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Perceiving Numbers Affects the Internal Random Movements Generator

The Scientific World Journal
Publication Date
  • Neuroscience


According to the evidence of direct relationships among space, numbers, and finger representations, a random movement generation (RMG) task was employed in order to investigate whether numerical exposure can influence the finger selection of healthy humans. To this purpose a group of participants were asked to generate random finger movements during the exposure to several numerical cues. Although participants were explicitly asked to move finger as random as possible, results showed that left-hand fingers were moved more frequently than right-hand fingers when low numerical cues (from 1 to 3) were presented, and, vice versa, right-hand fingers were moved more frequently than left-hand fingers when high numerical cues (ranged from 7 to 9) were presented. The current result suggests that spontaneous actions can be affected by abstract information, providing an evidence that numerical concepts can influence low-level, non-goal-directed behaviours.

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