Multiple Object Tracking

 In everyday life, we frequently encounter viewpoint changes while observing dynamic scenes. Small viewpoint changes occur, if we briefly avert our gaze from a scene that we pass sideways. Large abrupt viewpoint changes are common in movies or sports reports on television. We use continuous and abrupt viewpoint changes to study how spatial information about location, configuration, and motion, as well as surface features contribute to the ability of tracking and recovering multiple moving objects. Studies on multiple object tracking have shown that humans are capable of tracking several target objects among distractor objects in dynamic scenes. In the standard paradigm, all objects in the scene are visually indistinguishable and thus, observers have to rely on spatial information. 

 In this project, we use the multiple object tracking paradigm to examine a broad variety of processes of human visual attention in dynamic scenes. Central research questions are: What helps participants to maintain visual attention across viewpoint changes? Where do humans look while keeping track of multiple moving objects? 


 For comments, questions, reprints of manuscripts, etc. please contact Markus Huff (markus.huff[at] 


 German Research Foundation (DFG) Grants HU 1510/4-1 and HU 1510/4-3


Papenmeier, F., Meyerhoff, H.S., Jahn, G., & Huff, M. (in press). Tracking by location and features: Object correspondence across spatiotemporal discontinuities during multiple objekt tracking. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance. doi: 10.1037/a0033117


Meyerhoff, H.S., Papenmeier, F., & Huff, M. (2013). Object-based integration of motion information during attentive tracking. Perception, 42, 119-121. doi: 10.1068/p7273.


Meyerhoff, H.S., Papenmeier, F., Jahn, G. & Huff, M. (2013). A single unexpected change in target- but not distractor motion impairs multiple object tracking. i-Perception, 4(1), 81–83. doi: 10.1068/i0567sas


Huff, M., & Papenmeier, F. (2013). It is time to integrate: The temporal dynamics of object motion and texture motion integration in multiple object tracking. Vision Research, 76, 25-30. doi:10.1016/j.visres.2012.10.001


Jahn, G., Wendt, J., Lotze, M., Papenmeier, F., & Huff, M. (2012). Brain activation during spatial updating and attentive tracking of moving targets. Brain and Cognition, 78, 105-113. doi: 10.1016/j.bandc.2011.12.001


Jahn, G., Papenmeier, F., Meyerhoff, H.S., & Huff, M. (2012). Spatial reference in multiple object tracking. Experimental Psychology, 59, 163-173. doi:10.1027/1618-3169/a000139


Meyerhoff, H.S., Huff, M., Papenmeier, F., Jahn, G, & Schwan, S. (2011). Continuous visual cues trigger automatic spatial target updating in dynamic scenes. Cognition, 121, 73-82. doi:10.1016/j.cognition.2011.06.001 


Huff, M., Papenmeier, F., Jahn, G., & Hesse, F.W. (2010). Eye movements across viewpoint changes in multiple object tracking. Visual Cognition, 18, 1368-1391. doi: 10.1080/13506285.2010.495878 


St. Clair, R., Huff, M., & Seiffert, A.E. (2010). Conflicting motion information impairs multiple object tracking. Journal of Vision, 10(4):18, 1–13. doi:10.1167/10.4.18. 


Huff, M., Meyerhoff, H. S., Papenmeier, F., & Jahn, G. (2010). Spatial updating of dynamic scenes: Tracking multiple invisible objects across viewpoint changes. Attention, Perception, & Psychophysics, 72, 628-636. doi:10.3758/APP.72.3.628. 


 Huff, M., Jahn, G., & Schwan, S. (2009). Tracking multiple objects across abrupt viewpoint changes. Visual Cognition, 17, 297-306. doi:10.1080/13506280802061838.