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  1. The Paradox of Colour Constancy: Plotting the Lower Borders of Perception.Will Davies - forthcoming - Noûs.
    This paper resolves a paradox concerning colour constancy. On the one hand, our intuitive, pre-theoretical concept holds that colour constancy involves invariance in the perceived colours of surfaces under changes in illumination. On the other, there is a robust scientific consensus that colour constancy can persist in cerebral achromatopsia, a profound impairment in the ability to perceive colours. The first stage of the solution advocates pluralism about our colour constancy capacities. The second details the close relationship between colour constancy and (...)
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  2. Color and the Problem of Perceptual Presence.Mark Eli Kalderon - forthcoming - Dialectica.
    Very often, objects in the scene before us are somehow perceived to be constant or uniform or unchanging in color, shape, size, or position, even while their appearance with respect to these features somehow changes. This is a familiar and pervasive fact about perception, even if it is notoriously difficult to describe accurately let alone adequately account for. These difficulties are not unrelated—how we are inclined to describ the phenomenology of perceptual constancy will affect how we are inclined to accoun (...)
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  3. Objectivity, Perceptual Constancy, and Teleology in Young Children.Uwe Peters - forthcoming - Mind and Language.
    Can young children such as 3-year-olds represent the world objectively? Some prominent developmental psychologists (Perner, Tomasello) assume so. I argue that this view is susceptible to a prima facie powerful objection: to represent objectively, one must be able to represent not only features of the entities represented but also features of objectification itself, which 3-year-olds can’t do yet. Drawing on Tyler Burge’s work on perceptual constancy, I provide a response to this objection and motivate a distinction between three different kinds (...)
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  4. Constancy and Constitution.Kristjan Laasik - 2021 - Theoria 87 (3):781-798.
    I argue for the following claims: (1) A core Husserlian account of perceptual constancy needs to be given in terms of indicative future-oriented conditionals but can be complemented by a counterfactual account; (2) thus conceived, constancy is a necessary aspect of content. I speak about a “core Husserlian” account so as to capture certain ideas that Michael Madary has presented as the core of Edmund Husserl's approach to perceptual constancy, viz., that “perception is partly constituted by the continuous interplay of (...)
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  5. Sustained Representation of Perspectival Shape.Jorge Morales, Axel Bax & Chaz Firestone - 2020 - Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 117 (26):14873–14882.
    Arguably the most foundational principle in perception research is that our experience of the world goes beyond the retinal image; we perceive the distal environment itself, not the proximal stimulation it causes. Shape may be the paradigm case of such “unconscious inference”: When a coin is rotated in depth, we infer the circular object it truly is, discarding the perspectival ellipse projected on our eyes. But is this really the fate of such perspectival shapes? Or does a tilted coin retain (...)
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  6. Do Constancy Mechanisms Save Distal Content?Justin Garson - 2019 - Philosophical Quarterly 69 (275):409-417.
    In this journal, Schulte develops a novel solution to the problem of distal content: by virtue of what is a mental representation about a distal object rather than a more proximal cause of that representation? Schulte maintains that in order for a representation to have a distal content, it must be produced by a constancy mechanism, along with two other conditions. I raise three objections to his solution. First, a core component of Schulte's solution is just a restrictive version of (...)
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  7. Are Perspectival Shapes Seen or Imagined? An Experimental Approach.John Schwenkler & Assaf Weksler - 2019 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 18 (5):855-877.
    This paper proposes a novel experimental approach that would help to determine whether perspectival shapes, such as the elliptical profile of a tilted plate or coin, are part of perceptual experience. If they are part of perceptual experience, then it should be possible to identify these shapes simply by attending appropriately to them. Otherwise, in order to identify perspectival shapes they must first be constructed in the visual imagination. We propose that these accounts of perspectival identification can be tested by (...)
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  8. Spatial Perception: The Perspectival Aspect of Perception.E. J. Green & Susanna Schellenberg - 2018 - Philosophy Compass 13 (2):e12472.
