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Accueil > À noter > Séminaires > Jeudi 3 Mars, à 15h. Malika AUVRAY (ISIR, CNRS & Université Pierre et Marie Curie-Paris 6). A 15h, Salle des thèses, Faculté des Sciences du Sport, Campus de Luminy (Marseille). ’Replacing one modality by another : Learning to use sensory substitution devices’

Jeudi 3 Mars, à 15h. Malika AUVRAY (ISIR, CNRS & Université Pierre et Marie Curie-Paris 6). A 15h, Salle des thèses, Faculté des Sciences du Sport, Campus de Luminy (Marseille). ’Replacing one modality by another : Learning to use sensory substitution devices’

Invitée par Fabrice SARLEGNA

Mise à jour : 25 février 2016

Sensory substitution devices convert stimuli that are normally accessed through one sensory modality (e.g., vision) into stimuli accessible through another sensory modality (e.g., touch or audition). Among them, visual-to-tactile and visual-to-auditory conversion systems were designed in order to assist blind and visually impaired people. Since their inception in the sixties various kinds of devices have been developed, tested, and shown to allow their users to behave to some degree as if they possessed the substituted sensory organ. In the first part of the talk, I will review the existing devices together with the main results obtained across the literature. Then I will turn to the limits and perspectives in the domain. Indeed, despite the numerous studies and research programs devoted to their development and integration, sensory substitution devices have failed to live up to their goal of allowing one to “see with the skin” or to “see with the brain” (Bach-y-Rita et al., 2003). As I will stress, these claims, as well as the research conducted so far, are based on an implicit perceptual paradigm which accepts the equivalence between using a sensory substitution device and perceiving through a particular sensory modality. The aim here is to provide an alternative framework, which defines the integration of sensory substitution devices as being closer to culturally-implemented cognitive extensions of existing perceptual skills. According to it, the experience after sensory substitution is a transformation, extension, or augmentation of our capacities, rather than something equivalent or reducible to an already existing sensory modality. Finally, I will turn to the question of the optimisation of sensory substitution devices and how to find a balance between learning and an intuitive coding of the devices.