No space/time trade-off for memory organisation
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Description: Space and time can each act as scaffolds for the individuation and selection of visual objects in working memory. Here we ask whether there is a trade-off between the use of space and time for visual working memory: whether observers will rely less on space, when memoranda can additionally be individuated through time. We tracked the use of space through directional biases in microsaccades after attention was directed to memory contents that had been encoded simultaneously or sequentially to the left and right of fixation. We found that spatial gaze biases were preserved when participants could (Experiment 1) and even when they had to (Experiment 2) additionally rely on time for object individuation. Thus, space remains a profound organizing medium for working memory even when other organizing sources are available and utilised, with no evidence for an obligatory trade-off between the use of space and time.