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December 1960

Perceptual Blanking in Normal and Amblyopic Eyes

Author Affiliations

Iowa City
From the Department of Ophthalmology, College of Medicine, State University of Iowa.

Arch Ophthalmol. 1960;64(6):817-822. doi:10.1001/archopht.1960.01840010819002

A brief flash of light following a tachistoscopic stimulus containing information to be perceived will obliterate perception of the information under certain conditions. The information will be either correctly perceived, or partially or completely eliminated from perception, depending upon the time interval between informative and blanking flash and on the intensity of either flash. The critical time interval at which the blanking flash does no longer interfere with perception of the information delivered by the first flash has been termed "perception time." The process of extinguishing information by interference of a subsequent light stimulus is known as "perceptual blanking."1,2

Extensive work on perception and the conditions on which it is dependent has been done many years ago by Helmholtz.3 On the basis of Helmholtz's work on stimulus duration and perception, Exner4 measured the time interval at which a strong light interferes with perception of a preceding weak

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