Time perception

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Description:
Time perception is a field of study within psychology and neuroscience. It refers to the sense of time, which differs from other senses since time cannot be directly perceived but must be reconstructed by the brain. Humans can perceive relatively short periods of time, in the order of milliseconds, and also durations that are a significant fraction of a lifetime. Human perception of duration is subjective and variable. Some researchers attempt to categorise people by how they differ in their perception of time (see Personality characteristics).

Pioneering work, emphasizing species-specific differences, was done by Karl Ernst von Baer. Experimental work began under the influence of the psycho-physical notions of Gustav Theodor Fechner with studies of the relationship between perceived and measured time. Work with animals conducted by Jakob von Uexküll included measurement of length of momentum in snails.

Theories

William J. Friedman also contrasted two theories for a sense of time:
  • The strength model of time memory. This posits a memory trace that persists over time, by which one might judge the age of a memory (and therefore how long ago the event remembered occurred) from the strength of the trace. This conflicts with the fact that memories of recent events may fade more quickly than more distant memories.
  • The inference model suggests the time of an event is inferred from information about relations......
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