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The shape of a view: Are rectilinear views necessary to elicit boundary extension?

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Viewers tend to remember seeing beyond the boundaries of a view ( boundary extension [BE]; Intraub & Richardson, 1989). However, only rectilinear views have been tested (e.g., photographs, or views through windows). Views more typical of natural settings (irregular or rounded) have not been considered. Is BE an artifact of rectilinear boundaries? In Experiment 1, participants memorized rectilinear, oval, or irregularly shaped views (outermost points were equated) of 15 natural scenes. Minutes later, memory for the expanse of each view was tested (5-point scale). In Experiments 2 and 3, memory for rectilinear and oval views was contrasted using a new boundary adjustment procedure. Not only did BE occur for all shapes (Experiments 1–3), but it did so to the same degree. Layout projection appears to be a general characteristic of memory for a view—providing anticipatory representation of upcoming layout by extending outward from the farthest visible point.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: University of Delaware, Newark, DE, USA

Publication date: 2006-06-01

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