Wilkins A J, Smith J, Willison C K, Beare T, Boyd A, Hardy G, Mell L, Peach C, Harper S, 2007, "Stripes within words affect reading" Perception 36(12) 1788 – 1803
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Stripes within words affect reading
Arnold J Wilkins, Jennifer Smith, Clare K Willison, Tom Beare, Alexandra Boyd, Gemma Hardy, Louise Mell, Charlotte Peach, Samantha Harper
Received 19 July 2006, in revised form 6 May 2007
Abstract. In a series of eight studies it is shown that the first peak in the horizontal autocorrelation of the image of a word (which captures the similarity in shape between the neighbouring strokes of letters) determines (i) the appearance of the words as striped; (ii) the speed with which the words are read, both aloud and silently; and (iii) the speed with which a paragraph of text can be searched. By subtly distorting the horizontal dimension of text, and thereby reducing the first peak in the horizontal autocorrelation, it is shown that the speed of word recognition can be increased. The increase in speed is greater in poor readers.
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