    When we perceive an object, we perceive the object from a perspective. As a consequence of the perspectival nature of perception, when we perceive, say, a circular coin from different angles, there is a respect in which the coin looks circular throughout, but also a respect in which the coin's appearance changes. More generally, perception of shape and size properties has both a constant aspect—an aspect that remains stable across changes in perspective—and a perspectival aspect—an aspect that changes depending on (...)
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  9. The Perspectival Character of Perception.Kevin J. Lande - 2018 - Journal of Philosophy 115 (4):187-214.
    You can perceive things, in many respects, as they really are. For example, you can correctly see a coin as circular from most angles. Nonetheless, your perception of the world is perspectival. The coin looks different when slanted than when head-on, and there is some respect in which the slanted coin looks similar to a head-on ellipse. Many hold that perception is perspectival because you perceive certain properties that correspond to the “looks” of things. I argue that this view is (...)
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  10. Art and Ambiguity: A Gestalt-Shift Approach to Elusive Appearances.John O'Dea - 2018 - In Fabian Dorsch & Fiona Macpherson (eds.), Phenomenal Presence.
    I defend a solution to a long-standing problem with perceptual appearances, brought about by the phenomenon of perceptual constancy. The problem is that in conditions which are non-ideal, yet within the range that perceptual constancy works, we see things veridically despite an “appearance” which is traditionally taken to be non-veridical. For example, a tilted coin is often taken to have an “elliptical appearance”, shadowed surfaces a “darker appearance”. These appearances are puzzling for a number of reasons. I defend and elaborate (...)
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  11. Constancy Mechanisms and the Normativity of Perception.Zed Adams & Chauncey Maher - 2017 - In Zed Adams & Jacob Browning (eds.), Giving a Damn: Essays in Dialogue with John Haugeland. Cambridge, MA: MIT Pres.
    In this essay, we draw on John Haugeland’s work in order to argue that Burge is wrong to think that exercises of perceptual constancy mechanisms suffice for perceptual representation. Although Haugeland did not live to read or respond to Burge’s Origins of Objectivity, we think that his work contains resources that can be developed into a critique of the very foundation of Burge’s approach. Specifically, we identify two related problems for Burge. First, if (what Burge calls) mere sensory responses are (...)
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  12. Merleau-Ponty on Style as the Key to Perceptual Presence and Constancy.Samantha Matherne - 2017 - Journal of the History of Philosophy 55 (4):693-727.
    In recent discussions of two important issues in the philosophy of perception, viz. the problems of perceptual presence and perceptual constancy, Merleau-Ponty’s ideas have been garnering attention thanks to the work of Sean Kelly and Alva Noë. Although both Kelly’s normative approach and Noë’s enactive approach highlight important aspects of Merleau-Ponty’s view, I argue that neither does full justice to it because they overlook the central role that style plays in his solution to these problems. I show that a closer (...)
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  13. Hume's Table, Peacocke's Trees, the Tilted Penny and the Reversed Seeing-in Account.Robert Schroer - 2017 - Mind and Language 32 (2):209-230.
    In seeing a tilted penny, we are experientially aware of both its circularity and another shape, which I dub ‘β-ellipticality’. Some claim that our experiential awareness of the intrinsic shapes/sizes of everyday objects depends upon our experiential awareness of β-shapes/β-sizes. In contrast, I maintain that β-property experiences are the result of what Richard Wollheim calls ‘seeing-in’, but run in reverse: instead of seeing a three-dimensional object in a flat surface, we see a flat surface in a three-dimensional object. Using this (...)
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  14. Low-Level Properties in Perceptual Experience.Philip J. Walsh - 2017 - International Journal of Philosophical Studies 25 (5):682-703.
