I was wondering if it is possible to have an unlimited number of questions for a fixed time interval. For example, what I'd like to do is have two numbers with either an addition or subtraction sign shown on the screen for 1 second, whereupon the subject is asked to respond with the answer. After the subject answers, another question of the same sort will be asked and the cycle is meant to repeat for a total of 5 seconds. The subject is asked to answer as many questions as possible with a fixed time limit.

This is meant as a distractor task so I am not looking to record what the subject's answers are. However, everytime I try to accomplish this it fails miserably. To give you an idea of the overall study I am trying to produce I am providing a breakdown of one of the conditions. Here it is, any advice would be greatly appreciated:

Space Retrieval

  • Face with name shown for 6 seconds
  • Blank screen for 2 seconds
  • DISTRACTER TASK: Two numbers with either an addition or subtraction sign shown on screen for 1 second
  • DISTRACTER TASK: Computer asks "What is the answer?" and participants type in the answer. (Note: the answer is to be shown on the screen).
  • Repeat 3 and 4 for the first interval* (even if participant only goes through one cycle or does not even answer the question)
  • Face shown for 6 seconds
  • Computer asks “What is this person’s name?” and participants type in the name
  • IF participant types in the wrong name:
    • shown same face and with “My name is ___” shown underneath it for 6 seconds
    • repeat steps 2-7 five times
  • IF participant types in the correct name:
    • repeat steps 2-7 with steps 3 and 4 is repeated at the next interval* five times
*The intervals are increasing at 10 seconds, 30 seconds, 60 seconds and 120 seconds
  • Then go on to the next face and start at step 1