Researchers find that human eyes learn best in an uncluttered setting
If athletes, soldiers and drivers must perform every day in visually messy environments, common sense suggests that any visual training they receive should include distractions and disorder. New research from the University of Southern California and UC Irvine suggests common sense is wrong in this case.
The human vision system learns best in "clear display" conditions without visual noise, said co-authors Zhong-Lin Lu and Barbara Anne Dosher. Their findings appear in a pair of articles in the current issue of PNAS. The research has long-range implications for rehabilitation therapy, treatment of individuals with "lazy eye" or related disorders and training of soldiers, police officers and other personnel who must make split-second decisions in chaotic situations. "Now you can simplify training a lot," said Lu, a professor of psychology in the USC College of Letters, Arts and Sciences. "Soldiers, for example, have to operate with goggles and all kinds of (visual) devices. Pilots have other kinds of goggles, video displays. They operate in different environments with different kinds of noise and different kinds of interference." "What these results show is, in fact, you only need to train them in a clear display environment."
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