Individual differences in cognitive processing for roughness rating of fine and coarse textures

Makiko Natsume, Yoshihiro Tanaka (Corresponding author), A.M.L. Kappers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)
100 Downloads (Pure)


Previous studies have demonstrated that skin vibration is an important factor affecting the roughness perception of fine textures. For coarse textures, the determining physical factor is much less clear and there are indications that this might be participant-dependent. In this paper, we focused on roughness perception of both coarse and fine textures of different materials (glass particle surfaces and sandpapers). We investigated the relationship between subjective roughness ratings and three physical parameters (skin vibration, friction coefficient, and particle size) within a group of 30 participants. Results of the glass particle surfaces showed both spatial information (particle size) and temporal information (skin vibration) had a high correlation with subjective roughness ratings. The former correlation was slightly but significantly higher than the latter. The results also indicated different weights of temporal information and spatial information for roughness ratings among participants. Roughness ratings of a different material (sandpaper versus glass particles) could be either larger, similar or smaller, indicating differences among individuals. The best way to describe our results is that in their perceptual evaluation of roughness, different individuals weight temporal information, spatial information, and other mechanical properties differently.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0211407
Number of pages27
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 30 Jan 2019


  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Animals
  • Cognition/physiology
  • Female
  • Fingers/physiology
  • Friction/physiology
  • Glass/chemistry
  • Humans
  • Individuality
  • Male
  • Paper
  • Skin
  • Surface Properties
  • Touch Perception/physiology
  • Vibration
  • Young Adult


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