    Whether perceptual experience represents high-level properties like causation and natural-kind in virtue of its phenomenology is an open question in philosophy of mind. While the question of high-level properties has sparked disagreement, there is widespread agreement that the sensory phenomenology of perceptual experience presents us with low-level properties like shape and color. This paper argues that the relationship between the sensory character of experience and the low-level properties represented therein is more complex than most assume. Careful consideration of mundane examples, (...)
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  15. Multisensory Processing and Perceptual Consciousness: Part I.Robert Eamon Briscoe - 2016 - Philosophy Compass 11 (2):121-133.
    Multisensory processing encompasses all of the various ways in which the presence of information in one sensory modality can adaptively influence the processing of information in a different modality. In Part I of this survey article, I begin by presenting a cartography of some of the more extensively investigated forms of multisensory processing, with a special focus on two distinct types of multisensory integration. I briefly discuss the conditions under which these different forms of multisensory processing occur as well as (...)
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  16. Triangulating How Things Look.John Morrison - 2015 - Mind and Language 30 (2):140-161.
    Suppose you're unable to discriminate the colors of two objects. According to the triangulation view, their colors might nonetheless look different to you, and that's something you can discover as a result of further comparisons. The primary motivation for this view is its apparent ability to solve a puzzle involving a series of pairwise indiscriminable objects. I argue that, due to visual noise, the triangulation view doesn't really solve the puzzle.
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  17. Perceptual Transparency and Perceptual Constancy.Jan Almäng - 2014 - Husserl Studies 30 (1):1-19.
    A central topic in discussions about qualia concerns their purported transparency. According to transparency theorists, an experience is transparent in the sense that the subject having the experience is aware of nothing but the intended object of the experience. In this paper this notion is criticized for failing to account for the dynamical aspects of perception. A key assumption in the paper is that perceptual content has a certain temporal depth, in the sense that each act of perception can present (...)
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  18. Spatial Content and Motoric Significance.Robert Briscoe - 2014 - Avant: Trends in Interdisciplinary Studies 1 (2):199-216.
    According to “actionism” (Noë 2010), perception constitutively depends on implicit knowledge of the way sensory stimulations vary as a consequence of the perceiver’s self-movement. My aim in this contribution is to develop an alternative conception of the role of action in perception present in the work of Gareth Evans using resources provided by Ruth Millikan’s biosemantic theory of mental representation.
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  19. Olfactory Objects.Felipe Carvalho - 2014 - Disputatio 6 (38):45-66.
    The philosophy of perception has been mostly focused on vision, to the detriment of other modalities like audition or olfaction. In this paper I focus on olfaction and olfactory experience, and raise the following questions: is olfaction a perceptual-representational modality? If so, what does it represent? My goal in the paper is, firstly, to provide an affirmative answer to the first question, and secondly, to argue that olfaction represents odors in the form of olfactory objects, to which olfactory qualities are (...)
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  20. Burge’s Defense of Perceptual Content.Todd Ganson, Ben Bronner & Alex Kerr - 2014 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 88 (3):556-573.
    A central question, if not the central question, of philosophy of perception is whether sensory states have a nature similar to thoughts about the world, whether they are essentially representational. According to the content view, at least some of our sensory states are, at their core, representations with contents that are either accurate or inaccurate. Tyler Burge’s Origins of Objectivity is the most sustained and sophisticated defense of the content view to date. His defense of the view is problematic in (...)
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  21. Psychological Experiments and Phenomenal Experience in Size and Shape Constancy.Gary Hatfield - 2014 - Philosophy of Science 81 (5):940-953.
    Some experiments in perceptual psychology measure perceivers’ phenomenal experiences of objects versus their cognitive assessments of object properties. Analyzing such experiments, this article responds to Pizlo’s claim that much work on shape constancy before 1985 confused problems of shape ambiguity with problems of shape constancy. Pizlo fails to grasp the logic of experimental designs directed toward phenomenal aspects of shape constancy. In the domain of size perception, Granrud’s studies of size constancy in children and adults distinguish phenomenal from cognitive factors.
