iTemplate: A template-based eye movement data analysis approach
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Current eye movement data analysis methods rely on defining areas of interest (AOIs). Due to the fact that AOIs are created and modified manually, variances in their size, shape, and location are unavoidable. These variances affect not only the consistency of the AOI definitions, but also the validity of the eye movement analyses based on the AOIs. To reduce the variances in AOI creation and modification and achieve a procedure to process eye movement data with high precision and efficiency, we propose a template-based eye movement data analysis method. Using a linear transformation algorithm, this method registers the eye movement data from each individual stimulus to a template. Thus, users only need to create one set of AOIs for the template in order to analyze eye movement data, rather than creating a unique set of AOIs for all individual stimuli. This change greatly reduces the error caused by the variance from manually created AOIs and boosts the efficiency of the data analysis. Furthermore, this method can help researchers prepare eye movement data for some advanced analysis approaches, such as iMap. We have developed software (iTemplate) with a graphic user interface to make this analysis method available to researchers.
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