Cookies on this website
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Continue' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

In a visual-tactile interference paradigm, subjects judged whether tactile vibrations arose on a finger or thumb (upper vs. lower locations), while ignoring distant visual distractor lights that also appeared in upper or lower locations. Incongruent visual distractors (e.g. a lower light combined with upper touch) disrupt such tactile judgements, particularly when appearing near the tactile stimulus (e.g. on the same side of space as the stimulated hand). Here we show that actively wielding tools can change this pattern of crossmodal interference. When such tools were held in crossed positions (connecting the left hand to the right visual field, and vice-versa), the spatial constraints on cross-modal interference reversed, so that visual distractors in the other visual field now disrupted tactile judgements most for a particular hand. This phenomenon depended on active tool-use, developing with increased experience in using the tool. We relate these results to recent physiological and neuropsychological findings. © 2002 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved.

Original publication




Journal article



Publication Date