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  22. Are Color Experiences Representational?Todd Ganson - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 166 (1):1-20.
    The dominant view among philosophers of perception is that color experiences, like color judgments, are essentially representational: as part of their very nature color experiences possess representational contents which are either accurate or inaccurate. My starting point in assessing this view is Sydney Shoemaker’s familiar account of color perception. After providing a sympathetic reconstruction of his account, I show how plausible assumptions at the heart of Shoemaker’s theory make trouble for his claim that color experiences represent the colors of things. (...)
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  23. Colour Constancy and Fregean Representationalism.Boyd Millar - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 164 (1):219-231.
    All representationalists maintain that there is a necessary connection between an experience’s phenomenal character and intentional content; but there is a disagreement amongst representationalists regarding the nature of those intentional contents that are necessarily connected to phenomenal character. Russellian representationalists maintain that the relevant contents are composed of objects and/or properties, while Fregean representationalists maintain that the relevant contents are composed of modes of presentation of objects and properties. According to Fregean representationalists such as David Chalmers and Brad Thompson, the (...)
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  24. Perception and Reality.Keith Wilson - 2013 - New Philosopher 1 (2):104-107.
    Taken at face value, the picture of reality suggested by modern science seems radically opposed to the world as we perceive it through our senses. Indeed, it is not uncommon to hear scientists and others claim that much of our perceptual experience is a kind of pervasive illusion rather than a faithful presentation of various aspects of reality. On this view, familiar properties such as colours and solidity, to take just two examples, do not belong to external objects, but are (...)
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  25. Color Constancy.David H. Foster - 2011 - Vision Research 51:674-700.
    A quarter of a century ago, the first systematic behavioral experiments were performed to clarify the nature of color constancy—the effect whereby the perceived color of a surface remains constant despite changes in the spectrum of the illumination. At about the same time, new models of color constancy appeared, along with physiological data on cortical mechanisms and photographic colorimetric measurements of natural scenes. Since then, as this review shows, there have been many advances. The theoretical requirements for constancy have been (...)
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  26. Philosophy of Perception and the Phenomenology of Visual Space.Gary Hatfield - 2011 - Philosophic Exchange 42 (1):31-66.
    In the philosophy of perception, direct realism has come into vogue. Philosophical authors assert and assume that what their readers want, and what anyone should want, is some form of direct realism. There are disagreements over precisely what form this direct realism should take. The majority of positions in favor now offer a direct realism in which objects and their material or physical properties constitute the contents of perception, either because we have an immediate or intuitive acquaintance with those objects (...)
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  27. The Puzzle of Perception.Michael Madary - 2010 - Think 9 (25):57-63.
    Here is an old philosophical puzzle. Take out a coin and look at it. It is a flat disk. Now tilt it so that you look at it on an angle. From an angle, there is some sense in which the tilted coin appears elliptical. But there is also a strong sense in which the tilted coin looks circular, like a flat disk. How can one object look both elliptical and circular at the same time? Thus, the puzzle of the (...)
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  28. How Things Look (And What Things Look That Way).Mohan Matthen - 2010 - In Bence Nanay (ed.), Perceiving the World. Oxford University Press. pp. 226.
    What colour does a white wall look in the pinkish light of the late afternoon? Philosophers disagree: they hold variously that it looks pink, white, both, and no colour at all. A new approach is offered. After reviewing the dispute, a reinterpretation of perceptual constancy is offered. In accordance with this reinterpretation, it is argued that perceptual features such as color must always be predicated of perceptual objects. Thus, it might be that in pinkish light, the wall looks white and (...)
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  29. Perceptual Experience and the Capacity to Act.Susanna Schellenberg - 2010 - In N. Gangopadhay, M. Madary & F. Spicer (eds.), Perception, Action, and Consciousness. Oxford University Press. pp. 145.
    This paper develops and defends the capacity view, that is, the view that the ability to perceive the perspective-independent or intrinsic properties of objects depends on the perceiver’s capacity to act. More specifically, I argue that self-location and spatial know-how are jointly necessary to perceive the intrinsic spatial properties of objects. Representing one’s location allows one to abstract from one’s particular vantage point to perceive the perspective-independent properties of objects. Spatial know-how allows one to perceive objects as the kind of (...)
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  30. Color Constancy: Phenomenal or Projective?Adam J. Reeves, Kinjiro Amano & David H. Foster - 2008 - Perception and Psychophysics 70:219-228.
    Naive observers viewed a sequence of colored Mondrian patterns, simulated on a color monitor. Each pattern was presented twice in succession, first under one daylight illuminant with a correlated color temperature of either 16,000 or 4,000 K and then under the other, to test for color constancy. The observers compared the central square of the pattern across illuminants, either rating it for sameness of material appearance or sameness of hue and saturation or judging an objective property—that is, whether its change (...)
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  31. The Situation-Dependency of Perception.Susanna Schellenberg - 2008 - Journal of Philosophy 105 (2):55-84.
    I argue that perception is necessarily situation-dependent. The way an object is must not just be distinguished from the way it appears and the way it is represented, but also from the way it is presented given the situational features. First, I argue that the way an object is presented is best understood in terms of external, mind-independent, but situation-dependent properties of objects. Situation-dependent properties are exclusively sensitive to and ontologically dependent on the intrinsic properties of objects, such as their (...)
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  32. Action and Self-Location in Perception.Susanna Schellenberg - 2007 - Mind 116 (463):603-632.
    I offer an explanation of how subjects are able to perceive the intrinsic spatial properties of objects, given that subjects always perceive from a particular location. The argument proceeds in two steps. First, I argue that a conception of space is necessary to perceive the intrinsic spatial properties of objects. This conception of space is spelled out by showing that perceiving intrinsic properties requires perceiving objects as the kind of things that are perceivable from other locations. Second, I show that (...)
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  33. The Influence of Cast Shadows on Visual Search.Ronald A. Rensink & Patrick Cavanagh - 2004 - Perception 33:1339-1358.
    We show that cast shadows can have a significant influence on the speed of visual search. In particular, we find that search based on the shape of a region is affected when the region is darker than the background and corresponds to a shadow formed by lighting from above. Results support the proposal that an early-level system rapidly identifies regions as shadows and then discounts them, making their shapes more difficult to access. Several constraints used by this system are mapped (...)
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  34. Does Colour Constancy Exist?David H. Foster - 2003 - Trends in Cognitive Sciences 7 (10):439-443.
    For a stable visual world, the colours of objects should appear the same under different lights. This property of colour constancy has been assumed to be fundamental to vision, and many experimental attempts have been made to quantify it. I contend here, however, that the usual methods of measurement are either too coarse or concentrate not on colour constancy itself, but on other, complementary aspects of scene perception. Whether colour constancy exists other than in nominal terms remains unclear.
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  35. Conjoint Representations and the Mental Capacity for Multiple Simultaneous Perspectives.Rainer Mausfeld - 2003 - In Heiko Hecht, Robert Schwartz & Margaret Atherton (eds.), Looking Into Pictures. MIT Press. pp. 17--60.
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  36. The Dual Coding of Colour.Rainer Mausfeld - 2003 - In Rainer Mausfeld & Dieter Heyer (eds.), Colour Perception: Mind and the Physical World. Oxford University Press. pp. 381--430.
    The chapter argues from an ethology-inspired internalist perspective that ‘colour’ is not a homogeneous and autonomous attribute, but rather plays different roles in different conceptual forms underlying perception. It discusses empirical and theoretical evidence that indicates that core assumptions underlying orthodox conceptions are grossly inadequate. The assumptions pertain to the idea that colour is a kind of autonomous and unitary attribute. It is regarded as unitary or homogeneous by assuming that its core properties do not depend on the type of (...)
