Psychology Presentations

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Our expectations of an object’s heaviness not only drive our fingertip forces, but also our perception of heaviness. This effect is highlighted by the classic size-weight illusion (SWI), where different‐sized objects of identical mass feel different weights (Charpentier, 1891) long after any initial errors in the application of fingertip forces have been corrected (Flanagan & Beltzner, 2000).

Here, we examined whether our expectations about the weight of an upcoming lift are sufficient to induce the SWI in a single wooden cube when lifted without visual feedback, by varying the size of the object seen prior to the lift during a brief preview.

We also measured fingertip forces during lifts of this cube, in order to determine whether the expectations of heaviness associated with the previewed object would affect the application of grip and load forces We contrasted perceptual and kinetic data with those from a full vision SWI task.


A poster presentation at Le Groupe de Recherche sur le Système Nerveux Central (GRSNC) Meeting held in Montreal, QC in 2010