WHEN TIME PERCEPTION GOES WRONG

  • Elvira Pérez
  • Yoshitaka Nakajima

Abstract

Auditory illusions illustrate how the auditory system, by imposing a set of rules and temporal constraints, avoids ‘ungrammatical’ percepts. To test this hypothesis, we measured the listeners’ ability to resolve ungrammatical patterns by creating complex tones with asynchronous offset time. An ‘unusual’ offset asynchrony was created by prematurely ending only one of the two components. In some conditions, two consecutive tones were perceived. The results showed a task order effect and a tendency to overestimate the perceptual duration of the second tone, which should have been the rest of the complex after one of the components was ended. These auditory illusions illustrate that time perception, with regard to audition, does not correspond to the immediately present acoustic reality, but rather to the outcome of temporal integration.

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