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Re: Cariani's question: "What is the visual analogue of pitch?"
- To: AUDITORY@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
- Subject: Re: Cariani's question: "What is the visual analogue of pitch?"
- From: Michael Kubovy <kubovy@xxxxxxxxxxxx>
- Date: Tue, 20 Jan 2004 06:01:40 -0500
- Delivery-date: Tue Jan 20 06:27:03 2004
- In-reply-to: <200401200706.i0K75rnO005443@retro.mcgill.ca>
- References: <200401200706.i0K75rnO005443@retro.mcgill.ca>
- Reply-to: Michael Kubovy <kubovy@xxxxxxxxxxxx>
- Sender: AUDITORY Research in Auditory Perception <AUDITORY@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Dave van Valkenburg and I have addressed Peter Cariani's question
("what is the visual analogue of pitch?") at some length in an article,
Kubovy, M. & Van Valkenburg, D. Auditory and visual objects. Cognition.
80(1–2):97–126, 2001 Jun, which can be downloaded from:
Our answer is that the question cannot be answered without
distinguishing between different kinds of analogues. Insofar as pitch
is central to the auditory "what", then the analogue is whatever
sustains the visual "what", namely either space or spatial frequency
(we focus on space in the article, but there's little reason to
privilege either it or spatial frequency -- the analogy is at a level
where sensory mechanisms are not at issue).
Here's the abstract:
Notions of objecthood have traditionally been cast in visuocentric
terminology. As a result, theories of auditory and cross-modal
perception have focused more on the differences between modalities than
on the similarities. In this paper we re-examine the concept of an
object in a way that overcomes the limitations of the traditional
perspective. We propose a new, cross-modal conception of objecthood
which focuses on the similarities between modalities instead of the
differences. Further, we propose that the auditory system might
consist of two parallel streams of processing (the ``what'' and
``where'' subsystems) in a manner analogous to current conceptions of
the visual system. We suggest that the ``what'' subsystems in each
modality are concerned with objecthood. Finally, we present evidence
for---and elaborate on---the hypothesis that the auditory ``where''
subsystem is in the service of visual-motor ``where'' subsystem.
Professor Michael Kubovy
University of Virginia
Department of Psychology
USPS: P.O.Box 400400 Charlottesville, VA 22904-4400
Parcels: Room 102 Gilmer Hall
McCormick Road Charlottesville, VA 22903
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