Subliminal priming

J. Scott Saults saultsj at
Mon Oct 9 14:31:07 EDT 2006

David Glasgow

Sorry, but I missed seeing your original post and couldn't find it 
searching, so this might be OT, but I'll offer it anyway.

I'd be surprised (amazed, even) if anyone could control brief display 
times like you want in Revolution (without externals). This was 
possible using a set of externals called 'McPsych' (

a project of  The University of Western Australia Department of 
Psychology). As far as I know, no one continued development of this 
very promising but specialized extension to MetaCard / Revolution 
beyond about 2001, and some features are no longer compatible with 
Revolution or XP (though some are).

Missing your original post, I'm not sure what display times you want 
(or why), but I'm guessing it's roughly 2-4 screen refresh cycles 
(~33-66 ms at 60 Hz), followed, of course, by a mask. Computer 
display durations are limited to multiples of the screen refresh 
rate, so finer control of duration intervals requires a faster 
refresh. I'd be happy to hear I'm wrong, but I doubt that Revolution 
can detect refresh rates or onsets (without some external help), much 
less synchronize display onsets and offsets with the refresh. Two 
experiment development systems designed to do this (as well as 
possible under Windows OS) are E-Prime (PST software and Presentation 
(Neurobehavioral systems,  Some other 
possibilities include DMDX, PsyScope, and SuperLab, but I'm not 
familiar with the technical specs of these packages. (On a side note, 
I'm hoping to eventually find a way to integrate and switch back and 
forth from Revolution to E-Prime to use Rev for some features, like 
complex UI and input, and E-Prime for others, like quick 
presentations and RT measurements.)

Maybe Phil Jimmieson already explained all of this and more, but 
thought I should share what I know.

Good luck

J Scott Saults
University of Missouri

At 12:00 PM 10/9/06, you wrote:
>David Glasgow wrote:
> >
> >
> > On 4 Oct 2006, at 3:46 pm, Ian Wood wrote:
> >
> >> Going OT a bit, I thought 'brief flash' priming had been debunked as
> >> having any substantial effect?
> >
> > Oh no no no.  Very exciting and expanding area of the psychology of
> > person perception.  Lots of research showing incredibly fast processing
> > and influence of stimuli presented subliminally.
> >
> > Phil Jimmieson contacted me off list (in fact, "on phone') and said that
> > he had struggled with controlling v fast presentations accurately.
> >  Looks like I need a good CRT and all my ducks nicely lined up before
> > sending 'show to x in Yms' and 'hide to x in Zms' immediately afterwards.
> >
> > If I discover anything interesting or valuable, I will post again.
> >
> >
> > Best Wishes,
> >
> > David Glasgow
> > Carlton Glasgow Partnership
> >
> >
> >
> >
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> >
> >
> >

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