Hall S S, Pollux P, Guo K, 2008, "Exploitation of common regularities in natural environment increases our contrast sensitivity for target detection" Perception 37 ECVP Abstract Supplement, page 12
Exploitation of common regularities in natural environment increases our contrast sensitivity for target detection
S S Hall, P Pollux, K Guo
Spatiotemporal regularity, co-linearity and co-circularity are common regularities in visual environment. The prior knowledge of the probability structure of these regularities could be informative for efficient visual system. We explored to what degree different regularities influence our contrast sensitivity for target detection. The dynamic stimulus sequence comprised four short bars appearing consecutively towards the fovea, followed by a target bar with varying contrast; we systematically measured human contrast detection performance of the briefly presented target as the function of statistical structure and predictability of the stimulus sequence. The results illustrated that both contrast sensitivity and reaction time for target detection was facilitated by predictable spatiotemporal stimulus structure. Consistent with natural image analysis that co-linearity is a stronger statistical feature than co-circularity, the facilitation in target detection was more evident for predictable stimulus sequence following co-linear path than co-circular path. As response bias and uncertainty reduction could not fully account for our observation, it seems that our brain is aware of and uses these common regularities to interpret incoming visual signals.
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