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Timing accuracy under Microsoft Windows revealed through external chronometry

Chambers, Christopher D. and Brown, M. 2003. Timing accuracy under Microsoft Windows revealed through external chronometry. Behavior Research Methods, Instruments & Computers 35 (1) , pp. 96-108. 10.3758/BF03195501

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Recent studies by Myors (1998, 1999) have concluded that the Microsoft Windows operating system is unable to support sufficient timing precision and resolution for use in psychological research. In the present study, we reexamined the timing accuracy of Windows 95/98, using (1) external chronometry, (2) methods to maximize the system priority of timing software, and (3) timing functions with a theoretical resolution of 1 msec or better. The suitability of various peripheral response devices and the relative timing accuracy of computers with microprocessors with different speeds were also explored. The results indicate that if software is properly controlled, submillisecond timing resolution is achievable under Windows with both old and new computers alike. Of the computer input devices tested, the standard parallel port was revealed as the most precise, and the serial mouse also exhibited sufficient timing precision for use in single-interval reaction time experiments.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Psychology
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC0321 Neuroscience. Biological psychiatry. Neuropsychiatry
Publisher: Springer
ISSN: 1554-3528
Last Modified: 04 Jun 2017 04:08

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