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  37. Color Perception: From Grassmann Codes to a Dual Code for Object and Illumination Colors.Rainer Mausfeld - 1998 - In W. Backhaus, R. Kliegl & J. Werner (eds.), Color Vision. Perspectives from Different Disciplines. De Gruyter.
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  38. Early Completion of Occluded Objects.Ronald A. Rensink & James T. Enns - 1998 - Vision Research 38:2489-2505.
    We show that early vision can use monocular cues to rapidly complete partially-occluded objects. Visual search for easily detected fragments becomes difficult when the completed shape is similar to others in the display; conversely, search for fragments that are difficult to detect becomes easy when the completed shape is distinctive. Results indicate that completion occurs via the occlusion-triggered removal of occlusion edges and linking of associated regions. We fail to find evidence for a visible filling-in of contours or surfaces, but (...)
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  39. Preemption Effects in Visual Search: Evidence for Low-Level Grouping.Ronald A. Rensink & James T. Enns - 1995 - Psychological Review 102 (1):101-130.
    Experiments are presented showing that visual search for Mueller-Lyer (ML) stimuli is based on complete configurations, rather than component segments. Segments easily detected in isolation were difficult to detect when embedded in a configuration, indicating preemption by low-level groups. This preemption—which caused stimulus components to become inaccessible to rapid search—was an all-or-nothing effect, and so could serve as a powerful test of grouping. It is shown that these effects are unlikely to be due to blurring by simple spatial filters at (...)
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  40. Preattentive Recovery of Three-Dimensional Orientation From Line Drawings.James T. Enns & Ronald A. Rensink - 1991 - Psychological Review 98 (3):335-351.
    It has generally been assumed that rapid visual search is based on simple features and that spatial relations between features are irrelevant for this task. Seven experiments involving search for line drawings contradict this assumption; a major determinant of search is the presence of line junctions. Arrow- and Y-junctions were detected rapidly in isolation and when they were embedded in drawings of rectangular polyhedra. Search for T-junctions was considerably slower. Drawings containing T-junctions often gave rise to very slow search even (...)
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  41. Sensitivity to Three-Dimensional Orientation in Visual Search.James T. Enns & Ronald A. Rensink - 1990 - Psychological Science 1 (5):323-326.
    Previous theories of early vision have assumed that visual search is based on simple two-dimensional aspects of an image, such as the orientation of edges and lines. It is shown here that search can also be based on three-dimensional orientation of objects in the corresponding scene, provided that these objects are simple convex blocks. Direct comparison shows that image-based and scene-based orientation are similar in their ability to facilitate search. These findings support the hypothesis that scene-based properties are represented at (...)
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  42. Influence of Scene-Based Properties on Visual Search.James T. Enns & Ronald A. Rensink - 1990 - Science 247:721-723.
    The task of visual search is to determine as rapidly as possible whether a target item is present or absent in a display. Rapidly detected items are thought to contain features that correspond to primitive elements in the human visual system. In previous theories, it has been assumed that visual search is based on simple two-dimensional features in the image. However, visual search also has access to another level of representation, one that describes properties in the corresponding three-dimensional scene. Among (...)
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  43. The Sensory Core and the Medieval Foundations of Early Modern Perceptual Theory.Gary Hatfield & William Epstein - 1979 - Isis 70 (3):363-384.
    This article seeks the origin, in the theories of Ibn al-Haytham (Alhazen), Descartes, and Berkeley, of two-stage theories of spatial perception, which hold that visual perception involves both an immediate representation of the proximal stimulus in a two-dimensional ‘‘sensory core’’ and also a subsequent perception of the three dimensional world. The works of Ibn al-Haytham, Descartes, and Berkeley already frame the major theoretical options that guided visual theory into the twentieth century. The field of visual perception was the first area (...)
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