Experimental and Computational Investigation of the Effect of Caffeine on Human Time Perception


Perception of time is an active process that takes place continually. However, we are yet to learn its exact mechanisms conclusively. The temporal bisection task is ideal to investigate the circuitry underlying time perception. Caffeine, a commonly used stimulant, has been known to play a role in modulation of time perception. The objective of this article is to explore the role of caffeine, a neuromodulator, in the perception of time in human beings by conducting suitable experiments. The experiment shows that an expansion of time is perceived by subjects after caffeine ingestion and that caffeine has an accelerating effect on our time perception system. Additionally, we present a preliminary 2-step decision model that fits the results of the experiment and potentially gives insights into the mechanisms of caffeine. We conclude by pointing out future directions towards a more biologically realistic computational model.

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