Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

When The Tongue Slips, The Eyes Have It

Date:
January 31, 2005
Source:
Georgia Institute Of Technology
Summary:
How is it that we can look at a door and accidentally call it a window or call a shovel a rake? When people mislabel objects, they often blame themselves for rushing their words or not paying attention. But research at the Georgia Institute of Technology, published in the December issue of Psychological Science, suggests the mistakes may have less to do with concentration than previously thought.

Zenzi Griffin used eye tracking software to discover that word substitution errors aren’t just a matter of concentration.
Credit: Photo courtesy of Georgia Institute Of Technology

Atlanta (January 20, 2005) — How is it that we can look at a door and accidentally call it a window or call a shovel a rake? When people mislabel objects, they often blame themselves for rushing their words or not paying attention. But research at the Georgia Institute of Technology, published in the December issue of Psychological Science, suggests the mistakes may have less to do with concentration than previously thought. The findings provide an insight into how the brain organizes speech and suggests that when the tongue slips, the eyes may be the best window into a speaker’s intent.

“People typically look at objects before naming them, it’s part of the way they plan the words they are going to say, said Zenzi Griffin, assistant professor of psychology at Georgia Tech. “So, if people are rushing or being inattentive you might expect if they made an error that they spent less time looking at the object. But I found almost no difference in the amount of time people spent looking at an object when they made an error compared to when they didn’t. In fact, people who made an error spent slightly more time looking at the object.”

In the study, Griffin asked participants to name two or three line-drawn objects or describe the action in a scene, while she tracked their eye movements using video cameras outfitted with special software. She identified 41 full or partial speech errors uttered by 33 participants during eye-tracking experiments.

The results, said Griffin, show that at some level people know what they meant to say and that looking at the object doesn’t help to ensure that they will name it correctly. They also suggest that when a person makes a speech error, knowing what they are looking at may be more informative of their intentions than the words they say.

That may be useful to designers of speech recognition software, said Griffin. “Gaze can potentially provide clues to what uncertain words are - at least when people are talking about things in their immediate environment, like in a cockpit or an automobile,” she said. “Gaze can also help to disambiguate which object you are referring to, so if you say ‘Open the door,’ the software could know to which door you are referring.”


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Georgia Institute Of Technology. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Georgia Institute Of Technology. "When The Tongue Slips, The Eyes Have It." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 31 January 2005. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/01/050123222010.htm>.
Georgia Institute Of Technology. (2005, January 31). When The Tongue Slips, The Eyes Have It. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/01/050123222010.htm
Georgia Institute Of Technology. "When The Tongue Slips, The Eyes Have It." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/01/050123222010.htm (accessed October 22, 2014).

Share This



More Mind & Brain News

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

First-Of-Its-Kind Treatment Gives Man Ability To Walk Again

First-Of-Its-Kind Treatment Gives Man Ability To Walk Again

Newsy (Oct. 21, 2014) A medical team has for the first time given a man the ability to walk again after transplanting cells from his brain onto his severed spinal cord. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Portable Breathalyzer Gets You Home Safely

Portable Breathalyzer Gets You Home Safely

Buzz60 (Oct. 21, 2014) Breeze, a portable breathalyzer, gets you home safely by instantly showing your blood alcohol content, and with one tap, lets you call an Uber, a cab or a friend from your contact list to pick you up. Sean Dowling (@SeanDowlingTV) has the details. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Your Birth Season Might Determine Your Temperament

Your Birth Season Might Determine Your Temperament

Newsy (Oct. 20, 2014) A new study says the season you're born in can determine your temperament — and one season has a surprising outcome. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Movies Might Desensitize Violence For Parents, Not Just Kids

Movies Might Desensitize Violence For Parents, Not Just Kids

Newsy (Oct. 20, 2014) A study suggests that parents become desensitized to violent movies as well as children, which leads them to allow their kids to view violent films. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins