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Being present in more than one place at a time? Patterns of mental self-localization

Elsevier Inc.
Publication Date
DOI: 10.1016/j.concog.2011.05.008
  • Self-Localization
  • Presence
  • Immersion
  • Temporal Dynamics


Abstract Research in cognitive neuroscience and spatial presence suggests that human mental self-localization is tied to one place at a given point in time. In this study, we examined whether it is possible to feel localized at two distinct places at the same time. Participants ( N = 30) were exposed to a virtual rollercoaster and they continuously judged to what extent they felt present in the immediate environment and in the mediated environment, respectively. The results show that participants distributed their self-localization to both environments, and the two values added up to closely 100% over time. In addition, even though the judgments are highly idiosyncratic, they were almost perfectly inversely related. This indicates that individuals can distribute their self over two distinct places. These findings provide important insights about understanding of the human self-localization.

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