K, Yamamoto K, Miura K (2013) The difference in speed sequence influences perceived duration. Perception 42:198–207. https://doi.org/10.1068/p7241
Savitzky A, Golay MJ (1964) Smoothing and differentiation of data by simplified last squares procedures. Anal Chem 36(8):1627–1639. https://doi.org/10.1021/ac60214a047
Treisman M (1963) Temporal discrimination and the indifference interval. implications for a model of the internal clock. Psychol Monographs 77:1–31. https://doi.org/10.1037/h0093864
Wang L, Jiang Y (2012) Life motion signals lengthen perceived temporal duration. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 109(11):673–677. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1115515109
Witt ST, Meyerand ME, Laird AR (2008) Functional neuroimaging correlates of finger tapping task variations: a meta-analysis. Neuroimage 42(2):343–356. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.neuroimage.2008.04.025
This study was funded by Universidade Federal do ABC (UFABC). The authors would like to thank Dr. Rodrigo Pavão, Dr. Francisco Nather, and the members of the Timing and Cognition Laboratory at UFABC (https://neuro.ufabc.edu.br/timing/) for useful discussions and suggestions on this study. MSC is a member of the Instituto Nacional de Ciência e Tecnologia sobre Comportamento, Cognição e Ensino, supported by the Brazilian National Research Council (CNPq, Grant # 465686/2014-1), the Coordination of Superior Level Staff Improvement (CAPES, Grant # 88887.136407/2017-00), and the São Paulo Research Foundation (FAPESP, Grant # 2014/50909-8).
Springer Nature remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations.
Communicated by Francesca Frassinetti.
Electronic supplementary material
Below is the link to the electronic supplementary material.
About this article
Cite this article
Giorjiani, G.M., Biazoli, C.E. & Caetano, M.S. Differences in perceived durations between plausible biological and non-biological stimuli. Exp Brain Res 239, 161–173 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00221-020-05904-w
- Biological motion