The Basic 'Multiple Object Tracking' Paradigm
 
 
This page contains a simple demonstration of the multiple object tracking task that has been used in many of our experiments. The demonstrations are provided as Quicktime movies, which can be downloaded or viewed directly in most web-browsers. These movies are a bit large and choppy, but they should be sufficient to illustrate the basic conditions. If the movies seem too choppy or if the lines are not drawn smoothly, try downloading the movies and playing them off your local hard drive.  
 
Large Sample Trial (820 KB)  
Small Sample Trial (460 KB)  
In the 'multiple object tracking' (MOT) paradigm, first used by Pylyshyn & Storm (1988), subjects must track a number of independently and unpredictably moving identical items in a field of identical distractors. Here, subjects are greeted with 8 identical items. After a moment, 4 of them blink several times, indicating their status as targets. All of the (again identical) items then begin moving unpredictably about the screen. After 10 seconds, the motion stops, and the subject must use the mouse to indicate the four targets. This task is an excellent demonstration of 'visual attention' in action: since all items are featurally identical, you have to keep track of them with your mind!