Carrasco, M. & Seamon, J.G.
(1996). Priing impossible figures in the object decision test: The critical
importance of perceived stimulus complexity. Psychonomic Bulletin &
Review, 3(3): 344-351.
Previous research showed that object decision priming was found for possible,
but not impossible, three-dimensional objects (e.g., Schacter, Cooper,
& Delaney, 1990; Schacter, Cooper, delaney, Peterson, & Tharan, 1991).
We tested those objects and found that the impossible objects were subjectively
more complex than the possbible objects. We then constructed two sets
of possible and impossible objects- one set that was equated for complexity,
and one set that differed- for use in the object decision test. The results
showed that when impossible objects were high in complexity and possible
objects were low in complexity; priming was found only for possible objects;
when possible and impossible objects were equated at a moderate level
of complexity, priming was observed for both object types. These findings
indicate that perceived object complexity, more than object possibility-impossibility,
determined priming in the object decision test. The demonstration of object
decision priming for possible objects calls for a reformulation of the
structural description system explanation.