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In a series of seven experiments (total N = 220), it is shown that explicit angular declination judgments are influenced by the presence of a ground plane in the background. This is of theoretical importance because it bears on the interpretation of the relationship between angular declination and perceived distance on a ground plane. Explicit estimates of ground distance are consistent with a simple 1.5 gain in the underlying perceived angular declination function. The experiments show that, in general, functions of estimates of perceived angular declination have a slope of 1.5, but that an additional intercept can often be observed as a result of incorporating changes in ground distance into reports of changes in angular declination. By varying the background context, a variety of functions were observed that are consistent with this contamination hypothesis.


distance perception, angular declination, magnitude estimation

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.


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