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The "distraction potential” of environment sounds during closed-loop visuomotor control

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Chuang,  L
Project group: Cognition & Control in Human-Machine Systems, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;
Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;
Department Human Perception, Cognition and Action, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;

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Scheer,  M
Department Human Perception, Cognition and Action, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;
Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;

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Citation

Chuang, L., & Scheer, M. (2018). The "distraction potential” of environment sounds during closed-loop visuomotor control. In A. Schütz, A. Schubö, D. Endres, & H. Lachnit (Eds.), TeaP 2018: Abstracts of the 60th Conference of Experimental Psychologists (pp. 48). Lengerich, Germany: Pabst Science Publishers.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0001-7E49-1
Abstract
Sounds in our environment can capture our interest even if they bear no relevance to our ongoing occupation. In the context of driving, this could be a crying child in the backseat. Even if we do not exhibit any behavioral responses, our brains generate a characteristic ERP waveform to such sounds; this has been termed the distraction potential (Escera Corral, 2003). We have found that general steering demands attenuate the amplitudes of the early and late novelty P3 components of this distraction potential (Scheer, Bülthoff, Chuang, 2016). In particular, varying the complexity of a steering task’s control dynamics selectively attenuates the late novelty P3 component of the distraction potential, whilst having no effect on the early novelty P3. Other manipulations of steering difficulty, such as control disturbances, do not have a similar impact. These findings mirror those found in dual-task paradigms whereby similar conflicts were found with the P300 potentials generated by infrequent task-relevant tones (e.g., Wickens et al., 1983). Thus, we propose that the late novelty P3 component generated by complex and task-irrelevant sounds is comparable to the better established P300 potentials. Both components might reflect the availability of cross-modal executive working memory resources.