Inhibition of return in static but not necessarily in dynamic search.
If and when search involves the serial inspection of items by covert or overt attention, its efficiency would be enhanced by a mechanism that would discourage re-inspections of items or regions of the display that had already been examined. Klein (1988, 2000; Klein & Dukewich, 2006) proposed that inhibition of return (IOR) might be such a mechanism. The present experiments explored this proposal by combining a dynamic search task (Horowitz & Wolfe, 1998, 2003) with a probe-detection task. IOR was observed when search was most efficient (static and slower dynamic search). IOR was not observed when search performance was less efficient (fast dynamic search).These findings are consistent with the "foraging facilitator" proposal of IOR and are unpredicted by theories of search that assume parallel accumulation of information across the array (plus noise) as a general explanation for the effect of set size upon search performance.