You look in the rearview mirror and watch closely as a speeding car moves into your blind spot. As it re-emerges into view, you are ready. You know where the car should be.
The scenario is a real world example of how your attention to detail – your attentiveness – helps you track objects across the midline of your brain, says UO scientist Edward Vogel, a professor of psychology. He also likens that handoff of an object across brain hemispheres to a relay race, where two runners have to successfully pass a baton.
It gets much more technical after that because of the brain's contralateral operation: objects on the left side of space are processed by the right hemisphere and vice versa. When objects change sides, the two hemispheres must coordinate so that the tracked object isn't lost during the exchange.
In a study to be published in the important journal Current Biology, Vogel's team describes how they applied eye-tracking technology and brain monitoring to capture the process for the first time.
Read the full story at: Oregon researchers capture handoff of tracked object between brain hemispheres
- by Jim Barlow, Public Affairs Communications